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Page history last edited by Vincent Chan 13 years, 8 months ago

Our Educated Guesses

Finding, nurturing, and developing talent should be some of the most important tasks in a company, especially for a growing startup. That's why we want to build a simple HR/Talent Managment application that customers really want to use.


After reading The Four Steps to the Epiphany, Lessons Learned and Startup Marketing Blog, we have decided to use the customer development and lean startup frameworks in this new venture.


Since I am a first time entrepreneur, I truly understand the concerns and difficulties when implementing the customer development process for the first time. I want to use this case study to record my progress and learn from other smart practitioners in this LS wiki group.


Type of Market 

Startup that wants to resegment an existing market as a niche and low cost player.


1) Customer Discovery


First of all, I want to find out which business ideas in my mind is the best. So I have created a free survey using Survey Monkey, posted it on Hacker News (acutal url of the post), and collected potential customers' and advisors' emails via MailChimp. Although I have only recieved around 30 responses, all of the feedback are extremely valuable and I have decided to work on the talent management app idea.




To initiate first customers contact, I produced some sreenshots using Photoshop and showed them to potential customers:


They generally liked what they saw. So I developed a prototype of this HR management web app in 8 weeks. Yet I made a few big mistakes along the way. I made the MVP too complicated and didn't ask potential customers if they were COMMITTED to pay for such a product. After the prototype was finished, they were not willing to pay for it because some essential features (e.g. recruiting...etc) were missing in the product. They wanted a less complicated product with solid and smart features. In other words, they accept half a product that kicks ass but not a half-ass product.




After getting this feedback, I try to focus on one single feature and ignore everything else. I want to make sure this single feature kick ass before moving to the other ones. And then "Resume Tracker" (http://ResumeTracker.com) is born. It is a simple applicant tracking tool that help you handle job applications, promote new openings and manage applicant information.




When Resume Tracker was ready, I sent it back to the original users of my HRM app. Some of them loved it and paid for the product. I am still trying to improve the product based on their comments.


My next goal is to achieve Product/Market fit and find a repeatable sales model.


to be continued...



2) Customer Validation


3) Customer Creation


4) Company Building




My blog: http://primitus.com/blog

My twitter: http://twitter.com/vincentchan

Product site: http://resumetracker.com


Comments (2)

Vincent Chan said

at 9:59 am on Jun 14, 2010

Just update the case study. Feel free to give comments, thanks.

Holger Dieterich said

at 3:49 am on Jan 31, 2010

how's it going, three months after this initial post?

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