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Is it Worth Hiring People Who Learn a New Job From Online Courses?

Is it worth hiring people who learn a new job from online coursesWith the development of online education, it has become easier to learn a new profession. You can even take online courses from home, in your spare time.

In fact, both people who already have a job and those who are still in college, can conveniently take any online course and master new skills for new careers.

I know. I am a Master Mindset Coach and I help students to explore various ways of pursuing a new career and prepare for interviews.

Because I’ve been coaching students for decades, I have personally seen how there are lots of simple ways to get your school work done. And I’ve seen how super competitive it can be to apply for jobs. With this in mind, some college students go so far as to even buy college essays to have everything under control and to keep up with their academic performance. And I’ve seen students take online courses to reduce stress so they can do better at school.

Some people eventually realize they want to switch careers.

As a result, there are more and more “switchers “on the labor market.

  • A “switcher” is someone who has decided to radically change their occupation.
  • They leave the field where they know everything and are familiar with.
  • Then they go towards new opportunities and prospects, armed with the acquired knowledge.

If you’re hiring someone, you might be wondering:

  • How do you properly interact with a “switcher”?
  • What are their pros and cons?
  • What should you pay attention to during the interview?

Know this now: Applicants for entry-level positions are all yesterday’s students of specialized universities, self-taught students, and interns.

And often people who have completed online courses show greater awareness of their choice of profession – more so compared to traditional students.

Why? People who study from online courses get concentrated knowledge and an outlook instead of the opinion of one mentor or professor.

Let’s talk about people who have already interned at other companies.

Usually, these people are a priority for employers to hire because they have real life experience.

However, according to hiring managers, one of the reasons for hiring “a clean slate employee” is that the company gets to “customize” this person.

If someone was an intern, they were like a sponge. They already enthusiastically absorbed the culture and rules of play of their first company. As a result, someone who was an intern comes to you already with a set of ideas about what is right and wrong and how things should be.

As a result, someone who studied via online courses might be a better choice. 

However if you’re an employer you should also keep in mind the following.

  • According to the researchers from the best writing services, people who make a life change and enter a new profession with a steep drop in income are more sensitive to the imbalance between their skills and their level of reward.

Online courses come in many forms. So another consideration is the quality and depth of knowledge gained.

Here are the main risks:

  • Low qualifications of the course team – reviewers, mentors. For example, when the work ” on a C” successfully passes the review without comment.
  • Weak curriculum, which does not meet the needs of the market. Let’s say, all the developers in the world use the X library, but in a particular course, there is no mention of it for some reason.
  • Lack of specific knowledge that for some reason you need, but is not required by the rest of the market, and therefore not included in the program. So, a year-long course doesn’t fit deep Computer Science theory, hardcore algorithms, or knowledge of networks.
  • The candidate could cheat. It’s a mystery why one would pay several salaries for a course and then not take it on their own. But some of the audience does. On the other hand, these guys are easily identified by the test assignment results.

Candidates who have made radical retraining have two major advantages:

  • motivation
  • level of training

For example, hiring a recent graduate is a risky investment. This person may quickly realize that they want something different and leave. They usually have a lot of opportunities on the market and a desire to try everything.

Another thing: People who changed their occupation have higher stakes for success. They already been invested extra time and money in additional education. As a result, the level of training success of such candidates can be very high. Online universities digitize the real experience of professionals from the market and give it to students in an accessible form. This allows the guys who come to work after the courses to start their duties almost instantly. 

At what level do candidates graduate from courses?

It all depends on the quality and duration of the training, as well as a particular person’s readiness to absorb knowledge.

For example, there are:

  • short courses that last about a month and are dedicated to mastering individual skills and tools;
  • full “professions” with long training – from a year and a half to two years.

How should a recruiter work with the switchers?

  • Ask the candidate to tell and show exactly what he or she did during the course.
  • Compare their projects with the work of other students from the same courses. 
  • Try to understand how involved the person was in the study: whether they brought something of their own or just did everything according to a template.
  • Find out what the initial task for the thesis project looked like, which ways of solving they chose, who they were communicating with and whether they used references.
  • Emphasize motivation.
  • Find out what the candidate was doing before, and why they decided to enter a new field.
  • Find out how they integrated courses into their life. Did they combine them with their work? Or quit their job first? How much time did they spent on education?
  • Ask for references from those who taught the candidate. 
  • Check your interview process – whether it is suitable for graduates of courses. 

At what level can you consider switchers?

Many courses last more than a year. During this time, the person receives a large and concentrated amount of knowledge. After the training, they can contend for Junior positions, but not higher.

Keep in mind: Some graduates who were involved in the study and did something above and beyond the program know the theory at a Middle Level. But it is hard to imagine that any employer would risk hiring them for serious positions right off the bat. The Middle Level is not about theory. It’s about practice. At this level, the candidate needs proven experience as a guarantee of being able to solve tasks of medium complexity independently. But a person who only took a course cannot have such experience a priori.

In the end, it’s up to you whether to hire a course graduate or not. However, you should weigh up all the pros and cons. Do your best to make sure your recruitment and onboarding processes are adjusted to all the different kinds of candidates out there.

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