How long have you been involved with Cinode as CEO ?
I’ve been part of the Cinode journey since 2014. When I joined the start-up, I was the Head of Growth, and through meeting customers and various businesses I gained a lot of insights within skills management and its potential. In September of 2018 I took on the role as CEO. During that time the company was growing at a fast pace, going from a start-up into a scale up phase, which is a phase that I truly love from a management perspective. I am very passionate about building companies, strong company cultures, and managing the growth together with all amazing Cinoders.
Can you explain how Cinode works for businesses looking to use your platform – What are the main advantages of integrating such a platform for major businesses?
First of all, digital Skills Management and a transparent skill inventory aids companies streamline their decision making with regards to their daily operations and their workforce – How should we allocate our resources? Should we reskill, upskill, recruit or bring in external expertise?
With the data points about skills ambitions, availability and assignments, you get a clear overview of your workforce, their skill supply and eventual skill gaps. This helps you procure the best teams with a mix of skills, as well as it helps you match the right individual with the right assignment, with speed and accuracy.
For employees, the value lies in the transparency and visibility. The platform lets employees show their skills, experiences and ambitions, in order to be matched with the perfect assignment. The feedback we have received from customers is that this enhances the employees engagement in their own growth, as well as their motivation at the workplace.
IS the platform aimed at any specific industry or company size ?
With regards to industries, until this point we have focused on professional service organisations (IT consultants, Technical engineers, Management Consultants). However, we have started to see a growing demand in other “knowledge intensive” industries where services rely on skills and networks. We are now starting to expand our offerings to be able to help as many companies as we can, regardless of industry.
The platform is suitable for a range of firm sizes. We have big global corporations joining the platform, as well as giggers who join the platform via Cinode Market or via an invitation from other users. The platform’s embedded network drives network effects and business opportunities for both paying and non-paying customers. It is truly cool to see that global corporations as well as one-person companies benefit from the Cinode ecosystem in different ways.
Cinode has grown over 45 % in the last 9 months, and has come to be a leading platform for Skills Management – Why do you think there has been such a huge rise in such a small space of time ?
We see that more and more business leaders have started to understand that their skills are their most important assets, and to reach their full potential successfully they need to work with their Skills Management.
Cinode has proven to have a really good product market fit with regards to our customers needs and the demand for digitized Skills Management. With the pandemic affecting how and where we work (working from home becoming the “new normal”), we have seen an increased demand for a digitized Skills Management. Organisations still need to engage with and keep track of their workforce, their available skills and their ongoing/upcoming assignments. The new normal of the “digital office”has meant that everything has to be done through a digital platform rather than in person. With this, we have seen a rise in popularity as our platform supports this new way of working.
Furthermore, I believe that the growth is a result of the time we have invested in creating a strong relationship with our current customers and companies within the industries we are targeting. We currently have two main markets. Sweden and Finland. In Sweden, we have a strong footprint in IT technology and management consulting operations. This, I think, is a result of focusing on Skills Management as a subject and sharing our knowledge rather than just pushing for a product. We have taken the knowledge we have and created content around the product, such as our podcast and our newsletter, which have become “go-tos” for professionals in the industry. By showing that we understand the industry, and by sharing our knowledge about Skills Management, we have positioned ourselves as a thought leader in Sweden. A source of knowledge that companies turn to. In Finland, we have managed to build strong relationships with our customers and the industry, but we do not have as large of a market share as in Sweden, but we are well on our way. The goal now is to secure the position as a market/thought leader in Finland, and then do the same thing on the global market.
What do you see as the next challenges for you to grow the company and what does the next 18 months hold for Cinode
Our goal is to reach 1 million users by 2025. To be able to reach this goal, we need to grow our team. Finding the right talents with the right mindset is one of our top priorities at the moment.
To reach the 1 million goal we also need to go global. We know that there is a global demand for our product, and we currently have users all over the world (+20 countries). We have focused on Sweden and Finland the past couple of years to make sure that we build a solid foundation, but now we have finally reached a point where international expansion is our priority.
As you can see, we have a lot to do in the coming months and years, but we are all very excited to see where this journey will take us.