With the pandemic still raging on and with the imminent danger of a third wave, people are choosing to stay isolated and still working from home. While remote working is becoming the norm, everyone has been pushed to rely heavily on technology.
While many organizations are embracing this new way of working and incorporating flexible and hybrid models of working, it is time to become tech-savvy!
Pragmatic is a global open source enterprise software development, consulting and products company. Their philosophy is to use open Source tools and technologies to provide cost-effective and green solutions for our customers.
Pragmatic Techsoft is also one of our clients at FlexiBees, having hired a part-time and remote-working Talent Acquisition Manager who provided them with many benefits including time saved and finding affordable talent to match their business needs.
So we recently caught up with Shabbir Merchant, to understand their business and to know what worked well for them and why they choose to hire flexible talent. What ensued was an interesting conversation about how he managed to keep his business and teams afloat during these trying times - without any salary cuts!
Some excerpts from our conversation:
Can you tell us a bit about what you do? What services do you provide?
Our Customers are mostly internationally located in North America, Europe, Middle-east, Africa, Asia, and Australia.
What is your mission?
Our goal is to help SMBs have an affordable business system to manage and scale their business.
Who are the founders? Can you tell us more about them?
I founded this organization after having work experience with various companies. My career has been a roller coaster of challenges starting with a degree in engineering in Metallurgy and Material Science followed by a Master degree in Computer Science from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.
During my career, I expanded my learning from being an Engineer to a Computer Scientist where I worked in Life Science Informatics (Bioinformatics), Machine learning, Databases, Data Warehouses and Artificial Intelligence among other areas.
I worked in life science research along with scientists from Northwestern, Stanford, Berkley and Cold Spring Harbor research labs where I developed and utilized open-source tools and technologies to manage and analyze genomic/DNA data.
My passion for open source technologies and an entrepreneurial itch led to the start of Pragmatic Techsoft Pvt Ltd.
Pragmatic is both a technology service provider and has vertical focused products. We work with both direct customers as well as partners to help them with their technology needs.
I further ventured to start new brands and companies namely Pragmatic Voice,
a Voice technology services and products company in 2016 doing Amazon Alexa, Google Actions and other Voice platforms.
My latest startup in 2020 has been Pragmatic Commerce
which is a technology company helping Retail and eCommerce companies run an efficient online business. His most recent startup has been Merchant Systems Pty Ltd, an Australian based Enterprise Software company providing Digital Transformation using Business Process Automation.
How did it all start? How did you think of this need?
I was working with open source tools and technologies in Chicago, the United States back in 2007. These technologies were very disruptive and I knew they would play a major role in helping the Enterprise World. Hence, I started a company purely focused on open source tools and technologies.
Later, I got focused on the ERP and business applications market and focused on the open-source product Odoo. We started to provide apps and services around Odoo. As time progressed, we further expanded our offerings and provided ready-to-use business apps for enterprises.
How has the pandemic affected your business?
Pragmatic has been very different compared to other organizations during the last 2 years of the pandemic. We took full responsibility for our people during this critical phase. There were many companies in our space who fired employees, cut salaries by half or more, cancelled appraisals.
But we took a moral stand and continued normally. We scheduled appraisals normally, did not cut salaries and even paid employees who could not work due to COVID. We have been actively donating to many organizations during COVID to help during these tough times.
Contrary to most businesses, we grew in the last 2 years and have improved our profitability. Currently, we are packed with client projects and hiring very actively. We have given employment to hundreds of people in the past and are generating more employment.
In order to stay afloat and grow, Pragmatic focused on the areas of eCommerce, Logistics and Home Delivery thus leading to better revenues during the pandemic.
What is your differentiator?
We offer to our customers Odoo an open-source business suite of applications that is very reliable and cost-effective. It is a powerful business process automation and digital transformation tool. Our offerings are backed by our off-the-shelf, ready-to-use apps and amazing customer service.
We have 10+ years of experience doing this, thus making us the most reliable company in the market today.
What would be one success you have seen in the recent past?
Even though most organizations were in sustaining mode and we were too initially, I am happy to share that we grew by 100% in terms of our revenues in the last year! This is a huge achievement for us!
What are your future plans?
We intend to further expand our products and services offering and achieve 500% revenue growth in the next 5 years.
You have hired talent from FlexiBees, in part-time, remote working arrangements.
What benefits have you received from these arrangements? How did it help your business?
I really like the Flexibees business model as it is really easy to ramp up and ramp down teams. It has helped us cut short the long process of recruitment from weeks to days.
We hired a Talent Acquisition Manager from Flexibees. It helped us hire better talent at reasonable costs. It also helped us eliminate the entire screening process while taking the skill and experience validation step out of the recruitment process thus reducing the new hire onboarding time.
If you are looking for tech solutions for your business, then do reach out to Pragmatic Techsoft