Workplace, or office, is one of the places where we spend almost 50% of our lifetime. Offices are like a second home to us, and our colleagues and workmates are like our extended family.
Hiring a good team for your organization is one of the most important and crucial tasks. As Ratan TATA said, you hire just 15 best people for your organization and rest 15000 will be hired by them.
He is right, an office does not mean good computers, hardware, office chairs, building, curtains, and AC. An office means people working for us, their right attitude, dedication, devotion towards achieving your goals makes it a good office.
Employees are like your pillar who work day and night to achieve your aims, targets and goals. You always need a right mix of professional, social, and personal approach to aim high and achieve big targets.
But at the same time, hiring such people out of the crowd of 1.34 billion population today is a very, very tedious task. You cannot just hire anyone and everyone as your team member.
Filtering their resume, checking the right skill set, judging their attitude towards your organization is a very important thing. Or else, you will just end up hiring and firing and no productive work will be done.
Recruitment and HR don’t only mean hiring and firing, they mean total people management. To check whether your team has the right approach, right attitude, the right mix of professional and personal balance.
Usually, for start-ups as well as very large companies, this becomes a hectic task. Start-ups always focus on business and revenue generation and large companies do not have time to cross check and filter every employee and resume personally.
So what do we do? We need the right agency, right people who understand what we want. Yes, a recruitment or HR agency! But not just any agency. You need someone who understands what HR is, who understands what you want so they can offer you the best solution that too with a very reasonable cost.
Meet Waqar Azmi, the founder of SutraHR and sumHR. Bringing his overall life experience after understanding the pain point of both the start-ups as well as large corporations, Waqar Azmi started his ventures catering to clients nationally and internationally. His company SutraHR and sumHR are locally respected & globally connected. Let’s see what Waqar Azmi and his ventures has to offer and how this idea came and the venture started.
1.What is the Name of Your Venture?
Sutra Services Pvt. Ltd. which is inclusive of 2 sister companies – SutraHR and sumHR.
2.Who is your target Audience?
SutraHR – We specialize in startup hiring but also work with large corporations on small requirements.
sumHR – Startups and SMEs.
3.Where is your venture based ( city, state, country) & What are your target areas?
Both ventures are based in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
SutraHR – India, Singapore, Indonesia, Middle East, Malaysia, UK and still expanding.
sumHR – India for payroll, and other countries for attendance, etc.
4.What problems does your venture solve? What are your products or services.
SutraHR – SutraHR has been a pioneer of startup hiring. Since 2008, we have helped many organizations hire the right talent with the same vision as them.
sumHR – sumHR is a SaaS modeled cloud-based HR & Payroll software. It streamlines the entire HR process and provides end-to-end employee lifecycle solutions.
5.Share the idea or story behind the venture. How did it come to an existence?
SutraHR – When I launched my first startup, I realized that the biggest problems startups face is hiring people to work for them. This is when I decided to start a recruitment firm that specializes in startup hiring.
sumHR – We’ve interacted with a lot of HR professionals at SutraHR. We received frequent requests to handle their end-to-end HR processes besides recruitment. That made us realize that streamlining the HR process is a massive problem faced by many HR folks. This set the stage for us to launch a product which would automate the entire HR process
6.How did you identify your co-founder? Tell us some thing about your co-founder/s
While running SutraHR, I had placed Jay Thaker at Burrp, and that’s how I know him. When I found out he was looking for a change, I asked him to come work at SutraHR. And a couple of years later we begun sumHR.
7. How did you hired your first team members
We hired them through references. We also hired 2 people from Orkut back in 2007-2008.
8.What expansion plans are you looking for the next 2 years, next 5 years?
Currently we’re closing a position every 12 hours and are looking to bring that to one position an hour. We also want to increase our team strength to over 200 people in the next two years. In the next 5 years, we plan on doubling those numbers and expanding globally.
And for sumHR, we plan on going global with our product in as many emerging markets as possible. On the numbers side, we want to process payroll for over 1million+ employees.
