Ausfit

As a global business operator, Marc Osmond finds himself operating across six time zones.

“If you’re going to succeed, you have to be available to whoever wants to speak to you whenever they want to speak to you; you just can’t just clock on and off between 9 and 5 as the digital age comes upon us.”

Marc, owner and founder of Ausfit, says digital technologies have allowed the company to operate on a global scale, with strategic partners in the USA, United Kingdom and New Zealand and development teams based in India and Eastern Europe.

“As a supplier of payment services and business management software, we have a heavy reliance on technology. Our culture is rooted in the idea of building long-term relationships and that can be a challenge when it’s not always easy to pop down the street for a coffee with the customer or visit them on site.

“There’s a correlation between how people embrace technologies to how simple and automated they are – if you can integrate them in such a way that doesn’t create extra load or cost to a business, then people will embrace digital technologies.”

“We therefore rely on connecting through digital technologies such as email, Facebook, Twitter, Skype and YouTube to maintain our relationships and brand,” he said.

“We’ve been hearing a lot about work-life balance over the last decade. The reality is that the more time passes, the lines between work and personal life become blurry and it’s really important that you manage your diary and prioritise effectively. If you don’t, you will quickly find you are working 70-hour weeks, week in and week out.

“As an employer who has to operate in all those time zones and not watch the clock, it’s more important than ever that when I do get the opportunity for recreation time I don’t want to drive half an hour to get there.

“Living on the Sunshine Coast means I’m five minutes to the beach and three minutes to a national park. That recreation time is precious to balance your lifestyle when you’re working so much,” he said.

“Promoting affordability and convenience is a wonderful way to describe operating a digital business on the Sunshine Coast.”

Marc says one of the region’s strengths is also its weakness: the labour pool. On the upside, it makes it easier to keep good people.

“There just aren’t enough opportunities on the coast that encourage people, especially in the 20-30 year age bracket, to stay. If there were, businesses like us could develop those people and encourage other businesses to do the same.”

Embracing digital technologies

Ausfit began in 1992, providing software services to the health and fitness sector including ClubWise, a fully hosted web-based product which combines state of the art club management software, integrated administration services and interactive sales/retention services.

In 2004 the company took an important step, becoming a payment services provider; processing direct debits from both bank accounts and credit cards. In 2013 Ausfit became one of a few Level 1 payment service providers in Australia, achieving the highest accreditation standard possible in terms of global security.

Marc says Ausfit’s service model allows business owners to work on their business easily.

“We take the technologies available and integrate them into one product that allows small businesses to leverage the digital technology, whether it’s automated Client Relationship Management, or email, dashboard reporting, or integration of billing services.

“In the past, businesses would have needed multiple providers, but we’ve integrated them into one supplier,” he said.

“There’s a correlation between how people embrace technologies to how simple and automated they are – if you can integrate them in such a way that doesn’t create extra load or cost to a business, then people will embrace digital technologies.”

For more information visit ausfitonline.com.au