Rohan Krishna, CEO and co-founder of Ed Santa Education, on his educational platform, especially amid Covid-19.

NewsX was joined recently by Rohan Krishna, CEO and co-founder of Ed Santa Education, in its special segment NewsX A-List. Talking about his platform, Krishna said, “Think of it as a buddy you can have all the time with you for your learning and skilling requirements. It is essentially a growth platform for enterprises—you meet everyone who enables on-the-job learning and skilling in a bite-sized format. The entire premise on which it works is that learning is not done just through courses. In fact, a lot of effective learning happens when you try to find solutions to day to day problems at work. And this is done in various formats, either through videos, articles, podcasts, webinars, events, conferences, influencers’ content and social content. These contents and this learning stay with you for your lifetime. And Elite just does that, bring everything to you. So, think about it as a growth tool that aids individual empowerment by keeping people motivated, engaged and skilled.”

Krishna shared an interesting reason for starting this platform. He said, “Elite is a product of excellent education. We also have other products like ‘Get me a course’, ‘Get me employed, ‘Get me Guru’, & ‘adsmart’, and Elite has been formulated based on the data and learning from all these products. The best part is that it’s been built during and introduced during Covid, and now, it’s being used during Covid.”

He further added, “There are two sides to the problem. On the first side, we find users like you, me, employees, team members and colleagues. Now, we asked a basic question, which was, tell us what do you want to be five or seven years down the line? What are your aspirations? And 75% people got stumped. The smaller pie which had the answer also fumbled when we asked them ‘how’. In today’s world, everything is available at a click. If you have to go from point A to point B, or from Delhi to Mumbai, you know how to click to book your flight, your hotel, insurance, your cab, everything. But when it comes to your career, you have a missing destination. And even if you know, you don’t know “how”. This was one of the sides of the problem, and one which is severe.” “On the other side, it was the enterprise, and it was even more disheartening. Based on our research and data, which is available, there is no argument that the entire globe is facing a serious skill gap. In fact, McKinsey and Company recently shared a report which said that 87% of companies globally are experiencing a skill gap, or if not, it will fall in the next five years. So, we decided that we will take a step ahead to find out why. Many senior officials did not know the skill level of their employees. And it was because of the lack of engagement, because people have less time, and don’t get contextual, personalised content. All these are aggravating into a bigger skill gap. So, we saw a bridge which is required to be built on both sides, and that’s why we introduced Elite, making learning a habit by bringing personalized and contextual content, whenever you need, for whatever you need and in the way you need it,” he explained.

Elite is a simple and user-friendly product. Krishna elaborated further, saying, “When we work with any enterprise, we try to understand what kind of requirements they have, what kind of job roles they have. Based on the job roles and requirements for skill mapping, we deploy it for a company. It takes less than 30 seconds for a person to go and sign up, and once they are done, they give each and every employee or team member their personal advisor. This skilling advisor takes care of everything, like what skills you need to work on, what should be the top priority, etc. And not only that, he also takes care of how we can bring relevant content to you on your feed or for your learning. There are multiple features in Elite which fits each and every persona—I’m just going to cover a few of the very important points—for example, we have something called a feed, which is something like LinkedIn or Facebook. But this has no-nonsense, very focused, highly relevant content related to the skills you’re working on. There is a social element to it too. Let’s say I am working on a project and I’d like to have a video which is related to a skill I can share with my friend or colleague. I can create a list of content and share with different team members. There are also multiple features. For instance, on Sunday, when you’re taking rest, and getting ready for the next week, it plans out everything for you. And on Monday, when you are at work, it says that ‘based on your upcoming meetings and the projects, these are the videos you can watch, articles you can read, podcasts you can hear’. This is the new way of learning and skilling which Elite brings in.”

Addressing the Covid-19 pandemic which has affected almost all sectors, Krishna said, “Even though Covid is not one of the best things to experience, a few industries, like ed-tech, have seen a surge. But what we have been noticing is a mixed effect. For example, MOOCs (Massively Open Online Courses) have a very low completion rate of 8-9%. Without getting this problem solved, a surge made these numbers look bad. On the other side, when this entire episode was getting introduced in March, people had thought that now they’re going to have time that they can spend on learning and skilling. Unfortunately, it did not happen that way. Because people are working extra hours now, project delivery times are shorter. So, time had been a constraint and now it’s become even worse. But we are glad to see 200% crosses because, for us, user engagement is a top priority. That is why we saw a very good output during Covid.”

Speaking about how one can use the platform and describing the subscription model, Rohan Krishna said, “It has a very simple and affordable annual subscription plan. The cost varies from enterprise to enterprise because we do not work with just MNCs, but also startups, MSMEs, midsize companies across industries, from IT software to healthcare, hospitality and others. It’s a customizable product, and based on the features that the enterprise wants for the employees and themselves, the cost gets defined. But, yes, we can say that it has an excellent ROI in terms of usage.”

Talking about future plans, Krishna said, “In terms of an expansion plan, at the moment, we are just focusing on enterprises in India, the Middle East and Asian countries. But, next year, we do have plans to expand our operations to the US, Canada and Spanish-speaking countries. We have some big fat brands working with us, using us, and every month we have new companies who come and say, ‘Hey, here are my employees, help us out in getting them engaged, let’s bring some smiles on their faces in terms of learning and skilling’. And we are happy to see that. We find personal notes from users or end-users where they thank us for such a feature on a product. We feel very satisfied and that gives us more power to go ahead every day and extend and go for a bigger reach.”