Fresh off a move into new Henrico headquarters, a local tech firm announced plans to double its employee headcount in the next several years – and it could earn state incentives for doing so.
RTS Labs, which produces custom software for clients such as Dominion Energy and the VMFA, recently moved into an 11,000-square-foot office at 4951 Lake Brook Drive in Innsbrook.
The move gives it room to grow. The 80-person company struck a deal with the governor’s office for incentives to help fuel its goal of hiring 90 additional employees in the next two to five years.
RTS is eligible to receive up to $800 for each new hire – with a ceiling of $72,000 – as part of its expansion plan.
The incentives will come through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program, which provides funding to growing companies to offset the costs of recruitment and training new employees.
The VJIP grant is performance-based, meaning the company receives the funding once the employee has been on the payroll for 90 days.
Jyot Singh founded RTS, short for Rising Tide Solutions, in 2010. The company specializes in software development, data analytics and salesforce implementation.
Felicia Ainsa, business manager at Henrico EDA, learned about RTS after the company decided in early 2018 to find a larger office than the 5,000 square feet it filled at 4701 Cox Road, also in Innsbrook. RTS submitted an application to VJIP in July and moved into its new headquarters in August.
“They are future-facing. I love their innovation and diversity,” Ainsa said of RTS Labs. “The work culture they have there is exactly what I like to see for Henrico. It’s very impressive.”
Designed by locally based SMBW Architects, RTS’ new space boasts an open floor plan with rows of both standing and sitting desks. There are communal gathering spaces, conference rooms, a kitchen and semisecluded seating nooks where employees can meet and collaborate.
RTS spokeswoman Jane Holmes said employees come from a range of backgrounds, not necessarily in tech. Some employees had previous careers before realizing their love of coding.
“Maybe you didn’t go to school for a computer science degree, but you’re super interested in it and are self-taught,” Holmes said.
For example, a recent RTS hire is a former bartender now doing well as a front-end developer.
“We have a lot of people who maybe wouldn’t have been able to get into larger organizations because they didn’t have the particular background, but they can here,” Holmes said. “They can come in here, prove themselves and grow with the company.”
The company also has a relationship with the University of Richmond’s coding program. Holmes said RTS has offered feedback on student presentations in the program. Also, recent UR graduates have applied for jobs at RTS.