Elizabeth Wasserman: Why did you need new business applications?
Andrew Bartels: When I first came to the firm in 2004, there was Microsoft Excel and paper. It was a company that had done little with technology probably for the past five to 10 years. We were confronted with an opportunity to overhaul the entire infrastructure, which we did. In a medium-sized business, I needed to focus my dedicated support staff on supporting our primary applications. And yet we had so many different parts of the business that could benefit from new applications.
We employ a lot of people and we’re always recruiting and hiring. We have a full time recruiter. At first, she was attempting to track all of the resumes and all of the follow up using paper. She was actually hauling around a legal style file briefcase. By implementing an HR Web application from QuickBase, we allowed her to eliminate that paper and to work out of anywhere and have access — from home, one of our branches, or Starbucks if that’s where she happened to be.
Wasserman: Why did you opt to use Web-hosted applications?
Bartels: We wanted these applications to be actually separate from our core system. Like many companies, we’re very focused on security and the security of our customer information. The fewer people that have access to that information from outside of our corporate network infrastructure, the better. One of the main reasons, as well, was we wanted something that was easy to get up and running and had a back end that was administered by somebody other than our support staff. We wanted our support staff focused on our core customer-facing systems.