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Skillsoft adds new capability to immersive learning platform

By Catherine Knowles
Fri 1 Apr 2022

Skillsoft has launched Skill Benchmark Assessments, a new capability within the company’s immersive learning platform, Percipio.

The capability enables organisations to determine their learners’ proficiency across in-demand technology, leadership and business skills, and deliver personalised development paths to expedite skill mastery.

According to Skillsoft, new research found that 83% of organisations are reporting skill gaps in their workforce. As the rate of digital transformation intensifies, gaps in technology-related skills are especially pertinent, with three out of four IT decision makers citing this as a critical challenge, a 145% increase since 2016.

Providing employees with opportunities for continuous professional development in the workplace is essential for combatting this issue. However, before training begins, organisations must first be able to accurately assess learners’ skill levels and deliver relevant content that aligns to their readiness and goals, Skillsoft states.

Skill Benchmark Assessments takes a criterion-based approach to assessing skill proficiency. While traditional, normative-based assessments compare learners’ knowledge to the average of other learners, this may not match the level of proficiency each organisation requires to be successful, the company states.

Skillsoft’s criterion-based tests measure capabilities against specific objectives defined by leading subject matter experts. This allows organisations and learners to determine if they are objectively proficient in certain skill areas and successfully retaining and applying gained knowledge in the workplace.

Additional key features of Skill Benchmark Assessments include:

Skill Benchmark Dashboard: To diagnose where skill gaps exist across an organisation and set a path forward to close them, admins and managers can view scores and levels for individual learners and teams. Subsequently, they can assign specific Benchmark Assessments and training courses that connect learners to careers and competencies that have been prioritised for growth and innovation.

The assessment experience: After answering curated question sets aligned to specific skills, learners are assigned a Benchmark score. Based on this and with Percipio’s blended learning model, they will then receive personalised recommendations that include microlearning lessons, hands-on practice labs, instructor-led training (ILT), and longer-form curricula, such as Aspire Journeys, to enhance and deepen their skillsets.

Skillsoft chief technology officer Apratim Purakayastha says, “Amidst the Great Resignation, employees have made it clear they want to learn. However, time limitations, irrelevant content, and difficulty knowing where to start often hinder what should be positive journeys of self-development. An effective path of learning ultimately comes down to the experience.

"With Skill Benchmark Assessments, as well as our recently released Percipio app for Microsoft Teams, we’re taking the guesswork out of where training should begin and delivering, high-quality, personalised skill development within learners’ natural flow of work. This ultimately leads to future-fit workforces prepared for the jobs of today and tomorrow.”

IDC program vice president IT Education and Certification Cushing Anderson says, “The skills a business needs to succeed are changing, and the tight labour market makes hiring for skills expensive and slow. This puts a premium on effective enterprise skilling initiatives tied to important business objectives. To be effective, organisations need more insight into the skills their workforce has now and the progress their employees are making towards achieving the skills they need.

"Through its skill assessments, Skillsoft is empowering learners to reduce time to achieving their learning goals and providing essential visibility into the current skills of employees and the success of enterprise skilling initiatives. These insights will help the entire business, from the C-Suite to line of business managers, HR, learning and development teams, and individual employees, make better business and career decisions.”

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