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Accel5 Enters the Corporate Market: An Interview with the Lead Product Manager

Accel5 is the newest corporate learning tool from EBSCO. See how it was conceived in this Q&A with Tad Goltra, Vice President of Product Management with EBSCO Corporate Solutions.

You recently launched Accel5. Can you describe the product?

Accel5 is a microlearning solution for employees looking to improve critical soft skills like leadership, teamwork, communication, innovation and many others.  It offers best practices from world-class business authors and executives in three formats: videos, summaries of business books and articles. The content is concise and actionable, making it an ideal solution for busy professionals.

Microlearning is something we’re hearing about more and more.  Why is it important for organizations to incorporate microlearning into their learning programs?

Employees are busier than ever and have trouble finding the time for in-person training or even e-learning courses. At the same time, skills development is critical for both employees and employers. Microlearning products such as Accel5 enable employees to enhance their skills in short bursts, whether on their commute or between meetings, making it possible to continue learning without having to make an extensive time commitment.

Additionally, millennials have different learning styles than previous generations and many prefer microlearning that they can self-direct. By offering microlearning resources such as Accel5, organizations can ensure they have resources that are relevant for their growing millennial employee population and demonstrate supporting different learning styles.

How is Accel5 different from other microlearning solutions in market?

Accel5 is unique in a few ways. First, it includes multiple content types to support different learning styles — videos, summaries of business books and articles. Accel5 also includes audio versions of the book summaries so it has video, audio and text covered.

Second, Accel5 features best practices from top business thinkers, such as Marshall Goldsmith, Daniel Pink, Liz Wiseman and many more. In fact, Accel5 includes content from 35 members of the Thinkers50, the premier global ranking of management thinkers.

Third, Accel5 is highly configurable rather than a one-size-fits-all solution. So, if an organization wants to highlight its own specific competencies and the content that is most relevant to it, that can easily be done.

Can you give some examples of topics explored in Accel5?

Accel5 includes a diverse collection of content, with thousands of individual items on hundreds of different soft skills or competencies. Examples of broad topics include teamwork, innovation, leadership, communication skills, diversity and many more. Some specific examples of topics from our video collection include: Rock the Room® – 5 Steps to a Great Presentation (Victoria Labalme) and Increase Performance By Providing the Why (Daniel Pink).

What was the thinking behind creating a collection of original videos?

While a lot of video content already exists, we felt there was a need for videos that are concise and actionable and that provide insights from key thought leaders. This is consistent with our approach toward creating business book summaries, and in fact many of our videos feature speakers who are also authors of articles as well as the books that are summarized in Accel5.  The feedback from customers has been overwhelmingly positive and we’ll be adding a few hundred more videos over the next year (on top of the 200+ we have already completed).

What’s next for Accel5?

We’ll be adding new content, literally every day, to support continuous learning and ensure our content is fresh and relevant. This includes new videos, as well as book summaries and articles. Additionally, we’ll be adding new features based on the requests we get from our customers. For example, we’ve recently added support for single sign-on.

Interested to see what Accel5 has to offer?

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Tad Goltra

Tad Goltra

Vice President of Product Management, EBSCO Corporate Solutions

Tad Goltra is Vice President of Product Management, EBSCO Corporate Solutions, where he is responsible for product lines serving corporations and government institutions. Goltra has led the expansion of EBSCO’s Corporate Learning product line from a single offering into a robust suite of microlearning products that includes summaries of business books, collections of articles, videos, and audio. He recently launched Accel5, a microlearning solution to help employees strengthen soft skills, featuring best practices from leading business authors, coaches and executives.