Even if you’ve never visited our hometown of Austin, TX, you may have heard of its “keep it weird” reputation and young population.
But Austin has much more to offer to technology-driven entrepreneurs, like the team behind TuffWerx. In fact, we contend that Austin is one of the best places to be in business in the country. We’ve been able to tap into a vast supply of resources that are unique to this city, and our company is developing quickly because of it.
We decided to pen this post so you have some insight into why we’re here and the ways that Austin is working for us. This article is personal testimony to the pro-technology, pro-business elements of Austin and how they can boost a company’s growth (in this case, ours!).
1. Austin Is on the Cutting Edge of Software Development
Austin is overflowing with innovative tech companies and skilled tech experts, from worldwide corporations like Dell to startups like TuffWerx. This large pool of talent and technological savvy is releasing powerful developments in software technology and cloud computing that TuffWerx is able to incorporate into our product development and overall business development.
“Local entrepreneurs are building out powerful tools that we use to make TuffWerx more powerful. Where it makes sense, we leverage these tools,” says Erik Dreyer, Chief Technology Officer for TuffWerx.
The local talent pool is fed by a stream of graduates from Austin’s nine universities, including one of the country’s largest – The University of Texas at Austin. Our tech support options are extensive, whether we’re looking for long-term employees or short-term contractors. There’s even a role for Austin’s university students before they graduate. We’re currently interviewing potential interns, all bright and eager undergraduate students here in Austin.
Graduate of The University of Texas (UT) Law School and Founder/CEO of BuildASign.com, Dan Graham understands the constructive interplay of Austin’s educational and tech communities.
“Having UT here in Austin as a talent and idea source, along with a rapidly developing entrepreneurial community, creates a cycle of innovation across the tech industry,” Dan conveys.
2. Austin’s Pro-Business Culture Feeds Sustainable Growth
Austin has developed extensive programs to support and educate local entrepreneurs. Michele Skelding, VP of Global Technology and Innovation at Austin Chamber of Commerce, goes out of her way to ensure that startups like TuffWerx are supported with exposure and opportunities to connect with the right players.
Arguably one of Austin business’s biggest fans, Michele excitedly reports, “Recently named the #1 Hottest Startup Scene in the U.S., according to a new ranking by GoodApril, as reported by Entrepreneur Magazine, Austin entrepreneurs will be the first to tell you the scene here is extremely collaborative, dynamic and one of the most vibrant startup ecosystems in the country. The potential for entrepreneurship in Austin now is more desirable than I’ve ever seen.”
3. Austin’s Entrepreneur and Tech Communities Are Collaborative
On any given day of the week, TuffWerx team members have the opportunity to attend an extensive list of networking and educational events. There are literally scores of entrepreneur-related, tech and software development Meetups in Austin, focusing on topics from mobile development to specific programming languages. Austin is one of the only cities in the country that offers such a wide range of Meetup opportunities, many of them taught by experienced experts in their industries.
These events and others like them are valuable from an educational standpoint, but they also offer opportunities to collaborate. We’re able to connect with our peers who are working on their own businesses in Austin, benefitting from their experiences and the lessons they’ve learned.
TuffWerx CEO Gary Forni agrees: “TuffWerx is where it is today because of mentoring and advisement from a series of successful CEOs in the areas of SEO, Internet marketplace development, email productivity, and lead generation.”
Erik Dreyer adds, “Because of all the startup and entrepreneurial activity, there are a large number of developers in this city. With that are many Meetups, presentations and open houses that companies hold to evangelize their technology in some way. By participating in these events, I get a broader perspective of what other tech companies are doing. The things I’ve learned have directly benefitted TuffWerx. The technologies I’ve learned about have been incorporated into the TuffWerx platform and have made it even more powerful.”
Austin’s cutting edge technology, pro-business culture and collaborative community allows our company to roll out the most cutting edge innovations in the heavy equipment industry.
Downtown Austin photo via Flickr CC, courtesy of atmtx.