Comments for Mind. your own. business school – a case study of a multi-sided platform Xoan-roi Gomez Marti 1 March 2016 The environment does not allow an exponential growth of users as the market is limited. Every year a small segment (“prospective Master students with a strong academic and professional background”) of users will replace the previous one how found a school. This means that the service provided by the platform could not be sufficient in order to keep previous…Read moreThe environment does not allow an exponential growth of users as the market is limited. Every year a small segment (“prospective Master students with a strong academic and professional background”) of users will replace the previous one how found a school. This means that the service provided by the platform could not be sufficient in order to keep previous members active during a long period. If a competitor enters into the market they will fight for the same market shares. By proposing different alternative or comparison they are differentiating them, but will that be enough? The main strength of the platform it’s the contact with several alumni, but will they be seen by the users as a reliable objective source of information? We could see MYBS as a platform providing informational publicity from the best business schools to futures students in order to attract a maximum of possible candidates. If we increase the number of schools promoted gradually and without decreasing the quality standards of the information, prospective students will probably perceive a better utility of information as they will have more choices trough a single platform. Relying on the classification of a single ranking even if in this case it’s the Financial Times could be perceived negatively. Other rankings could be taken into account like Forbes in order to increase the offers. By doing so the number of user could increase as the concentration of useful information is increasing too. At that point, the business schools already present will not feel the competition as strong as if the number of user has been the same during the expansion of school partners. The best option could be to increasing partnerships of quality with schools as the level of users increase in order to mitigate the negatives effects of competition. The number of users increasing will increase the network effect and by doing so the attractiveness of the platform for all the intermediaries. A market development may be the answer to this problem either by expanding the same platform to other regions or by adding new schools less well ranked into their platforms. Show less Reply Coeck Chesley 29 February 2016 Mind your own business school is one of the multiple multi-sided platforms existing on the internet. Others like Masterportal or Aringo provide the same services. Consequently, we can see a huge competition in the field of education. More precisely in the master area. Therefore, the principal issue of those platforms is to differentiate itself from the others in order to…Read moreMind your own business school is one of the multiple multi-sided platforms existing on the internet. Others like Masterportal or Aringo provide the same services. Consequently, we can see a huge competition in the field of education. More precisely in the master area. Therefore, the principal issue of those platforms is to differentiate itself from the others in order to attract more customers. MYBS needs to differentiate more itself to attract customers by different means. First, in a digital way, the platform should try to be more active on the social network (like LinkedIn) because more and more students think about their future master but begin also to build their own work professional network. A lot of students find their future master program by looking on the internet. Secondly, it is also important to be present and perceptible in a physical way by leaving to the universities some pamphlet or flyers to show that they actually exist because there exist a lot of information on the internet, and the customer could feel lost. To be more strategic, MYBS should try different things. First, the targeted customers of the platforms are mainly students looking for their master. As a matter of fact, the platform should provide the possibility to look for non-European school. When non-European school like HULT (located all over the world like USA, China, and United Kingdom …) are looking for new students, they will try to find “European” platform to attract them. Personally, I think that MYBS is right to focus on the highly reputed school because most of students want the possibility to put a high ranked school on their resume, which is more valuable for the future employer. Furthermore, having a comparison tool is a good idea allowing the undergraduate student to match their interest and the different schools. Finally, it could be interesting for MYBS to have an additional partnerships side with some famous international language test like the “Ielts” provided by the British Council or the “Gmat” by the graduate management admission council. It could grant them a trusty and serious angle really essential in the student research. References: http://www.mastersportal.eu/ https://aringo.com/ http://www.britishcouncil.be/ http://www.mba.com/global http://www.hult.edu Show less Reply Derek Cangiano 26 February 2016 I believe that MYBS has adapted itself reasonably well to the current competitive environment but I do believe it has other ways it can drive further user engagement to further strengthen its multi sided network effects. The choice to make the Users side the fully subsizised side of the platform was, in my view, clearly the right choice. as the…Read moreI believe that MYBS has adapted itself reasonably well to the current competitive environment but I do believe it has other ways it can drive further user engagement to further strengthen its multi sided network effects. The choice to make the Users side the fully subsizised side of the platform was, in my view, clearly the right choice. as the market of