Digital Transformation in education: cocreation of FAEL's new Student Portal and App

Industry: education

Outcome: web and mobile applications

Languages + Tools: Ruby on Rails, React Native com Expo, CoffeeScript, jQuery, JavaScript, Heroku, PostgreSQL, Logentries, Memcached

Project schedule: 8 and 7 months

To us, it wasn’t just another project, but an entire process of change. We developed not only a new technology, but a new mindset. We changed the way we conduct our innovation initiatives and the way we look at our clients. These gains were possible because of the constant knowledge reciprocity we had with ateliware. Nowadays, thanks to this partnership, not only Fael’s technological structure is quite different from what it used to be, but also everything we do is too.

Isis Marcelino | Software Development Director FAEL

1 Why?

To integrate 650 educational centers, improving communication between them

To integrate 650 educational centers, improving communication between them

Democratized learning. That's FAEL's main goal. Besides having more than 650 educational centers all over Brazil, FAEL was also the very first private education institution to offer distance learning for undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

Our partnership began in 2018, when FAEL was looking for a technology supplier that would be capable of not only developing a software, but also contributing to the business strategy.

The challenge was to deepen our knowledge about the educational market, which is FAEL's expertise, so that together we could define the priorities, plan and co-create a 100% customized digital product. At the time, FAEL was looking for a solution that would be efficient in terms of usability and accessibility, once the institution serves students with different profiles and needs.

Since every FAEL's units works with their own information, dealing with several rules, test dates and other procedures, the institution also needed a solution able to integrate and improve the communication between students and the educational centers.

2 How?

being efficient while attending user’s needs

“On this journey, we analyzed and respected all users' needs. This was a huge gain for FAEL. Previously, we used to work based on our own opinions. The data we collected helped us to better understand our client’s behaviour”, says Isis Marcelino, FAEL’s IT Director.

In order to select the finest technology, we did proofs of concept: low cost tests focused on determining which option is the best for the digital product.

Every digital product development should start with a Design Research. In it, we track all users’ journeys in order to understand how they will interact with the software. We also create a solid base with it, since we collect business and market information to design the user experience and the user interface before developing the code.

Besides following the steps above, we also built navigable prototypes and tested the software with final users. We made sure we validated our ideas and all product features in prior to going to market.

being efficient while attending user’s needs

3 What?

complete and intuitive web and mobile applications

Our partnership resulted in the development of Portal do Aluno, a responsive web solution, in which FAEL's students can find all the information they need in a single place.

It's so efficient that, right after its implementation, more than 70% of FAEL's students joined the new portal. It took only 6 months for the previous version to be completely discontinued. In other words, the system migration was so fast, that it took only a semester to be entirely replaced. One of the highlights is that, since then, there were no unavailability incidents registered. Since the beginning of this project, FAEL and ateliware have been working together in ongoing improvements.

We also created "App do Aluno", launched in May 2021. It's a mobile app serving as an unified communication channel between the institution and it's students, replacing the traditional (and outdated) email marketing.  The app may also be used to create a studying routine and to follow all class activities, which maintains students more interested about their learning experience.

More than a punctual project, our partnership with FAEL was the beginning of a transformation process. When getting in touch with our software development methodology, the educational institution started treating technology, innovation and digital transformation as the center of its business strategy.

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