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Learning Experience

Just the Beginning

Learning Experience

Admittedly, I’m somewhat of a newb to the world of podcasts. Though I have been a fan of audiobooks for years, I took my time getting into podcasts. Last year when everyone was listening to Serial while they ate their cereal, I was going strong on my serial habit of sleeping in and skipping my cereal.

Six months ago I finally caved and decided to give Serial a try. I finished season 1 in a week. It wasn’t hard for me to understand why it has shattered podcast records. And I only know that fact because of an interview I listened to last week with Ira Glass… on a podcast. I’m sincerely grateful for Sarah Koenig opening the door for me to a new avenue of learning. Once I was done with Serial, I couldn’t just stop. I began exploring other podcasts. Now I consume at least 4-6 hours of podcast content per week.

After I had worked my way through the most recent episodes of the podcasts I was familiar with, I got the the point where I had to start branching out and searching for new content. As I tried other podcasts out, I realized that liking one episode of a certain podcast didn’t always mean that I would enjoy all of the other episodes.

Originally, I just browsed for new stuff by scrolling through the top picks list on the iTunes Podcasts app. But that was time consuming. After trying out the search functionality on the app, I wished I could search a little better. I decided to look for other resources that I could use to further dial in my selections. Turns out there are some pretty good websites/apps out there to help you do just that. Here are a few of the best ones I’ve found.

 

Player.fm

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First up is Player.fm. In terms of topic-based searches, I probably like this one the best. For example, just look how it breaks out the general topics into much more specific areas. Searching through those areas not only yields a list of the top podcasts relevant to the topic, but also the most recent episodes from any podcast that talks about the topic. You can run this app right on your phone (Android only) for free. As an iPhone user, I just enjoy using the search features on the website. My favorite part is the “play later” functionality, which allows you to save individual episodes instead of having to subscribe to the whole podcast and then remember where the episode was.

 

NPR Podcast Directory

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The NPR directory only searches and references podcasts that are produced by NPR. This American Life, which is an NPR podcast, basically invented the system by which most podcasts produce content today. So it’s safe to say they know their stuff. NPR owns a pretty good share of the podcast market. You’d be hard pressed not to find something you enjoy from an NPR podcast. The site also has recommended picks and category search functions.

 

Learn Out Loud

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This site might not have the most elegant design, but it still has a ton of functionality. You can search through all kinds of categories and topics to find content that is interesting and new. A lot of content is free, but you can also access their premium content for a fee. And they don’t stop at podcasts, how do you feel about free audiobooks?

 

Stitcher

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If you’re a frequent podcast listener, you’ve probably heard of Stitcher. But for those who might not know, Stitcher is a solid way to find and curate podcast content. The name Stitcher refers to the app’s ability to “stitch” together multiple shows into a customized station playlist—kinda like Pandora for podcasts. You can also try pre-set stations that are curated by Stitcher’s editors. One of the things I like is how it tracks the movement of the top podcasts. Those insights into how a podcast is trending can help you find great content that you may have overlooked otherwise.

 

Audiosear.ch

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Audiosear.ch has some really awesome visual graphics that help you understand various metrics of current podcasts. For example, there is a frequency graph that shows you who the most mentioned people are in their podcast database. And if you are curious about how many podcasts Macauley Culkin is mentioned in, you can find that in their People Index. There is also a feature called PodLikeThat that suggests podcasts that are similar to your favorite podcasts and podcast episodes. For those who might want random podcast suggestions, there is also a Pod-A-Day email you can sign up for to get a new podcast in your inbox daily.

 

Hopefully at least one of these websites/apps will help you more easily find new podcast content that fits your taste! And don’t forget, you can track all your podcast listening on your Degreed profile!

 

 

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Kelly Palmer, LinkedIn’s former Chief Learning Officer, recently joined Degreed to take on the newly created role as our own CLO. Kelly adds to a long roster of A-list hires from across the corporate learning, enterprise software and consumer edtech spectrum. We are incredibly excited to have her on the team and you should be, too. Here’s why…

Degreed is growing fast. We’ve already built a brilliant, diverse team of 120 designers, developers, engineers, product managers and customer success professionals to support our clients. And we’re just getting started. Bringing Kelly onboard is another meaningful investment in making sure Degreed’s talented team stays sharp and ready for more.

