Digital Badges for Visible Skills: Credly’s Founder & CEO Shares Their Vision for Giving Credit Where It’s Due

This podcast episode is brought to you by work+EDU, an action-based event hosted by EdTech Times.

In January 2017, Michael Horn, author, speaker, and co-founder of the Clayton Christensen Institute, wrote a piece for Forbes asking if alternative credentials could replace college degrees.

The same year, LinkedIn conducted a survey of corporate learning and development professionals. 57% said that they’d be placing more value on non-traditional credentials when reviewing candidates.

The increasing costs of traditional post-secondary credentials have become a major concern for learners of all ages today. At the same time, there is a clear need for professionals to constantly upgrade their skill-sets to remain relevant in the job market. These conditions make opportunity ripe for alternative credentials.

In this EdTech Times podcast series, Bootcamps and Badges, we’ll dive into this growing segment of the education marketplace, interviewing alternative credential providers and other experts about the present and future of skills-based education.

In this first interview, we speak with Jonathan Finkelstein, founder and CEO of Credly, a digital badging platform designed to make talent more visible and opportunity more accessible.

Jonathan says that “It’s no longer an assumption that simply having a bachelor’s degree is the proxy that represents you’re ready for a job.” He believes that students should have other ways to demonstrate their skills, outside of a traditional 4-year college degree.

He also thinks that those who complete a substantial portion of their education training but can’t complete a degree should still have something to show for the work they put in.

“You shouldn’t have to wait two or three or four years to have something of value,” Jonathan says.

The new wave of credentials and badges is allowing employees to get credit for the work they put forth that a typical degree wouldn’t always reflect. Credly is helping employers assess these talents, make them more visible, and connect those to the workplace.

Listen in to our interview with Jonathan Finkelstein, where he tells us more about Credly, and explains how the recognition of these skills is allowing for people to be discovered by employers and gain opportunities.


This podcast episode is brought to you by work+EDU, an action-based event hosted by EdTech Times.

Join us in Boston June 20, 2018 to hear how educators and employers from the fastest growing industries are successfully bridging the gap between education and work. Together with speakers and attendees, you’ll brainstorm solutions for your own community.

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Hannah Nyren

Hannah Nyren

Hannah Nyren is the General Manager of EdTech Times. A Texan by birth but a Bostonian at heart, Hannah is an educational writer, AmeriCorps alum, and one-time StartupWeekend EDU (SWEDU) winning team member. She started her career at a Pearson-incubated edtech startup, but has since covered travel, food & culture, and even stonemasonry in addition to education.