Hypothesis: We believe that creating a blockchain-based certificate storage, issuance, and verification solution will significantly reduce schools’ operational costs associated with credential and certificate requests from former students.
Solution: A digital certificate that has been mathematically transformed and issued to the public Bitcoin Blockchain network. This allows for any individual to validate the authenticity of the digital certificate utilizing a user friendly web application or any Blockchain transaction verification tool of their choosing.
Status: Prepared for Launch; Evaluation In Progress
Anticipated Results: Increased security and efficiencies within the diploma validation and request process and decreased administrative cost per diploma request by an estimated 95%.
Business strategist Dan Tapscott and blockchain expert Alex Tapscott have called blockchain “nothing less than the second generation of the Internet,” with “the potential to disrupt money, business, government, and … higher education.” (Read more here.) We agree. We believe the use of blockchain by highly regulated industries will fundamentally change the Internet and traditional business operation models. Blockchain allows records to be stored indelibly and securely, in a manner that assures end-users of a record’s authenticity; for this reason, it’s sometimes referred to as the “Trust Protocol.”
We recently worked with a large education company with many post-secondary campuses. The company wanted to provide its student body with needed copies of transcripts, diplomas, and other certifications more efficiently. Documents like these not only authenticate a student’s educational claims, they also prove the legitimacy of the university they attended. The reputations of individuals and organizations are on the line. The solution would need to maintain the security and privacy of student data in addition to lowering the per diploma cost of providing this service. Ideally, the solution would also be scalable to new applications and future use, and could be easily integrated into an existing IT infrastructure instead of requiring a brand new tool with a brand new set of operational needs.
Blockchain appeared to offer a high-value, low-risk solution that could initially deploy in a limited way to deliver diplomas only. Providing diplomas via blockchain costs pennies on the dollar compared to manual processes like answering emails, phone calls, and faxes. The records, because decentralized, are highly secure. Students experience improved ease of use without diminished veracity or authenticity of the documentation. The solution is cost-effective, user friendly, and scalable. Inherent flexibility in the architecture allows for support of many other documents, records, and digital assets needed by students.
This is just one example of our work within the digital innovation lab. In the spirit of experimentation and innovation, GoKart Labs collaborates with our clients in innovation labs to test and launch new initiatives designed to improve the target audience’s experience and drive business results. The innovation lab contains an experimental work stream with a set of measurable metrics used to evaluate the work stream’s performance.
At the end of each test period, a decision is made as to whether the work stream will be modified for further testing, discontinued, or scaled up to off-ramp into the wider business. This turns what could be a long, extensive testing process into quick sprints. This extra step is not so much a cost center as a long term strategy for improving both top-line growth and bottom-line impact.