Rebecca Gidall came through Creative HQ’s Venture Up programme in 2016. Designed for 16-21 year olds, the six-week entrepreneurship programme allows teams to form, build, validate and pitch their business ideas to investors.

During their time at Venture Up Rebecca’s team, PartTimer, validated their problem, marketed their solution and built a database of over 1,300 students looking for jobs. They left Venture Up with an online platform that connected high school students with part time jobs through personalities, not CV’s.

Since the end of Venture Up, PartTimer have leveraged the learning and connections from Venture Up. Just three weeks after the programme, they had their first investor. They’ve expanded their service beyond students, now catering to any age group. In the last few months the duo have brought in $50k investment, pivoted many times (leading to their now sustainable business model), finished building their minimum viable product, qualified for the Amazon Activate programme and hired an Auckland-based CTO, Paul Bowker.

With some 500+ active job seekers in their system, they are currently revisiting their pool of Wellington based early adopters and working alongside them to develop a viable solution, providing a great way to obtain useful metrics. The next big steps for PartTimer are; focussing on sales efforts, adding brand value and expanding to all major cities in New Zealand.

How did Venture Up influence you and your team?

Without Venture Up, PartTimer simply wouldn’t exist. The connections and learnings that were made through the programme have shaped PartTimer into what it is today. For me personally, Venture Up had a huge impact on me, improving such things as my resilience, and confidence to make my own decisions.

What have you achieved since the end of the programme?

  • We’ve raised $150k investment, with another funding round on it’s way.
  • Built a fully operational 1.0 version of the site.
  • Gained key partnerships with the likes of Reading Cinemas, Courier Post, and the Number 8 Retail Group who manage over 200 retail stores, including BP, Burger Fuel, Fix convenience stores, and many more.

What do you find most challenging about being a startup?

The most difficult thing is being able to find the time to truly step back and look at your startup holistically. Being in a relatively small team, means the majority of our time is often taken up by working on smaller, individual tasks, rather than being able to truly take the time to sit back and think.

What gets you out of bed every morning to come and work on your startup? Why do you love doing what you do?

The first couple of reasons are selfish ones – firstly, it’s knowing that I learn so much every day. It’s almost incomprehensible to me just how much I’ve managed to learn throughout this period in my life, and for that, I’m truly grateful. The other thing that gets me out of bed, is that I know that every day I have is going to be completely different.

How did Creative HQ benefit your startups growth (revenue & physical) and what do you enjoy the most about being a part of the Creative HQ network?

Being able to use the CHQ space was immensely valuable to our start-up. Without CHQ we would have nowhere to work besides our own homes or a library. This means that we are actually able to work as a team, benefit from the awesome resources that CHQ provides, as well as stay connected with the Wellington startup community. All in all, the stability that CHQ provided for us was what we benefitted from the most.

What’s the next BIG chunky goal for your startup? Where do you see the business in 5-10 years?

Getting 1000 active employers using PartTimer is our current biggest goal. We currently have around 1/4 of that, so we’re already 25% there (Yay!). Gaining 1000 employers will ensure profitability for PartTimer, which is obviously hugely important in our journey. Big Goals looking out to 5+ years would be that PartTimer is the market leader and database of most Job Seekers in New Zealand. In addition, we’d like to have a foot-hold into Australia and be beginning to look at other Asia-Pacific countries such as Singapore.

The best thing besides raising some money for the venture was when we had our first end-to-end fulfilment of our service. It was so exciting to finally see somebody we didn’t know, use the service to find someone they didn’t know, and then to have all the communications and technology work with a result that saw money arrive in our bank account… the machine worked!

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Venture Up
Venture Up
An online platform that connects high school students with part time jobs through personalities, not CVs.