Microsoft and LinkedIn set a goal to help 250,000 companies make a skills-first hire. The jobs will be in what Microsoft calls its “ecosystem” of companies that use or help sell its products. That includes a program named Skills Path that aims to help employers — including Gap, Taskrabbit, Ralph Lauren, and Wayfair, who are participating in the pilot — evaluate candidates based on their skills, including those gained from the free courses.
As societies reopen, one of the key steps needed to foster a safe and successful economic recovery is expanded access to the digital skills needed to fill new jobs. One of the keys to a genuinely inclusive recovery is programs to provide easier access to digital skills for people hardest hit by job losses, including those with lower incomes, women, and underrepresented minorities, according to Microsoft.
The initiative will focus on three areas:
"At its heart, this is a comprehensive technology initiative that will build on data and digital technology,'' Microsoft said in a blog post. "It starts with data on jobs and skills from the LinkedIn Economic Graph. It provides free access to content in LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn, and the GitHub Learning Lab, and couples these with Microsoft Certifications and LinkedIn job-seeking tools."