Today we have selected Dason Goh, and Fanny See to take their interview. They are Co-Founders of Detrack.
First of all, how are you and your team doing in these COVID-19 times?
Dason: We are currently working on a split team, alternating between working from home and office. This Flexi work arrangement has been ongoing for some time since the pandemic started last year.
Fanny: We work very hard and have good fun through various staff initiatives that keep the team engaged and motivated. At Detrack, we take pride in our company culture, so we strive to maintain team spirit and camaraderie even in a pandemic.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded or joined this company?
Dason: In 2012, we started a florist business to fund a couple of dates together. During Valentine’s Day, we met with a logistical nightmare as customers could not track their deliveries. We found none in finding an affordable solution that could provide real-time last-mile delivery tracking to customers. We recognized a market gap for an affordable and efficient delivery tracking solution to support the demand for supply chain logistics.
Fanny: To fill in this gap in the logistical chain, we took it upon ourselves to create the technology from scratch, and eventually, we founded Detrack, a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) startup focused on real-time delivery tracking and proof-of-delivery. Detrack provides businesses anywhere in the world instant access to their innovative and affordable real-time delivery tracking solution to power last-mile deliveries and enables customers logistical control in a safe, secured, and stable manner.
Dason: As CEO of Detrack, I oversee the business direction and strategy for the company. My work involves brainstorming on disrupting industries and making technology work for people and their businesses.
Fanny: I’m the COO and am responsible for all business operations at Detrack, including managing our corporate image and recruiting the right talent for our elite team.
How does your company innovate?
Dason: For us, innovation is our lifeline and also an integral part of our brand philosophy. We are constantly innovating to develop the best and most effective solutions for our customers and their clients. Innovating involves understanding our customers’ needs and their pain points and specific user journeys to create an overall seamless experience for all who leverage our tech platforms and services.
Fanny: Take, for example, ElasticRoute, a route planning solution that solves the highly complex Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP), using a proprietary hybrid heuristics algorithm. ElasticRoute brings to businesses unsurpassed speed, agility, and a reduction in fuel and workforce in planning. Since it was launched, early adopters of ElasticRoute reported an improved workflow, a 25% increase in deliveries per hour, and a 10% reduction in resource usage.
How has the coronavirus affected your business, and how are you coping?
Dason: Business has been going well thus far though not without some challenges along the way, especially in light of the pandemic. That said, as COVID-19 has driven the need for more contactless services, Detrack’s electronic proof-of-delivery has been a most welcome digital tool for many businesses in the logistics industry. And even after the pandemic, we foresee that contactless delivery and services will become a standard.
Fanny: We are coping well at the moment and doing our best to keep morale high as our team is also at the center of what we do. Every Detrack staff plays an essential role in growing the business, and their contributions have been most impactful and significant.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Dason: We have had to make difficult choices throughout the business, including starting a bootstrap startup at what might have been the lowest points of our careers! Financially, it was a huge strain on us during these initial phases of the business journey, and this could have been circumvented by raising funds and leveraging government schemes.
Fanny: One key lesson we learned is to look into working with investors that might be able to support the company in its growth and provide more than just the funds required but also the connections, insights, and knowledge of running a business, as well as invaluable mentorship – all of which are extremely beneficial in the long term.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?
Dason: Internally, we have our own set of tools and software that can facilitate remote work. Besides workplace web communication platforms that we use for our virtual meetings, we also use a voice over internet protocol (VoIP) phone system, which allows calls to the office to be directed to the respective department members who are now all working remotely. For claim submissions, Detrack implemented HR management software for employees to submit their claims remotely. A company-wide virtual private network (VPN) service was also introduced to enhance security for remote work.
Fanny: In terms of management, while we may be “operationally” ready for remote work, it is tough when the team cannot head into an office and interact with colleagues and miss out on various office facilities and staff welfare that we provide. More importantly, the fun and laughter we share when we work together to solve some of our hardest problems is what Detrack staff look forward to. That is why as management, we came up with interesting ways to maintain the spirit of our company culture and encourage continued creativity and cohesion.
For example, instead of the annual company dinner and staycation, we used the same budget for a fun team challenge, where each team of 4 to 5 staff was given a budget to spend on activities of their choice. We also sponsored all our staff an entire work-from-home setup, complete with an office chair, table, LCD monitor that they get to keep for future use. Besides that, we sent our staff care packs and celebrated their birthdays together via Zoom, delivering a cake to the happy recipient. At Detrack, it is important to us that we take care of our staff’s mental well-being and preserve the company culture through these challenging times.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Dason: Detrack serves businesses of all sizes, including small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs) and multinational corporations (MNCs), so competitors include enterprise software providers. B2B logistics software has always been an enterprise play that comes with a lengthy implementation process. However, with the emergence of cloud Software-as-a-Service, many companies realize that software like Detrack can offer them more benefits. The proven advantage of speed, affordability, and immediate time to market, coupled with our agility and innovation, are the various ways in which Detrack has been able to disrupt the logistics industry.
Besides this natural move to adopt cloud Software-as-a-Service, Detrack continues to hold the market leader position in the niche area of last-mile electronic proof-of-delivery with our innovations and onboarding funnel that enable a logistics provider with highly complex multiple workflows and many drivers to onboard and leverage Detrack’s solution almost effortlessly, in just a matter of hours. That is why we are confident that Detrack will remain relevant and successful as we take pride in our unique abilities to maintain a highly versatile system that is seamless and easy to use for all, marrying tech with real business needs.
Fanny: We also have a clear understanding that for a tech to be implemented successfully by businesses, it is essential to bridge the gap between the stumbling blocks caused by the steep learning curve of new software, long implementation time for IT projects, and resistance on the grounds towards tech adoption. As a Software-as-a-Service, we are different from traditional IT companies that resell multiple IT solutions or customize specialized software. We focus all our resources on creating, maintaining, and improving our single product geared to support the dynamic global needs of the last mile logistics.
Your final thoughts
Dason: Our startup journey was challenging as we had to build our software from scratch, troubleshoot tech issues and run multiple tests before its launch. We also faced difficulties recruiting suitable local talent amid the technological talent crunch back then. We needed to overcome these obstacles to ensure that Detrack delivered on its promise: enabling businesses anywhere in the world to deliver happiness to their customers.
Fanny: We started with only three people in the company, but today, Detrack is a 20-strong team with annual revenue of over SGD 2 million, serving more than 700 companies from over 50 countries. Our solutions have also been translated to over 20 languages to serve customers better worldwide. In time to come, we hope to spread the good word about our solutions to more companies all over the globe.
- Spokespersons: Mr. Dason Goh (CEO) and Ms. Fanny See (COO)
- Company: Detrack
- Website Link: https://www.detrack.com/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DetrackSystems/
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/detracksystems/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/detrack
- LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/detrack-systems