Since TechGirlz joined the Creating IT Future’s family of programs in 2019, along with her role as the CMO at Chariot Solutions and serving as a member of the Creating IT Futures’ board, TechGirlz Founder, Tracey Welson-Rossman, has been filling the time she previously spent leading TechGirlz with several other worthwhile projects. We talked with her about her most recent venture.
Tell us about your new venture.
I have launched a company, called Journal My Health, to help people who have Long COVID and other chronic conditions app to chronic conditions tell their health stories. The first product is an app where people can log their symptoms, sleep, medications and therapies. It also integrates with biometric devices, like an Apple Watch, or apps on your phone, like the Weather app, to collect this passive information. The app is able to create charts to compare these variables to see correlations.
Visualizing this information will help with better communication with your healthcare team, create better health outcomes and hopefully create an empowered patient.
Where did the idea come from?
The idea came from my own experience. After being involved in a car accident 20 years ago, unfortunately I started on a journey to solve chronic pain issues. I learned how important it was for me to track my symptoms and other information. These were keys to help my healthcare team diagnose me and then create a treatment plan.
It was many years later that the smartphone came into being and I realized how convenient it would be to have a way to keep all of the information on my phone.
What technology did you use / how did you build it?
I am working in partnership with Chariot Solutions to develop the app. It is currently available for iPhones in the App store and soon for the Play store for Android.
To create the app, we started with a customer journey and research, just like the TechGirlz TechShop, Think like a Designer. That helped the team understand if our potential customers needed the product and also helped us figure out what features were most important to them. Then the team began to create wireframes, just like the TechGirlz Techshop, Designing Mobile Apps. Then our developer began coding in Swift for the iPhone app. He is also using AWS for cloud storage and SQL for our database. Our product designer is continually working on creating a better user experience.
We are not done adding features. We have saved features we want to add based on feedback and research.
The future will have us adding connections to more wearables, like Fitbit, and using Machine Learning tools to create more insights into users symptoms with the data they are inputting.
How did your time with TechGirlz impact launching another new venture?
Like Journal My Health, TechGirlz sprung from a life experience and seeing how I might be able to use technology to innovate a solution.
Just as I outlined in the previous question, I went through a similar process to find if people wanted the product/service, design the idea into a service and then create tests for the service.
TechGirlz showed me that I could go from idea to building a business to acquisition, and all the steps in between. My time showed me how I could build upon my experiences that may not seem to create a new idea.
TechGirlz showed me that I could use tech to solve a problem that I saw in my world, that I could be a woman innovating with tech. And the people who taught me that were between the ages of 10-14.
What do you see next on the horizon?
There is a lot to do for Journal My Health. Short term, I want to grow the number of people using the app and continue to make it a good app to use. I also want to create partnerships with advocacy groups and healthcare groups so they can provide a good way for them to help their patients with chronic conditions. And I want to raise awareness that patients should be able to empower themselves through their own data.
I also hope to show that you can work with tech at any point in your career by talking about this new journey.