Subramanyam Reddy is a Co-founder and Managing Director of KnowledgeHut based in Bengaluru. Back in 2011 “Subbu”, as his friends call him, and two friends were looking for business opportunities and KnowledgeHut came as the answer, emerging out of a need to fill a niche in the market. Their ultimate aim is to provide high-quality global training solutions, through state-of-the-art facilities that will help enhance an organization’s workforce capabilities, streamline processes and put organizational business growth on an upward spiral. We sat down to talk with him this as we approach the year’s end, to find out more about the vision behind KnowledgeHut, and his plans for the future.
What prompted you to start this company, with so many others already in the market?
After completing my MBA from Osmania University in Hyderabad, I got into Marketing and Sales, and worked with several UK and Asian companies on business analysis, strategy formulation, knowledge sharing and product promotions. The profession took me across the world and gave me the opportunity to interact with a global audience.
The idea to start a knowledge-based company originated during one of these trips, when I realized that there was a huge skill gap among professionals, with respect to what they have learned and what is expected of them on the job front. My partners and I wanted to bridge this skill gap by providing a platform that took industry training to a new level; where expectations would be predicted ahead of needs and appropriate products launched that met and exceeded quality benchmarks.
We started with just 10 staff members and today we have branched out all over the globe, with our headquarters in Bengaluru where we have 200 dedicated staff working for us.
Tell me about the courses you offer?
KnowledgeHut mainly offers certification courses for IT professionals. The trainings are carried out through a variety of modes and participants can chose what suits them best, such as online, virtual or classroom courses, and also through the recently introduced mentor-based immersive boot camps. Every learner is catered to through the right delivery model which helps him/her learn the best.
We have recently launched courses for sales, operations, marketing, management and consulting professionals and our popular courses such as project management, agile and scrum management, ethical hacking, Big Data and Hadoop among others have helped skill up thousands of professionals from across sectors. Our affiliation with globally renowned accreditation bodies makes these certifications highly credible.
Tell us about your team of partners (co-founders).
Madarapu Nagaraju holds an MCA degree from Anna University. Having worked as a Software Developer and knowing the requirements of the IT training field has helped him to create the foundation for KnowledgeHut’s training verticals.
My other partner is Manjunath V who has a background in multiple areas with his core skills in data analysis. Together with the other directors, he oversees multiple sales teams and ensures smooth functioning of office functionalities. His efforts have been instrumental in creating successful sales pipelines in India, the Americas, APAC, Oceania, Europe and Middle East.
What makes KnowledgeHut different from all the other training companies that are there in the market?
Strict quality control measures are in place that ensure customer satisfaction of the highest order. In the training industry, accreditations play a huge role in establishing the credibility of the company and our affiliations with globally recognized certifying bodies is proof of our credibility.”
Professionals attending our courses realize that our primary focus is to skill them up to face on-the-job challenges and hence we bring them varied services in the fields of Enterprise Information Technology, Classroom Training, E-Learning, Virtual/Online Training, Consulting and Support Services.
Even though there are other players in the market, we are unique in that we create tailored courseware for corporates, like IBM, Tesco and Amex, according to their requirements…and offer course delivery in multiple modes for convenience. At present training is carried out in over 70 countries. Most of our marketing is through word of mouth and referrals, which stands testimony to the quality of the training.
What are the challenges that you faced?
As with all companies, KnowledgeHut has its own share of challenges to face in its everyday operations.
As a start-up, the company faced some hurdles in the initial establishment of the business. Initially, establishing credibility was an issue that was soon addressed by getting accreditations from several world-renowned certifying bodies such as PMI and Scrum Alliance. Currently, KnowledgeHut is accredited to 8 leading globally recognized certifying bodies, including the Project Management Institute (PMI®) based in the US, Scrum Alliance, CompTIA and APMG, among others. Being Authorized REPs for these institutes demonstrates that the company adheres to strict standards of training imparted; and these accreditations have paved the way for the rapid growth of the company.
There have been several challenges that come with conducting training sessions all over the world. However, now there are close connections forged with local trainers across the globe and the excellent customer support has served to instil customers’ confidence in our service quality.
How many professionals have you trained and what was the revenue of KnowledgeHut in the past year?
We have trained over 40,000 professionals across the globe, and during the last financial year, our turnover has clocked 4 million USD.
Have you raised any capital to run your company?
We used bootstrap funding to get our business off the ground. As our business is getting mature, we are now open for investments to initiate new ventures and expand the business.
What are your plans for the future?
While at present, we offer more of classroom and blended learning services, I believe that virtual classrooms are going to be the next big thing in education. KnowledgeHut is gearing-up to provide the best of this service to our learners while keeping pace with the latest trends in the industry.
In the immediate future, KnowledgeHut will be offering Consultancy services in Agile and can help businesses optimize their Agile management. By leveraging the experience of the company in all the fields of training that are imparted, it is hoped that soon end-to-end consultancy and advisory services can be established in each of these fields of expertise.
My future vision includes the creation of an online Knowledge Forum, a sort of meeting place where knowledge and educational services can be solicited and shared. This will generate new business and enhance our global presence online, while also providing professionals with a platform to meet and greet likeminded individuals and network for better opportunities.
What keeps you motivated?
Helping professionals upskill just in time, at an affordable price and at their own pace is what KnowledgeHut is all about, and when I see more and more professionals opt to do this with us, it’s really exhilarating. To be a part of every professional’s life, their learning and success is truly a motivating factor.
Interviewed by Usha Sunil and Shweta Arun
Writing is Usha’s hobby and passion. She has written widely on topics as diverse as training, finance, HR and marketing, and is now into technical writing and education. She keeps an interested eye on new trends in technology, and is currently on a mission to find out what makes the world go around.
A writer, traveller and culture enthusiast, Shweta has had the opportunity to live in six different countries and visit many more. She loves researching and understanding the Internet of things and its impact on life. When she is not writing blogs, she’s busy running behind her 6 year old with a bowl of veggies.