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Simplifying Things Brings Rewards



As the fourth-generation scion of a 112-year-old jewellery house, Vijay Davanam, Chief Product Officer, Davanam Jewellers, Bangalore was destined to join the family business. After graduating as a gemmologist from Gemological Institute of America, New York, Davanam pursued a post-graduate MBA in Family Business Management. After finishing his studies, he worked in another company for three years learning more about precious gemstones and diamonds. It was only in 2011 that he officially joined the family business and since then has been at the forefront of all changes in the company.

When I came to the family store after having worked at another place, I was struck by the time-warp that it was stuck in. I hadn’t realised it earlier but now it was in my face. Every detail regarding a product was handwritten, and in cases where a change was required, it would turn out to be a nightmare as the entire detail had to be written down and then sent to the karigar for execution. And by a stroke of bad luck, if the measurements went slightly awry, then the piece had to be made again. All this only resulted in waste of time and money. I decided to sort out the matter by bringing in a product information sheet and computerising the entire process.

“I innovated a product information sheet software in which we fed in all information regarding the product – height, weight, purity, colour etc. Once a product came into our inventory, every detail of the product was listed out and this was made available to everybody concerned with handling the product. Everybody in the backend, at the click of a mouse, was able to see any information concerning the product. Over a period, this style of working became a matter of routine. Now, whenever a product comes for repair, the goldsmith is aware of all details, thus saving unnecessary hassle of making a mistake.”

This process has made backend facilities more stringent, and eventually helped in our expansion plans. With the product information streamlined, we went a step further and centralised the Enterprise Resource Platform (ERP). This helped in giving information about a particular product available in different showrooms. This resulted in making auditing easy. It made it convenient for me not to be present at different branches all the time. I could monitor the products from one particular showroom without visiting the other showrooms.

The changes were not easy to bring in as senior family members couldn’t understand what I was trying to achieve. They refused to move with the times but I was convinced that I had to bring in the changes if we had to grow. At one point it got very difficult and I was dismissed as not understanding how to do business. But I kept at it. I was determined to prove them wrong.

Once the systems were in place, it became easy for us to interact with the clients. Moreover, all the confusion that used to result with handwritten notes, became a thing of past. Elders in the family soon came around to this reality but the cherry on the cake was when we got a customer satisfaction award in 2015 from the UBM Group. It boosted our confidence that what we were doing was right. Eventually, the seniors were also satisfied and accepted my

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