What's New | Orah Connect May 2024
On-Demand Webinar with Ronan Quirke and Tiago Penteado

We’ve been working hard since we brought you last month’s Orah Connect updates. We look forward to showing you what you can now do with Orah
In this webinar, you’ll discover: Orah’s latest communications features, particularly how Direct P2P chat works between staff and between staff & students. How to automate important communications that your school needs to make, and why automation is more reliable than manual alerts in many cases. How you can add these features to your account if they have not been enabled already.


Getting started

Navigate to www.orah.com/demo if you would like to set up a trail of Orah Connect for your school.


Ronan Quirke: Hi everybody, I'm Ronan I'm a product manager here at Orah. And so I, alongside Kurt, and one of the co CEOs at Orah between the two of us, we manage the different products that Orah provides which I'll maybe just give you a quick run through Some of you may have been on a webinar I did about two weeks ago around the general platform capability, which kind of underpins the kind of the different products was showing you the importing users and user roles and things like that.

But today I'm going to be talking about communications. There's three kind of core product areas that we have. It's attendance, where are my students student care, where are my students mentally, and communications how are we communicating with our students and which essentially brings those two other products together in many ways.

That's how I think about it. So yeah, so today I'm just going to very quickly. Quickly go through a bunch of updates since the last communications webinar we did a few months ago. As you would expect, we've been busy and we've been working hard on a number of things. And the last webinar, we were really getting started on that and we had a lot of things that I was showing you as design concepts.

Some of those things are now live and some of those Things are almost live. So today's a great opportunity for you to get a quick insight into what's coming and what's available. And for you to also give us some feedback cause there's lots of different pieces to this puzzle that we're putting together for you.

And I'd love to hear what's more important. What would you like us to do next? What would you like us to do after that? And because I have some ideas, different schools have different ideas, but the more we hear from you the more the, we can figure out what works best for you. So appreciate all your feedback and a special thanks to everybody who's given me feedback so far.

So today's agenda, as I said, I'm just going to give you a demonstration of the communications overview capability and also keen to show you the communications monitor capability, which we're going to be working on today. And a little while. So today's is good opportunity for you to show what we're thinking as our first release in this and say, does that work for you?

Does it not really appreciate any thoughts you have on that? And the thing that the development team shout out to The Growth Pod, who are a bunch of dedicated developers who are really into this project at the moment. We're working on Conversations. It's three quarters built at the moment.

I might give you just a live demo of what we've built so far and also show you a little bit of the full version that we're releasing as well just to show you how close we are but also to give you an insight into how we build things and which might give you some insights into how you can give us some feedback and keep us on the right track as well.

So yeah, so overview and communications monitor. This is all about, as we talked about in our last communications webinar, about making sure that important issues are surfaced. And we're doing that in two ways and I'll just jump in and and show you that. So the first one is communications overview.

And This is I'm going to, I'm going to be challenging myself now. So this is what we showed you a few months ago was the design that we said we were going to be making. So snapshot that in your brains and this is what we have built. So this is live today. This is my test account. And this test account I'm a student sorry, I'm a teacher called and I I was going to say just a teacher.

Teachers are not just teachers. They're brilliant. But my, my role in this school is a teacher role. I'm not an admin. And so I have access to the both the broadcast feature, but also this new tab in communications for communications overview. And, okay, maybe you're being suspicious, maybe Ron has gamed the system by making his user the communications champion for the school but it is true because Karen has been sending a bunch of different broadcasts there to her students and keeping them up to date on a bunch of different things that has happened.

I just sent a broadcast just a little while ago, yes. And that has updated as well. Communications champion. So what we're doing here is across the school, and I'll show you in the admin view a little bit better, as you can see the ranking of everybody is we're basically, we're measuring how your users are communicating and scoring them relatively across the school based on their engagement, their activity level and their overall communications level.

So what we're looking for is, are they communicating regularly? Are those communications being received and responded to and those things together over time kind of gives you a ranking as to where you sit across the school. A little bit of fun, but also a little bit of a useful tool from an admin point of view to see our people communicating as we roll out capabilities, the moment this is just using your broadcast data, but when we're doing direct conversations or group conversations, that'll come into play as well.

So that is your kind of, your ranking. You also see as an end user any of your recent communications. In the design you could see some direct conversations. As that hasn't gone live yet, that wouldn't be showing. So you're just seeing your broadcasts. I can click into the broadcast I sent a little while ago where I wanted to know which students were going to bring their science experiment into class tomorrow.

Tau and Scott. So Tau is, Scott isn't Amy is, so I can see that from my broadcast responses. Wonderful. So I can see that overview. I can also see My message is how I sent three kind of messages via text message and I sent 10 via email. So I've again, I'm using things appropriately, not sending SMS when I don't need to, only for important things.

