Recognizing the value of self-taught employees

Picture this scenario: You’re looking for a new senior systems administrator. You’ve received a number of applications and have just started reviewing them. The first candidate has a BS in computer science from a reputable college. He completed a six-month internship in the support department of a leading software producer and has worked as a junior systems administrator at a large regional company for the past four and a half years. The second candidate only lists a high school diploma as education. You’re about to set his application aside—until the name of a well-known producer of operating systems catches your eye. When you take a closer look at his experience, you see he has held a number of positions ranging from help desk support representative with a well-known company to freelance systems network architect for a couple of startups. He also has an impressive ranking on StackExchange.

Now, which candidate are you most interested in hiring?

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