Thriving CorTech shows others how to go global
In the tech staffing industry, competitors can help one another grow. CorTech has grown significantly, thanks to client mentoring, and now helps other vendors
CorTech LLC is an Atlanta-based global company that provides strategic full-service staffing solutions and payroll services. It has thrived through its partnerships with larger staffing companies like Kelly, Manpower/Tapfin, Adecco/Beeline, Randstad/Sourceright, Allegis Group, and Yoh. Partnerships with firms that compete for the same business may seem unusual, but it works, according to CEO Vincent Rossy.
“I know it’s hard to fathom within the industry,” Rossy says, “but we think the world of our partners, and they do an awful lot for us.”
CorTech expanded when it acquired the assets of Stafflogix Corporation in May. Stafflogix (Naperville, IL) had several branch offices nationwide. The asset purchase added thirty to forty new Fortune 1000 clients to CorTech’s direct roster, Rossy says.
Former Stafflogix executive Kathy Greco is now senior vice president of strategic initiatives at CorTech. She had been a mentor to Rossy in a former job as supplier diversity head at the Manpower Corporation. Greco’s grooming through Manpower helped CorTech turn what was then a $3 million operation into a $54 million enterprise. “She gave us an opportunity to go from being a local vendor to being a national vendor,” says Rossy. “She also helped us expand into Canada and Puerto Rico.” CorTech has since grown to more than $100 million in revenue.
The fact that Greco was one of two well-regarded business colleagues working at Stafflogix made the idea of taking over the company appealing to Rossy. “Doug Wetzel, who was also at Stafflogix, is a senior executive I’ve worked with for years and have a lot of respect for,” Rossy says.
Creation of CorTech
Rossy and his business partner Gary Nichols started CorTech in 1999. Rossy was an IT specialist, certified in Microsoft, Novell and Cisco systems, while Nichols had recently sold his clerical staffing company. After a random meeting, the pair began talking about combining their expertise to launch a technical staffing firm.
“When we first started, it was strictly IT and telecom,” Rossy says. “As the years went on, we started branching off into different fields: industrial, clerical, clinical, medical.”
In the IT industry, CorTech supplies clients with personnel in software development, project management and business systems design and analysis. The company also offers solutions for client IT projects such as administrative software, Internet security, network engineering, web development and system architecture.
Rossy graduated from Central Connecticut State University (New Britain) with a BS in economics and a minor in business. After he finished his degree he started at insurance company Aetna (Hartford, CT), where he was soon assigned to the IT group. That job gave him on-the-job training in software development, programming and networking.
Mentoring others for a global economy
Rossy is a member of the supplier diversity board at Manpower. He mentors other small businesses that want to expand globally, sharing his own experience of breaking into the Canadian and Puerto Rican markets. “I got into those markets through the school of hard knocks,” Rossy says. “I figured it out by myself. But today those markets are really strong for CorTech.”
Mastering legal compliance issues was the most difficult part of the process, according to Rossy. “It’s not easy, especially if you’re coming from a centralized operation, to maneuver through the system to get the information you need to make sure you can actually do business in those regions,” he says.
Rossy says it helped that both Canada and Puerto Rico have corporate cultures very similar to the U.S. business environment. “The difference is not so much in corporate practices but in local statutes and regulations,” he says.
CorTech has continued its international expansion into the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Germany and Mexico. While those markets currently have very different corporate cultures from those in the United States, Rossy expects the culture gaps to narrow as more businesses like his, and their clients, seek staffing solutions for their increasingly global operations.
Today, CorTech’s workforce consists of about 2,100 temporary employees worldwide and sixty-three internal staff members. Along with its world headquarters in Atlanta, it operates U.S. branch offices in Appleton and Milwaukee, WI, Twinsburg, OH, Schaumburg, IL, Paris, TX, Ogden, UT, New Milford, CT and Tucson, AZ. CorTech will soon open offices in Louisville, KY and Martinsville, VA. Its current clientele includes companies in the telecommunications, electronics, logistics, manufacturing and healthcare industries. The list boasts major brands like Honeywell, Arris-Motorola, UPS, Coca-Cola, Kimberly Clark, Rockwell and other multinational enterprises.
Rossy says staffing is a fast-paced and heavily commoditized business that has evolved in many ways in the fourteen years since he started CorTech, but it’s a business he continues to find rewarding. “It’s extremely competitive, and I really enjoy that aspect of it,” he says. “Creating strategic solutions is definitely a compelling component, as is working with all the people I get to work with on a day-to-day basis, like internal staff members, partners and clients, to accomplish goals.”
CorTech has a strong student hiring program: 80 percent of its new hires are new grads, Rossy reports.
Rossy is Hispanic, and CorTech is a certified MBE. But, Rossy says, it’s important for CorTech to assure clients the company is always focused on quality first. “We’ve tried within our operations not to just throw out the word ‘diversity,’ but to go to our clients and let them know we can actually provide value and compete successfully with majority companies,” Rossy says. “We have a fantastic track record with our partners and direct clients in providing solutions that few other companies, majority or diverse, can offer.”
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