SaaS platform to improve performance of leaders and team NWORX

By Srikanth
9 Min Read
SaaS platform to improve performance of leaders and team NWORX 1

How would you define your journey? What was the Eureka moment that led to the inception of NWORX?

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It was a lunchtime discussion between my co-Founder Shwetal and I, on the World Happiness report, six years back that led to NWORX. This report ranks countries on happiness levels. We realized that countries with better institutions led by better leaders ranked higher. We also saw that some leadership attributes were critical to society’s happiness. I have this dream of enabling institutions, whether social or enterprise ones, to change for the better. Shwetal has the dream of enabling individuals in critical leadership positions, be it a CEO or a teacher at middle school to become better leaders and change the people around them.

We figured that we had the global experience and the expertise to solve the problem of effective professional development at scale. That was the moment. 

Tell us more about your operations. How significantly has technology enhanced your offerings?

Our business requires the orchestration of high-touch engagement among multiple stakeholders such as the program participant, his/her manager, executive coach, and the business sponsor. The interactions and information sharing are completely digitized across any kind of workplace device through the NWORX platform.

We run a business that must scale a high-touch operation to thousands of users. This means that intelligent automation is a critical aspect of technology that is leveraged by the NWORX platform to automate many workflows in internal operations such as designing and implementing programs for the clients, in partner operations such as collaboration with partners, and in client operations such as enabling client stakeholders with access to program analytics and recommendations.

How has technology paved the way for an altogether new era of leadership development?

Leadership and professional development is a domain that does not traditionally use technology except in digitizing all forms of content for leaders and managers to ‘read’ or ‘view’. Today, with a combination of digital technologies, including intelligent automation, a mobile stack that operates across operating systems, powerful analytics, and enterprise-grade cloud services, we are able to embed leadership development into the everyday work of a professional. While that has been a holy grail for many practitioners in the leadership development space, it’s only now that technology, access to smart devices in the workplace, and the comfort of professionals to use technology for daily work, has made it possible to create the breakthrough.

What are the USPs of NWORX?

Embedded professional development is the USP of NWORX. What does this mean? It entails a few distinct capabilities – one, allows each leader to plan their professional development experience in a unique way by focusing on performance goals that matter to them while aligned to the organizational mandate and the demand of their own role; twoenables each leader to build and practice critical leadership skills that matter to their immediate performance; three, use proved frameworks to perform critical leadership actions with the support of a coach or mentor; and last, intelligent orchestration that enables powerful leadership development models to power user experiences such that each experience is engaging and effective.

What are the new innovations being introduced by NWORX to stand out from the competitors?

We believe that Embedded Professional Development (not just learning) changes the game of leadership & professional development. Professional development embedded in the business context, as well as all aspects of the individual, can be highly liberating for the individuals and a performance multiplier for the organizations. We see Embedded Professional Development platforms as the most promising category in professional development. And India is a place where we have probably the maximum demand for professional development. Therefore, I expect embedded professional platforms to play a central role in the graduate readiness programs, workforce skilling initiatives, and in all forms of leadership and managerial development.

Elaborate on the present market scenario. What kind of business opportunities do you see in this segment?

We see two, three big possibilities. One is deploying our core product ourselves. To be honest, we can only run a few client engagements ourselves.

Two, we offer our platform to all service providers in the space of leadership and professional development. This helps them deploy very effective program designs for their customers at lightning speed. Plus, far more importantly, it helps them scale. Very conservatively, we have seen our ability to scale 20X when we use NWORX compared to what we could do for our own customers. Imagine what a service provider who is servicing 20 enterprise customers could scale to, with NWORX. This is the biggest opportunity.

Third, we are in the era of Creators. Experts from all domains are going to make themselves available over the internet to teach and develop professionally in all possible disciplines that we can think of. Now, these experts, coaches, and facilitators would all be available on NWORX to any service provider to package a great program and make it available to their customers and beyond. For example, a Consulting leadership development firm in the UK could access a CEO in the Insurance sector from India in their program seamlessly. This is the next biggest opportunity.

What are the emerging technologies in the HR/Professional Development space that are paving the way for a new India in the next 5 years?

HR space has been ripe for disruption using technology and we have seen the emergence of several applications of modern technology in the last few years. For India, this is highly opportune since we are home to one of the largest workforces in the world. AI technologies will lead the way in creating effective ways to search and match talent, and in embedding talent development into everyday work. Marketplace technologies will enable the adoption of the Talent marketplace as the tech platform that facilitates talent transformation & mobility in an efficient and organic manner. Virtualization technologies become mainstream in the advanced technical skilling engines and the use of computer vision tech becomes mainstream in hiring automation solutions. I do think that blockchain technology will find application in many high scale workforce processes such as background checks processing.

Lastly, what are your expansion plans and goals?

We have been successful in engaging leaders at all levels from numerous enterprises and growth-stage ventures across Asia, Europe, and Africa. We will continue to scale this business globally, especially with a big focus on USA and India. We are also focused on enabling 100 service providers to scale their business 10X in the next 3 years. This will, conservatively, bring a million professionals onto the NWORX platform. We intend to enable each of them to play a higher role or perform a bigger job as a leader in their workplace.

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