The Least Sexy Forbes Rising Star, Maybe Ever


When I heard that Electric had been nominated to the Forbes “2018 Cloud 100: Rising Stars” list, I had to laugh because my first thought was “Who knew an unsexy IT company would ever get this sort of recognition?” We’ve always been an underdog, told that we couldn’t sell or automate IT, an industry typically considered so behind the scenes and nerdy that we’re often overlooked for these types of nominations.

But if you walk in to the Electric office, you’ll get a completely different idea of what IT is. You'll see our Help Desk solving thousands of IT issues a day, engineering cranking on something exciting for our customers, and last month, you would have celebrated with us as our sales team reached a milestone that most startups never see in their lifetime. Reflecting on the progress our team has made in just two short years is a great reminder of what we’ve accomplished and where we are headed - and just how off base those doubters in the beginning ended up being.

While I know for sure that this recognition is because our company serves an expansive market with enormous needs that we are able to serve like no one else, I also know that achievements like this always come down to our people. IT is almost never pretty and it’s definitely not easy but our team is working together to make it better every day.

So when I consider all those things together, it doesn’t surprise me that we've been recognized alongside our peers. This is a list that historically has included innovative growth companies turned heavy hitters who, like us, are making major strides in their industries at a rapid pace. The “Rising Stars” list is a primer of who you can expect to see making major breakthroughs within the next 24 months.

For example in 2016, Canva and Toast were nominated to the same list that Electric sits on today. Within a year, both companies were upleveled to the Forbes Cloud 100 list because their businesses are revolutionizing their respective industries.

Toast has drastically improved restaurant operations by providing a single platform that unifies disparate restaurant softwares including point of sale devices. Previously, restaurants had difficulty tracking customer information, implementing new revenue streams and were forced to rely on outdated, unsafe POS devices. With Toast, restaurant owners and managers can greatly improve their patron experience and open new revenue streams like integrated online ordering, loyalty, and gift card programs.

Canva has simplified and improved the experience of design software in such an enormous way that it’s been said anyone can become a designer. By implementing simple to use tools like drag and drop and providing access to millions of stock images, fonts and layouts - even a novice can create print or digital design and graphics. Previously, this capability was significantly limited to design software giants like Adobe Design Suite which requires expert knowledge to use.

So, what does Electric have in common with these companies beside the “Rising Stars” list?

Canva fixed graphic design. Toast fixed restaurant operations. And now, Electric is fixing IT support. And sometimes, the greatest opportunities for disruption come from the least cool or sexy industries.

Electric isn’t a swarm of IT people like to “Lozenge” from “The Office” or the SNL character “Nick Burns: Your Company’s IT Guy.” We understand firsthand how it is our job to be cool-headed in a crisis, funny in a pinch and above all fast and effective for our customers. We provide a service unmatched by anyone else in the space because we deliver results quickly, provide proactive and reliable IT support, and total cost transparency to our customers.

And that’s pretty damn cool and sexy to me.

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