Equally important, Degreed is revolutionizing how enlightened employers build skills and fuel careers. Our customers – 100 of the world’s most sophisticated pioneering learning, talent and HR leaders (and counting) – want a partner who can provide more than a beautiful new technology. They’re also asking for guidance and support as they reengineer how they organize and operate their own teams.

Kelly, a recognized innovator and thought leader, is uniquely qualified to advise and coach other L&D leaders as they design and execute novel digital learning strategies. So she’s also here to help Degreed’s clients, companies like MasterCard, Microsoft, EMC and Xerox (and our friends in the learning and HR community at large) build the capabilities they need to adapt to the demands of today’s hyperkinetic workforce. She’s not alone, though.

Combined, Degreed’s highly skilled team has decades of experience building many of the leading brands in corporate learning, enterprise software and consumer education technology: Workday, Cornerstone OnDemand, SAP SuccessFactors, Microsoft, Skillsoft/SumTotal, Harvard Business Publishing, Bersin by Deloitte, IBM, MIT, Chegg, Pluralsight, Instructure and Lynda.com.

We’ve come together at Degreed to help you reinvent your learning experience. This is about more than just building an awesome new platform for developing and discovering workers’ skills. It’s about empowering people to enrich their lives, and enabling organizations to amplify their performance, by connecting all the world’s best education, training and lifelong learning resources. So all of those learning experiences can work better together for everyone.

Don’t take our word for it, though. If you’re interested in learning more about how Kelly and Degreed can help make all kinds of learning matter for your organization and your people, check out these resources from CLO magazine, Bigthink and Forbes. Then connect with Kelly on LinkedIn, and follow her on Twitter.

You can also track and follow everything Kelly is learning on Degreed.

The Challenge

Purch is a digital content and commerce company, servicing more than 100 million customers worldwide, making it the largest publisher in the tech vertical, according to comScore. Purch prides itself on its company culture, but did not have a strong learning culture. Like many companies, they wanted a learning culture that could improve employee engagement. More than just training employees, Purch wanted to promote employee progress and develop employees.

Purch hired Juli Weber early in 2015, with a mandate to build a learning culture, and implement a learning tool, like a Learning Management System (LMS). To better understand their learning needs, Juli conducted a Learning Needs Assessment. She sent a survey company-wide asking employees a list of questions to understand their learning habits, skill needs, and barriers to learning. The results were eye-opening.

When asked what was more effective in helping them to be successful in their professions, 73% of Purch’s employees said self-directed learning was more useful than employer directed training.

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The survey also showed that this self-directed learning was happening all the time – just not through conventional L&D solutions. 24% of employees said they had learned something useful from an article, blog, or video, in the last day. Almost all employees, 92%, had learned something that month.

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Even more shocking: 70% of employees were using Google to find learning first. Almost no one was going to HR for learning resources.

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The Search

Based on that assessment, Juli knew that Purch needed a solution that could empower employees with the autonomy and resources to drive their own learning. The solution needed to meet learners’ needs, not just the organization’s, enabling employees to access learning resources anytime, anywhere. A solution that went beyond merely training employees and actually helped to develop them – facilitating progression to the next job.

Other requirements for the solution included:

  • A diverse set of learning content, at low cost.
  • Integration with Lynda.com, a content provider Purch had already purchased.
  • Enterprise-network integrations, like SSO and HR system synchronization.
  • Social aspects – a tool that encouraged conversations around learning.
  • Gamification – make learning fun, was a very important requirement.
  • Personal reporting for employees and managers so they could track their progress.

“We wanted to create a learning culture that is driven by organic, autonomous, value-added learning activities, sprinkled with social aspects and fun.” Juli says.

The biggest issue with implementing just an LMS is that the LMS came empty. Purch would have to start with a blank slate, and then tell employees to wait while the training department built all the content they needed. As Juli explained, “I had to build all the courses myself, but it doesn’t make sense for me to build a course when there is material out there from trusted sources. “

Why Degreed

Then Purch stumbled upon something new, Degreed. Juli joined a Degreed webinar, and was immediately interested.

A major benefit of Degreed was that it comes with the world’s largest ecosystem of learning content with 250,000 online learning courses from the top content providers, and 3 million informal learning activities from more than 1200 sources. Everything from live, virtual and eLearning courses to videos, MOOCs, bootcamps, articles, books, podcasts, webinars, and more.

