a means to an end
means to an end
The way that one achieves a specific objective, which is not an objective or ultimate goal itself. Having that unpaid internship was just a means to an end—it helped me get my foot in the door at the company, where I now work full-time!
a means to an enda thing that is not valued or important in itself but is useful in achieving an aim.
End and means are compared or contrasted in several proverbial sayings, for example the end justifies the means (see end) and he who wills the end wills the means .