Technology is changing how we work and collaborate. One of the hottest trends right now is cloud-based team collaboration tools like Hipchat and Slack, which are sweeping the market. There are indications that these types of tools will replace email as the primary tool for workplace communication.

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Slack was launched in 2013, and Hipchat launched in 2010. In a short period of time, the number of companies using these tools has grown exponentially. In four years, Slack has grown to 5 million daily active users and a $3.8 billion valuation. These tools have been so popular that Microsoft and Google are getting into the game as well.

The perks of these cloud-based collaboration tools include a great mobile experience, private and public channels that you can drop in and out of as you need, the ability to search across channels and discussions, integrations with other tools like Degreed, calling, video chat, and even screen sharing.

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Some say that these types of tools will bring the end to email. And more than just email, features like file sharing, screen sharing, calling, and video chat mean that these tools are becoming the center of all work-related activity. Some companies even tout the use of these tools as a workplace perk.

But, if there’s no more email, how are you going to get that awesome Today’s Learning email from Degreed with all those personalized recommendations tailored to your needs and interests? Well, we have good news. Degreed offers integrations with both Hipchat and Slack.

Once you enable the Slack or Hipchat integration on Degreed, these tools immediately begin notifying you when you receive a recommendation in Degreed. Each morning, you’ll see your Today’s Learning list, five items of personalized content just for you, delivered in Slack or Hipchat.

The integration also allows you to scroll through a list of all your Degreed recommendations and Today’s Learning in one place.

Takeaways

Cloud-based collaboration tools, like Hipchat and Slack, are becoming the center of all workplace activity including, messaging, calling, file sharing, video chat, and as an integration point for other enterprise tools. Stay on top of this trend by leveraging the Degreed integration with Slack and Hipchat.

Contact your client experience partner for details on how to enable these integrations for your organization.

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Our teachers are given incredible responsibility – to grow the minds of our future leaders. And at some point, you may have wondered, how do these selfless individuals get trained for such a big task? It may seem obvious – a college degree and ongoing certifications. But you might be surprised to find out that “most states don’t have certification for computer science so most teachers in K12 have no education in computer science,” shared Mark Nelson, Ph.D., and Executive Director for the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA).

Despite the demand from the larger economy, “fewer than 10% of schools offer a computer science program,” added Dr. Nelson. This means that many computer science teachers actually come from different disciplines – math, science, continuing tech education such as business or IT, even gym and Spanish.

So how are they finding the resources they need to be effective computer science teachers when some have had little to no training in this space?

Many come to CSTA, a membership organization that supports and promotes the teaching of computer science and other computing disciplines at the K-12/pre university level. Recently, Degreed partnered with CSTA to create the first-of-its-kind professional development (PD) platform for K-12 computer science teachers, known as the Continuing Professional Development Pipeline (CPD Pipeline).

The CPD Pipeline is designed to address a key challenge in K-12 computer science education: growing the pool of teachers who are both competent and confident in teaching computer science concepts and practices.

“In capability and philosophy, Degreed and CSTA were a match,” commented Dr. Nelson. “But what struck us was the initial conversations with Degreed made us rethink the whole situation. Our problem wasn’t in providing training, it was a workforce development problem. We needed to make sure our workforce was continually learning, growing and had the skills that matched the current workforce.”

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With a new sense of purpose, CSTA wanted a solution that could supply teachers with 5 core learning components:

1)        self-assessments of skills, interests, and experience

2)        personalized PD roadmaps to guide the process

3)        digital badging, with support from Badgr;

4)        link to the computer science community to connect with other teachers, tackle challenges and celebrate wins; digital portfolios to showcase PD and manage career paths.

“We are proud and excited for the opportunity to partner with CSTA to transform the way K12 computer science teachers access and benefit from meaningful and relevant Professional Development programs,” shared David Blake, CEO and co-founder of Degreed. “In leveraging Degreed, CSTA will be able to help any number of teachers advance their professional development and certification in computer science, in turn, giving even more students access to the information and knowledge needed to build their own skills and expertise.”

While CSTA is excited about the user-friendly environment and learning pathways provided by Degreed, Dr. Nelson is inspired by what the future could bring. “This could be a new way to teacher certification – this could be huge in terms of rethinking how certification happens in K12,” he said.

We thank CSTA for their dedication to skill development and the future – for all they are doing to educate our teachers and for the significant role they play in bettering the futures of our students.

