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BostonTrek 2002: An Interview with eDocs CEO Kevin Laracey

I want to dispel a rumor that I keep hearing-namely, that there are no jobs out there. This is the first in a series of profiles of thriving Boston-area technology companies that are participating in BostonTrek this year-what they do, how they do it, and how they are continuing to grow despite the economic downturn.

Natick-based eDocs was founded in 1997, and was funded in 1998 by a stable of blue chip venture capitalists, including Charles River Ventures, Goldman Sachs, GE Equity and Amerindo. Their current customer list includes heavyweights like American Express, GE, Sprint, Fannie Mae and AT&T Wireless. They have participated in BostonTrek for the last three years. Recently, I spoke with co-founder and CEO Kevin Laracey about eDocs, BostonTrek, and the current job environment.

JH: What does eDocs do?
KL: eDocs makes software that lets people manage their account information online. One way to think about it is that we have CRM (Customer Relationship Management) capabilities with a real ROI. The result is service that is faster and more convenient for the end customer, while being cheaper for the biller, saving up to $15 for a call to the call center, and $1 per mailing.

JH: You have participated in BostonTrek for a few years now-what do you get out of it?

KL: We have found that BostonTrek is an easy way to meet good people. We already have several HBS people in-house, and are looking for more. We have found that in comparison with other business schools, HBS grads have a better understanding of the early-stage company experience, perhaps because of the close ties between HBS and the venture capital community.

JH: What is the outlook for employment for new HBS MBAs, in your opinion?

KL: We view the economic downturn as an opportunity to add good people. When the economy was booming, it was a little harder to find the right people.

JH: What will a new MBA do at eDocs?

KL: Immediate opportunities include working with the marketing department to research applications of our products to new industries, or to help manage critical customer accounts. In the longer run, though, there are opportunities to run a significant chunk of the company as it gets larger.

JH: How would you characterize working for a smaller company?

KL: We offer the chance to look at many different functional areas, rather than pigeonholing new hires. That way, you will have a chance to look around and find out what’s best for you.

JH: What would you say to someone who thought there were no opportunities with new companies?

KL: I would say that they obviously haven’t been on BostonTrek, and they certainly haven’t been out to see eDocs!

BostonTrek is happening this February 27th through March 2nd, and features visits by small groups of HBS students to local high-tech companies. BostonTrek is brought to you by the High Tech & New Media Club and MBA Career Services. For more information on the Trek, a partial listing of participating companies, or to sign up to participate, please go to: www.htnmclub.com/event.asp?EVENT_ID=25

January 28, 2002
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