Software Executive Magazine

December 2017

Software Executive magazine helps software executives grow their businesses by showcasing the business best practices of our readers, executives from established and innovative software companies.

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Page 19 of 43

changes meant AbacusNext was losing market share in fistfuls. Shortly after Lezama came on board, the compa- ny surveyed all of its clients. An astounding 68 percent re- sponse rate made it clear: Attorneys knew they needed to be in the cloud, but they didn't know how to get there, and they wanted AbacusNext to show them how. Clients started migrating rapidly after the software was reengineered to deploy as a private cloud model. Growth was accelerated by the back-end infrastructure built during the redesign, which gave clients the ability to house all applications and converge them into a single sign-on, two-factor, authenticated virtual desktop space. This also meant AbacusNext could handle security for all of its clients' data. It was quickly apparent that the com- pany would have to scale quickly to meet the demand its revamped software created. "At that point, I sat down with my management team and I said, 'Look, we have a great problem, but a big one at that: Demand is explosive and we simply don't have the time to go through conven- tional methods in hiring our staff,'" says Lezama. "We were creating departments overnight. We had to create a quality assurance department overnight. We had to cre- ate a client support team overnight. We had to create in- tegration and provisioning departments overnight. How do you do that one employee at a time? You can't." AbacusNext had to reconfigure its hiring process just like it had done with its software. In Lezama's mind, the conventional hiring process in corporate America is backwards. Filtering through hundreds of resumes try- ing to isolate a few dozen, setting up phone pre-screen- ings, then scheduling several rounds of interviews — it all takes too much time. Fast-growing companies need a way to turn the tables and have applicants do some of the filtering. And AbacusNext found a way to get in lessandra Lezama was employee number 29 when AbacusNext hired her as CEO in September 2013. In the four years since then, Abacus- Next has transitioned to the cloud, which resulted in the kind of rapid growth that required rapid hiring. The company now has more than 350 employees in its sunny San Diego office. And it's been hiring these new employees en masse.'s recently re- leased report on average hiring times shows U.S. companies take an average of 23.8 days to hire a new employee. In the "Computer Software and Hardware" category, the average time to hire is 23.9 days. Even with some round- ing, AbacusNext would have had to hire someone every 4.5 days in order to add 320 employees since Lezama took the reins. The company didn't have a small army of recruiters or an expansive HR department to shortcut the process. Instead, it threw the "hire slow, fire fast" mantra out the window and instead used open houses as mass hiring events to ramp up its headcount. R E D E S I G N I N G S O F T W A R E & H I R I N G When Lezama started at AbacusNext, the company was in 5,300 square feet of office space. Founded in 1983, the law firm practice management software company (which recently entered the accounting firm market, too) has amassed more than 250,000 users. But technology A B B Y S O R E N S E N Executive Editor @AbbySorensen_ h i r i n g f a s t t o k e e p u p w i t h r a p i d c l o u d g r o w t h EXCLUSIVE FEATURE STAFFING By A. Sorensen HIRING FAST TO KEEP UP WITH RAPID CLOUD GROWTH SOFTWAREEXECUTIVEMAG.COM DECEMBER 2017 20

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