Slideroom: Full of Features, High Price

Collecting and evaluating applications – open calls, admittance to a university, portfolios – can be a cumbersome task, only exacerbated by tools poorly suited to the job. The web offers many powerful form platforms. However, most only allow the administrator to create forms and collect the data; they lack internal evaluation functions and applicant checkpoints. This is where Slideroom excels: it offers an entire cloud-based application experience to collect and evaluate prospective applicants. But with plans starting at $500, it may price out many not for profit and small organizations.

Slideroom was founded in 2006 after its founders realized there was a need for a more inclusive product – one that can manage an application from beginning to end. Since then, the company has built an impressive client base including Carnegie Mellon, Stanford, and Autodesk. Although many higher education institutions use the platform, it is also well suited for arts-centric organizations and for purposes including exhibit proposals, artist residencies, and competitions. A live demo offered an opportunity for Josh Miller, a representative of Slideroom, to explain the platform’s offerings. 

Simple but full of features

Slideroom’s interface provides a very elegant and straightforward system for both administrators and applicants. Administrators can create their forms through a simple drag and drop system, and used advanced features such as skip logic in their creation. Applicants are able to monitor the status of their submission. Additionally, Slideroom is available on mobile devices for applicants and reviewers alike, and features a streamlined touchscreen interface well suited to the platform.

Video showing the capabilities of Slideroom for mobile

Expensive

Standard pricing starts at $500/yr, and allows administrators to collect only form-based applications. On top of this, each submission has a minimum $5 fee – either paid for by the organization or applicant. Charging artists may violate the mission of some not-for-profits, so in such cases the fee would then fall on the organization. Access to advanced features such as portfolio upload capabilities can  cost an additional $600/yr. Want to have multiple forms open at once? Add $250 to $1,000. Slideroom’s prices quickly skyrocket, suggesting it may be best suited to organizations with a healthy budget.

Completely customizable

Organizations can place personal branding on its Slideroom site so that potential applicants know they are in the right place. The platform can also collect a wide array of file formats for images, videos, documents, 3D models, and audio, making Slideroom suitable for any artistic discipline.

  Screenshot from Slideroom demo

Screenshot from Slideroom demo

Collaborative Workspace

Reviewers have the ability to rate and leave comments on applications. Other reviewers and administrators can see and add to these evaluations, encouraging a collective decision making process. Real-time communication though the platform is not currently an option, but would further improve the experience. To learn more about the review process, watch the short video below.

A brief overview of evaluation features in SlideRoom: Highlighting, Commenting, Rating, Tagging, and Status.

Verdict

Despite its steep price tag, Slideroom is an exceptional product for organizations that want a straightforward, cloud-based application system to provide panel-based evaluation of creative submissions. With its beautiful and intuitive design, Slideroom can fit the needs of most arts organizations that collect applications or proposals. A great deal of thought went into the features and design features, so organization concerned with quality will not be disappointed.