A decade-old pioneer infusing its excellence around UX domain: Divami
A successful enterprise comes with its own story and there is no such perfect time to bring an idea to existence. But this household name started off a bit differently. The startup fever was sweeping across the Indian landscape and it was the time when the founding team of Divami discovered their inkling to establish a name in the niche market space of UX & UI Design. The startup bubble was maturing. New ideas were being unfolded and fresh products and apps were successfully making their entrance into the market. Despite the celebration time in the startup domain, a key ingredient for any product’s success- User Experience and Design (UX/UI) were yet to be unearthed. The dire need and gap were quickly observed by the team which they could fill, and they never looked back. Soon Divami was brewed up. What started off initially as a product startup has fruitfully revolutionized itself into a leader offering a comprehensive set of best-in-class UX & UI Design services for both consumer-centric and enterprise application providers. To gain insight into the secret recipe behind this decade-old expertise, startup city magazine interviewed Mr Naveen Puttagunta, who chairs as the CEO & Co-Founder at Divami. The leader dished out his heart over a host of issues in line with the operations of Divami. Here are the edited excerpts of the same…
Naveen, thanks for joining us for this session. As we know, Divami has established itself as a fast-paced Company always looking to address and solves challenges in the area of UI/UX Design without losing focus on your key deliverable – Designs that are simple yet appealing. So, how do you keep the impulse alive?
Simply put, it is our team’s collective vision: “To be recognized as a UX Studio with global impact.” Since our start, we have been committed to delivering designs that are exceptional, innovative, out-of-the-box and most importantly, a class apart from the rest. Our emphasis on user research and analysis ensures that we diagnose the right pain point of our clients and their end users. We execute every project as a team, driving up reliability and accountability and our time-tested process and attention to detail is what sets us apart from several others in the field. We strongly believe in, “We are only as successful as our work is.” Clients approach us because of our drive for perfection and quality – it has become the hallmark of our work.
What drives you to have this vision? Why are you passionate about this?
It all stems from the collective effort of a passionate team who believes in making a difference in the world of Design. We believe in bringing fabulous designs to the most mundane of tasks – a great user experience should not just be limited to the techno-elite. With the proliferation of mobile apps throughout the fabric of our society, User experience and design matters to everyday lives, and we want to make a difference to that experience through our designs.
Who are the company’s ideal customers and how does the company currently approach them?
Small to midsize product and SaaS companies, Corporate departments driving Digital Transformation projects based in US and India form our clientele whom we approach through networking, referrals and digital marketing. Additionally, Entrepreneurs coming up with new products also approach us via mentoring sessions, grassroots activities, conferences, etc.
How did the company get to where it is today?
I believe it all comes down to three factors. Firstly, our focus on delivering perfection and quality, and secondly, our absolute commitment to customer satisfaction. There are a number of instances where we went above and beyond what was called for to ensure that our clients are absolutely delighted with us. We have to balance these with keeping our staff happy and motivated.
Is hiring a challenge for a startup?
Whether a startup or not, hiring and that too for design companies is particularly tough. Firstly, the talent pool for top-notch UI and UX Designers is very narrow. So, it becomes more like choosing rarest of the rare. Second, in this competitive market, if there is something that design companies are really aggressive on, then it has to be getting the best designers onboard, which in turn makes the hiring even tougher. Third and the most important thing is talent retention. As much as hiring is difficult, retaining your best talent is equally tough, if not more. Thus, the onus is on the hiring manager to not just hire the best talent but also have a roadmap for them for better engagement and retention.
How do you describe your culture?
One of the stand-out aspects for Divami is the work culture. It is all about freedom of expression, fun, being you, trying new things, a happy atmosphere to work in, a shared passion for new challenges and most importantly the feeling of being part of what we call the “Divami Family” where everyone is treated equally and with respect.
Where do you want the company to be in 3 years?
While continuing on our journey to maintain leadership as one of the best UI/UX Design Studios in India, we want to be counted as a significant player with a global impact in the next 3 years. We want to gain expertise in new areas and expand our footprint – both geographically and areas of business. The great potential offered by new technologies like AI, AR/VR poses major challenges as well as huge opportunities, especially in the design field. We want to establish ourselves as a leader in these areas over the next few years.
A piece of advice for the young entrepreneurs…
Firstly, Know the customer and their pain point. No matter how great you are at technology or marketing or finance, or the 100 other factors that are important to the business, if you are not solving the right problem the right way, you can never get off the ground. Second – while ideas are important, success only comes with great execution. We have seen time and again that being first to the market is not what matters – whoever excels at execution is the one who wins. Finally, follow your heart, but also listen to your mind.
Mr Naveen Puttagunta
CEO & Founder
Naveen nestles a rich expertise across various industries including UX Design, Databases and Enterprise Software areas, particularly focused on product planning, strategy, and technology direction. Prior to his move to Hyderabad, he was in a product management role at GoldenGate Software (an Oracle acquisition). Prior to that, he spent over 10 years at Sybase (now an SAP subsidiary) in various roles in product management and engineering, culminating in a leadership role with product management responsibilities for the enterprise database, replication and data access product lines. Naveen has a business degree from Indian School of Business, Hyderabad, a master’s degree in Computer Science from University of Houston, Houston, and a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from BITS, Pilani, India.
Ms Prathima Inolu
Chief Designer & Executive Director
In a career spanning over 15 years, Prathima has held various positions in Software Development and Design. For the last 7+ years, she has been an integral part of Divami’s journey and provides the vision and design direction for Divami. Prior to Divami, starting with a short stint at Peoplesoft (now part of Oracle) as a QA Engineer, Prathima spent several years developing and managing software for Synopsys’ IT group. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering from Siddhartha Engineering College and a Masters in Computer Science from California State University.