From its humble beginnings in 2017 with a single member, BISTEC Global has grown considerably in record time. Its team is now 130+ strong, with offices in Sri Lanka and Australia. This talented collective of professionals specializes in software development and quality assurance, IT infrastructure services, accounting, and other digital services. With its unique engagement, delivery, and team model, BISTEC Global empowers organizations in 12 countries across 4 continents to expand their capabilities. In conversation with Arteculate, Co-Founder and CEO of BISTEC Global, Johann De Cruz shared how the company’s unique people-first culture has led the company to persevere and grow through turbulent times.
The fast-paced journey of BISTEC Global
Co-Founders of BISTEC Global Johann De Cruz, Anuradha Gajanayake, and Marlon De Cruz began the company’s journey with a single Australian client. Joined by partners Sanjaya Kasthuriarachchi, Mervyn Kalnaido, and Buddhima Wickramasinghe, the company has grown in strength from its humble beginning.
As the company expands its capabilities, it continues to strengthen its global clientele further to achieve tremendous success. Yet, while it’s grown rapidly to 130+ professionals, the company has continued to keep its People First ethos, where mutual trust and individual strengths are prioritized. Its teams have continued to persevere while supporting its clients through a collective effort, as reflected by the BISTEC Global promise, “We exist in this world to create a better life for anyone connected to us in some way or the other.”
BISTEC Global’s People Culture of ‘Hearts, not Heads’
The company’s promise to the world starts from within itself. Johann states, “We look at our team members as hearts, not heads.” The leadership shares this central belief at all levels of the company. From this foundation, it’s built a people-centric culture driven by technology. The company takes pride in the growth of the number of hearts working towards a common goal – business excellence in the digital world. It’s a distinctive leadership approach that has offered great returns, even through trying times.
For instance, when the pandemic struck, BISTEC proactively ensured its teams could work from home without compromising their engagement with one another. Impromptu virtual coffee hangouts replaced water-cooler banter. Online events, celebrations, and game sessions are hosted regularly to break up the monotony of working from home and allowing workplace camaraderie to thrive. Fun nights like pizza nights and beer nights included. There is an intentional effort to sustain the culture built with long-term focused initiatives like tech talks, knowledge sharing sessions, creating a people’s forum, maintaining a memories page, and encouraging BISTEC Club activities.
Johann also highlights that all hearts are treated equally through its transparent and distributed management ideology. There’s nothing anyone at all levels can not discuss with the top management. “All Hearts meetings are held monthly with an ‘ask anything’ sessions hosted intermittently where our members can anonymously post questions to be discussed at the meetings and help them feel valued,” shares Johann. Further, although a growing team experiences less human interaction, each team lead is empowered with authority to support their teams while keeping the company’s culture intact.
The Global Impact Created by a People-First Culture
Today, BISTEC has made a name as a reputed global partner for businesses to expand their capabilities. The company specializes in many services such as software development and quality assurance, IT infrastructure services, accounting, and other digital services. Johann described their approach: “We aim to instill agility through the transformation of conventional practices. Our experts provide clear strategies that help our client organizations create value.”
The company has crossed several successful milestones along the way with a collection of notable success stories. A significant milestone in the company’s journey was digitizing the Housing & Population census and “One Common Portal” for registration of businesses and Tax Administration & Revenue Services by designing novel software for a Southeast Asian nation. BISTEC Global also played a crucial role in supporting a disability services company to develop a new line of business applications to serve its customers better.
Fast forward to the present, BISTEC is providing innovative digital solutions to private and public sector organizations, including “The Big Four” Johann shares that the dynamic services offered by BISTEC, enabled by its people-first culture, have played a vital role in the company’s rapid growth thus far.
What’s next for BISTEC Global?
The leadership at BISTEC Global envisions the continued growth of BISTEC in the global market. Johann notes that for any organization looking to grow, selecting a reliable services partner is paramount “The partners for such teams must be selected not only based on costs. The merits they possess and their ability to understand the specific needs of your business and the ability to add value are equally significant.”
Over the next 5 years, BISTEC aims to change how businesses can harness software in their respective domains. To that end, it has formed long-term partnerships with influential players such as Microsoft. At present, the company has made investments in the development of the following 3 new-age applications:
- WorkXFlow – A cloud-based work management application for accounting practices. It’s designed to help organizations improve their cash flow. To do so, it visualizes bottlenecks in the work planning process and enables simplified and optimized workload scheduling..
- BISTEC Care – An easy-to-use patient management and booking system for the medical industry. Being a cloud-based app, it simplifies the appointment process for both patients and health professionals alike.
- TAFI – A tax planning & lodgment application catered for individual income taxpayers, which automates the end-to-end process on the cloud.
As BISTEC Global continues to grow, it’s committed to bringing people and businesses together. All the while, it is creating an exceptional workplace where its teams create innovative solutions. As such, the team at BISTEC Global is on the lookout for new hearts to join them on their mission to empower global businesses to expand their capabilities and grow. With this unique people-first approach, Johann firmly states, “We believe this will create exponential value for our stakeholders, touching their lives through the supply chain, whether directly or indirectly.”