Expo Spotlight with Kailash Krishnamurthi, Founder & CEO of Gravity iLabs
Gravity Consulting helps clients challenge traditional ways of working, COVID must have really impacted your business, tell us about that.
Over the past year and a half, we have experienced both favourable and unfavourable circumstances owing to the COVID-19 pandemic. It has challenged us to re-think the way we operate and deliver value to our clients. Internally, our teams were able to quickly transition to a remote working model with minimal impact.
With our clients, we’ve seen an increase in adoption of digital platforms, especially in the strategy execution space. Our StrategyDotZero platform enables clients to transition from a traditional paper-based operation to a digital cloud-based platform. As a result, leadership teams get better visibility to orchestrate their operating models in a remote environment which otherwise would have been difficult to do during times like these that call for remote working models. The digital approach to strategy execution equally benefits the Business Unit heads and practitioners (project managers etc.) to collaborate on work and report progress using digitally enabled processes and workflows.
However, we experienced some pressure during the second half of the last financial year due to the change in customer buying behaviour. Despite the ups and downs, we remain optimistic and confident that we’re better placed now than ever to scale and grow our business this year.
How many staff do you employ, where are your offices located and how long have you been in business?
Our team has an interesting mix of Technology and Business consultants, Information Designers, Visual Artists and Software Engineers. In all, we’re a group of around 65 in three cities across Australia and India. We’ve been in business for over 10 years now. The focus of our offerings is primarily on digitally augmenting strategy execution management. We also provide systems modelling and visualisation services for complex, inter-connected domains that are represented as static or interactive visualisations. These drive a better understanding amongst stakeholders, often with diverse backgrounds and perspectives, towards a common strategic objective.
You’ve developed some amazing products and services, any favourites?
I think some of the journeys we’ve been on with our clients, helping them navigate complex domains such as policy, legislation or even with strategy execution continues to excite me. But by far, the one thing that underpins our efforts is our StrategyDotZero (SDZ) platform. It is a strategy realisation solution that lets organisations manage their end-to-end strategy execution through a single platform.
SDZ streamlines the flow from planning through performance management and governance. The digital workspaces help transform the static paper-based approaches into a dynamic, digital system that connects various functional areas within an organisation be it Business Planning, PMO, Risk Management, Services Management, Governance etc. As a result of the interconnected system, we’re able to surface better insights for leadership teams, in real-time, that help them make informed and evidence-based decisions. SDZ also reduces time and effort for practitioners by standardising workflows and reducing administrative overheads.
We’re excited about the potential as we continue to see the impact SDZ has across the various levels of government and in sectors such as higher education, utilities etc. The increased adoption reflects a strong market validation of translating innovation driven services into a scalable, product-platform business. This, along with an increased interest in the market paints a positive outlook and gives us confidence to scale and grow our footprint outside of Australia.
As Founder and CEO of Gravity Consulting, what does your typical day look like?
As an entrepreneur, I find myself constantly juggling to balance my daily routines with the various distractions of work. Gravity is still in the start-up phase which has its own set of challenges, more so since our teams work across geographies and time zones.
As a Founder-CEO, finding the balance between ‘working on the business’ v/s ‘working in the business’ is something I’m constantly striving for. These include focussing on growth, building the business, building the right teams, working on specific client-driven projects and ensuring that we deliver value. Simultaneously, I’m thinking about the next wave of innovation to grow the company and what the value drivers might be for that.
One thing that I find refreshes and rejuvenates me is being in nature. Sydney has some beautiful parks and reserves nestled across the city. It gives you a feeling of being enveloped in nature while still being very close to the city. Whenever I get a chance, I look forward to spending time or going on a walk. Also, the occasional walk along the Sydney Harbour or across the Harbour Bridge is something that I enjoy.
Tell us about Gravity’s involvement with Expo Dubai 2020 and what are you hoping to achieve through your involvement?
Gravity is a proud partner of the Australia Pavilion at Expo 2020. We’re excited to participate and looking forward to being in Dubai next year. We’re keen to expand our footprint overseas by establishing our presence in the ME region. We see tremendous opportunity as countries there are leading global conversations around the Future of Government, Smart Cities, Future of Policing etc. We’re looking forward to engaging with Government representatives and showcasing our expertise through some of the work we’ve done with the Federal and State governments in Australia. We’re also keen on engaging with local firms to partner with them to deliver projects in the Middle East.
I note that Gravity Consulting is committed to protecting the environment, tell us about some of the initiatives you’ve implemented as part of this commitment.
One of the key policies that we’ve adopted at Gravity is to take a ‘digital first’ approach in all our operations. This means that we’re able to innovate and develop products that facilitate the reduction of environmental impacts, and we promote this to our clients and partners.
We engage in education and training to motivate our team to carry out tasks in an environmentally responsible manner. We also encourage environmental protection among suppliers and subcontractors.
How do you like to spend your time when you aren’t working?
These days, when I’m not working, I try to find time and observe or explore the dynamics of the changing social and economic environment around the world. I occasionally write on random topics of interest.
I also enjoy cooking, playing cricket, tennis or catching up on a Netflix show. I’ve always had an interest in music and growing up, I’ve trained to play the Mridangam (an Indian percussion instrument). Recently, I’ve been teaching myself to play the keyboard, and that’s been a rewarding experience.
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