Adobe Digital Academy: Empowering High Potential Talent through an Apprenticeship Based Solution | Maher & Maher
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Talent Talks

Adobe Digital Academy: Empowering High Potential Talent through an Apprenticeship Based Solution

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In this 40-minute episode, host Rick Maher is joined by Liz Lowe, Innovation Lead, Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility at Adobe, as they discuss the Adobe Digital Academy, which offers career switchers the education and experience they need to launch successful careers in user experience design, data science and web development. Liz shares how she was able to gain internal support for the academy and reveals data about outcomes. Discover Adobe’s “Playbook” and why Adobe is offering it as an open-source tool for others to leverage.

Episode Guest List:

Liz LoweLiz Lowe is the innovation lead for Adobe’s sustainability and social impact team and manages the Adobe Digital Academy. The Adobe Digital Academy is an alternative and accelerated pathway into tech careers. From supporting microfinance banks in the U.S. Peace Corps, to building an alternative pathway to tech careers for nontraditional candidates, Liz’s work focuses on expanding access to opportunity. Liz was awarded AACSB’s 2018 Influential leaders and GreenBiz 30 under 30, and she holds a B.A in Economics/International Areas from UCLA and an M.B.A. from UC Berkeley Haas School of Business.

Connect with Ms. Lowe on Linkedin.

Full Transcript of this episode:

Narrator:             Welcome to Talent Talks, where each month, human resources veteran Rick Maher welcomes America's thought leaders to discuss ways to reinvent America's talent development and education systems. Tune in and discover how we can drive global competitiveness for future generations. Talent Talks is presented by Maher & Maher and IMPAQ international, who together are delivering research and evidence-based solutions to workforce challenges. And now your host, Rick Maher.

Rick Maher:        Well, thanks for joining us today on Talent Talks, as we again explore the world of talent development with our nation's most prominent thought leaders on workforce and educational issues. Today's guests comes, not from government, but from the private sector. I always think it's valuable to hear perspective from those we hope to serve. So today's session is a real treat for me personally. In recent sessions, as you know, we've been exploring the challenges we face in preparing a workforce of the future and the impact of new technologies on the skill needs of employers. And therefore on the preparations we and workforce in the educational systems need to make. We're going to need to rethink our educational and training solutions and bring them to scale to meet the re-skilling needs attendant to the future of work. And government, we're finding, is not going to be able to do this alone. The private sector will need to step up too, and happily, we're learning that they are.

Rick Maher:        Today, we'll spotlight the incredible work being done by a private sector player we all know and who operates on a global scale. Adobe is doing some amazing work, particularly with apprenticeship-based solutions, and they have graciously agreed to talk to us today and share what they've learned. So we're thrilled to welcome Liz Lowe, Adobe's innovation lead for sustainability and corporate responsibility, who's going to give us some great perspective on the employer's role and the impact they can make on our ability to continue to have among the world's best prepared workforce in the future. Liz, we're so happy to have you join us on Talent Talks. Welcome.

Liz Lowe:             Thanks for having me, Rick.

Rick Maher:        It's our pleasure. I'm guessing, Liz, that virtually everybody listening has heard of Adobe. But I think it's probably appropriate, if you could start by giving us a short background on the company and your role... I was joking with you beforehand, everybody at one point in their life should be get to be called the innovation lead. So tell us about Adobe and about your role in innovation at Adobe.

Liz Lowe:             Of course. So we're probably most known for products like Photoshop and Acrobat. But Adobe gives everyone, from emerging artists to global brands, everything they need to design and deliver exceptional digital experiences. We have a variety of products across three clouds that enable people to create, connect and improve their customer experience. At the highest level, Adobe believes that creativity is the catalyst for positive change. And we're driven to inspire creativity in people who want to make a meaningful impact in the world. Which connects well with my role as innovation lead, I'm on Adobe's brand purpose or social impact team, which focuses on corporate responsibility programs. Including sustainability, education initiatives, youth creativity, employee volunteering, philanthropy and more. As innovation lead, I manage our Adobe Digital Academy apprenticeship program, which falls in this department.

