We’ve gone through an entire transformation here at Hacker Lab. This month concludes a full 90 days of strategy and implementation from our Growth Hacking team. The last two blogs gave you an in-depth look at the initial strategy and the tangible changes that followed afterwards. In the same time space, we’ve been working on important initiatives that are more behind the scenes, at least for now. Here are some behind the scene things we’ve been doing to keep our growth momentum rolling in the correct direction.
New Class Calendar Structure & Class Tracks
This one has been tricky and has taken the most time. We’ve started making waves on this so we’re ready to let you guys know what’s up. Starting in the fall, we’ll be adding more basic makerspace classes to our calendar.
Introducing Weekly Classes: We’re planning to launch a weekly class schedule that includes (for now): 3D printing, laser cutter, 2D design, 3D modelling, and vinyl cutter.
By increasing the frequency of our class offerings, we’re hoping to allow members and non-members more opportunities for taking a class they need. This strategy will also keep class sizes smaller and in general, help you improve your making skills in a shorter amount of time.
Regular Weekend Classes & Hours: We’re learning that our members want more classes on the weekend and our Saturday classes have been packed. We’re also starting to staff more weekend hours - thank you for choosing to spend your weekends with us!
Class Tracks and Digital Certification: Also launching in the fall will be our class tracks. We’ll help you stay organized by creating a logical series of classes for you to pursue. These track will help you stay organized and help you align to your growth trajectory. After completing all classes in an designated track, you’ll be given the option of completing a project and receive digital certification.
Open Studio Hours: WIth the introduction of class tracks, we’re also going to begin scheduling instructors for open studio hours. These open studio hours will be free for members and is a new service we’re offering to help with member growth. This will allow members access to connect with mentors who can truly help sharpen your knowledge and skills. Work on your own projects with someone who can help you during open studio hours.
RAILS Scholarship Program: In addition, we’re especially excited to be hosting our soon-to-be new members, a cohort of 50 artists, through this years RAILS Grant: Creative Enterprise Scholarship Program. This scholarship program will recruit makers through our partners, M5 Arts, Sol Collective, and Sacramento City College Makerspace.
Not going to exaggerate here… but you guys are AMAZING and we’re been receiving a flood of survey responses. Since launching the surveys early last month, we’ve received and are now processing over 150 surveys. There’s a lot of good stuff in there about what we’re doing but also a lot of good stuff on what we could improve. Overall you guys gave us 8.3 points out of 10. Seeing as how we didn’t have any expectations as to what any of you would say, this is pretty great news for us. We hear all of you and want to say thank you, we’re working on it, please keep talking to us about what you want and need. We’re in this to see everyone grow so thank you for helping us grow too.
From the first month, we were able to diagram out our customer lifecycle (growth framework) and understand the flow in which our members would move through our services, engage with our community, and their journey towards fine tuning a skill or growing a business. We started to understand what the magic moments were and that’s when we realized, we’re not getting you to your magic moment fast enough. We were able to identify that this delay came from having holes in our customer service and operations teams. If not properly care for, some members could fall into these lifecycle holes and become very dissatisfied. We narrowed in on what tasks could be dispersed to current team members but were still left with the recognition that our team needed to grow.
With that, you probably already know that we’re hiring. We’ve created new positions, more dynamic in their role so that these individuals are equipped with the knowledge, tools, and know-how to get you moving through your growth trajectory.
Makerspace Support Staff: This is our most dynamic position. This person will engage with all aspects of Hacker Lab's customer facing operations. From working on the front desk and providing tours to teaching makerspace classes, this person will have the opportunity to train under our Makerspace Manager in order to become proficient at teaching and repairing makerspace tools. We're looking for someone with a great personality, flexible schedule, and eagerness to learn how to teach.
Makerspace Assistant: If you're still in school, don’t have much experience but want a career in makerspaces, coworking spaces, or making — this is a position that can grow with you. This person will engage with members, general public, and makerspace staff. You’ll learn how to run a front desk, provide tours, and learn how to maintain the coworking space. We're looking for someone with a great personality, flexible schedule, and excitement for making.
Familiarity with makerspaces is an obvious plus but we're just looking for someone that wants to grow and become an expert in what their good at already. Grit and honesty go a long way here at Hacker Lab.
For more information or questions on position applications, please email [email protected]
Thanks for reading about this. We want to keep our community engaged and active with our progress. We’re always open to comments, advice, suggestions, and whatever good vibes you want to throw our way. Check back in next month to read about our progress and see what we’re working on next!
For some of those that may need a bit of a background, Hacker Lab is a makerspace that also offers coworking, classes, and meetups, is a gallery space, and community hub for makers, entrepreneurs, and startups. Our original slogan was, “Build. Code. Unite.” Throughout the past 5 years, Hacker Lab has been proud to be the catalyst for Sacramento’s startup growth trend. We now have over 500 members, host over 200 classes a year, and run two locations with over 25k sq. ft. of makerspace offering high-end prototyping tools and machines. Through work with our partners, Hacker Lab is actively helping to shape Sacramento’s economic climate with startup driven initiatives.