I’m the founder and CEO of ParaPer4mance. I was paralyzed in a car accident and, when I came out of the hospital, I realized there were no available resources for individuals with disabilities. This inspired me to found ParaPer4mance, a company that creates adapted solutions for individuals with mobility impairments. We provide access to scalable programs designed by professionals as a way to overcome the barriers and financial constraints that prevent these individuals from accessing hospital programs.
We started off with a website in August of 2019. We received positive feedback and I wanted to build it further to really build a community and a brand. I started to think about the idea of an app to reach my audience faster and learn about their needs. Products are not usually designed for individuals with mobility impairments, except when it comes to medical-grade items. We wanted to bring a different approach to it as far as building a community and really focusing on their needs and the voids within society, so we hired asap to build an app that took all of this into consideration. Our goals were to reach a wider audience, connect with the community and gather data to better create solutions for our users.
I chose asap after having interviews with six different companies. I’m a business major by trade so tech is not my strong suit. Someone advised me on what to look out for, but I went off based on the connection I felt. I discussed the vision and scope of the project with Pablo and the marketing/sales team and I felt they understood the passion behind the project. I felt that, while for other companies it was just another job, asap connected with the brand and helped build on areas I didn’t know were possible. They helped bring my idea into reality because they were standing behind my purpose and mission and I did not get that same feel with the other companies.
asap provided us with an app whose main feature is building a global community, starting in the United States. The MPV includes access to programs on mental health, nutrition, fitness and activities on daily living, designed by licensed professionals. It’s a rehabilitation service to help our users improve their quality of life.
The platform is free, but it includes the ParaPoint digital currency to motivate the community. As they engage with the app, build their community and friend network, and watch free content, they build their ParaPoint wallet which grants them access to higher-level programs. There’s free content, but as it becomes more premium, you need the ParaPoints to unlock it to motivate users to get engaged and be active in the community.
Regarding the team, I initially met with Pablo and then worked with a member of the design team and Victoria from marketing. I worked heavily with Gonzalo, the IT manager, and the frontend and backend designers.
Each team member had their own personality and I felt comfortable throughout the whole process. It was a very easy experience and it helped me learn about the technical aspect of the company and everything going on in the backend. I felt very involved in the process, everything was very transparent.
The project management was great except for one specific issue. I felt that there was not enough time between the release of one sprint and the beginning of the next one. It was distracting to be fixing issues from the previous sprint at the same time as working on the next one. Other than that, everything was great, I just think there should be a grace period between sprints.
The MVP has helped us move to the next level because the website didn’t fully portray where we were going. We are currently trying to raise funding and the MVP has helped us get interest from investors as they can now see what we are bringing to the table. We have just applied for an accelerated program through Snapchat, made it to the top 30 out of hundreds of applications and are in the second round of decisions to see if we make it to the top 10. Then, we’ll seed investment for $150,000 to be able to further build our product.
Also, we have just finished beta testing and received good feedback from the 60 users that tested the app and we will be using that to continue to build on it.
What do you like most about the company?
They have a very talented team with great personalities. For me, it was an easy process and when we go back to working on the app (we’re planning on redesigning, rebuilding and adding more features), I’m not planning to shop around. I’ll definitely continue to work with asap.
What they should improve on?
Just the grace period between sprints to focus on bug fixing because, specifically as a startup, it’s distracting to go into the next stage with issues of the previous one still unresolved. But other than that I can’t think of any changes or adjustments.
App Designing (UI/UX)