LinkedIn to expand access to professional certifications from Meta, Oracle and more – Digiday

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LinkedIn will soon feature a wider variety of tech skills courses and certifications from major tech companies including IBM, Meta and Oracle on its platform, to better cater to the rising demand for skills-based tech jobs.
The company today announced that people who want to increase their professional skills in order to potentially gain jobs at these companies and other major tech companies can take a wider range of courses via Linkedin Learning, and will receive a certificate on completion.
“A skills-first labor market is emerging all around us,” Hari Srinivasan, vp of product for LinkedIn Talent Solutions, told WorkLife. “Helping our members demonstrate their existing skills, and learn new ones, is a priority – both for keeping skills relevant as jobs evolve and shaping the next step of their careers.”
The number of people on LinkedIn who have added certifications to their profile has increased 44% over the last two years, according to the platform.
People can already access nearly 20,000 courses taught by professionals for a fee of $39.99 a month via Linkedin Learning. The tool has given folks the opportunity to earn academic credit toward a degree, continue education units to maintain certain professional licenses, and certification preparation programs to demonstrate skills in a certain industry. However, currently, there are only three Meta courses and five Oracle courses available. From today there will be a far greater range or certified courses on LinkedIn Learning for people to people to take via the platform, for no additional fee.
Course content will include everything from cloud infrastructure to project management and digital marketing. 
While taking one of the courses on LinkedIn Learning won’t necessarily guarantee a job, Srinivasan said an increasing number of companies are using skills data to fill roles.
“Employers, eager to fill roles in an uncertain labor market, have begun to focus on whether people have the skills to get the job done,” said Srinivasan. Meanwhile 40% of companies on LinkedIn use skills data to fill their roles, up 30% year over year. he added. “This signifies an increasing understanding between organizations that what matters most is that a candidate has the skills, not how they got them.”
LinkedIn Learning’s 2022 Workplace Learning Report found that between upskilling and reskilling and digital skilling/digital transformation, 72% of learning and development leaders see skills as a top focus area this year.
Srinivasan said that with certifications only rising in importance on the platform, LinkedIn is building toward a future where it is the central destination for members to do certification preparation, take assessments, and demonstrate skill proficiency to their network and recruiters.
Oracle’s training specifically will include product demonstrations, best practices, hands-on labs (interactive lab environments), and exam preparation questions, all taught by Oracle experts in an effort to ensure the content keeps pace with the innovation of Oracle Cloud technology.
The incentive for the tech companies that have partnered with LinkedIn, is the added visibility for their courses on the professional network, which claims more than 850 million members.
“With this partnership, millions of people will discover Oracle Cloud certifications and enhance their cloud skills with role-based learning paths,” said Damien Carey, senior vp of Oracle University in a news release about the feature expansion. “We’re excited about the continued collaboration with LinkedIn to empower more learners with expert-led digital training.”
The announcement follows LinkedIn’s acquisition of EduBrite, a platform that specializes in creating and hosting professional certifications and assessments, at the end of June.
LinkedIn has introduced several features this year, that help members spotlight their skills-based training. In May it gave members the ability to associate the skills listed on their profile with the education, jobs or certifications they’ve earned. It also made it possible for recruiters to search and filter candidates based on skill requirements via its tool Linkedin Recruiter.
Srinivasan said that in the last year, 338 million skills were added to LinkedIn profiles, which is a 39% year-over-year increase.
The announcement also comes at a time when Young people are more carefully considering apprenticeships over college where they can complete a course that is cheaper, shorter and more flexible and still have the opportunity to land their dream job.
With Tuesday’s announcement also comes the news of an extension of LinkedIn’s two-year partnership with Microsoft that will now offer certificates aimed at helping workers and job-seekers transition into the digital economy with Microsoft’s Skills for Jobs program, which is free for all learners.
Over the past two years LinkedIn and Microsoft have worked on a global skills initiative partnership to help people develop skills that are in demand by companies through free access to curated content which identified as having the greatest number of job openings, have had steady growth and pay a livable wage. It empowered more than 400,000 companies to make a skills-based hire last year. 
“While we know it will take time to create a skills-first labor market, we are committed to expanding our partnerships, innovating our product, and collaborating with other organizations to create more equal access to opportunity through skills,” read LinkedIn’s news release.
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