What Are Digital Badges and How Do They Support Your Professional Development?
You may have heard the term “badging” or “badges” thrown around before, especially in the workplace or academic setting. Many people use badges, also referred to as learning badges, skill badges, or training badges, to highlight their professional development. During the job search and application process, many forward-thinking job candidates employ badges to visually showcase their accomplishments and skillsets to potential employers. These badges help candidates stand out amongst competition.
What is the Purpose of a Training Badge?
Think of a badge like a certificate — just created for digital use. Badges are used to publicly illustrate a person’s credentials, skill level, or accomplishments, such as the mastery of a skill or completion of a program. Unlike certificates, they’re designed for digital settings and act as a visual verification of the recipient’s skills.
Why Do I Need Badges?
Badges allow peers, colleagues, and employers to quickly determine your skill level and competencies. Let’s say you’re a candidate looking for a new job. If a recruiter or hiring manager is looking at 30-40 resumes a day, your resume might stand out if your acquired badges are listed across the top. Not only are badges designed to be eye-catching and visually appealing, but they are specifically created to showcase your skills quickly and efficiently.
Do Training Badges Replace Diplomas?
Comparing badges to diplomas is like comparing apples to oranges. Diplomas are given in academic and collegiate settings, but many employers (even Elon Musk and Bill Gates) say that degrees are a thing of the past. Today, employers are looking for candidates with job skills, who are appropriately equipped to do the job on day one. Badges are a great way to showcase that capability— whether it’s professional development acumen or job-specific skills, they show the employer that you have exactly what they’re looking for.
Who Gives Out Badges?
Any creditable source can give out badges! Some colleges and boot camps will give badges to students for completing certain courses, while employers may give out badges to employees for completing professional development training. HubSpot issues badges for passing their digital marketing courses and Microsoft offers them to those who pass their exams. The important thing to remember, though, is that a badge is only as credible as the organization who provides them.
What Kind of Skills Would I Receive a Badge For?
Just about anything! If you scour the internet, you can find a badge for all sorts of things— but keep in mind that if you plan to utilize badges for a professional purpose, you’ll want to be strategic about which badges you earn. At Tek Ladder, we offer a series of five badges that clearly emphasize the technical and professional skills students gain throughout our Online IT Training Program, including:
- IT Service Desk
- Career Readiness
- Critical Thinking
- Customer Service
- Program Completion
Do Badges Benefit IT Professionals?
Without a doubt! That’s why Tek Ladder places such a large emphasis on badging. Because degrees aren’t required for tech jobs, having badges that are relevant for the IT field show exactly which skills you have and how they will benefit the employer. Take the IT Service Desk badge for example: students only receive the badge once they complete rigorous technical training and have a verifiable ability work across functional IT networks.
Badges are a great way to succinctly show off your skillset and accomplishments. During the job application process, badges make it easy for a hiring manager to quickly ascertain your qualifications. If you’re already making a hiring manager’s job easier, then you’re one step closer to snagging an interview.
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