Education Requirements for Employment Rising

05.01.2014
Workforce

College-educated workers sought for jobs previously held by high school grads

For many companies, an associate or bachelor’s degree is increasingly becoming the new high school diploma. According to a new CareerBuilder survey, 27% of employers say their educational requirements for employment have increased over the last five years, and 30% are hiring more college-educated workers for positions that were previously held by high school graduates.

Looking only at a subset of companies hiring STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) workers in 2014, those figures rise to 46% and 43%, respectively.

The rising bar is even extending beyond the bachelor’s degree in some cases. One in five employers are now targeting master’s degree holders for positions primarily held by those with four-year degrees. A third of employers are sending current employees back to school for an advanced degree, and a majority of that group (81%) is at least offering partial funding.

Positive Results

Employers hiring college-educated applicants for occupations previously held by high school graduates are seeing positive results. Most survey respondents (84%) cite at least one positive impact, including revenue:

  • Higher-quality work: 56%
  • Productivity: 45%
  • Innovation/idea generation: 41%
  • Communication: 41%
  • Employee retention: 27%
  • Revenue: 19%
  • Customer loyalty/retention: 17%

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