Economics/Business

What is Corporate University/Characteristics and functions/Advantages

Large companies are already incorporating the Corporate University into their processes , responsible for the continuous training and qualification of their employees. 

In this sense, companies such as Petrobras, Accor Hotels and Banco Brasil, indicate this market trend, which is to invest and install more and more Corporate Universities at all business scales: small, medium and large.

If you want to participate in this new cycle of renewal and qualification of professionals and ensure that your company is in a context of quality in the market, read on.

What is Corporate University 

Corporate University (UC) or Business University are the names given to the tool or platform for qualifying professionals within a given company . 

In other words, the UC is an educational entity focused on training and developing a company’s internal staff, being linked to that organization. 

Therefore, this tool is responsible for creating, making available and replicating specific knowledge of the market in which the business is inserted. 

UC is extremely important for growth, training and improvement strategies for the various processes of a company. 

Furthermore, the Corporate University presents itself as a complete and continuous corporate education program, which offers training, technical courses, qualifications, lectures, specializations, among other forms of content in a dynamic, fast and efficient manner. The main objective is to prepare the company for the competitive market .

But to achieve this goal, the corporate university and its functions need to be aligned with the company’s organizational culture .

Characteristics and functions of a corporate university

The CUs can have different characteristics and functions, depending on the company in which they are inserted. 

But some basic aspects must be respected and put into practice so that the program is efficient for employees and for the company.

First, it is important to remember that the main function of a Corporate University is to educate and train , on several important matters for the business, in order to reach improvements and adaptations of daily tasks, goals and customer service. 

But for this to happen, the contents must be organized in an integrated manner, so that the development of competences does not happen in an isolated and punctual way.

Thus, it is possible to guarantee continuous learning and professional evolution that will culminate in greater productivity and growth for the company.

Therefore, it is the function of a UC to create a cycle of evolution and professional growth applied to the work environment, in other words, directly improving the flow of activity. 

However, in addition to technical issues, professional development must include two more aspects: internal relationships and dissemination of the organizational culture. 

The Corporate University also qualifies and develops relational aspects of the professional’s daily life, focusing on the development of autonomy, teamwork, motivation and leadership. 

This aspect facilitates empowerment in people management, as it contributes to the development of autonomous employees who control their growth within the company, which in the long term promotes the growth of active voices and leaders in the business.

In addition, the UC’s connection with the company must be extremely in tune, as it becomes a strategic tool for disseminating the organizational culture. 

This means that, by focusing more on practice than on theory, the company’s DNA is inserted daily into the work of employees, which helps to create more distant links, a sense of belonging and reliability.

Advantages and benefits of implementing a UC

The Corporate University, due to all these educational and training functions, has several advantages for companies that invest in this tool. 

Thus, the benefits will appear in the short, medium and long term. Furthermore, your business only tends to gain by investing in knowledge.

Among the advantages, we can highlight the following:

  • professional and business growth with agility and permanence;
  • strengthening the entrepreneurial brand, as it highlights the concern for employees;
  • guarantee of constant development of talents   and their retention;
  • diffusion and absorption of the company’s DNA;
  • integration of employees;
  • strategies for prioritizing the solution of the company’s gaps, which optimize the learning processes;
  • accessibility to innovations and new technologies, as it provides updating and modernization of employees;
  • flexibilization of study hours, which offers autonomy to employees;
  • increasing the company’s competitiveness in relation to the market, as well as its profit and profitability;
  • content replication and monitoring of progress and skills;
  • increased performance and individual and collective motivation;
  • improvements in communication and internal relationships;
  • equal and horizontal training of the team as a whole;
  • aid in more efficient onboarding.

Types of Corporate Universities 

Due to the several advantages and possibilities of UCs, currently, there are some basic types of Corporate Universities that meet different business demands. Here, we’ll explain about some of them. Follow up!

virtual UC

Some corporate universities may have virtual courses and training through platforms and software. 

This modality brings greater flexibility to employees, less infrastructure costs and greater standardization and integration of courses.

face-to-face UC

The on-site UCs offer courses and training that take place in person, that is, there is a demand for infrastructure and the availability of compatible hours among employees. 

Despite these efforts, the on-site courses generate a stronger bond with the company and guarantee a more direct professional qualification . 

Usually, they have a little more traditional methodologies and immersion activities.

