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Being an Overqualified Applicant or Candidate

Many of my clients receive feedback that they are overqualified for the job. Candidates may have more experience and more advanced skills than the position requires. It's just a matter of ticking the boxes in a job description or matching the company culturally. That's why recruiters and hiring managers look for people who have almost exactly the right experience. For this reason, under and overqualified job seekers are not among the favorites.

If you are overqualified for a job, potential employers will be reluctant to hire you:

  • You could quickly become bored with jobs that seem easy to you.

  • The employer believes that you will ignore some tasks.

  • They may see you as not suited to the company culture.

  • They believe that this will lead to inequities within the team.

  • There may be problems with other employers because of the generation gap.

  • You will not feel comfortable being supervised by someone less experienced.

  • You should accept the salary adjusted to the open positions, even if it is lower than your qualifications.

  • The employer doubts why you want the job.

  • They believe that this is only a temporary stop for you.

  • The long-term motivation of an overqualified employee seems unclear.

  • There is no room for such employees to grow.

  • The management sees you as a threat.

  • You seem "old" to them.

What I have learned as a recruiter is that job seekers sometimes seem highly overqualified when they are not. It is advisable to check if the candidate wants the job because he or she is desperate or wants to add value to a company and make a difference in people’s lives.

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