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Investing In Employees: Developing Skills on the Job


In part one of "Investing in Employees," Dr. Susan Manning, Chief Success Strategist at Credly, explored what happens when an organization invests in employee learning and skills training, and then quits. On the other side of skills training and development is the employee - who is increasingly relying on their employer to provide on-the-job training.

What happens when an employee earns a credential and then moves on to another company or role? Who “owns” the credential?

At the recent National Wood Flooring Expo, Credly leaders engaged in conversations around the topic of employee training as an investment, with the added bonus of digital credentials. However, the lingering question about who owns the credential remained. Employees are increasingly demanding that they get to keep the credentials they’ve earned, regardless of where they’ve earned them. Having verified, transferable skills are important to a mobile workforce, now more than ever.

What Employees Want

As Gallup reports, today’s workers are seeking opportunities to develop skills and competencies on the job. Specifically, younger workers are looking for pathways for career development. “An impressive 87% of millennials rate "professional or career growth and development opportunities" as important to them in a job -- far more than the 69% of non-millennials who say the same.” Opportunities for education and career development attract and retain employees, especially when learning and competencies are recognized within the organization.

Digital credentials provide a vehicle for creating the culture of recognition and can surface the skills and competencies resulting from strong learning programs. That said, digital credentials are issued to individuals, so an employee of a company “owns” the credential that accompanies the competency. This allows the employee to use the credential to justify a promotion or to use in addition to a resume when searching for employment elsewhere.

The Importance of Opportunity

Providing opportunities for professional development serves to recruit new talent and retain existing employees. Digital credentials mark and recognize those achievements and belong to the individual who demonstrates the competency. The simple answer to the question of “What if they leave?” is that having an employee leave in good standing with an earned credential reflects positively on you as the employer. Offering current and future employees the possibility for on-the-job training that could translate into a promotion in the future is not only good for the employee learning the skill, but also the organization who is benefiting from having the most qualified person on the job.

If you want to learn more about creating a digital credentialing program, fill out the form below to get in touch with a Credly expert.