The way we work is changing at a rapid pace, but some needs remain constant. At Microsoft, we believe the need to learn and grow is one of these constants, and we’re making significant investments to help people achieve more through learning. Today we introduced Microsoft Viva an employee experience platform that empowers people and teams to be their best from wherever they work. Microsoft Viva has four modules focused on knowledge, insights, communications – and learning, which is the focus of this article.
In June of 2020, Microsoft announced an ambitious goal to help 25 million people around the world gain the digital skills they need to be successful. We’ve helped millions of people so far, and we will have more to share on the impact we are seeing in the coming weeks.
Our vision extends beyond supporting job seekers, to supporting people’s success after they are hired. We envision a world in which learning is a natural part of company culture and each person’s daily habit, empowering people and driving business success.
As a company, Microsoft is transforming our own approach to learning and development by fostering a culture that prioritizes growth mindset principles and learn-it-all curiosity. We now have the opportunity to apply insights we’ve gained as we continue on our own journey so we can help other people and organizations.
Adult Learning Theory tells us learning needs arise quickly and are best addressed quickly. We also know learning tends to be fragmented and disconnected from the day-to-day employee experience. As a result, people find it challenging to discover and prioritize learning – for example, employees report only 1 percent of their work week is spend on training and development. In addition, people value learning – 94 percent of employees say they would stay at a company longer if it invested in their learning and development. Combining the research and data with our own insights have led us to build a new, transformative learning experience seamlessly integrated into the flow of work.
Today, we are pleased to introduce a private preview of the Viva Learning app for Microsoft Teams. Viva Learning empowers everyone, from corporate teams to frontline workers, to develop skills in the flow of their work so that people across an organization can learn and grow. Viva Learning is part of the newly announced Microsoft Viva family, which brings together communications, knowledge, learning, resources, and insights in an employee experience platform that helps people thrive at work.
The Viva Learning app for Microsoft Teams is a central hub for learning where people can discover, share, assign, and learn from best-in-class content libraries across the organization—including LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn, third-party content providers, and an organization’s own custom content—to help teams and individuals to make learning a natural part of their day.
Microsoft is partnering across the learning ecosystem to integrate content from leading third-party providers. In addition to LinkedIn Learning and Microsoft Learn, we are pleased to share that Viva Learning has integrated with content providers Skillsoft, Coursera, Pluralsight, and edX. Learning management system providers Cornerstone OnDemand, Saba, and SAP SuccessFactors have also announced their intention to join us in integrating with Viva Learning. Organizations that have access to the resource libraries from these content and learning management system providers can seamlessly access that content within the Viva Learning app for Microsoft Teams. Later this year, we intend to make APIs publicly available so our broad ecosystem of customers and partners can also integrate with Viva Learning.
Viva Learning adds to Microsoft Teams capabilities, enabling individuals to organize and share training in chats, channels, and tabs, where teams collaborate every day. People can easily search for and share training in a chat as they would share other types of content.
Teams and groups of people can also organize their own learning tab with customized, relevant learning content.
Learning is better when it’s personalized, and insights from the Microsoft Graph make it easier for people to acquire the knowledge they need. In addition to displaying relevant learning through Search, Viva Learning displays recommended content in a personalized view. Viva Topics, which organizes content into topics to connect employees to information and expertise, will also offer learning suggestions within the topic center, along with other knowledge resources.
Microsoft Viva Learning centralizes content across a variety of providers and modalities and surfaces it in one place for people. From formal training videos to informal learnings such as Microsoft Word documents and Microsoft PowerPoint decks stored in Microsoft SharePoint, Viva Learning helps people gain knowledge easily by engaging with the right content when and where they need it.
We are working closely with Skillsoft, Coursera, Pluralsight, and edX to integrate their world-class content into Viva Learning, and learning management system providers Cornerstone OnDemand, Saba, and SAP SuccessFactors have announced their intent to integrate as well.
