How Linkstreet is applying technology the right way to corporate educationAditya Bhushan Dwivedi
When it comes to education and the merger of technology, schools and colleges are the ideal places to experiment as most people think. Arun Muthukumar, cofounder and CEO of Linkstreet also thought along the similar lines and decided to start Linkstreet. However, he soon saw a better market in terms of corporate learning and decided to capture this with his offering.
Linkstreet was started by Arun Muthukumar and Vikram Ramakrishnan. Arun has worked for over ten years with AT&T and Bell Labs and then came back to India to work with Cisco before starting Linkstreet in late 2011. Vikram is a surgeon and later went on to do an MBA from INSEAD, prior to starting Linkstreet he was a management consultant at Booz and Company(previously Booz Allen Hamilton) in London for eight years.
Talking about why did he start Linkstreet Arun Says,
" For me the defining moment came when I was present in the classroom when we were running the pilot project with Cisco at a rural government school in Tamil Nadu: a place with hardly any facilities, with students studying in Tamil medium. I saw how being able to connect with a good teacher for their 12th standard Mathematics class impacted the students. The attentiveness of the students, the seriousness with which they studied…the whole experience was amazing. I stood at the back of the classroom and saw how life could change for these students by simply providing access to a good teacher. These experiences illustrated to me that the “application” of technology was far more attractive than just “creating” it. "
They initially started Linkstreet to cater their solutions to schools but then they had to face numerous challenges when it came to convincing the school managements to adopt their solutions and the sales cycle could take upto a year. The Decision ladder was also too high. This led them to pivot and target corporate institutions which helped them get a good head start and sign on excellent clients such as IIM-B and ACE. Arun says,
" We started Linkstreet because we wanted to build a platform that addressed the lack of end to end solutions in the Learning & Collaboration space. Let me explain - constant training, knowledge sharing and collaborative learning are activities critical to every organization and employee. Yet the traditional methods followed are ineffective and yield minimal ROI which cannot be measured or monitored.
To solve this complex problem requires addressing the complete workflow: The creation, storage, management and delivery of knowledge across the organization. At Linkstreet, our goal is to address these critical challenges and transform corporate learning from a mandatory boring obligation to something that is continuous, real-time, bite-sized and truly interesting."
Linkstreet helps people by providing cloud-based solutions for learning using their video platform. They have a white-labeled solution which can be employed on per user/per year subscription basis. The per user cost varies from Rs. 500/year to Rs. 2500/year depending on frequency and intensity of use and size of client. Clients can start with as little as 1-2 users.
At present, they have around 30+ clients from across the world in different sectors ranging from Health Care, Educational Institutions, Legal and Creative field. They aim to grow by over 400% in the next 18 months and are also on a hiring spree.