UC gamified

Some UCs use games for the professional qualification process . Gamification brings real-time performance tracking and generates instant engagement. 

From games, trainings can work on issues such as: achievement of objectives, missions, scores, ranking and teamwork. 

mixed UC

In most companies the mixed modality is used, which involves Corporate Universities that make use of: virtual platforms, games and on-site courses. 

These UCs are currently the most recommended, as they bring the interaction and bonding of the face-to-face, enhance the modernization and flexibility of the virtual, producing the engagement of games. 

Furthermore, they reduce the need for infrastructure and do not limit distance training.

Expanded UC (UCA)

As the name implies, the UCA expands the functions of corporate universities. Furthermore, it further integrates performance management and focuses on high performance and investments to leverage results . 

In addition, the expanded corporate universities bring: information repositories with search tools, community and networks, which make it possible to offer these courses to external audiences , such as customers, suppliers and others.

Outsourced UC: partnerships with traditional universities or corporate training centers

For financial or infrastructure reasons, it is often necessary to choose to work with universities that are not incorporated into the company itself. 

In this way, partnerships with traditional universities become a way to maintain the constant qualification of employees. 

Typically, these partnerships provide access to ready-made courses, with high technical skills and degrees of training (in addition to certificates). 

But there are restrictions, due to the legislation of the MEC (Ministry of Education) and also limitations in the matter of course integration, as the activities follow a more traditional and punctual methodology outside the company.

How the Corporate University works in companies

UCs are internal platforms for companies that provide various courses and training in different areas, known as CHA: Knowledge, Skills and Attitudes.

In this case, professionals must be previously registered, which will provide them with access to the courses. 

In addition, it must be clear to the employee what their qualification goals are and the deadline for completing the courses, according to the professional and their area of ​​work. 

Furthermore, on-site courses must be previously informed to employees and most training must take place during working hours.

How to create and deploy a UC in your company

To implement this set of activities, guarantee results and present an integrated system for the professional growth of its employees, it is necessary to follow some important steps. 

If you want to know everything you need to do to build a Corporate University in your business, stay tuned for this step by step.

Assess the need for UC in your company

Through research, conversations and in-depth knowledge of the market, assess the need for UC and the structure of the company available and possible for on-site courses. 

Also, raise the demands for content by sector, based on innovations in your business market.

Planning

From the data collected and the compression of which type of UC will be more efficient and productive for your company, plan in detail the learning strategies, methodologies and possible training systems.

set the goals 

Simultaneously, in a clear and synthetic way, establish the objectives of the courses, trainings and lectures. 

Make the growth goals, strategies, indicators and metrics very clear. 

Remember to also make the company’s DNA very evident in all activities and assess their consistency with the organizational culture.

Choose the platform for the Corporate University

It is important to choose the best platform to support the types of courses and training proposed for your business. 

Currently, software linked to Learning Management System (LMS) or Learning Management System is used. 

To choose the best LMS, it is recommended to do some analysis, for example, check if:

  • the platform offers performance indicators; 
  • there is the possibility of offering several courses simultaneously and for different groups;
  • there is the possibility of support for different content formats;
  • there is a limitation on the number of users and whether this limit suits your business;
  • the cost-effectiveness is advantageous.

Select specific professionals to manage the platform and courses

From the previous analyses, select a specific professional to manage the platform and become responsible for training. 

If this is not possible, it is important to think about outsourced professionals to be responsible for this new sector of the company: the University.

Develop courses and content

After the selection of professionals, it is possible to prepare the courses and contents within the chosen platform. 

To build the courses, define the objectives of each discipline, the script, organize times for employees to participate to set up training and, if necessary, talk to specialists in the areas to have a technical evaluation of the content available.  

Publicize the Corporate University

It’s no use building a content platform and not engaging the main users: collaborators. 

So, invest time to disseminate information to employees and teams, maintaining constant communication about courses, doubts, suggestions, etc.

Track development and metrics — Knowledge Management

Once the Corporate University is at full steam, remember that knowledge needs constant investment. 

Track development and metrics, understand interests, engagement, possible day-to-day improvements and user satisfaction.

Also, look at the numbers, talk to employees, and monitor problems and improvements in practice.

Knowledge Management is part of people management and it is important to measure results through opinion, self-assessment, technical and long-term evaluation.

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