Rick Maher:        And first off, that's very cool. What a great job, and important as we talk about things like the future of work and I'm very interested in Adobe's perspective on corporate responsibility as it relates to this topic. And I dug into what you're doing there a little bit in preparation for today, Liz. And as I say, encouraged to see a private employer making such a commitment to meeting the skills challenge. I know you've created this thing you call Adobe Digital Academy as part of what you're doing. What exactly is the Digital Academy? Can you explain it for our listeners?

Liz Lowe:             Of course. It's an alternative and accelerated pathway into tech and design careers, but specifically for nontraditional or career switcher candidates. So the program offers candidates, from a wide range of backgrounds, the education and experience that they would need in order to break into the tech industry. So through this program, Adobe sponsors scholarships and living stipends for candidates to attend a three-month web development data science or user experience bootcamp. And that's through our education partner, which is a bootcamp called General Assembly, which is an international boot camp. And then after students go through this education portion, qualified students have the opportunity to interview for an apprenticeship at Adobe. And after that apprenticeship, many go on to full-time entry level positions. The goal is to give candidates the education, experience, tools and opportunity they need to launch successful technical careers. And really a key piece for us is supporting them in succeeding long-term, whether at Adobe or another company.

Rick Maher:        Yeah, yeah.

Liz Lowe:             To understand a little more of the details, when we're talking about these candidates and the sourcing, we've built these nonprofit networks in each of the locations that we have the Adobe Digital Academy. And we partner with nonprofits such as Europe, Digital NEST, Hack the Hood, Upwardly Global and other nonprofits, in order to identify the high potential candidates who are fit for the Digital Academy program and who are looking to make a switch to the tech industry.

Rick Maher:        Well there's obviously a lot of folks can benefit from hearing this experience you've had an Adobe. Can you take a minute and share a little bit about what your results have been thus far? What are some of the highlights since the inception of this apprenticeship based program at Adobe?

Liz Lowe:             The program is still in an early phase, but we've been really encouraged by the success that we've had so far. So our goal is really to establish this program as a new on ramp to the tech industry, that becomes widely accepted as a successful entry point for high performing nontraditional talent. Since we launched in 2016, our stats include 98 scholarships with 86% of candidates going on to full-time roles in tech, whether at Adobe or another company.

Liz Lowe:             I've been excited to see, we've had candidates go onto LinkedIn, Google, Facebook, eBay and Workday as well as many startups. We've had 71 apprenticeships at Adobe and 29 of those have become full time hires with a 96% retention rate. With the only individual that ever left went to go start his own artificial intelligence startup. So we were very excited for him.

Rick Maher:        Wow. Yeah, that's awesome. Yeah.

Liz Lowe:             And roughly 50% of our apprentices have been promoted within their first year. And then we were recently named, in 2019 to fast company's world-changing ideas list and we've been highlighted in Working Mother magazine. So we've been really excited by these early statistics and success points and also very excited to see how this program continues to grow.

Rick Maher:        As you should be. Those are some awesome statistics. Thanks for that, Liz. There is a component of a social responsibility here, in that you're giving something back. As you say, some of these folks may succeed in places other than Adobe, but then there's also the self interest, right? Of developing the talent pipeline you guys need, right? So I like the combination here, you're not doing this strictly from the goodness of your heart, although there's that social responsibility component as well. I'm sorry to interrupt you, but I wanted to make that point for our listeners, because I think it's important.

Liz Lowe:             No, I think that's really key, when I become aware of a lot of the other programs that are out there in terms of apprenticeships, I think that's one of our unique differentiators in terms of having both the social impact element and thinking about bringing in candidates through nonprofits. But also this key element of meeting our business needs and demand.

Rick Maher:        Absolutely. And you mentioned locations. Can you quickly, can you cite a few of the locations you're operating these boot camps in?

