Both project-based and long-term UX contracts have a place in the EdTech space. It’s not an either/or scenario. But each option for engaging an external UX partner comes with a unique set of considerations. The scale and scope of your project will play a significant role in your decision about the best approach. Regardless of which option you choose, there are a few things to keep in mind. At Openfield, we’ve worked with product owners in both contractual capacities and have learned what makes each one successful.
EdTech companies need to be serious about ADA compliance, and fast. The number of lawsuits filed against organizations has grown exponentially over the last few years, and COVID-19 has added a new dimension as users are challenged with adapting to remote conditions. It’s more important than ever to ensure your product won’t put you in the crosshairs in an era of heightened scrutiny. Simply put, making products accessible for ALL users is more than a requirement, it’s the right thing to do. On the business side, the consequences of not doing so include ADA lawsuits, declining sales, and negative brand perception.
The users of your EdTech product share a desire for your product to make them better than they were before they started using it. While that may feel like a daunting task, it is possible for your product to deliver a more useful and meaningful experience for your users — one that makes them the hero of their own learning story. It starts by creating a product that demonstrates an innate understanding of your users. But before we dive into how to drive better learning outcomes, let’s look at the narratives that guide EdTech product use from three key audiences: students, instructors and administrators.
Educators are among a rising group of individuals turning to data to inform their every day decisions. The most successful instructors often turn to data available from EdTech products for insights and recommendations to guide their students’ learning. When it comes to data, though, a natural tendency for product developers is to share everything available. But that can be overwhelming for teachers and in turn render the data useless. Data is no longer reserved for only analysts or “tech-savvy” individuals. And instructors shouldn’t have to struggle to use data that is available to them. Instead, data should help educators understand trends and make decisions about when students are achieving their goals and when instructors should intervene
A comprehensive approach to EdTech product development means more stakeholders are at the table. But when groups who should be working toward the same goal are at odds, it slows down the process and the progress toward your product’s launch. Developers are now joined by teams from content, marketing, customer support and other product groups (just to name a few). This diversity of roles and disciplines now represented on the team leads to a better product in the end. But the growing number of personalities and perspectives increases the potential for conflicting priorities.