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Companies everywhere are reinventing themselves around their customers, and they’re increasingly hiring people with business critical Salesforce skills. This “Age of the Customer” has created a global economic engine; by 2018, Salesforce and its ecosystem of customers and partners will create 1 million jobs and generate $272 billion in GDP impact worldwide (IDC).

These roles, ranging from Salesforce Administrators and Developers to Marketing and Sales Managers, see 30 percent of new hires with Salesforce skills earning more than $100,000. And qualified job seekers in the Salesforce economy are earning a $20,000 salary premium in the U.S.

In an industry known for boot camps that charge a premium for practical training, we think we have something special. Starting today, job seekers and employees worldwide can accelerate their careers through Trailhead, a fun, easy and free way to learn Salesforce skills online. Available on desktop or mobile — and languages including German, Japanese and French — Trailhead rewards learners with badges to market in-demand skills to prospective and current employers alike; integration with Linkedin will also make it easy for recruiters to search for qualified candidates.

When we quietly launched Trailhead in beta to the community last year, we couldn’t have imagined the response that would follow. Learners have passed more than 1,000,000 challenges, earning more than 250,000 badges. Beta users include Gita Borosvky, the American Red Cross’s Director of CRM Programs and Chris Rodriguez, Demand Generation Manager for LeadGenius; both learned Salesforce through Trailhead to accelerate their careers — Gita from secretarial work and Chris after serving in the United States Air Force.

Today’s global launch is the first step in a long journey. Over the coming weeks and months, we’ll continue to add trails for our users – expanding into sales, service, marketing, analytics, apps, IoT and more — so they can learn Salesforce and do great things with their careers.

We invite everyone to try Trailhead for free at trailhead.salesforce.com. There’s a trail for everyone to get started as an admin or making apps; we look forward to seeing your badges and new skills!

Adam Seligman, Senior Vice President, Developer Relations and Trailhead GM