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The process of becoming an SCQF Inclusive Recruiter is simple and there is no cost. 

The qualifications landscape in Scotland has changed significantly over the last decade. The SCQF is Scotland's national qualifications framework and provides a way of recognising, describing and comparing the difficulty and notional time taken to achieve a whole range of qualifications and learning programmes. In addition to mainstream qualifications, the SCQF also contains vocational and skills-based qualifications, and learning programmes developed and delivered in the workplace or community.  

How does SCQF Inclusive Recruiter Work?

The aim of SCQF Inclusive Recruiter is to help employers understand that many different qualifications have the same worth and to encourage the use of SCQF Levels in the recruitment process to offer clarity around skills and experience.

In this challenging climate it’s even more important to put the right person with the right skills in the right job.

93% of qualifications on the SCQF at Level 6 are NOT Highers

Why should SCQF levels be included in recruitment? 

When recruiting staff, how you specify the level of skill or competence that you need applicants to have is important. Job adverts often ask for applicants to have a 'degree or equivalent', or a specific number of Highers or equivalent.  Understanding what that ‘equivalent’ might be is essential to maximising the range and diversity of potential applicants.  For example, a Higher sits at level 6 on the SCQF, however 93% of qualifications at level 6 on the SCQF are not Highers. By using the SCQF levels in your recruitment processes instead of specific qualifications, you can significantly widen your pool of applicants, who may have a variety of qualifications or skills and experience at the required level, ensuring that employers get the best range of suitable candidates for their roles.


How do I know what SCQF Level to ask for?

It is very important to recruit people with the right level of skills and experience for your job role, and to also recognise that some people may not have qualifications at the required level but may have a wealth of equivalent skills and experience. Our Employer Guide and Levelling Tool can help you to properly level your job role and also recognise existing skills. Our Know Your Level – Employers tool can also help you through this process.

Inclusive Recruiter Wall

See what organisations have already made the commitment to use SCQF Levels in the Recruitment Process.

Examples of Good Practice


  • This role would suit someone working at SCQF Level 6
  • You will be educated to SCQF Level 8 or have relevant skills and experience in …
  • Qualifications or skills and experience at SCQF Level 9 (e.g. Degree, Graduate Diploma)


Not Inclusive

  • Minimum 3 Highers
  • Qualified to HND level in a relevant discipline
  • Degree or Equivalent

Benefits to Employers

  • Access to a diverse talent pool
  • Confidence that you can satisfy your skills needs
  • Bring new skills and knowledge into your business
  • A better understanding of the broad range of Scottish qualifications and how they compare
  • Compliance with government policy e.g 2010 Equality Act


Benefits to Individuals

  • A clearer understanding of the skills required for the job
  • Confidence that you have the skills to make a successful application (saving time when searching vacancies)
  • Confidence that you can meet employer expectations
  • Assurance that the employer has up-to-date knowledge of qualifications 
  • Recognition by the employer of a range of relevant qualifications, both academic and vocational

We are building a library of case studies from our Inclusive Recruiters - view our collection to date.


The Process

The process of becoming an SCQF Inclusive Recruiter is simple and there is no cost. We will talk you though how to

  • Recognise and compare qualifications
  • Benchmark your job roles to the SCQF
  • Recognise skills and experience at different SCQF levels
  • Word your job adverts to attract the widest range of candidates with the right skills for your role

Both organisations then sign a Memorandum of Understanding setting out their responsibilities and we send you the SCQF Inclusive Recruiter logo for use on your website and recruitment packs. We will also provide wider staff training and continued support as required. 

Simply complete the form below or contact us on info@scqf.org.uk

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