prospective business school students is much more fragmented as well as more likely to exhibit strong price elasticity, it makes a lot of sense to offer the service to these users for free, not unlike who Linkedin approaches their multi-sided model. I believe the future prospects for these sorts of services to be moderate overtime. As tuition rate increases among other factors have caused MBA admissions to decline over time , there will no doubt continue to be large amounts of students who chose to pursue business school at some point in their careers, and the ever increasing cost of the degree will make the search for the right program even more important to students. The other side of the platform will likely also continue to require this sort of engagement with prospective students as traditional MBA programs could be disrupted by online educational offerings as well as potential homogenization of the program offerings. I believe MYBS should absolutely add potential employers as an additional side of this platform. Employment possibilities post graduation would certainly be of interest to many if not all students interested in pursing business school and getting exposed to available opportunities with their MBA degree and what firms are looking for in candidates can only be of benefit to students in their search for the ideal program. It also creates value for employers as another tool to reach out to the best and brightest candidates earlier on than their relationships with business programs. Adding employers not only increases user engagement but provides another revenue channel for MYBS. I believe in the increasingly international world we occupy it would add significant value to the platform to add other MBA programs from around the globe. Restricting it to a certain geographic area is not the key value being provided, giving prospective students the right information that can be easily accessed is the key to the platform’s value, which the necessary information could very well be information on non European business schools. Gaining scale within the market category could also be a tool to prevent international services from entering and attempting to compete in European bschools as well. I believe this sort of service would work extremely well for other professional degrees, such as law schools (JD) due to the vast amount of program choices available as well as significant tuition fees required, having a resource to sort through the available options efficently (reducing search costs) is definitely something that could bring value to other degrees other than just MBAs. http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10000872396390444433504577651962999932518 Show less Reply Vandendriessche Elise 3 March 2015 I personally think that MYBS is well adapted to its competitive environment. They were able to implement into their platform several competitive constraints. For example, they thought about how to obtain the biggest profit and still maintain enough people in the several groups in order to maintain the network effects. Moreover, the fact that this platform is free for the…Read moreI personally think that MYBS is well adapted to its competitive environment. They were able to implement into their platform several competitive constraints. For example, they thought about how to obtain the biggest profit and still maintain enough people in the several groups in order to maintain the network effects. Moreover, the fact that this platform is free for the student is a competitive advantage. Indeed the competition is fierce in this specific sector which means that you need something that will distinguish yourself from the others. This particular platform has a unique approach and gives a real value to the master students by the fact that they avoid some time waste. The different prospects for MYBS are different kinds of diversification. One of this diversification could be gone by expanding themselves to a new market. Indeed a geographically expansion could be possible, there are several others markets possible in this sector. Another diversification could be done on the client segment. Instead of targeting only master students, MYBS could also target high school student or students who are looking for a job. The suggestion I would like to make to MYBS is to develop different platforms. Each platform would target the different students group they chose to focus on. Those different platforms would elude the potential problems that can emerge when you combine universities and firms, for example. It will also allow MYBS to focus on the balance between the different groups that will compose each platform. With this future strategy, it would be possible to expand its offer to non-European business schools, different degrees and different fields of study. Show less Reply David Suarez 3 March 2015 MYBS has benefited as a MSP by fulfilling an information gap in the market: business school search engine and comparison at the master level. When a bachelor student in business or related areas wants to extend his/her education path, he/she is faced with two traditional offers: MBA or master programs (each one with different characteristics, target market, requirements and so…Read moreMYBS has benefited as a MSP by fulfilling an information gap in the market: business school search engine and comparison at the master level. When a bachelor student in business or related areas wants to extend his/her education path, he/she is faced with two traditional offers: MBA or master programs (each one with different characteristics, target market, requirements and so on), and while for the former there is plenty of options providing this informative service (mba institute, bloomberg business, startclass etc) it is not the case for the latter. Addressing the issue of including employers as an additional side, I consider that MYBS do better by focusing on the academic side and limiting the inclusion of the employers as a sixth player. Reasons for this include the mentioned conflict of interest that could arise between the employers