Press release   •   Dec 15, 2011 09:59 GMT

A recent online survey in the UK uncovered the importance of qualifications and discovered that employees find that courses resulting in a qualification are essential to proving their skills in today’s competitive job market.

The study was conducted through a survey on, the UK’s leading site for finding Professional Development Training, and discovered that 41% of users claimed that participating in courses that result in an official qualification are essential to proving their skills and are important for their development, while only a combined 5% believe that qualifications are either of no importance or are simply nice to have.

These findings mirror the current job climate, as the UK job market contracted in November 2011 for the first time since July 2009 (according to the latest Report on Jobs from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG).  A public policy adviser at the CIPD recently stated, "The figures point to a slow, painful contraction in the jobs market. Many firms appear to be locked in 'wait and see' mode, with some companies scaling back on employment decisions against a backdrop of increasing uncertainty as a result of the eurozone crisis and wider global economic turmoil.” Where organisations are hiring, they are becoming more specific about the skills and experience that they seek. The recruitment process is expensive for companies, so employers are looking to fill their positions with the right candidate first time, and those that have recognised qualifications, offer the lowest risk.

As well as taking place in the UK, the same study was also conducted in Denmark, Finland, Germany and Sweden and yielded over 400 responses. The majority of German (87%), Finnish (44%), and Swedish (48%) employees claimed that a course resulting in a qualification was required for their current positions, while Danish respondents were evenly split amongst the answers. 

“This data is perhaps indicative of a more competitive UK job market,” said Kate Butterworth Site Manager at “As unemployment rises, more individuals vie for a smaller number of positions, meaning it is more important than ever for job seekers to bolster their CV’s with a professional qualification. Courses that result in professional qualifications serve as a legitimising reinforcement of skills, while allowing CVs to stand out from the rest.” is the UK's largest search engine dedicated to Professional Development - search, find and compare thousands of training courses in the UK. partnered with The Independent to power The Independent's Training & Courses Site: - providing a search service to hundreds of thousands of users every month. also runs a number of niche sites dedicated to helping people find the right training and courses for their development including: coaching courses, executive education, sales, health and safety, language courses, IT courses, e-learning, distance learning courses, leadership courses and MBA programs. FindCourses Global AB is the international network of educational sites providing information on Professional Development training in Sweden, Finland, Germany and Denmark.