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Are skills directly proportional to number of years of experience?

I was just rejected as a candidate for a job because I do not show the number of years of experience they require. They want an intermediate software developer (between 3 and 7 years of experience) and I currently have about 2 years of experience. At the place I currently work, I can say that I outperform many people with 5+ years of experience. I do not say that my programs are perfect, but my skills in object oriented programming are light-years ahead of the rest of my team. I tend to follow SOLID principles and design patterns when necessary, and no one on my team has ever heard of these things. Also, I am very proficient in the technologies they require for the job.

I know this may sound like I am over estimating myself, but I am not. I read a lot of books on the subject and spend many hours at home to dig deeper to increase my skills.

I am very confident that I would be a perfect fit for the job and that I could easily be as good as any other candidate with the appropriate experience if they give me a change to go to an interview.

So here I go with my questions :

  • How to overcome the prejudice that I do not have the skills required because I have not the right number of years of experience ?
  • Are skills directly proportional to years of experience ?