#FeatureFriday: Victor Mwago from CallPesa, the Dialler that makes Billing Clients Easy

Feature Friday is a column highlighting people making a difference in different fields. This time round we have Victor Mwago from CallPesa. If you want to be featured email mail@tech-ish.com

Who are you? And what motivates you? 

My name is Victor Mwago, husband, father, lawyer and a technology enthusiast. I’m driven by the desire to do things well — not perfectly, but well. I draw satisfaction from making products and services increasingly better.

What did you study in University? And if there’s a shift from it to what you currently do, what was the motivation behind that shift? 

I studied law but I have always had a penchant for technology of all kinds. From trying out new apps, endlessly reading about developments in tech and pushing myself to learn how to code as well. I’ve been able to combine my law background with tech and building tools and creating process improvements for the field.

What is CallPesa? And why does it exist?

CallPesa (callpesa.com) takes the dialling experience to the next level by allowing anyone to automatically track, bill and invoice for time spent on calls with clients.

Technically, it is an Android Application that allows you to designate a contact or a caller as a client. It will then automatically track all calls between you and that contact and record them as billable time expended. This data is neatly populated in an invoice and can be exported whenever you need it by email to yourself or to any practice management system for aggregated billing. For the app to work as expected, it needs to be set as the default phone dialler once installed.

CallPesa was conceptualized at the height of Covid-19, to bridge the gap of profitable remote working for Knowledge Professionals who base their billable work in time. Knowledge Professionals include Lawyers, Accountants, IT Support Teams, Creatives, Health Workers, Consultants and Freelancers. Basically, anyone offering an expertise or know-how in a particular area and whose super conscious about time needs CallPesa. Research has shown that these professionals typically spend no less than 2 hours every day on client calls. Most of these calls are however not captured as billable and therefore not recovered. As a result, one ends up losing valuable billable hours even when the work is based on other billing models like Fixed Time or Value Based. Until now there has been no system that captures these calls in real time and automatically posts them directly to the firm’s accounting package.

What are the unique things CallPesa offers, and who should try it out?

CallPesa has a unique offering including:

Beautiful design

Separate your work calls and informal consultations from everything else by engaging client mode. Set your billing rate and CallPesa will actively bill all your incoming and outgoing client calls.

Ultra-easy to set up and get going

Automatically bill your calls based on self-defined hourly rates including at what point to start billing.

Call Context

Add narrative to call logs and create trust with the client. Link contacts to matters, and CallPesa automatically includes that as part of the phone log.

#FeatureFriday: Victor Mwago from CallPesa, the Dialler that makes Billing Clients Easy

Client Call Analytics

Super intuitive simple and clutter free design. Get a summary of your top 5 longest billable calls, top 5 highest billed calls, most frequently billed callers, and weekly billing trends.

#FeatureFriday: Victor Mwago from CallPesa, the Dialler that makes Billing Clients Easy

Integrations

  • Works well with WakiliCMS, Africa’s Leading Legal Practice Management Software.
  • Optional Zoom or Microsoft Teams For Enterprise Clients

What do you think about Privacy especially regarding data businesses collect from users?

Privacy is a human right guaranteed in our Constitution. Businesses involved in processing user data – us included – must operate on that principle and adopt privacy by design, meaning only data which is needed for the proper functioning of the app to work should be accessed and even then, offer opt outs and data deletion (known as the right to be forgotten in legal parlance). It’s not enough to just offer long winded privacy policies that an ordinary person cannot understand.

How long did it take you to get CallPesa to where it is?

We launched in November 2020 in private beta and since then we’ve been working with a couple hundred users who’ve helped us identify bugs, incrementally improve on the UI as well as suggesting new features to complement the core function i.e. call billing. It took us about 4 months between ideation and building.

Describe your contribution- plus your team’s – if there’s one – to CallPesa

CallPesa is made up of myself as the Ideator/Designer/Marketer/Compliance/Support person and NLS Banking Solutions (NLS), a software development company I partnered with to build the app. NLS handle the DevOps.

What is your vision for the company?

The focus right now is to build a product that can be used by many people not just professionals. To build, ship, seek feedback, iterate and repeat is our modus operandi.

Currently, how is the company doing financially?

We are self-funded and haven’t taken any external funds. We are pre revenue now.

Who are your biggest competitors and how do you differentiate yourself from them?

We offer a Contact Management Solution that cuts out the need to have fixed office lines, premium numbers, additional hardware, and expensive license fees. With that said, you can imagine the kinds of companies we are going up against.

What is the biggest risk facing your company?

Complacency. 

What do you do with your free time?

I enjoy documentaries, the occasional walk and jog and spending time with my family. I try to manage stress by doing the most challenging work in the morning. Being a morning person, I try to maximize those hours as much as possible.

As for big challenges, I try thinking them through using first principles. By breaking issues down into their basic concepts and trying to understand why something is the way it is, why hasn’t anything being done, and what can be done to improve. It’s really hard but it’s the only way to thinking and acting innovatively.

What are your thoughts on the start-up ecosystem in Kenya, and what are some of the challenges people may not understand about building a start-up?

Starting up is really challenging and over glorified. I think it was Elon Musk who said that doing a start-up is like eating glass and staring into the abyss – and that’s in a free-market environment where business and innovation drive the economy! Now imagine that in our country.

The only good thing I can think of is that it forces you to think long and hard about changing your surroundings.

What else are you working on?

Aside from CallPesa, I do have a fulltime job at a top business law firm.


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