OMAHA, Neb. — Brother and sister in-law Kellee Mikuls and Richard Tom are both parents, both with full-time jobs and they both noticed a gap in the market when it came to finding babysitters. The process of calling around and finding someone they trusted simply took too long.
"People want to trust the people they're inviting into their homes," Tom said.
Mikuls and Tom co-founded an online service that launched this past Sunday called Swishboom.
"Swishboom is an interesting platform and an interesting homegrown startup that was grown out of the need to hire people you trust - but do it efficiently," The Startup Collaborative co-founder Erica Wassinger said.
On Swishboom parents create a profile and add a network of trusted babysitters from friends and family to efficiently post babysitting jobs - so they can have a night out, an efficient day of working from home or simply a few hours to go out and get some air.
"If you have to work from home for two days and you really need undivided attention, you can have a sitter come into your home, watch your kids, and you could be working in your basement," Mikuls said.
Once the babysitting gig is posted, it can get picked up by a trusted babysitter in minutes.
"Versus the game of phone tag you likely play with your own network of sitters the old way," Tom added.
Mikuls and Tom are hoping the company can help the local community and the country with the problem of finding childcare during the pandemic. They also hope it can help young individuals earn some extra cash.
"Young startups really create a lot of new jobs fast and they really set a new standard of what employment looks life," Wassinger said.
Babysitters and parents are asked COVID-19 health screening questions before each babysitting job on the platform.
Swishboom is now offering six months of their subscription for free due to the pandemic.