Degreed offers engagement tools, like social and gamification to help motivate employees. And, Degreed offers the organization insights to all the learning that is happening – not just the required training.

The Innovation

At one point in the decision making process someone said to Juli, “you know Degreed isn’t an LMS?” Juli’s response – “yeah, that’s the point.“ The early adopters at Purch understood what Degreed was, but there were those that were more resistant to change, that didn’t get it. The learning assessment results that Juli had gathered clearly indicated that this is how people learned. A traditional approach wasn’t going to meet the needs of their employees.

 

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Juli reviewed her options and felt like she was at a turning point. Implementing just an LMS would restrict what learning the organization could provide. She knew it would work for the here and now, but she wanted something that would be innovative and grow as the Purch grew. “I felt that if I went traditional, it would be closing a door.”

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The Impact

Now at Purch, people are learning constantly, and employees can easily track and get recognized for all their learning – the organization now has insights into what people are learning. Degreed is the central hub for all learning in the organization. That includes the articles and videos that can be found on Google, Purch compliance training, the Lynda content the company has purchased, plus a lot more.

Now, when Juli needs to create custom training, she has a better idea of what will drive the greatest impact. “If I’m going to create learning, I only spend time creating learning that really targets the needs.”

And best of all, “Degreed is so simple.” It’s easy for Juli to maintain and “people just use it, and I don’t even need to help them, which gives me time to focus on other things like compliance training. “

And when Juli does create a curriculum, leveraging Degreed results in huge time savings. Traditionally, one hour of classroom training required eight hours of development. With Degreed Pathways, Juli can curate content from the best sources. Two hours of training takes about 2 hours of development time. Now, curriculum development now takes ⅛ of the time.

The time savings is especially important, because Juli has now been promoted to a new role that encompasses both HR and learning and training responsibilities.

The Takeaways

Here are three things you can learn from Purch’s new approach to L&D:

    1. Connect with learners by running your own Learning Needs Assessment. We’ve prepared a Learning Needs Assessment you can use- enter your email in the form below and we’ll deliver it to your inbox.
    2. Create a learning culture that is driven by organic, autonomous, value-added learning activities, sprinkled with social aspects and fun.
    3. Save time and money by curating content instead of buying and building.

Ready to get started with your own Learning Needs Assessment? Enter your email below and we’ll send you the complete case study with a Learning Needs Assessment that features 19 questions that can help you better gauge the needs of your learners.


 

Many of us work on our fitness nearly every day. Imagine trying to run a marathon after taking a jog just once every few months. It’s not going to go well. The same principle applies to learning – your brain needs to “work out” too. We should treat learning the same way we treat exercise- and make it a daily habit.

There are three parallels between learning and fitness, which were presented by Giuseppe Auricchio Executive Director of the Learning Innovation Unit at IESE Business School, during Degreed’s recent Lens event in NYC

 

1. Transformation  by digital technologies.

Both fitness and learning are being transformed by digitalization. Think wearables. Think reading through a powerpoint on your tablet ahead of a sales presentation. Both are things we likely didn’t anticipate before they were invented, and both help us reach new heights.

 

2. It takes many activities to reach that common goal.

Fitness experts say you should vary your fitness routine for maximum results. The same philosophy applies to learning. More than ever, there are a significant amount of options for how you can learn, and employees are combining them to create their own maximum results. Recent research from Degreed reported that nearly 70% learn from peers or by reading articles and blogs every week, and 53% learn from videos in any given week.
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3. You’re never done being healthy and fit, and you should never be done learning.

Both activities should last for a lifetime. Enough said.

When it comes to both  fitness and learning, the right tools are a critical component to creating daily, sustainable habits. Modern technology has gifted us things like beautiful dashboards that show data and growth over time, contextualized reminders (think: time to stand up!), and social tools that let you challenge or share with your friends. These are all things that make us more productive.

But if we take a step back, we can see that this is bigger than new tech, ease of use, multiple modalities. It’s about the new opportunities that all these things together present. The opportunity to grow and make ourselves better on our own. And the reality is, it’s time for corporate learning to follow suit and empower their employees to take learning into their own hands.

