(NewsNation) — With more jobs than job seekers, some employers are changing the way they look at degree requirements.
In September, there were 10.7 million job openings but only 5.8 million job seekers. So, companies looking to fill roles have begun loosening requirements for high-paying jobs, including dropping requirements for degrees.
Career navigation specialist Tessa White said it’s all about supply and demand.
“If there aren’t enough people to fill the jobs, they’ve got to rethink how they fill them. So companies are open now to certificate programs, for example, or even training people to get people in the door and filling these jobs,” she told NewsNation.
White said practical experience and targeted certificate programs can qualify applicants for roles that may have traditionally required a four-year degree.
Of course, that doesn’t apply to all fields.
“There are some industries like the medical industry, teaching professions, where you have to pay to play. You pay to get that degree to even play the game. However, in corporate America, they’re starting to figure out what the trade schools have always known, which is you don’t necessarily have to have the four-year degree to be a wonderful employee,” White said.
That includes companies like Delta Air Lines and Google, who have reduced education requirements for some positions and focused more on skills and experience, according to The Wall Street Journal.
White said it’s important for job seekers to really be clear about what past experiences they bring to the table from previous jobs or internships. She also said people should be careful when looking at job listings and seeing how their skills can fit the role.
“A lot of times people let themselves out of a job and running because they don’t think they have the education when in fact, if they thought about the practical skills they bring to the table. If you can convey the value proposition, you get a shot at the job.”