•   Article   •   4 mins

A Message From Degreed’s CEO: Year in Review and A Look Ahead

To our clients and partners,

On behalf of the entire Degreed team, thank you for an amazing 2018, and for your continued partnership. What we’ve accomplished together in just a short period of time, is incredible. It was just five years ago that a handful of Degreed’s early employees were engaging with many of you for the first time to share our vision for where learning and skill building had to go. That thesis was based on three pillars:

  1. Individual ownership of lifelong learning
  2. A deep partnership with businesses to put employees’ needs at the center of a next-generation learning, skills, and career platform
  3. Working together to create a common “language” for skills

Over the last few years, we have made meaningful progress on all three aspects of that vision.

As we begin 2019, Degreed is fortunate enough to be engaged with over 200 clients across the globe.  We’ve worked with many of you for years, and others are just beginning your relationship with us. Regardless of how long we’ve been partners, we’re deeply grateful for all that you have done to push us to build something great.

With that said, I want to take a moment to recap 2018 and share what we will accomplish in the year ahead.

2018 Milestones

  • We began the year by raising $42m in venture capital to triple our pace of innovation and growth.
  • We continue to advance the roadmap of our industry-leading Learner Experience Platform with major enhancements tied directly to your feedback. This includes a flexible curation framework — to contextualize learning and skills development through pages, roles, and skills plans — a richer learner home experience to increase engagement and connected learning opportunities, user-generated video content capability, alignment of the mobile app and browser experience, and meaningful insights on skills development and content curation for individuals and organizations.
  • We connected like-minded thought leaders seeking to advance the corporate learning technology experience and facilitated peer-connection forums in numerous locations. As part of that, we have expanded and revamped both our global product council and our client advisory board.
  • In partnership with many of you, we launched Skill Review to easily create structured data on your workforce’s skill sets, and make that data inter-operable between learning, HR and other systems.
  • We joined forces with Pathgather, the only other company in the space that shared our commitment to innovation, product excellence, and customer success. Pathgather’s customers are some of the most impressive and innovative teams I’ve met. In just the first two months, many of Pathgather’s best features began to show up on Degreed. Together, we’re building something truly great and lasting in this industry.
  • We continue to expand our team, product and support capabilities around the globe with four offices worldwide. Around 10% of our 300+ employees are now located outside the United States. Canada, Europe, Latin America, and Asia are among our fastest growing markets
  • In October, we hosted nearly 400 of you, from 35 states and 12 countries, at our two-day client summit and conference, LENS, in New York City.
  • We made major investments in all of our Client Success and support capabilities — technical, client engagement, client success, learning, and marketing services — so we can continue to improve how we serve you all along your journeys. This team, which represents our commitment to your success, now accounts for 25% of our company headcount.
  • Along with our clients Associa, Airbnb, and Mastercard, we were awarded the Gold-level Brandon Hall Excellence in Technology award.
  • With the help of numerous clients, our CLO Kelly Palmer and Co-Founder and Executive Chairman, David Blake, wrote and published The Expertise Economy.
  • To better support scaling and inspire innovation, we grew our business, our client base, and our team by more than 100%.
  • Most importantly, these investments are working. We ended 2018 with a Net Promoter Score of 62, which is world class not just for software vendors, but for any company in any industry.

The Year Ahead

2018 was an incredible year by any measure, but we still have a lot of work to do.

  • Our biggest priority is continuing to listen to you, our customers. This means continuing to incorporate your feedback and investing in the areas where you’ve pushed us. For starters, we kicked off 2019 by creating new, fully-staffed product and innovation teams focused on four key areas:
    1. Learner Experience and Engagement: To use the vast amount of data we collect to improve our personalization and learner experience.
    2. Native Apps and Extensions: To more deeply tie learning into the flow of work, which creates a more seamless native experience.
    3. Reporting and Insights: To help organizations better identify skill gaps, and provide more meaningful analytics and data on learning activity, content utilization, and skill progression
    4. Skill Measurement and Career Development: To help employees measure their skill levels, identify gaps, and progress in their careers through well-defined paths.
  • We will also continue investing heavily in our user experience (UX), data science, and AI capabilities, global/multi-language support, search, and integrations and APIs. The goal is to provide a product that supports clients as they build and reinforce a more vibrant and productive learning culture through a consumer-grade experience in an enterprise learning application.
  • We will work in partnership with you to get deeper integrations into your broader HCM and work systems to make your entire learning, performance, and career ecosystem work better, together. We’ll also work together to use skill data to help you accelerate business transformation, and close critical skill gaps.
  • Lastly, we’re creating more opportunities for our ever-expanding client base to engage and learn from each other — while continuing to push our roadmap — through over 60 events around the globe. This includes LENS 2019, which will be in Austin, Texas, in October.

My Ask of You

We at Degreed couldn’t be more excited for the year ahead. Together, we have an incredible opportunity to accelerate people’s development and career growth. To create something truly innovative and valuable that helps them build their skills, become truly continuous, lifelong learners, and unlock tremendous value for themselves and your companies, over the entirety of their careers.

Please continue to push us and hold us accountable for doing what we set out to do. I’m looking forward to seeing or meeting as many of you as I can this year. But in the meantime, my personal email address is below. Please feel free to use it.

Thank you again, on behalf of all of us, for a 2018 we won’t soon forget.


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