 

If you aren’t sure how, Degreed can help you encourage a culture of self-directed learning, with tools to discover, curate, track, measure, and reward all career and lifelong learning activities. Success for both learning and fitness are intrinsically dependent on motivation which can be difficult to sustain. But it’s important that we keep growing and moving forward, setting goals and improving ourselves as people- and those improvements will most certainly come if we can take advantage of, and create, positive daily habits.

computer

It’s not a groundbreaking revelation to say that the world of corporate learning has changed. Information is everywhere: Google, YouTube, blogs, podcasts, Meetup groups, 1000+ eLearning providers, over 600 million websites with more options appearing everyday. All these options have changed how people learn, but traditional L&D tools haven’t evolved to meet those changing needs. 37% of enterprise learning applications are at least seven years old. 64% are at least four years old. [Bersin by Deloitte]. A lot has happened in the last 7 years- the very first iPad was released just 6 years ago in 2010.

If you’re running a corporate learning program, there’s a good chance you’re considering making a change. 38% of enterprise learning leaders are, according to Brandon Hall Group. Over 50% according to Adobe / Frost & Sullivan.

You may know you want to step into the world of digital learning, but without a roadmap, this can feel daunting.

Change in any company is risky. In all large organizations, the implementation of new technology moves at a snail’s pace. You might be lucky to get a new tool up and running in 8-9 months, or longer if you want a solution that integrates multiple technologies. But, there are ways to make this easier and improve success rates.

You need a strategy that will reduce risk, be seen as a positive change in the organization, and cut costs for re-education, integrations, and migrations.

Degreed is changing the way organizations approach corporate learning investments by creating a unified learner experience that extends across all of your learning systems. Degreed can integrate disparate HR and L&D systems quickly and at low cost.

By simplifying the user experience, and connecting people to the right tools and resources at the right time – any format, from any system – Degreed helps to drive meaningful increases in everyday learning activity, from any source.

Degreed can simplify the change management process for future corporate learning initiatives in six important ways:

  1. Simplify the end-user experience. Degreed is the front-end interface for all your organization’s learning. Degreed’s unified search streamlines the user experience by integrating internal systems (such as  LMSs, TMSs and document sharing and collaboration portals) and external training content solutions with the world’s largest collection of free, open and low-cost learning tools. Implementing Degreed allows you to continue to make changes on the back-end (new or upgraded LMS, new content vendors, consolidating SharePoint sites, etc.) without impacting the end user experience. 
  2. Reduce training costs. You won’t need to train users on a new LMS or other learning system because Degreed is the front-end solution that integrates with your LMS and other content providers. Degreed has a simple, intuitive UI that doesn’t require special training.
  3. Streamline the integration of disparate systems. 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.
  4. Improve user adoption. Employees view Degreed as a benefit, which facilitates user adoption. The learner is in control, with all the options at their fingertips. Improved user adoption means more consumption of content, both the external content found in Degreed and internal LMS content.
  5. Reduce implementation time. The RFP and implementation process for an LMS is lengthy, which leaves employees without an engaging learning experience for at least 18 months. Degreed can be up and running in as little as 3 months and provide that learning experience right out of the gate, giving you time to complete your LMS implementation on the backend.
  6. Provide better information for your content buying decisions. Because Degreed tracks all learning (formal and informal), the solution can provide you with data around what content, vendors, and modalities your employees are utilizing so you know where you should (and should not) make content investments. Degreed can also help find lower cost or free resources.

Takeaways:

The world of modern learning has evolved since traditional tools were designed. Degreed is built for the complex world of modern learners, and connects all the existing pieces of the learning infrastructure, including the LMS, to the informal and social learning worlds – with a single user-friendly, learner centric point of access.

Implementing Degreed will take your corporate learning into the future, and reduce the risk and cost for future changes.

For more information visit get.degreed.com

knowledge

Do you know Harry Truman’s middle name? What about the number of the last manned Apollo mission? In the scheme of things, these facts may seem irrelevant, even useless to know. After all, how would knowing the name of the president’s dog make you better off? Well, that all depends on what your definition of ‘better off’ is.

I love this piece of the Degreed manifesto: “There is no single path to expertise. And our success in solving our unique problems depends not upon uniformity, but on our diversity, because our differences and uniqueness make us powerful. Everyone deserves recognition for their expertise, no matter how they got there.”

