Kristen Hazard's unique set of skills, commitment to preserving the environment, and sheer grit, have helped her build Wildnote's innovative data collection, management and environmental compliance reporting software. Not only is her software cutting-edge, but also her confidence in fostering a company predominantly lead by women.Success to date has been hard-won. While Hazard imagined the biggest challenge would be developing her app technology, it has in fact been educating potential clients about the benefits of her groundbreaking product. Environmental consultants and field biologists have largely proven to be late adopters of technology, despite the shortcomings of old-school pen and paper surveys.
However, some evangelical early adopters were quick to appreciate how using the app makes environmental compliance projects 40%—80% more efficient and, therefore, much more profitable. They spread the word, paving the way for an impressive set of statistics over the past five years:
- 27,716 environmental reports submitted
- 143,845 survey photos uploaded
- 100,239 field data collection survey forms submitted
Optimizing Environmental Data Management Potential
But spreading the Wildnote message was going to take longer than originally envisaged. Hazard gradually realized that the potential of Wildnote’s environmental data management software could only be achieved with the support of VC investment. Her realization coincided with an opportunity to take part in an accelerator program with the Heritage Group, powered by Techstars.
The Techstars accelerator program was a pivotal experience that helped to shape the direction of the business, and led directly to Seed Round funding from Entrada Ventures and Heritage Group Ventures.
We really see our platform as a way to help the regulated, the regulators and the community; all parties can meet their respective goals to protect the environment.
While Wildnote is committed to making the best field data collection app and expanding this market’s horizons, its strong environmental mission and committed staff have also served to guide the business.
What resonates most strongly for Kristen is that the environmental data collected with the app, and the story it reveals, is more reliable, accessible, and most importantly, actionable. “We really see our platform as a way to help the regulated, the regulators and the community; all parties can meet their respective goals to protect the environment.”
Note: Read John Greathouse's engaging full interview with Wildnote CEO Kristen Hazard on Forbes.com.
Download a PDF version of this article: Kristen Hazard interview with John Greathouse, Forbes
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Image credit: Vanessa Plakias, SLO LIFE Magazine