What I’ve learned: Find a product that makes a difference.

Equipment Ask business people what they have learned over the years from their business, and what they will do differently.

Husband and wife Emma and Mark Blake are the founders of SafetyNest, a software service that digitally informs Early Childhood Education (ECE) Center staff about the dangers of children in incidents, accidents and their care. Helps to record.

The first call system was CloudMe Staff, a digital health and safety service. Since their first child had had a major accident, Emma and Mark were signing dozens of incident reports on the system. He then came up with the idea of ​​reusing software for early childhood centers.

First developed in 2017, Safety Nest is currently being used in 70 ECE centers across the country. Emma Blake spoke. Equipment About what he learned along the way.

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1. What inspired you to come up with an idea for your business?

We launched a product for small and medium-sized businesses in New Zealand called CloudMe staff that we still run.

The first industry we focused on was transportation and logistics, because that’s what we felt we knew almost inside and out.

Emma Blake says the key to success is to find something that will make a difference in customers' lives.


Emma Blake says the key to success is to find something that will make a difference in customers’ lives.

But when our two children came along, we quickly realized how much paperwork it takes to keep children safe in elementary school.

Especially because of the risk-averse and somewhat accident-prone daughter, we had to look at how much paperwork and time goes into compliance with education.

To develop Safety Nest, we worked with amazing preschool owners who went to our girls.

Our overall goal was to help take on these admin heavy tasks and make them easier and more automated, so that teachers and teachers don’t overburden.

It gives them more time to do what they do there, to teach, and to help us grow.

2. What lessons did you learn in those early years?

In the early years, we learned that we needed to change our business model as well as our tools so that we could meet the needs of our customers.

Especially with Safety Nest, the Ministry of Education, auditors, parents and employers all wanted different things. So we need to find the right balance to meet the expectations of these different stakeholders.

3. Where was the biggest challenge to get your business up and running today?

Balancing business growth with a growing family.

Our daughters are less than a year away, and we started our own business shortly after the birth of our first daughter.

On the other hand, it meant that since then we have come to the forefront of other family-related industries faster than we probably have. This gave us the opportunity to move on to more niche products than we could ever imagine.

Moving beyond the SME market for business was never part of our initial plan or concept. And while we will continue to create separate products for this market, the differences we are making at ECE centers across the country have made us anxious to expand further.

As our girls have grown, we have created apps that will continue to follow them through the education system as we learn more about each stage.

We are very involved in the education sector – from working with the Ministry of Education and auditors to school boards, and working with industry leaders to guide us in the right direction.

4. Now you know what you wished you knew earlier in your career?

You don’t have to work in big corporations to make a difference or what we wanted to do.

We also don’t understand how difficult it is to be a business owner sometimes, and to create another layer of complexity in our lives.

I wish we had the importance of talking to people who know who they’re talking about when we started, and finding people whose values ​​are important to you and your business. Work together

Another important thing is to make sure you do your own research on what people want and want, but focus on the problem you can solve.

This is great if you can get a really cool, fancy looking product. But if it doesn’t matter or doesn’t add value to your customers, go out and find something you like.

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