and the business schools (important source of income), lost of the already existing clear goal and objectives of the platform and unnecessary use of effort and resources to satisfy a probably small group of possible customers, i.e. recent graduates that are not sure about pursuing a master degree or starting their professional career and that already have access to platforms exclusively dedicated to the job search. Moreover, the decision of including the employers as an additional side would put MYBS at competition with existing and more experienced firms engaged in the matching of recent graduates and employers, therefore, MYBS would have to be in position of making attractive offers in order for employers to come and participate in their platform. MYBS would do better by enhancing its current business proposition, for example, on the business school side the company could not only include universities but also education companies dedicated to exam preparation (particularly GMAT but also language exams) or companies that offer advice and accompanying services during the whole application process; after all, in many cases, it is the application stage the crucial step when choosing a business school and not so much the student´s preferences/desires or suitability to the university. In fact, we see how some of the MBA search engines offer the possibility to filter universities according to GMAT or Toefl minimum score. Regarding the possible expansion of MYBS, we see how currently it already gives information of BS in different countries from the five continents. Although, the available information is not so extensive for universities in remote latitudes, it is a plus for students to have the possibility of having in mind a wider range of options. The inclusion of different degrees (Bachelor, MBA, PhD…) would also represent additional value for the same target market; however MYBS should be careful to maintain the user friendly platform they have today. Satisfied users at the entry level (Bachelor) are highly expected to be future users if they intend to pursue future education programs, thus addressing the challenge of not returning students. The same business model of MYBS could be replicated in different fields of study nonetheless I would recommend some kind of “sister” independent platforms (like Mind Your Law School and similar), this in order to preserve the strengths of the platform and to maintain the image of business students-focus. Finally, I think that MYBS can foster even more its key feature of the alumni section, for example by having a space of most frequently Q&A for each of the universities that offers additional important information as well as information related to less easy to measure aspects like campus life, extracurricular activities, and quality of the entry-level job offers. A way to stimulate active participation from alumni would be by highlighting their exposure and image within the site, so there would be some kind of prestige and pride in being part of the MYBS platform. One last recommendation would be the design of a proprietary MYBS index to assess and compare the quality of the programs so there would be a extra point of view other than that of the financial times ranking. Show less Reply Jean-Baptiste Dekegel 3 March 2015 As far as I’m concerned I think that the major prospects for MYBS are the students who just finished their bachelor degree in colleges of higher education as I did. Indeed, they are the less informed targets because of the lack of communication about possible master degree in these kind of schooling. Universities are very concerned about exchange programs and…Read moreAs far as I’m concerned I think that the major prospects for MYBS are the students who just finished their bachelor degree in colleges of higher education as I did. Indeed, they are the less informed targets because of the lack of communication about possible master degree in these kind of schooling. Universities are very concerned about exchange programs and master degree abroad and make really good communication on that but it is unfortunately not the case elsewhere. Accordingly, targeting these students would be very effective and probably direct more students towards universities in Belgium or abroad. We can see now that there is a huge trend in digital marketing and the efficiency of these practices are really proven. That’s why I suggest to MYBS to focus on these channels that are really in the heart of the daily life of every students. A collaboration between MYBS and Colleges of higher education could even be imagined in order to reach the target even better. Alumni could just go during 10 minutes in the beginning of a lecture to talk about the company and the project. It could be a win-win solution: students have an external person talking about entrepreneurship and business and on the other side the company make a kind of indirect advertising. The employers shouldn’t be included in the platforms because they are the biggest competitor to a master degree. I have seen many fellow students applying for a job after obtaining bachelor degree just to see the kind of job available for them. The majority finally let their ambition for a master degree aside in regard to the money they can earn with those contracts. Involving future employers can really be harmful for the business schools and in fine causes the fact that they are avoiding your platform for that specific reason. Furthermore, if business schools are avoiding your platform, it’s the end of the two-sided platform. On the other side, involving companies with the willing of offering internship programs or even projects of master thesis may be really value-creative for a future student. This program could be a solution to the conflict of interest that I’ve spoken of but must be watched very closely by MYBS. In regard of the fierce competition that this platform can arise, I would go for a focusing on the business schools and the master degree as far as MYBS is concerned. Indeed, if they are focusing on a niche market, they can have a