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Smartsheet CEO on the demand for productivity tools

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Mark Mader, Smartsheet CEO, joined Yahoo Finance Live to discuss the growing demand for productivity tools his growth strategy for the company.

Video Transcript

ADAM SHAPIRO: We're going to move on to our next subject. We want to bring in to this team Mark Mader, the CEO from Smartsheet. A lot of what's going on-- by the way, this company, they're publicly traded. You may not know it when you're dealing with your different companies. But--

[CHOPPY AUDIO]

So it's good to have you here, Mark. And also wanted to point out that you're launching new programs. And I have to talk about my ignorance in what it is you supply to companies because when you say manage and scale work via no-code tech with the enterprise class security that IT teams require, my question is, what does that mean?

MARK MADER: Well, Adam, most companies in the world have spent the last 10 to 15 years using basic productivity tools to manage their work. And when we think about managing work, it's the programs, processes, projects that they employ.

Were within over 80% of the Fortune 500, 90% of the Fortune 100, and about 90,000 other businesses around the world. And it's basically helping people within those businesses, not just IT but regular lines of business people, to construct and build processes.

And the need to manage work is only increasing now. The flow of information, the amount of data people are dealing with is exceeding what IT teams have the capacity to deliver internally. Smartsheet was formed to basically enable business teams to go get it done.

SEANA SMITH: Mark, what's the demand been like, really, for your business? I'm not talking about during the pandemic but, really, what you've seen over the past month or so because we've seen a number of companies announce their plans to either bring workers back full-time or launch a hybrid model, which really seems to be the most popular type of solution, at least right now.

MARK MADER: I think the last year has really been a forcing function for people to understand what's available. Our technology has been available for years. I think the last year, though, has really put a bright light on how people need to work. Whether that's in the workplace or remotely, these technologies are relevant.

But again, for someone to take advantage, they first need to know that it's aware. And I think the last year has been really fantastic and just making people, again, aware of what's out there.

SEANA SMITH: When we talk about collaborative work management, I mean, so many of us never thought we would be able to get through the kind of year we've all gotten through if we're working from home. How do you see that in the next year or two? Because we're returning to the office. But it's not going to be what it was in 2019. We're going to need more of the kinds of services you provide, right?

MARK MADER: Exactly. And I think what people have appreciated over the last year is that how we have been working in terms of eight to nine hours a day on video is actually not tenable. So if you don't figure out a better way to manage your process or your program or your project, you will likely not survive another two years doing it this way.

So again, that forcing function of trying to crack the code on how things have worked in the past potentially, really not being the recipe for the future.

ADAM SHAPIRO: When you take a look at your business right now, obviously, there's some cybersecurity concerns. We've been covering that a lot here at Yahoo Finance. But looking ahead to some of the biggest potential challenges that you face here going forward, what would be the one or two things that's on your radar?

MARK MADER: Well, I think it's really a merge between the demand for workers, for tooling to work better combined with the increased awareness within the security and IT groups to deploy and support products that are in compliance. So when you look at where we've focused the last three years, it's not just capabilities that excite end users. It's also conforming to the requirements of IT.

So when we think about governance, visibility, management, and administration, those are things that are not always present and things that consumers like. So we've tried to pair that ability to land with those business units. And then when IT is asked to support it at scale that it fully meets those conditions. And when we start to see the finance sector, when we start to see the government sector deploy these solutions, I think that's a really telltale sign that this category is maturing.

ADAM SHAPIRO: We wish you the best. And we appreciate your insight. Smartsheet cheat CEO Mark Mader.