Is work experience more important than qualifications?

And the answer is yes!

As a recruiter, I often get asked if work experience is more important than qualifications. When interviewing, we often assess one’s competence to do the job which should be drawn from their working experience. The qualifications normally score between 10 and 30 percent out of 100 and are often just ticked off.

The qualifications normally score between 10 and 30 percent out of 100 and are often just ticked off.

When you look at a job description, you will find the section on qualifications to have ‘required’ and ‘added advantage’. Most jobs will require a degree and state a masters to be an added advantage. This means that as long as you have a degree, you should be able to compete and having a masters is only a plus. A masters degree becomes a requirement mostly at senior level such as Head of Department, Managing Director, CEO, CFO etc. The decision to obtain a masters should be based on the direction you want your career to take, given you will be mastering in a specific subject area for a second degree which could be in a field that is different from your first degree.

Halima Muhamed CEO - The Fount Ltd
By Halima Muhamed, CEO – The Fount Ltd

It is therefore important for you to manage your expectations especially when you choose to do a masters degree. Having one is also mostly for self-actualization and validation purposes. However, you will not necessarily get a pay raise, an automatic promotion or be selected for a particular job based on the fact that you have a masters.

Some professions will require(a must have) for you to have a professional qualification such as Accounting and Finance with ACCA or CPA. But nevertheless, your work experience will always be more valuable when it comes to recruitment and selection.

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