To some it may be trivial knowledge, but if you are an expert on something as unique as 18th century fashion, you deserve recognition. Who knows when that knowledge may solve a unique problem. In previous articles, I’ve focused mainly on learning that is isn’t super unique. For example, a lot of the focus of learning today is based on the most widely marketable skills like foreign languages, communication, or computer science. However, there is another kind of learning that doesn’t get the same love and attention. It’s a type of learning that admittedly isn’t as marketable as other skills, but can still be relevant.

This other kind of learning produces what can be described as “know-it-all knowledge.” Ken Jennings is the poster child for this kind of knowledge. If you are a fan of the TV game show, Jeopardy!, you know the name Ken Jennings. In 2004, Jennings won Jeopardy! a record 74 times in a row. That takes a ridiculous amount of dedication to know-it-all knowledge.

Don’t Forget

In a TED talk given by Jennings in 2013, he described his style of learning as being “curious about everything” or “universally interested in the world around [him].” It’s almost as if he sees random facts as unique LEGO pieces that he can use to build an imaginary LEGO kingdom of knowledge in his brain. Every new subject is an opportunity to add more pieces to his masterpiece.

To keep all that information accessible, Jennings uses his memory constantly. In fact, he’s the kind of guy who longs for the days when everyone knew phone numbers by memory instead of relying on phones to keep track of them. That’s because he understands that when we stop using our brains to remember things and instead outsource our memory to digital devices, parts of our brain can literally shrink. One of the parts that is most vulnerable to this is the hippocampus.

The main function of the hippocampus in the brain is memory and spatial awareness. Studies have been done that suggest the hippocampus actually shrinks in people who use GPS in their car instead of navigating by memory. One of those studies by the Wellcome Trust Center for Neuroimaging looked at brain scans of taxi drivers and bus drivers. The taxi drivers had more gray matter (that’s a good thing) in the hippocampus than the bus drivers. The difference was that bus drivers follow the same route, while taxi drivers are constantly challenged to know every corner of a city. Substituting brain power for digital crutches can be detrimental to your mental capacities. 

Super Computers

In 1997, a computer developed by IBM named Deep Blue beat a world champion chess player at chess. Not content to stop there, IBM searched for a new challenge that would push further the limits of computer vs. human. In 2004, Ken Jennings’ domination of Jeopardy! piqued the interest of IBM. For the next seven years IBM developed a question answering (QA) computer system aimed at beating Jennings at his own game. They named the computer Watson. In 2011, Watson faced off against Jennings and another elite Jeopardy! contender. Watson defeated them both.

After his defeat, Jennings had the following thought:

What happens when computers are better at knowing and remembering stuff than we are? 

In essence, what’s the point of putting the effort into learning if we have Google on our phones? In answer to that quandary, Jennings arrived at the conclusion that humans still have two advantages over “those who can just Google something.” The advantage of volume and the advantage of time. 

Advantage of Volume

The world is incredibly complex. As Jennings says in his talk, “…the scope of human information is now doubling every 18 months or so.” That is way too much information to have to continually look up. One example he gives to illustrate the importance of learning vs Googling is how we make informed decisions on who to vote for, which is a decision that requires correct judgement in relation to all kinds of different facts and information. As proof, a 2006 National Geographic Literacy Study said that roughly 63% of young adults who vote in presidential elections—a time when it’s obviously very important to understand foreign policy— couldn’t actually find Iraq on a map. In addition, 75% had no idea Indonesia is the largest Muslim country in the world.

In Jennings’ own words “If you can’t do that first step, are you really going to look up the other thousand facts you need to know to make an informed decision on foreign policy? At some point you will give up and just make a less-informed decision.”

Advantage of Time

In 2004, a ten-year-old girl by the name of Tilly Smith was on vacation with her family in Thailand. While they were out enjoying the beach, Smith noticed troubling patterns in the ocean and told her parents that they needed to get off the beach. Only a month prior to their vacation, Smith learned about tsunamis in her geography class. She recognized the signs and informed her family and the lifeguard who was then able to quickly get everyone off the beach.

The advantage of time won’t always be that dramatic. Most of the time it will be something simple like a social situation. Something where you meet someone new or you’re in a job interview and a topic comes up that where you can connect with the other person. Those are the situations where asking someone to wait while you Google facts about their hometown doesn’t really work.

In your pursuit of learning, don’t shy away from learning what you may feel are seemingly useless facts about the world around you. Gather up some know-it-all knowledge. Be curious about everything. And while you’re at it, try turning your GPS off every once in awhile. Your brain will thank you.

