Reflections On the Australia Post Pitchfest: From Idea to Business

Recently, we entered the Australia Post Regional Pitchfest competition. I won’t lie, it was a scary moment. I’m not the best public speaker, and our idea was still in its very early stages. The other finalists were established and run by some very smart and entrepreneurial people but I thought it’d be a great experience to kick-start our idea into a business and meet some amazing people along the way.

When we got accepted as a national finalist in the ACT, I knew that it was time to really start cracking down and to build some traction. We started to get really involved in the our idea and stress-testing a whole bunch of assumptions through customer interviews and actually going out and selling our product to businesses and students.

Reflecting on our experience through the PitchFest, it was a great kick in the pants to start working on a whole bunch of things that were important for our business like our social media and try to get on the same standard as some of the other competitors in the ACT.

Melbourne

The AusPost Pitchfest allowed us to go to Melbourne for two action-packed days of networking, learning, and observing some of the great start-up talent in the Melbourne Accelerator Program and the other finalists in the Pitchfest. It was a really fun trip, and it was so cool to see so much variety in start-ups across regional Australia. You had some very developed and technology based startups like the Victoria winners at NextAddress and even a Whiskey distillery business like Deviant Distillery.

The Melbourne start-up scene was something that every Aussie city should strive to. We had the opportunity to attend the Melbourne Accelerator’s pitching night and the standard of the start-ups there were exceptional. We even signed up for a trial for one of the start-ups, Reqfire, to start managing and designing our product.

Community

You wouldn’t expect such a co-operative and collaborative community coming out of a competition and all across regional Australia no less. But the community was a great source of information when preparing the pitches and even just for generalist advice on business development, marketing, and some great resources. Huge thanks from the CareerMaps team to everyone who participated and joined in, and we found it a great community.

Australia Post

Australia Post went all out on this Pitchfest. From bringing speakers to the events in Melbourne to networking and talking to all the finalists individually. You could see that AusPost was really invested in the program and actually cared about it, and I think that’s amazing to see from a Corporate organisation. I definitely have a whole new view on Australia Post after being a part of the Pitchfest, and it was such a great and well-supported experience.

Next steps

We’re using the traction and stuff we’ve learned from the AusPost regional Pitchfest to better improve our program, learn from our mistakes, and continue to grow and expand CareerMaps. I’d strongly recommend any regional start-ups to apply next year, even if it’s just an idea! CareerMaps was an idea when we applied and by the time we pitched our idea, it was formed business with a strong tech team, sales, and a real vision.

For more information on CareerMaps, visit our website here: http://careermaps.com.au/