Salesforce Trailhead Makes The Paper Resume Obsolete

Technology PCmag

Want to show off your Salesforce skills? The San Francisco-based customer relationship management (CRM) has updated its Trailhead program to provide users with a distinct, Salesforce-specific digital profile showcasing skills, accomplishments, and experience.

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Trailhead is Salesforce's free online learning platform devoted entirely to teaching people to use Salesforce. Rather than spending hundreds of dollars on an IT certification or paying a couple hundred grand to get a degree in IT, Trailhead is designed to democratize learning by providing free access to building Salesforce skills. By using Trailhead novice users develop Salesforce skills, and advanced users become Salesforce experts. You can use Trails, or guided learning paths, that are quick, easy, and fun ways to learn about Salesforce, or Modules, which are smaller, bite-sized lessons to learn about a specific task.

Today's release gives you the ability to create a profile that lists all of the badges, points earned, and tasks accomplished while using the platform to learn Salesforce skills. Additionally, as with a traditional resume, Trailhead profiles will feature your job experience, personal information, and links to your social media accounts. You can also promote these skills using a "Vanity URL," which is essentially an ungated profile that you can post on traditional resumes, in email bios, or on social media. Additionally, Salesforce has unveiled an easier way for viewers to see what you have accomplished within Trailhead. The Skills Graph presents Trailhead on a personal graph within a user's profile. The graph consolidates a user's entire badge history into one clear and concise visual, while highlighting top skills.

Prior to the launch, you would have had to send screengrabs of your profile, or give someone access to your profile to exhibit your Trailhead skills. Now, you can simply head to the bottom of their profile and toggle profile visibility from private to public. In the same section you can type in a Vanity URL. If the URL isn't taken, it becomes your new Trailhead Vanity URL. If it's taken, you'll be asked to try again. Once you've chosen a URL, you can begin sending your profile out into the wild.

"When we launched in 2014 we wanted to empower people to learn these skills to get jobs," said Sarah Franklin, the EVP and GM of Trailhead. "But it's also a platform for showcasing these skills. Traditional resumes have become stale and outdated. It's just a bunch of text and a laundry-list of job experiences. With the [Trailhead] Profile we wanted to change the game. It's a more definitive representation of a learner's skills. We wanted to show accomplishments with ranks and badges and points earned, which are all far more indicative of your skills than just plain text."

The Trailhead Story

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Trailhead has more than 600,000 users, triple the number of users it had at this time last year. Learners have earned more than 4.5 million badges and completed more than 19 million challenges on the platform.

Late last year Salesforce introduced Trailmixes, which are the company's online learning equivalent of Spotify playlists. The way you'd compose a playlist of your favorite songs to share with the Spotify community, you'd compose a Trailmix of your favorite Trailhead activities to share with other Trailhead users. Any Trailhead content can be added to a new or existing Trailmix. For example: Check out the "Build Your Developer Career on Salesforce" mix to start from scratch as a Salesforce developer, or the "Build Your Admin Career on Salesforce" mix, which will get you started on your journey to helping companies implement Salesforce. The courses aren't slimy Salesforce ads: The Developer course alone includes 49 hours and 50 minutes of learning material.

Salesforce doesn't charge anyone to use Trailhead, and it doesn't cost anything to create a Trailmix. Salesforce is hoping that Trailhead helps Salesforce clients take better advantage of Salesforce tools and services. The company recently started a partnership with more than 70 universities, community colleges, workforce development programs, and educational nonprofits to bring Trailhead into the classroom as an addition to the school's existing curriculum.

This article originally appeared on PCMag.com.