ChatWork CEO Discusses Path to 100K Milestone!

ChatWork has reached an exciting user milestone, 100,000 companies! CEO, Toshi Yamamoto recently sat down with the ChatWork Public Relations team to share how he feels about this big achievement!

More Companies Using ChatWork Motivates us to Take Product to Greater Heights

Public Reations (PR): ChatWork users are increasing day to day, and you might be getting a lot more feedback as a result. What have been the most thoughtful comments you’ve received so far?

Toshi: I’ve received numerous heartfelt responses from a wide variety of companies but I’m happiest when I hear customers say, “I can’t work without ChatWork!” and “there are many people whom I can only contact via ChatWork.”

Also, when I see people using ChatWork on their commute to work, for example, or hear of companies using it which are not deeply related to IT realize the true value of the product.

PR: That’s wonderful. When we held the ChatWork customer appreciation event on the fifth anniversary of the product, there were many customers who said they couldn’t get anything done without ChatWork.

Toshi: Yes, that’s true! The customer’s feedback always makes me feel happier and it motivates me to make a better product.

Responsibility for Maintaining a Solid infrastructure

PR: You might have experienced both triumphs and difficulties. How do you feel about those moments?

Toshi: Yes, I suffered distress. The more triumphs I experienced, the more difficulties I suffered, too. The hardest time I went through was about three years ago. At the time, I did not expect that the users would dramatically increase, so when the server could not support the increased amount of information and went down, I was very nervous and felt my heart breaking.

PR: It is scary just imagining that situation. 

Toshi: Yes, it is. I can break into a cold sweat thinking back to that moment. A few minutes after the server went down, the office was flooded with complaints and a need to restore it quickly. Our employees were startled, and even engineers could not figured out the reason why the server went down. I am not an engineer, so while the system was down, the only thing I could do was trust in them have faith that the system would recovered as soon as possible. Receiving numerous complaints, escalated my anxiety. It was a very hard time. 

PR: Hasn’t the server been down recently?

Toshi: No, it hasn’t happened for the last a few years. The last time the server went down was three years ago, but I think a lot of people might not know it happened because it was only for a few minutes. 

ChatWork is used by nonprofits, government agencies, hospitals and nursing facilities, and their trust in our service is absolutely paramount.

Not only ChatWork but also all other systems can’t completely avoid the possibility of a system going down. However, we can put operational structures in place for emergency preparedness and recovery methods just in case. For that, ChatWork reinforced the engineers and put the systems in place.

The more users we have, the heavier responsibility we have to take. The system hasn’t been down recently, but we are always prepared for any unpredictable situation.

Why ChatWork Is Focused on Increasing its Number of Companies

PR: Why is ChatWork so focused on increasing adoption amongst companies?

Toshi: Simply because ChatWork is a business-oriented collaboration service. Our goal is incease the number of companies to adopt ChatWork because companies don’t operate in silos. They work with other companies via vendors, consultants, through partnerships, business development opportunities, etc. We want the companies adopting ChatWork to introduce it to other companies they work with, too.

95% of companies in Japan are small and medium-sized businesses, so we want them to use our product to invigorate the Japanese economy. We care about the number of companies using ChatWork not just the number of individual users. If we only cared about the number of individual users, our focus could be only large-sized businesses and neglecting to focus on the majority of Japanese businesses (which are small and medium-sized) wouldn’t allow us to make a significant impact on developing the Japanese economy.

My Wish Is to Help the Japanese Economy by Boosting Productivty for All Businesses

PR: By the way, how do you feel about the accomplishment of achieving 100K businesses?

Toshi: I‘ve felt a strong impact on ChatWork’s growth from a thousand businesses to 100K businesses. I now feel more responsibility than ever before.
Maybe it is a bit of a pipe dream, but I feel that someday ChatWork greatly influencing the percentage of Japanese GDP and expanding to the world is a possibility. Since ChatWork boosts productivity, it can bring the potential impact to the Japanese economy, too.

PR: Then, it’s not exaggerating to say that ChatWork improves people’s lives.

Toshi: Yes, it very well can.

We’ll do our best to make ChatWork better and better. ChatWork will raise your productivity and change your life.

So, please introduce ChatWork to people around you. To achieve one billion companies, I’d be glad if you invited 10 companies per person!