'Harbinger of huge shift;' likely means more local hiring

SANTA ROSA – Metier Ltd., the business software provider that's growing its presence in downtown Santa Rosa, will grow faster in response to acquiring Sears Holdings as an enterprise client.

[caption id="attachment_23892" align="alignleft" width="108" caption="Doug Clark"][/caption]

Metier will help retailer Sears deploy its project portfolio management solutions throughout the 3,900-store operation, said Metier President and CEO Doug Clark.

"The Sears effort is a harbinger of a huge shift in the way business is done," he said. "The new focus is on a project-based model to get new products to market more efficiently."

Project-based operations are continuous, he emphasized, not a disjointed series of short-term spurts of activity to accomplish a goal.

"You look, you execute and you use the data accumulated from each project to fuel the engine for future projects," he said.

The Metier solutions have proven successful in streamlining government agencies, particularly in Washington, D.C., where the company maintains a 50-employee work force.

But a contract with the state of California to make its information technology more efficient and transparent drew the company to open a branch here last year.

"All the company principals are here in Santa Rosa now as are marketing  sales and our virtual service component," said Mr. Clark, now a Sonoma County resident.

Currently "north of 20" employees, Metier has already outgrown its original office near Railroad square and has 11 positions open. The company has its eye on the AT&T building on Third Street in downtown Santa Rosa where a major renovation is planned.

"We've signed an agreement for the entire fifth floor, about 40,000 square feet, if the renovation plans go forward," said Mr. Clark.

Metier (pronounced may-tee-yay) studied several cities in California before choosing Santa Rosa for what the company expects will grow into a 60- to 125-employeee operation.

"Or maybe larger, if our contract with Sears is an indication of both large and small companies seeing the need to bring their IT operations under control," said Mr. Clark.

Metier's clients include the city of Miami, the Federal Aviation Administration and the state of Louisiana as well as private corporations.

According to Zoher Karu, vice president of merchant analytics and decision management of Sears Holdings, the Metier solutions are expected to "provide the processes tools, reports and training to enable our business units to become better businesses – to make better decisions, to more effectively and efficiently execute both within and across business units and to share ideas that drive performance."