In this interview, Jotform’s affiliate account manager Yaren Büyükdere talks with Alvin George, project manager of DNA Recruitment, about the importance of automation in business and how Jotform helps them cut costs and stay ahead of the competition.
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Yaren Büyükdere: Alvin, can you start by telling us about DNA Recruitment — its mission, vision, and its focus industry?
Alvin George: We started in 2016. We deal with blue-collar and white-collar industries over here, and that could see us servicing industries such as gardening, landscaping, building and construction, transport, healthcare, and the rail industry. So we service all these sectors by providing people for our clients.
Initially, we had a director who worked in a few other companies, a few recruitment companies, and she started DNA Recruitment. Five years ago, we had three clients. And then we landed a major contract worth $16 million. And then the challenge was, we were growing very rapidly in terms of operations, and that’s where I came in, probably six months after the company started.
I was looking after systems operations and building the processes and structures. That’s where I found that we have a lot of paperwork to complete, and everyone was relying on that. That’s where I found I could integrate Jotform and replace a lot of paperwork that we normally do internally and save a lot of time, including with our external stakeholders, especially for project delivery. Like that, we expanded, and because I’m an SME for Jotform, internally, and I have a background with a master’s in business administration, I could see how I could incorporate Jotform with the rest of our business.
Coming from that angle, I was combining Jotform with our existing processes and then that becomes part of our service delivery to the clients when we present them with a solution and provide operational support.
We’ve just been growing extremely rapidly. And compared to other big players, we can change our strategies overnight if we wanted to because our tech allows us to quickly adapt. So when big companies were looking for multimillion-dollar solutions, I designed one overnight.
To give you an example, when COVID hit, we were asked by the government to provide 400 workers, casual workers. Now from a recruitment perspective, we take care of the interviewing, screening, putting them into a slot, doing a face-to-face online interview, completing the documentation, putting them back into the system, training them, and giving them to the client.
Now, during that time, what happened was most of the companies usually had teams of six or seven consultants working on a project and their turnaround time to provide 10 people was at least three, or four days, right? Because they were posting the ad, whereas we managed to design a flow system in Jotform, assign points to questions, and set up “if-else” statements, so candidates could directly apply, they would receive an automatic email, would fill out the form, the form would qualify if they’re suitable or not, give them a calendar to book into a recruitment session, and add it with the integration. And we were able to give 400 people in like a week where companies which were worth $40-50 million couldn’t do it. So that’s how we grew.
Yaren: Perfect, we’re so happy to be a part of your business. So how do you offer Jotform to your clients? And what are some other ways you’ve used it?
Alvin: We don’t exclude anybody from being able to use Jotform. It’s part of the value package we give our clients, depending on what their requirements are. So no one would come and say hey, we need a specific requirement. Most of the companies come and ask us for reports which are very manual in nature, and we just automate them and give them that package, so we don’t really segregate clients like that.
So we just use the Jotform platform as part of our combined service delivery.
At the same time, individually, I have approached other businesses, and people within those businesses for free, and I’ve told them to use Jotform. For example, an ice cream factory up in Sydney, they were struggling to try to use spreadsheets to manage data inputs. And I told them, hey, slap a QR code sticker for a form, integrate it into the Excel spreadsheets, put it as view-only, and give people access. And suddenly, it was all automated.
There are so many examples like that. It might be diversity questionnaires, which they’re collecting in real-time, or another company I spoke to used it for registrations, you know, when you go and sign up, you have to manually enter it. They had to submit it in PDF form and we had somebody who’s doing a data entry role for $60K. And we could just then map the fields onto the existing PDF form with automatic submissions and document collection. So yeah, that’s just to give you an example of how we have put Jotform to use.
Yaren: How does Jotform help you increase your sales? And what kind of contributions does it make to your company? In addition, what makes your partnership with Jotform successful?
Alvin: I think more than improving sales, it reduces operational costs. Because as you know, Australia is a capital-intensive country, and labor is very expensive. So for us, more than sales, reducing operational costs is where Jotform comes in.
Yaren: OK, perfect. Do your clients ask for your services knowing Jotform ahead of time? Or do you assess their problem and recommend Jotform as you know that would solve their issue?
Alvin: We would assess their problem and recommend Jotform if that’s the solution for them.
Yaren: Do you have a specific industry or customer type, like this customer or this industry, that should use Jotform?
Alvin: Blue-collar industries, in general. The blue-collar industries over here, to give you a bit of background, hate technology, and they don’t realize how much value we can add. And a lot of people here, especially small businesses in that sector go on personal relationships and a brand they trust. Especially in Australia, if you’re a brand based in Australia, that’s their first priority. Doesn’t matter wherever you’re from, if there is a local supplier here, and there is a face you can meet and say hello to, they would prefer that.
Yaren: So to finish up, we’ll do some rapid-fire questions with short answers. First, what is your favorite use case, feature, or product of Jotform?
Alvin: “If-else” statements, conditional logic.
Yaren: What is one element that makes you the proudest in your company’s career?
Yaren: What is the best learning experience you’ve had in your partnership journey with Jotform?
Alvin: I think people don’t like change. But once they experience it, firsthand, live, they will buy into it. I can give you a short example. I spent one week explaining to the senior management how Jotform can help solve a particular business problem we have been having for three years. Everybody said no. So I said, “You know what? Screw it. I’m gonna go and design the product anyway and I’ll show it to them.” When I showed it to them, they went, oh my God, this is what we’ve been wanting for the whole time. So I went OK, people don’t believe in technology blindly. But once they see it working, they will buy into it. That’s a learning curve for me.
Yaren: Yes, that’s a great example. So, who is your mentor or influencer, whom you look up to and get inspired from? Do you have someone like that?
Alvin: Personally, yes. Steve Jobs.
Yaren: OK. Can you tell us your favorite productivity tip for other partners or other industries?
Alvin: Try to automate it first.
Yaren: You’re totally right! That’s all — thank you so much for your time. It was a pleasure talking with you.
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