BiiG Conference 2016 – From Innovation to Impact
JESI CEO//Co-Founder Joe Hoolahan interviewed by Ian Skippen, Pop-up Radio
Ian: BiiG 2016, Innovation Showcase. We have a lot of people who have said that I want to be a part of this, I want to impart some knowledge to the public sector. I got Joe Hoolahan from JESI. Thanks for joining us Joe.
Joe: Thanks Ian, it’s good to be here.
Ian: Now tell us! Give us the JESI story first. What are you bringing to the showcase?
Joe: JESI is a North Queensland start-up. We are software that looks after people’s ability to understand where their workforce are when they travel. Mobile workforce are on the increase, we are offering services to a range of Government departments so they can actually undestand where their people are travelling and most importantly when they get there they are safe.
Ian: I was speaking to Kathy on your stand yesterday and I said, uh, it’s like tracking people! She said no, no, no no.
Joe: We are pretty quick to get away from tracking. It’s about giving peace of mind to those who care. So really, it’s not a blue dot on a screen, it’s about knowing that you plan your journey, so fatigue management. But most importantly it’s that we know you get there and that you are ok.
Ian: So how long have you been going?
Joe: Overnight success of 4 years, as start-ups go. We have been commercial for 2 years, just over 2 years. Offices in obviously Brisbane and Townsville.
Ian: So what have the questions been from the delegates here?
Joe: What is journey management? Which is a good learning for us because we assume that everyone knows what journey management is. Journey Management really is your people planning where they are going, and as an enterprise knowing where they are, and how you are managing that within your workforce, and the risks associate with that.
Ian: All of those things dovetail, when you talk about journey management and you talk about a start-up as well, and risk management, it’s all part of it, isn’t it?
Joe: It is. We see different levels of risk appetite. We see that some people, we are still very Australian in the way we deal with journey management, it’s like ‘she’ll be right, we will worry about that when it happens’. Where as other parts of the world are much more mature about how they deal with their risk around journey management as well.
Ian: What can Government learn from a start-up?
Joe: Get s#$% done. I probably shouldn’t say that should I? It’s about getting in, about making sure you are lean. Something that we look at is saying, don’t leave an outcome of a meeting to have another meeting. Make sure that you are actually getting in and achieving every time you meet with somebody. Peoples time is valuable, we are all resource poor, we are all time poor. It’s about being focused on the outcomes.
Ian: I think Charlie Leadbeater said that this morning. Except ‘Learn Fast, Act Fast’.
Joe: Yes, it is. 4 years in a start-up is a long time. 6 months in a start-up is a long time. It’s really about harnessing the opportunities and get the people on board as early as you can around the table, make decisions, have a little bit of risk. I think I heard Professor Williams from Melbourne Business School talk about ‘we need more risk takers’. We certainly support that as well.
Ian: Well you are 4 years in, you still have your head above water.
Joe: Yeah look, it’s a good journey for us as well. We’ve learnt alot. We are expanding rapidly, we look to double our staff in the next 6 months. Global domination is always a good thing. We certainly want to make sure that we are providing a great product that keeps with the times as well.
Ian: Good luck with it all. No doubt you’ve learnt a lot from this conference as well.
Joe: Yeah definitely. It’s about how we better understand Government as a client as well. Government is actually an investor in JESI through the Business Development Fund. So, it’s how we better understand to communicate better with Government as well. It’s been great.
Ian: A 4 year success story. Good luck for the future, and thank you for coming to BiiG 2016.
Joe: Very good. Excellent. Thank you.