George Monda and Florentin Bota, co-founders of CodexWorks tell us about digital solutions for businesses and the impact of the pandemic.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
George Monda: On a personal note, the lockdown, remote work and the lack of communication did pose a strain on the general well-being of all of us. As a company, the pandemic hit us about one month into the lockdown. It was a difficult time, but everyone pulled together and we did manage to fully recover in autumn and even grow by the end of the year. We focused more energy and time on communication, like weekly calls to just chat and see the whole team and more 1-on-1 discussion.
Tell us about you, your careers, and how you founded CodexWorks.
Florentin Bota: It’s an interesting story. We were schoolmates a long time ago and kept in touch over time. George chose a technical career, working as a developer for a large software company. I chose more of an academic environment, enrolling in doctoral studies and carrying out research and development activities. About 4 years ago, George came with a potential project for a transportation company and that is when we started CodexWorks, which focused on process automation. Over time, our team has grown from 2 people to currently over 25 people.
How does CodexWorks innovate?
George Monda: Since most of us have some background in automotive or the logistics sector, we feel we have a strong affinity towards this industry. We increase the level of digitization in the logistic sector and automate the business processes, to improve the efficiency of clients’ employees and make their work-life more fulfilling. There is a huge potential in this sector for all kinds of ideas to be implemented, from custom software that automates processes and communication to AI-driven improvements and even autonomous vehicles.
With our main client, we’ve managed to digitize a big part of their company and now we’re slowly moving towards phase 2, into AI. On the autonomous vehicles part, we’re working towards developing a platform for AV logistics to meet the future requirements of this sector head-on.
How did the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Florentin Bota: There was a direct hit during the lockdown period when some of our projects stopped or suffered a process of contraction. We are recovering and the prospects look better now. Many companies have realized how vital digitization is. We estimated growth for the next period and actually had open positions for new team members.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources and what are the lessons learned?
George Monda: I’d say we came very close to having to make one of those most difficult choices, letting people go. Luckily, we pulled through without having to cross that line. Some of us went for a couple of months into (paid) technical unemployment to keep the costs at a minimum. And we also received some governmental financial support which was very appreciated. The most important lesson learned from this challenge was that we have one of the most close-knit and loyal teams I’ve ever met. Everyone offered their full support for all of us to get through this.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Florentin Bota: The first step we took was to make sure we had an open communication channel with all our customers. We have created Slack workspaces to better synchronize in this (completely) distant period and we have created new processes to ensure the continuous development of our projects. From a business development perspective, we focused our efforts on LinkedIn, with good results. We found prospects to grow even more as a company.
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
George Monda: Yes, we did get financial support from the government, which helped us keep the team together and the lights on. It gave us the hope and confidence to push forward with our business.
Your final thoughts?
George Monda: In these troubled times, we are not alone. We are closer as a team and to our customers.
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