Liz Lowe:             Yeah. So we launched the program in the Bay area in now four of our different offices throughout the Bay area. And then we've been expanding and piloting throughout the last couple of years at different sites. So we've piloted in Utah, in Texas. We're piloting this year in New York and we're exploring small pilots with a refugee nonprofit internationally as well.

Rick Maher:        It's amazing. And again, I think that some of our folks in the workforce system probably are going to be very interested in hearing about this and learning more about this Digital Academy. And this is an awesome idea. I'm curious about your adoption, I guess, for apprenticeship, as the training model that you're focused on here, Liz. I mean there's a million different ways Adobe could be handling up-skilling and training, I guess. Why apprenticeship? What caused you to focus on this as being a solution or your solution for talent development? And then I have a follow-up question to that, but quickly, why apprenticeship? What drew you to this particular model for your skill development?

Liz Lowe:             I think we're all really aware of how rapidly digital transformation is changing our workforce and how much we need to keep up with that. And it's creating demand for new skills and roles that we can't even predict.

Rick Maher:        Yeah.

Liz Lowe:             As well as creating challenges for companies in terms of re-skilling and up-skilling new and existing employees. So our social impact team, a couple of years ago, was really looking at ways to meet this intersection of our social impact skills and opportunities to build something new. Along with what these growing business needs were. So we saw, we identified three things. One, the growing demand for tech workers, which I think every company can relate with. And then this increasing focus on diversity, inclusion and equity in tech, especially how it leads to more creative and innovative problem solving. Which I think gets back to that rapid digital transformation.

Rick Maher:        Yep.

Liz Lowe:             And then the other key, third component, that we identified was the gap in the tech pipeline in terms of our philanthropy has these incredible investments in youth coding initiatives. But we didn't have anything for the career switcher to make that transition into the tech industry. So those components led us to the apprenticeship model. And both myself and my manager, Michelle Crozier, who's the director of the social impact team at Adobe, we had built apprenticeship programs previously.

Rick Maher:        Okay.

Liz Lowe:             So that that led us to see this as a potential solution. And we happened to have a conversation with General Assembly, in 2015, a very casual brainstorm. But from there we saw this potential to re-skill and up-skill candidates from this social impact philanthropy side, but then also connect to those individuals with experience. To either make a career at Adobe or at another tech company. So the apprenticeship really we saw as this key missing element to a lot of our social impact investments. In terms of setting an individual up for success and for trying out a new model of meeting our business needs at the same time.

Rick Maher:        Yeah, that makes perfect sense. I mean it's... So you've had some experience with apprenticeship, you know it's a proven model in it. And hearing you now, it occurs to me too that, in this world where skill needs are changing so quickly that, as you put it, they're unpredictable. Even for folks like you, that run tech companies. Apprenticeship offers the opportunity with work based learning component of it that literally as skills are changing, people are experiencing that. Does that make any sense? It had never really occurred to me prior to this conversation with you, but that's probably another advantage of apprenticeship that classroom based stuff can't deliver. Right? Because it isn't present in real time, if you will. You know?

Liz Lowe:             Rick. Yeah, Rick. That's exactly it. And it's something that I've been amazed to see over the past couple of years of building and growing this program. But is how rapidly our needs have changed even year to year. So we provide candidates with this very basic, entry level software engineering or data science or design background and that comes from General Assembly. But then they come to Adobe and each of them end up learning a different language or a different product.

Rick Maher:        Exactly, yeah.

Liz Lowe:             Or a different set of skills, that's specific to that team. And there is no way we could have anticipated what the team would need or how they're shifting their work based on customer needs. So it's really this real time investment in the future of our workforce.

Rick Maher:        Yeah, that again, never occurred to me and it should have. But that's a great point and important. Thanks for sharing that. There's so much about your experience that people are going to want to learn from. Liz, I'm probably going to run out of time before we get through a lot of it. But I think at the front end of it, I'm curious, so you guys had this conversation, you mentioned your boss who leads the innovation team. How did you build internal support for the initiative? Can you speak to that for a minute or two? Once you've got this brainstorm and you guys figured out this was the... You saw the light. How did you bring others to the table and get their support?

