What year are you and what are you studying?
I am a junior at Indiana University studying Informatics with a minor focusing on entrepreneurship and small business management.
Can you tell me more about your startup, “Fixit”?
Fixit is a home renovation/repair application connecting homeowners to contractors through the use of a bidding system. Homeowners can post jobs to our platform where they will be seen by contractors who specialize in that type of job. Through our application, we hope to shift the mindset in the industry of home renovation/repair by providing the tools necessary allowing contractors to make thorough estimates in a matter of hours or even minutes. This would be opposed to calling dozens of numbers hoping somebody will complete the job to their satisfaction after a long-drawn-out process. We at Fixit believe in providing an array of estimates per job, a place to safely facilitate connections and payments, as well as a platform for contractors to grow their business and show off their work. Fixit is your one-stop home shop connecting you to contractors for all of your home needs.
How did you go about starting your startup?
Fixit began as an idea originating from problems we continued to have around our homes. Every time we had an issue, it ended up taking days calling contractors, gathering quotations, and once the work was finally finished it was weeks later. This proved to be problematic and over lunch, my partner and I devised an idea/concept to be pitched to the Shoemaker Innovation Center for a position as a client in the center. Fast-forward from February of 2019 when we pitched, to August of 2019. At this point, we had created a complete wireframe highlighting the functionality of our app and through an extensive vetting process, found our team of developers. After working with our team to convey all of our ideas for development, the process to build our application began in September of 2019. As time has passed and we come to the present moment, our app is in its final stages of development with aims to hit the market within a month. Currently, we are shifting our attention to determining effective marketing campaigns as well as to put together a solid budget which will allow us to use the assumptions gathered from the Bloomington market and test them as we expand nationwide.
What was the hardest thing to do in your startup journey?
I believe it is extremely hard to nail down the most challenging thing in this process so far, but if I had to highlight one aspect of it all it would have to be stepping out of my comfort zone constantly. I have never been one for the center of attention, but this journey has thrown me into that role on numerous occasions. Whether it be meeting with venture capitalists, angel investors, speaking to large crowds, or whatever else this app has allowed me to do, I am constantly pulled out of my comfort zone.
What was the most enjoyable part of your startup journey?
I think the most enjoyable part of this process has been the various people that I have encountered working on this app. Most everyone I meet comes from a wide array of backgrounds and I have been able to learn from them in numerous ways. I have not only learned how to be a better professional through these interactions, but I have used their insight and guidance to aid Fixit as a whole.
What are your next steps for Fixit?
As of right now, our next steps will start with the completion of the development process as a whole. Once this has finished and we are confident the app will be ready for the market, it will be tested in Bloomington. Whatever knowledge and insights we gather from this market will be used to help expand our business out nationwide and if all goes according to plan, globally.
Do you have any advice for any fresh-faced or budding entrepreneurs?
One thing that I would say to someone entering the field of entrepreneurship would be as Nike said, “Just do it”. Whether or not you think you can bring the project to its completion it never hurts to start validating your idea within your specified market. Start by surrounding yourself with people who might be smarter than you and never stop learning from them. I truly believe a collaborative atmosphere and the willingness to get past the starting point will lead many entrepreneurs to do great things intended or not.