My, so yeah, one of my broadcasts was sent via SMS. And email which was my dad joke of the day. I got an A on my origami assignment when I turned my paper into my teacher. So I thought that was a relevant dad joke and teacher joke. So down here I've got hard to reach students. So this is a student that isn't getting my messages.

And you can see that yes they didn't receive a broadcast. When I actually look into this broadcast There was one student that didn't receive it because we actually have no email address on file for that student. Hopefully that's not a common occurrence in your school. So yes, so from this from this broadcast overview, your end users will get a really good sense of what's happening in the in the school from a communications point of view.

Now, what I'm going to do now is I'm just going to use the same account, so I don't have to log back in, but in the background, I'm going to update this user permissions to an administrator. And hopefully if that saves for refresh. Wonderful. Now this is the admin view for communications overview, so you get to see all the things that are happening across the school, so you're getting a sense of what communications are being sent, overall volumes to whom, bearing in mind you can send communications to students, contacts, aka parents, family members, and also to staff as well.

I can also see the number of different kind of contact records I have in my school, and this report as well, this little tab here, we thought would be quite an important one to add to the communications overview is unreachable students. So those students that, don't have contact information. So if you've got this overview down here, if you click that, it takes you down to this list where you can see all your students, but you can filter by those without any contact information and that go ahead and take action.

Now, By and large, I'm guessing that since all our customers are very organized, you're likely going to have something more that maybe you don't have mobile the mobile number hasn't been verified, and you might want to have a look for anybody who doesn't have that or another option off the screen here, like contact information I've got no email address for that student.

For example, just maybe a more likely scenario where you don't have a mobile number. So you can filter on that and find the students that you need to follow up on. He also has the same capability for contacts and staff. So really helping you with, your communications hygiene. So number one, priority is making sure that you have accurate contact information.

Hard to reach students I showed you earlier. So these are students that aren't getting messages for a number of reasons. You might have a mobile number on file for them. But those SMSs aren't getting through because maybe they changed their number. So they will be not delivered or they don't have an email address on file things like that.

So again, maybe you think you have contact records for that student, but if they're in the hard to reach area, then probably not. Perhaps those contact those contact details aren't up to date. I also showed you that sort of leaderboard view for the end users. This is the I split the admin view where you can see who's number one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, and 10 across the school.

So you can see there's lots of, members of the Orah team have been busy sending out some test messages in this account. So that is, yeah, communications overview. This is the admin view. And that was the earlier I showed you the communications overview for end users. So hoping that is helpful for you to yeah, just.

Take, just have, a good sense of what's going on and some of the key kind of aspects of communications around communications hygiene, making sure you've got your contact information up to date and looking at how people are messaging. So you can make sure that you're, you've got a good sense of what's happening in terms of communications and also how effective it is as well.

So that's the overview. The, I'll just, the, Other capability we talked about the last time was communications monitor. So this is your ability to have a sense of oversight and I suppose the ability to ensure that you're comfortable as a school in terms of what's happening in terms of communications and that nothing is falling through the cracks in terms of communication.

Concerning tone messages and things like that. So we, we're, what we're doing, in, in terms of the first build out of that is giving you something simple to to use straight away. And how this will work is in two ways. So there will be an additional permission for those of you who are admins and are familiar with the permission settings.

There will be a communications monitor permission, which you want to set to the appropriate number of staff that you would like to have that capability. And if you have that capability, then you'll have access to the the monitor tab under communications where you can see any conversations.

That are happening in the school. What we're building out initially is just a very simple view. It's basically a, just a see everything that's happening without some of the more advanced concepts that we showed you in our designs around monitoring for specific keywords and that we're definitely looking to build up with this.

The first iteration we, what we're hearing is you like us to have the core communications capability built out. To give you something simple initially just to get working on and then we can work with and we use schools to refine tune exactly how you want to use the kind of a more advanced capability about monitor of conversations.

Also got some feedback around concerns around privacy and access and things like that as well. So really interested to hear if you have any thoughts on that and how students and staff would feel about this. But obviously, recognizing the fact that schools do have a duty and responsibility to Maintain control and oversight of the communications that are happening within the school for school purposes.

So yeah, so that is just a preview of what we're looking to do initially for communications monitor. So then just jumping quickly on so the next school challenge that we were focused on is organizing and structuring communications in the way that schools operate. One of the main things here is conversations.

So direct messages and group messages are fall under the conversations banner versus the broadcasts, which you just sending things out. So conversations is something that the development team are actively working on at the moment. What I'll do is maybe I'll just show you, look Quick preview of where we're at, so that we are looking to have conversations, the first release of conversations out by early June.

And so this is my kind of our development account. So this isn't what you can access in your own account just yet. But within the home board, I'll just go back to the home board. You'll have a new tab for my conversations. And within that, then, you can actually have conversations. We've got this little test button here to see how we can do that.

