A freelance talent marketplace
Co-founder & Designer
Saas, iOS App, Desktop
UX Design, UI Design, Product Strategy
We wanted to create a better way for freelancers to get work. Availo was the first user-controlled talent network that connected organizations with world-class design talent. Cients could meet creative professionals, see their profiles, experiences, and rates, communicate with them instantly and book. For the freelancer we aimed to be a facilitator, removing barriers and large middlemen cuts and to work with them as their career grew, taking care of bookings, payments, advice, mentorship and in the future further business related services such as insurance and pensions.
As a co-founder I was responsible for designing and testing the platform, pitching to angels and incubators, building the community and selling the system to agencies, studios and tech companies.
Everything went to plan, we closed an initial pre-seed round with angel investors alongside Seedcamp, we built and launched our Beta to 100 top-tier companies such as Google, UsTwo, IDEO and Facebook and help place plenty of amazing freelancers from our community of 300+ creatives and designers. The business model relied on investment from VC’s and angel investors, this meant we wouldn’t generate a profit for a few years while we grew the platform and built a strong team, sadly after a lot of investor interest Brexit reared it’s ugly head and we failed to raise to take the company to the next stage.
In hindsight, I think the future of freelance isn’t to do with freelance platforms, they’re just a poor replacement for ‘the middleman’. It’s about building a reputation as an expert over time, working within organisations and alongside clients, forming solid relationships, collaborating and teaming up with other freelancers to tender for the bigger slices of work that can be delivered as a nimble unit.
Anyway, that’s what we tried to achieve I guess.
Viva la freelance revolution!
MVP Validation — Sketching, product strategy, an early design sprint and prototype build.
Seedcamp — Incubator, building out the beta app, community building & user testing with seasoned freelancers.
Nick Wood (Dev) & Rob Bye