Your life is busy and it seems to get busier as the days go by.
Between work, the gym, family time, running errands and taking your kids to the various activities they’re involved in, you find yourself with no time left over to get all those small maintenance jobs done around the house.
Painting your guest room, installing the overhead fan in your dining room and fixing a leaking faucet all need to be taken care of. Time is certainly not on your side and everytime you turn around something else needs done. You throw your arms in the air out of frustration and wonder whatever should you do?
Well, turn to the Internet of course because it’s where you’ll find JobJar (www.jobjar.ca).
This Calgary startup connects people with handymen around the area to get all those small jobs done, like installing a lamp or painting a small room.
Naomi Pereira, the co-founder and “Chick In Charge” at JobJar knows, from experience as a previous contractor herself, how difficult it can be to find a person to take on those type of jobs. But, with JobJar you can post a job, get multiple quotes, and are able to book, schedule and pay through the platform.
“I would get asked over and over from friends, family and past clients to help them with those small jobs. And, even though I did dearly want to help, I couldn’t take one of our guys from a big job site for a small job.”
Her Divine Inspiration
Naomi knew there had to be a better way of doing this. A way where she could help those looking to the get these type of jobs done, while helping contractors find work. Combine that with her love of technology and a little help from some intuition “it (the idea) did come in a dream,” and her JobJar adventure was on its way.
Sometimes the pieces just fall into place when you have a great idea, which is exactly what happened for Naomi.
“I pitched the idea to my co-founder Rafael (Peiters) our CTO. His background is actually developing platforms for the banking industry and health care industry for over 20 years or so. As I pitched it, he said, ‘This is something I would love to do.’”
Along with his tech experience Rafael has a personal attachment to the project. His dad was a carpenter and he grew up in a carpentry shop which gave him the ability to understand differences between the larger & small jobs and the pain points involved.
The Good And Great Difference
Business ideas these days are everywhere, however, not every idea makes for a great business. Naomi knows the difference comes down to two important factors.
The first factor for Naomi is the team she has around her. Entrepreneurship is such a roller-coaster ride and she leans on her team when she’s having a down day.
“I think the strength on that is having a great team that you can rely on. No not every day is going to be easy. Not every day is fantastic. And if you have a great team that’s there for you and you for them you know you can make sure that one day at a time is actually a great day that you go through. So yeah I think it starts with the team.”
The second factor, and driving force behind every successful business, is its ‘why’. For Naomi and her team, the ‘why’ behind JobJar is something that’s “dear to our hearts.”
“So we’re all immigrants and the people that we’ve identified that take on these small jobs have an immigrant background, not not all of them, but a lot of them are in the industry.”
All of these immigrants with great skills will land in the construction industry and don’t get a lot of guidance of how to navigate their careers.
“So the platform that we have facilitates their ability to run a business with us in the back end. So we take care of accounting, their marketing, their invoicing, scheduling and even give them tools on how to establish themselves in the construction industry as a reputable individual.”
The JobJar website not only helps contractors find work, it also builds something sustainable. It provides each individual help on the important aspects of running a business. JobJar gives them them the tools on how to establish themselves in the construction industry as a reputable individual.
Providing Inspiration & Hope
The unique part of JobJar is that it empowers tradespeople to take on an entrepreneurial mentality and realize they can monetize their skills to build a sustainable business.
Providing hope to its users caught the attention of CBC, CTV and Global who all interviewed Naomi. As well, they were named The Most Promising Startup of 2017 by the Calgary Chamber of Commerce.
“It’s been a fabulous ride. We are very involved with the community and I think it feels amazing to be recognized for that. The Calgary Chamber has been amazing supporters of us. We’ve been the finalists for their Innovation Award and People’s Choice Award.”
Reaching Far Beyond Helping Contractors
When an unexpected tragedy hit close to home, Naomi and her team didn’t hesitate to step up by assisting in the Fort McMurray rebuild. They used the JobJar platform to help those in need find a contractor and provided a special section on the website for contractors to help.
“It was devastating, what happened there. And we, in the construction sector, knew that Fort Mac (Fort McMurray) just needed to get on their feet and start rebuilding as quickly as possible. So with our database, we said what better way to, you know, inform our database of the initiatives that would be happening because they were going to need a lot of workforce.”
It’s this type of thinking that has JobJar looking at a brighter future. Expansion throughout Alberta and Western Canada is the next frontier for JobJar. Eventually, Naomi wants to take it internationally.
“If we could, you know, we would love to go to the moon.”
From the basic concept to validation, Naomi and her team have built the dream platform that helps contractors and those looking for contractors in an effective and efficient way.
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