It is reasonable that businesses would prefer to hire candidates with the highest levels of experience and knowledge. However, that isn’t always the case, though.

Emily thought that applying for an entry-level administrative position and working her way up was the best way to land her ideal career. She was qualified for the job because it was available at a large entertainment firm in London, and she had five years of experience working for other international organizations. Within days, Emily was contacted by the company’s hiring personnel, suggesting that the plan had been successful. The news wasn’t all bad, either. She was a top candidate, according to the company, and had an outstanding CV. But during the interview, they told her that she was overqualified and would get bored quickly at a job that was below her level of experience. As a compromise, the company promised Emily a new position.

On the surface, hiring a worker who is better for the position’s criteria would appear to be a success for the company. However, in practice, things hardly ever turn out that way. Even in markets where expertise is in limited supply, employers frequently reject candidates because they have too many skills and experience.