You also create, find a student to create a conversation with, and That's what we're working on at the moment. We've got a few more weeks of development to go to add in some more things. So I'll just show you what the actual design looks like. So you can see we're pretty close.

Just need to, we're currently working on the ability to send and receive those messages, pretty key. But yeah, we're quite far along in that development. We're looking forward to releasing that. So this is the staff view, what as an end user. Oops, I just clicked the wrong button there.

I'll just go back to that and also did want to show you, so that's the staff view. It's also got the student view, obviously, and you're going to have the students will have a new section called communications, and they'll see any conversations that they are a part of, and they can put in their response and send that through.

Wonderful. So that is the student view. They'll also have a similar view on the desktop. Version of the student app as well. And so that will work very similar. So just trying to make sure that we've got it nice and consistent, pretty simple for students as we talked about before, just to remind you how we think about conversations is that only staff can initiate a conversation students can respond to a conversation created by a staff member.

But they can't create conversations to themselves, which limits them from being able to create conversations with other students, for example, but also with staff members where you'd rather keep it a sort of, they can give you back and forth if if you've initiated that conversation, but for the time being they won't be able to, students won't be able to create, start a conversation with somebody that they're not already in a conversation with.

There's probably some use cases out there where you maybe you do want to provide that, for example tutors or advisors. The great thing about doing communications in Orah is we have that data. We can see a relationship. Okay, so this this student is in an advisor class or a tutor class and that, And we also see that there's a staff member in that advisor class or that tutor class as well.

And so we could create that linkage. So there are ways we could do that, if that's something that you'd be interested in doing. We also have the idea, which we're going to be building on a little bit later, once we've released this, of kind of permanent conversations, which might be advisory conversations or group classes and things like that as well.

So that is yeah, just a little update in terms of what we're, Actively working on what's coming very soon. Yeah, I'm really excited about what we'll be going live with in early June. In early June, there will be direct messages, which we're going to be focused on, and then group conversations will be coming on a little bit after that.

Because of, some of that feedback we're keen to incorporate into group conversations as I mentioned. So there's conversations. So yeah so really keen to make sure that we're making communications clear and simple by keeping it in Orah, using the existing student and staff data, and using the kind of the same permissions and access that you're already using across your other products as well.

So that's really A run through of what we've got today. Yeah, as Orah is we're lucky to have customers right around the world and many of you have been giving us feedback on this. And yeah, fair to say that different regions, different countries do have different communications need or facing different challenges around this.

So it's really useful for us to hear from different schools around the world, so we can actually incorporate that in and make a, Better product because sometimes something is front of mind from a compliance or regulatory point of view in Australia, but that might come later on and be a necessity for us customers as well, or vice versa.

Hearing from everybody and understanding the different needs does make sure that we deliver some better solutions. Um, so that's a quick run through. As I said do please make sure that if you don't have communications product already. And Orah, let us know and we can set you up at the trial if you'd like to so that you can be ready for for the release in early June of conversations, or if you already what we're doing with broadcasts do also want to acknowledge that we've got some feedback already around other capabilities you'd like to see in broadcasts, like templates and schedules and things like that.

We're definitely We've got that on our to do list. We're just focusing on getting conversations to a really good point before we we do that. , so that's, yeah, as I said, that's a pretty quick run through. Hopefully that's that's useful. Just a couple of other things to just to remind you of, if you already do have communication set up in your account is to make sure that access has been given to all the right staff. Bearing in mind that because of what we've done around Sort of different access rules for communications.

You can actually limit access to specific groups. For example, if I just show you very quickly I think I have a communications role here that I've set up in my test account. And so what you could do, if you only wanted to give access to specific So staff with this communications role can only access, for example the students that are in their classes.

So you might do something like just do academics, for example. So in this case, this user role if I was a teacher of English classes in the school, I'd be able to do broadcasts to any of the students that are enrolled in my English classes. To this permission, but I wouldn't be able to send a broadcast out to the whole school.

So if you're worried about giving access to the communications capability to all staff, because you're just too worried that somebody is going to send something. Crazy to all school then you can definitely use the permissions to do and yeah, just create a role like this and you can actually provide a limit on that.

You can also use tags in houses, of course, as well, depending on what makes most sense to you or what's available to you as well. Yeah, so that's just a quick tip if you are wondering about how you About providing access to to staff a bit wider than you currently do.

Awesome. But yeah, I will leave it there then. So Really appreciate your time today and yeah, do please get in touch. We're super excited about what we're doing here around communications, but the more feedback and the more use cases or problems you have at the moment, your existing communications that you can let me know about the better we can solve the challenges around communications today.

So I'll look forward to hearing from you. Awesome. Thanks everyone for joining. Thanks. Bye bye.

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