Hiring businesses, I have a bone to pick. You are limiting your potential! As the title reads, experience over degree, but that’s not how many businesses recruit. It’s understandable.

A degree indicates education, knowledge, even dedication, but it does not necessarily indicate experience or ability.

Perhaps experience is not important to you. Perhaps you believe that having the knowledge of how to do something is more important than having the experience of doing it.

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Do you believe that?

No, of course you don’t believe that. Do you? I’m really starting to wonder as I see job listing after job listing, requiring a degree. By using the word “require”, you have limited your options tremendously. I take this personally. As someone that is without a degree and mostly self-taught, but with nearly 15 years of hands on experience under my belt, experience of actually doing the job, over and over and over again, I can’t possibly fathom how you would cut me off the list, yet include someone that has little, to no experience at all. It just seems imbalanced. Sure, you have narrowed down your options, making it easier to choose, but in doing so in this manor you have also narrowed down your potential to hire a great employee.

Not all businesses do this… but…

I know not all businesses limit in this way. Many will require both, a degree and experience. This is also limiting! What value does a degree have, that someone with actual experience on the job would not be worthy of? There are numerous very successful individuals, that never graduated college. Individuals that you know very well. Individuals like Ted Turner, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and Richard Branson.

My advice?

If you really want to recruit the best candidates I suggest you stop limiting the best potential. While a degree can be very valuable, it is a spec in comparison to the value of experience. Many businesses have figured this out and are now not requiring a degree in their recruiting process. They have put experience over degree, and now will get to choose from all of the degree lacking greatness that you have dismissed. They could potentially be your competitors, and they could be hiring the next Steve Jobs right now.

Do yourselves a favor. Change your hiring policies. Maybe just throw in the word “or”. If you word your requirements in a way that includes, those with a degree in X “or” X years of experience, your options will be much more valuable to you as a business.

Not a knock at those with degrees!

A college degree is great and I won’t discourage anyone from obtaining one. This is not meant to be a knock at graduates at all. Degrees offer valuable knowledge and due to so many hiring policies requiring a degree, it will greatly increase your chances of being hired. However for hiring businesses, you should really evaluate your hiring process and take a look at all the potential you’re leaving on the chopping block by excluding these individuals without degrees from the application process.

Hire Me!

My name is Dennis Bosher and I run this small business I call Skilled Graphics. I have 14+ years of experience in graphic design with the last 10 years focused on branding and identity development. I have created identities for hundreds of clients and would love to help you with yours. Unfortunately while I have taken some courses on design and strategy, I do not have a college degree. I do however have a portfolio and a pretty impressive collection of client testimonials that will vouch for my work. If you would like to hire me, you are more than welcome to contact me for a quote, or even if you would simply like to say hello.

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