Crossroads | Unconventional Routes to Take After A and O Levels

Updated: Sep 15

Many graduates will choose to pursue school prestige, but they're missing a crucial step here. Let's take a pause to think about how you can make the best out of this downtime to figure out not only how you want to make a living, but also how to make a life.

Let's first look at how things are changing in Singapore

Do qualifications and grades matter?

Let’s be honest. Before an individual’s job experience becomes rich enough to shine on its own, qualifications and grades play a vital role as pre-qualifiers. In essence, they do matter (to a certain degree) in helping people get one foot through the door.

Though, it’s helpful to note that more companies and higher learning institutions are beginning to look for other ways to assess applicants beyond their O-Level scores. That’s because the focus is now shifted to their latest academic qualifications in A-Levels or polytechnic grade point average (GPA).

Academic qualifications provide a tangible metric for which employers can reasonably gauge an applicant’s personal and professional bandwidth. As Managing Director of Robert Half Singapore Matthieu Imbert-Bouchard puts it succinctly, “Academic transcripts indicate the intellectual aptitude of an applicant. They are also reflective of the individual’s diligence, research ability, critical and analytical skills, and project management skills.”

Must I get a university degree?

It depends. The typical route for regulated professions in healthcare, financial, law and engineering sectors generally requires a higher