Owners: Lauren Anne Cole (Vice President), Keith D. Petty (President), Robert Dickey (Software Developer)
Year Started: 2017
Location: Farmington and Cape Girardeau
Number of Employees: 9
Advice for other entrepreneurs: “Always give everyone else the credit for every success. This allows your employees to take pride in the outcome. It doesn’t matter if you get any of the credit, it matters that your team succeeds and your employees are motivated to keep working their tails off towards company goals and objectives! This builds the value of the company as a whole, which is your true objective not the credit itself.” – Lauren
How it all began.
As employees of separate companies, Keith and Lauren had been competing for Video Surveillance, Access Control, and Telecommunications projects at schools across Missouri. Over the years, they learned there was one time of day to never call during: dismissal time. Every school is in complete chaos as children are released; there are notes being passed throughout the school, kids being shuffled in every direction, loudspeaker announcements roaring in classrooms, and confusion. The pair challenged this status quo and recognized orderly dismissals as a need in the market. Given their shared experience and resources, they decided to team up with Keith’s Software Developer Robert to solve it. These three created KIDaccount to solve the problem of accounting for each child on campus including their release. The implications of their software solution have since grown to affect daily processes and campus safety for elementary, middle, and high schools across Missouri, including the 1st, 3rd and 9th largest schools in the state.
More new partnerships.
Dr. Cherry, a Marketing Professor at Southeast Missouri State University, invited KIDaccount in spring 2017 to participate in his class’ practicum market research project. The marketing students polled over 250 Cape Girardeau parents, teachers, and administrators about how they value safety, accountability, and efficiency related to the student dismissal process. After beginning to pilot the program across Missouri, Lauren hired Emily Clark from the marketing class as a full-time intern. Another student from the class was Courtney Beattie, a student worker at the Small Business and Technology Development Center (SBTDC). Courtney encouraged Lauren to compete in the local Small Business Administration (SBA) InnovateHER pitch competition. After winning the competition, Lauren worked with Courtney and Kayla Ray at the SBTDC on a professional business plan to grow the business. KIDaccount was then able to use the plan to obtain necessary R&D funding from a private investor.
Uniquely prepared to help.
In response to the number of recent school shootings, KIDaccount shifted its focus from efficiency and accountability to an extremely robust school safety platform. The team has been working with schools across Missouri and first responders to develop, test, and implement innovative security tools and solutions. Their technology is web-based and runs on schools’ existing hardware, making their solutions affordable. KIDaccount’s client base is growing exponentially as they continually work to develop new products to serve the safety, accountability, and efficiency needs of schools across the nation.
“Teamwork makes the dreamwork”.
For the three founders, each day starts with a “Daily Motivational”. These communications boost team morale and reinforce KIDaccount’s corporate culture of continued growth and development even when faced with challenges. In addition to the startup’s core objective to keep kids safe at school, they care for the wellbeing of each team member, whom the success of the company is built on every single day.
For more information on KIDaccount, visit their website at kidaccount.com.
For more information on the SBTDC or to make an appointment with one of our counselors, go to our Businesses page.