Emelie Andersson - Retent
Blog post #1
Describe the idea!
Through research about psychological factors influencing employee retention we want to create a service to help knowledge intensive organisations get better control of and knowledge about what influences their employee retention. Retentio provides a service to map and measure strengths and weaknesses within organizations with regards to factors influencing employees intent to stay at their workplace. Our first target group is professional service organisations where most part of the employees are consultants working either in house, from home or at customers offices. These organizations face major challenges with knowing how aligned the consultant are with the company and due to high demand and competition between companies, valuable is easily lost to other consulting firms. We mainly focus on work environment, job satisfaction and organizational embeddedness to improve the knowledge about what can help keep valuable workforce in the organization. The main focuses of our service is goal alignment, values, work benefits and social relations at work.
Who are you?
I just graduated from the psychologist programme at Lund university. I wrote my masters thesis about employee retention. I’ve worked part time with giving talks to different companies about how changing the organizational climate can help improve innovation, team learning and social work environment. Ever since upper secondary school I´ve always been involved with different creative projects, some of them self initiated. What I enjoy the most is combining my interest in psychology with my interest in culture and art which has resulted in many different projects involving everything from musicals and photo exhibitions to up-cycling projects and interior design.
What will you do during these three months? How will you spend the time?
During the Leapfrogs project me and my project partner will do customer research by contacting possible customers and mapping what they might benefit the most from. We will offer them a beneficial mapping of their strengths and possible needs. In combination with contacting new customers we will do a follow up and evaluation with companies that have participated in our previous project connected to our masters thesis, to find out what they found most useful and what they might have wished to be included that wasn’t. In addition to that, we will set up a webpage with information about our project and start to create a business plan for our future work with Retentio.
What do you expect to achieve during Leapfrogs?
We expect to achieve new insight into specific needs that professional service firms have in regards to retention that will complement the knowledge that we have from research done on the matter. We also expect to have time to create a more specific business plan and the time to evaluate our previous project to improve our service.
Blog post #2
Tell us what you have done on your project so far during the Leapfrogs time.
So far during the project I have evaluated a pilot-project we did during spring. I’ve used the evaluation to change some things in the original plan of the services Retent will offer. For example we offer mapping of employees job-satisfaction and the way of mapping this has been changed a lot. Also, since we started planning the service that we offer, I have created a logo, graphic identity and website so that we can start communicating our services to potential customers.
Has everything gone according to the plan? Has anything unexpected occurred? Has something been easier/harder than expected?
Since a lot of people are on vacation it has been harder than expected to get in contact with the people that I have been needing to talk to during the evaluation of the pilot-project. It is also really hard to find out what companies are willing to pay for a service that right now does not exist on the market and maybe they do not know they need it. Framing the service in a way that convinces the companies of the value of the service is harder then expected.
What will you focus on during the remaining time? Will you follow your original plan or has anything changed along the way?
I am mainly going to follow the original plan and during the remaining time I will focus on continuing to try to get in contact with potential customers. I will also continue to develop the website and try to make the service that we offer more clear to customers. in addition to this I will start to look for ways of financing the project during the rest of the year and try to finish a business plan that can help us during the continued work with Retent.
Blog post #3
How did you experience the three months?
It’s been very meaningful and fun working with my project Retent during the summer. I could not have reached this far with the idea if I hadn’t had the opportunity to work full time on my own business idea during these three months.
What has been most difficult and what has been most enjoyable?
Was has been the most difficult is trying to finance the project and find customers. The most enjoyable has been to develop and define the project and the service that we try to deliver with Retent.
Will you continue working on your project in the future? If so, what is your next step?
The project will be on hold for one year and I will only do some minor work on business strategy and research. Hopefully in one year we can continue looking for customers and start delivering the service.
What would you say is the most important lesson learnt while working on your project?
The most important lesson is the services are hard to put a price on and that even though a lot of companies have the need for the service, and there is a benefit with the service compared to other services, it is still hard to find customers because of the companies lack of time. Also research takes longer than you think.
Do you have any tips to other new entrepreneurs?
Find someone who believes in your idea and get them to explain why they think it will work. And then find someone who does not believe in your idea and get them to explain why they don’t. This was very helpful to get some input from someone outside the project.