Inspiring Women in Healthtech: Meet Tatjana Golubovic of MyWorkMode

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Jemima Heard
February 23, 2021

Tatjana Golubovic is the founder MyWorkMode and a member of our SimDH programme. MyWorkMode is an innovative platform for carers in need of clients, and clients in need of carers.

On top of founding a new tech company, Tatjana is also involved in creating new qualifications and training programmes that support the knowledge and skill development of carers and nurses. It is through this work that she was able to hear the needs of overworked, undervalued care workers, and come up with MyWorkMode.

Why MyWorkMode is innovative

MyWorkMode has the potential to be as disruptive to the care sector as Uber has been to the taxi industry, except MyWorkMode takes much better care of its' workers.

MyWorkMode empowers carers through:

  • Paying them 100% of their earnings, compared to agencies, which can take as much as 50% commission
  • Charging lower booking fees than agencies
  • Providing real-time availability - so if carers need to work, now, they can, and if a care provider needs staff, they can book them instantly
  • Showing carer availability in real-time.

This also benefits care organisations. Adult social care spending accounts for more than one-third of councils' overall spending on local services. Lower procurement costs for care workers will allow tight budgets to be better allocated.

Additionally, because 84% of employees in the sector are women, MyWorkMode has a unique opportunity to help lead the fight again the sector's Gender Pay Gap by enabling female nurses and carers to work more flexible hours.

Tatjana kindly agreed to tell us more about MyWorkMode and her journey as a woman in the Healthtech sector.

Thanks for joining us, Tatjana! Please tell us a little about yourself?

I came to England from Yugoslaviain 1989 soon after I graduated, intending to improve my English, learn aboutthe culture, travel for a year to expand my horizons and then return to do mypostgraduate studies.  Instead, I fell in love with this country and its people and have stayed here ever since. Looking back to my first years here I was always ready to try new things and continue learning without realising that this approach would stand me in good stead one day. It led me to start my own training company in 2012 and more recently create MyWorkMode.

Brilliant - can you describe your innovation in a sentence? 

MyWorkMode connects vetted and rated healthcare workers with care providers and individuals for affordable, tailored care cover when and where it is needed.

So how did you discover the issue that MyWorkMode addresses?

Back in 2002 when I was working as a care manager, I first experienced the problem that prevails to this day, affecting most care providers and users of care services and has developed into one of the biggest unresolved issues facing the healthcare sector today. I am talking about staffing or more specifically understaffing, as current figures show there are over 80,000 unfulfilled job roles in the sector.

You joined the SimDH accelerator late last year. What have you achieved so far? 

A month after joining, I was taking part in many informative and interactive workshops and webinars aimed at addressing issues facing health tech entrepreneurs. I had introductions as well as one-to-one meetings with several of the sector’s experts who have offered valuable feedback and inspired new ideas.

The interface of MyWorkMode's profile set-up for carers.
What has been a challenge or an obstacle in your product development?

As with most start-ups, this has to be the limited funding available, especially to female founders. I had to use all of my savings to make the business happen. The majority of this was spent on the platform and website development. Although many entrepreneurs encounter difficulties relating to the designing and/or building of their products, my experience was opposite. I was fortunate to have worked with an excellent digital solutions company who completely understood my ideas and specific requirements and made the creation of the platform a breeze, without any hiccups!

What are the benefits of working with SBI/LSBU for you?

The ability to validate the platform, access the University’s resources and networks, to create new connections and open doors to possible collaborations with other entrepreneurs have, to date, been the greatest benefits for me.

You worked closely with nurses and carers through your skills training sessions. How did this experience help you develop MyWorkMode?

I'm still involved, but to a lesser extent now, in creating new qualifications and training programmes for nurses and carers. Listening to countless carers complain about feeling undervalued and overworked, to the extent that so many of them were on the brink of resignation, was the catalyst in developing my product. Similarly, many managers shared the fact that they are never provided with the right tools or the funds to address the staff shortages.  I immediately realised that the current solutions are either overpriced, favour one party, do not adequately reward the healthcare workers for their hard work and are certainly not a viable long-term solution.  And this made me develop the MyWorkMode platform.

What’s next for you and your business?

The next step is to raise money to enable us not only to add the nurses and other allied health professionals to the platform, but also to enhance functionality which will increase our client base even further and allow us to become a one stop solution for recruitment and development of healthcare staff in the UK and beyond.

Interface for MyWorkMode from the Client's view.
What is your top tip for women developing new products?

Do your research to find out if your idea will help a current or future need and if so, start building your product. Remember to get a few of your target clients on board at the early stages of the product’s development. Lastly, surround yourself with people you can trust. You will need them.

How would you describe your experience as a woman in business or a woman in STEM?

I can’t say it has been easy. I found that, even though there has been progress in making women in STEM feel better supported, through initiatives like SBI, Incubators, Women in Innovation etc, it is still very much a male dominated field. I would have liked to have had some female mentors when I started as we women approach business slightly differently and offer additional perspectives that men folk do not always see!  Don’t get me wrong, I have always been very happy with the male mentors I have had, but if we are to encourage more women to join the tech world there must be more of us not only in leadership roles, but in investment as well.

What do you think is the most important issue that tech entrepreneurs should be addressing?

Real problems. Using technology to improve lives of ordinary people in areas such as health and well-being, the environment and education. There is so much more that we can be innovating in these areas to make a difference.

How do you imagine innovation helping women?

I can see how the tide is starting to change. Women are nowadays beginning to innovate products designed solely for women to help them organise their tasks better, overcome female health related problems and allow them to juggle work and home at the same time. By increasing the investment into female run businesses and celebrating their success stories, we will be encouraging more young women become future leaders, scientists and innovators.  

Finally, which woman, living or dead, would you invite to dinner and why?

Valentina Tereshkova. She was the first and youngest woman to fly into space. I would like to know whether she just took the unexpected opportunity into the unknown or whether she simply succeeded in making a childhood dream come true.

Find out more about MyWorkMode through their website.