Orbital Witness case study

Orbital Witness - Using interim leadership as seamless parental leave cover

How a Scalewise interim leader enabled Orbital Witness to maintain momentum during the Head of Business Development’s parental leave.

LegalTech / PropTech

Full-time for initial 6 months



Launched in Autumn 2018, Orbital Witness is automating legal due diligence in the property sector. Instead of asking lawyers to check through myriad documents and reports, Orbital Witness’ digital solution improves the transparency, speed and simplicity of legal diligence during property transactions. In just four years, the product has been used to check almost one million properties, and is trusted by UK legal giants, such as Freshfields, Clifford Chance and Allen & Overy.

Orbital Witness Need

With Orbital Witness’s Head of Business Development going on parental leave, the company’s co-founders started looking for a parental leave cover solution three months in advance. 

In particular, they were looking for an experienced leader that could keep the momentum going and support the business development (BD) team during the parental leave period.

Key Impact

Scalewise explained the various types of role that could act as cover, including interim, fractional and coaching. Having decided on an interim leader, Scalewise created a shortlist of candidates based on Orbital Witness’s needs. Following a round of interviews, Orbital Witness decided to hire Richard Wright for an initial six months.

Richard met up with Orbital Witness in the weeks before the engagement began, attending meetings and getting up to speed, to ensure a seamless transition. He has since had the following key impacts:

1. Maintained BD momentum

Richard was able to fill in the gaps and ensure that Orbital Witness continued its growth. In particular, he held a fairly junior team of BDRs to account, but also supported their development through 1-2-1s, coaching and mentorship. Richard was also able to attend sales calls and advise on more complex deals based on his previous experience and expertise.

2. Suggested new ideas

As an interim cover, Richard was tasked with steadying the ship rather than implementing widespread changes. However, he also suggested small process changes, which Orbital Witness decided to try. For example, he reorganized the BDRs and AEs into pods to bring about some internal competition and get members of the sales/BD team working in sync.

3. Delivered founder peace of mind

With the Head of BD going on leave, it would have fallen on the company’s co-founders to pick up various meetings and responsibilities, whilst also trying to find time for hundreds of other business-critical activities. Richard’s energy and expertise gave the BD team an outlet to draw on – especially in terms of professional development. As such, the team had less need to ask the founders for support, which freed up the founders’ time to focus on other tasks.

4. Opened future support options

Orbital Witness is a young growing company with a high likelihood of parental leave at leadership level in the future. Having worked with Richard, the founders not only know the benefits of interim cover – allowing them to plan with confidence – but the flexibility of external expertise has opened new support options. For instance, leaders at Orbital Witness know they can lean on Richard’s unique experience as a sounding board for future decisions or second pair of eyes on new initiatives.

“Unquestionably, Richard has made our lives as founders easier. Having someone with his level of experience come in and coach the business development team has not only maintained our growth, but given us founders the time back to drive the company forward.”

Edmond Boulle

Co-Founder Orbital Witness

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