Best practices for nested teams

Tags: Skills

Leveraging the flexibility of nested teams allows you to configure your Skills teams in the way that will maximize your results and help you meet your strategic goals. Setting up and maintaining your team structure the right way will help set your teams up for success.

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How to build nested teams

There are three methods to build and manage your teams in the Skills platform. Which one you choose will depend on the size, complexity, and cadence of changes to your organization.

Method 1: API integration

API integration is typically the most efficient way to manage large teams. It saves you time by automating changes to your team structure and is beneficial if you plan to make frequent changes to your teams.

To use API integration, you will need to either:

  • Have access to in-house developer resources to perform self-serve API integration
  • Contract with Pluralsight Professional Services to set up the integration

We provide various team mutations (write operations) such as adding a team (opens in new tab), adding a team manager (opens in new tab), etc. Check out all of our mutations under API documentation in our Developer portal (opens in new tab). Or, see how Pluralsight Professional Services (opens in new tab) can set up your integration for you.

Method 2: CSV upload

CSV upload is a good option to manage teams at scale for organizations without access to developer resources.

Each time you want to make a change, you’ll need to create a new CSV file. Many organizations using the CSV will batch changes into a scheduled upload either once a month or once every two weeks.

See Managing teams via CSV for instructions.

Method 3: Skills platform interface

The Skills platform is a great way to make quick changes to your teams. Thanks to its drag-and-drop user interface, it’s fast and easy to move one team or user around the team structure. This is great for organizations without the developer resources to use the API, who need to make frequent changes.

See Managing teams for instructions.

Combining methods

Many organizations use a combination of the CSV upload and the Skills platform interface. You can use the CSV for your initial team upload, and then use the interface to make adjustments and keep it up to date.

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How to integrate nested teams with SSO

Some admins of team plans choose to have their users sign in to Pluralsight via single sign-on (SSO). This allows users to sign in to Pluralsight from their company's app catalog or from a specific company URL, rather than logging in from

If you wish to have users auto-dropped into additional teams, Professional Services will need to add these additional teams to your SSO configuration.

See how the Pluralsight Professional Services (opens in new tab) can set up your integration for you.

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How to structure nested teams

Each organization is unique, with different team structures, learning goals, and data needs. Pluralsight offers you the flexibility to set up your Skills teams to match your organization’s structure and deliver the results you need.

Below are just a handful of possible models to consider.

  • By team leader. Match internal leadership hierarchy by organizing teams into functional teams where the team manager can view analytics and assign dedicated learning via priorities and channels.
  • By role. Set up teams to invite users that fit into the roles you’re tracking. This helps especially with L&D as they track onboarding efforts or readiness for new roles in the organization. This also allows for custom Role IQs, channels, and priorities to be assigned automatically when a user is added to a team.
  • By location. Set up dispersed teams to allow filtering by office location, country, time zone, or other geolocation considerations. This can be useful for budget and reporting purposes.
  • Combination. Since learners can belong to multiple teams, you can organize one set of teams by team leader, and another overlapping set of teams by role, location, or strategic initiative, for example. Each set of teams can have customized priorities, learning objectives, and analytics reporting.

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Tips for success

  • Remember that data drives behavior. As you organize people into teams, think about who needs access to the data grouping to drive the behaviors you need to achieve your goals.
  • Don’t make teams too small. To get averages of data around Skill IQ, you need five or more scores. If the team is too small, you may not achieve this. Even though Skills allows for infinite nesting of teams, going too granular may make it harder for you to monitor your teams’ progress.
  • Be intentional with your focus. Rather than getting caught up in all the possible ways that people can be aligned in your organization, focus on aligning your teams to who needs to see the learning of whom.
  • Use multiple team leaders. Don’t forget you can provide access to multiple leaders and stakeholders for a team’s analytics. See Managing team managers and Filtering analytics with nested teams.
  • Keep your internal systems in mind. Consider using a team structure that mirrors your internal systems. This will allow you an easier path to automation if you elect to leverage APIs to maintain your org structure, now or in the future.
  • Use functional team names. Avoid using people’s names in your team names. Oftentimes, people change roles more frequently than you will change your team alignment. This will help avoid unnecessary work of renaming teams.

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If you need help, please contact Pluralsight Support.