Query Re: degrees



  • Greetings all,

    I am curious, (not for myself) is a university degree absolutely required nowadays (i.e. employers won't even call you in for an interview without one) for all tech jobs that involve any sort of actual non-sales related work? Or would experience and knowledge (as well as being strongly willed to learn new tasks) of how to do the work be better?



  • That depends....

     If a candidate without a degree is going through HR and the position calls for a degree, then they probably won't make it through the filter. On the other hand, if they can show a decent amount of experience for a position that doesn't state a degree is needed (many I've seen call for 'x-year degree in y or n years of experience'), then said candidate stands a chance. Of course, there's the whole chicken and egg question... how does one get experience if they need a degree or experience to get a job if they can't get said job.

     I'm convinced that 90% of getting a job is getting past HR to actually meet with the hiring manager. Anything one can do through their network to land a job would help. Once you get in front of a hiring manager, then experience, personality, and willingness to learn would all be more important factors (generally) than where / if you went to college... there are exceptions, of course, but then you might not want to work for someone that values an alma mater over relevant experience.



  • @webzter said:

     I'm convinced that 90% of getting a job is getting past HR to actually meet with the hiring manager. Anything one can do through their network to land a job would help. Once you get in front of a hiring manager, then experience, personality, and willingness to learn would all be more important factors (generally) than where / if you went to college... there are exceptions, of course, but then you might not want to work for someone that values an alma mater over relevant experience.

    I definitely concur with that statement.  All of my jobs were the result of networking, some were new positions created specifically for me.  I've had a good portion of unsolicited job offers that way as well.  Anything that you can do to bypass HR will help tremendously. 

    Degrees aren't always required but they do help in a lot of situations.  The benefit of a degree (beyond just the piece of paper) is that they provide concrete proof of ambition and follow through as well as provide a foundation for continued education.  That is a lot harder to prove if you just walk in and show a couple of personal projects.  If you don't have a degree you need to emphasize your other experiences either through open-source projects, volunteer work, etc that demonstrate your willingness and capability to succeed.


     


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