Have you ever dreamed about living on a boat? What about working from a boat? This is reality for Launch Workplaces member Karen Riordan, Vice President and partner of SSI Consulting, a 30 year old ERP and accounting software consulting company. Karen’s home and sometimes office when she is not at Launch Workplaces in Tysons or Edgewater is a 50 foot boat in Kent Narrows, MD or on the Intercoastal Waterway.
Karen and her team implement, coach, train and support a variety of accounting solutions for mid-market companies that are ready to expand beyond QuickBooks. “We are certified in a variety of products and we recommend what’s best for our clients,” explains Karen. Popular products they recommend are Dynamics GP and SL, Intacct, Unanet and Dynamics 365. SSI’s mission is to be a partner for their clients, create raving fans and provide outstanding services.
Karen joined the firm in 2008. As Vice President, she is responsible for business development and sales. She has direct responsibility for the Intacct practice, which is a powerful cloud-based accounting solution that saves clients’ money because they don’t have to purchase software or computer hardware, or engage in the services of an IT person to manage the hardware. “More and more businesses are moving to the cloud,” says Karen. Clients look for a new ERP system like Intacct when they have a change in staff or there has been a change in compliance regulations. It’s a perfect solution to demonstrate from wherever her boat is anchored and people are always amazed to see the view outside her office on the water.
What she likes most about her job is the ability to work with a lot of different industries while appeasing her interest in technology. Prior to working in accounting, Karen started a networking support company which was acquired by large CPA/Consulting firm. Over the years she has learned the importance of taking care of customers because as she says, “it costs more to find new ones than to nurture the ones you already have.” Indeed, referrals are a big reason for SSI’s growth.
When this sailor is not on the water, she likes the firmer ground of a golf course. She is a member of The Golf Club at South River, a sister property of Launch Workplaces. Working at Launch Workplaces has made her work more convenient with multiple locations and ease of reserving space. Karen added most importantly “It’s a great community!”