RWA Launches Open Badges

Today we’re very excited to be launching a new service on The OBELISK which has been in development for quite a while: Open Badges.

Open Badges is a new online standard developed by Mozilla which is designed to recognise and verify learning and skills, much like the badges we received when we were younger for swimming or in the scouts. Contributors to the project have included NASA, Disney and The Smithsonian.

RWA are now a listed issuer of Open Badges and through the OBELISK we can now issue badges to users who complete certain learning and competence tasks, which are verified by our OBELISK technology.

So what does this mean?

The idea behind Open Badges is that a learner can accumulate them from a variety of sources and store them in a ‘backpack’ as a means to showcase the skills they have either on social networking platforms, CVs, websites or blogs. The following diagram highlights this well:

RWA Open Badges

Individuals need to sign up for a free Mozilla Backpack and this allows them to store any badges they receive in a secure place and create ‘collections’ for show later on. Open Badges are not just icons, they contain meta data to verify what the user got it for, who issued the badge and when it expires.

Once you have a badge you can display it on your social networks, websites, blogs and CVs or show them to your Supervisor at your appraisal. As a firm they would be excellent to promote to your clients that you take training and competence seriously by using a product such as the OBELISK and to promote why that should make you a better choice of broker.

To start with we have launched our first OBELISK badge – The OBELISK T&C Badge. This is awarded to individuals who have signed up to OBELISK and completed their first gap analysis assessment. The badge is designed to show that a user a) takes T&C seriously enough to sign up for OBELISK and b) has taken the first steps to monitoring their competence through an initial gap analysis.

OBELISK_TC_Badge

This badge can be added to social networks:

FB_Badge

Linkedin_Badge

Twitter_Badge

And can also be added to a company website:

Web_Badge

In the next few days the OBELISK will automatically email out the badge to all those who qualify and continue to do so when new users sign up with instructions for what to do with them.

We are also launching new badges along the following themes:

  • CPD Badge
  • TCF Badge
  • Money Laundering Badge
  • Client Money Badge
  • PI Masterclass Badge
  • Claims Masterclass Badge
  • OBELISK User of the Month Badge
  • OBELISK Firm of the Year Badge
  • RWA Compliance Healthcheck Badge
  • Gold OBELISK Badge
  • Question Writer Badge
  • Course Writer Badge
  • Supervisor Online Badge

There are a lot of possibilities, some will be hard to get and some will be easier; and there will also be some hidden badges along the way for those that really want to engage with the learning experience. For those topics where it is good practice to re-take a gap analysis annually (TCF for example) then the badges will be date stamped so that people will know the user’s knowledge is up to date.

Motivation

We live in an age where interest-driven learning and mastery are at the forefront of personal and professional development, which means that more so than ever staff are looking to better themselves and learn new skills. Badges can be used as a roadmap to aid learners and give them direction for finding further learning and knowledge gaps.

What makes the OBELISK stand out from other broker assessment platforms is that the RWA OBELISK team aim to promote an online environment for users who are motivated to undertake regular monthly assessments and learning. The team are continuously working on new content, setting up new assessments, and investing their time and skills into developing the technology behind it.

Our vision is to have every user of the OBELISK logging in at least once a month to undertake a gap analysis assessment and to engage with the learning experience as part of their professional development. In return for that commitment we will reward those who do take their T&C and compliance seriously with the recognition that they are doing a good job.

For badges to work properly there needs to success criteria or pre-defined assessment exercises. This is why it is ideal for a platform like the OBELISK where assessment is core to its delivery. Our unique benchmarking facility allows us to measure the norms and assign badges based on the information we collect.

The more badges that we can issue for good technical knowledge assessed through gap analysis, the higher the standards of broking knowledge will become, which can only be good for the customer and the industry as a whole.

- Written by Tom Wood, 13th August 2013

Tom Wood RWA

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