Sandesh Joshi: President & co-founder, Indovance Inc

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Sandesh Joshi is the President and co-founder of Indovance Inc. Prior to founding Indovance, one of the leading CAD and drafting outsourcing service providers in the world, Sandesh worked at SolidWorks Corporation as a senior R&D member. He has a bachelor of mechanical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, India, and a Master of Science from North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC, with a specialization in CAD.

How did you get into the industry?

Before starting Indovance, I worked at SolidWorks, a mechanical CAD software company, and that’s where I saw the opportunity for CAD outsourcing. SolidWorks was quickly replacing higher-end CAD software with easy to use, affordable mid-range CAD software specifically in the mechanical industry. Companies were transitioning to SolidWorks-like software and clearly there was a need for talent, as well as bandwidth, to support the change as well as embrace the new CAD software. That was where the idea of Indovance was born. I started building Indovance around the time I was working at SolidWorks, and slowly we branched out of mechanical engineering to include architecture, civil engineering, land surveying and publishing industries.

Any emerging industry trends?

Especially post-recession, most of my customers were forced to rethink how to rebuild their customer base and hence how to do business as a result. These companies began to focus on what their core expertise and competencies are and to seek partnerships with other companies, like Indovance, in an effort to decentralize their business when it comes to industry opportunities and challenges, rather than trying to do everything themselves.

Any industry opportunities or challenges?

In the global as well as technological world, access to talent around the globe is a key challenge. I expect that to continue to be a challenge for many years to come. However, what is a challenge can also be an opportunity as well. Those companies who can find and retain talent will be the ones who will stay ahead of the curve.

Inspiration for the business idea, and your vision for the Business?

Initially, the idea of starting Indovance was to cater to companies who were embracing 3D CAD software in the manufacturing/mechanical industry. Quickly, we broadened our scope to include other industries. The vision of the business is to be a reliable work-force and partner, and to work as an extension of our client’s in-house team.

What's next for the Business in the near future?

Indovance has been growing steadily. Now more than ever before we are working with larger companies as well as Fortune 1000 companies. One of our important initiatives over the next 18 months is to grow our sales team, as well as to pursue acquiring another company in the industry that would complement our offerings.

Your key initiatives for the success of the Business?

Same as above.

Your most difficult moment at the Business? (and what did you learn?)

The most challenging time for Indovance was in 2008 and 2009 during the U.S. market crash. Indovance lost a lot of their clients because their clients lost a lot of their clients, and Indovance business dropped drastically within a matter of months. The outlook was grim as to how we would not only survive over the long-term, but how we would stay in business over the next year. This forced not only Indovance, but me personally to rethink how we were doing business – both right and wrong – and how we were going to rebuild. This forced introspect resulted in us as a company making a lot of changes in terms of team building, hiring the right people, setting in place the right processes and reaching out to the right market. It took two years, and was a long and hard process, but as I look back I realize it was a good thing for Indovance because we came out much stronger than we were before.

Ideal experience for a customer/client?

Indovance is a business solution. Our clients are looking for scalability, access to talent, reliability and quick turn-around time. CAD services happen to be a tool to provide them that experience. Therefore, an ideal experience for our clients is for them to have a seamless partnership with Indovance so that Indovance does not feel like a different entity, but rather an extension of the client’s in-house design team.

How do you motivate others?

I feel people are driven by their own motivations. Rather than motivating others, I believe in figuring out and understanding what it is that each person wants to achieve - what are their passions and career objectives – and does that align and fit in well with my personal or company’s agenda. If there’s a synergy, then that automatically creates a win-win situation and helps the individual and team super-perform.

Career advice to those in your industry?

My outlook is that every person should be driven by their passion and what excites them. The industry or work specifics is often temporary in the bigger picture of a 30 or 40-year career.  Hence, doing what you love is the key to career advancement and happiness in general.