strong brand image and be very well positioned in the head of the students. Show less Reply Sluyters william 3 March 2015 Through my comment I'll try to answer some questions asked at the end of the article. * Should MYBS include employers as an additional side? My opinion is that MYBS should not include employers as an additional side. In addition to the reasons listed in the article I will highlight 3 points in favour of not include employers as an additional…Read moreThrough my comment I’ll try to answer some questions asked at the end of the article. * Should MYBS include employers as an additional side? My opinion is that MYBS should not include employers as an additional side. In addition to the reasons listed in the article I will highlight 3 points in favour of not include employers as an additional side. Firstly, most of the universities already have partnerships with employers. If you include employers you will decrease the value of these partnerships. It will lead to the decrease of the value proposition to both universities and employers. Secondly, add employers will change the brand image and it’s hard to predict if this change will be positive or negative. Nonetheless, if you add employers you will have to change the name “MYBS” which is likely to cost a lot. Eventually, it will be difficult to select which employers could be in the additional side. It’s quite easy to select university because they all have the same purpose (provide the best education path) and MYBS just have to chose in a ranking list to be sure of the quality of the universities and it will fit the expectations of the students. It’s far more difficult to do it with employers because you would have to decide which criteria will be used to select the companies. Maybe those criteria won’t fit the students’s expectations. * Should the platform expand its offer to non-European business schools, different degrees (Bachelor, PhD) or different fields of study? In order to know if MYBS should expand its offer to non-European business school it should be interesting to know more about the possible fallouts of a launch on the non-European market. In order to do so, an extensive study about competition, interest of students and universities should be conducted. Then MYBS would have to evaluate the gain of such an expansion. At first glance, I’d say that one day MYBS will have to expand its field of activity to non-European business schools. Indeed, distance is decreasing everyday with the development of new technologies, the markets globalisation and the mobility of students all around the world, MYBS will not be able to stay competitive if it doesn’t expand its offer to non-European business schools. Extend the platform to bachelors seems difficult. First of all, students may be more reluctant to the idea of studying abroad. They may be not sure of the studies that they want to do. The value of abroad bachelors may be seen with a lower value because it’s mainly about theory learnings and there are Exchange possibilities which are less constraining when students are only entering into studies. Finally, what about universities don’t want to draw Bachelor students? At first sight the extension of the platform to PhD doesn’t seems a good idea. In fact the number of students in PhD may not be great enough to cover the cost of extending the platform. Besides, add something else could complicate the website, as for the bachelors what about Universities don’t want to draw PhD students? In my view an extension to other fields may not be as interesting as it seems. In my opinion the main points are: First, the website’s name wouldn’t be correct anymore, which means that it would be necessary to advertise which represents a huge cost. Secondly, Business is a broad field of study and interaction between different countries can leverage a huge amount of relevant knowledge to manage multicultural companies and globalisation ’s consequences. It’s not the case for all the fields, then the value proposition concerning other fields will be lower and it will not attract as many students. Finally the university ranking may not be the same for all fields and it will bring a new problem in the selection of universities. * Or is its focus on a restricted set of reputed business schools and their Master programs its key asset? Through what I discussed above I’ve tried to answer this question. My opinion is that the focus on a restricted set of business schools and their Master programs is the key asset of MYBS. Nonetheless, one day or another the platforms will have to extend on a international level because of the globalisation. Show less Reply De Kort Charlotte 3 March 2015 Concerning the future strategy I think it would be a great idea for the MYBS to also include non-European business schools. This for the reason that they want to be as inclusive as possible and want to provide students with accurate and detailed information about possible business schools to attend. This means that if they want to make it easier…Read moreConcerning the future strategy I think it would be a great idea for the MYBS to also include non-European business schools. This for the reason that they want to be as inclusive as possible and want to provide students with accurate and detailed information about possible business schools to attend. This means that if they want to make it easier for master students to find information, they could improve their service by including also the non-European business schools. A second reason why I think this would be a good idea is that they mention that the business schools on their site should be in the top 70 ranking of the Financial Times. However as there are some top universities based in America I find it rather logical to also include them. Also the highly motivated students that are visiting this platform could be interested in these business schools as well (because of their ranking). Another argument to include the non-European business schools is that it is quite difficult to find information about them and there are more procedures and