Given that over half of Singaporean graduates work in jobs unrelated to their university degrees, is it really that important to hire someone with a degree?

According to the latest YouGov research polling 646 Singaporean graduates, 99% of respondents felt that having a university degree is important.

Assuming the position of an employer, 15% said they would be unwilling to hire someone without a university degree. Thankfully half (53%) would be willing and the remaining third (33%) thinks it makes no difference.

As a HR leader, what are your thoughts on this? Would you hire someone without a degree? Why. why not? Write in to us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to share your comment. 

The YouGov research further revealed that while 53% of Singaporean graduates work in jobs unrelated to their degrees, this isn't the same across all fields of study.

Those studying accounting and finance (70%) are more likely to end up working in  a related field, compared to those who studied business, administration and law (27%).


Other factors that affect whether someone moves into a job linked to their degree included:

  • Those who studied abroad were more likely to move into a job linked to their degree than those who studied locally (51% vs 45%)
  • Older Singaporeans (aged 55 and above) were more likely than their younger counterparts (aged 25 to 34) to work in jobs relevant to their degrees (54% vs 42%).

Overall, the majority of Singaporeans (57%) found their degrees 'very useful', while 39% found them somewhat useful. The remaining 4% found them useless. This varies by field of study, with those who studied information and communications technology (72%) being more likely to think of their degrees as very useful compared with those who studied science and mathematics (43%).

Finally, the survey shed light on the factors behind Singaporeans' choice of their field of study. While about a third (37%) made the decision themselves, the rest were influenced by their parents (35%), friends (26%), and the media (14%).

Infographic / YouGov Photo / 123RF