"We have spent more than Rs 2 crore in the last five years on technology that helps run our organization better," says Kothari. And a business is only as good as the people it employs. "We have made sure that we evolve with the times and made our HR policies such that it helps us retain the best talent," says Kothari. Lot is also dependent on the fact that at Embee, employees are allowed to take responsibility and have been given the freedom to take decisions, make mistakes, and learn.
This is something most entrepreneurs in the enterprise channel business are not keen to execute. According to Kothari, the independence that the organization provides attracts risk takers. "People don't just work for money — they work for challenges and the pride in solving those challenges," he says.
Closer to customer
Embee, as an organization, also tries to take up work only with organizations where the customer-service provider relationship is understood to be one of give and take. "I would only like to work with customers who are willing to consider our inputs, respect our investment, and reward our efforts," says Kothari. An advantage of working with such open-minded customers is that the solution provider also learns and grows. Kothari also believes in staying close the customer as it helps a solution provider stay relevant. An area that it is working on internally is to figure out a way to identify the overall health of its customers by keeping track of their business and financials. "It's very difficult to keep track when you are dealing with over a thousand customers.
One time or the other you will fall prey to such a customer whose business shuts down and your payments get stuck," he says. This becomes especially relevant in the current business environment. "We are working on a solution that will help us track and analyze our existing customers so that we can reduce the risk of further exposure to those that are not doing too well." This problem wasn't as acute when the country was growing at a brisk pace.
But now, over the last couple of years, solution providers are beginning to feel the pinch of defaulting customers which inflicts adverse effect to cash flow, at times.. Kothari also firmly believes that in order to be successful you have to take all the stakeholders along with you. "It is important that you maintain relationships with your suppliers and other partners," he says.
Having been in business from the time mainframes were mainstream to the popularity of the cloud, he feels that the pace of innovation has picked up. "Each time, the interval between technology innovations is reducing and we are now required to adapt to each of the changes in less and less time," says Sudhir Kothari, managing director and CEO of Embee Software.
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