Home » Culture » Click Mechanic Co-Founder Andrew Jervis chats to Startacus
Click Mechanic Co-Founder Andrew Jervis chats to Startacus
by Startacus Admin
Aiming to revolutionise the way 'we' the consumer find and use car mechanics is Click Mechanic, an online marketplace for car repair.
When we got the chance to chat with Co-founder Andrew Jervis, we did just that, and cutting to the chase, we got to the nuts and bolts of the issue with our first few questions. We promise to park most car related puns going forward too...
Andrew, first up, give us your pitch in 140 characters or less - what is Click Mechanic?
Sure thing. ClickMechanic is an online marketplace for car repair. We're bringing greater transparency, trust and convenience to the sector with an awesome solution which customers and mechanics want.
Tell us all about the eureka moment that led to Click Mechanic?
I don't believe any business idea is a complete Eureka moment as they constantly evolve but I guess the opportunity first dawned on me about 5 years ago when I was running another business in the automotive parts space. Having grown the business into a nice sustainable lifestyle business I started looking at other opportunities and problems that consumers faced in the space. It soon dawned on me that car repair was fraught with problems for both mechanics and consumers and after speaking with my mechanic brother and having read a series of industry reports I realised this was space ripe for disruption. A masters thesis on the space and building an MVP soon followed!
Not to throw a spanner in the works, but the car mechanic industry does have a few cowboys - what do you do to make sure the standard of the mechanics on the site remains high?
Good question and I like that spanner pun! The space can be a little notorious for "cowboys" and we're well aware of this. To overcome this all our mechanics are vetted on several criteria, we ensure they have a solid work history, carry all the equipment to do the right job and have all the correct insurance. If for whatever reason we allow a mechanic to get through the net who may be considered a cowboy we're quick to act to ensure the quality of the network remains high.
Tell us, how else you are innovating within this space?
We do some really interesting stuff with data. We literally licence millions of data points around repair times and this enables us to give customers real time quotes on our site. So whether it's 6am in the morning or 11pm at night a customer can come to our site, get a quote and book in. There is no need to wait until working hours, call around several garages and then try and get a quote and book.
How well has the business been received to date, and what valuable support and investment have you managed to secure?
It's been an amazing couple of years so far. We have a hundreds of active vetted mechanics signed up and they are getting hundreds of jobs every month. Customer reviews are through the roof and we've maintained some excellent growth this year. We also have some awesome advisors and investors. They include Imperial Innovations, the former MD of The MailOnline, A former Director of AutoTrader and the former FD of the Ministry Of Justice.
What one piece of advice would you now pass on to an early stage startup or entrepreneur?
Build, measure, learn, sell. In the early days it's all about getting product market fit as soon as possible and to do this you need to be getting your product in the hands of its users and if its a paid for service or product get people to put their money where their mouth is. However I think it's also really important to keep things simple in those early days. Too many people spend too much time trying to build the perfect product before release and before they know it 6 months has passed. It's all about building minimum feature sets and testing them quickly.
What's next for Click Mechanic?
We have some really exciting things in the pipes but as Paul Graham says the most important thing for a startup to do which defines them is to grow. So we'll be focusing our efforts on more growth.
Mi-IDEA Manchester Networking Event
27th Sep 2016
The teams from CISCO and Manchester Science Partnerships have teamed up to create Mi-IDEA, a post-accelerator designed to foster and nurture digital innovation in the North West of England.