During the COVID-19 pandemic, all of us were at least six feet away from each other. Social distancing became the need of the hour and we saw updates in every industry to cope with the change. Our housing societies, buildings, and complexes also made several changes to follow the rules instructed by the government. One of these changes was the use of technology to keep a check on people who were coming in and going out the society. but can you imagine how convenient it will be if these technical changes could be applied to the functioning of a society?
Society Now is a Pune-based company that offers an app-based solution to make people’s ‘living experience’ simple. This not only helps in making the work of Managing Committees easier but also keeps people informed and updated about the working of a society.
Team Sociobits got in touch with the Founder of Society Now, Mr. Tushar Zawar to know more about the company.
Team Sociobits: Could you tell us a little about your company Society Now?
Mr. Tushar Zawar: I am Tushar Zawar, the founder of Society Now and I have completed my Master’s Degree from the Regents Business School London. h=The inspiration to create this company was to digitize the unorganized sector of Housing Societies (HS) and also to create a digital platform to cater to all the needs to manage and operate a Housing Society.
I felt that it is the need of the hour as a person starts and ends his day at his home and to introduce a digital experience to enhance or make it convenient for the customer would mean that we have succeeded in our job.
Society Now is my brainchild and at this company, we digitize Housing Societies and Gated Communities. We started working on the prototype of Society Now in 2018 and we released our Beta Version. This helped us to identify the gaps and after extensive R&D and rigorous effort, we paved the way for developing the Release Version in January 2020.
Within the first 3 months of operations we onboarded close to 50 societies in Pune with a relatively small team post which COVID hit and to be honest we were impacted majorly by it.
Team Sociobits: What issues are you tackling through Society Now?
Founder: The major challenges faced in a housing society are to monitor and keep records of visitor entries, attendance of daily household help, and access to local service providers within their vicinity. Another challenge is maintenance collection and reconciliation through traditional methods which are tiresome and tedious. Problems like these only increase the work and efforts the Managing Committee has to put in, who anyway do a thankless job.
We have also observed that around 70% of the residents of any housing society have inadequate knowledge about the process of running a housing society & face governance issues or any other related disputes or issues due to this. This also happens because of the communication gap or absence of any effective communication medium amongst the residents of the housing societies.
To address these problems effectively, our aim is to digitize the societies through our app which consists of five modules:
- Digitized Gate Security: We have digitized gate entries and transitioned the housing societies from maintaining primitive book records to digital records
- Automated Payments & Accounting: Biggest pain point in any society is to manage this. We automate the entire cycle of payments and accounting which includes automated invoices, reconciliation reports, reminders, etc.
- Digitized Facility Management: We are digitizing the experience of managing the facility by providing digital alternatives which have a far better reach and can be tracked adequately.
- Local Services: We also want to promote local businesses and services within a set vicinity. We aim to create a hyperlocal marketplace.
- Society Echo: A platform for resolving governance-related issues related to any society.
Team Sociobits: How has your journey been so far and can you point out any major challenge that you faced during your journey?
Founder: I believe the initial journey of all startups is pretty much the same. We are at the forefront of trying to mitigate the problems and we are learning every day. Also, I don’t see a business without a challenge, so we are facing new challenges and we are well prepared to tackle them. One of the examples is sustaining during the COVID period in which a lot of companies from our domain have shut down however we have handled this exceptionally well and kept growing. The journey has taught and helped us to learn and analyze things in a productive manner.
Team Sociobits: Who are the potential competitors of your company and why would users choose you?
Founder: To be honest, this space was crowded pre-COVID, however at the moment a lot of the existing players have either exited or pivoted to other services there are some big players present in the market and we see enough room for all of them to provide their services and have a decent market share.
“A lot of companies from our domain have shut down however we have handled this exceptionally well and kept growing.”-Tushar Zawar, Founder of Society Now
The primary reason for users to choose us is the service and accessibility that we provide. Also, our positioning and offerings are different from our fellow peers. So, we can point out a lot of reasons why users would choose us.
Team Sociobits: Do you have any immediate goals set to be achieved this year? And what is your roadmap for the future?
Founder: This year, our focus is to expand our footprint to 5 cities and acquire 50000 + households. This is also something that we will be continuously focusing on in the coming years. In the future, we also aim to become stable revenue generation partners for any housing society to help them reduce their maintenance costs which would be a huge relief for the residents.
I would also encourage housing societies to digitize their staying experience and they can definitely think about us when it comes to this.
Mr. Tushar Zawar wants to keep growing and expanding the footprints of Society Now in India. With every sector turning digital, it will be a huge relief for people living in housing societies if these societies switch to more convenient and digital options.