Interested in becoming a creator of technology instead of just a consumer? Check out the CPD Pipeline here. And if you’re an Association interested in driving member engagement and creating your own learning pathways on any subject,  Degreed can help.

 

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Career development is more complex than it’s ever been. There’s no longer a straight ladder with prescribed steps. Employees are changing jobs at a record rate, and the change can now be lateral, diagonal, up or down, and jobs that require new skills are popping up all the time. 91% of Millennials expect to stay in their current job for 3 years or less, which means they will have 15-20 different jobs over the course of their career.

Here are three ways Degreed helps today’s workforce target their development across the roles, skills and learning they need for the jobs they currently have and want in the future.

  1. More relevant learning. Traditional approaches to development rely on conventional tools of the trade – things like classes, courses, and competencies, which are rarely reinforced, often forgotten or inconsistently applied. Which means lots of waste; 45% of L&D-led learning is wasted. All that wasted time, money and effort add up fast – more than $24m a year for every 10,000 employees for a typical Fortune 500 company [CEB]. To make learning more relevant, you need tools that target learning at the skill level. Degreed connects learning to skills, and skills to roles, giving individuals and organizations the ability to identify what skills they have, what skills they need, and the pathway to bridge the two.
  2. More self-directed learning and coaching. By a 3.5 to 1 margin, people tell us they believe their own self-directed learning is more effective in helping them be successful at work than the training provided by their employers. Degreed connects all the best learning experiences, both internal corporate resources and the world’s largest collection of professional learning content – making it easier than ever to promote a self-directed learning and a learning culture. In addition to self-directed learning, Degreed facilitates the touch points between managers and employees so conversations around development can happen more easily.
  3. More options to enable the lattice approach to career development. Gone are the days of the corporate ladder. Ladder careers had one direction of growth. The lattice career path moves laterally, diagonally and down as well as up. Skills are relevant and common to many job roles, in ways that are not always linear or obvious to the individual, and to the organization. By tracking at the skill level, individuals are able to see career progressions based on the skills they are strongest in and map those to the roles they are also qualified for. Degreed can help employees understand the pieces of parts of the role, help to educate people on what skills are needed for specific roles and then provide them the learning they need to achieve those skills.

Takeaway

When you search in Degreed for a topic like “leadership”, you’ll not only get connected to content like articles but also specific pathways, job roles, and groups where those skills are relevant. You’ll also be able to follow people who have accumulated expertise in those skills and browse providers with content that’s been tagged as relevant. Clicking on roles, like “new manager”, for example, will highlight specific pathways, mentors, and content and related to those roles.

Degreed is a professional development platform that helps organizations and people target learning at their skills gaps — however and wherever they build those skills. Degreed integrates everything your people need to build their skills – internal and external systems, content and experts, including the world’s largest collection of free and low-cost open learning resources – so it can all work better together. Your team can curate, personalize and measure it all. And they can discover, share and track all learning happening across the organization, all in one place.

Interested in practicing a more targeted development plan at your organization based on roles and skills? For more information, contact Degreed.

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Mobile devices now account for nearly 2 of every 3 minutes spent online, and 72% of workers say they do at least some of their learning on a smartphone or tablet [Degreed, How the Workforce Learns].

This is good news for organizations who are making the most of this trend. Degreed has recently released substantial improvements to its mobile app, bringing the native iOS and Android experience more in-line with the functionality of Degreed’s web application – making it even easier for L&D to make learning an everyday habit.

Here are 5 reasons to get excited about the Degreed mobile app.

  1. Get credit for everything you learn while on the go

This is one of my favorite things about the Degreed mobile app. As soon as you install the Degreed app, you can get credit for what you’re learning from other apps, like online videos and articles, and podcasts you listen to. Simply share these items with the Degreed app to get credit, save the item for later, or recommend it to someone else.

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  1. Full search and browse

Run a full search of your organization’s internal catalog or search Degreed’s library of 3m+ external resources – both from inside the mobile app.

  1. Complete profile available

You can get the complete profile view for your own profile or see others’ profiles from the mobile app. You can see items you completed or the completed items of those you follow. You can also modify your learning interests to further personalize the experience in Degreed.

  1. Organization branding

You can now customize both the Degreed site and the mobile app for your organization.

  1. Notifications to stay informed

The Degreed mobile app supports push notifications for recommendations, which can be configured by the user. Push notifications will appear even when the app is closed.

