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Why Russian Education Company Decided to Offer Free Lessons

Foxford

4. Quality Education

Overview

Foxford introduced business model which allows the company always to develop the quality of provided education and, in the same time, influence the education system in the whole country. Foxford offers free educational courses for pupils, collect important feedback from parents and students, organize conferences with the participation of teachers and parents to discuss education problems. These features contribute to the fact that other educational organizations also improve the quality of their services to maintain competition. Moreover, the quality level of students from each region of Russia is starting to be on the same rate, because now the people from remote areas have the opportunity to study by the same high quality standards as pupils from the Central area of Russia do.

Authors

Kirill Orishchenko

Kirill Orishchenko

Pavel Borodin

Pavel Borodin

Andrey Buchevskiy

Andrey Buchevskiy

Rolan Ibragimov

Rolan Ibragimov

Tihon Kozlov

Tihon Kozlov

School

The Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA)

The Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA)

Professor

Natalia Yankovskaya

Natalia Yankovskaya

Innovation

Foxford created business model which allows the company to always raise the educational level of society. In addition to Foxford’s paid training programs, the company provides Russian pupils with free courses in their social media. So, people from every place can study well-qualified educational materials and become more intelligent and learn many new aspects.

It also implemented video reviews from parents and children about the company's educational services. Moreover, Foxford organizes conferences for teachers and parents to collect information about aspects that can be improved or introduced into the educational system.

The innovative approach emerged when Foxford wanted to improve current English skills among Russian schoolboys and girls, especially for those who live in the distinct areas, where the education quality is still not good enough, so the company came up with the idea to publish their English courses for Pre-Intermediate level. When the company realized that free access to the materials both increased the number of people who want to take Intermediate courses, Foxford started to publish more courses in other subjects and implement other technologies which might improve the quality of education.

The analytic department, marketing department, the board of director, production department were involved in the process of creating, approving and realization of the innovation.

The analytic department was responsible for identifying and calculating the risks, conversion, effects on the image of the company. Marketing department took care of designing the project and creating budget. The board of director made changes in the project. Production department chose the courses which will be published, created some education materials and organize online conference to interact with pupils and their parents.

The mission of online school is to equal the opportunities of pupils from all regions to get the access to the knowledge and best teachers. So that the innovation relates the company’s mission because every person, who has the access to the Internet, is able to gain high-quality knowledge.

“I was faced with the task of implementing video reviews from parents and children about the company's educational services. This innovation would help to obtain a more accurate and objective assessment of the quality of courses for their subsequent improvement” said Yana Rotach, Product manager of the company.

“The company wanted to hold online conferences on school education for teachers and parents. The purpose of this project was to increase the loyalty and trust of parents to Foxford, as well as to collect information about aspects that can be improved or introduced into the educational system.”

Why Russian Education Company Decided to Offer Free Lessons

Inspiration

The company had a clear goal – to increase the Foxford awareness, in order to compete in the overflooded market. What do Russian consumers love most of all? – freebie and good quality. That’s why the best solution seemed to establish free video materials. But on what topic? The topic must be helpful and actual to the target-customer, that’s why the information correlated with the most popular language in the world, English, was the best choice.

More than that, many people from distinct parts of Russia really wish to gain the good knowledge but just can't because there are no facilities to do it for free and with balance in the work-life routine. So, by free tutorials Foxford has the possibility to get a big number of people from such areas that may become continuous consumers of the on-line courses.

The main motivation and purpose for doing the innovation was to improve the company’s image and performance and help people to get the required information for free in good quality.

Also, it was important to give the possibility to the students from the remote parts of the country to get high-quality education.

“Foxford often provides an opportunity to get education for free. There are several reasons why the company is doing this.

Firstly, free classes allow a potential buyer to try tz product and understand the level of quality that we provide. We are confident in our product, so there is a whole direction of lead generation from trial free classes.

Secondly, the provision of free education allows you to attract attention to the company, increase customer loyalty. In fact, when a business invests in this, it is recorded in the marketing budget, as it is an investment in brand awareness.

