The Silicon Review
“Whether you want an Application Development, IT Infrastructure Services, IT Staffing Services, SAP Solution, IT Security Services, our experts with multi-faceted skills are here to help.”
Established in Illinois, AMBC is a micro-multinational, Information Technology Services Organization spanning across 6 global locations. AMBC is one of the best Global IT-Solution providers, as demonstrated by a loyal client base attracted and retained by the tactful combination of competitive pricing and excellent service.
AMBC is WBENC certified minority-owned organization. It is committed to delivering the best IT services to organizations of all sizes and serving clients worldwide to develop and integrate technology to achieve business objectives, through its various offerings onshore and offshore.
In Colloquy with Shanta M Balakumar, President at AMBC:
What led to the inception of the company?
I was a former employee of one of the big 4 consulting company. SAP had such a huge demand at that time and the company didn’t literally want to let me go, so I started working out of home supporting them with a lot of their recruiting efforts. Eventually, I had to independently represent myself and work with the limited functionality I had and in 2000, AMBC was born to make things legalized and conducive.
Can you talk about the projects that put AMBC on the map?
We were fortunate to work with some Fortune 100 and 1000 companies. The SAP implementation for these companies was done by the big 5 companies and they needed hyper-care and post-production support. These clients needed a firm that had the same kind of background as the big 4 to understand the implementation and support of their day to day business operation post go-live.
However, those were short-term projects; we gained most of our momentum and purpose when we realized that there were companies at the range of $200M-$500M–the Fortune 5000 companies, that couldn’t afford the price tag of the big 5 consulting firms. We served many clients who wanted the implementation to be at the highest quality as the big consulting companies but at a lower cost. I was very familiar with SAP standards and business best practices from experience and also because of our network. This is the moment where we found a purpose for our work; this is when the company really came into reality. Today, the average loyalty base of our clients is anywhere from 15 to 16 years.
What are the factors that make your company one of the best companies?
I believe it’s high value and service quality. We believe in accurate automation and empowering businesses through proper alignment of people, process & technology.
We contradict conventional wisdom or commoditization of IT professional services, that very-low price can be profitable at high volumes. We bring value with a very structured recruiting process. We ensure employees are driven with the purpose to work and we also believe there should be a good identification of skill set and the unique positioning for that skill set.
AMBC seek employees who have an aggressive appetite to learn, adapt to change, and be engaged in the clients’ culture. We are very selective about our employees. We make sure we train them and provide clarity on their strengths, and allow them the leadership opportunities so the client gets top class service. Furthermore, our people are more adaptable to the business requirements and seize opportunities to serve our clients. Our people are the greatest contributors in making our company the best.
Discuss the Challenges you faced in your initial years.
I don’t believe in gender battles and never thought that I was given the back row seat. When I started the company, I was in my 20s and didn’t know much, you are not supposed to know everything, and I was transforming my ideas into reality. I did not look to discover an idea that the whole world likes. It takes a lot of grit and heavy multi-tasking when we all have only a limited amount of energy in a day.
One of the major challenges was gaining the trust of a new client; nobody knew whether this person or firm should be trusted or not. The world is conditioned to receive any company only in a certain fashion. So, when you walk in and say what you see is what you get, people are not happy with that. But, we were very confident and we urged our customers to sample our services and 9 out of 10 times customers love our services.
Can you talk about the person who was instrumental in motivating you?
I come from a small town in India, called Madurai. Madurai has a female entrepreneur, Shobhana Ramachandran. She is the Managing Director of TVS Shrichakra Tyres Ltd. Shobhana Ramachandran dedicated herself to creating educational & Business Institutions for Madurai. Today, her educational institutes are ranked one of the best in India.
I grew up watching her and learned a few valuable lessons from her. I have never let any shortcomings or challenges bother or hold me back, either as an organization or individual. I don’t remember the number of times I have fallen down, but I remember getting up many times and still moving.
I always wanted to be an entrepreneur because it empowers me to better serve a higher purpose. Women have to respect and stand up for ourselves. So when I watched a woman come from a very conservative family with limited opportunities for women during her time to build these enterprises in her small town and grow, it nationally inspired me and kept the dream alive.
Do you have any new products that will be launched soon?
Yes. We have a Human Resources Application. It’s called an employability Index and we use it now at the center of excellence. We haven’t completed it for commercialization yet as it is still working in progress. So basically what it does is, it gives a complete overview by gathering a lot of information about the candidate. It’s not a test; it’s a combination of psychometric and technical evaluations that give a snapshot to the employer as to how suitable the candidate is for their company’s requirement. The application uses an algorithm, based on the tone of the candidate’s voice and various other factors and the applicant’s strengths are highlighted. It aids employers by categorizing, organizing, and interpreting the data and in helping employer-employee engagement be successful. Tapping into talent, expanding on possible applications of that talent to achieve great heights is the purpose of this application or tool.
What is the future roadmap for the company?
I don’t know if we are going to do anything drastic. We will continuously improve our service as our offerings are relevant with current trends . I believe we have a lot of work to do. AMBC is a client focused company for rapid digitization and personalized user experience for clients; We will invest in our core competencies, using advanced data and research techniques to create something great and grow our customer base.