On Wednesday of this week, Dan Creamer of Avue Technologies Corporation and Mike Brown of Prepared Response came by the campus to talk about their respective companies and to meet some of the students who will be graduating from our programs. The students were able to learn more about companies that sold into the federal market and the presenters got the chance to meet with individuals who might be potential interns and potential future employees. Both companies have interned students before and have hired them as well. Today I will profile Avue Technology and save Prepared Response for the next iteration of the company profile postings.
Avue Technology has been around for some time. They were founded as a consulting business in 1983 as Washington Consulting Services (WCS). Their specialty was in consulting services related to classification, staffing, employee relations, Civil Rights and labor relations for the Federal Government.
It wasn't until 1988, though, that they began producing a software product. Called “ProClass,” it was a DOS-based software product that according to the companies history "incorporated an “expert system” that automated the classification process of certain Federal job positions." Their first software customer was the United States Air Force. Soon, ProClass was in use in over 125 Air Force bases worldwide.
Early in 2000, Avue started hosting its own applications in a data center and would customized and maintained all content and software for the client as a Software As A Service (SAAS) solution.
For some time, much of the development work was done way up north, WAY up north, because the company had a difficult time finding developers in the South Puget Sound. Several years ago the decision was made to do more of the research and development work back in the city where the company was founded, Tacoma.
Today, they have two distinct software development teams that have grown to a point that the company has acquired additional space in their building, on 11th and Broadway in downtown Tacoma. One of the teams, led by the aforementioned Dan Creamer, is made up entirely of alumni from the Computer Science program at the Institute of Technology here at the UWT.
Here is the software solution description from their web site:
Avue includes a bi-directional interface that integrates Avue data with other systems including Human Resource Information Systems (HRIS), payroll systems, financial systems, and time and attendance systems....
Our expert system rules engines, application functionality, content databases and IT infrastructure are all hosted in our secure data centers and accessed by our clients 24/7, using a standard browser via the Internet from anywhere in the world. You won’t need to purchase hardware, software, or software enabling devices – a standard browser and Internet access is all any user ever needs.
Avue is explicitly designed for high scalability and performance and a subscription includes unlimited concurrent users – from managers, administrative officers, support staff, recruiters, EEO personnel, background investigators, HR professionals, to employees and applicants. Avue provides all the capacity you need to support all your users and encourages high numbers of concurrent users, especially during key events such as annual performance ratings and surge hiring. Avue maintains over 99% uptime and has never lost data or been below this threshold. The unique combination of our technology and business model enables our solution to be rapidly deployed within organizations and deliver quick and measurable results.
But don't call it a software product or service because...
Avue Digital Services: ADS is neither a software product nor leased access to a software product. Instead, it is an integrated digital service delivery system. ADS provides domain-specific expertise and engineered content to the user, along with business process management and transaction processing. ADS applies the essential business rules of the organization, uniquely, to help it achieve its business goals in a delivery system that includes domain content and expertise, as well as re-engineered processes, as a total package.
To that point, they continue to create additional solutions on their platform, many that can be traced by the press releases that have accompanied them such as...
Time & Attendance and Employee Scheduling Modules
Online Talent Communities for Federal Job Seekers
A Transitions Job Site
I can tell you that they do employ software developers, whatever the classification of the solution.
They employ around 50 or so people in the area and have remained at a pretty steady state for a number of years (I found one source that said 80 people and another that said 50 so I am remaining conservative). They are headquartered here in Tacoma but also have offices in Bremerton and Washington, DC. Additionally they have satellite offices in several other states.
The company was founded by Linda Rix in 83, and she is the Co-Chief Executive Officer along with James Miller, who also has experience in the consulting industry.
No Twitter or Facebook sites to speak of, but they have a pretty complete web site.