Co-Founder & CEO,
Co-Founder & CEO,
In a rapidly changing global economy, it can be difficult to stay ahead of the curve. New technologies, skills, and workplace roles shift regularly. For professionals, that means staying relevant in order to move up the corporate ladder or land a new job.
To address this issue, there has been a flood of continuing education opportunities in recent years. Take massive open online courses (MOOCs) for example, which have exploded in popularity; in 2016, 58 million people registered for an online course. At the same time, higher educational institutions and other organizations are competing to offer the best range of traditional and non-degree programs for individuals looking to take the “next step” professionally. Of course, some people just make it up – but we don’t recommend that approach!
At Accredible, we’ve made it our mission to bring transparency to continuing education. We issue digital credentials, which are a secure and easily accessible means of verifying that someone actually earned a certificate or completed a course. To us, this is a cornerstone of how education will work in the future as hiring trends shift and education options continue to multiply at exponential rates.
Our vision, though, is more expansive. As we work with both private and public organizations offering new education opportunities, here are our three most important observations:
Even as the number of people with a four-year degree rises, it’s still a challenge for companies to find employees with the right skills, which is why the Obama administration set aside $165 million for apprenticeship programs . Take recent labor shortages in Wisconsin and Michigan, for example. We believe public and private investment in education will lead to better outcomes for job seekers, companies, and communities.
Although MOOC enrollment continues to grow it’s not just open online courses that are driving innovation in education. Certification programs and micro-credentialing for specific skills (such as digital marketing) are on the rise as well. We firmly support greater access for more people, but caution that a verifiable set of credentials is critical to success.
Advanced education remains one of the most significant barriers for high-wage jobs around the world. In the United States, the numbers speak for themselves: those with advanced degrees are a third less likely to be unemployed, while median weekly income for those groups shows a 100%-150% disparity. Based on these stats alone (and there are many more), it’s clear that education is the most important tool for boosting the global economy as well as quality of life.
At Accredible, we’re proud to be part of the technological revolution in education. Access to education is only increasing, and that is good news, but it’s still critical that individuals have a means of proving that they’ve accomplished what they say they have. And it goes beyond potential job seekers. Transparent and secure digital credentials build trust between hiring managers, institutions, and organizations. The trends that we’ve identified here are only a small part of this educational transformation, and luckily, its future looks bright.