The Munich startup KiwiHR has stepped up to create a software that is genuinely easy for human resource management. The startup with its headquarters in the Munich Technology Centre (MTZ) works with eighteen employees on their all-in-one HR-platform for SMEs. Our Seven Questions were answered by co-founder Reza Madjidi.
1. Who are you and what do you do?
We’re KiwiHR, a smart HR software that optimizes and digitizes administrative tasks for small and medium sized companies (SMEs) and startups. Our team of eighteen works at two locations on simplifying human resource management for SMEs and startups. KiwiHR has created an enjoyable and contemporary work environment.
My name is Reza Madjidi and I’m one of the KiwiHR co-founders. After completing my studies and working for large companies, I founded Yooniq Solutions in 2008 with Sacha Taghavi, who was my colleague back then and is currently my business partner. We now look back on more than ten years of experience in the field of software and HR, which was very useful while developing our second software, KiwiHR, which we launched in 2018.
KiwiHR is the founding team’s second startup
2. But that’s nothing out of the box!
There are several HR solutions on the market — and some of them are much more widely known than KiwiHR. That is absolutely right. Most of these systems also like to say they’re quite simple. But just because they say they’re simple doesn’t mean they actually are.
Our goal is to become the simplest, most inexpensive and most comprehensive HR platform for SMEs in Europe. And to reach that ambitious goal, we’re constantly refining KiwiHR in close collaboration with our customers. Our major focus is on the user interface and usability. We want our users to be able to use KiwiHR intuitively — without any expensive configuration or complicated product training.
In recent years as our company has continued to grow, we realized there wasn’t a simple solution for SMEs that effortlessly simplified daily operations in HR.
They were either too expensive or had functions that you simply don’t need yet in the early stages of a company. That’s why we’ve developed a simple and lean HR software ourselves to meet the special needs and challenges of SMEs.
100% bootstrapped and a clear vision
3. What are the three main ingredients in your recipe for success?
The absolute main ingredient in our recipe for success is our wealth of experience that we’ve collected in the field of software and HR since founding Yooniq Solutions. That experience was of significant help in developing KiwiHR. Because we as a small company understand the needs of our target group particularly well, we knew the functions we wanted to start with. We had a clear vision from the very beginning of how we wanted to make those functions simpler.
Another important aspect of our success is that KiwiHR is 100% bootstrapped. Although not everyone sees that as an advantage, we think it gives us exactly the freedom that is necessary to take care of the needs of small and medium sized companies. We don’t feel any pressure to catch the really big fish as quickly as possible. Building a successful company is a marathon, not a sprint. After all, what we’re offering is what many other HR software companies promise: the perfect solution for SMEs.
HR solutions for the German, English and French-speaking markets
The last ingredient in our success — as much as it sounds like a cliché — is the most important resource in any company. We have a fantastic, international team who all work together to make KiwiHR a great system. We currently offer our software and corresponding support in German, English and French. Thanks to our experience in different target markets, KiwiHR fulfills the needs of these markets in terms of employment law as well.
4. Now let’s get down to the nitty-gritty: How is business going?
To get right to the point: Business is going very well. The response to and interest in KiwiHR has exceeded our expectations. To meet demands, we’re also planning on additional employees in both of our offices. Since our launch a year ago, several thousand users now use our software, for example to record their daily workhours or request an eagerly awaited vacation. We have a clear vision that we follow and benchmark ourselves against each and every day.
“Munich’s startup scene is dynamic and tech-savvy”
5. What does Munich mean to you?
Munich’s startup scene is extremely dynamic and tech-savvy. We’re able to find everything we need here to successfully found a startup – an excellent infrastructure, great opportunities for networking and a multitude of universities that deliver amazing talent each year. For a few years now, the Technical University of Munich has been offering a degree in Entrepreneurship, which means it is the second university in addition to Ludwig-Maximilian-Universität München (LMU) to produce new, well-educated founders each year. There are also other institutions of higher education and research that ensure there is a broad pool of professionals who are eager to support and advance companies.
The focus of Munich’s economy is on research and innovation, which is what makes it the ideal location for tech startups and founders like us. In addition to the obvious advantages provided by Munich as a city, we were already in the middle of family life when we founded the company and, due to the multitude of local advantages, saw no need to question Munich as a city for founders.
6. How will your startup become the next unicorn? Or will we be seeing you at an Epic Fail Night soon?
Becoming a unicorn is not our goal, but if it happens, none of us would complain. We know how much enormous potential lies in our target market and will take a big piece of the pie. We’ve just started our journey with KiwiHR. We feel certain that you’ll be hearing more from us.
7. Beer or Prosecco?
As a Munich company, we would like to take the opportunity to declare our love of beer. Prost and thank you for the nice interview!