“Skills are more important than ever, and there is increased urgency in providing people with the best opportunities to be their best at work and achieve breakthrough results. By integrating learning into the flow of work, Cornerstone and Microsoft are helping remove barriers and enabling organizations to access the power of truly connected employee experiences.”
Heidi Spirgi, Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer, Cornerstone
“With the integration of SAP SuccessFactors Learning and Microsoft Viva Learning, employees can easily find and consume relevant learning content and collaborate with other learners in the flow of work. This helps further SAP’s vision of a modern learning platform that supports individuals throughout their career journeys and empowers organizations to be more resilient to changing market dynamics.”
Jill Popelka, President, SAP SuccessFactors
“Microsoft is breaking new ground by eliminating the separation between work and learning for millions of people across the globe. Skillsoft is proud to be a part of this learning revolution, adding our collection of robust learning experiences to Microsoft Viva Learning so that we can close the gap between knowing and doing together."
Apratim Purakayastha, Chief Technology Officer, Skillsoft
“Every worker has to become a lifelong learner as digital transformation accelerates and skills become obsolete at a faster pace. We are excited to make Coursera accessible to many learners through Microsoft Viva Learning as companies focus on helping employees gain critical skills in the flow of their everyday work.”
Leah Belsky, Chief Enterprise Officer, Coursera
“We are excited to be partnering with Microsoft Viva Learning, where Pluralsight users can access our training content directly within the Employee Experience Platform. This integration will provide convenient access to our joint customers to the tools they need to master the necessary technology skills that will move their businesses forward.”
Brandon Peay, EVP, Skills at Pluralsight
“At edX, we believe addressing the skills gap represents a challenge that touches on a broader social responsibility that companies have to their employees and the communities in which they operate. Our collaboration with Microsoft Viva Learning puts the life changing tool of education into the hands of millions more potential learners to transform their careers and lives.”
Adam Medros, co-CEO and President, edX
Viva Learning and LinkedIn Learning users will also benefit from deep integration with LinkedIn Learning. In addition to integrating the full LinkedIn Learning catalog, Viva Learning will enable users to engage with LinkedIn Learning content directly in Microsoft Teams through an embedded content player.
The connections between employee learning, engagement, and business performance are clear. Employees who have opportunities to learn and grow are 3.6 times more likely to report being happy compared with those who do not have such opportunities. Highly engaged organizations report 5 times higher market capitalization per employee, 21 percent greater profitability, and 51 percent less employee turnover . In short, learning is a great way to inspire workplace happiness and organizational success.
By giving managers the tools to assign learning and track reported completion, Viva Learning enables business leaders to address the skills gap while driving an agile workplace that prioritizes learning and growth.
Viva Learning also shows all the learning assignments a manager has made, when they are due, and individuals’ reported completion status.
Employees can see the learning assigned to them, whether from a manager with Viva Learning or through our planned integrations with leading learning management systems, along with due dates and other important information.
Organizations can support culture change and individual growth by helping their people carve out time to learn before their calendar fills up. The Microsoft Viva Insights app for Teams as well as the briefing email from Cortana will include actionable cards that make it easy to book dedicated time for learning.
Learning is essential for people to reach their potential and for organizations to advance their goals. Viva Learning consolidates learning content, makes it easy to find and share that content, provides tools for managers to assign learning and track reported completion, and simplifies the learning experience—all within the flow of everyday work.
We’re excited about the possibilities, and we look forward to learning on this journey together.
Starting in February 2021, we are previewing the Viva Learning app for Teams with a small number of customers and partners, and expect to make it generally available later this year. We encourage you to sign up here to learn more about Viva Learning, including further details about new experiences as they become available.
Listen to this special #MSFTViva #TheIntrazone podcast with Jared Spataro: "Viva Las Microsoft." Hear from Jared about the design of Microsoft Viva and its four main components: Connections, Insights, Learnings and Topics.
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