Vertex is one of the leading technology companies in India that offers BPO/KPO, staff augmentation, Artificial intelligence, managed services, digital marketing under one roof, and recently forayed into the e-learning space with Vertex Digital Academy. It has revised its digital solutions considering the market situation to assure streamlined services to its clients that increased their productivity by 10-20 percent and currently the company is focusing to strengthen its portfolio with IT/ITES to bestow virtual and technological solutions. Moreover, after making two international acquisitions the company is gauging up to spread its reach to international markets.
In a conversation with Mr. Gagan Arora, CEO at Vertex Global Services, we discussed the current industry scenario, the future of AI, and how Vertex is transforming its client’s businesses with cutting-edge solutions.
- Please brief us about Vertex.
Our core objective is to give support to all end to end functions under one umbrella. We equip companies with cutting edge solutions and help them to propagate their performance with our expertise. From companies’ registration to business optimization, we offer integrated business solutions and consultancy services while maintaining cost and diminishing risk.
Our services are intended to provide business optimization solutions to clients. The services offered by us are not only cost-effective but also able to generate ROI for clients in no time. Our application-based business methodologies help us to solve every business problem of clients in a result-oriented way.
- What were the initial challenges you faced?
Commencing a business is an intimidating thought. There are many unknowns to dive into. But to be an entrepreneur ‘flexibility’ is sustaining and encouraging. As an entrepreneur, I have played many roles at Vertex but the most important is to keep my Unstoppables (team) inspired and motivated throughout. Having experience with various industries I think inculcating a vision and motivating people towards it is quite a task and is equally important.
Vision is something that cannot be forced but has to be practiced. At Vertex, maintaining teamwork we, strive to achieve whatever we have in our hands. We have this exceptional balance formula: We acknowledge our idealism to kindle our vision, but then we also harness the passionate skepticism to move step-by-step to justify our longstanding vision.
- Which was that point that triggered the growth of the company?
Growth is essential for any brand, but most importantly it is an opportunity to be innovative, to take up new challenges, and bring out the best in you as well as the team. It allows us to build new avenues for talented minds, meet people who can be an inspiration in multiple forms, and deliver successful projects. A company’s growth also means the growth of its employees and it truly enthralling to see your peers excel. Here are the various factors which have boosted company growth:
- Company Culture: With each new addition to our team, the camaraderie and company culture inevitably changes. It is important to not overlook company culture but instead, we have a plan to foster and develop the initial spirit as the numbers grow.
- Knowledge Management: A startup often captures its working knowledge in the minds of its early employees. As a result, we may struggle to educate new hires, and some people may have a disproportionate amount of power or responsibility simply because of what they know. To grow smoothly, we ensure there is a discipline about documenting your best practices and sharing them with the team.
- Each Small Step: As entrepreneurs, we like to explore, we’re curious and we always get involved in new projects. This is good. But it’s easy to forget to create processes to establish stability and consistency. But we keep in mind vision and determine the steps we need to take to get from where we started and where to lead.
- Cash Flow: One piece of advice I would like to share that helped us that don’t overlook how much money is coming in and always balance it with the money you are spending to grow. As Warren Buffet says: “Cash or available credit is like oxygen: you don’t notice it 99.9 percent of the time, but when absent, it’s the only thing you notice.”
- Continued Scalability: We constantly review and upgrade our processes and the structures within our company simply because a lot of what we had in place works today, but would not be appropriate or even feasible with four times the number of employees.
- How have the company graphs changed since the foundation? Can you share a few statistics?
2016 : 2 || 2017 : 14|| 2018 : 36 ||2019 : 75|| 2020: 350
- What is the reason behind your company’s long-standing success?
I believe that sustaining a business performance and growing its competitiveness demands a company to plan proactively and straighten their innovation approaches as an inescapable ingredient of their company plans. Nonetheless, it should not be a reactive strategy to catch-up with the developing market or torch stoning with competitors. We believe in our unique competencies and successful innovations that are well-articulated, quantified, shaped, and followed by scalable strategy.
‘Entrepreneurship is no longer a sustained province of business veterans. When we ideated Vertex, we only had two things in hand – passion, and vision to make a difference in the industry.’
- What are the products/services the company focuses on? How are your services different from those in the market?
Right now we are focusing on digitization, IT, and ITES; we are closely working and planning to zero in on 90 percent of customers from international markets and 10 percent from Indian markets.
What differentiates us is our Uniqueness and constant moves towards innovation to strive for perfection. Vertex is the single window for all the services like AI, managed services, staff augmentation, performance, and digital marketing. We ensure streamlined services to our clients and that’s what makes us one of the pre-eminent experts in providing business solutions, we bend over backward to serve our clients to our best endeavors.
- How do you decide to take the company a step further in terms of your products/services?
Speaking on the influence of technology and AI, disruptive technologies are at the essence of innovation. They are influencing and reshaping every industry by bolstering productivity and a more accelerated return on effectiveness. At Vertex, we all have an innovative mindset as part of our open-ended upskilling strategy to decipher our client’s business into the desired solution utilizing disruptive technologies and artificial intelligence.
We believe that by implementing AI and through constant enhances in innovations we can do more with data and facilitate digital transformation. And is an absolute philosophy of forwarding elevation to improve every perspective of the businesses. It provides a line of intelligent means for everything and everyone. The future is here and to stay eternally.
- Is there any new addition to the list of products/services? Anything exciting you would like to share?
