Q&A with Dave Hansen, VP and general manager of BMC Software in Tampa
Friday, March 02, 2012
It was announced in the news recently that Numara Software
was bought by BMC Software. This was big news among the Tampa Bay technology community, especially since Numara was headquartered in Tampa. The Byte recently spoke with Dave Hansen, VP and general manager of the BMC Software in Tampa. Hansen, who joined Numara last year as CEO, gave us
insight into what a typical day is like for him, what the sale means for his
organization and the region, and his views on the Tampa Bay tech industry’s current
position and future potential.
You’ve only been in this role of CEO at Numara Software since
August, and there’s been so much that’s happened in the past six months. What
is a typical day like for you?
CRAZY BUSY! As a CEO there are so many aspects of your job
and every day I try to devote time to each function. I of course spend a lot of
time in meetings, but a successful day for me is when I can spend time on both
the internal and external aspects of my job, which is employees and customers,
respectively. I think it is important to get out there and talk with customers
and spend time with them. I also try to spend time with employees. I have an
open-door policy and I try to get out of my office each day and walk the floor
and talk to different employees. I feel building that emotional bond with your
employees is important so you can build trust with them and you know they are
behind you. So I constantly strive to balance the two focuses.
Numara Software is such a shining example of a homegrown Tampa Bay
tech success story. How will the sale of the company to BMC impact your
organization in terms of its ability to retain some of that history?
We have had great success here,
and I see even more success in this next chapter. We were able to draw the
attention of the 8th largest software company, and they have pledged
a commitment to this Tampa location. Tampa will remain the headquarters for
this division and I think we will get more investment from BMC. This was really
a very positive outcome for Numara and for Tampa.
Once the final paperwork for the sale is complete, do you
anticipate big changes in terms of headcount, corporate culture, or product
The deal officially closed on
February 3rd. I definitely anticipate our headcount will increase in
terms of new hires. We already have more people added to our business unit.
They might not physically be here, but they are behind us. I am committed to
keeping our culture the same here. I see us having a small company culture
within a big company. I want to continue our kickball games in the empty fields
near the airport.
As for product offerings, BMC
sells to really large enterprises, and Numara sold to a different market. This
division will continue selling to the same market, but now our product
portfolio has increased because BMC has more product offerings.
Your firm is among several tech companies that have been hiring
here lately. What in your view are the most important skill sets and talent
attributes that are missing from the pool of local candidates for your company?
Where are you going to find the talent you’re having a hard time finding
What we need are good
technologists. I want to see a technology incubator started here and really get
the entrepreneurial spirit rolling. There are great opportunities in building
software for mobile devices and Cloud computing. It is important for the
educational institutions to focus on developing talent for these key and
critical skills. I want to see people
who really understand cloud computing and can develop solutions. When it comes
to us, I see hiring opportunities for development, sales and services delivery
What are some ways educational institutions, economic development
organizations, and state agencies can help ensure that the talent companies
like yours require to fuel your growth is readily available here?
We need to partner with
educational facilities so they understand the skill sets we need graduates to
have in order to sustain us being here. And by that I mean any technology
company that is located here. TBTF was the only economic development
organization that approached me quickly when I came here. They have really
encouraged me to have a voice and get involved with the technology industry here
and tout the benefits of the region. When it comes to fueling growth I really
want to see more investment in women in technology, all the way back to the
college level, but also encouraging the advancement for women already in the
technology field. You know, when you look at a college computer science class,
it is probably 80 percent male, so I think getting to young women earlier and
encouraging them to get in the technology field is vitally important.