We talked to Suresh Ramakrishnan of Eduriser Learning Solutions about digital learning solutions and the COVID-19.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Suresh Ramakrishnan: It was more of an endeavor to be safe and keep family safe. It took a bit of time, but all of us adapted to being at home till the government allowed us to move around for our daily needs.
Working from home kept the business running, and being in the corporate eLearning space, most firms found that as a good option to keep employees engaged in a structured learning journey. Children started attending classes through video conferencing facilities.
Tell us about you, your career, how you joined Eduriser Learning Solutions.
Suresh Ramakrishnan: I joined the company in 2016 after a longish stint in various media organizations (print media, to be specific). I joined with a mandate of bringing in the necessary structure to the organization – with clear cut focus on sales and service through delivery (and client retention)
How does Eduriser Learning Solutions innovate?
Suresh Ramakrishnan: No two clients are the same. Every client has its own learning requirement born out of a business need, internal restructuring, or an effort to drill in the vision and value statements into its employees.
The existing structure, culture, and internal processes mandate a thorough study and coming up with unique solutions to implement a learning journey.
This may entail innovations on the deployment front, including custom, made schedules to make the learning journey engaging and effective.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Suresh Ramakrishnan: We see budget cuts across the board. Negotiations have become more aggressive and long-drawn, budgets on the client side have either been withdrawn or severely curtailed, and payments took much longer in the first four months of the pandemic. At our end, we had to evaluate our business lines, and those that were severely affected by the pandemic – like classroom training had to be relooked and restructured.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Suresh Ramakrishnan: Yes, we had to. Cost monitoring became more intense; we took pay cuts too to see through the situation. Some employees had to be relieved as their positions became redundant after careful evaluation of our business lines. The big lesson – learn to adapt to the situation and make the right choices to wade through the tough business environment.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety?
Suresh Ramakrishnan: Communication is the only way. We have company meetings twice a week, where all questions/doubts are addressed. Our team leaders meet their staff / talk to them on a daily basis to address their concerns, if any. We have maintained utmost transparency on all the company’s happenings, which has helped us gain the employees’ trust and support.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Suresh Ramakrishnan: There are several in the fray depending on which piece of the business we talk about. We have strong competitors on the content front from players like Skill Soft. There are platform players, too, like Success Factors, Sum Total, Degreed, Up Side LMS, etc.
We are sought after for the quality and depth of the content we bring forth. Our content is curated by the best minds in the world – Marshall Goldsmith and Tom Peters are just two of the several who we have on board. This, combined with the learning experience that our platform offers, is unparalleled, and we have won several global awards on this front.
Your final thoughts?
Suresh Ramakrishnan: The pandemic has forced us to take a hard look at our business and operations, and it has brought in the much-needed clarity on the path we need to choose and the team that will help make it happen. We are lean and operationally efficient.