This week in our BuiltOnAir Winter Series we bring you Sai Warang. Sai works as a software developer for Shopify and is also an airtable enthusiast. 

Sai was born in India and grew up in Dubi and Abu Dhabi. When it came time to go to university he decided that he wanted to look a little further from home. Knowing that he wanted to study computer science, he came across Waterloo University located in Canada because of their great programming contests. Sia moved to attend Waterloo and has been cased in Ottowa, Canada ever since. 

After his time at the university, he began working for Shopify. Sai is a software developer for Shopify, which is a leading platform for e-commerce stores as well as brick and mortar stores. Sai works closely with the Shopify Capital Team. They focus on smaller entrepreneurs using the platform. They assess how well a store is doing and predict how well it will do in the next year and offer loans or cash advances to the business owners. By doing this, business owners can invest the money into their e-commerce store and are able to grow exponentially. 

Working with these business owners caused Sai to take a look at his own finances that he shared with his girlfriend at the time. This process is what lead Sai to create his Expenses Base in airtable for his personal use to track his own finances. 

Sai tried many different options to track his expenses but couldn’t find one that would fit his exact needs. His first exposure to airtable was from fellow employees that used the platform. He had doubts at first because the interface seemed too good to be true, but as he played around in the platform he grew to love airtable.  

Demo: Be on top of your expenses base 

  • Sai created this base 2 years ago and still uses it daily 
  • To him, this wasn’t a create a budget and stick to it base, it’s mostly to know what you are spending money on. His main goal was to gain awareness about his spending habits.
  • Includes a form that shows up on your mobile app to record expenses on the go 
    • Can select a category of expense, amount, how the expense is being paid for (CC, Cash, Debit Card, Checking Account), and notes about the purchase
  • Includes a reports feature to show income coming in and out 
  • Make it simple to record expenses 
  • Has an option to add recurring bills and one-time bills 
  • Bill payment log: Tracks what account is used to pay and for which bill 
  • Tracks Types of Income 
  • Sia and his wife use this base to input expenses on a daily base and then monthly to review how and where they spent their money 
  • The great thing about this base is that it can be customized to fit an individual’s needs with automation. 

Demo: House Plan Watering Schedule 

  • Sai created this base because of his wife’s love of plants and to make sure they were being watered and taken care of 
  • All the plants have a different watering schedule so this base was created to keep track of which plants need watering and when 
  • Sai took pictures of all the plants and recorded their names, location, and added their watering schedule in

Demo: Goodreads for research papers? 

  • Sai uses this base to track research papers that he reads or wants to read 
  • He can add where he found the paper, notes on why he wants to read it, subject, author, any external links 

Sai’s bases are a wonderful example of the many different uses of our favorite tool. He created his bases that allow users to easily utilize their functionality and customize them to their own needs. 

You can view Sai’s bases on airtable universe here

You can find Sai on twitter at @cyprusad

Here’s the video of the original podcast, including more of Sai’s story, and the live walkthrough of the bases described above:

Episode Video:

Here’s an audio version of the above, with links to download or share if desired:

Episode Audio

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