9.Where do you want to see yourself in next 10 years?
I didn’t expect to be here today 10 years ago so I don’t know where I’ll be in 10 years. I like living life organically and go with the flow.
10.Have you raised any funding? Or have any plans for the funding?
We are planning on raising funding for sumHR. But SutraHR is completely bootstrapped.
11.What were the problems you faced during the starting days and how did you resolve them?
One of the problems I faced when I started off was that I used to look very small so people didn’t take me seriously. One time when I went to look for an office space they told me to go call my father. But I was persistent and eventually I started doing things and people started believing in me.
12. What have been your biggest challenges and learning so far?
Like most entrepreneurs, hiring great talent has always been a challenge. We’re always striving and looking for better talent as HR fraternity doesn’t usually have good talent. I’d like to share my top 3 learning –
1) You cannot make people do things that they don’t love doing. So you need to look for people who love doing what they do.
2) Leadership is the most valuable and rarest skill to find in today’s world.
3) People will only believe you undoubtedly only if you get shit done.
13.Are you married, single or in a relationship?
14.What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
I’m a big street food connoisseur and an avid solo traveler. When I’m not working, I’m either hunting for the best places to eat or traveling.
15.Whats your favorite food & holiday destination?
Favorite food – Street food.
Holiday destination – Philippines and Croatia.
16.Whom do you consider your idol or biggest motivator?
Honestly, It’s not one person that I look up to. But some people who’ve had an impact would be Bhavin from Directi for entrepreneurial skills and M.S. Dhoni for his leadership skills.
17.What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?
The biggest difference according to me would be risk taking and backing yourself up.
18.If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?
If I had to do anything differently, I’d drop out of college and start early. And I would’ve put more effort into hiring the right people initially.
19.How has being an entrepreneur affected your family & Social life?
Since I’m single and ambitious, my parents have been really cooperative. I have a pretty amazing social life and we usually end up hanging out in our office itself since we’ve designed it to be pretty cool and quirky. I also call up my friends here to hang out with us. Besides this, I’m also an avid solo traveler.
20.Anything, you would like to say to our readers or upcoming entrepreneurs?
Over a period of running multiple businesses, I’ve realised four qualities are extremely important to make it big. Speed, quality, reliability, and making things happen. Don’t try, just get it done. It has to be a combination of all four.
21.Tell us something about your education & family background.
I’m born and brought up in Mumbai in an upper middle class family. My father has been an entrepreneur who’s had the rags to riches story, like many folks who’ve come from UP. I was never a great student and was barely able to pass my engineering exams. But I did get a degree in Bachelor of Engineering(Computers) from Mumbai University.
22.What is your USP which makes it unique & different from other start-ups in similar domains.
SutraHR – We operate very much like a startup and we really understand what a startup needs. Over a period of time, we’ve built a pretty extensive database of startup candidates which no other company in Asia would have.
sumHR – Our USP lies in understanding the HR space and what an HR wants. Hence, we’ve been able to design an amazing UI which no other software would provide. We’ve created a full-fledged product suite while most are concentrating on certain features. We are soon going to launch in the HR apps marketplace.
23. What do you think is the biggest threat to the success of small businesses & Start-ups today?
I think the biggest threat for startups and SMEs is losing good talent to large companies. For example, if today I want to hire great talent, a bigger company might offer more and be able to take them away.
24. Do you consider yourself successful and by what means do you measure success?
I’d leave that to other people to judge. But I think for me success means happiness, and I’m happy with whatever I’ve been able to achieve.
25.Please share complete name, address, phone number, email id & website of Your Business & Contact Person
Sutra Services Pvt. Ltd.
602 – B, Annapurna Building, Above Delicacy of China, Opp. Oshiwara Park, Adarsh Nagar, Andheri West, Mumbai 400102.
SutraHR – Waqar Azmi
+91 77188 73526
sumHR – Jay Thaker
+91 92222 13195