For decades, it has been drilled into our heads that you need a college or university degree to get a good job. The more education you have, the better the job you will be able to get. While there is absolutely validity to this statement and a correlation between your education level and earning potential, things are starting to change. There are now a variety of ways to get proper training and gain experience for a job.

From an employer’s perspective, companies have always put a lot of stock into the type of degree and the school a candidate graduated from.

is education still important

Education is important, but it’s not the only thing you should prioritize when comparing job candidates. Experience and other factors can be just as important for some roles.


How much an organization weights a candidate’s education and academic credentials will vary based on the industry. Some industries rely on it heavily and many argue too much. But the main issue is some companies may be missing out on top talent due to a possible over-obsession with academic pedigree.

Some Companies Are Overvaluing Academic Achievements and Missing Out on Talent as a Result

Overvaluing academic achievements could negatively affect your ability to find the top talent in your industry.

Education will always be important, but it doesn’t tell the candidate’s entire story. Two candidates can have the same academic credential but be completely different. It is what you do with that degree and how it is applied that matters the most.

While academics can definitely play an important role for entry-level positions, as you hire for more senior roles, job experience and skills can play a bigger role in your hiring decision.

Do Not Immediately Discount a Candidate If They Don’t Have the Exact Academic Requirements

Overvaluing educational requirements can be a short-sighted mistake, causing you to miss out on a lot of good people based on one of many factors you should be considering when assessing candidates. Consider candidates from a holistic perspective.

  • Do they have a related degree?
  • Does their industry experience make up for a lack of academic qualifications?
  • Is it possible for the candidate to expedite missing training or courses?

Companies that consistently hire well are looking for the best people. It’s not about ensuring candidates have everything on your checklist. You can also provide onboarding and training to fill knowledge gaps.

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IQ PARTNERS is an Executive Search & Recruitment firm supporting clients across the country. We help companies hire better, hire less & retain more. We have specialist teams of recruiters in Executive Search / Board & C-Suite, Technology, Media, Digital & Marketing, Accounting & Finance, Financial Services & Insurance, Cannabis, Startup, Data Science, Consumer, eCommerce & Retail, Operations & HR, Manufacturing, Supply Chain & Engineering, Legal & Professional Services, Pharmaceutical & Life Sciences, Non-Profit & Sustainability, and Sales. Click here to view current job openings and to register with us.

Rhys Metler Sales Recruiter

Rhys Metler

Rhys is a VP, Client Services of IQ PARTNERS‘ Sales practice and leads the SalesForce Search recruitment team. He specializes in prospecting new business relationships, client retention and renewals, and building top performing Sales teams in even the most challenging environments.

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