- Last updated:
- 17 Aug 2022
Businesses on the Sunshine Coast are receiving international recognition as they export quality goods, services and skills to global markets. The contribution these businesses provide to local industries has seen an influx of skilled workers and innovation. Retail Express is an example of a Sunshine Coast business that has invested in their talent and service to compete internationally, adding to the calibre of the local tech industry.
Aaron Blackman started Retail Express in 2006 and became one of the first in Australia to pioneer cloud retail operating software that allows businesses to manage their point of sales, inventory, logistics and more, servicing over 5000 retailers and processing more than $50 billion in gross transaction value.
Early this year, the business was acquired by international software company Maropost which offers marketing automation, ecommerce, B2B and HelpDesk software.
“The rapid growth of the business over 16 years has been enabled by our ability to attract world class talent to the Sunshine Coast, while being laser focused on our customer needs. We now have over 350 staff globally and are in the process of setting up our new Australian headquarters in the Maroochydore CBD where we plan to significantly expand our team”.
The expansion of Retail Express (by Maropost) is driving further local recruitment for roles in marketing, engineering, customer service and sales. The focus on attitude over experience in these positions has helped the organisation build a thriving and supportive culture.
Aaron has found that you get from your workforce what you put in. The business has developed a staff culture of mutual respect that has been built on flexibility, career progression and good times. An example is giving staff the ability to anonymously submit feedback and ideas to the senior leadership team. One recent suggestion was ‘Bring your Dog to work Day’ which allows staff to bring their dogs into the office on a rotating roster.
“We’ve put a lot of effort into fostering an amazing culture in our workplace. We offer flexible work arrangements, games area in the office, regular social events; and it really works. Our monthly Town Hall/All Hands meetings gives us a casual setting to chat about the business performance and strategic direction in an open staff feedback forum.
We also give our staff the opportunity to upskill and become further qualified through extra study. I think this is important to help support career ambition and continue stimulating their interests.”
Retail Express has demonstrated how businesses in the region can grow to become a success internationally. Focusing on staff satisfaction and development drives their workforce to develop great products and deliver quality service, all of which supports the local tech industry.
Retail Express has been recognised as a Local Business Champion in a Sunshine Coast Council initiative. The campaign highlights businesses that support local through sourcing local, partnerships and collaborations, local recruitment and more.