Anyone who’s somehow become the designated coordinator for pulling together office cakes, cards, and gifts for birthdays, farewells, and other occasions – you know it’s usually the same person every time – knows how time-consuming the task can be, particularly wrangling everyone in the office to sign a card and put in for the gift.
Here to help save time is Where’s the Card, helping users coordinate card buying, signing, and delivery in a big office.
As one might expect, the idea came to Esther Halvey from her own experiences organising group cards for various occasions in the workplace, from birthdays to farewells.
“I always found the process pretty painful and a real time waster; passing a card across multiple floors and buildings and trying to keep track of who had signed it,” she said.
Halvey worked on a number of concepts while completing a course at the Founder Institute, but kept coming back to this idea, keen to create a simple solution to an existing problem.
A user organising a card will head to the website, find the appropriate occasion and card they like, and fill in a form in which they can list the email addresses of those who need to sign a card. If a collection is required for a gift, they can provide bank details for the transfer of funds.
Those whose emails were listed will then receive a notification asking them to go sign the card and contribute any money for a gift, which the card organiser can keep track of by logging into their account or choosing to receive notifications each time someone donates.
Once the number of messages or funding amount is reached, the card will be printed and delivered to the organiser by the specified date, with the funds transferred into their bank account.
Key to the service are the cards themselves and the artwork on them.
“This is an important aspect for me as I see the product offering as not just a time saving and convenient process but also a unique and beautiful card that can be treasured by the recipient,” Halvey said.
She explained she is currently working with a handful of designers to create a boutique range of cards that “fit in with the company’s voice while also offering enough diversity in terms of style and taste”. Artists receive a percentage of sale of a card featuring their artwork.
Costing $20, Halvey said the service is aimed at workplaces of any kind where they may be a “where there is a large group of people who value each other enough to mark life’s special occasions and milestones”.
The company will also create a subscription offering for companies regularly needing cards.
To further expand Where’s the Card’s offering, Halvey said she will be looking at adding gifts for purchase with the card, initially looking at vouches for department stores and later collaborations with florists and chocolatiers.
Where’s the Card is just the latest in a line of startups to launch in the gift space. Sydney platform The Gift Concierge Co has created a personalised gift buying service for those that lack the time or inspiration to do it themselves, while The Gift Collective is an online platform effectively helping someone crowdfund their perfect gift.
Then there’s Thankly, an online platform looking to bring back the old school thank you note by allowing a user to personalise a note online that will then be handwritten and sent on to the recipient, with a small range of gifts also available for customers to send along with the note.
The handwritten factor is what the service is focused on; Where’s the Card, meanwhile, prints its messages.
Competing more directly with Where’s the Card are established players Yellow Postie and Moonpig, which offers personalised cards and mugs. However, these services are focused on cards and gifts being sent by one person rather than a group.
The old school, traditional newsagent is also a competitor, and while the $20 fee charged by Where’s the Card might initially seem a bit steep for a card, a nice one could set you back up to $10, while a larger card to accommodate more messages can cost around $15.
In a big office where birthdays and other occasions seem to come up every few weeks, the time saving for the person who is always stuck with organising the card and gift could be significant.
“My primary goal for the online message collection solution is to offer significant time saving for the organiser and convenience for the signers. I also wanted to make sure that the recipient would receive a unique card, beautifully designed with a high quality finish, printed and delivered to their door. Ultimately I wanted to remove the headache but keep the love,” Halvey said.
Over the coming months, Halvey will be looking to grow Where’s the Card’s customer base and look at expanding its offering.
Image: Esther Halvey. Source: Supplied.