/ Asked by Rachel
I keep finding job postings that have requirements like "3-5 years experience" or "5 years in the field" or things along those lines... if I have a few internships and more like 1 year of experience, should I still apply? Would I even be considered? Or is that usually a strict requirement?
Answered by Ashley, Hiring Expert at Cardinal Health, on Wednesday, February 11, 2015
This is sometimes a loose requirement dependent upon the position. If you feel that you meet the rest of the recommended qualifications then I would encourage you to apply. A requirement of 5 years would be pushing it if you only have 1 year of experience but I think there would be more flexibility with the 3-5 year requirement. I would recommend that you thoroughly highlight your skills and qualifications, that are applicable to the position, in your resume and cover letter.
Answered by Cassie, Hiring Expert at The Hershey Company, on Thursday, February 12, 2015
If the job description states that a certain number of years is required, we often make a screening question around that and disqualify anyone who doesn’t meet that requirement. This is not always the case, but it helps us narrow down the candidate pool of qualified candidates. Not saying you shouldn’t apply, but just something to be aware of if you aren’t hearing back or immediately receive an email saying you are no longer being considered. You can include the internship time as part of your experience, but if it still doesn’t get you to the total years on the job description you may want to keep looking. Typically entry level roles may say there is a preferred number of years of experience but not required. For example, we have entry level Retail Sales Representative roles and our qualifications say Bachelor’s degree preferred, but if no degree than HS diploma and 3 years of experience required.
Answered by Steve, Hiring Expert at Caterpillar Inc., on Friday, February 13, 2015
It would depend on if they list this as a required skill or a desired skill.  If it is desired, I would still apply as there may be aspects or your education or other experience and activities that could off-set their desire for more on-the-job experience.  If it is a required skill, I would still apply, but set your expectations accordingly.

It is key as an upcoming graduate to work closely with your career services department so they can help you identify those companies who truly have opportunities for entry level candidates.  This would include attending on-campus career events and speaking directly with companies who can provide guidance on their applicaiton process and specifically to what positions to apply.  Many companies have entry-level rotational programs to which they hire recent college graduates.  The company contacts can help you with how to apply for these positions.  You can also reach back out to these contacts if you have questions about other job postings.  This will help to avoid confusion about whether a position is open to entry-level candidates. 
Answered by Megan, Hiring Expert at Archer Daniels Midland, on Tuesday, February 17, 2015
If you have had a few internships that relate to the position and your 1 year of experience is also relevant, I would still apply. Some positions are more strict than others in terms of experience requirements, but it is worth a shot to still apply.
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