“Safety for Kids” is an essential thing that is worrying school heads and administrators, shared school leaders during our conference last month based on the on the response they have been getting from parents.
Seeing this growth in child and student tracking, we spoke to Founder of SkoolSmart, Mr. Srinivasa Rao Saripalli to share his journey and how he sees this as an essential part of schools.
1. How would you define your product (SkoolSmart) in minimum number of words?
SkoolSmart is an Automated RFID based smart student tracking solution from home to school to home while the student is travelling by bus and also Smart Automatic Attendance at school campus for all students. We use exceptional new latest technology wherein there is no swiping by the student or passing through any restricted gates at the campus.
The RFID Card doubles up as their ID card and the students just wear the card and the technology does the rest.
Our enhanced solution also covers onboard Smart Video recording and also optional Smart Live View onboard for the school management from their premises and the bus using 3G capabilities of Network.
The solution is designed to cover the school administration including the principal who gets the automatic attendance of all students in various formats of their choice, Video recording on bus and Live View of the bus for the administration, the parents who get timely daily alerts and also covers the transport department who has a single view of the buses on road in the web application and also have all kinds of reports like distance traveled by the bus in each trip, the driver behaviors by monitoring the over speed situations and triggering appropriate reports, they also know the names and number of students travelling in each trip automatically without resorting to any manual attendance or counting.
The solution is really smart and efficient all the way.
2. Let’s talk about the core value proposition deeply; what problem is SkoolSmart solving and for whom?
SkoolSmart is a boon for parents who worry about their safety of their kids in transit where the students need to travel long distances to go to school and there is always an anxiety if the student has reached in time, or is he stuck in traffic at what time he has reached, when did he leave the school or where has he alighted etc. We provide all real time alerts through SMS to parents for the same.
By using our Smart Live facility the administration can have a Live view into the bus from their school premises while the bus is in transit.
We also have a SkoolSmart Mobile App which not only gives the notification alerts but also can track the bus real time. This is for smart parents who are mobile savvy.
This solution addresses all students from Pre-KG till Class 12th and is a smart solution for K-12 schools
Our solution also covers the transport department where they have all reports/web view and driver behavioral reports, Total distance traveled reports, Bus-wise/student-wise reports which is delivered automatically without resorting to manual attendance or counting. This will improve the efficiency of the transport department and will instill positive driving behaviors amongst the drivers as they now only focus on driving and do not need to take calls and attend to other manual jobs.
3. Could you share details on the number of education clients? What has the market response been in India?
The response has been slower than what we expect it to be but we have been successful in working with some good names including:
- Sherwood High, Bangalore
- Smt. R. A. Kalathiya Vidhya Bhavan, Botad, Gujarat
- The Newtown School, Kolkata
- Delhi Public School, RK Puram, New Delhi
- Royal Global School, Guwahati
- DPS International Saket, New Delhi
- DPS International RK Puram Junior, New Delhi
- Delhi Public School, Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh
- Delhi Public School, Vasant Vihar, New Delhi
- Delhi Public School, East of Kailash, New Delhi
- Delhi Public School, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh
There are more than 50 schools additionally where we are at various stages of discussion and they are very excited about our Unique Automatic Technology and Automatic Attendance and Smart Live Video features along with customized reports. We are the manufacturers of the hardware, own the application and give the service to the clients which is what schools are excited about as we own the solution end to end.
4. Walk us through a SkoolSmart implemented school.
A SkoolSmart implemented school gets the following features:
- Smart RFID Cards for Automatic Detection
- No Swiping Involved/No Walk Through Restrictions
- The Parents receive Automatic SMS Alerts upon:
- Bus Approaching for Pick Up and Drop
- Student Boarding and Alighting from Bus
- Student Reached and Left from School Campus
- SkoolSmart Mobile App “Future Efficient” which helps parents to get the Notification in REAL-TIME about the Child
- SkoolSmart Mobile App helps parents to get the Notification and track the Students in REAL-TIME
- Smart RFID Card is common for both the Bus Solution and Campus Solution
- Student who is coming by their own transport also tracked by the Campus Solution
- On-board Smart Video Camera and On-board Smart Video Recording is optional as per School requirement
- Smart Video
- Smart View – Viewing of Recorded Video
- Smart Live View on the Go: 3G Live Streaming
- We customized the Solution and reports as per the requirement of Educational Institution
- We provide access for SkoolSmart Web portal to the Authorized Person of the Educational Institution to View all the REAL-TIME Updates and Reports
- We provide an END to END Technical Support and Solutions which covers maintaining Web Page and data in Centralized Server
- A designated SkoolSmart Manager for each School act as ONE POINT CONTACT for Smooth working of the School
SkoolSmart Mobile App – Download Links
5. What are the expansion plans for SkoolSmart?
We are expanding to Middle East and Africa based on the encouraging inquiries for partnering with us and taking our solution to be used locally there, as we understand that student safety is a key concern there.
6. How do you think SkoolSmart is different from other student tracking and safety players in the market (in India or globally)?
It is the First RFID based automatic solution in contrast to some existing players who provide passive/tapping of cards solutions. In India, most of the players provide bus tracking solutions and have forgotten the students safety and we are the only company who has put the student safety & tracking, automatic campus attendance as the priority while also providing the basic bus tracking solution.
Ours is the only solution which addresses the school administrations, parents and transport departments needs in one solution.
We are different from others also in a one way as we are the manufacturers of the hardware, application is designed in house and we provide the service to the clients. We own the solution end-to-end.
We do not see any like-to-like product competition to us presently. Competitors in the domain either own the application and procure hardware from third party and try to integrate the solution which in many cases failed due to no one single owner of the solution. We have a clear advantage here. We own the solution end-to end.
7. According to you, what are some of the biggest challenges of selling in education?
The biggest challenge is meeting the principal and the management /decision makers of the schools as they are the decision makers who can understand the product and take decisions on what is good for the school. Most often than not the reception asks to mail the details/send presentations to a common ID or ask to meet someone else who is more into day to day job and is least interested in new and innovative products useful to the school and appreciated by parents.
Once after having seen the solution one reputed school Vice-Principal has said that you guys should have met us much earlier as it is a great product for which I had to tell her that it took six months of continuous follow up to reach her as our personnel were being turned away from reception itself.
8. What are your views about the growth of Education Technology industry in general and specific to India? What difference do you see in the EdTech Indian market in comparison to other countries?
The adoption of technology in India is slower than it should be due to some common global reasons as people are here comfortable and are averse to change status quo. While in west and other advanced countries they embrace a good change which makes their functioning efficient quickly.
9. Being an experienced education professional, what would your tip be to the young edtech startups and entrepreneurs in relation to their marketing approach?
One needs to look for the real need in the market and fill the gap rather dishing out me too products which then will only be sold on price rather than innovation and superior product quality. We at SkoolSmart have stuck to this motto and tailored a very useful and unique product with an exceptional technology.