Liz Lowe:             Right. So at the time I was fresh out of completing my MBA over at UC Berkeley Haas School of Business. And I had studied and focused on design thinking and the rapid prototyping model and really thinking as well about the lean startup model. So when I was tasked with taking on building this program, I approached it from that design thinking mindset. And I went to all of our quote unquote "customers", which would be our hiring managers. And I spent time with them interviewing them about their needs in terms of talent, their pain points, what they would be most interested and engaged in. And those conversations really allowed us to build a network of champions for this program.

Rick Maher:        Absolutely right. Bingo.

Liz Lowe:             And then the way we approached it was again, that pilot fails often start small.

Rick Maher:        Yep.

Liz Lowe:             So we started with five scholarships in 2016 and those were only in web development. And we placed four of those individuals in apprenticeships on hiring managers teams, who raised their hands and had been part of that interview process and had been invested in the program from the start. So they completely understood the mission of what we were doing. And all four of those were hired full time into entry level software engineering roles. So that acted as our proof points for future conversations, that we had these four hiring managers who were getting to see the benefits of bringing on a nontraditional candidate and the innovative solutions they can come up with. And that increased engagement from team members in having a program like this on their team, which I think is really important to highlight. But that early model in those early years, we probably had about five cohorts per year in order to quickly tweak what it was that we were doing and continuing to put in support mechanisms in place to ensure the overall success and potential to scale the program.

Rick Maher:        So I think you answered my next question, but let me take a second and peel the onion back a little bit on what gave us. Because it was a mouthful, as it was really, really valuable. And for the benefit of the listener here, may not be as familiar with design thinking and some of the principles behind it. Maher has done a lot of this work and this is an area of personal passion for me. What I heard you say there was, the concept of design thinking basically is, first off, participatory management, get other people involved. We've called it deputizing people. And by going out, taking your vision and interviewing managers and asking their opinion, you began to share power and invite them in as stockholders, not stakeholders in your vision.

Rick Maher:        And that, it really builds, as you call it, champions, and the design thinking element of... I call it fail fast, right Liz?

Liz Lowe:             Right.

Rick Maher:        Get an idea, prototype it and failures and failure. It's a learning experience and an enables you to move quickly and to allow folks to contribute to success. I love it. I think those are all really, really, really important parts. And I'd invite the listeners here to grasp on to that. If you're thinking about moving forward with a concept like this, those elements that you used in your startup we're not just a way to get moving, but they were way to build engagement and stockholder-ship around Adobe. Does that make sense to you?

Liz Lowe:             I often joke with individuals that I'm running a startup within a large corporation.

Rick Maher:        Right.

Liz Lowe:             Because we want to keep iterating and making sure, are we meeting hiring manager's needs, are we meeting the business needs and are we meeting the candidates needs and can all of them, as you said, really take on a leadership role in creating this program so that everyone feels invested. And we also know that we're creating a solution that meets everyone's needs. And I think the only other component that I would really highlight for your listeners is around growth mindset. Which has been a key pillar of our program and to me connects very well with that rapid failure. And the idea of growth mindset comes from Dr. Carol Dweck out of Stanford.

Liz Lowe:             And the idea that you can continue to learn from your failures and gather feedback and there's never a fixed mindset, but you're always growing. So it's something that I teach the candidates that come through the program, from day one of their scholarship. It's something that I teach hiring managers from day one of their involvement in the program and I continually build this program from that viewpoint of we need to keep gathering feedback in order to continue to iterate on the best model that we can have of the Adobe Digital Academy.

Rick Maher:        Well, you're preaching to the choir with me on this because you have quite rightly connected this concept of growth mindset. And by the way, folks, for those who are interested, go to YouTube and search Carol Dweck TED talk on this, it's an eye opener. And it does, you're right, it relates very well to design thinking and that fail fast idea and really being open to an experience of something different, right? If we want to change people sometimes cling to the past, because it's safe, it's comfortable, they know that works. But in a day, in a time when things are moving so quickly and skill needs are changing so dramatically, we're going to need to get out of that comfort zone in order to meet this challenge, right? So I love it, Liz. It sounds awesome and I can't tell you how much I appreciate your willingness to share these experience and lessons learned with the folks here.

