We recently surveyed a group of managers/directors from various organizations – including manufacturing, IT, business consulting and staffing agencies and asked them a few questions. The first one:
“Does it make a difference to you and your organization, when a candidate with 10-20 years of relevant experience who meets your general requirements, pursues advanced or continued education?”
The responses were mixed but leaned towards NO. When it is considered seems to be if it is quite relevant to the job, such as a PMP certification. However, some employers have seen an uptick in certified applicants yet little to no experience actually managing a project. And as we often hear, lacking strong communication and organizational skills can become detrimental to the project.
While having an MBA from a top-flight school can be quite relevant and attractive to a large progressive organization — an individual who has achieved an MBA but has no industry relevant/senior level experience may be disappointed in their options. Is it worth it in the end? Many say no.
On the other hand, from an agency perspective that has a relationships with a variety of organizations/industries – feels that an organization that cultivates an environment of an over-educated, underpaid workforce may not be providing a culture where the employee feels valued or engaged. Therefore, those hired based on certifications alone can gain that additional experience and sooner than later can successfully search for a more rewarding (financially and challenging) position or organization.