- LinkedIn is acquiring Glint, an employee engagement software startup, for an undisclosed amount, LinkedIn said in a statement.
- In addition to improving LinkedIn's capability to help HR clients better understand organizational health and performance and receive insight into talent needs, the company said acquiring Glint would help it incorporate managerial feedback given to employees on Glint "into a personalized LinkedIn Learning experience focused on topics that will help them improve."
- "We are excited about the possibilities that could come from the integration of Glint and what we can deliver together to advance the growth of Glint," LinkedIn vice president of talent solutions Daniel Shapero said in a blog post announcing the news. Though financial details of the deal haven't been disclosed, Glint was valued at around $220 million in its last round of fundraising, according to figures reported by TechCrunch.
LinkedIn's announcement is revelatory of a talent solutions technology space that continues to heat up going into 2019. A growing recognition of the need for serious, revamped employee development programming is driven by low unemployment and a need for highly skilled workers across industries. Big players like LinkedIn are fighting for control of a space that could exceed $240 billion by 2023, according to Docebo.
There's always the question of consolidation, however, much like other areas of HR technology. Analysts have noted a trend of consolidation of learning management systems (LMS) along with a move to "cheaper, cloud-based solutions," as termed by Ambient Insight analyst Sam S. Adkins in a 2016 report. E-learning demand, driven by both the corporate and higher-learning segments, is also likely to trend toward products that focus on flexibility and customization. LinkedIn has made steps reflective of both trends, forming employer partnerships to improve custom content creation, for example, and making the backbone of its LinkedIn Learning product more friendly to cross-platform use.
The Glint acquisition takes the customization aspect a step further, with LinkedIn apparently planning to make direct use of managerial input to improve employee training. It's a sign that larger companies are taking the people analytics segment more seriously in their efforts to diversify product portfolios.
Employers might pay attention to these market dynamics for the trends they signal, if not for the products themselves. HR tech firms are cluing into organizations' struggle for talent on both ends of the recruiting spectrum, with job boards experiencing their own fair share of market competition.