RM Results, the digital assessment solutions business that works with leading exam boards and educational institutions across the globe, has launched its own in-house innovation lab. RM Studio is driving the continuous development of new and existing products and services, harnessing the latest technologies including machine learning and artificial intelligence to create and improve education and assessment solutions for lifelong learning.
The overarching aim of RM Studio is to design and develop solutions that make education and assessment a more positive experience for all those involved, from learners to assessors, awarding organisations to educational institutions.
RM Studio uses tried-and-tested start-up methods to accelerate projects. When a need or opportunity to add value has been identified, either within RM Results or through their discussions with students, educators, and awarding bodies, solutions are proposed until the most viable is settled on. After this, various innovation tools and methods are utilised, and the team are coached on how to best manage and progress their innovations. A minimum viable product is designed, and feedback is used to develop it further.
The new initiative is spearheaded by Roberto Hortal, who has been building the RM Studio innovation team leading a design-thinking approach across the business, since his appointment to the newly-created Head of Innovation role in January 2019. RM Studio works closely with customers including Cambridge Assessment, the International Baccalaureate and SQA to understand and anticipate the needs of the assessment sector now and in the future.
Prior to joining RM in 2019, Roberto gained over two decades of experience in implementing innovation programmes, having previously been responsible for significant “first ever” digital milestones at Nokia, easyJet, MORE TH>N, EDF Energy and Co-Op Group. This increased investment from RM Results in innovation marks the company’s commitment to a more direct, mature approach to innovation, and is part of its continuing efforts to drive the global modernisation of assessment.
A key aspect of RM Studio is creating a culture of innovation to further the individual empowerment of employees, offering them opportunities to pursue their own ideas and, potentially, see them developed and added to the RM product suite.
Roberto Hortal, Head of Innovation at RM Results, says:
“The landscape of education looks nothing like it did twenty years ago. Education and technology are now inextricably linked, and increasingly we are seeing people engaging with education throughout their lives, rather than just their school and university years. As the world of education diversifies, we want to be providing cutting edge solutions for markets as they emerge and grow. We firmly believe that, by focusing our innovative efforts through a structured, supportive pipeline, RM Studio is precisely what will allow us to achieve this.”
“Education and technology are intersecting in all sorts of ways, from wearable devices, to remote teaching, to artificial intelligence. New opportunities are constantly presenting themselves, and educators are always on the lookout for solutions that offer flexibility and make their jobs and lives easier. We want to enable the best lifelong learning opportunities for everyone.”
Richard Little, Product Development Director at RM Results, commented:
“The addition of a Head of Innovation to our team, and subsequent launch of RM Studio, has allowed us to push forward with a new wave of initiatives, and is perfectly timed as we prepare to launch new products. At RM Results, everyone is encouraged to innovate, it is a celebrated part of our culture. Roberto’s expertise and experience in successfully bringing innovation to various industries means he is the perfect figurehead to lead our ambitious plans.”
While RM Studio operates in-house, RM Results is keen to explore opportunities for partnerships and open innovation, and in doing so bring the collaborative approach of RM Studio to their relationships with others.
"Educators are always on the lookout for solutions that offer flexibility and make their jobs and lives easier. We want to enable the best lifelong learning opportunities for everyone."
Roberto Hortal, Head of Innovation at RM Results