paper work to complete for a non-European business school. In my opinion it would really benefit the students to have these information as well on the platform. Concerning making the platform available for different degrees, I think this could be relevant for the third bachelors that want to already start there master in another school or that want to search early for a business school. For the non-European business schools I think it would be quite an advantage as the bachelor students can already start looking and searching for information (because of the length and amount of procedures required). I do think it is not so useful to make the platform available for first and second year bachelors because it is less likely that they will already be interested in this kind of information. For PHD students it could also be interesting because maybe they want to do some research abroad. Also if they liked the platform system they could possibly become future alumni. I do not think that the inclusion of another side, employees, would be a great idea. I argue this because than the platform will create a lot of competition (because some students will want choose to work in stead of going to a business school). I do also think that the platform needs to stick with its key asset; providing information about business schools. If they are giving to much information they could become less efficient and less useful for the students because there would just be too much information. Another student mentioned it would be a good idea to include companies for offering internships during the student his/her education. This I do find a good idea that would maybe benefit the platform and is in line with their strategy. Concerning the prospects of MYBS I think that it would be highly requested and because business schools are becoming very popular and more people have the money to attend one. With the Internet and all information that is on it, this platform will keep being, if not becoming more useful, to gather information quickly, talk to alumni and find the right information in one place. Show less Reply Marine Malherbe 3 March 2015 To begin I would like to give my point of view on the future prospects of MYBS. I think this platform have a good chance to become popular in the business world. But in order to reach this popularity and a reputation for quality, they really have to put forward the fact that only top universities and business schools have…Read moreTo begin I would like to give my point of view on the future prospects of MYBS. I think this platform have a good chance to become popular in the business world. But in order to reach this popularity and a reputation for quality, they really have to put forward the fact that only top universities and business schools have access to the platform. They must point out the ranking of each business school in the classification of the Financial Times. I would then recommend focus the strategy on this specific argument. Concerning the question of including employers as an additional side, I would like to make some suggestions. In my opinion, it would be a good ting to have employers included on the platform. First of all employers could help prospective master students in their choices by providing comments on different masters. Comments based on the competences of alumni that they have hired just after their master. So the idea is that companies would have access to the platform only if they have hired students graduated from one of the business school member of the platform. It would provide prospective master students additional information concerning the quality of each master. I insist on the fact that these employers will not be there to hired students interest by doing a master. They will only provide testimonials to prospective students. Then what would be the advantage for these companies to become members of the platform? My idea is to create an additional offer to those companies. I think it could be interesting to create a new section on the platform. This section would also be multi-sided. The first side would be companies having hired students graduated from member business schools and ready to hire new ones because of their satisfaction. The second side would be graduated master students from member business schools looking for a job. This section would then help the graduated in their employment search. To summarize, the member companies of the platform would first of all provide information to prospective master students on the different business schools and secondly offer jobs to graduated students. This is a first suggestion of expend in the offer of the platform. Let’s now turn on the other possibilities the platform has to expend her offer. I my eyes, the idea to give access to non-European business school is not bad. Of course this access must be restricted and authorized only to top quality business schools. This selection should therefore also be based on a deemed ranking. As I said above, the platform has to focus her strategy on the top quality of the member business schools. On the other hand I don’t think including bachelor degrees would be a good idea, it wouldn’t make sense with the presence of employers on the platform. Moreover, I have the feeling that it would reduce the reputation for high quality of the platform. Show less Reply Rafael Moreira 2 March 2015 I would like to point out some specific questions for comments: • On a more general note, in your eyes, what are the prospects for MYBS? Competition in the marketplace for education is fierce and it will need to differentiate themselves and seek relationships with other distribution channels. Spending on digital marketing start to increase a lot, and there are many competitors that…Read moreI would like to point out some specific questions for comments: • On a more general note, in your eyes, what are the prospects for MYBS? Competition in the marketplace for education is fierce and it will need to differentiate themselves and seek relationships with other distribution channels. Spending on digital