Getting serious about GetSignOff

In October 2008 Headscape launched Getsignoff, a tool to help web designers get design approval. Like all startups we made some mistakes, but 2010 is our chance to set things right.

Like many web applications Getsignoff was started as a side project. It was built alongside our existing web design business with the hope that it might one day become an additional revenue stream.

To be honest it was an experiment. We had no idea whether it would succeed or fail. We didn’t really plan strategically for its development.

In reality it did neither. It has done ‘okay’. It generates reasonable income but has not been a run away success. We are however convinced that it has a lot more potential than has been realised.

Screenshot from GetSignoff

The shortcomings of a side project

So why has Getsignoff not reached its potential? We believe the problem is that it has always been a side project. We have never been fully committed to it. The problem with this is two fold:

The application has never received the investment in time and money it needed. There was nobody driving the product forward, developing new features and promoting it within the community. It was always fitted in around other work on the rare occasions time could be found.

It was perceived as a side project by potential users. We weren’t engaging with the community in the way we should have been. We weren’t demonstrating a long term commitment to the product that users expect. To many it appeared to be either dead or abandoned.

The irony of this is that these are exactly the kind of pitfalls we warn our clients to avoid. We constantly talk about investing in your websites long term and having a website owner to drive the site forward.

Fortunately we are finally addressing these shortcomings.

Welcoming Ryan Taylor to the team

We are pleased to announce that Headscape will be taking on Ryan Taylor to be Getsignoff’s product champion for an initial 6 month period (although we are hopeful this can be extended).

Ryan has been the driving force behind the Boagworld Podcast for some time now as well as his own show ‘Please Start From The Beginning‘. He is an accomplished designer and well known within the web design community. He is ideally placed to develop Getsignoff and ensure it meets the needs of the design community.

Screenshot from Ryan's Website

Give Ryan a head start

Although Ryan will not be joining us until the 1st of February, we are hoping he can hit the ground running. We are therefore asking you to share your thoughts on Getsignoff, both good and bad. Have you used the service? If not, why not? If you have used the service, where did it fall down and how can we improve it?

Post your thoughts in the comments below.

P.S. We are still looking for a .net developer to work alongside Ryan on Getsignoff.

  • http://www.coffeepowered.co.uk Stanton

    Congratulations Ryan! All the best in this new venture!

  • http://www.freeagentcentral.com Roan Lavery

    Congratulations Ryan! Sounds like a great job and opportunity. Have fun!

  • http://replete.nu Phil Ricketts

    Great news! Looking forward to seeing how you get on in 2010.

  • http://www.d3i.com Oliver Waters

    Congrats Ryan! Lots to look forward to for 2010. Give me a shout if you need a beta tester ;)

  • http://cargowire.net Craig Rowe

    Looking forward to having you, you’re going to be down 3 days a week yeh? ;-)

  • http://www.gradualism.co.uk Emily Heath

    Congratulations to Ryan, and well done to Headscape for listening to your own advice, better late than never!

    I did have a play around with Get Sign Off but never used it with a client. This is because I have trouble convincing both my designer, and clients, that using online web apps (like Basecamp) to manage projects is worth the hassel (hassel being remembering to log in, let alone remembering what their login actually is!). (Its worth noting at this point we are only a 2 person company.)

    One thought I did have is that I’m considering setting up my own client management area and if I could integrate Getsignoff into that I might have a better chance of convincing the team to use it. So if there was an API available that would probably open it up to a wider audience.

    Just checked the pricing… If the middle band could include the basecamp integration then that would make it more appealing to my size of business.

  • http://www.atomworks.co.uk Leonard

    Nice one Ryan!

    I’m not a GetSignOff user myself as much as I’d like to be! Although GetSignOff looks like a great tool what has put me off getting on it (even so much that I’ve passed up the free account) is the pricing structure.

    I’m (at this time moment in time at least) a fairly low turnover freelancer and the prospect of having to fork out $29 a month on top of my existing outgoings just doesn’t appeal to me even though GetSignOff does. Unless its a feasible option for me I don’t want to touch a free account, like it and then have to forget about it! :D

    Also, it’d be nice to be able to see the prices in pounds!

  • http://www.ralphwilliams.com Ralph Williams

    It’s great to hear that you are taking this product to the next level!

    Our 3 man firm has been using it for about a year now, and we love it. Albeit, there could be some improvements, this has really helped with our communicating with our clients. We use it to get design approval, full site approval, as well as using it for internal Quality Assurance in the final web site. This has already been a great tool and we look forward to seeing some new developments!

    Ralph

  • http://www.webcoursesbangkok.com Carl – Web Courses Bangkok

    Congrats to Ryan, who I thought wanted to go Freelance for a while :) I am sure he will do a fantastic job for GetSignOff

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  • http://www.facebook.com/mauricio.wolff Mauricio Wolff

    I went to http://getsignoff.com and got an Apache welcome page…

    • Anonymous

      That is because we sold Get Sign Off sometime ago and it has been rolled into another product. It does however surprise me they haven’t forwarded the URL.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mauricio.wolff Mauricio Wolff

    I went to http://getsignoff.com and got an Apache welcome page…

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