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Do college degrees really matter in business?

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Baskar Sundaram

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We are often asked to go to school and to focus on our studies. With a degree we can get a job and only then can we prosper in life. This age-old wisdom has rung throughout the years, but how much merit does it have now? Does success at college or university guarantee a great edge in the workforce after graduation? Should you consider the college degree when selecting a candidate?

Here are 4 reasons why a college degree should not matter when selecting a candidate-

The degree is a requirement for the competitive workforce; the topic is trivial.

It used to be relevant and unique for someone to have a degree, and now it just stands as a requirement in the workforce. While your job will most likely require a degree, it probably will not matter what field it is in. According to current research, 62% of recent college grads are working in jobs that require a degree, yet only 27% of college grads are working in a job that even relates to their major.

The real world does not care about your degree as much as your work ethic and character.

Their experience, be it on the job or off the job, is what should be noticed.

Candidates with interesting internships, candidates who have been involved in student organizations and volunteer should be noticed. The involvement shows what they are passionate about. These lines on their resume are so much more powerful than their major because they tell us that the candidate is motivated, passionate, and dedicated.

Think soft skills, not major topics.

The candidate should be capable to learn quickly, fit into the workplace environment, and be responsive to the task at hand. For these reasons, 93% of employers believe that critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills are more valuable than a job candidate’s undergraduate field of study. Furthermore, 95% of employers are looking for candidates whose abilities translate into innovation, as many of the jobs being filled today come with challenges that are more complicated than in the past.

Are they aligned with their purpose?

Purpose gives you unique energy. If they have major in a field they are interested in, they will give it the energy, attention, and passion that convert into success.

It has been proven that a happy brain is engaged, motivated, and productive. In other words, our happiness drives our success.

We have all observed the genius intern with the perfect resume who couldn’t make it to the office on time. The one who spoke six languages but teamwork was not one of them. The intern from the never-heard-of-it college who hustled harder than anyone else on the team and flew up the ladder with a blink.

Hence, a degree does not necessarily mean the candidate will be good. Likewise not having a degree does not mean the candidate will not be good.

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