California State University Boosts Training Curriculum With Playback Media

September 5, 2001

Playback Media™, a provider of a suite of streaming video corporate training programs focusing on business-critical issues, recently announced an agreement with the California State University (CSU) system to offer the Playback Media eLearning solution to its campuses. In addition to conventional business-competency training, the Playback eLearning service includes courses encompassing a range of employment issues, discrimination, and other workplace lifestyle issues.

The Playback Media eLearning solution will be offered to each of the 23 California State University campuses as well as to the CSU Chancellor’s Office. Using Playback Media’s built-in learning management system along with the variety of soft-skill business courses, CSU staff will now have a tool to monitor professional development goals. The Playback solution offers certificates — groups of courses designated by managers to help employees achieve development goals. In some cases, completion of these certificates will be tied to performance evaluations. Because Playback Media is a Web-based solution, employees can access courses anywhere and anytime there is an Internet connection.

Lynne Hellmer, CSU senior director of systemwide professional development, spearheaded the training enrichment project to address the training needs of the geographically dispersed 41,000 CSU faculty and staff.

“The CSU was seeking an eLearning solution that would have both a short and long-term effect — first by quickly impacting the high-profile pain points associated with some of the workplace compliance topics, and secondly by enhancing the professional skills of our staff,” said Hellmer. “Playback Media’s high quality content addressed the scope of our initial needs, and its customization offering has enabled CSU to consider extending the function of the product to address CSU-specific issues.”

The California State University envisions eventually supplementing the existing library of Playback’s eLearning with a range of CSU-specific 30-minute lessons complete with a mechanism for monitoring successful employee completion of the learning goals.

During the selection process, Hellmer considered several criteria including breadth of the course library, the quality of content, length of courses, ease of use, but the most important factor in the decision was the delivery of the information.

“The CSU wanted video and lots of action but it had to run over the Internet,” said Hellmer. “The static delivery of the flat, HTML slide show style typical of many eLearning solutions would not engage our workforce. The CSU is pleased with the decision to work with Playback Media. The content, the technology and the customer service have exceeded our expectations and fulfilled our criteria.”

“Working with one of the largest state university systems in the country is a great opportunity for Playback Media to showcase how effective eLearning can be within the education field as well as for other geographically dispersed enterprises,” said Nancy Campbell, President and CEO of Playback Media. “We look forward to the feedback and the learning that will occur working closely with the CSU team to implement this eLearning solution state-wide.”

Playback Media has developed a full suite of eLearning administration, management and measurement tools to deliver over 150 video training programs concentrating on effective management skills, professional development and compliance-based training. By leveraging a unique streaming video technology and differentiated course structure and content, Playback Media customers are experiencing significantly higher course completion rates than other eLearning offerings. Courses offered include: Managing Virtual Teams, High-Performance Communication, Preventing Sexual Harassment, and Ethical Decision Making.

About Playback Media

Playback Media™ is a next generation eLearning Service Provider that delivers business-critical and required training via online video in a more engaging, concise, and immersive manner. Playback Media’s training solutions result in a more productive workforce, reduced costs, and an improved bottom line for its corporate customers. Based in Redwood City with offices in New York, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles and Minneapolis, the company offers a complete catalog of business critical programming such as leadership, professional development, management, and compliance. Since its funding in October, 1999, Playback Media has developed more than 150 eLearning programs, established an impressive technology infrastructure, built a world-class management team, and raised more than $25 million in financing from Crystal Internet Venture Funds, Halpern, Denny & Company, El Dorado Ventures, Thomvest Holdings and APV Technology Partners. Visit Playback Media on the Web at or call 1-888-889-2920.

About the California State University

The California State University is the largest four-year university system in the country. More than 21,000 faculty and 20,000 staff teach and support 370,000 students on 23 campuses and six off-campus centers throughout the state. Nearly two million people have graduated from CSU campuses. Altogether, about half the bachelor’s degrees and a third of the master’s degrees awarded in California are from the CSU. For more information on the CSU see