marketing start to increase a lot, and there are many competitors that mimic the initial idea of MYBS. It is vital to have a vision that overflows the existence of the platform and the confidence that the use of social networks to attract interested customers ensure the long-term sustainability of the business model. • Do you have any suggestions in terms of its future strategy? Looking at the recent movement of American universities in order to attract students from developing countries to pursue their postgraduate programs, the strategy turns to partnerships with digital media agencies in the target markets. A student of Brazil or Colombia would be very interested in better understand and interact with an appropriate language to your culture rather than just access the university website in the US or Canada. Knowing this, especially the lesser-known programs of studies (TOP 50), good communication directed to the public of these markets becomes vital in increasing the number of applicants and consequently accepted students. I can cite the case of Arizona State University (ASU), which promoted an extensive digital marketing campaign using a reputable Brazilian agency that has developed a strategy of targeting the Brazilian right audience, with great success in filling vacancies for ASU in the academic year 2014. That is, an additional side in the platform would be a partnership with digital marketing agencies in the target countries. • Currently, the main source of revenue are so-called MYBS business school fairs. The business model is not scalable pricing here. There is a problem between the structuring of a business with “offline” revenues making it difficult to cash generation and future growth of the business. If there is the inclusion of the side of the digital marketing agency, because of the high margins on MBAs, it would be possible to build additional revenues linked to success in increasing the number of applicants and enrolled students. Thus universities could see the performance of MYBS as a propaganda generator (doing marketing efficiently), and you could take advertising revenues currently paid by these universities to more inefficient channels (such as business magazines or low credibility ads on Google). Remembering that the marginal cost of carrying out such digital marketing campaigns tends to zero, beyond what you can segment the market of universities offering selectively implementing these approaches with the public in the target market, pricing the universities differently as you have success cases. • What is more, should the platform expand its offer to non-European business schools, different degrees (Bachelor, PhD) or different fields of study? By studying the case of MYBS I realize that the main asset of the platform for its consumers is serve as a “bridge” for students to know more about the MBA courses, expanding the set of applicants for these vacancies. In this case, as the MBAs are so courses of higher profit margin that universities have, I believe not worth it include undergraduate courses, or even areas far away from the core administration-finance-management. By extending for undergraduate courses you will face with a big problem seems selectivity, hindering the user (one side of platform) to access the relevant information. There will be a great offer of courses in space engineering to biology, which does not contribute to growth in profitability your business model. Instead, your costs will increase to manage multiple channels, and the final report for your consumers will be poor. Another point is the gratuity of undergraduate courses in several countries, which does not help with the business vision. However, I believe that there is an area that MYBS could include: Master of Public Administration (MPA). There is a growth in the number of MPA courses, and several governments fund these programs as executive courses inclusive. Usually professionals have the resources to pay the MPA, in addition to many governments fund these programs. • Or is its focus on a restricted set of reputed business schools and their Master programs its key asset? Because you do not want to turn into a MOOC, the business model should be based on platform and focused digital media. Therefore, you should certainly act with the greatest possible number of universities in different countries, seeking to make the “cross-selling” of portfolios in different regions of the world. Attract students from emerging countries to universities in developed countries is a goal. Betting on the reverse flow is also a good idea as there are increasing number of students require experience in countries where there will be new opportunities in the future. In this case, just by having the data and the “mindset” of students in different markets, you will benefit from network effects for seeking these cross offers courses in different regions of the world. Show less Reply Paul Belleflamme 3 March 2015 Very instructive, thanks. Lowyck Marie 1 March 2015 First of all, MYBS is a good example to illustrate the multi-sided platforms. Indeed, we understand directly the importance of the participant groups. In this case, the three conditions necessary to have a MSP are met. The MYBS has adopted a good strategy because it considers the highest price sensibility, so that the student can visit the page free…Read moreFirst of all, MYBS is a good example to illustrate the multi-sided platforms. Indeed, we understand directly the importance of the participant groups. In this case, the three conditions necessary to have a MSP are met. The MYBS has adopted a good strategy because it considers the highest price sensibility, so that the student can visit the page free and the advertisers and business schools are on the money side. As we read in the article, actually, there are five groups but is it a good idea to create a sixth group, the employers ? The fact to add this branch of actors can increase the trust of the students, confirm the reputation and the credibility of the website if the employers are worldwide known. But we need to pay