Wicked Copters is an Australia-based training provider for Remotely Piloted Aircraft. Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) approved, Wicked Copters provides training in-person and online. With textbooks around 300 pages each, the costs for printing were immense. Delivery times to remote regions in Australia took up to fourteen days. After signing with Kotobee, Wicked Copters cut publication costs by 35% and pilots received secured access to textbooks instantly.

We interviewed Andrew Rapson of Wicked Copters to learn how Kotobee Library cut costs, improved intellectual property security, and eliminated delivery wait-times.

The Challenge

What challenges did Wicked Copters face prior to using Kotobee?

Wicked Copters, on average, has been delivering training to around 700 pilots a year of which a large number elected to do online studying. The biggest issue we faced was the cost of printing. The textbooks we wrote for the training course are around 300 pages each. Since moving to an electronic system we have been able to reduce the number of printed textbooks.

The second was delivery times for our online students. Australia is a vast country but the majority of the population is around the capital cities. This means that postage can take up to 14 days to arrive for more remote locations if Air Freight is not possible. Now, through the Kotobee API, the textbooks are instant.

What other options did you explore?

We initially explored a protected PDF, however, this was not as secure for our intellectual property as we liked. It also relied on access to a third party application to view.

Our nice-to-have features included annotations/notes as well as offline support.

Through the Kotobee System, we have been able to deliver the textbooks instantly (with user management) and the pilots can access the textbooks offline and make notes/annotations.

The Solution

How did you hear about Kotobee?

Several of our staff had backgrounds with Javelin, Adobe and iBooks/eBooks. With all these systems, they in part had some of the features but didn't work well for us during our testing. iBooks required us to redevelop our textbooks and are distributed externally without control of who can get it, while Javelin was difficult to use and Adobe was reliant on Adobe reader.

We came across Kotobee on a web search and had never heard of the platform before. Within a few days, we had several long discussions with a number of Kotobee Staff, live demonstrations and every question we could think of the team had a solution for us.

What drove you to choose Kotobee?

Ultimately the choice to work with Kotobee was due to the help and support of everyone at Kotobee. Other vendors we explored at the time had layers of support which took a long time to get help.

We found that the Kotobee Platform to be very customizable from the book level to the branded applications.

How difficult was the onboarding process with Kotobee, transitioning from an older system?

We did not have an electronic system yet and was moving from our printed material over. From installing the Kotobee Author software to having our own branded application published was easy.

Is there a particular aspect of Kotobee that you rely on the most?

The Cloud Library (for hosting and user access) and the customized applications on mobile, tablet and desktop. It also integrates with our Learning Management System via LTI.

Has Kotobee's support team been there for you when you needed them?

Most certainly. From support through to management, every time we had a question regardless of the time of day we got a detailed email back within several hours. Fairly often they have been available after hours for us.

There have been virtually no outages with the Kotobee System and when there were any issues Kotobee would send a message keeping us in the loop.

The Results

Has Kotobee played a role in attracting new customers?

When a pilot wanting to study online, their first question is always when do they get access. With the Kotobee Platform (and the API) this is virtually instant.

In what ways was your competitive advantage enhanced?

By moving to Kotobee we have been able to reduce cost in printing but more importantly, we are able to deliver textbooks instantly. Being a digital textbook, we can publish updates (which are version controlled) to everyone without needing to reprint pages and post out.

The Future

What are Wicked Copter's plans for the future?

CASA has released an updated syllabus for the course and we are about to update our books again. Over the past 2 years since we first released our books, we are remaking them with more of the interactive content that Kotobee offers.

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