Startup for 10: Gapsquare
Gapsquare is the software development and HR tech company revolutionising the problem of fair pay. Since founding Gapsquare in 2015, the business has grown to a team of 8 people. In that time, Gapsquare has been spotted on the global stage, working with clients throughout Europe, Australasia and Africa to tackle gender, ethnicity and wider pay inequalities.
Answering 10 questions about Gapsquare is CEO Zara Nanu.
1. In your own words – what do you do?
I am the CEO of a company called Gapsquare. Gapsquare is a leading provider of fair pay, pay gap and pay transparency analysis software, developing intuitive tools which empower businesses and HR teams worldwide to build equality and diversity & inclusive practices into everything they do.
The Gapsquare team is made up of data, tech and AI experts and experienced equality and diversity practitioners who have built FairPay® to allow companies to move forward on building the fairer workplaces of the future.
2. What’s the most exciting thing about what you’re doing?
Bringing tech and AI closer to building the world we want to see, which includes and belongs to us all and is representative of the people who will benefit from it. We work with large companies who generate regular reports to monitor whether they’re paying employees fairly and are developing predictive analytics that will show companies when they are on the road to creating equal pay or pay gap issues.
It can be so easy for employers to be so caught up in the day to day of keeping employees happy and productive that they miss when larger issues emerging around who is progressing and thriving at work. I think we can transform that and by offering software that employers can check-in with to make sure they’re doing the best they can for their people.
3. What are you most proud of so far?
My team – many of whom have been on the journey since the beginning. They have not only thrown themselves into the work, the cause and the drive to empower employers to improve employees’ lives, but they have also been incredibly adaptive and quick to learn.
Real talent is talent that grows and steps up when a company needs it; I’ve seen that in my team repeatedly. You can often catch our brilliant VP Growth & Partnerships Sian Webb and CTO Ant Kennedy speaking at events and conferences around the world – their passion for their work is obvious. I recommend you check them out.
4. What have you found most difficult about being a startup?
You set up a startup because you believe in what you’re doing, you see a market opportunity and you know you can offer a real solution. However, the market can sometimes need a little help preparing for advanced technologies.
It takes grit to turn the market around and get individuals to see that there is an easy way to do what they may have been doing in the same way for years. We’ve put fair pay software on the agenda, and now we’re seeing the tides turn, but it takes resilience and patience.
5. What would you do differently if you started now?
Everything that we’ve done has been a learning process and a journey of self-discovery. There are lots of things that I would have moved faster on and lots of processes that I wouldn’t have taken so much time over but these things taught me and my team a great deal.
I think we’re stronger now because we know when to act and when to park a piece of work that’s not going to pay off for our customers and the wider community.
6. Where do you think you’ll be in 12 months?
In the Caribbean. On a yacht. Hopefully?
7. What tools/people/services/organisations from the cluster have helped you most?
TechSPARK has been a huge source of support and guidance (and I’m not just saying that). It’s been a pleasure getting involved with their events and initiative and has made a real difference to our journey overall. The Female Founders Forum run by Paul Forster of SETsquared has been another great place to touch base, collaborate and grow.
8. What’s the best thing about the Bristol & Bath tech cluster?
The support and sense of community and the opportunities for knowledge exchange. The amount we have learnt just by talking to and sharing stories and experiences with other startups is impossible to put a price on and it’s hugely helpful at moments of tribulation and triumph.
9. Who will you be nominating for a SPARKie next year?
Fresh talent! We’ll be keeping an eye on the SETsquared Bristol breakthrough bursary scheme for sure. Interactive Scientific is also smashing it; we’re big fans of the impact they’re having in schools.
10. Where can we find out more about you?
At the Gapsquare website!
Thanks to Zara for taking the time to talk to us.
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