attention to the competition. Indeed, the employers could generate competition with the business schools and attract students after their bachelor. In order to avoid some competition between the two groups, we can imagine that the employers offer internships in their companies during the master. This method increases the visibility of the company but does not introduce competition because the master and thus the business schools are necessary for the student to access to the stage in the company. This package allows also the student to have a good experience in the working world and to learn about the company and maybe be engaged within later. Concerning the alumni, it is important to keep them motivated. But I think that an alumni is always motivated by nature. To speak about their master can increase its popularity, and acquire a better ranking. Sharing his experience is always pleasant. It is necessary to create a community of alumni, for comments on the site, to give advices but also to give a reason to come back on the website after their studies. Concerning the business schools, I think that it is very important to keep the number of them limited in order to work only with renowned schools. This makes the specificity, the key asset of the website but also his credibility. But I think that offering other opportunities outside Europe can be a plus for the website. Indeed, we live in a world where travelling is very important and still in development. Teens are more and more motivated to study abroad and to discover other cultures. Therefore, we can also use a worldwide ranking to put the best business schools in the world. This technique will increase the competition but in this case, it is a beneficial competition and it will increase the level of masters and thus also the website. For me, the website should stay on the idea of business schools and not expand their offer to different fields because it is their primary field, they have experience and credibility in it. It is not possible to have to know every field and to be efficient in all of them. Actually, trust is very important for the platform. MYBS has the trust of the students but only in the business field. Losing the trust means losing students and credibility, so they need to focus on business. Finally, about bachelors, I think that it is an opportunity for the website. Actually, the website offers renowned masters, but to access to these masters, the students have to be prepared and have high skills. So, it should be interesting to develop a part on the site for the bachelors in order to prepare them better for their masters. Of course, the different programs should be chosen at the basis level in order to be able to access to the master offered later. The competition should not increase because they are often the same schools that offer bachelors and masters. On the other hand, this increasing of programs could improve the revenues of the site without disturbing the quality. Show less Reply Joseph Abi-Khalil 1 March 2015 Nowadays, Business schools are not only institutions with a goal of educating young people but it became a business itself. If we look at the education of the top firms’ CEOs in the world we could notice that most of them attended one of the top business schools and sometimes during the same year which also makes the business school…Read moreNowadays, Business schools are not only institutions with a goal of educating young people but it became a business itself. If we look at the education of the top firms’ CEOs in the world we could notice that most of them attended one of the top business schools and sometimes during the same year which also makes the business school a powerful networking tool. Concerning MYBS, I think it is a powerful tool that gives a real image of how life would be if you attend one of these business schools (in terms of cost of living, classes…). However, in terms of future strategy, I believe that an increase in competition could benefit all sides. Indeed, the platform could also be an intermediary that reveals which school is best suited for a certain kind of master. For example, if we take the rankings of business schools we notice that we can find also sub-rankings for the different masters. School A could be ranked behind school B on average but could surpass school B in the marketing master. Thus, students interested in marketing would opt for school A instead of B. This form of designed track would make students more aware of the reputation that a school has in a certain master, and on the other hand would make all schools invest in their programs (bringing new teachers or famous speakers) in order to beat competition and attract more students. This will have a positive consequence on the overall level of education since all schools would have a strong incentive to be the best in all masters. In terms of geographical strategy, the platform could open up to non-European business schools which will generate higher value for the platform. Indeed, if we look at the ratings for business schools we see that there is a strong presence of American business schools in the top tier. Thus, it will reduce the asymmetry of information existing between European students and American business school, indeed living on another continent makes it hard to assess the real cost of living and all the fees that a student would need. Moreover, given that American business schools have other criteria than European ones; this initiative will not create competition between both regions. However, the platform would need to change the tools that it’s using to evaluate the schools (cost of living, fees…) in order to have a good tool of comparison between the US type of living and the EU one. Finally, the level of users using the platform is an important component. Indeed, the company would want that the people using the platform to comeback after choosing their studies. In order to do that, the platform could open up for Bachelor entrant students, which will increase the mass of users and would make these students comeback on the