IT consultant connects business, technology

January 26, 2009

Company name: Strategic Data Management

Type of business: data management consulting

Address: 14074 Trade Center Drive, Fishers

Phone: 219-0428

E-mail: info@sdmindy.com

Web site: www.sdmindy.com

Founded: Dec. 7, 2007

Owner: Jim Jordan

Owner's background: Jordan, 44, worked full time while attending Purdue University, from which he graduated in 1994 with a degree in computer science. He then worked as chief information officer of Indianapolis-based Healthx and other small companies and founded Business TechNet, which provides a place for Indiana technology specialists and business leaders to discuss efficiency.

Why started business: Jordan said information technology departments and businesspeople often have trouble communicating, a gap he believes he bridged at Healthx. "I saw a huge void in the communications between IT and business and the priorities between IT and business," Jordan said.

Jordan found he often worked himself out of a job, so he wanted to use his talents to market a tangible product that could be sold to many companies. He developed Strategic Data Management, a consulting firm that sells suites of software and hardware designed to handle the flow of information throughout a company from the time it's produced to when the data is archived to make sure information gets to the right people at the right time.

Competitive advantage: Strategic Data Management doesn't have a unique philosophy, but the consulting and access to Jordan's experience is what makes SDM stand out.

Companies can often be talked into technology products they don't need, which is why consulting is important, Jordan said. Instead of saving money by purchasing the right software, they waste money on a product that won't work with their business in the right ways.

When a business becomes a client, SDM employees work to decide what software would work best for the client's business, then continue the relationship through the installation process and afterward to teach the client how to best use what it purchased, Jordan said.

Jordan is also developing a service called "Virtual CIO," in which he, other technology specialists, and hand-picked software would perform the function of a chief information officer for small companies.

Startup cost: $50,000

Funding source: self-funded

Projected first-year revenue: $250,000

Potential problem and contingency plan: The natural reaction for people in a recession is to "hunker down," Jordan said. "People try to maintain what they have." But Jordan said hard economic times are the perfect time to start questioning efficiency and making changes. He believes his clients will refer other business owners to Strategic Data Management if SDM saves them money.

One-year goal: To establish relationships with more vendors-now he partners with Xiotech, a Minnesota dataprotection company, and Double-Take Software, based in Massachusetts.

Five-year vision: At Healthx, Jordan found he enjoyed creating software, which is something he would like to do for his new company. Eventually, he would like to sell his own software and hardware. He also wants to develop a second generation of products and services with input from clients, to bring original clients back to Strategic Data Management when they decide to upgrade.

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