Fortude at 10&Beyond: How a Unique Culture is Driving its Global Expansion
Fortude, a global technology solutions provider, commemorates 10 years of operations. The past decade has seen its innovative solutions enable organizations in various industries to thrive. Being an Infor Global Alliance Partner and Microsoft Gold Partner for data analytics and data platforms, Fortude is a favored solutions provider to some of the world’s most prominent brands. From its humble beginnings, the company has grown with employees in the USA, Canada, UK, Australia, India, Sri Lanka, and project locations worldwide; providing global opportunities to its employees.
Despite the company’s rapid growth, Fortude has not lost sight of prioritizing its employees. The company’s learning culture encourages continuous professional development and has created a supportive, inclusive environment. As the company celebrates a decade of operations, three of its employees, Senior Vice President Infor Practice & Technology, Niranjan Vaidyakularatne, Senior Finance Consultant – Infor M3, Miranga Ariyaratne, and Associate Project Manager, Ranithri Samarawickrama, shared insights on their journeys at Fortude and the positive impact it has made in their respective careers.
Reflecting on Fortude’s monumental growth
“We grew out of a small team,” says Niranjan, reminiscing about the early days of Fortude. The company began with a small internal team of 18 individuals at Brandix, most of whom had backgrounds in ERP systems. 10 years ago, the conglomerate decided to commercialize this talented internal team. From that fateful decision, Fortude was born. Immediately after, they partnered with Infor to provide ERP solutions tailored to the manufacturing industry.
In those early days, Niranjan recalls how each team member focused on their passion for delivering robust solutions that delivered value to their customers. Despite the steep learning curve that accompanied working with different industries and versions of the software, the pioneering team persevered. As a result, Fortude carved a niche for itself in the fashion and manufacturing industries. Looking back, Niranjan states the early team’s collective passion and dedication enabled it to succeed by “Delivering solutions that outperformed those existing in the market.”
As Fortude grew, the company realized that nurturing and developing its employees would be critical for continued success. “We began establishing clear processes, training programs, and succession planning,” shares Niranjan, describing the company’s early initiatives. Fortude established an inclusive learning culture that encouraged continuous professional development as these efforts evolved. Today, the company’s commitment to its employees has resulted in exceptional solutions for its clients and a supportive culture for its employees.
The pillars of Fortude’s learning culture
Several factors have contributed to Fortude’s rise as a global technology solutions provider. It’s clear that the company’s unique culture has played a significant role, helping to attract and retain top talent. This has also fostered an environment of innovation that’s encouraged employees to grow and succeed. In conversation with Niranjan, Miranga, and Ranithri, it was clear that the three critical pillars of Fortude’s culture are Relationships, Empowerment, and Balance.
The importance of Camaraderie at Fortude
At Fortude, building strong camaraderie is a top priority. “From the beginning, our focus has always been on building strong relationships with our customers and team members,” explains Niranjan. This foundational philosophy is exemplified by the synergy across the company at all levels. Newcomers are made to feel welcome as part of the team alongside experienced professionals. Likewise, there’s strong collaboration between different practices, such as project management and software development, as every project involves combined efforts. Niranjan continued, “The encouragement we share by working and achieving together with our shared experiences has always been a big part of Fortude.”
Empowerment to build fruitful careers
Since its inception, Fortude has greatly enabled its employees to build fulfilling careers, by providing them with mentoring from senior staff, learning resources, chances to visit clients on-site, and more. Miranga shares that when he joined Fortude, he had to adapt and learn about Infor quickly. A steep learning curve was overcome promptly with support from his senior mentors and on-site client visits. It helped him understand how he could aid their digital transformation. Similarly, when Ranithri joined Fortude in 2018, she started in the Resource Planning Team but later transitioned to Project Management. The company provided her with resources to learn on the job and exposure to handling different projects, which she states “Helped me gain skills to grow professionally and personally.”
A healthy work-life integration
Fortude recognizes the importance of work-life balance and has taken measures to ensure its employees can achieve it. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the company quickly implemented a remote working model, allowing employees to work from home. Miranga recalls, “As both our clients and Fortude embraced remote working, my colleagues and I found we could spend more time with our families. It helped us better balance our work and personal lives.” Fortude prioritized work-life balance in the post-pandemic era and implemented a hybrid working model. By prioritizing work-life balance and allowing employees to adjust their schedules and work from anywhere, Fortude ensures its employees can maintain a healthy balance between their personal and professional lives.
Looking toward the future after a decade of success
Over the past decade, its unique culture, focusing on relationships, empowerment, and work-life balance, has played a significant role in its rise as a global technology solutions provider. In that time, technology has evolved considerably, including in the ERP space. Miranga elaborates on these trends by sharing that clientele now seek to utilize the cloud and new custom applications, which can help maximize the benefits of their ERP systems.
Yet, Fortude remains poised to capitalize on these developments, focusing on enabling digital transformations across industries. To realize this vision, Niranjan adds the company is now expanding its portfolio of capabilities and services. At the same time, Miranga shares that its consultants are also upskilling and evolving in changing times. As Fortude looks towards the next 10 years, the company remains committed to empowering its employees. Thus, even amidst changing technological landscapes, it is well-positioned to continue its growth and success in the years to come.