Vikram Joshi

WorkKafe, Founder
MS in Operations Research

Vikram started an online restaurant called Desi-Columbia while he was still in Columbia. Desi-Columbia was targeted at students, specifically overseas students. Not being a foodie, Vikram soon moved on to his next adventure, which he would name Military-Value. Military-Value was an online general store for US military personnel. The basic idea of Military-Value was to empower young military personnel to have a taste of luxury irrespective of their credit history or lack of it. Before he could go further in development of Military-Value, Vikram hit some ethical issues with the business development part and decided not to go with it.

Vikram's current venture, WorkKafe, is a software consulting firm. Vikram thinks there is always an optimal way to do things. In fact, one of the main reasons he chose Operations Research as his masters major was the fact that Operations Research teaches techniques to optimize operations. While working on some software projects, Vikram realized people he was writing code for, including his peers from Engineering and Business schools, were very cautious about working with freelancers due to low trust factor. But at the same time, as they were just starting the business, they did not have privileges of hiring an IT firm to look after their technology needs. That is what made way to WorkKafe.

WorkKafe materializes the best of both worlds. It takes the low cost factor from freelancers and high trust factor from big IT firms. Vikram devised an algorithm to employ the WorkLancers. Based on a freelancer's performance on WorkEntrance test, his/her educational background, projects and employment history, this algorithm assigns WGPA (WorkKafe Grade Point Average) to the freelancer. To qualify as a WorkLancer, a freelancer has to have and maintain a certain minimum WGPA.

At Columbia, Vikram enjoyed the Entrepreneurship related courses the most. For students who are interested in Entrepreneurship, Vikram recommends "Managing Technological Innovation" by Dr Jack McGourty and "Entrepreneurial Business Creation for Engineers" by Dr David Gulley. Vikram also advises students to participate in extra curricular activities as much as they stress upon studies. During his time in Columbia, Vikram sat on the Engineering Graduate Student Council (EGSC) board as Treasurer after representing IEOR department for a semester. Vikram was also Vice-Chair in Interschool Governing Board (IGB).

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