Margie Brickner, president and CEO of Reliant Capital Solutions LLC, is a 2018 Columbus Smart 50 honoree
Reliant Capital Solutions LLC has doubled over the past year, both in employee headcount and revenue.
“We have a large federal contract, so that has been a driver, but the core business is also growing very well now. And we’re clicking on all cylinders,” says President and CEO Margie Brickner, who started the accounts receivable management company in 2007.
She doesn’t expect the growth to slow, either. Brickner added employees to her call center in Buffalo, New York, and is looking at add another location in Central Ohio.
“We are out of space in the building that we have only occupied for one year,” she says.
Brickner expects to have 400 employees by the end of the first quarter.
Culture is critical
When Brickner, who had 25 years’ experience in the debt recovery industry, opened Reliant, she wanted to deliver unparalleled customer service. But she’s found employee retention to be equally significant.
“We are extremely committed to ensuring that the culture here at Reliant is one that keeps people happy and coming to work every day,” she says.
To compete with Alliance Data, Discover or Amazon, Brickner needs to be employee focused. Money is one thing, but monthly contests or food trucks in the parking lot are also important. “I feel like we really strike the balance here,” she says.
Brickner has discovered seeing people happy at work is satisfying to her personally. Plus, collecting has a high turnover as an industry, because hardly anyone the employees contact wants to hear from them.
“I did the job for eight years, way back when,” Brickner says. “So, I have, I think, an extra sensitivity to the challenges of that job. We do everything we can to keep the atmosphere positive — even our artwork is bright and cheery. We definitely make that extra effort to keep people upbeat.”
With so many new employees, keeping that culture will be critical going forward. So, Brickner is layering in management and adding to human resources.
She does monthly MVP lunches with employees who are nominated by their peers, and every time, she hears Reliant’s culture is so much different and more positive than other call centers.
“It really does have a family atmosphere. They hear that in training, and they hear that in the recruiting process, but it takes them a while to figure out that we are indeed being sincere,” she says.
Brickner doesn’t want to lose that.