Derek Sidebottom – Founder, President at Squadley by Farside HR


Day 2/ Thursday, May 11 at 1:00 PM
Your Squad – Building Your Team to Scale From The First Hire
Day 2/ Thursday, May 11 at 1:40 PM
How Did You Build Your Dream Team?

“Anyone can copy your business model, it’s harder to copy the people who know how to do it well.”

Why are you so passionate about changing the face of HR?
I’ve had a lot of experience in the tech industry and with fast growth startups, and I’ve been lucky enough to be a part of a few big success stories. When it comes to HR software solutions, I’ve tried the “build my own” toolset, I’ve tried “off the shelf” products, I’ve done both approaches. Not once have I been really happy with the HR systems that are out there for this ecosystem. Part of the ongoing evolution of any profession comes with improved tools so that we can do our jobs better. In this hyper growth startup environment HR doesn’t get big budgets and unlimited resources. My job as the CHRO is to help these startup and small organizations be better, faster and stronger. That’s difficult to do with solutions built for larger enterprises that employ fragmented and piecemeal design. So, at this point I’m frustrated enough that I’ve decided to go build it myself.

What is so different about Farside from all the other tools?
A lot of solutions do a fantastic job of one HR function. We are going to do a better job of providing a larger software toolset, catered to the startup market. If we stick with the tool metaphor, how often do you ever need anything beyond a classic black and decker tool set? Rarely. But you need that whole set to get the whole job done. And I want that set to work better together. Wouldn’t it be great if I could use the same battery with each of my tools?

Biggest pain point?
From my perspective, it’s a time issue. To get everything I need, I have to contend with multiple solutions, multiple salespeople, and multiple contracts. I lose so much valuable time negotiating contracts and evaluating solutions. Speed really matters in fast growth innovative startups. We don’t have six months to figure this out, we need it yesterday.

Typical workday?
First, I have a kickass team. The group we’ve assembled are people we have known or admired for some time. Through some strange series of coincidences and circumstances they were all available. I spend most of my time translating my background and experience in the startup world into product specs and representing the voice of our customer. While at the same time still working with customers directly.

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