BeZero Carbon

Building capability whilst accelerating climate tech delivery

The brief

BeZero Carbon is a fast-scaling, UK-based ratings agency for the voluntary carbon market, with a mission to build the information architecture needed to scale climate action. They have ambitions to become leaders in providing carbon credit ratings, research and analytics to help Voluntary Carbon Market participants gain the understanding needed to price and manage risk.

To meet these ambitions, BeZero Carbon wanted a tool to present their carbon credit ratings and analysis of hundreds of carbon projects, allowing customers to better understand carbon offset projects in a quick, easy to understand and visual way.

In an increasingly competitive space, BeZero Carbon needed to move fast to get a ‘beta’ version of the tool out to customers, but as an early stage startup they didn’t have the capabilities or capacity to move as fast as they wanted.

Loomery was asked to partner with BeZero Carbon to deliver and scale a ratings, research and analytics platform to help market participants navigate the complex and opaque Voluntary Carbon Market. We understood that their small team needed support to create not only a high quality product for beta and commercial launch, but to also lay the foundations for longer term success.

What is the Voluntary Carbon Market?

The Voluntary Carbon Market is a capital based model that has the potential to channel huge investment into climate positive action. In order to reach Net Zero, individuals, businesses, non-profit organisations, government bodies and others can purchase carbon credits which will either avoid the creation of or remove one tonne of carbon from the atmosphere. These credits are bought and sold on the Voluntary Carbon Market.

Project summary

Loomery worked closely with BeZero Carbon to accelerate the launch of a ‘beta’ product to market; to establish product management and design capability, processes and systems; and to hire and coach the best talent to help them scale fast.

Our success with BeZero Carbon was in part due to our focus on a team-based scaling model (bringing in the right people at the right time) over a project-based approach. The BeZero Carbon team now has two in-house product managers and an engineering team who have been supported by Loomery product people, designers and developers, all working to ensure the digital product scales, evolves and is supported for the future.

Project in numbers

200

Alpha participants for product platform

25

Customer interviews

3

Days between each new iteration

“Loomery has been instrumental in our ability to grow and develop our platform and broader business at speed. By enabling us to bring in highly skilled people across multiple teams we have been able to take a new product to market quickly and continue developing it in an agile and iterative way.”

- Sebastien Cross, Co-Founder at BeZero Carbon

Accelerating market launch

BeZero Carbon wanted to help its customers use data to understand the risk profile of carbon credits, whether investing, trading or selling them, but had no prior knowledge of developing and building digital products at speed and scale - or the cross-functional teams required to get the job done.

While they had initial conceptual designs for their platform, they needed to make the abstract tangible and ready for beta launch with both strategic and tactical approaches to digital delivery, run in parallel with customer discovery.

We were uniquely placed to help and did so by:

  • Setting a product strategy
  • Defining and developing customer segments
  • Creating a plan for product discovery
  • Establishing delivery process and cadence
  • Hosting regular product demos
  • Creating a product backlog of defined user stories
  • Introducing effective prioritisation techniques

Ensuring that the BeZero Carbon team had the guardrails needed in place, we were able to move from initial concept to a 200-user beta quickly and successfully, just two months after we first came on board.

Establishing product management and design capability

As a young business, BeZero Carbon had focused on several different services, including carbon footprinting and advisory services to businesses, as well as bespoke research projects. Building digital products was new territory, so we needed to develop effective product processes, procedures and approaches to enable them to push forward with growth in this area.

Design & Prototyping

We introduced product and design discovery for new elements not covered by the conceptual designs through the preparation of complex, realistic and interactive prototype versions of the platform. These prototypes used real data and life-like interactions on an interface that was as close to reality as possible.

The prototypes allowed us to stress-test the designs with customers in discovery sessions. We’re proud of the work we put into the prototypes, and believe that the level of detail involved ensured that the responses we gained were rich, informative and as relevant as possible to our live platform.

Product Roadmap

A vital piece of work for the launch of the product was creating a roadmap to allow both internal commercial teams and external customers to understand the future of the market platform.

By providing insight into ongoing technical improvements and being transparent with product progress, we were able to:

  • Keep customers informed of what was coming next
  • Arm the commercial teams with sales collateral
  • Provide stakeholders with visibility into planned activity

API Guidelines

Our experience at Loomery made us uniquely placed to help with some of the branding elements that came alongside the delivery of the product. Most notably, our work on API design guidelines for third party use of the platform data.

Allowing the headline carbon credit ratings, and critical supporting data that informs the ratings, to be directly displayed on partner sites is key for scaling the BeZero Carbon Rating in the market. Due to this, they have created API functionality to feed data through to third party sites. Our team generated comprehensive guidelines for API use, setting out acceptable visual treatments of the data.

The API means that there is versatility and flexibility in how third parties use the data from the BeZero Carbon market platform, but the “rules of the road” help articulate how this data can be managed and presented to assist in others getting the most from the ratings.

Scaling the team and coaching top talent

As part of our commitment to form high performing teams who deliver value consistently and repeatedly, our team spent time helping BeZero Carbon scale their own capabilities. With a Loomery director acting as their interim Head of Product we introduced a designer, developer and product manager to support the team with:

We assisted in hiring and training in-house product managers as well as upskilling part-time visual designers to work on the platform's UX/UI, with the help and guidance of the Loomery designer on the team.

A Loomery team continues to provide value for BeZero Carbon as they scale and move faster on their growth journey.

Conclusion

Not only did we work with BeZero Carbon to build and deliver a great digital product, we also worked to provide a cohesive cross-functional team, ensuring they had best in class resources to launch and scale their platform.

From product managers to software engineers and designers, Loomery ensured that a skilled team was plugged into the organisation from the start, allowing for a successful 200 user beta launch with 50+ iterations shipped over three months. The commercial launch of the platform in April 2022 was a success, with customer numbers continuing to scale.

Loomery provided the skills, capabilities and know-how needed to scale the product and the team to match BeZero Carbon’s ambition.

If you're part of a business currently on a rapid growth path, and you need help establishing the best teams and exceptional digital products, speak to Loomery and see how we can help you scale and deliver value consistently.