By Teddy Nykiel - Reporter, Milwaukee Business Journal
August 16, 2022, 03:39pm CDT
In her new role as the chief operating officer at the Brookfield IT services firm Concurrency Inc.,
Kate Weiland is re-centralizing operations after the company's attempt at a regional model didn't work out.
Along with that, she's focused on developing and retaining talent for the company, which offers Microsoft-focuseddigital transformation services to clients including many companies in Milwaukee and Wisconsin, Weiland said.
Weiland, who was previously Concurrency's chief people officer, grew the firm from around 15 employees in 2012 to about 200 by 2019, according to Weiland and the company's founder and president James Savage.
Just before the pandemic, Concurrency regionalized its operations across Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois, Weilandsaid. It already had employees in those locations but set up offices and management with the aim of having thoseregions run autonomously. One of the goals was to differentiate from competitors by allowing employees to live wherethey worked, she said.
But the change — which coincided with the pandemic-related rise in remote work and a strong job market for techtalent, in particular — led to employees leaving the company, she said.
"We took some dings in morale," Weiland said. "Now, we're rebuilding that."
Today, Weiland estimates Concurrency has around 150 employees. With her promotion this spring, the companyrecentralized its operations out of its Brookfield office, Weiland said. In addition to recruiting and human resources,she's now also in charge of overseeing the company's delivery, sales and operations departments, she said.
Concurrency, which was one of the Milwaukee Business Journal's Best Places to Work in 2019, hires full-time employees who work with the company's clients on a project basis. Weiland and her team look for well-rounded individuals with emotional intelligence in addition to technical skills, she said.
The company doesn't have a specific target for hiring growth but is instead aiming to respond to market demands,Weiland said. Concurrency currently has job postings for roles ranging from cloud architect to associate data scientist.
"We certainly have, I would say, pretty aggressive growth goals," Weiland said. "But we want it to be smart growth,not just fast growth. We really want to make sure that we have an eye on retention and quality and customersatisfaction."
As part of its recruitment and retention strategy, Concurrency offers in-house training and mentorship starting at the high school and college levels, Weiland said. The company gives employees the flexibility to work remotely butWeiland has noticed an increase in candidates inquiring about in-person opportunities, she said.
"They're kind of longing for that connection again," Weiland said.
In addition to its Brookfield headquarters, Concurrency still has an office in Minneapolis, Weiland said. The companyhosts lunches and happy hours in Brookfield twice a week, which entices more employees to work from the office, she said.
As Concurrency has grown its employee count, it has also evolved the type of clients it works with, Weiland said.Increasingly, it provides enterprise-level consulting services for larger companies, she said.