By now, everyone is fully aware of the traditional lanyard badge. They are in use everywhere. But an exciting new trend is the deployment of digital badges. The number of uses is being talked about from COVID-19 vaccination validation to job site access control to skills assessment and more.
Where Did The E-Badge Trend Start?
While the digital badge is certainly a useful tool for employers, the education system may be the genesis of the trend. One study by the University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) found that millennials are driving the rise of alternative credentials, noting that “90 percent of educational institutions are offering credentials and digital badges, in part, to serve their millennial students, who favor badging and certificates to traditional degrees.”1
What Exactly Is an E-Badge?
The interesting thing is that most of us consider badging to be something containing a photo or identification. However, the biggest consideration should be that the badge answers these three questions clearly:
- Who did something?
- What did they do?
- Who says they did it?
This can be anything from identification, certifications, or agility in a particular field and evidence of achievement. And all of this can be rolled into evidence of employment or employment eligibility.2
Because digital badges use a “backpack” system, aggregating a person’s digital credentials from a variety of issuers, they are uniquely capable of answering the essential questions posed above. Additionally, IBM cites that, “94% of survey respondents said IBM digital badges improve their employability…provid[ing] verifiable, trusted achievements, which contrasts with the self-assertions many professionals promote on sites like LinkedIn.”3
How Can I Be Sure This Thing Is Legit?
As with all good things, there is some bad: fraudulent activity. This is where a background screening partner comes into play. Since the beginning of badging, users have determined how to subvert the process and steal identities showing accomplishments that they have not earned. Landing a new job, higher income, and prestige are all motivating factors for those individuals.
How can you protect your company and your employees? A successful e-badge program will include facial recognition technology and a comprehensive background check tied to the badge itself, allowing for positive ID and continuous monitoring of the status of employment eligibility and credentials. This is for the record.
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