In the latest of our blog series, we talk to one of the inspiring businesses we work with, to find out more about their journey, ambitions and top tips for business success.

Under the spotlight is Do-IT Solutions. Founded by Professor Amanda Kirby and Dr Ian Smythe, Cardiff-based Do-IT Solutions works with organisations, providing services to support people who may be neurodivergent – for example, learning difficulties and disabilities. As experts in learning and disability, Professor Kirby and Dr Smythe have delivered large-scale research programmes, published peer-reviewed papers and books and delivered training at Masters level to more than 50,000 professionals.

 

 

Here, Prof Kirby shares what she's learned on her business journey so far.
 

Tell us about Do-IT Solutions

Fuelled by the negative effects of social exclusion, we started off with a mission to identify neurodiverse conditions for people at the edges of society.

Do-IT works with organisations in the criminal and youth justice system, charities, apprenticeship and training providers, schools, employers and other specialist organisations.

We provide a range of support packages – the Do-IT Profiler and the Do-IT Neurodiversity Workplace Profiler among them. The Do-IT Profiler is a software-as-a-service which helps identify skills, abilities, strengths and weaknesses, as well as monitor and evaluate over time – offering support and recommendations based on data analysis at person, group, and organisational levels.

The Do-IT Neurodiversity Workplace Profiler is a web-based screening tool to support employees and their line managers. Another of our services is the Do-IT Workplace Assessors Profiler – a web-based screening tools for occupational health and disability assessors to use with employees and provide one-to-one support.

Do-IT takes a Whole Person Approach, helping people with neurodiverse conditions become the best they can be.

Endorsed by 25 years of clinical and academic research, we are trusted in education, employment and justice to support individuals and organisations through tailored online assessment, coaching and training.

 

What are your proudest moments in business so far?

We have already won a Barclays Regional Social Entrepreneur Award at a ceremony in Bristol in August 2019. The award recognises how we are changing the profiling industry in a positive way.

 

If you were starting again, what would you do differently?

It’s difficult to pinpoint the different decisions we would have made. Given that we feel we are very much pioneers in this field, our business journey has been one of exciting discovery. And it’s been an exhilarating journey so far!

 

How has support from Business Wales AGP helped your business?

We accessed coaching via Business Wales AGP to help develop our business strategy, enhance our financial planning and management as well as our branding and marketing strategy.

We have employed an additional four people since registration as well as experiencing a substantial funding uplift and our first export sale to the Middle East.

 

What advice and guidance would you give other businesses starting out?

  • Do your groundwork. Our knowledge in our field comes from years of research, so it’s grounded in experience. We are proud of that and think it gives us a head-start in the sector.

 

  • Be ambitious. If you have a great product that you believe in, then you can take it to market and make it a success.

 

  • Seek advice. We are experts in our field, but that doesn’t automatically transfer itself to entrepreneurship. That’s why Business Wales AGP’s support and help has been so important to our development. Starting a business is a learning experience in itself, so be open to taking help from outside.

 

  • Build a team around you who believe in your product. Getting recruitment right is key to building a successful company.

 

  • Enjoy it! Yes, it’s hard work, yes it takes a lot of hours. But starting a business is something that is fun and satisfying. If you’re not enjoying it then maybe you should reflect on your experience so far and where you are going with it.

 

For more information on Do-It Solutions click here

Further information on the Business Wales Accelerated Growth Programme.

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