“CollPoll is a digital campus platform the goal is anything and everything that happens physically in the campus needs to be supported by a digital environment as well,” says Hemant Sahal, Founder & CEO, CollPoll in an interview with Chandan Anand, Founding Editor, ArdorComm Media Group at the ‘ArdorComm New Normal – Education Leadership Summit & Awards 2022’ #ELSAGujarat #ELSAAhmedabad
Would you like to highlight some of your case studies or any achievement or milestone pre-pandemic and post pandemic which you have achieved?
Yeah so covid did help in establishing the value of technology to higher education institutions but there are also other factors that were driving technology adoption things like the competition has been rising the complexity, for example new education policy brings some reforms which are well awaited but with those reforms also come the complexity change. So, I think the complexity, compliance and then the covid came so technology became a key enabler and a facilitator in higher education. At CollPoll we were prepared for it and we were been working on the platform and the technology for a while and we have the insights, so we scaled up very aggressively. We almost grew by 10 times on terms of the number of Institutions we are working in the last two years. We work with some of the best institutions as well as we work with institutions in the city, in rural areas tier 3 cities. So, you work with a very eclectic set of Institutions and we’re very happy to see the response from education institutions.
Would you highlight the services which you offer in CollPoll?
So, CollPoll is a digital campus platform the goal is anything and everything that happens physically in the campus needs to be supported by a digital environment as well. So, whether it is an administrative activity which typically we call as ERP or is it a learning activity which you call as Learning Management systems or any workflows in the campus like a student needs a permission from the parent to get out of the campus or a faculty has a problem in the Wi-Fi or the IT. So, we automate thousand plus workflows with the platform and finally we also have a campus engagement platform which helps different stakeholders come together and interact and engage.
There are many questions in your mind for any academicians or an educator when they try to finalize any of the edtech players to enroll in their kitty, what are the few pointers which an institution should think before enrolling the major technology partner?
So, see it totally depends first of all on what is the institution’s vision and aspirations. Technology can only play a role when you are very clear as an institution what are your goals what are your aspirations right so I think institutions need to sit down and first define what their vision and aspirations are that’s number one. Second, they need to be very clear what are their budgets and then take it because most institutions make a mistake of having a lens of cost when they look at technology rather than a lens of return on investment. So, that mindset change of looking at the returns rather than the cost is very important because you might spend 100 rupees and get a return of like 150 but if you invest let’s say a thousand rupee and you’re getting a return of 10,000 then it’s far better to invest thousand and get the return on Ten Thousand. So, that’s a change so we do spend a lot of time helping our partner institutions get more aware of how they can look at technology in the long term. So, you’re not just looking down at your feet you’re actually looking far beyond. If you make wrong technology decisions then within a year or two you realize oh it was wrong to all the investment and time that has gone gets wasted and that’s where I think we help institutions in saying be clear about your vision your aspirations be clear about your budgets and then you take a phase wise decision on the technology that you want to take.
Would you like to share your five years plan?
For us see the 5 years plan is very simple, straight forward, we keep our ears and eyes open and we want to continue to have engagement and interactions with our partner institutions to understand what are the top requirements, how can technology play a better role in improving learning outcomes in improving student success, in improving research output, in bringing an efficiency in administration and whatever are the new opportunities that come our way we want to continue to solve them with technology so that’s the goal.
As you know the event name which we are branding is a New Normal Education Leadership Summit and Awards, what is the word New Normal for you stands for?
So, I think this is a perpetual process that new normal keeps changing so the one thing that we all have to keep in our mind is that education especially higher education is going through extremely fast-paced transformation. So, the New Normal will keep changing, there is no point defining the New Normal what is very important is to keep your ears, eyes open. Stay true to yourself and be very cognizant of what’s happening and be clear that there is never going to be a permanent New Normal and the New Normal will keep changing and you also need to be that agile and flexible to keep evolving with it.
I am proud to share that we successfully celebrated our one years of existence and we celebrated recently our first anniversary, so any message would you like to give for ArdorComm Media Group?
Congratulations Chandan and it’s always tough to you know start up and build an organization and I’ve been looking at ArdorComm and I am very inspired that from where you have started and where have you reached and I’m very confident that you will continue to grow and build a benchmark in the media and event space in the education, healthcare and different verticals that you work. My only advice is like keep going, keep the spirits and there is so much more opportunity to work together.