A long time back I had answer this million dollar question in a career advice forum (c-sharpcorner.com) and not surprised to see the latest Feb'2015 research survey report of Stack Overflow's "2015 Developer Survey". This survey reveals that -
"Only 48% of Software Developer have a degree in computer science."
It is widely acceptable fact that day by day, getting education is becoming easier and global. Nation barrier has been broken and there are many international universities providing global education worldwide. But still people get engage themselves in jobs after just completing their graduations rather continuing for masters and research education. And from these working professionals, there are very few who further continues their education to upgrade their educational qualifications. Though this is not the case of all segment but mainly in IT arena.
Does Software development(IT) companies consider undergraduates?
What are the minimum qualification(s) required to get a job in software programming industry?
There is no predefined benchmark but Graduation is the minimum required qualification to be in bigger enterprises for software programming profile.
As you are aware, day by day education level is becoming higher and thus employers set their minimum eligibility criteria. Most of MNCs even set some rules like no educational gap, no distance/open mode education, certain percentage through-out 10th to graduation and many more.
Some non-MNCs who not bother about one's educational background but technical skills may hire you. But believe me, they will pick you only if you very sound on technical skill and fit in their pay package. Now a days higher and good academic qualification holders are also in queue and available at feasible price. As a common human tendency, everyone wish to have cream manpower at minimal cost and this can create a big challenge for you.
Be ready with latest trends and try to get settled without thinking MNCs and other giants. Once you start, rest fruit will automatically become nearer to you. :)