Schools represent a ‘new opportunity for tech suppliers’

The education sector offers PC and tech providers a chance to grow and diversify business, says Richard Picking, international marketing director at specialist supplier Gratnells.

The rise of technology has brought power, data, control, order and increased efficiency to commercial organisations both large and small. 

Schools and colleges, increasingly subject to the same kind of financial accountability and with considerably more freedom to operate than before, now represent a new opportunity for tech suppliers. One way to take advantage of this is for education market specialists to partner with experts in new technologies.

For those who remember the introduction of the whiteboard, considered a revolutionary event in its time, the current rate of adoption of new technologies in schools must be a matter of wonder. The launch of the iPad in 2010 enabled students and teachers to create unique opportunities for personal learning at every level. Tablets have become a bridge of information and today’s children are born into a world of ‘digital immersion’ through the power of touch, motion and sound. BBC reported in 2014 on a study of new technology use in 671 state and independent schools – almost 70 per cent were regularly using tablets and numbers were predicted to more than double between 2014 and 2016, from 430,000 to 900,000.

As large groups of learners gather the ubiquitous availability of phone, tablets and data loggers, this creates a market for ancillary, storage and functional products. Companies with a smart, responsive approach to business and an in-depth knowledge of the education sector are reacting to this rapidly growing demand. Gratnells, for example, has applied its expertise in providing storage systems, good order and management of physical space to this area.

Products such as PowerTrays and PowerTrolleys continuously analyse the appetite for power from digital devices, responding with an optimised rate of charge and syncing between them to produce a complete management system, besides offering secure, efficient storage and availability.

Where the technical skillset of students often surpasses that of the teachers and lecturers, the need for elements of good stewardship and control remain paramount. Product innovations such as these deliver all the benefits of digital resources while retaining proper accountability for equipment, along with ‘regulated’ access and guaranteed readiness of the devices.

Where insightful marketing can be allied to high quality product development, the education sector is ripe for providers to expand and grow their business, delivering the benefits of the digital revolution to a group of eager and willing users who will become tomorrow’s consumers.

About the author

Richard Picking is international marketing director at specialist supplier Gratnells.

PCR’s Sector Spotlight on Education – in association with Tech Data – is running throughout July 2016 – click here for more articles

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