Phyxter: AI for Independent Contractors in the Skilled Trades Industry
Jake Gibson grew up with a skilled trades family. His father owned a business in the skilled trades and his brother followed suit. After Jake graduated from University, he too entered into the skilled trades working as a Journeyman before moving to the sales side of the industry. That’s when he began noticing the inefficiencies that business owners, contractors, and freelancers experience on a daily basis. Although there were numerous business management tools available to business owners, Jake noticed a general avoidance of them among independent contractors. He wondered if there was a way to build a new platform that would better serve the specific needs of skilled trades business owners. Jake knew that business owners, like his father and brother, wore too many hats on a daily basis. Without the help of an easy-to-use, intuitive, business management tool, the work days and hours would keep piling up. He started thinking of a solution, which ultimately led to the creation of Phyxter.
Phyxter is a mobile platform that uses artificial intelligence and behavioral science to maximize profit by providing independent contractors with a virtual business partner. The platform is built specifically for independent contractors who desire both profitability and a healthy work-life balance. Simply put, Phyxter helps business owners work less, work smarter, and make more money.
Jake was still living in Utah as a successful sales manager when an advisor suggested that he apply to an incubator/ accelerator to assist in building Phyxter, noting that there were plenty of great options in Ontario. After careful consideration of various programs, Jake was most interested in the Accelerator Center because of their program structure. He applied immediately and was accepted, which meant leaving his career and moving back home to Canada. A big decision, for sure, but he knew it was the right one. Jake was thrilled about his new venture, he had the support of his friends and family, and he now had the Accelerator Centre program to help guide the way.
“The phased approach to business development, a curriculum with step-by-step guidance, milestones to work toward and mentor feedback is exactly the way I like to do things. I love learning and I love that the AC had their program set up for people who want to continually learn and grow. So, I applied and after I was accepted I quit my job in Utah and moved back to Ontario to take my shot at the entrepreneurial dream.”
After Jake moved to Toronto and found a co-founder and CTO in long-time friend Ben Fagan, Phyxter officially incorporated in May of 2017. Phyxter has evolved since its inception into a platform that merges artificial intelligence with behavioral science in order to mimic an experienced business partner. It allows independent contractors in the skilled trades service industry to automate their workflows, help them with their daily business decisions to get positive results, and increases their productivity so they can go home earlier or find additional profitable work, whichever they desire. More than a collection of features, Phyxter will be the smartest way for independent contractors to be more productive at work, to provide the highest quality service, and to have more time and money to do the things they love.
Jake describes the experience of building the company so far as incredible.
“We are having an absolute blast! The learning curve is huge – the community is so supportive, and the ecosystem in Ontario is perfect for learning and growing”
The leadership team started by completing thorough rounds of market research to fully understand the problem they aim to solve, then they moved into product development and are currently performing user testing. They anticipate launching near the end of 2018. The current team consists of Jake, Ben, a team of three developers, and a handful of knowledgeable and experienced advisors.
In 2018, the team is looking forward to beta-testing the MVP product and getting additional feedback from business owners. They’re also looking forward to launching the product, fundraising, and continuing to develop strategic partnerships. They have already solidified a number of aligned partnerships with companies that provide value-add benefits for platform users which reach beyond their tech.
Jake reflects on his inspiration and the core of the company’s values,
“My father was an entrepreneur, and my brother is one now…so if we can build a product that not only helps him to be more successful but also one that he’ll actually use then we’ll have succeeded. There are a lot of things we have to build to get this done and build them in a way that’s truly inviting. It’s important for all of us to always remember that we’re building this for independent contractors, so before every decision we make we need to ask ourselves three questions; do our customers need this, will they use it, and most importantly would our mothers be proud of us for making this decision. In the end we want to give something to entrepreneurs that will help them succeed, whether their definition is that they want to make more money or that they want to spend more quality time with their family, whatever it is Phyxter believes that technology should empower them to do it.”
Being a business owner or independent contractor can be an exciting but stressful job, and Phyxter’s mission is to remove the stress and maximize the excitement by giving business management tools an overhaul in the best possible way.
To learn more or discuss a partnership with Phyxter, please visit: https://www.phyxter.ai/