Rick Maher:        I told you, I think in one of our earlier conversations that... I preach this a lot, about trying to move people during times of change and it's... I always say the same thing, right? There's always 20% of people that hear the idea and they run with it and the best thing we as managers can do is get out of their way. And there might be 10 or 20% of people who are going to cling to things the way they are, no matter what we do or say. And they're probably never going to change. But I always say that the key to success is moving the middle, right? And the middle needs a mentor, they need mentorship, they need a vision, they need a roadmap, they need... The people may be willing but really quite don't know how to start.

Rick Maher:        So I always talk to folks about being able to provide those folks a roadmap, a step-by-step process, if you will. And in unearthing what you've done at Adobe, I'm not surprised, I guess to learn that you built a roadmap, right? You have something you're calling Adobe's playbook, Liz. Talk to us about the playbook, will you? What is it? And the other thing about it, it's again... And I guess I shouldn't have been surprised. You've done it in an open source way. So talk to us about that. What is it? Why open source? Give us some insight into Adobe's playbook, if you would?

Liz Lowe:             Of course. So I was having many inspiring conversations with other companies, that were exploring similar models. And I thought we really need to put this together in a way that other companies can continue to, not only learn and iterate and build their own programs, but also potentially continue to hire Adobe Digital Academy graduates onto their own teams. So with that in mind, we outlined in this playbook, as you mentioned, really the roadmap and key steps for building a program for nontraditional candidates to get into tech. So the number one, first step is determining talent needs. So it goes back to, as I mentioned, those early conversations that we're still having, pretty much every day, to figure out what it is that our hiring managers need on their teams, in terms of skills, to be successful. And it seems really obvious, but it's always changing and it can be really difficult to articulate what those needs are.

Liz Lowe:             So we end up asking questions that are similar to where the business hiring needs might be in the next six to 12 months? What basic abilities and types of training could enable an individual to contribute to existing work projects? And having hiring managers articulate that again, keeps them invested in this program. Our number two step, that's outlined in the playbook and there's more information there, is identifying program partners. So I'm on Adobe's corporate responsibility team. There is no way that I could do this on my own. So we have decided to work with an education partner to train candidates in basic entry level skills. So that, for us, is General Assembly and we also work with the local nonprofits to source candidates that are going to bring really innovative problem solving because of their nontraditional backgrounds. And then we have a number of internal partners, which I've mentioned already, including the hiring managers, our HR team, we leverage all of their existing structures in order to make this possible.

Liz Lowe:             So their employee resource center, as well as their university talent internship, is how we build our apprenticeship. So we're using all existing structures, so we're not inventing anything. And then step three is really focusing on training and educating candidates. And I really wanted to highlight, for your audience stuff, the five things that we've identified over the years to screen in our candidates. Which is number one, is someone able... Something as simple as are they interested in sitting at a computer for eight hours a day? Or are they ready to make this career switch? Number two, do they display a growth mindset? So how have they integrated feedback in the past and how do they think about their own failures? I think this is coachable, but the program is so short that we don't have the time to train them on growth mindset as well. Number three is really that grit piece of how have they overcome challenges in the past. And then we've really found clear communication goes such a long way as well as just an overall...

Liz Lowe:             The fifth element that we look for is an overall potential for success and not something that we see as was the individual promoted in their previous role? Even if it was as a security guard or we've had individuals that were teachers or in the IT profession. So really looking for that past success. And then the final two steps, that are outlined in the playbook, is managing the apprentices, which I would really highlight as you mentioned this earlier, but we focus a lot on mentorship and ensuring we have a wide range of a mentor network for each of our candidates to set them up for success. And then we also outlined some top hiring manager tips in terms of those early successes that an apprentice can have, to make them feel more comfortable and confident in their role. And how to really ask the right questions, when they're in their apprenticeship.

