· News

Degrees may no longer be a requirement as skills-based hiring surges

Ahead of A-level results day tomorrow (17 August), LinkedIn data shows a 90% increase in the share of UK job postings not requiring a degree between 2022 and 2021.

Recruiters are now five times more likely to search by skills over degrees globally, while 75% of recruiting professionals predict skills-first hiring will be a priority for their company in the next 18 months. 

Employers are increasingly recognising the value of skills-based hiring according to Josh Graff, managing director, EMEA and LATAM at LinkedIn.

He said: “A degree is not the only indicator of talent and businesses are increasingly recognising that. 

“For students who didn’t quite get the A-level results they worked and hoped for, it’s important to remember that skills can be learned in many different ways and there are many different paths into careers.”

“Degrees will always be critical for certain jobs but there are a number of exciting opportunities and alternative routes out there for people who didn’t go to university.”

More on skills first hiring:

CV-based hiring a barrier to women's recruitment

Carling brewer scraps CVs in recruitment

How to solve skills shortages with apprenticeships

The study found that in the UK, companies can expand their talent pools by nearly 10 times when adopting a skills-first approach.

The majority (77%) of UK employees agree that as the world of work is changing so quickly, it is more important today to continually learn new skills than it was 20 years ago.

Petra Tagg, director of employment agency Manpower, said skills-based recruitment will help lessen labour shortages.

She said: “As competition for skilled candidates remains high, it's vital that employers acknowledge and adapt to this shift. Skills-based hiring and training will help to widen talent pools across many industries that require specialised skills but are struggling to find exact matches right now. 

“In this context, it’s important for businesses to embrace uncertainty and make fast decisions, with an open mindset and a talent-centric approach when it comes to recruiting, focusing on a candidate's learnability and capabilities.”

Tagg said relying on qualification requirements can exclude candidates from low-income backgrounds.

She added: “Strict needs for qualifications can narrow talent pools, especially with the cost of higher education putting some people off from more traditional academic routes into work. 

“With apprenticeships and in-work training gaining traction, many candidates today are seeking more experiential and vocational education.”