Accusoft’s CEO, Jack Berlin, Featured in Invest: Tampa Bay 2019
Capital Investment Associates recently published their latest version of its Invest economic report. June's edition focused on the economic outlook for Tampa. Invest: Tampa Bay is a 156-page economic analysis that reviews Tampa's diverse economy, appeal for healthcare, tech and innovation, and much more. The 2019 report highlights the growth of Tampa's businesses as well as the technological revolution the area is currently experiencing.
In the issue, Invest: Tampa Bay reviews tech and innovation's impact throughout all economic sectors of the community. From residential and commercial development to tourism, arts, culture, and sports, Tampa's growth reportedly "shows no end in sight."
In addition to their own research, Capital Investment Associates reached out to the area's top CEOs and leaders to get some insight on what it's like to live and work in Tampa Bay. Accusoft's Jack Berlin was asked to provide his thoughts.
The Technology Landscape in Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay technology has been top-of-mind for Berlin since he chose to locate his headquarters in Seminole Heights. To get the conversation started, Berlin and friend Seng Sun, owner of SunView Software, came up with the idea for Tampa Bay Tech, a group of CEOs that meet quarterly to raise awareness in and around Tampa's software ecosystem.
"When Seng and I first met, we talked about the whole local software arena and we both lamented the same thing: nobody knows who we are, nobody knows what's going on in software in Tampa Bay. We wondered if other people in Tampa Bay felt the same way we do," says Berlin. "So, we put a group together and wrote down a few rules. One, you must be headquartered here. Two, you must be a member of Tampa Bay Tech. Three, you must have at least 10 W2 local software programmers - because we want real software companies in the area."
Tampa Bay Tech intends to host some events over the next year, and engage others in the community. "I really do think that we have a bigger ecosystem than people know about here. This is a very small group of like-minded CEOs. We can have lunch together, nobody's going to sell to anybody, we can talk about what we want to talk about. So, it's very low key, it's really just building a little bit of an ecosystem around software here," says Berlin.
Passion that Makes a Difference
In addition to his passion for Tampa technology, Berlin insists that Accusoft employees get involved with the community and share a helping hand. Berlin serves as a chair of the parks board in Hillsborough County. "The experience exposed me to the wonderful world of our county park system. It's expansive. As chair of the parks board, I became a member of the ELAP committee, which oversees land acquisition and the protection of these lands. A lot of it has to do with restoration and reclamation. We have over 60,000 acres under protection now as a county, which is incredible," reports Berlin.
Berlin is still on the site selection committee, as well as on the board of the environmental land program. Additionally, he is a member of the Friends of the County Parks and Recreation Inc board, which is a different organization. This charity focuses its efforts around raising money for parks programs that aren't funded through budget.
Accusoft enables its employees to take one paid day a year to go out and get their hands dirty. It even sponsors its own Champion a Charity program, where employees can pick a non-profit each year and Accusoft will match the donation. The company also has a Change Makers Committee that comes up with ideas for volunteerism and hosts different events throughout the year.
A Great Place to Grow
Accusoft is always growing and developing, but it keeps its charm with a small business approach. “Our core values and company culture make us stand out,” he said. “Accusoft fosters a competitive and positive work environment, and we are a place where people want to come to work every day. Even as we've grown into a large organization, we have a small business mindset where we value and support each individual employee.”
He provides this advice to entrepreneurs. “Go with your gut,” he said. “If you have a great idea, a go-getter attitude and a solid team, you will go a long way. I've had to make tough and risky decisions, but each one has excelled Accusoft as a company, and that comes from trusting my intuition and having a strong team behind me. Also, prioritization is key. As an entrepreneur, getting into the habit of deciding what needs to get done from day-to-day can be difficult, but ultimately, it will free up your time so you can focus on what's incredibly important.”
To learn more about Accusoft's interview with Invest: Tampa Bay, check out their economic report here.