Student Outcomes Is the Only Metric That Matters in EdTech

EdTech companies use lots of metrics to measure the success of their products. Profits, number of products sold, and market share are among the ways that EdTech firms use to determine whether a product has been successful. But none of these metrics are as important as one thing—student outcomes.

In most industries, companies are primarily focused on profits. In EdTech, you have to do business with schools or universities. These institutions don’t operate like traditional businesses. Working with non-profit institutions requires a different mindset than the corporate world.

The goal of education is to teach students, not to make money. That means when designing an EdTech product, the only metric that companies need to look at is student outcomes. Student outcomes are the first thing schools will want to hear about when purchasing an EdTech product. If you can show that your product will deliver the results they want, other factors won’t matter.

EdTech companies that put student outcomes at the center of their product will not only impress schools, they’re more likely to make big sales. Like in any other industry, trends move fast in education. If school districts or universities see neighboring districts or competing institutions doing something that works, they’re going to want it too.

Too many companies get into the EdTech business thinking they can focus on student outcomes while also squeezing every last penny out of customers and cutting costs. These companies would be wiser to focus solely on student outcomes and let the money work itself out. A truly great EdTech product sells itself.

Of course, there’s another reason student outcomes matter so much. EdTech companies, by entering into the world of education, have a responsibility to students. Although the goal of any business is typically to make the biggest profits possible, EdTech companies must operate within a world not driven by profits. By choosing to go into this industry, companies also must accept the responsibility of working to improve outcomes for students.

So yes, while EdTech companies need to be profitable to stay afloat, money cannot be the sole driving factor behind an EdTech firm. Student outcomes should be the only way that we measure the success of an EdTech company, and student outcomes should be the only metric that matters to EdTech entrepreneurs.

How do you think EdTech companies can strive for better student outcomes? Do you think we need more focus on student outcomes in EdTech?

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