In March 2019, our 12-person team sat down in a summer house in the south of Denmark. The topic we wanted to talk about was an idea we had for a product. The product didn’t have a name yet (that would come a week later), but we knew that we had to make it. The next day we wrote the first line of code, and a week later we decided to call it Eduflow.
Now, we are wrapping up 2021, the third year of working on Eduflow. Back in 2019 we were looking forward - dreaming. Today, I want to look back a bit. I want to write about what we have accomplished in 2021. When thinking about progress, there is a tendency to focus too much on where you are, and not enough on where you are going - and how fast you are getting there.
Compounding growth is not intuitive. If something grows 1% each week, it will grow 1.7x in a year. But if it grows 5% each week, then it will grow 12x in a year. The difference in outcomes is immense, even with smaller variations in growth rate.
One of the magical things about building software, is that the work you put in accumulates. Every new feature we build is here to stay - even after we stop working on it. And every new functionality we add, will work together with the other things already implemented. So the power of the software will grow exponentially over time, as long as the features keeps playing well together.
This is the philosophy behind Eduflow. Every new feature is useful in itself, but every new feature is more powerful when combined with the existing functionality. We strive to build a product where users can be creative, and where flexibility and power are at the center.
What we did in 2021
I wanted to figure out how much we got done in 2021. When I compiled this list and showed it to the team, it brought motivation and pride - we got a lot more done than we thought. But for me, it mainly brought optimism. Being able to improve the product this much in 2021, just imagine what we are able to do in 2022 and onwards.
The foundation of Eduflow is the learning activities that you add to your course. In the last year we added our Quiz activity, a Certificate activity, a SCORM activity, an Embed activity and a bunch of custom embed activities including HapYak, Typeform, Padlet, Google Docs, Google Slides and Google Forms.
Another big project in 2021 was adding group functionalities to Eduflow. Most work we do is done with others - yet most tools lack functionality to support this properly. We added the ability to form groups with our Group Formation activity, and to use these groups for group submissions, group peer feedback, group feedback reflections and through our new Group Member Review activity.
One of the bigger topics for 2021 was enabling our customers to customize the look and feel of their courses. We added a new way to pick course thumbnails, we implemented support for cover photos on learning activities, we added emoji icons and we made it possible to change colours, fonts and logo for your institution. Finally we implemented a whole new content editor which makes it possible to edit all your rich learning content directly as learners see it.
When a business uses Eduflow at scale, then we need to play together with their other systems. To do this, we implemented an API for Eduflow and built a Zapier integration. We also made it possible to use SSO with Eduflow, so authentication of your users becomes smooth, and you can now get your own custom subdomain.
New features are nice and shiny - but improving things we already have is equally important. In 2021 we made a bunch of smaller additions and improvements to the product. There are too many to mention everything, but we added support for rich text feedback, video feedback and numerical feedback in all feedback activities. We added filters and sorting to our results page and summary page. We added support for rich content in our quiz activity, made it possible to retry it multiple times and we completely redesigned our discussion activity. We also added bulk download of submissions, deadline notifications, the ability to resize your sidebar and an improved page to add new activities.
Not everything is about functionality though. In 2021 we spent a lot of time on security, accessibility, performance and privacy. We improved performance in a bunch of places around the app. We removed a bunch of third party services and now allow you to keep all data about your learners within EU. We continue to get 100% on our accessibility scores, and we created a VPAT. Finally, we are undergoing a SOC2 audit now which we expect to finish in January 2022 and we become Cyber Essentials certified.
All in all, we have moved more than 1,000 Trello cards from “Up for grabs” to “Done”. What a year!
What will we do in 2022?
It is easy to list what we did. Deciding what to work on next is a much more daunting task. To go into 2022 prepared and focused, we have selected a few topics that we will be prioritizing.
Our main focus until now has been to create an exceptional experience for learners. This is working well, and we keep getting great feedback. In that process, we have had to down-prioritize the instructors and institutional admins. Many of our customers today have hundreds of instructors, many thousands of learners and hundreds of courses. We want to make it easy to manage an institution of that size in Eduflow.
We also want to improve the performance of Eduflow. This means improving the speed of the app overall, and it means building better infrastructure to keep scaling. Initially the biggest courses had hundreds of learners. Then we saw thousands. Then tens of thousands. We are yet to see 100,000 learners in a single course - but it is just a matter of time. Finally, we need to make sure that Eduflow is easy for us to build on. Cleaning up old technical debt is important to keep the momentum.
Finally, we are going to focus on onboarding and activation of new users. Setting up a learning management system can be daunting. But it doesn’t have to be. We want to build functionality that makes it easy for new people to get started - without the need to talk to sales, contact our support or talk to your own IT team.
While these are the main topics for 2022, we will be doing other things too. But the more focus we have, the faster we move. Thanks for a great 2021, and hope to see you on Eduflow in 2022.
David and the team at Eduflow