Elevator Pitch: LML Connect

Elevator Pitch is a regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we’re talking with Steve Daw, co-founder of Last Minute Labour Connect.

In 128 words or less, explain your business idea.

Last Minute Labour Connect is a new online network that connects casual and short-term jobseekers with business owners with last minute vacancies in the trade and construction industries. We’re creating a new means of connecting employers and workers, it works like a noticeboard, allowing businesses to manage their labour and varying workloads common in these trades.

We’re striving to combat the current trade hole that exists in Australia for both tradies between jobs or out of work, with potential employers looking for workers on short notice, and also looking to sub contract their full time employees to companies that are busy while work is slow.

After signing up for LML Connect for free, people looking for work or businesses looking for workers can create a listing (we call them Shout Outs) and connect with each other.

What strategies are you using to grow and finance your idea?

The site is co-founded by four Sydney-based tradies. We all come from different trades and have pooled our resources following many years’ experience in the industry. Throughout our careers we’ve all experienced firsthand the challenges of finding work ourselves or the need to find workers for our businesses.

To kick-start the launch of LML Connect and get the word out, we partnered with Triple M for a radio campaign. We’ve also engaged a Sydney-based PR agency to help us get the word out, alongside a strategic social media plan.

What’s the biggest challenge facing your business?

As a brand new startup, our biggest challenge is awareness. Having people understand the concept without thinking it’s a labour hire company is also difficult! We’re working hard to get the word out to as many people as possible and drive registration. WOM is key to the success of LML Connect, and in turn help jobseekers and employers connect.

How do you differentiate your business from your competitors?

We are a website that allows businesses and individuals to connect without a third party taking a fee. Traditional job seeking websites don’t cater for short term or last minute situations, something that’s very common in this industry. As tradies and business owners ourselves, we understand the impact on small businesses if they can’t find workers for the job, and the consequences for an individual if they are out of work. This is what prompted us to launch the site.

LML Connect is a platform aimed specifically at the trade and construction industry. It’s also a free service – anyone can register and create a listing.

What one phone, tablet or PC application could you not live without?

LML connect…. Just joking. I use Invoice2go to manage all my invoices with my electrical business. It’s really great for small business owners as everything is in one place, synced across all your devices and you can easily check outstanding accounts.

What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t be afraid to get behind something if you really believe in it. LML Connect evolved from a need I had running my electrical business. I really believe it will work once people are aware as it came from a legitimate need in this industry. It’s always a risk to invest money and time in something that’s not guaranteed to be a success, but you’ve got to be in it to win it.

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