Follow the Funding to Your Next ‘Gig’

Jobs & Careers

Follow the Funding to Your Next ‘Gig’

By Shelby Adkisson     Apr 2, 2018

Follow the Funding to Your Next ‘Gig’

This article is part of the guide: EdSurge’s Guide to Landing a Job (or Finding the Perfect Candidate) .

What do the edtech funding trends of the past two years, namely 2016 and 2017, mean for passive and active job seekers?

2016 was the first time in five years that we saw a drop in US funding in the K-12 edtech: In 2015, investments rose to $1.4B. A year later, they fell back to $1 billion. In 2017, investments rose again—suggesting that 2015 might have been an unusual peak year. Even so, the number of investments in 2017 was lower, reflecting that investors were putting more money into a smaller number of organizations. (See graph below).

Edtech Deal Volume (2011-2017)
Source: EdSurge

Location Trends

It comes as no surprise that startups in California and New York reaped the largest share of investments in the past year, with those in Florida and Massachusetts not far behind. Boston is a known tech hub and the Florida-based Hero K12 raised $150M through BV Investments in 2017 to expand its suite of products.

US Edtech Funding Total by State (2017)

Role Type Trends (And Seniority Level)

While the seniority level breakdown for funded companies in 2017 was aligned with the overall pattern of all companies that posted to the EdSurge jobs board, there’s a clear difference when it comes to role types that freshly funded companies are seeking.

Companies funded in 2017:

  1. Sales
  2. Customer Success / Implementation
  3. Engineering
  4. Marketing
  5. Operations / Product Management (tied)

Overall companies in 2017:

  1. Sales
  2. Teaching
  3. Product Management
  4. Marketing
  5. Operations

Companies that received funding in 2017 were looking to fill open roles in customer success and implementation. While the ideal background for these roles can vary widely, many companies are seeking customer success managers who have spent time in classrooms. That's good news, after all, who better relates to customers than someone who’s implemented tech tools in class!?

So, who’s hiring? How can I get ahead?

2017 saw the continual rise of curriculum products, including EverFi ($190M) and Grammarly ($110M). International companies, particularly those in China, are also coming to the forefront. Among them: organizations employing educators in part-time roles, including China’s VIPKID ($200M), as well as tutoring-focused companies (Yuanfandao, Liulishuo, and Xuebajun to name a few!). Keeping a finger on the pulse of who raised what this past year—and which companies are catching the eyes of investors in 2018–as you think about leveling up in your career is crucial.

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