RJ Podeschi
Millikin University, Decatur, Illinois


The notion of the corporate university was popularized in the 1980s to address the needs
of the ever changing skill demands of the workforce. The curricula for the corporate university
intentionally linked learning goals to strategic business objectives. While some companies opted
to develop their Corporate Universities internally, others relied on partnerships with institutions
of higher education to deliver the needed expertise. Partnering with colleges and universities
provided additional sources of revenue in an industry that continues to face enrollment and
budget pressures. Previous research indicates that the corporate university framework has shown
to be effective in upgrading the skills and supporting the strategic objectives for a firm.
Furthermore, businesses rely heavily on applications like Microsoft Excel to perform calculations,
sort, filter, and modify data. The combination of corporate university frameworks and
spreadsheets have been used to build the skills of a changing workforce in order to deliver better
data analysis for a Fortune 50 company. This study reports on the development of Excel training
courses for a global company and its effectiveness in supporting the strategic business objectives
of the firm. Ultimately, the training has allowed the business to save time and money through
automating manual processes.

Keywords: Workforce, skill demand, corporate university, strategic business, Excel training