THE FOUNDER’S STORY: A Q&A WITH ARUN SHRESTHA
What prompted you to start BeyondID?
I’ve had the good fortune to work inside some of the best technology companies in the world, from building services organizations at early integration and identity pioneers like SeeBeyond and Okta, to managing large enterprise software and services teams at Sun Microsystem and Oracle. That experience showed me that, even with the best technology, getting everything to work together inside a large enterprise can be very messy and few organizations have the skills and resources to do it well. This is especially true in security and identity, where the complexity is high but so are the risks.
When I joined Okta in 2012 to build its customer success and services organization, the company had less than 50 employees and less than 100 customers. The idea of using a cloud service to manage identity was a pretty new concept, and I spent 5 years traveling around the globe helping some of Okta’s biggest customers see the impact it could have on their business. We were incredibly successful and Okta soon had more than 3600 customers! But I missed being an entrepreneur and felt it was my time to give back to the world that has given me so much. I have worked for some incredible brands over the years, and I wanted to build my own and put the knowledge I had gained into action.
So my co-founders and I started BeyondID, a cloud systems integrator and managed service provider for identity and cybersecurity, to help enterprises operate in a different way. Cloud is all about speed and agility, yet most of the big SIs are still optimized for the on-prem world with giant deals that take months or years to finish. We want to free customers from the tyranny of this old GSI model.
You’ve been building successful services teams for a long time and seen a lot of technology shifts over the years. What’s one of your secrets to success?
I’ve worked with thousands of global companies, representing some of the most iconic tech brands out there – Sun, Oracle and now Okta. What’s been consistent across every successful customer engagement is having a service mindset — doing everything possible to turn a customer into a Raving Fan. My secret to success is assembling great teams across the globe who embody that service mindset, and channeling my team’s focus and energy on making every customer a raving fan.
What’s your company’s mission and why are you so passionate about it?
Our mission is to help companies become secure, agile and future-proof. We use those words very deliberately.
By secure, we mean that we want to be a force for good in the world. There are a lot of negative forces at play today with cybercrime and false information. The technology that is supposed to make people happier and more productive, can harm society and the economy. We want to help businesses put the safeguards into place so people can trust again, can trust them with their data.
By agile, we mean helping businesses use cloud as a platform for growth. This next wave of the cloud is fundamentally changing the way people build and scale a business. It’s a foundation for invention and innovation, and it lets businesses move faster than they ever could before. If we started BeyondID 10 years ago, we couldn’t move half as fast as we can today.
By future-proof, we mean helping businesses adopt an architecture that will help them become more resilient as things change and evolve. Because they will! If a business is building on top of the right technology, running services in the cloud, they can ride the wave of innovation happening at that foundational layer without being distracted from their core competency – serving their customers.
What three words would you use to describe your culture?
1) Innovation; 2) Integrity; and 3) Growth. We are innovative, with a high degree of integrity and focused on growth.
What makes the BeyondID team special?
Our global team is dedicated to the success of our customers, making every one of our customers a Raving Fan of BeyondID. Despite the fact that our team operates from many different locations, we are united in that purpose and it motivates us every day. Our focus on customer success is at the core of our business and helps drive our objectives, both as individuals and as an organization.
What do you think is the biggest opportunity (or challenge) for enterprises in this next wave of cloud computing?
Enterprises face a number of challenges in their digital transformation journey, including the security of their cloud environment, connecting their legacy systems with cloud applications, and managing implementation and technical support, all while controlling costs. BeyondID helps businesses across industries overcome these challenges so they can increase revenue, reduce costs and improve their customers’ experience.
Why do you feel Tercera is the perfect partner for you?
Tercera has the foresight to recognize the Third Wave of cloud computing will fundamentally change the market dynamics within cloud services, and the professional service organizations that support the vendors and customers in that market. Now service providers are not only a key component to an organization’s success, but also at the center of how an organization acquires, manages and deploys the applications needed to safely manage their users and resources. As former enterprise business operators, Tercera’s founders bring the experience, counsel, vast network connections and the growth capital required to accelerate our growth. We believe BeyondID and other companies will greatly benefit from Tercera’s expertise and their focus on helping growth-stage organizations succeed.