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Future of Work

Q&A: Accenture’s Danielle Brady on myTrailhead and Continuous Learning

Danielle Brady is the Managing Director of Global Operations for the Salesforce Business Group at Accenture. She helps her clients face disruptions within their markets and looks for ways in which Accenture can add the most value for true business transformation. In her free time, you can find her behind her camera taking pictures of her daughter and exploring everything California has to offer.

Danielle is an avid user of the Trailhead learning platform. In the following interview, she shares her experience participating in the customer pilot program for myTrailhead–Salesforce’s customizable learning experience platform that empowers brands to foster a culture of learning with their own content.

Tell us about your role at Accenture. What’s it like being the Managing Director of Global Operations for the Salesforce business group?

I started in this role a year and a half ago and have had the opportunity to work with our leaders in the Salesforce business group to help drive innovation, learning, and re-skilling and provide top talent for our clients. It’s an exciting role and a great place to be in the Salesforce practice.

Before you started using myTrailhead, what were some of the challenges you had with your own learning programs?

Accenture’s learning philosophy is ‘time away to learn, learning all the time” and we aim to do both. Over the last several years, our upskilling program has heavily relied on traditional classroom training. But being able to get our people out of the field and into the classroom for a week, that’s challenging and can even require a 10–12 week lead time to coordinate. It’s also timely and expensive for us to have to pull people off projects.

What is Accenture using myTrailhead for?

myTrailhead enables us to scale learning in a way that works best for our busy employees on the go. When we were a part of the pilot program for myTrailhead, we developed content around three trails: Leadership DNA, Improve Your Networking and Social Influence and Introduction to Artificial Intelligence. We used a lot of the content that is available on Trailhead combined with our internal training. All of our learners really liked the integration of the public and private content on myTrailhead. They like that learning is broken down into small increments and the sense of accomplishment they get from earning points and badges along the way.

What’s the biggest benefit that you’ve seen from myTrailhead?

One of the biggest benefits we’ve seen is being able to track how and what our employees are learning. A myTrailhead feature called Trail Tracker not only gives us a complete view of our employees’ skills and expertise but it tracks, assigns and reports on badges earned by our team with dashboards. We created an entire competition within Accenture for our managing directors to earn badges and encouraged them to hit Mountaineer status. We had a lot of fun with the gamification element and even had a leaderboard going. Employees completed learning while commuting to client sites since it’s an easy and accessible tool to use on the go.

What’s been the employees’ reaction to myTrailhead so far?

We’ve heard a lot of positive reviews. Employees like that it feels seamless to move between the Accenture-branded content and the public content and that they can earn Accenture badges in addition to Trailhead badges on one unified profile. The biggest benefit of all is that microlearning, breaking up an hour of training into chunks, help people register accomplishments.

For a company considering myTrailhead, can you share a piece of advice?

Take advantage of the amazing resources for planning your myTrailhead implementation from start to finish. Don’t assume that because you have content, you will be ready to go. Accenture has an exhaustive supply of courses, learning boards, and instruction videos but they were in a very traditional format. The myTrailhead platform helps bring a lot of things together around gamification and microlearning, which helps make educating people easier. Expect a learning curve as your content writers develop fun, interactive modules for myTrailhead. It’s all worth it because the continuous learning aspects of myTrailhead can really help influence the culture at your company for the better.

What do you hope to accomplish with myTrailhead in the next year?

In our pilot, we had about 55 people working with myTrailhead, and I’d like to see the number grow significantly – it just makes sense for our learners to constantly have access to the skills they need to best advise our customers.


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