Tech vendors are the past. Tech partners are the future.
Being in the tech world means you're often framed as a vendor.
When talking to potential education customers or clients, this almost always means they have some part of their guard up. The default position (probably due to past experience!), is what are you trying to sell me now?
We think the EdTech market has moved beyond that traditional model.
The best tech firms today see themselves as being in the business of value creation. Rather than selling a product, it’s about working on a relationship and a partnership with a potential or actual customer over the long-term.
It's about solving problems that matter. That make a difference to educators and their students.
We live by that at ReadyTech.
Of course we want customers to be wowed by our product and our service as well as their experience and results they have. But we also want to be working with them to improve what they do and grow into the future.
Here’s a few things that we care about as a partner.
1. We’re anchored by a strong vision
Technology works best when your partner has a vision for the future of technology in your industry.
ReadyTech Education, for example, sees a future where being a ‘student’ is not a life stage but a lifestyle, where people commit to lifelong learning as part of their everyday working life. They will do this using a tech ecosystem that seamlessly connects them to EdTech tools in an open, scalable and engaging learning experience.
This vision is a result of specific insights into the needs of the tertiary education industry through work with our clients and the student journey of the present and future. It means we need to build an open and scalable student platform that empowers all our clients to provide great learning experiences for their students.
Our vision guides us and makes us a partner worth having for education providers.
2. We view everyone as a partner
Partnership isn't something we reserve for just some clients. We see every customer as a partner.
Because the implementation and onboarding process for a technology system like the next generation JR Plus Student Management System can take some time, we are blessed with good quality time with our clients. We develop deep relationships with them and an understanding of their businesses that allows us to deliver value.
This is what allowed us to report year-on-year customer revenue retention of 96% in FY21 (in addition to growth).
We layer that with opportunities for our customer community to be engaged and provide feedback into our product. They are able to contribute and participate in paving the future of their service and our product through our roadmap. We are working directly with customers as partners in designing the future of education together.
3. We are open to customer opportunity
We have a mature approach to integration that recognises customers are likely to benefit from value emerging across the education technology ecosystem in the future. Rather than trying to be all things to all people with one system, we are active in accessing and delivering value to customers through curated integration.
This requires a technology partner to recognise that the problems of tertiary education are wide and many and the solution may not necessarily come from you. It means not being insular and observing technology trends more widely, and supporting integration with strong technical documentation and support to make it seamless.
When you have an ecosystem-friendly partner the speed at which you can innovate is exponential. Your tech partner is essentially running an extensible technology team if they do true partnering. The speed at which a tech partner can add value into a product increases - leading to improved experiences and outcomes for customers.
4. We aren’t about selling a product
We have built our business on selling the value our products offer rather than the product itself, and we are confident in our ability to deliver on that. While ultimately we are a source of technology product, we see ourselves as a partner because we are providing value to our customers on a continual basis that they can see in action.
That includes actively giving back and contributing to tertiary education space we’re in. Whether it’s through sponsorship of the Training Awards or participating in EdTech forums like EduGrowth, we don't see what we do as unidirectional. We give back our value, skills and knowledge freely in the space. We prosper through participation.
From vendor to value
We see a change taking place in the education ecosystem following COVID-19. We have seen evidence of technology providers and customers coming together in more ideas-oriented forums to solve shared problems. We think the tenor of the conversation between technology providers and customers has changed, and changed for the better.
If we can move towards true technology partnership across education, we can become better collective actors in the future of education in Australia. We can ensure Australia not only bounces back from the pandemic, but emerges re-energised for the future world of learning that is on offer. It’s what we do best. Why not do it together?
Interested in learning more about how we partner with tertiary education providers to provide next generation student management technology? Learn more here.