Trump to sign executive order for federal government to focus on skills over degrees when hiring

by Bryan Brammer · Jun 26th, 2020 4:44 pm

Last Updated Jun 28th, 2020 at 8:54 pm

The White House announced on Friday that President Trump is preparing to sign an executive order that will prioritize an applicant's skill set over college degrees when hiring for federal government jobs.

The president is expected to sign the new order later Friday at the American Workforce Policy Advisory Board meeting. Ivanka Trump, co-chair of the advisory board, said the new order will "ensure that we are able to hire based on talent."

"We are modernizing federal hiring to find candidates with the relevant competencies and knowledge, rather than simply recruiting based on degree requirements," she told The Associated Press in a statement. "We encourage employers everywhere to take a look at their hiring practices and think critically about how initiatives like these can help diversify and strengthen their workforce."

The president's order will direct agencies away from evaluating candidates based solely on self-assessments. The hiring process will now allow subject matter experts to participate in interviews to assess applicants before directing them to jobs they qualify for, based on their skills.

"You can use a college degree in an unrelated discipline to qualify a candidate," a senior administration official said. "We are not eliminating the college degree requirement, we are simply saying that you cannot use that to force out someone else from a certification who has qualifications for the job."


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