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Sorry, Pink Floyd — More Than 1 in 4 Want Increasingly More Educated Workers

Companies currently hiring more college educated workers for jobs formerly held by high school grads.Even if you don’t remember the rest of the Pink Floyd anthem, the lyrics “We don’t need no education!” are probably emblazoned in your brain. Turns out if you want to land a job in 2014, you DO need an education — and a pretty good one at that. Just ask the 27 percent of employers who have increased their educational requirements for job seekers over the past five years.

These are the results of a new national CareerBuilder survey of more than 2,000 hiring managers and HR professionals across various industries and company sizes.

In fact, nearly 1 in 3 are hiring more college-educated workers for positions that are primarily held by high school graduates, and 1 in 5 employers are looking to attract individuals with master’s degrees to fill positions traditionally held by those with bachelor’s degrees.

Nearly 3 in 5 said they can land candidates who hold college degrees because of the tight labor market, while more than half said the skills for their positions have evolved and currently require more educated labor.

“The economic value of a college education for workers has long been known, but as occupations evolve and as companies rely more heavily on professionals with strong interpersonal and technical skill sets, workers can’t afford to stop their education at high-school. The trend toward higher-educated labor is already paying off for companies. We see that both in our surveys and data analytics research.” - Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder and co-author of The Talent Equation

So are they seeing any differences? The vast majority (86 percent) of employers who have brought on college-educated workers for jobs previously help by high school graduates have noticed at least one positive improvement to the business — for instance higher quality work, increased productivity, innovation, retention, revenue, etc.

With the educational bar set so high, 1 in 3 employers are taking things a step further by sending current employees back to school to obtain an advanced degree. Thankfully for employees, it’s easier to jump at the offer since the vast majority (4 in 5) employers are offering to fund at least part of it.

Deanna Hartley

About Deanna Hartley

Deanna Hartley is a senior copywriter and community manager on the creative services team at CareerBuilder, where she writes about issues that are top of mind for employers and recruiters – including talent acquisition, employee engagement and retention. An avid social media user, Deanna is the face behind @CBforEmployers on Twitter as well as CBforEmployers’ Facebook and Instagram pages, so it’s easy to stay connected with her. Prior to joining CareerBuilder, Deanna was a senior editor for the Human Capital Media Group, publishers of Talent Management, Chief Learning Officer, Diversity Executive and Workforce Management magazines. Deanna holds a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. She loves caffeine, social media, pop culture and dogs – though not necessarily in that order.

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