Bestr: make your skills count
Education to employment
Bestr is the platform that reduces the gap between people’s skills, companies’ requirements and education.
Bestr discards and goes beyond the traditional advertisement/resumé mechanism, it moves in advance of the offer of a position or of the candidature for work. It is not an e-learning system or an education centre, nor is it a board for job advertisements or a social network.
Bestr is a meeting point amongst learners, companies and education.
Each of us has acquired skills and competences inside and outside our educational path, and each of us wants to use these skills to their maximum, to express them in their best way, to enrich them, to prove them to possible collaborators and build up a unique professional profile based on them. Bestr facilitates these possibilities.
Bestr changes the perspective with which we regard our own skills and competences and those required by the world of work. It changes the way in which we live and express our professional role, turning it into a lifelong learning path. It can change society, making it more innovative; more motivated; more merit-oriented; more transparent.
Badges: from traditional CVs to E-portfolios
Bestr is the platform of skills - their faces are the Open Badges.
A skill is a specific ability employed to accomplish a goal. A skill can be technical (hard) or behavioural (soft), and may form just a small part of what a degree or a more general certificate represents. However, all skills deserve to be recognised and valued.
How can we recognise those skills acquired in informal and wide-ranging contexts, outside formal education? How can we give value to the skills, competences and achievements that cannot be expressed by traditional academic degrees? To answer these questions, Mozilla Foundation has created the open standard of Open Badges, upon which Bestr is based.
This standard is already being used all around the world by companies, universities and education providers, allowing the recognition of skills acquired and accomplishments achieved over a lifetime, presented digitally and securely.
On Bestr, users are accompanied in the process of recognising their skills and identifying those that are useful for their growth; one by one, badges are thus identified, verified and issued by means of the platform to individuals, who can use the system to accumulate, classify and publish their Open Badges on all digital channels.
The accumulated Badges constitute a personal digital e-Portfolio that is quick to read, search and assess: a CV 2.0 in which an individual’s professional richness and experience are valued, going beyond the rigidity and generality that characterise traditional curriculum vitae.
Lifelong learning, professional growth, employability
Bestr is an opportunity.
For learners, the ones who never stop growing, it is the possibility to validate and value what they have learnt over the years and - with the personal e-Portfolio - make it visible to all. Bestr is a source of inspiration for professional improvement with excellent stories and successful similar paths, and provides the chance to expand and develop skills with certified education offers. Bestr knows and reveals what the companies in the territory are looking for and how to propose oneself in an exclusive marketplace.
Bestr is made for those companies that are searching for people who really know “how to do”, with specific and dynamic skills acquired not only through the traditional paths of study but also directly at work or elsewhere. By browsing through badges, a company can choose the ones that represent its needs and access valuable, pre-selected and pre-verified profiles in order to identify the individual that best suits its enterprise. A company can also issue badges itself for branding purposes, or to personally certify the skills that are at the very heart of the company, or to assist in the management of internal career progression.
For universities and education providers, it is the opportunity to implement current legislation that recognises the value of skills acquired anyhow (Italian Decree Law 13/2013) and make their students’ skills more usable and quantifiable, increasing the value of courses of study and valorizing their content by relating it to the requirements of the production sector of the territory, so providing learners with new prospects of formation. By meeting companies’ needs and the content required by the market, education providers are able to offer the verification and certification of skills, expanding their market and positioning themselves among digital innovators.
Work in progress
Bestr has taken its first steps and is growing before our eyes.
Bestr was created and is promoted by Cineca, the italian Interuniversity Consortium that is in charge of promoting the use of the most advanced information processing systems supporting scientific and technological research, particularly in the field of education.
As of June 2015, the first pilot projects with selected institutions and companies are being launched: students, employees and collaborators will receive Badges to certify their skills, and will become the first beta users of Bestr. In this way, Bestr will become richer and richer in content and people and will open its doors to all users by the end of the year. Everybody can be informed at any time about the evolution of Bestr and keep track of all the Badges that will be created over time.
Everyone is a protagonist in Bestr and can play an active role through the blog, which constantly updates on-going projects and news in the fields of education and the work market as well as methodological and technological innovation.
Share and communicate through the social networks: you can follow Bestr on Twitter at the profile @joinBestr. Other channels to come in the near future.
Bridge the gap, start the countdown!