Built hundreds of website and helped countless schools realise their potential online. Ian should be called upon for straight-talking advice and to make a difference to the way you present your school through every outlet.
2021 marks Schudio's 10 year anniversary! Here is the story so far.
Back in 2011, we were invited to tender for a sixth form college website project. The main problems the college were facing were the need to find a stable and reliable provider for their website. But also, they were struggling to empower various members of their team to manage website content across a large organisation.
Our aim was to provide a solution that was reliable and easy to use. The answer was to build bespoke software that met their needs. We won the contract and built the very first version of the Schudio CMS. Very quickly, another sixth form college got in touch to tell us they were having exactly the same issues. They came to us for a solution.
Having been building websites for over 10 years at this point, we found our niche.
We love working with schools! We're privileged to serve some amazing clients and we thrive off seeing schools celebrate their successes using Schudio solutions.
Everything we do is done with the express aim of making it easier for schools to shout about all the amazing things that go on in school day by day.
When we set out on this journey, we had a very clear picture of who we wanted to be as a company. We had some very clear goals ...
Everything we do is with the aim of making life in school just a little easier.
When we add unique features such as our compliance checker, our policy manager and our unique approach to integrations and partnerships, we always make sure it is of benefit to those we serve. We don't shy away from adding more features to the software continually, but we try to ensure that the system remains easy to use.
We've been saying it for years, but anyone can build a website for a school and do a decent job of making it look nice. When school website experts should come into their own is with their understanding of the sector.
A critical part of that is knowing that there are a wide range of skill levels and most definitely a huge pressure on time within school. That's why we always strive to ensure that we provide the best and endlessly patient support we can possibly provide.
We love supporting schools and we love watching schools use their websites amazingly even more.
The old adage goes that if you're not moving forward you're going backwards. We take a pragmatic approach to innovation - we're always looking for ways to innovate but we never do it without applying what we've learned over the years.
Every time we build something new or look at partnerships it's important to us to make sure that everything we do fits in with our values.
We love taking time to chat with our clients about our ideas. Even more, we love clients to come to us with crazy ideas for us to explore.
We never wanted the business to be here to simply make money. We run the business very pragmatically and have no intentions of becoming a business that has been absorbed by one of 'the big guys'. That's not what makes us tick.
We love being a family run business and being available to our clients.
And we also want to make a difference.
For very personal reasons, we ensure that we support a range of projects close to our hearts both locally and internationally. We've been involved in building schools for children with diverse abilities in Uganda and have made industry-leading SEND training available both in-person and online that otherwise would not be accessible (and this was before COVID drove a surge in online training).
If you were to ask us what gets us up in the morning more than anything else. It would be this. The children we, directly and indirectly, provide support and education for are our treasures of grace. They are our driving force. That's what makes us want to continue to support schools well and never stop innovating.
Part of the vision was to be innovative and to never lose that drive. It is a huge part of who we are, it's what keeps us moving and excites us. Over the years we have led the way in a number of areas but there are some innovations we're most proud of.
All of these innovations have had significant impacts on the engagement and website landscape over the years. We continue to strive to seek out new and exciting ways to innovate for our clients.
It's amazing to us how many schools still come with the same issues as back in 2011. Conversations often include statements like, "the software is clunky and difficult to use" or "we never hear from our website provider". The same issues faced by schools a decade ago are still apparent for many schools. Our commitment is to continue to defy this and empower those working in schools to achieve more and do it faster.
In the past 10 years, we have grown organically, entirely built on innovation and support. We currently serve hundreds of UK schools with website provision and engagement services, and support over 50,000 people with online training across a broad range of areas via SchudioTV.
As we look to the future, our goal is to continue to grow but to do so in a way that means we are able to maintain the levels of support and care we have maintained through the years. We aim to remain stable and effective and a trustworthy partner. We aim to continue to invest in our staff, to foster the values we hold dear and provide a nurturing but exciting environment for our team to develop their careers.
What about specifics? The coming years will very much be about three main driving forces.
The education landscape is changing all the time. That's nothing new. But currently, there is a trend of businesses being absorbed into bigger and bigger organisations. Consolidation is good and exciting. But it can stifle innovation. Our intention is to create strong partnerships with like-minded businesses to provide the best possible solution while remaining flexible and approachable.
The past 10 years have been fuelled by our continued innovation and nothing will change here. We have a number of exciting new developments in the pipeline and are focused on bringing new and exciting features to our clients.
We are also excited by what is possible through iteration. There are always new things we can learn and things we can do better. And so, we continue to invest in improving the service and provision we already have in place to continue sustained but stable growth.
We're incredibly excited to announce that we will shortly be launching the Schudio Experts programme, designed to celebrate school website managers and all the wonderful things you achieve. The programme will be launched alongside our new Community Programme and will offer the chance to be featured in our blog, at SchudioCon, podcasts and a rewards scheme, providing an amazing platform for those Schudio clients who are doing an incredible job of managing their websites.
More details will be released in the coming weeks.
We can't wait to see what the next 10 years bring. And we're so glad you're with us for the journey.
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