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  • #987894
    Forensic01
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    Hi all

    So, I have been dabbling in some consultancy work for a little time now (along with a colleague). We have been running it as a business, and not done too badly over the last 18months-but it’s now or never…we’ve decided to take the plunge!

    As of the new financial year, we will be a company…and this will be my ‘job’. The background is that my field of work has changed a lot in the last few years, to the point where the job I once loved is no longer there anymore. But, there is a huge gap in the market. I come from the uk where it is standard practice in the criminal justice system for expert opinion(in my case-forensic biology) to be reviewed by an independent party. Here in Australia, this rarely (if ever happens). So, we have decided to try and fill this gap.

    So far I have been loving the little bit of work we get. We have been trying to get the word out there that we now exist, and the feedback has been great-with repeat business coming our way. However, with full time jobs to contend with it has been tough. But now, myself and my business partner will be throwing our all into it!

    I expect to have to take the good with the bad-but ultimately, doing what I love, as well as being able to fit it around my kids is really the dream. So fingers crossed it works out. And if not-hey, you don’t know if you don’t try!

    If you are interested-here is our website: http://www.independentforensicservices.com.au

    :-)

    #1164753
    Wordsmith
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    Hi and welcome to Flying Solo – this must be a nervous and exciting time for you!
    Just wanted to say, this is probably the most unique and interesting small business I have seen crop up on the forums. Really enjoying your website too – very easy to navigate and practical.
    Kindest
    Kirsty

    #1164754
    Forensic01
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    Wordsmith, post: 190604 wrote:
    Hi and welcome to Flying Solo – this must be a nervous and exciting time for you!
    Just wanted to say, this is probably the most unique and interesting small business I have seen crop up on the forums. Really enjoying your website too – very easy to navigate and practical.
    Kindest
    Kirsty

    Thanks Kirsty for your kind words!

    If you know any lawyers who work in criminal law, feel free to pass on my details! ;-)

    #1164755
    RICHSTUDENT
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    Hi there,

    I went to your website and I saw mobile phones were displayed as contact methods.. Found it to be slightly unprofessional in terms of a forensic service company.

    Perhaps you could invest in a “virtual office” along with a virtual 1800/1300 number, for just penny bucks ~$50 or more per month (pay per call received, depending on how busy your services are), they have virtual receptionists who will direct your calls.

    Also, try to provide some value by providing free trial services to your potential clients. Get them interested in your services, you could undercut your competitors, and use that as your POS.

    Perhaps the main concern among your clients are your company’s reliability and trust.

    Let me ask you a question: what can you do in order for your potential clients to trust you as a reliable source?

    To Your Success,

    Dave

    #1164756
    Forensic01
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    Thanks for your feedback Dave – I appreciate your time!

    You have absolutely hit the nail on the head – for our line of work, it is absolutely key that we come across as professional and reliable. The most credible way to achieve that is to be accredited – but for us that is out of the question as costs tens of thousands of dollars a year. That said – we do adhere to the same rigors as an accredited lab, and this is all documented in our quality manual/procedures documents. We don’t really talk about this on our website, as we don’t want to draw attention to the fact that we aren’t accredited – but maybe we need to think about a smart way to this address this. Do you have any thoughts on that?

    There are certainly other things we can do though – and as you mention, using a virtual office assistant may be a good thing to try. On the one hand – lawyers want a direct line to us, as they are busy people, often working on a very tight deadline – so they just want to be able to get hold of us. BUT, that said, perhaps a fixed land line number would look much more professional, so I will re-visit that idea.

    We have tried offering a couple of hours free to new customers – but haven’t had any uptake. Again – something for us to re-visit.

    The biggest thing we have learnt so far (and it took us a while to figure this out) is that a lawyer isn’t going to just google “Forensic expert”, and then trust us as experts. We have actually had most success with Linked In..I guess because they can see who we are connected with…and our experience is in some way supported by our connections. Word of mouth really is how our business is going to grow! We are planning on having some presence at large conferences this year, such as the International Criminal Law Congress in Melbourne – as we know face to face meetings are our best opportunity to drum up some business.

    Anyway, once again. Thanks for your input!

    Cheers

    Helen

    #1164757
    Forensic01
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    Just an update – on monday I resigned from my permanent job (which was a conflict of interest with my business)…so I am now a full time soloist! Well – techincally I am on ‘maternity leave’ but I guess there’s no such thing when you are a small business owner – right?!

    So excited to get stuck into it!

    :-)

    #1164758
    Stuart B
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    I only have 1 question… Is it the best being a CSI?!?!?!?! :D

    #1164759
    Anonymous
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    Forensic01, post: 191313 wrote:
    Just an update – on monday I resigned from my permanent job (which was a conflict of interest with my business)…so I am now a full time soloist! Well – techincally I am on ‘maternity leave’ but I guess there’s no such thing when you are a small business owner – right?!

    So excited to get stuck into it!

    :-)

    Congratulations Helen! That is so exciting :)

    Love your work,
    Jayne

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