Are Skills and Experience More Valuable Than a Degree?

Today, employers are looking for a variety of talents, skills, and personality traits in future candidates.

This means that people who haven’t attended university, have just as much of a chance of getting employed due to the potential skills and experience that they have gained in the time that others have spent studying for a degree.

So, what is more valued – a degree or experience and skill? Are both equally desirable or does one stand out more than the other?

This infographic by Knod gives some more insight into the benefits and disadvantages of both perspectives:


  • 1,800 hours spent in college classes for a bachelor’s degree.
  • New graduates face intense competition and take longer to secure a job.
  • 8.5% unemployment rate of bachelor’s degree students.
  • 16.8% of graduates are underemployed.
  • Unemployment and underemployment rates have doubled since 2007!
  • Only 42% of graduates will find a job in less than 6 months.

Lack of skills:

  • 75% of employers think schools do not prepare students for the global economy.
  • 8 out of 10 adults say skills and knowledge are important to hiring managers.
  • More than 80% of employers want candidates to have work experience.

Skills and experience:

  • Experience-heavy candidates are more favored.
  • 66% of employees are hired on experience over academics.
  • Important attributes: Internships, experience during college, college major, and volunteer experience.

Skills are necessary:

  • Communication.
  • Critical thinking.
  • Problem-solving.
  • Social skills.

Read more here, do you have enough skills and experience?