Posts Tagged ‘Certification’

Borrow this University Business Model to Sell Certification Programs

Richard Nantel, Vice President, Enterprise Learning Solutions, Blatant Media | Absorb LMS

You, dear reader, can obtain an education from the most prestigious universities in the world, all for free. It makes no difference whether you received straight `A’s in high school or whether you spent your high school years sitting in your friend’s basement learning to play the opening to Stairway to Heaven on a Gibson Flying V guitar instead of studying for final exams. Your past educational performance has no impact on your ability to study at the world’s best universities.Gibson Flying V

Your choice of institutions includes many of the status rock stars of the higher-ed world:

  • California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
  • Columbia University
  • Harvard University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • McGill University
  • The University of Queensland
  • The University of Tokyo
  • And many more

You won’t even need to move to the U.S., Canada, Australia, Japan, or elsewhere to attend classes. These institutions have all generously put their courses online, accessible through sites such as EdX and Open Education Consortium.

Imagine how great it will be to apply for your next job by submitting a resume showing off your Harvard education! Your starting salary will easily pay for your Fifth-Avenue lifestyle with a bit left over for a yacht.

Reality check

Although you will have successfully completed courses provided by these institutions, you won’t actually be a graduate. These universities (and potential employers) get a little touchy about people saying that they studied there unless they have an actual signed diploma hanging on their wall.

There was a time when people paid university tuition fees to access great content. Increasingly, that content is available for free to anyone with Internet access. Tuition now pays for the certification. In the education section of your resume, it’s not what you know that opens career doors. Rather, what many employers want to see is that a respected university has vetted you, certifying that you truly know what you say you know.

Commercial course providers agonize over how much content to provide for free as marketing teasers, and how much to make available only to paying customers. If you provide a certification program that is highly respected and desired by learners, you may want to consider adopting a business model similar to the academic one discussed above:

  • Make courses available for free
  • Charge for the certificate

This is an easy model to replicate in a learning management system:

  • Create a curriculum containing the courses and learning activities the learner must complete to meet the requirements of certification.
  • Create a course separate from this curriculum that issues the certificate. A prerequisite for accessing this certificate course must be the successful completion of the curriculum.

Absorb LMS: prerequisites

  • Configure this certificate course with the necessary pricing details.

Absorb LMS: Shopping Cart

Although learners will be able to purchase the certificate course prior to completing the curriculum, the actual certificate will only be issued once they complete the necessary courses.

Managing this type of model manually is time-consuming and expensive. A learning management system can automate the process, freeing you up to focus on creating great content for your learners.

PRESS RELEASE: Blatant Media Certified as ‘Best in Class’ LMS Provider by Brandon Hall Group

March 22, 2012 Leave a comment

Blatant Media Corporation, publishers of the Absorb and SMARTLAB LMS platforms, receive a “Best in Class” rating in Brandon Hall Group’s Smartchoice® Solution Provider Certification program.

CALGARY, ALBERTA– (Mar 21st, 2012) – Staff at Blatant Media Corporation, creators of the award-winning learning management systems Absorb LMS and SMARTLAB, are pleased to announce that they have received a “Best in Class” rating from Brandon Hall Group’s Smartchoice® Solution Provider Certification program. The company received its highest scores in the focus area of Cost of Ownership, based on “great price to value” and extremely high customer satisfaction with their overall return on investment in the Absorb platform.

Brandon Hall Group is the preeminent research and analyst organization focused on developing research-driven solutions to drive organizational performance within executive management, learning and development, talent management, sales, and marketing functions.

“It is evident through our Smartchoice® process and discovery that Blatant Media has a compelling learning solution. Blatant Media¹s clients have reported their solutions to be reliable, flexible, and easy to use,” said Mike Cooke, chief executive officer of Brandon Hall Group. “A strong focus on product design, functionality and client support was integral in Blatant Media receiving a Brandon Hall Group Smartchoice® certification.”

“Absorb LMS made rocket science look like play dough. Every other LMS looked outdated in appearance and function – Absorb looked perfect,” stated one of the clients that participated in the survey.

The Smartchoice® Program is based Brandon Hall Group’s extensive analyst coverage of vendors and industry research findings. Smartchoice®, is a validation program that recognizes the best product and service providers offering solutions to learning, talent, sales and marketing functions.

The Smartchoice® methodology is a rigorous evaluation process focusing on four core areas: Client Support; Cost of Ownership; Functionality; and Capability. Companies, which receive a superior rating in all four-focus areas, receive the Smartchoice® Program certification. By selecting a Smartchoice® provider, organizations looking to acquire products and/or services will be choosing from industry-leading providers who offer ground-breaking solutions to their unmet needs.

“It’s really great to be recognized as a Best in Class LMS provider” said Al Kinnear, Sales and Marketing Director with Blatant Media. “The whole team here works very hard so it’s awesome to see this reflected in such a high level of customer satisfaction.”

“Nice!” added Mike Eggermont, partner at Blatant Media.

This is the seventh time that Blatant Media has earned the recognition of Brandon Hall and the first time that they have participated in the Smartchoice® program. Previous Brandon Hall awards include:

  • Bronze in Learning Management Technology category of the Excellence in Technology for Learning, Talent Management, and Sales and Marketing Awards (2011)
  • Gold Award for Best Advance in Learning Management Technology for Global Training (2010)
  • Silver for Best Advance in Learning Management Technology for External Training (2009)
  • Gold Award for Best Advance in Learning Management Technology for Small and Medium Sized Businesses (2009)
  • Bronze Award for Best Advance in Learning Management Technology for External Training (2009)
  • Silver Award for Best Video in a Learning Program (2008)

Absorb LMS has also been named to’s 2011 list of Top 20 Learning Portal Companies (for the second consecutive year) and was recently recognized as an “Industry Innovator” in a McLean & Company LMS Landscapes report.

About Brandon Hall Group

Having worked with more than 10,000 clients globally and after 20 years of delivering world-class solutions, Brandon Hall Group is the preeminent research and analyst organization focused on developing research-driven solutions to drive organizational performance for emerging and large organizations. Brandon Hall Group has an extensive repository of thought leadership, research, data and expertise in Learning and Development, Talent Management, Sales Effectiveness, Marketing Impact, and Executive Management. (

About Blatant Media Corporation

More than 650,000 employees and students use Absorb every day in over 300 companies globally. Among the list of international clients are Oakley, Adobe Software Systems, Dannon, American Medical Systems, EVOCO, University of Indiana, Zoll Medical, Shoretl, Websense, Virgin Mobile Canada, the United States Anti-Doping Association and many others.
The creator of Absorb LMS and SMARTLAB, Blatant Media Corporation is a learning technology company that leverages the power of technology to provide online training solutions for clients throughout the world. The company is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Canada., (403) 520-2595.

Contact Information

Media Contact:
Dan Medakovic
V.P. Learning Solutions