019: Sourcing and Procuring with Efficiency


019: Sourcing and Procuring with Efficiency

with Heather Gillette

Heather Gillette is the Founder and CEO of Designer Inc. and has over 25+ years in online start ups. Heather previously worked at YouTube as the Founder and Head of Content Review, Copyright Enforcement, Abuse & User Support Teams as well as localized YouTube operations in 13 countries. A fun fact about Heather is if you Google ‘Heather Gillette YouTube’ you can find interesting case studies and articles about the work she did at YouTube. Her expertise is in building teams, automation and scale, localization and leveraging user community. She loves solving the impossible challenges and we learn in this episode what happened when she turned her attention to the interior design industry.

 Topics Mentioned:

  • Problem Solving

  • Efficiency

  • Technology

  • Sourcing and Procuring

Listen to the Episode

Thoughts from Heather:

  • With Designer Inc. I was trying to create a more affordable option for professional design. Sourcing was our biggest time cost. To be able to make that efficient and profitable, we needed to look at how to bring in other technologies we could adopt or leverage.

  • It was validating to see the flood of requests that started coming in that this software is needed and has been needed for a long time. The purchasing service came in from designer demand and it wasn’t just a search engine, but a market place.

  • Technology has helped solve many problems on the consumer side making things so incredibly easy in their own lives. However, manufacturers haven’t modernized their systems because they haven’t had to and the consumer market didn’t push them to.

  • I absolutely love having a smooth process after knowing it wasn’t a great process to begin with. We’re not perfect and we’re still building all these systems and making these processes smooth which takes money and time.

  • Integrity is critical in this industry because it is based on relationships.

  • One of the fears that we hear the most is designers don’t want to alienate their existing relationships with manufacturers. Designer Inc. buys through sales reps and showrooms so we aren’t cutting anyone out. We really try to honor that relationship between the client and their sales rep.