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Classroom Monitor - Classroom Monitor

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Classroom Monitor - Classroom Monitor

Success story: Classroom Monitor


David Francis of Classroom Monitor pitched in both London and Nottingham in early 2011, read about his experience…


Classroom Monitor is a software company which provides a website to around 2,000 schools across the country from nursery to primary and secondary education which provides a consistent levelling framework, shared resources and quick and accurate assessment records. Myself and Chris started working together in 2002 as a spin out company at Nottingham Trent University at The Hive with just an idea, and the company has grown organically from that over the last 10 years.

When we decided to pitch we had around 15 members of staff, this has now grown to around 30 in the last 18 months. I pitched in both London and Nottingham in February 2011 because we needed someone to help us strategically to develop our plans and help us to reach the market. We were hoping to find someone with contacts in the sector – who could also help us to develop our existing contacts – and with experience in negotiating partnerships to bring the product to the mass market. We had been trying to do this ourselves, but the day to day running of the business had taken priority so we needed someone separate from this to focus solely on these strategies


We heard about this opportunity through a contact at BioCity in Nottingham who forwarded us the details of the events. We decided it was worth a try as we had been looking to strengthen the team anyway but we didn’t need any investment. Due to having a private investor on board, we weren’t interested in any of the other events as these had all contained fundraising elements – we simply needed someone’s expertise and knowledge.


In the London event, we managed to meet someone that had the specific experience of working in one of the big education technology corporations, as well as a few other people that had relevant skills. Due to this one person having the experience in our sector we decided to go ahead and work with him, although we did have a few other meetings with the other people. Had the right person not been at the event, we would have worked with someone else that we met, but since there was someone with the relevant experience it seemed stupid to not work with them.


The experience of pitching was good for getting the ideas out there, Pitching for Management really did the hard work of finding the people to come and sit and listen to us pitch and for them to be receptive to these ideas, something which is usually very difficult. Pitching for Management built the right environment that makes people listen to all ideas big or small, and it made for a good platform to present to like-minded individuals, people wanted to get involved in high risk businesses but with no cash involvement. It was a very professional environment whilst also being very comfortable and enjoyable.  


We have been using our new contact a few days a month, which has really helped to boost our confidence as we can run our ideas past them which show us that we are making the right choices and decisions – as well as vetting and improving some of our less good ideas. They have also helped us with networking as they have made lots of introductions to other companies, which for our sector helps as it is always changing so we can see what everyone else is doing.



Classroom Monitor - Classroom Monitor

"Through Pitching for Management, we found one of our core team in an evening. I can't think of another way this could possibly have happened so swiftly."

Steffan Aquarone, CEO, Droplet

Classroom Monitor - Classroom Monitor

Classroom Monitor - Classroom Monitor