CLIENT FOCUS: Q&A – Fred Thompson Clarus WMS
We met up with Fred Thompson (pictured below), Chief Technical Officer at Clarus WMS, who offer a solution to all your warehouse needs, to chat with him about his typical working day, business challenges as an SME, and exciting plans for the future.
1. What is your business?
I’m the Chief Technology Officer at Clarus Software, featuring ClarusWMS, a cloud-based Warehouse Management System (WMS) that enables modern logistics companies to run their warehouse effectively and to its maximum capability.
2. Which solicitors do you use at Bermans and how do we compare to other firms?
I mainly converse with Jon Davage, and his knowledge of the sector is second to none, has an incredible network of connections, but additionally – and most importantly – genuinely wants to assist and add value to any question thrown his way.
3. What are the biggest challenges you face in growing your business and maintaining profits?
We’ve created an industry leading solution that continues to improve each day. As we’re a true cloud software-as-a-service product, we can continue to innovate and roll out new features to the end users daily. This advantage allows our solution to continuously improve our customers business operations and makes the solution very sticky, allow us to retain customers to a high level.
As we’re true cloud, our operating costs for the software benefits from economies of scale and doesn’t directly increase with every new customer we bring on.
Our main challenge however is very similar to most businesses, and it’s managing the cashflow to enable our business to scale and continue to add customers to our platform.
4. Tell us about your typical working day?
The majority of the day consists of designing and architecting the latest features of ClarusWMS and discussing with our development leads the correct approach to make sure it’s scalable and flexible for all current and new customers. Alongside that, I’m often assisting in the more commercial sides of the business and attending calls to demonstrate our infrastructure and redundancy design to demonstrate confidence that we’re well positioned to operate such business-critical software.
5. How has the business fared through the Covid pandemic?
We’ve seen huge growth. As more e-commerce and shopping from home took hold, the demand on logistics increased. It was a trend we were witnessing prior to the pandemic, but it certainly was an incredible accelerant for change. Our platform’s ability to be implemented into new or existing warehouses so quickly, without any heavy up-front costly infrastructure has allowed our customers to scale quickly as the pandemic took hold.
6. What are your plans for Clarus Software Ltd for the year ahead?
We’re looking to continue on the same path. We’ll be adding more features each and every month (including various integrations with e-commerce platforms) and looking to scale our teams to ensure we can continue to deliver to our existing customers and bring new customers on-board.
7. Is there are sector or industry that you are strong in or looking to develop opportunities?
Our platform is an excellent choice for Third-party logistics businesses (3PL), as we have various features that enable the management of the stock accounts for each customer, and the platform will additionally allow each customer to access the platform live, but with restricted and relevant access.
8. Do you find social media assists your business and if so, how?
I think it does, but it certainly could do so more than we currently take advantage. We write blogs each week around topics in the industry and publish and promote them, but we could still improve on this and look to “shout about” what we’re doing a little more. The logistics space is a tight community and the more aware potential customers are of your involvement with similar businesses, the more strongly it reflects on our us.
9. If you were chancellor, what single change would you make to help improve the economy and/or your business?
I think business rates are one of my main frustrations, and this even applies to office space and not just retail. As the economy moves back into a hybrid remote/office approach, the more incentives the chancellor can provide that encourage businesses to provide an office will go a long way in building back towns and cities and the supporting economy.
10. What are your passions away from business?
I’d like to think I’m interesting, but in fact my passions are rather dull, as they largely relate to my business. I enjoy understanding business in general, from strategy, marketing, investment and sales; and have a rather understated interest in politics and how it operates. I’m also a developer at heart, so I keep a keen eye on the progression in technology. I’m rarely often happier than when I’m on my computer! On a more social level, I enjoy skiing and football – but this is mainly just watching football nowadays, as my legs are less enthusiastic than they used to be!
11. Do you have any business tips to share with our readers?
One of my main approaches that has stood me well so far is to run your business assuming everyone can and will know everything, so ensure that whatever you do is not only good intentioned, but fair and honest. If you negotiate a special pay increase for a certain member of your team, you can be pretty sure that their colleagues will find out and this will trigger a decrease in morale and a problematic culture almost instantly. If you stay honest and transparent to those within your business the culture is fostered around that, and efficiency and productivity will come with it.
To get in touch with Fred at Clarus WMS:
t: 0161 302 8880