Once upon a time there was a traditional route to the top of the executive ranks: get a bachelor’s degree from an impressive school, get good grades, and possibly move up to a prestigious business school.
Increasingly, we are finding a greater array of options when it comes to learning, chiefly in the form of Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs). Companies like the well-known Coursera offer courses from renowned universities like Yale, University of Michigan, John Hopkins and more. They also offer certificate programs that will prepare you for in-demand tech careers like data science and programming, and MBA graduate degrees from a range of well-respected universities.
Other major online learning platforms:
Khan Academy is a nonprofit that, since its founding in 2008 by entrepreneur Salman Khan, has endeavored to democratize education through free courses in a variety of subjects. Khan Academy has become well-known through its coding classes and connected to secondary public education, but it also has career development courses for adults, including tracks on entrepreneurship and “growth mindset.”
Lynda/LinkedIn Learning is an educational platform that focuses primarily on professional skills and is based on a subscription model. Founded as “Lynda.com” in 1995 by Lynda Weinman, it was acquired by LinkedIn in 2015 and underwent a rebranding. It contains over 15,000 courses, which are taught not by college professors but instead by professionals. Many public libraries now offer LinkedIn Learning as a free benefit of card membership.
Adobe, long known as a dominant player in the graphics and other creative software market has also entered the education market through Adobe Creative Cloud. Courses in Photoshop, Illustrator and AfterEffects give users valuable professional skills for creative and other positions. Adobe also offers certificate programs which can be an asset on an individual’s resume.
Udemy is a clearinghouse of skills-based training (similar to LinkedIn Learning). It borrow concepts from the sharing economy by inviting skilled professionals to create courses for the website and profit share if they are successful.
Skillshare is a subscription-based, educational membership platform that connects users with notable personalities in business and media for educational videos and project-based learning.
These are just a few of the platforms that professionals are turning to in the quest to hone job skills. There are further a number of niche sites that focus on some aspect of coding, creative arts, or business and entrepreneurship. All these options beg the question, are professionals taking these routes seriously in terms of presenting themselves as candidates?
The appeal of online learning platforms for job seekers is obvious. They can enhance their skills while remaining employed. But we also wondered: how popular are these platforms? And are candidates listing these credentials on their resumes. So we put together a poll of our database of candidates to find out more.
What we found
We found that many in our database had tried one of these skills training portals or online learning platforms. We found that Lynda/LinkedIn Learning, Adobe, and Udemy were the most popular picks, showing that our group of professionals is focused on career-building skills and specialties that are taught by other professionals. And while the majority of respondents had not listed these credentials on their resumes, they are open to it.