Home News Why skills – not degrees – will shape the future of work – World Economic Forum

Why skills – not degrees – will shape the future of work – World Economic Forum

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  • The nature of work and careers is changing fast – and in the future, the right skills will be prized over academic qualifications alone.
  • The COVID-19 slowdown offers employers an opportunity to reshape their hiring practices around this shifting paradigm.
  • How well companies can change their mindset will help define their future performance.

For generations, we have spent the first third of our lives acquiring the college degrees we need to find jobs. These degrees are the stamps on our professional passports that paved the way for the remaining two-thirds of our journey. This implies that the nature of our work, along with the skills and knowledge required to execute it, remains unchanged for a lifetime – which of course is no longer true. While our parents likely held one job for life, most of us have had several – and not just jobs but careers, too. Our children can expect to have many jobs and careers through their professional lives – perhaps even at the same time, with the maturing of the gig economy.

Clearly, the future of work will not be about college degrees; it will be about job skills. Now is our opportunity to steer those without college degrees toward successful careers and increase diversity amongst our workforce.

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