“So, tell us about your skills?”

If you’ve ever been asked that question in an interview you know the importance of being able to back up your skills with concrete evidence.

Online learning could be the answer. Not only do virtual courses help you refresh your skills or pick up new ones, but once you’ve completed them they usually provide you with some form of certification to show off to employers. Which could be just the proof you need to land that dream job.

From customer service to social media, here are five FREE courses that you can take right now from the comfort of your sofa.

Social Media Marketing – Shaw Academy

Did you know 86% of candidates now use social media to find a job? While, on the other side, employers are increasingly looking for candidates that are social media-savvy.

This course from Shaw Academy provides a crash course in the basics of social media, through scheduled webinars, interactive quizzes and assignments. It’s designed more for those looking for a career in social media marketing, but the learnings are broad enough to apply to many different fields.

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Teamwork Skills – Coursera

Many of us list teamwork and communication as key skills when applying for jobs but this course lets you go one step further and gain an actual qualification in the subject.

The course is broken down into four modules and includes quizzes and graded assignments. You should come away from it with a better understanding of how to manage and resolve conflict within a team and make better decisions.

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Data Analytics & Excel – Future Learn

While it might not be the most glamorous of skills, being able to manage and visualise data is a great asset to have up your sleeve if you’re looking to climb the managerial ladder now or in the future.

This two-week course, led by a professor in Data Analytics, will teach you how to crunch numbers using Microsoft Excel and use data to make better, more informed business decisions.

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Customer Service – Alison

Good customer service is the difference between a customer coming once and a customer coming again. Its business value should never be underestimated. And yet because it can be difficult to quantify, it often is.

One easy way to quantify your own customer service talents is by taking an online course. There are 20 different ones available on Alison (all are free) but this one should be first on your list. The learning is broken up into 6 modules and only takes 1-2 hours to complete.

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Language Learning – Duolingo

As the world becomes more and more connected online and companies spread out across the planet, being able to speak one or more other languages is a sure-fire way to get ahead.

The good news is that there are a ton of apps that make learning a language easy and fun. One of our favourites is Duolingo, which has over 30 languages on a free, interactive mobile app.

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