Eating our own Dog Food (Or drinking our own champagne!)

Eating our own dog food – or how we used our own transcription service to help us build our team and business. Here at TranscribeMe we are a widely distributed team geographically. Our CEO is currently working from San Francisco building our sales team, our technology and communications teams are based in Auckland and operations is run out of Wellington.

We recently decided to grow our technology team and this meant we would need to find and interview developers. As you may imagine this can be an interesting exercise in logistics aligning four people across three cities and two time zones.

What made this particular experience fun were the short time frames, speed and synchronicities that occurred. Friday we made the decision to expand our technology team. The following Monday we were invited to an evening barbeque by a fellow startup, Slidespeech. There we met Emma from Sway recruitment; she helped Slidespeech with their recent team hires and agreed to work with us.

We arranged to meet Emma early Tuesday morning to go over our requirements. The meeting went really well and Emma rang us on Wednesday morning saying she found a suitable candidate and that he was available to meet first thing Thursday morning.

This did not leave us a great deal of time to arrange to have everyone available to meet in person, or even over Skype. We did however have our own service. The interview with the developer was recorded on our iPhone application, uploaded to our website and sent for transcription. The key points of the interview were then summarized, using our transcription, by one of our team.

This enabled our whole team to participate in the review of the interview. They had three choices. Those pressed for time could simply read the summary notes. If they had more time, they could read the entire transcription. Our CTO was able to listen to the whole interview and gauge the quality of the developer by the questions he asked of us, and also gauge his communication skills.

In the end, we found that we were not ready to hire the developer, but as a team, it was a wonderful opportunity to test our own product and experience the benefits transcription brings to our clients.

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