Bersin by Deloitte recently reported that better analytics is one of the main buying criteria for new HR solutions, with good reason. The data about what your employees are learning and what they know can add huge value when making decisions for the business. This trend is only gaining more momentum as HR analytics are being used more to make business and talent decisions.

Traditional corporate learning solutions provide metrics for mandatory training, compliance, and courses offered by the LMS. You likely have insights into course enrollment and completion rates, but this is a limited view into the actual learning happening within your organization. Based on the 70:20:10 framework, the metrics offered by your traditional corporate learning solution provide insights into only 10% of the learning happening within the organization. Just imagine what you could accomplish with insights into all the learning happening at your organization.

90% of learning is happening outside of L&D, with no insight into this learning.

Workers are learning all the time and they spend the majority of this time on self-directed learning. Traditional solutions gather metrics for the once-in-while learning happening at the organization, but not the learning happening every day, week, and month.

Learning-in

There are few tools that promise the ability to provide insights into all the knowledge and learning happening in the organization.

The Experience API (xAPI), an open source API in its early stages, promises the ability to track any kind of learning experience [ADL]. API stands for Application Program Interface. It allows one piece of software to talk to another software application. People are moving from SCORM to xAPI because xAPI allows you to collect more data about course usage. xAPI is a buzzword in the industry because of what it promises to offer in the way of insights into learning.

xAPI enabled courses provide more data on courses, but courses are still only a small percentage of the learning happening in your organization. One major hurdle to leveraging xAPI for all the learning happening in your organization is the IT undertaking needed to xAPI enable all of these sources. xAPI depends on other systems to track and send learning experiences to a Learning Record Store (LRS). That means every system in your organization (LMS, wiki, knowledge base, document center, helpdesk system, etc) would need to be xAPI enabled in order to gather data around employee activities in these systems, and you need to maintain an LRS system to collect all that data – a huge IT undertaking.

Another solution, a Saas offering with a turn-key implementation process that requires low IT investment, is Degreed. Degreed is xAPI enabled. It can receive xAPI actions from other systems. Degreed also offers a variety of other tools that provide line of sight into all kinds of learning happening all across your organization, whether those sources are xAPI enabled or not.

Degreed provides insights for all the learning happening in your organization

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Degreed simplifies the management and reporting of all the learning happening at your organization – regardless of source. This gives you insight into everything your employees are learning, every day – both employer-directed and self-directed learning. The reporting of articles, videos, podcasts, books, events, online courses, instructor-led-training, and more can all be compiled in one beautiful dashboard.


reporting

Degreed offers organization-level and group-level reports, and an individual insights page for each employee.

Traditional corporate learning solutions use hours, or seat time, as a unit of measurement for employee learning – stemming from the traditional classroom-based learning approach. But this unit of measurement doesn’t quantify the actual learning happening today. We know from our research  that classroom based training occurs infrequently throughout the year, but employees are learning constantly via online searches, peers, podcasts, books, and other sources.

Degreed is the only enterprise learning solution that can normalize and summarize all learning happening in your organization using the Point System. The science behind the scoring was informed by expert Larry Rosenberger, former CEO of FICO and the man behind the science of the FICO credit score, and David Wiley PhD., a global leader in instructional design and open education.

Interested in gaining real insights into all the learning happening in your organization? Visit get.degreed.com

According to Brandon Hall Group, 61% of corporate learning and development (L&D) leaders think workers should connect with learning resources at least once-a-week to be effective in their jobs. Yet in a poll we conducted with Chief Learning Officer, barely one in four L&D leaders said their employees do that.

To help L&D teams better engage employees, Degreed recently surveyed 512 people to understand how today’s workforce really builds their skills and fuels their careers. The findings, which are summarized in a new report titled, “How the Workforce Learns in 2016”, might make you rethink three common myths about workplace learning.

Myth #1:  Workers don’t have time for learning.

Truth: They will make time to learn, if it fuels their career growth or enriches their lives.

Bersin by Deloitte has reported that 88% of L&D leaders believe employees don’t have (or make) the time to engage with corporate learning. But that’s not quite the whole story. While our survey respondents spend, on average, just 37 minutes per week on their employers’ training, they put in another 3.3 hours per week learning on their own.

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Nearly two-thirds of them say they would put in even more time if they received some kind of credit or recognition they could leverage for professional growth. Perhaps more tellingly, nearly three out of every four told us they have invested their own money in career-related development over the last 12 months – an average of $339 a year.

