If the COVID-19 lockdowns have taught us anything, it’s that some things are easier to do from home than others. For example, ordering groceries online and catching up with loved ones virtually has become routine, but finding a way to balance work while helping their children with online schooling remains a challenge for parents around the globe.
Remote schooling is hard for everyone involved. Just like the balancing act is hard for parents, it’s hard for students to stay focused and engaged, and it’s hard for teachers to do their job effectively from behind a computer screen. This is a serious challenge, and one that’s likely to stick around for some time.
Beedle, a software company based in Iceland, knew that there had to be a better way to enable remote learning. The idea behind Beedle began back in 2019 when the team was part of a different learning management system. It offered many different integrations with third party platforms and collaboration solutions, and then the idea struck: What if we just built all this functionality directly into these collaboration solutions rather than requiring complex integrations? This would make it even easier for teachers, students, and parents to access their suite of classroom tools.
Beedle then had to decide which collaboration software to focus on. After assessing the market and comparing top collaboration solutions side-by-side, Beedle decided to partner with Microsoft and make Microsoft Teams its focus. There were a number of reasons for this decision—including the industry-leading security and growing popularity of Microsoft Teams—but Beedle says that the deciding factor was the opportunity to become part of the Microsoft partner ecosystem.
According to Guðmundur Axelsson, Beedle’s CTO, their relationship with Microsoft has been incredibly beneficial: “Throughout the whole process, we have had great support in many ways from Microsoft, both on the technical and commercial side. Microsoft helped us develop our product and land key customers.”
Landing key customers like Kinsale
As mentioned by Axelsson, Microsoft has helped Beedle significantly from a go-to-market perspective, helping them identify new potential customers.
One such customer, Kinsale Community School in Ireland, approached Beedle hoping to add new functionality to their Microsoft Teams solution. “The goal was to enable Kinsale teachers to do all of their daily work directly in Microsoft Teams rather than forcing them to use multiple different tools,” explains Melanie Schneider, Head of Pedagogical Development at Beedle. “We considered how Beedle could offer enhanced functionality to Microsoft Teams and, at the same time, integrate our modules seamlessly within Teams, giving the school everything they need in one, familiar environment. We are working closely with Kinsale teachers and administrators to identify what new functionality would be beneficial, then we are extending our roadmap with these requirements.”