Building technologies that put people first and create better organisations
In 1997, Ashik Ahmed and his family migrated to Melbourne from Bangladesh. After graduating from the University of Melbourne with a Bachelor of Computer Science, Ashik devoted his career to build technologies that create better, more efficient organisations.
Today he runs Deputy, a multimillion-dollar company, and credits the business’ success with always putting employees first.
Ashik Ahmed came from humble beginnings, migrating to Australia at the age of 17. He was the first in his family to find a job in Australia, flipping burgers at a fast-food chain in Melbourne. This early employment experience let him see the challenges of managing a workforce from both the employee and employer perspectives.
His University of Melbourne degree set him on a journey that changed the trajectory of his entire life.
“My degree allowed me to get a position at Aerocare, where I met the Co-founder and Managing Director, Steve Shelley”, Ashik recalls.
Aerocare, an aviation ground handling business, had a distributed workforce across Sydney, Melbourne, Newcastle and Cairns, making it incredibly difficult to grow the business.
Ashik soon realised that people were at the heart of the business and were the key to its success. Using skills gained from his degree and knowledge acquired on the job, he set out to innovate how the company managed their workforce.
“In 2003, I built a platform for Steve Shelley that automated the process of employee scheduling and assisted in tracking and managing attendance at the workplace. The product changed the way he ran his business and was referred to as Steve’s ‘deputy’”
For Aerocare, this new system meant a more efficient workforce and led to rapid expansion and improvement in revenue and profitability.
In 2008 Ashik and Steve founded Deputy with a single mission ̶ to improve the lives of business owners and their employees. Today, Deputy is changing the way people plan and manage their work life by automating time-consuming tasks, lowering the costs associated with people management and keeping businesses compliant with workplace laws.
Reflecting on Deputy’s success, Ashik credits their ability to meet workforce needs in a way that best benefits their customers.
“I see the company you’re building as a community working together to achieve a clear common purpose and this keeps me motivated and focused. In my eyes this is what success comes down to and how a business is maintained through the years,” he says.