Thirdly, we aim to give everyone the opportunity to get a quality education. Very often, in the official sources of Foxford, we publish various videos that contain a squeeze of the most valuable of our courses. These materials can be useful for both parents and their children. For example, some courses can help you pass state exams more successfully.”

Overall impact

When talking about the impact of the innovation on the business, it is necessary to mention several things.

First-of-all, this affair led to the rising of positive image among the users and increasing of the publicity. For example, many students, who are preparing for the exams, searching for the required information, find free materials and, as the result, wonder – “What is Foxford?”. Due to the high quality of free lessons, a big number of pupils started to share them among others graduates and Foxford was on everyone’s lips. The sales increased as the recognition and market share.

To start with the business effects, it is required to say that, of course, the effect was very efficient and productive, but unfortunately it did not last for a long time, because many competitors followed their example and, due to better commodities, they started to provide more free videos than Foxford, so Foxford as a result became less distinguished. However, it is a big honor to be the ancestor of free education materials provider.

Definitely the increase of convenient accessibility to the education is the long-term effect that is only picking up speed. Every day each person even from Chukotka or Kurils Islands can learn a lot of new aspects in various spheres. More than that, the positive influence on environment is also still remains.

What concrete evidence suggests that this impact has occurred?

1. Rise of the Foxford awareness on 37% in 2016;

2. Better results of Foxford students (Unified State Exam) – on the average the client of Foxford passes the basic exams (Russian, English and Math) by 78+ points;

3. Subscribers, views and likes of Foxford videos – 272 thousand of subscribers, 29 914 955 views and around 90 likes on each video;

4. Views and likes on videos connected with social responsibility – 13 videos, 15931 views, 1755 likes.

Business benefit

Because the Foxford provides it's free lessons, they give the access to knowledge to the poor cast of society, allowing them to further enroll in better educational institutions and, as a result, become more successful in the future.

Unfortunately, in Russia, the quality of education in remote regions is not always good, and internet education enables students from remote regions to receive quality education and that gives the prospectives to improve their financial situation in the future

Moreover, according to the COVID-19 situation, online learning has become an essential part in education system and now not only allows you to reduce emissions when using transport, but sometimes it is the only way to gain the necessary knowledge without putting yourself and people around you at risk of infection.

Social and environmental benefit

Many pupils found out the information that they’ve been searching for a long time and according to this fact they understood the material and became better prepared. Also, except the exam courses, Foxford provide the lessons on the others tutorial themes e.g. “how to deal with the worry” or “the steps to attend the university”. After watching these free videos viewers become more prepared to various life issues and use the useful information from our tutorial in the real life.

Moreover, teachers now can send extra materials to students according to their reviews of the lessons, so that the effectiveness of lessons has increased significantly.

Also, today, according to the pandemic situation, the society can learn something new, without the risk to catch the COVID-19.

The impact on the environment may seem meaningless, but actually that is only at first glance. Due to the internet-education, the students started to stay at home more and use the transport that produce the harmful emissions less. Also, a number of provided courses correlate with the sociable responsibility and environment protection, the provided information explains how to act in order to save the world around us.

Sometimes, due to the different circumstances, the person could not obtain the information and there are knowledge gaps. Foxford free videos help to fill in these gaps and provide the free videos with various helpful and useful materials. People may learn them when it would be more convenient and flexible for them, according to their work-live balance.

Promotion of social issues. Except the certain information from school lessons, there are the videos concerning the current social issues: global terror, poverty, ecological disasters, etc. It leads to the awareness about it and as the result the students think of how could they change the situation for the better.

Interview

Yana Rotach, Product Manager

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Foxford

Foxford

Moscow, RU

Business Website: https://foxford.ru

Year Founded: 2009

Number of Employees: 1001 to 5000

Foxford is an international company that provides online education services for students of all ages and teachers. It has been operating for 12 years on the online education market. During this time, it gained about 7.5 million users. At the same time, it now supports 2.5 million unique users monthly. There are different segments in Foxford: 1-1 lessons, mini-groups, online webinars and courses. Also, one of the features of Foxofrd is the home school, which allows to complete the school curriculum at home.