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Professionals watched 1.2M hours in a week of LinkedIn Learning during lockdown

A different kind of FOMO (fear of missing out) haunted professionals during the quarantine period the government imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19. Based on LinkedIn data, in April 2020, learners watched 1.2 million hours of LinkedIn Learning content in a single week.

LinkedIn is a business and employment-oriented online service, which has evolved into a professional social network.

“The global pandemic has affected our professional and personal lives,” Feon Ang, VP, Talent and Learning Solutions in the Asia Pacific, LinkedIn. “We’ve seen that hiring has declined across the globe. In addition, many organizations have transitioned their workforce to working remotely.”

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The extra time that was usually spent on traffic before the work-from-home era was put to good use. Professionals felt the need to continue learning to make up for the loss of social contact, which can also be a source of new knowledge and information.

LinkedIn free courses

“Regardless of where you are at in your career, it is worth picking up new skills or honing your current ones, during this time,” Ang said. “For job seekers, honing interviewing skills and learning to grow and tap on networks may be useful. For professionals, skills related to remote working are essential to hone. For leaders, understanding how to manage teams virtually, keeping team members engaged, and the organizational culture alive is important. In addition, soft skills remain relevant across a wide range of jobs. Creativity, Persuasion, Collaboration, Adaptability, Emotional intelligence rank as the top five soft skills in 2020.”

Currently, there are 440 free LinkedIn courses until the end of June which job seekers and professionals can avail themselves of to discover new skills or upskill. It can also be a way to cope with the new reality of restricted movements or working from home for the long haul.

For jobseekers, it means learning entirely new skills in the face of a tough job market or even improving the skills they currently possess. For small-to-medium businesses, this may mean learning how to maintain client relationships remotely, or understanding how to protect their finances in challenging times.

WFH skills

Working from home skills has seen dramatic growth since the onset of COVID-19. The top courses were: “Anxiety Management” at an increase of +10,025%, “Zoom” at an increase of +6,751%, and “Virtual Work” at +4,977%. The increase is significant among managers and job seekers, as well as those in the roles of Sales, Administrative, and Human Resources.

“Learning new ways of working in the current climate or being open to reskilling and upskilling opportunities will also ensure that professionals continue to gain transferable skills that might be useful for the future,” Ang said. “For example, today, remote working is increasingly an expectation in a multigenerational workforce. In fact, a global survey showed that 45% of senior leaders say they’re considering a more permanent shift to virtual events or conferences, and 44% say they’re evaluating more permanent remote work policies. This may indicate that it is here to stay.”