This article was featured in Atlanta Business Chronicle’s “Meet the C-Suite,” where each week they will feature one of the city’s most high profile c-level executives.
This week meet Eric D. Anderson, chief operating officer of Atlanta-based Clearwave Corp.
Name: Eric D. Anderson
Company: Clearwave Corp.
Background: Undergraduate degree in Accounting from Shepherd University. MBA from VA Tech. While pursuing my MBA, I worked as a consultant for the Small Business Administration in Roanoke VA and fell in love with consulting and working with business owners. After graduating from VA Tech, I joined Ernst & Young as a management consultant. I spent 5 years as a consultant and then joined a Fortune 500 company as the Director for E-Business Strategy, which is the job that brought me to Atlanta. In 2001, My wife and I decided to start our own consulting company, Bluemont Associates. For the next 8 years, I provided business process and technology consulting services for Fortune 500 companies. The projects were large and global in nature requiring non-stop travel to Asia, Europe and across the US. During those years, I was on the road 50 weeks out of the year. In 2010, my friend, Gerard White, CEO of Clearwave, offered me an opportunity to join the company he founded, Clearwave Corporation. Having spent so much time consulting with companies on how to use technology to improve their business, it was exciting to have the chance to join a software company creating technology solutions that streamline registration processes in healthcare. I’m having more fun now than ever. We bring much needed solutions to hospitals and clinics and it is extremely rewarding to see the process transformation our solution enables for our customers.
First job: I grew up on a farm in the Shenandoah Valley in Bluemont, Va. It was
primarily a beef cattle farm, but we also raised pigs, had chickens, horses and harvested our own crops. From an early age, I always wanted to run my own business. My first business was raising and selling ducks at 5 years old. It was quite a lucrative venture; however, it was not until many, many years later that I realized the reason I made so much money is that I had no expenses. My father purchased all the feed, paid for the materials to build the pens and did all my marketing. All I had to do was feed the ducks and collect the money from the customers my father brought to our farm. Ah, the good old days. I wish Dad would come on down to Atlanta and do the same for me now!
Education: Bachelor of Science, Shepherd University. Master of Business Administration, VA Tech
Residence: Peachtree Corners, Ga.
How’s business: We are growing rapidly, over 50 percent per year. It is an exciting time in healthcare, we are witnessing the adoption of the same type of self-service technologies in healthcare that have been adopted in many other industries. When hospitals and clinics use our solution, lines at the front desk disappear, paper is eliminated and information is gathered electronically and automatically updated in back end systems. Patients love the convenience, physicians love having accurate information and reduced costs. These benefits fuel our growth.
Biggest challenge for your business: Getting the word out about our product. As a small company based in Atlanta that serves a nationwide customer base, we work hard to raise awareness in the marketplace about our solution. 90% of the time you walk into a hospital or clinic, you are checking in the same way your grandfather did – using a pen and a piece of paper. Everyone knows that a lot of money has been spent on technology only to later realize the technology purchased fails to deliver on what was promised in the sales cycle. This leads to our second challenge: convincing our customers that we deliver on our promises. Integrity guides everything we do at Clearwave. If we tell a customer we can do something, not only can we do it, but we have done it many, many times before. That said, customers have been burned in the past and are understandably skeptical. Therefore, our reputation is of primary importance and we work hard to ensure our customers are satisfied. Word of mouth is our #1 sales person. Physicians and hospitals put tremendous value on what they hear from other physicians and hospitals.
What’s going to change at your company in the next year: We are adding many new and exciting features to our self-service registration product. Last year, we launched our mobile pre- check allowing patients to have the same experience at their doctor that they have with their airline, specifically, they can check-in from home. This year, we are adding new features to the mobile pre-check allowing patients to use their phones to upload photos of insurance cards, prescriptions, take a selfie and upload other documents. We are constantly improving and upgrading our solution, we do software releases every 2 weeks and all our customers are on the same version of our product. We will also be focused on new marketing initiatives to raise awareness of our product and will continue our rapid growth.