• Avinash Raghava

    In conversation with the Founder of RippleHire – Sudarsan Ravi, participant – @Intech50 2014.

    RippleHire is a SaaS-based employee referral product.

    Tell us about RippleHire – your journey so far…

    We help companies automate their talent sourcing by leveraging their employee pool.

    We spent our first year working with the ecosystem getting feedback and crowdsourcing problems on hiring. Only then did we begin our sales process and that too with the top global brands, so that we get the right folks to get the product experience and results right.

    The journey has been challenging and exhilarating – full of the regular highs and lows that every entrepreneurial journey has, along with the crazy experiences and insights that come with building a global company.

    RippleHireWhat challenges did you face during the course? Any learnings from that? 

    It was initially tough for us to go after brands like Adobe, McAfee, Capgemini. Convincing them to be among your initial customers was not easy. People love social proof and we will be eternally grateful to our first set of customers who have co-created this innovation with us and helped provide the social proof.

    If I were to do one thing differently, I would focus directly on global customers.

    Do you think that getting access to/finding investors is difficult in India? 

    I don’t think getting access to investors in India is difficult at all. We have always believed that investment is a by-product of building a good scalable business. Our focus as a team has been about building a product that adds value to our customers (the real proof came through when they paid).

    I always recommend startups to not focus on building a business for investors but for customers. Do take the inputs that the investors give you on the space and the approach. Factor that in. However, build the business to add value to customers.

    Our approach has meant that we have always received inbound interest from investors. So, I think getting access to investors is definitely easy if you focus on building a good business.

    Why did you consider participating in InTech50? 

    We wanted to get validation from Indian and Global CIO’s on our concept. It was wonderful to have multiple CIO’s stop by our booth post our presentation and share their hiring challenges.

    It was a great way for us to get feedback on RippleHire. Not only that, it helped us bag customers too.

    How has getting shortlisted for InTech50 helped you? 

    Being recognized as one of the top 50 innovative software companies coming out of India helped us a lot from our sales standpoint. People in India, and globally, take you seriously especially when the validation for the software comes from CIO’s.

    We have also grown by 10X in the past year.

    Who were the people you connected with as a result of InTech50, and can you give us a few specific examples of what those introductions translated into? 

    We were able to get feedback from multiple CIO’s and introductions to prospects like Happiest minds and Ascendum through this platform. Ascendum signed up RippleHire as a customer as well.

    What advice would you give to other emerging companies as they plan their scaling up?

    Every startup is different and has different challenges when it comes to scaling up. I think it is important to get the following right when it comes to scaling up –

    • Your customer support and product experience should be consistent. Think of a Pizza Hut. As they scale customers, it is important that the Pizza quality stays the same.
    • Scaling well is about putting the processes in place that the experience stays the same. Getting this in place requires thinking of your engineering, sales and support teams in the form of units. Once you get one unit right in your support engine, scaling is about replicating that unit.

    One recommendation I would give out to the InTech50 participants this year is that – research the sectors that are of interest for you. Hiring in our case is sector agnostic. It would have helped us if we had picked three sectors and focused on attendees from that space.

    Innovation Is Saying No To Thousand Things
    Great Tech Rocketships (GTRS) to the UK – a UKTI, Tech Hub UK and iSPIRT initiative

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    Mar, 04
    2015
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