My professional career has seen me work as senior manager and consultant for some of Australia’s largest companies before deciding to create Compliance Master in November, 2011.
We are a Melbourne based company that has developed the World’s most advanced risk-based auditing and inspection software.
During the late 2000’s I was heavily involved in the restructuring of the Australian electricity, gas and telecommunication sectors.
It was during this period I realised there were some serious deficiencies in the way many companies were monitoring and controlling the performance of their contractors.
With no suitable software available I decided to take the plunge and develop my own. The new ISO 9001:2015 requirements that have just been released make me even more convinced my software provides a big help to businesses.
What’s been your proudest moment in business?
Our proudest moment is yet to come. We may be close to 4 years old but we still consider ourselves in startup phase.
Most of the past last 4 years has involved extensive R&D. Having now developed the World’s most advanced compliance auditing and inspection software our attention is turning to sales and marketing.
What mistake have you learned most from?
I think our biggest mistake so far is we started our marketing effort trying to pitch our software to too many market segments rather than focusing on just one and doing this better than anyone else. To some extent I think we’re still guilty of doing this, but this is what can happen when you have a product with so many applications.
What would you say is the recipe for success in your sector?
The first thing you need is a product or service that is going to deliver clear benefits to your target customers. Then you need the capital, passion and perseverance needed to promote your product or service in a way that sets you apart from the competition.
What have you learned about yourself?
I’ve learned that I’m a bigger risk taker than I thought possible. You don’t give up a secure well-paying career to take on something as big and risky as I have without being a little bit crazy. Of course, the potential rewards tend to justify the risk.
What has been your biggest sacrifice for the business?
I’ve never worked on anything for so long and as hard as this business, and I can’t see it stopping anytime soon. This has taken a major toll on my family and social life, not to mention my bank balance, but not many of us get an opportunity to be part of something so exciting.
Given what you know now, what would you do differently?
Looking back I often think yes, I would have done this and that different but when it comes down to it everyone needs to make mistakes in order to learn and grow. This might sound a little glib, but it’s true.
Who would you most like to employ in your business?
At the moment a sales and marketing manager. I need to do most of this work at the moment and quite frankly - well I’m an Engineer. Building a strong Australian customer-base is our number one priority at the moment. Once we do this, we can then take on the world.
Best piece of advice to other business owners?
If you’re intending to start-up your own business be prepared to work twice as hard as you ever did beforehand when working for a wage. On the other hand, it’s most likely going to be most fulfilling thing you will ever do.