Introducing The Josh Bersin Academy

The role of Human Resources is more important than ever. This year more than two-thirds of CEOs believe talent is their #1 business problem and a myriad of new issues have emerged. Organizations are dealing with automation and the need for new skills, a shift to agile and network-based organization models, the need to rethink performance management and rewards, and a myriad of challenges to improve the employee experience. 

Are we ready to deal with all this? Not quite. In my last two major research studies, I found that only 8% of companies rate their HR capabilities as “excellent,” 44% are “adequate,” and 47% are “poor or fair.” 

Why the gap? HR has just become more complex over the last few years. For example, only 4% of HR organizations rate their analytics expertise as excellent, only 7% believe they understand world-class career and mobility strategies, and only 16% have a strategy to deal with independent workers. These are challenging new problems, and new practices and tools are being invented every day.

I meet with hundreds of HR teams around the world, and I know how passionately you work to make life better for your people.  But as new global research points out, one of the biggest challenges we now face is “developing deeper skills in the new and innovative practices of HR.”

In other words, we as HR and L&D practitioners need to invest in ourselves.

With this mission in mind, we are launching the Josh Bersin Academy, a professional development Academy dedicated entirely to the needs of HR. (News release here.)

As I discuss in the video below, the Academy is a place you can go throughout your career to learn, solve problems, share your challenges, and meet peers. It is a beautifully integrated learning experience, curated with strategic and up to date content, focused on the new and emerging disciplines that drive the greatest business value.


A Completely Integrated Place to Learn

We designed The Josh Bersin Academy as an integrated experience, designed to help you learn throughout your career.

What is an Academy?  It’s a place you go to study, learn, and advance your professional capabilities. It’s also a place you go to transform your career, learn about new jobs, and advance the state of the profession. We hope to do all these things.

  • At its core, the Academy is built around comprehensive certificate programs which give you in-depth expertise on critical topics. These programs, which I explain below, give you a comprehensive understanding of the new domains of HR, and you work with others to learn.
  • To support your ongoing learning, the Academy includes an integrated learning experience platform filled with more than 100 on-demand self-study resources, including videos, case studies, primers, and tools.
  • And to bring the Academy to life, it includes a vibrant and engaged community where you can meet your peers, describe challenges, and share your best practices.

The platform is built on an integrated learning solution which includes story-telling, videos, and a range of digital learning experiences in a modular format. You move through these programs in an integrated but non-linear way, reading, listening, and interacting with others … designed to take you to a clear learning outcome. 

Academy content is developed in partnership with you and your peers, so you see expert videos (“Featured Voices of the Academy”), background research, and new and innovative case studies. If you want to share your story please contact us, you can share it in the community or we’ll interview you directly.

The Academy is vendor-neutral. While we work with hundreds of vendors as innovation partners, there is no “sponsored content” or advertising of any kind. We want people to talk freely about their tools and providers in a neutral place. Over time we’ll build tools to help you find vendors and share your feedback on their offerings.

There are also tools to support you. We have built a series of Primers and are creating other innovative instructional resources, including Conversation Starters® which facilitate in-house design and innovation sessions around the programs.

And there’s more. We are planning a series of CHRO, CLO, and Chief Talent Officer events we will launch later this year. We are recruiting a cadre of Senior Faculty to help us facilitate and support you in your journey. And we’re building an Academy-wide certification and a series of skills-based badges to help you share your expertise. 

We know this works. Over the last several months, we have piloted the Josh Bersin Academy with more than 400 professionals from 16 companies, including Vodafone, Kronos, Kraft Heinz, United Health Group, Yandex, Dolby, OC Tanner, Medidata, and Taj Hotels. 

Comprehensive Certificate Programs

Academy Certificate Programs are cohort-based, time-bound learning experiences that bring you together with up to 50 of your peers in a carefully designed learning journey. The integrated platform, collaboration, assessment, and video experience give you an always-interesting path to learn, collaborate, assess your learning, and complete exercises.

Throughout the programs, you view videos of best-practices, test your learning through exercises, and collaborate with others. As you progress you accumulate points and upvotes from others, and there are a series of leaderboards (for individuals and teams) to view your progress. 

Throughout the Academy you complete certificates and gain points through activity, so you achieve higher levels of status and more advanced certificates throughout your career. At any point in the Academy, you can find and message others, as you build your network of new learning friends.

The Five Inaugural Certificate Programs Are:

Programs on People Analytics, Designing the Employee Experience, The Role of AI in HR, Agile HR Design and Service Delivery, and the Role of a World-Class Business Partner are coming later this year.

A Beautiful, Integrated Design

Programs are designed around modules called Field Manuals, which are instructionally designed series of activities that follow a prescribed learning path. Each element of a Field Manual includes videos, interactivities, assessments, and assignments to collaborate with others.

Field Manuals facilitate conversations in your cohort. In our experience the solution generates more than 90% completion rate and a net promoter score far above any other online learning solutions I have seen.

All your learning activities, collaboration, and exercises are available in your own personal dashboard, and you can see leaderboards and compete with other teams.

As a user it’s easy to start, stop, and then come back whenever you have time. Similar to the experience with online social tools, you can always come back to find new messages and new stories from your peers, making the learning experience interesting but focused.

High-Value Learning Resources

The Academy Resources are like a Learning Experience Platform dedicated to HR. At launch, we have more than 100 micro-learning programs, articles, videos, and primers – with many more added each week.

Josh Bersin Academy Resources

The Academy Is Designed for You

We designed the Academy specifically for HR, so it is architected to evolve with the profession.

We will constantly be building new content, adding new resources, and adding services to give you a career-long experience that helps you grow, advance, and progress as a professional. Over time we will build programs in all major disciplines of HR, focused on leading practices and case studies from the most innovative organizations in the world.

“There is a great need for practical, consistent, and cost-efficient training for dispersed HR teams, especially in a business like ours which has 175 hotels across India and other countries, “ said Dr. P.V. Ramana Murthy, executive vice president and global head of human resources for Indian Hotel Company Ltd., which owns and operates world-renowned brands such as Taj and Vivanta.  “We want our HR leaders and professionals to be prepared with the information, best practices, and tools that will help them deal with the workforce challenges ahead.”

An Affordable Experience for All

One of my biggest goals is to reach as many of you as possible. I know that many of you work for small companies, you may be independent, or you may be part of a large organizational team. 

We have specifically made the Academy easy to access by giving you three affordable ways to join. 

  • As an individual, you can join the Academy for less than the cost of a single trade show ($450 per year), and you have access to all the programs and resources with no limit.
  • As a team, you can join the Academy as a group, enabling your HR peers can work together on programs.
  • As an enterprise, you can join the Academy Enterprise Edition, which is a dedicated HR Academy for your company. Enterprise Edition members can customize the entire environment and have access to advanced analytics – enabling you to use the Academy to educate, align, and drive change in your global organization.

In all three models, the price is $500 per user per year or less, far lower than the cost of a single course at many educational institutions. We want to make the Academy available to everyone. (Click here for pricing options.)

Join Us In This Journey

The Josh Bersin Academy is only beginning. We have an exciting plan to add new content regularly, with new resources being added each week and many new programs planned for this year.  And I will be personally involved in your learning experience, making sure you get the most innovative and advanced new practices month after month.

Click here to join us, I look forward to seeing you in the Academy!