The on-demand online booking platform for healthcare professionals is pursuing an international growth strategy.
Belfast software SME Locate a Locum is investing more than £1.3m in research and development with support from Invest NI.
This investment will create 14 new jobs, growing the team at Locate a Locum to more than 40 people.
Recruitment is underway immediately, with job opportunities for software engineers, marketing and account managers and sales executives.
Locate a Locum’s online booking platform for healthcare professionals currently services more than 8,000 pharmacies across the UK, including Boots, Superdrug and Lloyds. The platform has more than 12,000 registered locum pharmacists, which it claims is the largest pool of locum pharmacists in the UK.
The company recently added automated payment functionality to the platform and is now investing in new product development to diversify its offering to include health and social care workers, opticians and dentists.
The new team members will help Locate a Locum on this growth strategy, expanding the product and growing in new export markets such as Canada, South Africa and Australia.
“Innovation is crucial to the growth of our business. This latest investment in automated payment functionality through our end-to-end workforce management platform is our most ambitious product development to date,” said Jonny Clarke, CEO and founder of Locate a Locum.
“Payments to locums are still processed manually so there is a gap in the market for a full service. The benefit of this is obvious, especially in the current times.”
Both the recent and future developments of the platform have been supported by Invest NI, Northern Ireland’s regional economic development agency.
Invest NI has worked closely with Locate a Locum since 2017, when the company had just two employees. Of the latest investment, Invest NI will provide more than £230,000 of support.
“Invest Northern Ireland’s support has been invaluable since we started out. Its recent support is helping us to develop our platform so that we can service pharmacy customers more effectively and look beyond it to help other areas of the healthcare sector revolutionise the way they manage their workforce. We are already seeing success in the care home sector, and have secured multiple deals,” said Clarke.
Dr Vicky Kell, director of innovation, research and development at Invest NI, said: “This latest investment will help it to develop a more comprehensive package for existing clients and drive sales in new markets, and it is already seeing success in Northern Ireland. The new software functionality will help multiple professions across the healthcare sector to work more effectively during the pandemic. The jobs will also help to rebuild our local economy, contributing over £530,000 in additional annual salaries.”