Takeaway

Nowadays, having a mobile-enabled learning solution is critical. Check out the Degreed mobile app for IOS or Android, or get the mobile experience by just loading the Degreed site from any device, and start getting credit for everything you learn, no matter where or how you learn it.

 

 

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Purchasing an enterprise learning solution like Degreed, is a high-consequence decision most companies only make once every five to ten years, so how do you justify the purchase of something like Degreed to your CFO?

Here are four ways Degreed is a positive return on your investment:

1. Improves learning team productivity  

Degreed offers several tools for leader-led and automated curation. To see the complete list, visit 5 ways to curate learning with Degreed.

Degreed pathways, a curated collection of content from any source, can be built in as little as 20 minutes, or 8-12 hours for advanced competencies. This is a huge time saving when compared to the days and weeks it takes to build a custom course from scratch.

Don’t take our word for it. Tenaris uses Degreed’s curation tools and leverages subject matter experts to combine current content and add curated materials to create a broader learning experience.

And when Mastercard rolled out Skype for Business, instead of rolling out a custom course that would have taken 2 people at least a week to create, they curated a pathway in a matter of hours. If you apply this recipe to all of your generic learning needs, that gives your team a lot more time to spend creating custom content for topics that will move the needle in your business.

2. Improves end-user productivity

Content is everywhere and workers are overloaded. Continuous learning is now a requirement for today’s workforce to stay competitive, but who has the time?

We need simple, faster ways to find the content we need, when we need it. Degreed will save your employees time and energy searching for the learning they need to target their development. Degreed does this through personalized learning recommendations, and its ability to connect all the best learning experiences regardless of source or format. The best way to prove this point to your CFO is to demo Degreed’s universal search in action.

Intel’s Director of Digital Platform for Learning, Tim Quinlan, did just that. He told the audience at Degreed’s LENS a story of how he justified the purchase of Degreed to his CFO. “When she asked me how we calculate ROI for this thing, I asked her the same thing. I said, “Tell me something you’re interested in learning about.”

She said raspberry pi, a microcontroller. Tim’s response was “try to find it in our current system.” First, Intel’s CFO tried searching in the LMS, and didn’t find anything. Next, she tried searching in Google, which returned some ads and a product review. Then she tried Degreed. Degreed’s universal search returned several items, including a video introduction to Raspberry Pi from Lynda. And because Degreed offers single sign on, she could access the Lynda video with one click. The Degreed search saved her several minutes to find the learning she was interested in. Now multiply the minutes saved, by the number of searches done each week by each employee, by 100,000 people at Intel, which results in some serious time savings.

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3. Reduces IT overhead  

A special interest to the CFO, Degreed helps reduce IT overhead in several ways. Degreed offers a fast, simple implementation process in the cloud, and can reduce IT costs associated with ongoing maintenance and future learning implementations. These days, learning happens all over the place. If you’re part of a large organization you probably have at least one LMS, perhaps multiple. You likely have content from multiple content providers. You might also have Sharepoint or other custom portals to help employees find all of these resources.

Degreed can simplify all of this with one unified access point with integrations to all the learning in your organization and remove the need for custom portals.

One Degreed customer had 200 custom learning portals, which was becoming increasingly difficult for IT to manage, and cost prohibitive. By purchasing Degreed, they were able to offer employees one central location for all learning and significantly reduce IT costs. And because Degreed is a Saas solution with a simple, streamlined implementation process, it is a much easier platform to administer and maintain.

4. Streamlines vendor management

Are you spending a ton of money on content to find it only being used by a fraction of employees? Are you spending a ton of IT resources to onboard new content providers? Degreed already has integrations with most of the top content providers, streamlining the implementation hurdles of incorporating new content vendors into your organization’s learning ecosystem, while reducing the burden on your IT staff.

Degreed’s ongoing monitoring of content usage can assist you in future licensing decisions – allowing your org, and the CFO, to get the best bang for your content buck. From within Degreed, you can see analytics across all content providers (both internal and external), and you can see not only what people are taking, but also what subjects they are searching for. Now, when you go to make a content purchase or create a custom course, you are empowered to make better decisions and purchase the content that employees actually need and are using for their jobs. And you can always leverage the large selection of free and low-cost learning available in Degreed out-of-the-box.

Takeaways

These are just a few tips to help make the case with your CFO. There are a lot of other reasons to buy Degreed, including, improved employee engagement and user experience, better learning culture, more insights into learning, and a better tool for onboarding, sales enablement, leadership development, and more. If you have other tips, we’d love to hear them.

