Many parents have been there: it’s time to pay the babysitter but then realize they have no cash. A new mobile app called CluckCluck can solve the problem.
After having long discussions about balancing work and family life over the years, CluckCluck co-founders Heather Estenson Joyce and Heather Matzkin came up with the app idea after Joyce became frustrated trying to find a babysitter.
(jump to: 3:18) “We were sending overlapping texts to multiple people, and it [was] just … a total mess. … [That’s when] I turned to her and said, ‘why isn’t there an app for this?,’” Joyce told PYMNTS.com in a recent podcast interview.
The two women are longtime friends who practiced law together at the same firm, and later at the Walt Disney Co. Both are now married and have a combined five children.
Because the two already were working as technology attorneys, they were able to come up with the basic framework needed to create the app. To them, this was a service necessary for working families. Moreover, they noticed more consumers becoming dependent on making payments with cards and mobile wallets. So far Joyce says that she is already receiving positive feedback.
(jump to: 8:36) “We are finding that people are excited about it because no one has cash anymore,” Joyce said.
Babysitter services such as Care.com and UrbanSitter may also exist, but what sets CluckCluck apart is that it not only offers a way for parents to communicate with sitters, but they also can pay them. The app is designed specifically for know babysitters, so there is no search service feature.
With CluckCluck, parents enter their favorite list of babysitters. When they need a sitter, they send an invitation to the list. They also can use the app to communicate with the sitter while the person is caring for their children. The company would eventually like to create a video feature for the app.
When the time comes to pay the sitter, a parent pays using the app via PayPal. (jump to 9:08) “We chose PayPal because it is the most universally adopted at this point, but we are also keeping an eye out for these other companies in the payments area to look for things that are even easier,” Joyce said.
CluckCluck charges a 99 cents per transaction, and parents may export transaction information for tax purposes.
CluckCluck eventually hopes to add child care services as app users. (jump to: 10:52) “We [would] love to see some version of CluckCluck in daycare facilities so parents can get real time updates as well,” Joyce said.
Although the app focuses on children, CluckCluck may expand its services to animals by creating a WoofWoof app. According to Joyce, she knows a lot of pet parents who are always seeking care for dogs.