That all tells us that most people will readily invest in learning – if it fuels their careers or enriches their lives. So don’t just train workers to comply. Help them grow and transform.

Myth #2: Traditional training methods are obsolete.

Truth: Traditional methods are not obsolete. They’re just incomplete.

A lot of people are saying L&D is now “wildly out-of-sync” with how people learn and “the only real remedy is a revolution”. Microlearning, many believe, is the future. Well, not so fast. It is clear that bite-sized content dominates learning habits now. In any given week, 85% learn something for work through search, 69% by reading articles or blogs and 53% from videos.

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But formal training is still essential. Around 70% of people we surveyed take live, virtual or e-learning courses from their employers at least once a year. Many do so every few months.

In either case, development is no longer confined to the workplace. Almost 80% now spend at least some time learning on mobile devices and 67% learn on personal time. The truth is, today’s workers learn sometimes and all the time, and from L&D as well as on their own. Make their curiosity count by blending microlearning with macrolearning.

Myth #3: The L&D function knows learning best

Truth: Responsibility for learning is shared between L&D, managers and employees.

According to CEB, L&D leaders think 4 in 5 workers are “bad at learning” – that they don’t know when to ask for help or share what they know, how to seek out relevant knowledge, or how to extract value from information. We’re not so sure.

Just 21% of people told us they rely on their L&D department when they need to learn something new for work, and only 28% said they search their employers’ learning systems. They look to their boss or mentor (69%), their colleagues (55%) or search online (47%) much more frequently when they need recommendations or answers.

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That doesn’t mean people don’t need help from L&D. In fact, those who said they have adequate guidance are more satisfied with their employer’s learning opportunities than those who don’t. What it does mean is that L&D teams have two roles now: Direct (creating, buying and delivering training) and indirect (giving self-serve L&D meaning by building an environment and culture that guides workers to the right people, experiences and resources).

What you can do

Many teams are already on their way to embracing these roles. In fact, 60% of respondents to our Chief Learning Officer webinar poll said they’re rethinking their L&D strategy in order to adapt to today’s learners. Almost half (48%) are looking to invest in new tools or technologies.

Get the research that reveals the truth about workplace learning and how today’s workforce really learns and fuels their careers. Click here to access Degreed’s full report with all the data and insights you need to empower your learners and create a thriving learning culture. Welcome to the future.

 

Here’s the thing: at Degreed we’ve created an awesome learning platform that gives people the power to track, validate and find learning from any source. We wouldn’t be able to do a really good job at building that without being obsessed with learning ourselves. We were thinking, what if we gave you a clear picture of how real people actually learn at Degreed? Last month we started doing just that- by diving into our own habits and learning goals with a profile of a Degreed team member each month.

Before we start with our next profile- you should know that at Degreed each employee receives $100 a month to learn whatever they want, and unlimited additional dollars if the learning is job related. This benefit is called FlexED, you’ll hear more about that below. Without further ado,  let’s meet Grace.

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Grace Harrington has been a sales development rep at Degreed for almost 6 months. She lives in Salt Lake, but her heart will forever reside on the east coast. Grace is typically either getting involved in discussions concerning global politics (especially involving the Middle East and human rights issues), planning her next chance to break out her passport, or binge-watching documentaries on Netflix. This is how Grace learns:

What topics or skills are you interested in learning about?

International politics, sales, holistic health, human rights issues, feminism, religions of the world, and startups.

What’s your favorite way to learn? 

Conferences and live events

As a Degreed employee, you receive $100 a month for learning as FlexED, how do you like to use your FlexED? 

Books, classes (I just signed up for a ballroom class using FlexED!), community events- especially Impact Hub and AAISP.

Favorite Expert:

My favorite expert is Richard Falk. He is an international law professor at Princeton and former UN Special Reporter on “the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territories”. He’s put out dozens of books on human rights, terrorism, globalization, etc. and published hundreds of articles on his research.

What are the biggest takeaways from what you’ve learned in the last 6 months? 

At a holistic luncheon back in August, I learned that cutting processed sugars and upping water intake is better for weight loss than cutting fats. I’ve lost 20lbs since then just from cutting soda, minimizing processed sugar intake, and drinking at least a gallon of water a day.