To learn more about Degreed, visit get.degreed.com/business

I’m a tagger and you should be too.

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Tags are merely labels used to identify things.

In the simplest form, tags are things like the sticker labels your grandfather used in his garage or the DIY labels your partner now organizes with. In terms of technology, many applications and software use metadata or social tags to further enhance our browsing experiences. Meta tags (short descriptions added to each web page) are used by search engines to help improve the relevance and quality of search results.

The ability to tag your experiences is now available on most websites and applications. For example, on Facebook, you tag people in your posts, as well as the location and date. This improves the search on Facebook and allows you to sort and filter posts later. The proliferation of hashtags on Twitter have helped make the site the phenomenon it is today, and you can now see hashtags used everywhere in social media, including Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Google+ and Pinterest. The use of hashtags can connect conversations across social media sites.

Here are three reasons you should start making tagging a habit:

#1 – Improved User Experience – Tagging makes the application you are using smarter, which creates a better user experience for others. This means better search results and a more personalized experience.

#2 – Increasing Eminence – Tagging content is a gift to the creator, author or owner of the content. It helps further brand the subject matter and allow others to find it easier.  Creating a personal habit of tagging will also help define your areas of interest; creating eminence for you as well.

#3 – Save Time – Indexing your own content will save you time later. How many times have you looked for something that you previously consumed and just wish it was easier to find? Tagging shortcuts your search by having content indexed with more keywords to find it again later.

It takes only seconds to tag content. Depending on the application, it might be called metadata, keywords, tags, categories, labels, topics, social tags, hashtags, or something similar. Take the extra 20 seconds and make it a habit. There are no right or wrong tags. Use synonyms and similar words that could lead someone to the right content.

Don’t forget to follow the keywords and tags when applications provide this option. Tagging and following will quickly hook you into others that are giving back in this way and the quality of your findings will be immediately enhanced.

Takeaways

In case you are new to tagging, here are three easy ways to get started:

  1. Tag your photos and posts in Facebook with people, dates, and locations.
  2. Hashtag your posts everywhere in social media: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, Instagram, Google+, and Pinterest.
  3. Tag all of your learning in Degreed.

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To learn more about tagging and personalization in Degreed visit get.degreed.com.

Authored by: Mike Makis and Sonja Schurig of Degreed

To start, a glimpse into my family’s daily learning ritual. 

My family has a daily learning ritual that started when my kids were very young. I was in a graduate program, so everyday, I would come home from school and tell my kids what I had learned that day. They soon anticipated this conversation and started asking me, “What did you learn at school today?”

I progressed through the program, graduated and got a job. As I sat down at the dinner table after my first day of work, my 4 year old daughter asked, “What did you learn at school today, Dad?” I told her that I didn’t go to school anymore – I now go to work. She responded, “Oh … so … what did you learn at work today?”

Her question caught me off-guard. I thought to myself, “Well, it was work, so I worked … I’m not really learning anymore, I’m producing.” But then I realized I’d learned more at my first day of work than any single day in school. I ended up sharing what I learned about being a new employee, about company culture, about my new coworkers, and about the job I would be doing.

Every day at dinner since then, my children have asked “Dad, what did you learn at work today?”

I love two things about this ritual:

  1. I pay more attention to my learning because because I know I’ll be asked about it at dinner
  2. I am able to share some good lessons with my children

Using Degreed to Supercharge your Learning

Degreed helps you record your answer to the question: “What did you learn?”

You can add a learning note when you complete an item on the site:

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Or when you complete through the Degreed browser button:

 

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When your peers add takeaways, you can see what others are learning.

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So, why take note of what you learned?

Takeaways help you learn more

Real learning is driven by questions. Reviewing is a powerful concept in learning, as is personal application. Thinking about what you learn(ed) provides space for both.

Takeaways support retention

It’s sad to me how many times I think about what I learned after I read an article and I come up blank. I have to scan the article again, extract a meaningful quote or theme. Write down something I’m going to do differently or research more. And when I see that article again in the future, I have a wonderful summary of an important insight.

Takeaways improve collaboration

When I see articles and videos with a takeaway from someone I know, it fuels my learning. I have a chance to see a trusted review of what I’m about to learn. Sometimes that is enough, and I choose to move on. Other times it makes me want to learn more, so I dig in. This isn’t just about a summary. It’s getting to the essence of learning.

So, what did you learn? Click the button below to add this article to Degreed!

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