Employer Perceptions of Non-Credit Credentials

To assist the institution as it explores expanding its non-credit offerings, Hanover conducted a literature review assessing trends in how employers perceive these credentials, and whether credential-holders may sustain advantages in the labor market relative to candidates who do not hold these credentials.

The following analysis is based on a review of academic and industry research published by sources such as the Journal of Competency-Based Education and The Burning Glass Institute.


In the following report, Hanover Research presents the results of a literature review exploring employer perceptions of non-credit credentials such as digital badges and micro-credentials.

Report Sections

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Workforce trends contributing to the rise in demand for non-credit credentials include:

Employers increasingly value competency, and report that many recent graduates appear to struggle with applying learned skills.

Micro-credentials are particularly useful in helping hiring managers to identify and validate an applicant’s specialized skills.

Employers tend to value lifelong learning and continued education in the workplace, and non-credit credentials help workers engage in continuous learning efforts.

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