Ken Gillette and Peter Murphy were co-workers at Lockheed Martin in Orlando, Florida. With advanced leadership roles in the Performance Management division, they were responsible for leading quality improvement and employee engagement initiatives which saved the corporation millions of taxpayer dollars each year. As co-workers from different manufacturing backgrounds, they clicked instantly and worked cohesively as a team. Ken’s background as a supervisor and Peter’s as a supply chain manager meshed perfectly.
Peter was studying for the APICS CPIM certification, which consists of five grueling production management exams. Each exam costs around $500 to attempt and several more thousands in prep materials. The two were baffled at the costs of bettering one’s professional career. Would a hefty personal investment really pay off in terms of promotions and raises in the long run? Ken and Peter realized that they wanted to do something to help people around the world earn certifications without sacrificing thousands of dollars. They decided to take the plunge and start a business together.
Given the mounting expenses Peter faced with earning his CPIM credential, they decided to develop apps that would help people better prepare for high-stakes exams. Their goal was to make the apps affordable so that self-improvement wasn’t such a lofty undertaking. In January 2011, Ken and Peter bootstrapped a combined $1,800 and did as much in-house work as possible in order to maximize the investment. This included graphic design, content generation, and digital marketing, which were all self-taught skills. Peter worked directly with CPIM instructors to turn his study notes and practice questions into a viable product. Pocket Prep’s first app in the iTunes App Store wasn’t polished, but it worked well and the content was great.
Fast forward to today – Pocket Prep has three employees, over 45 freelance writers and editors, a team of developers, and over 100 exam prep apps in the iTunes App Store, Android Google Play, and the Amazon Appstore. Ken handles finances, technology, and partnerships while Peter handles design, storefront marketing, and customer service. Michelle brings management, marketing, design, web strategy, and social media skills to the team.
With the mobile learning industry making huge advancements every day, students are shedding their bulky textbooks and expensive courses for a more effective and convenient way to study. Since 2011, Pocket Prep has been the leader in mobile learning and will continue to provide high-quality, engaging exam prep material for students and professionals around the world.