Liz Lowe:             And then the final component, which I often find is the most difficult element, is how do we then transition the individual to a full time role. And it loops back to our number one of determining talent needs. Where if you've determined the right skills, then it should be a relatively obvious transition to a full time role for that individual. But we found it's really helpful to continue to have those partnerships with our hiring managers as well as really thinking about career coaching. And this is an area that I love talking about, but we've thought a lot about the elements of success.

Liz Lowe:             I'm a big fan of California's newest surgeon general or only surgeon general, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, who talks a lot about these key components of mental health support, that can be as simple as making sure someone's getting enough sleep and exercise. But I think these components really also support someone's success in a full time role. So we've found all of these components to be key. And again, they're all outlined in the playbook as well as we're about to have a webinar on December 10th with our two partners, the diversity and inclusion consulting firm Paradigm and our education partner General Assembly, as well as myself. Again, going a little deeper on these elements that I've outlined today.

Rick Maher:        I am struck, positively struck, but struck for sure on the fact that you guys are being so open about this, Liz. I mean all of this is open source. You've given us, what for a lot of people might be considered, valuable inside information. I love the way you've defined these five elements that you look for in a person. By the way, I think they're spot on. I mean we see so many people saying," Oh, we're looking for the same things, a good team player, good communication skills." They defined them so softly by getting into really looking at somebody's growth mindset. And again, I would commend people to learn more about that because it will give you a real insight as to why Adobe might be looking at identifying people with a growth mindset to start. This is really good stuff and it's powerful stuff. What is your motivation in making all of this so public and doing it in an open source way, Liz? Some might say this could be a competitive advantage for you.

Liz Lowe:             Adobe is deeply committed to driving diversity across our industry and we see these topics as being important, for not only Adobe but all companies. And we're also... Innovation is a key component. Innovation and creativity is a key component of Adobe. So we see, if the whole industry is able to move forward, that that also pushes Adobe's business forward. And we have found that the other goal that is the driving element for us, is we ultimately want all of these individuals that go through the program to be successful in a full-time role. And that's not necessarily going to be at Adobe.

Liz Lowe:             So the more we can get other companies on board for the apprenticeship model, the more we can really move the needle on thinking about both diversity and inclusion across all industries. As well as opportunities for nontraditional candidates to get into tech. So something that I haven't highlighted yet, about the program, is that many of the candidates that go into this program are earning under 30,000 a year. But once they enter these entry level positions, are earning upwards of a hundred K a year.

Rick Maher:        Unbelievable, unbelievable.

Liz Lowe:             And we see this economic opportunity as that key driving motivation for us, along with diversity and inclusion in tech and other industries. And the creativity and innovation that comes out of that.

Rick Maher:        Yeah. And how long does this program last, if I get into it? The boot camp is three months and then the apprenticeship is how long?

Liz Lowe:             Another three months. But from application date until the potential for full time hire, it's a year. So now we run the program once a year in order to streamline resources and the application process. So applications open in the fall, candidates go through the training in the early part of the year into spring. And then they come to Adobe for the apprenticeship in the summer, with the potential to be hired full-time in the fall of that following year. So it's a year from start to finish.

Rick Maher:        Incredible. Instead of a two years of a community college degree or four years of a bachelor's degree with all those associated expenses. Look at the potential involved here because of the model you're using in the industry you're bringing people into it. And by the way, for those of you who care to notice the answer to my question is, why does Adobe do this in an open source way and share this knowledge? I think what your answer says, Liz, is that Adobe as an organization has a growth mindset. That's the bottom line and-

Liz Lowe:             Exactly.

Rick Maher:        ... that's pretty wild. That's pretty amazing. Look, I could talk to you for probably too long, right? And we are limited by time, so I'm going to wrap up here soon. But I do have one more question, at least, before we get to closing. And I want my listeners to standby here, because I'm going to ask Liz to give us information about how you can connect to all of these awesome open source tools they offer. But talk to us a little bit, Liz, about what you think the opportunity is for scaling what you're doing inside the tech industry in the U.S. Obviously, you've already mentioned you're scaling it in Adobe. Talk to me about the broader application in the tech industry. You see, obviously I guess, a pretty big opportunity for this to catch on and move the scale industry wide, I suspect.

