Tuesday 1st December
The Growth Hub has helped a bespoke software development company with innovation, funding, and business support. Matter of Software is a mobile app development company that helps businesses digitise their processes, maximise their data and use the business’ data to improve engagement from clients.
As a company that relies on business-to-business services, Matter of Software was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Ryan Bishop, Managing Director, explained, “COVID-19 impacted us, we work across a wide range of industries and saw challenges in the sense that half of those industries were heavily impacted and therefore working projects stopped or reduced.” However, not all businesses that they work with were negatively affected, as he went on to say, “then we saw other industries had benefitted and were positively impacted by COVID-19 and therefore demands from those businesses increased.”
Matter of Software had to adjust to conform to the “new normal” ways of working, Ryan said: “we as a business had to change, we’re obviously a support business so we couldn’t furlough people and therefore we had to actively look at how we improve the way we operate, the market and maximise the opportunities that we have available to us within the community.”
The software developers needed assistance on how to improve their operational methods and this is where the GBSLEP Growth Hub’s services came in. “We previously had some interaction with the Growth Hub so it was then a natural cause to come back and be pointed in the right direction” (Ryan Bishop, Managing Director). It was the result of the marketing activities that drew Ryan’s attention to the support that the Growth Hub was offering, “we get the newsletters and updates – so we check to see what’s available, what’s out there, what support is there, what’s happening in the region, what we might be missing – to ensure that we stay up to date, and as part of that, we were alerted to this support”. The Growth Hub newsletter provides free business advice, hints and tips to help your business, business support programmes, local industry news and the latest events and webinars, to sign up for the newsletter click here.
Ryan Bishop (Managing Director, Matter of Software) was put in touch with Silvia Gaplovska, the Growth Hub’s new Innovation Account Manager, who is also a Business Navigator and Account Manager for Bruntwood SciTech. She connected Ryan to a number of the Growth Hub’s partners across the region and introduced him to many business programmes that Matter of Software may be eligible for. “It’s still very early days yet its sounding quite positive, we should be eligible for a number of schemes that would be suitable for us. We’ve been guided to a number of local entities including Aston University who offer a range of schemes and support that might suit us. Therefore, we are engaging with those entities to discuss how they might support us and what additional support is available through those partners.”
One of those “entities” was a financial and funding scheme that Aston University offers, called Innovation Vouchers. This focuses on receiving funding and business support to drive innovation and growth in your company, you can find out more here.
Ryan continued to praise the guidance that he was provided and the Growth Hub’s network, saying: “we’ve been helped with strategic support and direction on how we can leverage the partners in the local area”. Again, we were looking for support and understanding – what support do we need to grow, what support do we have to improve the skills that we have, and part of Silvia’s mandate and response was for us to participate in partially funded programmes and also funded programmes with support routes. Aston is a good example, it is a combination of access to funding, understanding of funding but also the support and access to knowledge to capitalise on that.”
Ryan is grateful for the Growth Hub’s involvement in connecting Matter of Software to the Business Growth Programme (BGP), he said: “the Growth Hub has pointed us in the direction of the BGP, we wouldn’t have known about that, and we wouldn’t have been able to achieve plans so quickly.” He further explained: “that’s helped us to rebrand, we have external sales and marketing support in terms of how we can better communicate ourselves, and we have recruited an additional resource”.
He said “the BGP grant allows us to rebrand and promote ourselves better and we’ll look at how to capitalise on that” – if this is something that your business needs assistance in, find out more about the Business Growth Programme here.
The fast paced working and follow up of the Growth Hub’s service is what Ryan has been particularly impressed with, stating: “recent engagement has been great in terms of somebody acknowledging what we need help with and then somebody following up on it.”
He is pleased with the quick and efficient process of finding out your business needs, “it’s not been too time consuming, I think businesses are busy doing lots of things, and you think you’d be asked to fill in a lot of forms and then you’re going to have to explain the devil in the detail to get no value and you’ll see no update.” Ryan (Managing Director, Matter of Software) continues: “actually you give as much as you want to get. It doesn’t have to be anything more than 30 minutes or an hour of conversation to then see whether its suitable for you or to see if you’re going to get some value from their services before you need to decide whether you’d like to invest more time.”
The Growth Hub’s assistance to Matter of Software will help the business to grow and innovate. Through a network of expert advisors & partnerships, the Growth Hub can also help you to access the support and funding you need, to strengthen your business.