Connecting Software wants to double workforce by 2023
The objective is to grow from the current 20 workers to a maximum of 40. The company's CEO also highlights the multiplier effects that the region would have if it attracted more business.
Connecting Software changes facilities due to lack of space and is already accommodating the need for hiring. The company's plan, led by Thomas Berndorfer, is to double the team members by 2023, from 20 to a maximum of 40. Currently there are vacancies in the sales department and in the technical department for the position of solution architect.
Among the company's goals is also a greater balance in the workforce in order to bring a more international culture to Connecting Software. At this time 65% are nationals (of which 70% are from Madeira) and 35% are foreigners.
“We would like to have a good mix. It's good for local people to work in an international environment. And it's good for foreigners to work with locals. It's a fruitful combination. One of the problems we had in the past is that the Portuguese business culture is a lot of emotion and relationships. But in English, Scandinavian or German cultures, it is necessary to be more precise and go faster”, says the CEO of Connecting Software.
“Since we do most of our contacts internationally, we need to have good English. People who work with us, and who have a lot of communication with the customer, should not translate Portuguese into English, and then respond. You have to think in English. And that can only happen if we have a combination that is mostly spoken in English. And that can only happen if we have people here who don't speak Portuguese. If everyone spoke Portuguese, no one would speak English”, stresses Thomas Berndorfer.
The entrepreneur gives examples of the differences between different cultures and the need for adaptation. “If someone from Russia says 'he's working' it's a compliment, if an American says 'he's working' it's a negative. If it says it's good it's OK, if it says it's fantastic or spectacular then it's good. You need to understand different personalities, different cultures, how they are and how they are thinking. This is the communication part”, reinforces the CEO. “The product part we build on the basis of experience and needs. The product does not sell itself”, he explains.
Berndorfer believes that it is necessary to be the “best supplier for the customer” and not the other way around.
“We have to make the product, and product communication is not just a piece of software. The product is the first step in marketing, presentation, testing, support, communication, etc. All this together makes the product. If I have a BMW, and nobody can repair a BMW on the island, do we have a good car? It's a good car, but we need maintenance. If we only have one person who can repair a BMW, and he is rude, insult you, you would not like the car because service is a part of the car. The product is a part, but everything around it makes the overall solution. This is easier to find with an international team. If, for example, it had exclusively a team of Madeirans, it would make a good product for Madeirans, but would it be a good product for other countries?”, considers Thomas Berndorfer.
Madeira should bet on attracting companies
In the January 3, 2020 issue of Económico Madeira, Thomas Berndorfer spoke of the dream of having Madeira as a Silicon Valley. This dream will not be so unrealistic, with the CEO of Connecting Software noting that "many people see Madeira as an interesting hub", noting that the autonomous region has good internet connectivity, in addition to the beauty of the island and its lifesytle quality.
“My vision would not be to bring more tourists, but to bring more business to Madeira. We can make a company in Madeira for the world”, defends the CEO of Connecting Software.
Thomas Berndorfer believes that by bringing more business to the region “we bring more people here”. Connecting Software's CEO reinforces that, for example, “bringing 20 people here, we have 20 homes and families. These people consume and spend money. The money comes to Madeira, to the company, and the company gives money to people, and people give money to Madeira”.
The company's CEO adds that although part of the money goes to taxes, "all people's consumption is in Madeira". “If you work here, you spend the money here. If you spend the money here, everyone benefits from the money you spend here”, he defends.
Thomas Berndorfer explains that this person “is no longer a tourist who spends a few weeks' holidays here. He is a worker who stays on the island and consumes for a long time. This brings value to Madeira”.
The company's CEO argues that Madeira “is a beautiful island, life is good, life is balanced, there are friendly people, sun, good weather”, stressing that the region “has many opportunities, the question is if you can see these opportunities and if you can realize them”.
Thomas Berndorfer also talks about the region's exposure to tourism and what happened to the sector during the pandemic, and because of that, he warns of the need for alternatives.
“Just thinking about tourism is, in my opinion, a bad thought. It is necessary to have balance and diversify”, he says.
Connecting Software was launched in 2004 through Cross National Solution. It arrived in the United States, through Connecting Software Inc., and in Madeira in 2017.