We have recently forayed into the e-learning vertical with Vertex Digital Academy, a one-stop destination for lifelong learning with a mission to showcase, advocate, and practice advanced e-learning for the learners of today, tomorrow, and the future. We are deploying innovative technology to further evolve the education system. There will be a sustainable and holistic ecosystem of online learning that is credible, productive, and future-proof in the long run. The academy looks forward to growing with its community of learners and instructors. The online learning platform equally benefits instructors and learners in different ways where creators and universities can work on the revenue-sharing model and learners can grow through in-depth and in-trend learning courses.
No vulnerability, no creativity. No tolerance for failure, no innovation. It is that simple. If you’re not willing to fail, you can’t innovate. If you’re not willing to build a vulnerable culture, you can’t create.Brene Brown
- Can you please brief us about your professional experience?
I believe in the power of learning and growing. It’s my sheer passion to drive business with an application-based approach. I always keep myself motivated and work with 100 percent dedication to create a win-win situation for the entire business ecosystem that includes clients, partners, and our team members.
The reason that drove me into entrepreneurship was my interest in technology and innovation. Ever since I started my professional journey, I have been looking to offer business solutions to clients that are driven by modern-day innovation and technology.
As my yearning for technology grew, I thought of starting something of my own, and that’s where the birth of Vertex Global Services took place. It’s has been a fascinating journey with Vertex where we all including partners and team members walk hand-in-hand for sustainable growth.
- What are the key achievements of your entrepreneurial journey?
My entrepreneurial journey is an inspirational history which started from being a torchbearer to an entrepreneur and now to the leader. Starting as part of a team that launched an office for a global company with over 3000 employees in Indore to spearheading various departments and several brands for 15 years, I left the corporate job and launched Vertex Global Services and expanded operations in the USA, INDIA, and PHILIPINES. With an instinct of being solution-oriented, thinking out of the box, and focused on hard work, I was accolade as CEO of the year 2020.
- I am certified from Boston University
- Through my willingness to pitch the best for Vertex I made a quintessential contribution to vertex by deploying Chabot for one of the leading eCommerce clients which handle 5000 chats per day and saves more than $10mn overall.
- Deployed smart IVR for one of the major telecom providers which resulted in saving $1mn with their CSAT score up by 2 percent.
- Awarded as the best talent acquisition practices and most innovational operating standards
- Awarded for the best start-up of the year
- Responsible for seizing revenue growth of the company by 100% year on year
- Instrumental in making two international acquisitions
- Fundamental in rewiring the HR department and transformed it into 3 different segments which resulted in extremely low attrition and 92% plus ESAT since inception
- How do you look after your employees? What makes your team unique?
Vertex has robust goals and an abiding vision which is very well inculcated with every person associated with us. I believe that the notion behind an affluent start-up is its people and Vertex executives have every inch of courage, cooperation, coordination to navigate themselves to lead with innovation, work with passion, and foster collaboration for more holistic decisions. At Vertex, we killed the HR system and rewired it with a whole new look to match the expectations of modern employees. We believe that when there is an overdrive of processes – it kills the experience. This is why we decided to take a hard look at people’s practices. We saw that there was a big gap between the demands and expectations of the HR function.
For instance, employee retention was a big challenge led primarily by the age group between 25-30 years. In a compelling Harvard Business Review (HBR) article written in 2014, management guru Ram Charan had advocated that the HR function should be split into two.
Vertex decided to go ahead with the divide.
It handed over the payroll function to finance. And the role of the HR function was redefined as Talent excellence guardians. This included acquisition, engagement, care, and retention of employees. Then we decided to give the entire function into the hands of someone who has a strong operations background and has been a part of every function of the organization and hence he would understand what is required at the ground level to drive employee centricity
We heard what our employees wanted, what their concerns are, and what they are looking up to – finally painting on a new canvas.
Our culture is ethically led to maintain a parity of transitory goals with a scrupulous decision process to fortify the company’s collective reputation. The way we nurture talents and show flexibility to creativity keeps us closer to the path of success. We have a followed hierarchy structure wherein teams are made who are very well enlightened and pellucid in taking decisions under their mentors who have keen cognizance and the potential to foresee looming trends ensuring every decision under my supervision. We are all in together and work as One Team One Dream.
- Is there any special experience with your clients you would like to highlight?
According to the reports, “80 percent of your sales come from 20 percent of your clients.” To win those “lucky and profitable customers,” you need to have a strategy in place. We have 3000+ clients globally and we have unique experiences with every client. With our BPO support, one of the global leading company in heart care has scaled its operations in India by more than 40 %. We have received mail from WHO and the embassy to know our strategy for providing the best experiences. All I wanted to add here is the first step towards success is “knowing your customers.” If you have no idea about their wants, wishes, and buying behaviors, it will be impossible to entice them.
- Constant vigilance- a need or a strategy? Please share your views.
I think constant vigilance is a need and a strategy too. To meet the clients’ and customers’ needs companies must constantly keep a constant eye on the innovations and new resources and how they tap those resources for the benefit. Whereas after the pandemic constant vigilance is important due to the sudden increase in malicious activities.
At Vertex, we are looking into areas such as digital safety and improving threat intelligence, and tapping possibilities to look at all the challenges that are happening in cyber security, and innovate to address with safe products and services.
- According to you, how has AI become part of our day to day life?
AI is unleashing the new frontiers of life. We all are connected to artificial intelligence in one or another way. We are connected to it through mobiles, chargers, and even driving.
Artificial Intelligence that was viewed as impersonating human intelligence has opened the world to the fourth standard of AI, which is deeply advanced and will constantly change and evolve with the demand and necessity. It has not only built tech businesses that have a wider and more profound influence today but also has forced us to re-imagine our businesses and shape them more agile, flexible, and responsive.