The challenge: Digitising the venture selection process

Venture selection at Creative HQ is nothing short of a fine art. A series of steps validate each submission and match them with the Creative HQ Startup Manager who can add the most value.

This venture management system (VMS) would provide a digital one-stop shop for each venture Creative HQ receives. Every idea would be entered into the system, assigned a manager, and guided through to validation.

We’re well set up to continue releasing new versions with more functionality. And it’s great to have an experienced team just upstairs to support us as the product grows.

Finn Lawrence

Innovation Specialist, Product, Creative HQ

Our Approach: Choosing the right frameworks

We chose Ruby on Rails as a framework for the VMS because it’s useful for creating bespoke technologies. It also has vast open-source components, which made it the perfect choice for bootstrapping the Minimum Viable Product (MVP), and enabling rapid iterations. 

We deployed the dockerized application (with container technology) to production on AWS infrastructure. Docker makes it easy to create, deploy and run the application. It provides much higher development and deployment efficiency, and better control over its configuration.  

For the UI, we used Material Design for Bootstrap as the framework, which provided a solid starting point to iterate on.

Speeding up the process by reducing paperwork

Logging every interaction into a system prevents ventures from falling through the cracks. At any stage, ideas that are put aside can be picked up again if circumstances change. This reduces admin activity, and speeds up match-making between a venture and their Startup Manager.

Creative HQ now has an internal framework that’s robust, easy to follow, highly dynamic and able to offer customised outputs for each venture. They can quickly discover details or unique attributes of each venture, such as the entrepreneur’s persona-type: hustler, hacker, hero, or creator. 

By using modern technologies and skilled external developers we were able to get a working MVP into production really quickly. This let us put it in front of customers, external stakeholders, and our own team, to test and start iterating as soon as possible.

Finn Lawrence

Innovation Specialist, Product, Creative HQ

The result: Collecting ideas and validating with ease

Creative HQ are able to use the VMS in both day-to-day and long-term strategic operations. Since the first release, we’ve continued to work with them to identify and implement product enhancements – reinforcing our commitment to the iterative, collaborative approach we established from the outset. 

The first iteration of the VMS was released in late September 2017. Since then more than 100 ideas have been collected and over 40 ventures have passed the first round of validation.