By Chris Aviles
https://the3rdquote.com ■ Retail Price: Free to schools. Free (while building the community) for providers.
3rd Quote aims to be a matchmaker for schools looking to purchase edtech. On 3rd Quote, schools can research and get price quotes for edtech, read and leave reviews of products and providers using the report card feature, and, once they’ve found the tech they want, schools can use 3rd Quote to find the provider that best fits their needs. Every step of the process, from brainstorming to ordering, can be done using 3rd Quote’s powerful Web site.
Quality and Effectiveness: 3rd Quote has thought of everything a school might need to do when thinking about purchasing edtech. I was most impressed with the “Budget” section of the site. In the budget area, stakeholders can collaborate and create an actionable list of steps to turn their edtech wish list into reality. Schools can compare providers and pricing, create budget proposals, and issue requests to providers—all while tracking the steps in the budget section’s checklist feature.
Ease of Use: 3rd Quote really shines when it comes to ease of use. The site is well made and responsive. It is clear that a lot of time went into making the site easy to navigate and a lot of thought was put into considering what schools would need to improve their purchasing experience.
Creative Use of Technology: In addition to looking great, 3rd Quote has come up with a clever way to protect schools from overzealous providers. 3rd Quote has a built-in messaging system, similar to that of Facebook, which protects a school’s privacy from providers. Schools can contact providers with questions while keeping their contact information private. All school-vendor interaction happens through this system, which makes it much more pleasant than the heavy-handed sales emails I often receive.
Suitability for Use in a School Environment: I can see a school transition smoothly from the usual fractured process of purchasing edtech to the one-stop shop of 3rd Quote. I especially enjoyed the site’s features that allowed me to easily share information with my team members.
As the 3rd Quote user base continues to grow, it will get better and better. The site is well made, and 3rd Quote’s vision for improving the school tech-buying experience is excellent.
• 3rd Quote has a 21st-century vision for making the edtech buying experience efficient,
informed, and effective.
• The curation of product and provider reviews in one area is easy to use and useful.
• 3rd Quote streamlines communication between schools and providers while
protecting the privacy of schools.