George Tasick

Marketing/Product Development, Fireworks Industry

19

5

EXplosive: Online EX Application Wizard

I've been working in the US fireworks industry for about 15 years.

One of the biggest headaches for the entire fireworks industry is getting these little hazardous materials ID numbers called "EX numbers". They're issued by a branch of The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) called the "Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration" ... or PHMSA.

The application process is fairly simple, but poorly defined. There is no one method or standardized application. This leads to confusion on the part of the applicant and even more confusion on PHMSA's end. They're inundated with about 4000 of these non-standardized applications per year (only 6 people review these applications for approval) and the lack of standardization leads to long processing times, rejected applications and a lot of frustration for everyone.

Life would be so much easier if there was some sort of online, browser based "wizard" that walked the applicant through the application process, spit out a cleanly filled PDF form and maintained all records in "the cloud".

I like to refer to this app as "Turbo Tax for EX applications". In the same way that Turbo Tax's online software walks you through tax preparation, my program would walk applicants through the EX application process.

For now, I'm calling this software "EXplosive: Online EX Application Wizard".

I know what the product needs to do, I know how it should function, I know who to sell it to, I have a constant presence in the industry and have a continuing relationship with PHMSA and DOT.

What I don't know how to do is write code, develop a web based piece of software, or setup/manage all the database/payment systems.

I paid for this course because it specifically said that I could start a business "without spending another dollar (or needing a tech co-founder)”.

So that's what I’m here to learn.

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