Why we love to hire problem-solvers (and how to improve your skills)

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Why we love to hire problem-solvers (and how to improve your skills)

Think you’re an excellent problem-solver? Then you might just be the perfect fit for us at Aquarium Software.

We love problem-solvers, and when recruiting, we’re always hoping to identify candidates with the right combination of creativity and logic.

But just what do we mean by ‘problem-solving’?

Continue reading to find out exactly what we’re talking about, how you can improve your skills and why we’re always on the lookout for people with the knack for finding solutions.


What is problem-solving?

Problem-solving is all about finding ways to deal with simple or complex situations. It’s something we all do every day – and a lot of us won’t even realise we’re doing it.

Ever had to find an alternative route home? Fix a leaky tap? Mend a broken phone? These are all examples of domestic problem-solving.

But what about in the workplace?

All jobs will require some level of problem-solving, from finding new ways to manage your time to working out how to convert website traffic into leads. Problem-solving can transform a business, which is why it’s one of the top skills that employers look for when recruiting.


What are problem-solving skills?

While you might think of problem-solving as just one skill, it actually denotes a whole host of expertise and attributes.

These all allow a person to define a problem, conceptualise and implement a solution.


Skills that make a strong problem-solver

  • Risk management
  • Decision making
  • Researching
  • Forecasting
  • Analysis
  • Collaborating

When we’re hiring, we rank these skills highly on the list of candidate must-haves – in some cases, even higher than technical ability!


How can you become a better problem-solver?

In order to become a better problem-solver, you need to learn the key stages of problem-solving.

You see, problem-solving isn’t just the end result; it’s a process of multiple steps. Following the right process will help you organise your thoughts and find solutions faster.

  1. Identify the problem. This might sound obvious, but arguably the most important step in problem-solving is realising that there’s a problem to be solved.
  2. Define the reason. It’s great that you’ve noticed a problem, but you’re not going to solve it if you can’t find out the cause.
  3. Examine your solutions. Once you know the problem and cause, you need to think of all the ways that the problem COULD be solved – and any potential repercussions. Don’t be afraid of ‘bad’ ideas – sometimes they can lead you to good ones. 
  4. Act. Now you’ve got some possible solutions, assess each one and implement the solution that you think is best.
  5. Look at the results. Hopefully your chosen solution will fix the problem, but this isn’t always the case. Make sure you track what’s happening and don’t be ashamed to go back to the drawing board if things aren’t working as you’d hoped. 

This very simple problem-solving process is known as the IDEAL model (Identify, Define, Examine, Act, Look). but there are other problem-solving strategies out there.


Why we like to hire problem-solvers

At Aquarium, we’re obsessed with hiring excellent problem-solvers. Whether we’re recruiting a full stack developer or a senior support analyst, we’re always looking for candidates who can demonstrate problem-solving in the workplace – and we’re not alone.

Problem-solving is commonly one of the top soft skills that employers look for in a job applicant.

That’s why you’ll often hear ‘tell me one challenge you overcame in your last role’ or ‘explain to us a problem you recently solved’ in job interviews across almost all industries.

We really value employees that can think for themselves and find resolutions to what can be quite complex technical problems. This not only gives us confidence that someone can work autonomously, but they can also give us a fresh perspective on existing challenges.


To end

We’re always on the lookout for problem-solvers, so if you think you’ve got what it takes, why not visit our careers page?

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