Although our team is physically located all across the United States, 729 Solutions loves being based in San Francisco and working with other San Francisco Bay Area companies. I’m a San Francisco Native, and this is my home. I bought a house on the street where I grew up and I can see the Golden Gate Bridge outside of my dining room window. San Francisco has grown and changed a lot over time and we have been fortunate to grow and change with it.
When we first started this company, Randy, Co-Founder and CFO, and I did anything and everything we could to survive. We did phone system installations and wired up office networks, and we installed servers. That was all work we had to do in-person and face-to-face with our local clients. This meant we had really strong relationships with our clients during the first early years of 729. This set the tone for how we wanted our client relationships to function, and how we can best serve and communicate with our clients.
Although most of our current clients are located across the United States (and a few around the globe!), we’re excited to begin working with more Bay Area companies again, such as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (MOMA). This is an amazing opportunity that I don’t think we could’ve won on the phone. The museum employees needed to look us in the eye and feel reassured that we were going to get the work done for them, keep their information safe and secure, and be present if they wanted to work with someone in person… It’s this hand-holding, comfort level, this “small enough to care” concept that makes us so good at working with other San Francisco Bay Area businesses. It says everything about us when we can sit in their offices, and we can talk with them, and we can solve their problem, and we can make them feel comfortable.
We also know we’re dealing with people who are thinking relatively the same way as we do. Not in that “living in a bubble” sense, but that the context and the concepts don’t seem as foreign when we’re talking to someone who is also located in the San Francisco Bay Area. People’s experiences here can be different from other parts of the United States, just by nature of our location and history with technological companies all throughout the Bay Area and Silicon Valley… Travel is hard in this industry. There’s just not enough margin on most of our projects to be sending our employees all over the place. Not only is travel expensive, but you also don’t win all the opportunities you bid for. As a small company, this can be a tough sell from a financial perspective. It has to be a really good-sized project to put one of our staff on an airplane.
As a technology company with employees spread across the world, we will always have a space for working with clients regardless of their location. We have the tools, skills, and knowledge to successfully complete complex (and simple) projects remotely, without ever needing to send someone for a site visit. That being said, we’ll always have a special place in our hearts for our fellow San Francisco Bay Area businesses and are excited about finding more local opportunities and working with clients face-to-face.