Sustainable Grassroots Recycling

The Design Challenge

For a while now, Plastiki Rafiki has been struggling with keeping track of the finances. Being on the admin team, I’ve myself started and abandoned 5 spreadsheets for account keeping. We are not even sure as to whether we were in profit or loss last year. This is when I realised that organising financial information and making sense of the numbers is a challenge for all new startups. That is why I wanted to create a tool to facilitate this process for the small scale businesses that are concerned with the production of items.

Keeping a stock take or recording the number of items sold is a challenge. But the bigger
challenge is to assess those numbers and make business decisions based on quantitative evidence.

Summary of Research

One of the primary concerns of the organisations that want to partner up with us is the lack of a financial summary. Before investing into our machines, they want to consider the feasibility of the project – how long would it take to start making profits? How do the profit margins work out? How much do we need to pay the workers? How sustainable is the business in the long run? Till now, we haven’t had the answers. We haven’t had the data to prove that we are worth partnering up with.

The purpose is to create a tool that facilitates the business decision making processes for Plastiki Rafiki and enable us to base off our action on numerical trends.

This spreadsheet is a tool that helps you understand how much money you need to start, how many products and services you need to sell per month in order to be profitable, and how long it’s going to take to pay back your initial investment. It also allows to manipulate certain variables (like costs involved, selling price or quantity) to change profitability or meet the margins that you had previously set for yourself.

Link to Process Journal & Final Reflection Video

Sustainable Plastic Recycling – Plastiki Rafiki Business Plan

Link to Process Journal – Overview of the project and personal reflections

Link to Process Journal (Product Pricing Component)