Liz Lowe:             Yes, and I was starting to allude to this a little bit earlier. But I think it really ties back to our commitment around driving diversity across our industry. So Adobe actively supports our customers, suppliers, partners and peers as they work to improve their own workplaces, policies and practices. So the more we're able to encourage those other organizations and companies to utilize the playbook in order to get their own programs off the ground, then we can continue to support them with ongoing learnings. And we can even take the iterations and changes that they're making to keep improving our program as well.

Liz Lowe:             But in a future, that I hope is not too far off, I could really see this network. As well as of both nontraditional candidates being able to find open entry level roles that start with an apprenticeship, so they can keep their learning going. But then also companies being able to continue to share these key learnings of how do you best up-skill and re-skill talent? Because I think it really ends up benefiting the whole ecosystem. And as I mentioned, we're so connected to our customers and suppliers and partners, that it's really important to us to make sure that that whole ecosystem is having access to these resources.

Rick Maher:        Well as you and your team and your colleagues at Adobe are not just making an impact here for Adobe, but you're modeling the behavior. That I personally think it's going to take for the United States, in fact, for the world to survive and thrive through this future of work, this fourth industrial revolution we're all facing. And we done so much work on that here recently in Talent Talks and one of the things I'm finding is some experts are calling for 15 to 30% of the entire U.S. workforce to be retrained. And let's face it, the public system doesn't have those kinds of resources. It's going to have to be a public system plus the private sector stepping up to find new innovative solutions. And boy, you guys are certainly showing us a way forward. And I can't tell you how appreciative we at IMPAQ and Maher are for your contribution and your partnership here today.

Rick Maher:        This is really enlightening and I think important for our listeners to learn more about. So again, I say I could talk to you for another half an hour, but I'm not going to do that to you or to our listeners. I'm going to let them find ways to follow you and connect offline from Talent Talks here. So if somebody wants to get ahold of your playbook, Liz, or connect with you or follow your progress, how would you suggest people link to what Adobe's doing? How should they stay connected to you?

Liz Lowe:             So listeners can learn more about the program. I didn't even get into a lot of our stats around our retention rates and promotion rates, which I think are other proof points for individual starting the program. But individuals can download the playbook and get to know more of our candidates as well at And another great resource is, where individuals can search for the Adobe Digital Academy. I also... In this line of promoting adoption of this program and learning from others, I would love to hear from any of your listeners. So again, they can email me directly at

Rick Maher:        That's awesome and I really appreciate that and I again appreciate your partnership here. We're going to make sure that on the Talent Talks page, when this is released, guys, we'll have those addresses typed out for you to follow. So everybody didn't have to scramble for their pen right now, if you didn't get it. We'll have it on the website. And Liz, you're awesome. The work your team is doing is awesome. You're paving the way forward and not only you're doing that, but your willingness to share it with us and let others benefit from your early victories is really, really admirable. And again, on behalf of Maher and IMPAQ, thank you so much for taking the time to be with us today. We appreciate it.

Liz Lowe:             It's been a pleasure. Thanks so much.

Rick Maher:        Oh it's our pleasure, believe me. So folks, until next time at Talent Talks, this is Rick Mayer thanking you for listening. And reminding you that at Talent Talks, we hope to explore, inform, and inspire you a bit. Because we're all actors in a global war for talent, one where talent is seen as the new global currency, and you are America's talent investment bankers. So we hope I've inspired you to take a risk, make a difference. As Liz has taught us today, fail, try, fail, but for God's sakes, fail fast and try again. Thanks again for listening. Have a great day. We will see you next month on Talent Talks.

Narrator:             Thank you for listening to Talent Talks, presented by Maher & Maher and IMPAQ International. For more information on what is being done to position America's workers, employers, and communities for future prosperity, sign up for our newsletter at That's M A H E R N E

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