One of a kynd
11 Oct 2019
Michael Metcalfe is the founder of Kynd, a healthcare app that empowers people to choose the right carer, based on their unique needs. The Southern Cross University alumnus launched his startup two years ago and has since grown rapidly in an industry that is undergoing significant change.
“For many decades the health care industry has worked a certain way with everything controlled by the traditional provider, but over the last few years the sector has become deregulated and we’ve also seen the introduction of the NDIS scheme,” says Michael.
“Kynd is a platform where anyone with a disability or needing social support can find local healthcare professionals directly, whether it’s at home or out in the community. The app matches people based on the requirements of the person needing the support and the professional providing it.”
Making the Right Choice
As the creator of the app points out, Kynd not only utilises technology to create a more efficient service, but also a more personalised one. “The member chooses a person, rather than a business that provides a service. In this way there’s a much better alignment between what the person wants and the service that’s provided and as such the member knows exactly who and what they’re getting. It’s all about them making the right choice for their needs.”
According to Michael the service is a win for both the customer and the health professional. People using Kynd spend considerably less in terms of an average hourly rate and the efficiencies created through the technology allow support workers to earn a lot more than they would working for a provider who is only paying the minimum or award wage. By reducing the overhead costs it works out better for everyone.
“A couple of years ago I would never have thought I’d be working in this space,’ say the app’s founder. “It was only after we had some health issues within my own family that I saw the problems within the industry and the frustrations of getting the right care for individual situations.”
Coming from an entrepreneurial background Michael saw the potential in the local health care sector. “I realised there was a better way to provide support to those who needed it and with an ageing population there’s going to be a greater need for services like Kynd in the future.
“I learnt most of my hard lessons from my first startup in London, which was in the hospitality industry. After four years of blood, sweat and tears I realised what not to do as an entrepreneur. Those lessons became invaluable when we launched Kynd, where I took a much different approach to the venture, like how to make better strategic decisions and how to run a business more efficiently.”
Michael Metcalfe has been living on the Gold Coast for a number of years now and says he never considered establishing the startup anywhere else.
“We have access to technology and great universities here. The way things are changing now through digital nomads and remote workforces it was an easy decision to set up on the Gold Coast. I also believe that we have the right talent available here to further our business as it continues to evolve.”
Kynd has already sourced local talent in the establishment of the enterprise, including marketing, technology and operations staff. “The startup industry is continuing to grow here and ambition is always going to be ahead of reality, which is a good thing. With the advent of the Innovation Hub the local entrepreneurial ecosystem is growing. We’re also seeing things like Bond’s Demo Days and the Startup Onramp which are continuing to bring more people into the space.”
Michael says the key to becoming a successful entrepreneur is to jump in with your ideas as early as possible in life so that you can absorb the hard lessons while you’re still young.
“There’s never been a better time to be alive in terms of access to technology, free tools to get things moving and test your ideas out. It’s all about keeping an open mind to the opportunities out there.
*Michael Metcalfe is a guest speaker at the Somerset Celebration of Entrepreneurship. Full program details here.