How University managers are using LinkedIn Learning to support their teams
Benefits-eligible faculty and staff have access to more than 17,000 courses on LinkedIn Learning.
When members of the campus community began pursuing initiatives within the Institutional Excellence pillar of the University's strategic plan, a specific barrier emerged: UAccess Learning.
Users described the former learning management system as "glitchy." Not only did UAccess Learning make it challenging to provide new employees with a uniform knowledge base about University regulations and expectations, but it also fell short when it came to supporting employees' professional development, said Ashley Kurtz, learning and development manager in the Office of Learning and Organizational Development, which is part of the Division of Human Resources.
And so Human Resources partnered with University Information Technology Services to select and build a new system.
Around the same time, the pandemic sent the majority of employees home to work, which presented the immediate need for campus to learn how to work and learn remotely.
"But with challenge comes opportunity," Kurtz said. "The creation of a robust platform for online training and learning could hardly have been better timed."
About one year ago, the University launched its new learning management system, called EDGE Learning. Like UAccess Learning, it is the home for required certifications, such as FERPA Training, Preventing Harassment and Discrimination, and Responsible Conduct of Research.
Today, EDGE Learning offers access to much more than UAccess Learning ever could. How much more? Try 17,000 online professional development courses.
With the addition of LinkedIn Learning to the EDGE Learning platform, benefits-eligible faculty and staff members can take courses on a wide variety of topics, including Microsoft applications, home office organization and public speaking as well as time management, personal effectiveness and creativity.
"EDGE Learning has allowed us to centralize University compliance and job role training but has the potential to become so much more," Kurtz said. "We have started to leverage the system to create new pathways to serve employees' professional development desires through integrating LinkedIn Learning directly within EDGE Learning. We hope learning and development will have more of a presence in the daily work life of employees."
The College of Medicine – Phoenix began offering LinkedIn Learning a year ago. Not surprisingly, some of the most popular topics among the college's employees are working and supervising remotely and supporting employees' mental health and well-being.
Team leaders at the college see their use of LinkedIn Learning as a whole lot more than a tool for individual professional development.
Every few months, members of Amanda Hendricks' team pick a topic they'd like to learn about, such as communication or goal setting. Hendricks, who is appointments, promotion and tenure manager, selects specific courses and videos on the topic; a few weeks or a month later, team members meet to discuss what they learned.
"It's a great way to maintain team cohesion in the era of working apart," she says.
Octavio Duarte, faculty affairs manager, is working with each member of his team to discuss their desired career path and find LinkedIn Learning courses that can help them along that path.
LinkedIn Learning leadership courses are helping Chris Dieterich, manager of instructional support, provide more value to his team, he says.
One course in particular, Motivating and Engaging Employees, "has helped me define where my leadership capital is best spent in an effort to better lead and develop team members," Dieterich says. "Focusing on my own personal behavior and identifying common mistakes has allowed me to become a more competent leader overall."
Getting started with LinkedIn Learning:
- Activate your LinkedIn Learning account (this PDF has instructions).
- Attend an EDGE LinkedIn Learning Information Session for Learners or watch a recorded session.
- Check out the LinkedIn Learning FAQ.
- Browse a list of recommended topics.
- Create your own learning collections.
Those who need help signing up or using LinkedIn Learning can contact the 24/7 IT Support Center by phone or chat. Support is also available online and in person.