The eligibility criteria need to be fulfilled; otherwise your application cannot be considered.
Regarding the essential selection criteria:
- if they are quantitative – for e.g. we ask at least 5 years of experience in something and you got only 1 year – then, you can assume that the Selection Committee will consider those applicants who have at least the 5 years required. However,
- if it’s a qualitative selection criterion that you doubt or might underestimate, you may consider applying and let the selection panel to assess it.
As a rule, the candidates invited further for the selection procedure, fulfil all the eligibility and the essential selection criteria.