Introduction to Certification and Training Strategy with Stimler Advantage
Stimler Advantage guides organizations to develop certification and training resources as part of its work areas and services. The Stimler Advantage 5 S’s Framework informs its business model strategy work.
Certification and Training Opportunities
Investing in certification and training can empower individuals and organizations to lead and thrive in today's dynamic world.
Certifications and training programs are relevant to a wide range of professions and industries. Asynchronous, digital-first, interactive, and self-directed learning certification and training offer benefits to individuals and organizations alike, including demonstrable achievement, performance measurement, and tools for analysis toward continuous improvement.
For individuals, certifications and training can help them develop the knowledge and skills they need to optimally use an organization's products and services, keep them engaged and up-to-date.
For organizations, certifications and training can help them develop an agile and resilient business model aligned with the principle of continuous learning.
Digital-first certification and training platforms and tools can provide individuals and organizations with the resources they need at a lower cost than traditional real-time, in-person, and hands-on training after the initial investment in content development. They also offer opportunities to support accessibility and localization, contribute to sustainability by reducing unnecessary travel, scale to serve the relevant number of users and utilize content format agnostic deployment, whereby core content can be developed once and used in a variety of formats in a circular and reusable manner.
Certification and training powered by digital-first tools can help individuals and organizations acquire new knowledge and skills in an agile and timely manner, enabling them to further themselves and make new contributions to business and society. Certification and training help to develop a skills-based economy where people can be rewarded for their abilities as they apply their skills as problem solvers and value creators.
Practitioners must build cross-disciplinary and functional capabilities to quickly learn the skills required to achieve their goals and sustain organizations and communities in volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous (VUCA) environments, especially as work becomes more interconnected with technology.
Developing Certification and Training Program
Stimler Advantage guides organizations in developing a certification and training programs.
Organizations should audit their existing content to identify materials that can be converted into certification and training materials. This audit will help identify evergreen and topical content opportunities to build upon, ensuring that certification and training programs are comprehensive, up-to-date, and relevant. Audits can also identify gaps, which can be filled with new content to create complete and informative programs.
When developing a certification and training program, organizations must determine the content elements (e.g., audiovisual, text, presentations, and quizzes) and sequencing to create a consistent, predictable, or exploratory user experience. Content creation requires dedicated personnel and resources, so organizations should develop a production schedule, frequency, and publishing process to ensure orderly and sustainable work. Organizations may do this work in-house or outsource it to experts. When creating content, organizations must consider how individual assets will exist and be used together and independently. Additionally, they must examine, define, and document copyright, trademark, and licensing considerations. Finally, organizations must determine how to recognize certification and training achievements (e.g., digital badges or certificates) and store, share, and secure user data over time.
Platform and Tools
Organizations should examine existing and potential digital platforms and tools to create, publish, store, manage, and deliver certification and training content. Platforms may include a suite of processes, systems, and workflows that are part of a holistic and integrated solution. Databases, contract management, licensing, media asset management, project management, and other systems may also be important. In addition to features and functionality, organizations should evaluate cost, ease of use, and support. Organizations may elect to use an existing platform with established audiences and users, develop their own hosted solution, or use a combination of these approaches. Include accessibility considerations when selecting and implementing platforms and tools. Metaverse platforms like gaming and augmented, mixed, and virtual reality environments merit consideration and development in a certification and training strategy.
To extend the impact of certification and training content, organizations should consider partnering with allied organizations. Partnerships can reach relevant audiences, share resources, and offer more comprehensive and valuable programs. Evaluate potential partners based on brand alignment, shared mission, complementary efforts, and user benefit. Formal agreements, shared metrics, and dedicated resources are essential for partnership success. Partnerships can vary in length and value, and require careful monitoring to ensure they meet goals.
Organizations should carefully consider pricing models for certification and training programs. Factors include development and delivery costs, user value, market competition, and payment methods. Self-directed learning models can be offered as à la carte, subscription, or package pricing strategies. The goal is to encourage users to take, complete, and evangelize about the program, so pricing should be inclusive and fair to foster adoption and use.
Marketing and Communications
Organizations should develop a content marketing and communications approach to inform and convert users to take their certification and training programs. Approaches should include a package of advertising and digital media assets to direct users to the programs through relevant channels such as social media, email, messaging, podcasts, and video. Organizations should align their budgeting and resource expectations for ongoing effort from the outset to ensure their programs remain visible, engaging, and impactful.
To develop effective certification and training programs, organizations should collect and analyze learner feedback through surveys, interviews, focus groups, and rating systems. User feedback can help organizations identify areas for improvement and incorporate feedback into revised and new programs. Communicating with users about how their feedback is being used can help build confidence. Additionally, organizations should communicate changes and updates to users through marketing and communications channels, and potentially through dated and time-stamped updates and version logs.
Certification and Training Empower Individuals and Organizations To Lead
Empower individuals and organizations to lead through certification and training."
Investing in certification and training programs empowers individuals and organizations to lead and thrive in today's dynamic world. By providing learners with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed, these programs can help organizations develop an agile and resilient workforce, and individuals can further themselves and make new contributions to business and society. When developing a certification and training program, consult any necessary agency or professional body for legal compliance and regulations.
Stimler Advantage can help your organization with its certification and training program. Connect with me to discuss your executive coaching, tactical, and strategy needs. Follow Stimler Advantage on LinkedIn.