I attended a lecture at the Saudi Arabia Cultural Center in Farifax, VA in December on women’s health issues in Saudi and it was really eye-opening to some pressing issues on women’s health in the kingdom. I realized that while the country has definitely progressed in women’s rights issues the last few years, there is still a very long way for them to go!

I am reading “Do Cool Sh*t”, and it is a fun book with similar principles to “The Lean Startup”.  I have an idea that I know can revolutionize the healthcare world in the USA, and this book is giving me great ideas on how to go from a conceptualized to a mobilized idea.

How have your learning habits changed since joining Degreed? 

I find myself looking for more learning opportunities now that I am with Degreed. I like seeing how my knowledge in certain areas have grown, and being able to track and go back to learning I’ve done is really nice! It’s cool having all of my learning searchable in the system by topics that I’ve tagged.

What’s the most useful skill you’ve ever learned?

One of the most useful skills I’ve ever learned was Arabic. Aside from the obvious uses for travel and business, it also helped me meet my soon-to-be fiancée when I heard him tell his friend in Arabic that he thought I was pretty. He was shocked when I told him I understood the language!

What are your learning goals for 2016?

My goals for 2016 are to read 2 books a month: one to expand my knowledge of a targeted topic, and one that is more for fun. I want to really expand my knowledge about the presidential candidates, because none of them are really exciting me at this point. I also plan to write an original article bi-weekly and share it on LinkedIn for others to learn as well!

Grace’s Degreed Stats:

40 courses

163 books

164 articles

39 videos

Most active skills: marketing, leadership, teamwork, sales.

Check out Grace on Degreed here. You can also get credit for reading this article by clicking the button below. Throughout this “How We Learn” blog series we’ll be giving you a closer look at how we learn at Degreed, but we also want to know how you learn- so tweet us at @degreed and tell us what works best for you!

Taylor-navy
At Degreed, each team member is encouraged to spend time learning anything they want, in any way they like to learn. We use Degreed to capture, curate, share and save all of that learning. Here are the Degreed features our team obsesses over. These are a few of our favorite things:

 

Create a Pathway 
AAEAAQAAAAAAAAOUAAAAJDBiOTg5ODEyLWIzZmEtNDI5NS1iYzgwLTNmMWJhM2RiMjkzMw“My favorite feature is how easy it is to create a pathway. It’s so simple to be able to create  a structured learning plan for myself, or to package a set of resources into a bite-sized  lesson plan for anyone to see. Coupled with the chrome extension, it makes it blazing fast  to take a bunch of different learning material into a comprehensive path for learning.” – Jeff Okita, Marketing

 

The Degreed Button
20160312_183954The Degreed button has basically taken over my previous bookmark habit. I can tag articles I like and search for them later in the app if I need to reference them again.  Being able to recommend/share bits of content on the fly is super useful as well.” -Becky Hamm, Engineering

 

See what others learn 
AndyEarl_degreed1_2613“I love seeing other people’s learning activity in the daily email. It’s fun seeing that the executives of the company are always learning new things. It makes me feel more confident in questioning how we do things or bringing up new ideas, because I know the people I work with are open to new ways of thinking. Occasionally others on the team will mention that they read something that I had initially learned, and share how that helped; it’s cool to think that they benefited from something I read.” -Taylor Blake, Product

 

Recommendations
Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 9.03.03 PM“I love the recommendations feature.  When content comes to me from my peers it helps me sift through the myriad of articles and Ted talks and spend my time on items that apply directly to my job, which saves me so much time.  It doesn’t take long to learn which colleagues enjoy similar learning and then I prioritize.  When recommendations come from my exec team I learn what their priorities are for me and am able to develop those skills and stay aligned.” -Bambi Buckles, Sales

 

Tracking
“My favorite feature is the orange + button. For me this represents my small learning achievements and goals. Each time I click that button I feel like I am conquering some of the things which have been life road blocks.” -Michelle Stevens, Support

 

See what I’ve learned
sonja“I like the ability to track everything I learn, and find it later in my profile with the ability to filter by category or format. What books did I read last year? What was that article about content marketing that I liked so much called again? Today’s Learning is another gold mine. I love seeing popular articles on subjects I’m interested in, helping me find the content that I wouldn’t normally find on my own.”
 -Sonja Schurig, Marketing

 

 

 

How do you use Degreed? Click below to share this article and tweet us your favorite features.

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