Saju James: nurturing business ideas with comprehensive immigration service
Saju James: nurturing business ideas with comprehensive immigration service
Fragomen Immigration is empowering the business world to shine with its unique offerings and excellent guidance of Partner and MD, Saju James.
Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion. Saju James, the Managing Director of Fragomen Immigration Services India Pvt Ltd perfectly fit in this picture. He is a champion of the entrepreneurial world. He is raised with his desire, dream and vision and his own keen eye for business opportunities and his youthful sportsman spirit, which never puts him down. He started off as the Country Head of Fragomen Operations in India and in due time got promoted as the India partner and was later promoted as the equity Partner of Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy LLP– the global immigration law firm.
Saju’s personal journey is the perfect poster brand of the American Dream. He was born in a middle-class family in the Malabar region of Kerala. When he was 3 three years old, he was sent to a boarding school by his parents who have been hardworking visionaries who believed that investing in a child’s education is the best investment possible. It was a defining moment in his life – this place taught him resilience, strength camaraderie and made Saju the person he is today. Thereafter, Saju became a proud alumnus of Loyola College, India by Majoring in Personnel Management, Industrial Relations & Labor Laws, and graduating as the University 3rd rank holder in 1990. After graduation, he was scouted and recruited by Tata Consultancy Services (TCS). Saju’s professional graph in TCS is what constellations are comprised of. He rose to glory in lightning speed within the organization and became one of the youngest heads of Immigration and Legal Compliance in North America at the age of 30. Soon he was sent across the United States to work in varying capacities and within a matter of years; he was appointed the Global Head of the CMC human resources division and later became the Director of HR for the Americas division which had 15,000 employees.
While at TCS, he was a client of Fragomen Del Rey Bernsen and Loewy LLP – the leading immigration law firm in the United States. He formed close ties with the top partners at Fragomen. It was a one of a kind novel idea which was never before explored in India or even heard of. Saju always had an entrepreneurial streak in him and knew it deep within that his call was towards building something of his own and contributing to a greater audience by being a changemaker. The timing coincided with his other concern, a stable life with his family. He was also at a point where he felt that he has reached a career saturation point within the organization as there wasn’t much more scope for growth and the time was ripe for a change.
The entrepreneur in him saw the greater vision for the next fifty years, and he decided to take the leap. When he decided to return to India to set up the business model, Fragomen gave him the choice of choosing any city of his choice to set up the business, and he chose his native land for the business model. He began his venture as back-office operations with 5 employees and developed it into an operational entity catering to all 40 global offices of Fragomen and having nearly 700 employees and presence in all the major cities of India. In the beginning, the Global office was not keen on a client service model; it was developed later on and became Fragomen India’s greatest products. With services such as India Inbound, India Outbound, Managed Services Programs, etc. Fragomen India has become one of the biggest offices in the firm.
Inspiration for initiation
Saju has always displayed an entrepreneurial streak right from his childhood, and his leadership activities were evident right from his brilliant organizational skills back in school and college. The legal services industry in India was not very mature at that point, and that is where Saju saw his break and struck when the iron was hot. Fragomen was a comfort zone for Saju as he had worked with them before as a client, and he knew their client service and ethos. His market research was what cemented his decision to enter the entrepreneurial space.
An Insight into Fragomen Immigration Services India Pvt. Ltd.
Fragomen Immigration Services India Pvt. Ltd. is a one of its kind premium Immigration service provider for multinational companies with a focus on immigration compliance and strategy and providing legal compliance assistance from its partner offices located globally besides functional and operational assistance at the doorstep in India. From complex immigration challenges to outbound consular services worldwide, Fragomen is here to help. It partners with businesses of all sizes, individuals and their families to meet their unique needs.
In Kochi, Fragomen has a primary focus on providing outbound consular services worldwide. It works with our affiliate Fragomen offices globally to coordinate and streamline outbound consular immigration services from India into many different jurisdictions. These services are comprehensive and include preliminary eligibility screening, documentation and administrative application preparation and processing, consular and travel port of entry interview briefings, and consular debriefing sessions. Fragomen in India is Fragomen Immigration Services India (Pvt) Ltd., operating exclusively as an immigration consultancy and not as a law firm in India.
Globally established in 1951, Fragomen has grown from a respected domestic U.S. immigration law practice to a truly global organization. The expansion has been a direct result of their strategic decision to establish offices in the markets where clients would benefit from their on-the-ground presence.
Converting challenges into good fortunes
Fragomen is an expert with its global presence and informed consultants. With an increase in global mobility, which ensued opening up on economics, and globalization in the 1990s and 2000s, the immigration spectrum widened, and mobility increased which put pressure on MNCs to follow strict compliances and fool-proof strategies which would increase their ease in doing business and that is where Fragomen’s international presence comes into play, and its legal and consultant factors combine to provide a never before premium service to the client.
Success Story: from inception to present-day
The clientele includes large MNCs and fortune 500 companies. Maintaining client relationships is the mantra that drives the company. It constantly works on client feedback and has an internal mechanism to measure and ascertain client delight.
The core leadership team comprises Directors, Assistant directors, and leaders in Operations, HR, Finance and CS and various account managers. The company has a very vibrant team of managers, team leads, coordinators and associates.
List of Awards -2018
• Best Place to work in Kochi Award
• Best CEO with HR Orientation Award
• Promoting Health at workplace award
• Cochin Best Employer brand award
Saju Created Ways to Move Forward from Failure
Saju had a definite struggling period in his early days when he was trying to sell the business model to the clients and was trying to win them over. He faced multiple dejections from a lot of clients; he personally delivered the proposal after proposal to many clients, and it took nearly 2 years to get cracking.
Despite the slow start Saju shifted gears and slowly and steadily created a brand around the business model. So much that now, he lives in that era of his business, where clients recognize the brand for what it is and the approach.
The moment one realizes that giving up is not an option, going back is not an option; he will find or create ways to move forward.
Saju is an early riser and starts his day at around 06.00 am on normal days! He hits the basketball court followed by Gym every morning. Post that he spends the whole day at work and thereafter spends some quality time with his family. He enjoys sports, singing and listening to music and hits the bed in time to get 7hrs of sound sleep.
Saju’s journey is a story of sheer grit and will power. His journey is paved with hard work, an unquenchable thirst to succeed and make a mark. From being sent to boarding school for the best possible education, to being a rank holder of Loyola college, to being the youngest Director of HR at TCS and then being the Country head and now, Partner of the No.1 immigration law firm in the world – his journey is one that of a determined young man who took destiny in his hands and carved a future for himself by making the right decisions at the right time.
Saju is a sportsman; his daily routine includes playing basketball and other sports like badminton. Additionally, he is very interested in music and is a singer himself and never shies away from events where he and his family sing together.
Words of Wisdom – Saju’s mantra for today’s aspirants
Be it any domain that you want to enter, the time is right. The startup culture and the technological boom that is happening now should be harnessed by aspirants and used for their advantage. When considering a business always analyze the strength of the product and make sure you have the right product for the right market.