platform to choose their masters. Or, the platform could also include a new side on their platform, for example real estate companies. As a user, you would be able to compare prices for student apartments and choose the suited rent (with the suited real estate company) and if you would want to change your apartment after one year you would come back on the platform to do so. This will increase the critical mass of users and would make the platform a powerful of describing the real needs for the student. A last remark would be to extend the ratings source; indeed we can find different relevant ratings other than the Financial Times which will give a better image of the different business schools since students would be able to compare the results of the different ratings on MYBS. To conclude, increased competition between business schools can benefit all sides, an expansion in geographical dimensions would bring value to the platform and finally extend the number of sides interacting in the platform would increase the traffic. Show less Reply Heijmans Gaëtan 28 February 2015 All the business schools have the same objective: ‘attract the most motivated and strongest students’. To get both sides on board the MYBS ‘’have to give to the critical mass of users the service for free’’ (Evans, 2003). This free entrance allows MYBS to compete with all the other professional multi-sided platforms which also offer generally the entrance for free…Read moreAll the business schools have the same objective: ‘attract the most motivated and strongest students’. To get both sides on board the MYBS ‘’have to give to the critical mass of users the service for free’’ (Evans, 2003). This free entrance allows MYBS to compete with all the other professional multi-sided platforms which also offer generally the entrance for free to the students such as Linkedin. MYBS have also to attract business school and even if they are competitor’s schools on the multi-sided platform the advantage of visibility compenses the ‘disadvantage’ of the number of competitors. It is clearly an advantage for the business school only if they are enough students on the platform. I think that MYBS cannot be more adapted to its competitive environment. I think that the prospects for MYBS are to attract a different kind of students and business schools. Indeed the students who ended the high school are looking for a bachelor’s programs and the business who offers these programs have to be known. MYBS should not include employers as an additional side. It would increase the competition between business schools and employers and change the main goal of the MYBS. I think it would be better to make another multi-sided platform for employers. Indeed this platform will be promote to the students who are already or not registered in MYBS and who are in a Master Cursus. These strategy will decrease a little the ‘no-return’ students from the platform. In conclusion the future strategy of MYBS should be to enter into all the student life from the moment they are looking to a bachelor’s program to the moment they are looking for a job. Show less Reply Paul Belleflamme 13 June 2014 And here is a summary of the thoughts of Charles Van Haverbeke (founder of MyBS): Challenges (currently) faced by MYBS: * How to incentivise the alumni to act as a contact person for their business school? So far alumni do not derive a clear benefit from their participation on MYBS. This is a crucial point as the presence of alumni is one…Read moreAnd here is a summary of the thoughts of Charles Van Haverbeke (founder of MyBS): Challenges (currently) faced by MYBS: * How to incentivise the alumni to act as a contact person for their business school? So far alumni do not derive a clear benefit from their participation on MYBS. This is a crucial point as the presence of alumni is one of the key assets of MYBS. * Students, after successfully applying to a business school, have no reason to return to MYBS. * Currently, the main source of revenue are so-called MYBS business school fairs. Those events serve to promote MYBS and the featured business schools. Future strategy: * Extend the offer of MYBS to MBA’s (up) and/or Summer Schools and Bachelor programs (down). “Probably ‘up’ is where the money is but ‘down’ is a similar and more condensed target group. MBA promotion happens in a very fragmented audience and might only be possible if we extend our team”. * Include a (separate) job offering page. This would imply a shift in the focus of MYBS from purely academic to career in a broader sense. Here the founder(s) of MYBS consider it crucial to avoid a too intense competition between companies and business schools, in particular as the original focus of MYBS is academic. * Adding additional features to the search mask (proximity of business school location to other cities of interest, public transportation system, accommodation (prices and offerings)). Show less Reply Paul Belleflamme 13 June 2014 Here is the reaction that IPdigIT got from Charles Van Haverbeke, the founder of MyBS: "I feel honored that you devoted a case study to our project myBS. Thank you very much for getting back to me with the results and insights. I will go through your findings and come back with feedback from my side. Also a big thanks to…Read moreHere is the reaction that IPdigIT got from Charles Van Haverbeke, the founder of MyBS: “I feel honored that you devoted a case study to our project myBS. Thank you very much for getting back to me with the results and insights. I will go through your findings and come back with feedback from my side. Also a big thanks to your students for the significant effort they put in their research.” Show less Reply Leave a Reply Cancel replyYour email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment You may use simple HTML tags to add links or lists to your comment:<a href="url">link</a> <ul><li>list item 1</li><li>list item2</li></ul> <em>italic</em> <strong>bold</strong>Name * Email * Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Notify me by email when the comment gets approved.