4 Transferable Skills to Take to the Fashion Industry

Transferable Skills to Take to the Fashion Industry - Style Nine to Five

So, you want to break into the fashion industry, but there’s one major obstacle in your way: you don’t have any fashion industry skills or experience.

It may sound like a dead end, but you have plenty of other skills, don’t you? Namely, think about your transferable skills. Maybe you can’t sew and you don’t know anything about trend forecasting, but your current skill set is more relevant to the industry than you think. If you’re trying to pivot to the fashion industry with zero experience, here are four transferable skills that you should be hyping up in every interview.

1. Data Analysis

Data analysis is a huge need in the fashion industry. There are a variety of jobs where this skill will come in handy and can open a lot of industry doors for you. For instance, if you want to work on the business side of fashion, your analytic skills will be necessary for making financial plans or demand forecasts. Or if working as a buyer, you’ll need to keep track of budgeting and orders. Social media marketers will need to track their posts’ insights and performance. Fashion marketing requires data analysis, too—tracking which campaigns turn into purchases or repeat customers, for example.

2. Cross-Functional Teamwork & Communication

Working with cross-functional teams is a given in the fashion industry. No matter where you land occupation-wise, the fashion industry is full of moving parts. You’ll not only be working on other people within your department, but with others departments and stakeholders, too. This is called cross-functional teamwork.

For instance, you may have to liaise with photographers, stylists, models, designers, makeup artists, hairdressers if you have a hands-on gig. Say you want to work in fashion writing—there are editors, brand managers, marketing managers, social media managers, other writers, and many more people you’ll have to work with.

Teamwork and communication are important in most jobs, but they are particularly paramount when it comes to the fashion world, so make sure to flex any cross-functional teams you’ve worked with in any job application you write. As a bonus, networking is the name of the game in the fashion world, and working with a wide variety of people in the industry helps boost your connections.

3. Agility

No two workdays are the same when you work in a creative industry and fashion is no different. If you’ve ever worked in a position that’s forced you to tackle numerous different roles or jump into new tasks on short notice, you’ll thrive in the fashion industry where agility is essential. This goes double if you’re working on a set of some kind. For example, if you’re a stylist, you may have to run out last minute to pick up some missing pieces that the photoshoot requires. If you’re a versatile individual with an agile mindset who never cracks under pressure, show that off when you apply for fashion jobs.

4. Tech Skills

Are you good with Photoshop, Canva, HTML, or Microsoft Excel? Are you familiar with social media scheduling apps or data management systems? Do you have a good understanding of SEO strategy platforms? All of these tech-based skills come in handy in the fashion industry.

You may find yourself doing visuals or advertising and wind up editing pictures, or you’ll need to pepper your fashion blog posts with SEO strategy. Even having a good handle on social media from your personal accounts can be an asset, a first step into further social media marketing skills. If you know what types of posts get attention and what are the best times to post, learn data analysis and how to run a digital marketing campaign and you’ll be well on your way to success.

These are just a few highlights—there are plenty more transferable skills you possess and you can find ways to apply them to the fashion industry. So, don’t count yourself out just because you don’t have styling or fashion writing experience. You have plenty to offer to the industry and if you leverage them correctly, you’ll be filling your resume with fashion skills in no time.

Not sure how to apply your skills to your dream industry? Book a Style Nine to Five Resume Refresh to help you out!

Emily Morrison is a media professional with passions for writing, film and popular culture.

Feature Image: Adobe Stock