Degreed not what you need? Or has someone planted the seed that there’s a better way to lead your learning culture? Whatever led you to this point, you’ll be pleased to let you know we’ll be walking you through the pros and cons of Degreed and seven alternative learning systems and platforms in this article. It’s as simple as that, so let’s get on with it!
What’s the deal with Degreed?
Founded in 2012 with the bold goal to ‘jailbreak the degree’, Degreed aims to “connect learning and career growth to business opportunities through one single, fluid skill-development experience”. And to give people the skills to overcome hurdles at work.
However, if you’ve been to university, being overloaded with textbooks will be a familiar feeling. And as we’re about to see, it seems like Degreed might have ended up becoming the thing it set out to jailbreak. In some ways, at least.
Head to Degreed’s website , and you’ll realise it’s a bit of enigma. Beyond the idea of creating learning pathways, measuring skills and providing analytics of progress, there’s not much to sink your teeth into. So, as you’ll see throughout this list, the pros and cons we’ve compiled come from genuine customer reviews of each platform.
What we do know is that Degreed brings together a huge amount of content from a wide range of sources. Reportedly, it boasts more than 200,000 courses and resources that it has curated from over 1,000 providers. And two ways that it makes these easier to access is through a well-liked search function and easy filters.
There is a tool for bookmarking content you find online, although that does appear to be limited to saving it only when you find it. Finally, it provides you with visibility of what other people are learning and discuss those topics with them, helping drive social learning.
Despite those functions, several reviewers highlighted that such a large pool of content can be daunting to learners, especially given that it’s not always presented in a user-friendly order. It’s one of the many reasons people seek out AI-based learning platforms that recommend relevant content based on goals and behaviour.
Having to be added as a collaborator for full visibility and understanding which resources you’ve shared are two reporting pain points for Degreed users. Others flagged a lack of guidance on how to get the most out of the platform as an issue. Lastly, others found it difficult to add content from outside of the platform. If only they had an easy Browser Extension that let them do that everywhere…
How this list works
Before we get stuck, there are a couple of quick things to point out. Firstly, we know that you have at least a rough idea of what learning platforms do, so our aim is to highlight the key pros and cons, not list every single feature.
Secondly, as we mentioned, we’ve checked out loads of genuine customer reviews to inform our list of what’s hot and what’s not for everything alternative. We read the reviews so that you don’t have to!
The 7 best alternatives to Degreed
Remember the good old days of learning? Us neither! The truth is that what you used to get from a traditional LMS are pretty much the basic requirements. We’re one of the new kids on the learning block, and that means we’re more concerned with how learning should look today.
So, that’s what we create. Something that reflects what learners, leader and L&D people really need today. That means giving them the tools they need to find knowledge when they need it and develop new skills.
1. Find the information you need, when you need it, everywhere you already work.
If finding knowledge means leaving the platforms and apps you already use at work, is that helping or harming your productivity? It’s absolutely the latter because that knowledge is most useful in the moments you need it. That’s when you should be able to find it!
HowNow brings all your scattered learning together to create a central knowledge base, one that integrates with the apps and tools you already use. And that’s how you can find the resources need, everywhere your team already works.
There’s 3.5 billion Google searches every day, so it’s almost certainly a habit that’s ingrained in your learners. You can either fight against that or work with it…
Our Browser Extensions searches for and surfaces all the relevant resources in your knowledge base, every time someone searches in Google. Here’s how it works:
How about a few numbers that should help convince you why this is all so important? 49% of learners prefer to find information at the point of need, which is handy because it helps cut down on the average 25% of our week that we spend searching for knowledge. By how much? As much as 35%, meaning you can gain back time and help people become more productive.
2. Democratising knowledge sharing.
70% of what we learn at work happens socially, and it’s why the top-down learning approach of the traditional LMS has become outdated. Why should a few people in your company decide what trickles down to all those wanting to learn? All of the tools we showed you above help you democratise who can capture and share knowledge.
Everyone is your team is an expert in something, so give them the platform to share their wisdom. That’s where our Nuggets come in! They enable you to capture knowledge in the flow of work and share it with whoever you think it’ll be relevant to. It might be an article you’ve come across, an update to a company or document or just something for their own experiences.
3. Measure skills instead of ticking training boxes
Just because you’ve completed some training, it doesn’t mean you’ve developed any of the skills you need to do your job better. That’s why you need a platform that helps you understand which skill gaps exist and are holding your team back. Not just helping you tick boxes to show that a course has been completed.
We analyse more than 500,00 live job roles so that you can benchmark the skills in your team against those that are in-demand. We also help you build dynamic skills profiles for everyone in your team, through a combination peer- and self-review.
Next up, it’s time to close those skill gaps! HowNow’s your place to create custom pathways for learning, which you can personalise for each employee. But with all your knowledge and resources in one place, they can indulge in some self-directed learning whenever you please.
4. Get content recommendations related to your behaviour and interests
Our goal’s simple, we want to connect you to the right amount of content from the right sources, helping you find the knowledge you need more efficiently. That’s why we use AI to recommend content based on your role, goals, behaviour and interests.
The more you use the platform, the better we get at understanding the types of content and sources you find most useful. We also take into account what colleagues and similar people found helpful and use that to provide recommendations that get better and better.
That doesn’t mean you can’t indulge your urge for a learning adventure. Use HowNow to head out there and find great resources for yourself. Subscribe to channels for the subjects that you find interesting and use those as part of your toolkit for developing the new skills you’ve always wanted.
