Local business owner Thom Baker seeks to leave Columbia a gift when he retires. Tucked away in his equipment-lain home office, Thom Baker of...
Why did you choose the name 43Tc? 43Tc is the symbol for technetium on the chemistry periodic table. The company started as Technetium Consulting, as it included technical and networking in the name. However, the name proved to be difficult to spell, so 43Tc became the official name early on.
What is the single most innovative thing about 43Tc? 43Tc has run our day-to-day operations including HR, accounting,
marketing, engineering and sales from public cloud offerings for more than five years. This has allowed me to run a business with employees who are thousands of miles away from one another without any loss of operations or sales.
My employees and I can open any computer from anywhere with Internet access and start to work. My Seattle-based customers often call me on the phone
and ask if I could run over for an impromptu meeting, which is when they learn I don’t live in town.
How do you keep up with ever-changing compliance and technology standards? I could say I memorize all of the regulatory and compliance standards, but that wouldn’t be true. It’s simple: I don’t do all the work. No one or one company can do this alone. I only hire people who have a background working across industries. I also partner with companies that specialize in identifying, mitigating and automating compliance risks for my customers. Oh, and there is quite a bit of reading, watching webinars, communicating with experts and trying out different technologies to find the best fit for different industries.
What technology issue do you think businesses should be more concerned about? Poor investments in technology should be the biggest concern for all businesses. Today, all companies from startups to established businesses should evaluate cloud computing because it lowers costs, enables work from anywhere, improves current reliability and grows with the business.
What technology issue do you think individuals should be more concerned about? Personal identity information and persona tracking is one that always worries me. Although I utilize tons of technology, I always think about what I’m paying for that technology. Does the cost match the automation being provided? And what I am sharing with that company? I’m not going to point fingers or name names, but think about the last time you read that long license agreement or usage agreement for technology you use. Typically, free means they can collect information about you and use or sell it, and your clicking “I agree,” you just gave them permission.
How can ineffective technology affect businesses? The two primary things I see are loss of productivity/revenue and disgruntled employees. How many times have you called or visited a business and heard the following? “Sorry this is taking so long; my computer isn’t working properly.” They are losing revenue, turning away customers, and the employee is not very happy. Simple additions, such as increasing Internet speed or adding a second monitor, can dramatically increase employee satisfaction and improve the bottom line.
With locations in Chicago and Seattle, why did you choose to headquarter your business in Columbia? Really, it was about family. We moved here because I have a daughter on the autism spectrum and wanted to provide her with the best opportunities. It turns out Columbia has some of the best services for those on the autism spectrum. The fact that my wife attended Hickman and the University of Missouri and that her mother lives in town were fairly influential as well. When we first moved here, all of my business wasn’t in Columbia, but when I realized this was where I wanted to live, we made the decision to move our business headquarters from Seattle and start working with customers in Columbia and the surrounding area.