5. We’re driving performance and development across 10,000+ teams at forward-thinking companies.
What do Gymshark, Infinity Works, Investec, Telefonica, Telenor and Deutsche Bank have in common? They’re all using HowNow to onboard, upskill and enable their teams around the globe.
Take HowNow for a spin and book your free trial today!
The obvious one might be that we’ve not been around as long as some of the other products on this list, it’s the elephant in our virtual classroom (yes we’ve got one of them too). But is that really a bad thing?
Sometimes you get the impression that companies who’ve been around for forever think they know everything. Nobody knows everything, not even the people who have an amazing central knowledge base.
Good news is that we’ve not been around as long, and that means we’re always learning from and listening to our users. That means we’ll always take your ideas and feedback on board. Another pro might as well be how good we are at turning a con into something positive.
It’s the level of detail in reporting that users often flag in their positive comments. Lessonly allows you to report on single learners as well as groups, and find insights on individual resources. That’s the admins, but what about learners themselves? One of the most praised features is the ability to self-test through Flip and Reveal Cars, elevator practice pitch scenarios and more.
Source: Software Advice
Customising and connectivity are two common themes in Lessonly reviews. Some highlighted limitations on fonts, course designs and the ability to add your own branding, while its integration capabilities seem to be a little less impressive than other options. It’s a similar issue when it comes to searching for content, which could limit its use as a central knowledge base. Lastly, some revealed their disappointment in being unable to highlight content they’d like to revisit later, if only there was a way to do that.
Reviewers seemed to love the look and feel of Docebo, especially the drag and drop way of building admin dashboards and personalised pages for learners. Connecting people with the right content is made easier through AI, as Docebo automatically analyses and tags content. For all you social learning fans, its Q&A feature allows subject matter experts to share insights and create a culture where they learn from each other. All good, right? As you’ll see from the below review, it’s a yes, but there could be more out there…
A common bugbear was the number of bugs in new features and having to bear with them while they were fixed following release. Also, despite being to drag and drop templates into dashboards, the custom reporting capabilities left some feeling underwhelmed. Others flagged that customer service was limited on certain plans, while a lack of integration with other tools was a concern for some.
LearnUpon is often cited as an LMS that’s easy to set up and can scale with your business. It’s capable of hosting vast user numbers at once, but small teams still give glowing feedback. Mixing and matching your content types lets you create courses and modules that meet your requirements, bringing in surveys, exams and certifications.
Social learning is enabled through the platform’s forum, while recognition is made possible through badges, point and leaderboards. On the integrations front, it allows you to incorporate the platform into your HR software, webinar tools and even Degreed.
Reporting was a noticeable pain point among reviewers, who were quick to flag some of its limitations. Part of that comes from the issue of accessibility at the manager level, which sits below admin. Also, those on lower price tiers discussed limited levels of customisation and only being able to edit their branding and colours.
The review above highlights that there might not be as much freedom for learning that people crave. Another review supports this idea: “It would be nice to have more layers of program curation that provide the ability to curate multiple learning paths into more complex programs.”
5. Absorb LMS
Accessing their library of pre-built courses from your first day using Absorb LMS is one of the key pros. Users also highlighted the ease of customising to your brand, adding your own resources and moving things around with the drag and drop style. For users, tests and quizzes built into the platform can help understand how they’re progressing, and that plays into the extent of reporting in real-time.
Issues around reporting were common in reviews for Absorb LMS, one even claimed that they “leave a lot to be desired”. The reasons? Limitations on how much you can customise what’s featured in the reports that you export and issues with reporting on courses that contain subcategories.
We might have highlighted that built-in assessments were a useful feature in our pros, but others found them to be limited. Finally, how easy the platform is to use overall was flagged as an issue. The review above shows that transitioning from a platform that Absorb acquired was a challenge, while the one below claims that it’s overwhelming to use at first and creates a very steep learning curve.
More than 130 courses are available to Thrive users as it stands, with users praising these off-the-shelf e-learning modules. This is a platform with a focus on microlearning, so they aim to cut out the unnecessary information. However, as we’ll explain in the cons, some felt this made the content quite limited in places. Others stated that despite having triple figures of courses readily available, they look and feel different enough. Thrive also uses AI to recommend content and drive social learning among your people.
Coming back to the microlearning-first approach, this was a pain point for a number of users who felt that if left some courses feeling like they needed to add more resources beyond these basics. However, with the off-the-shelf format, many felt that they couldn’t expand on courses or customise them – meaning they were limited when incorporating their preferred content types such as tests and quizzes.
Looop‘s easy to use, and people love them for it – pretty much every other review points it out. How simple it is to create and distribute content is likely to be a key reason, which means little guidance is needed to get up to speed with the platform. Their integrations with other platforms and the mobile app make it easier to find resources when you need them. Lastly, you can automate communications to employees through their Campaigns feature, helping you send reminders and resources in a timely and accurate fashion.
We’ve praised drag and drop a lot here so far. So, it’s a shame that we have to drag that feature to a negative place and drop some criticism on Looop. Several reviewers bemoaned their inability to do this when re-ordering courses. Limited gamification was another issue.
In honesty, a lot of the criticisms start with phrases like ‘it might be nice’ or ‘it would be cool if’, so you can tell that people like Looop. However, it’s important that we flag what followed their nice openers because they might be sticking points for you. In short, these are better event features, more detailed user insights, the ability to view all resources in a workspace, and making the content a little less samey.
Which alternative is right for you?
Honestly, we won’t know until we speak with you. Drop us a message and we can discuss your learning needs.