About SmartyStreets

Our Culture



Introduction

Last Updated: March 18, 2013

In a nutshell, we make your bad addresses not bad. And that's good. Really good. Because cleaning addresses is hard. Really hard. In fact, it's what keeps us up at night. We've done all the hard, messy, and nasty work of figuring out how to correctly and accurately interpret an address in all of its variations and provide a nice, clean, verified one back to you. You might say we're the Chuck Norris of address verification. We take the pain, complexity, and uncertainty from the USPS compliance minefield and wrap it up in a nice pretty package. Enjoy.

Mission

We help companies and organizations to comply with laws and policies. We innovate to make verifying addresses fun and easy. We strive for more consistent address data everywhere. We want to make bad addresses relics of the past. We shake up the competition with low prices and unbeatable personal support. We help make the world go 'round.
We are SmartyStreets.



Rituals


Standup / "Daily Calvin"

This is our brief, daily meeting of minds to coordinate the needs for different projects and assignments. Progress reports, numbers, and what snacks are needed from Costco are also important but pithy elements of our Standup. We begin by reading a page or sometimes more from the Complete Calvin & Hobbes box set. There’s nothing like a little Calvin & Hobbes to get your creative juices going!

Weekly Lunch

We like to go out for lunch each Thursday. Instead of having a dedicated eatery, we like to try all sorts of places around town. This is a multi-functional activity: it fills the stomach, advances comradery, and gently pushes us into the realm of culinary adventure.

Waffle Wednesday

Once each month (or sometimes more frequently) we enjoy odorizing the office by making Belgian waffles. We invite the building management and any others whose noses and stomachs lead them into the office. It's a great time to catch up with one another, and who can say no to free, hot waffles?

New Year Kickoff

We hold an annual party after the holiday season has passed to kick off the new year. Two years ago, we went to The Roof and got great tickets for an evening Brian Regan show. Last January, we went to Ruth's Chris in Salt Lake City following a play at the Desert Star Theater in Murray. At dinner, a little misbehavior is expected (or perhaps encouraged). Jeffrey ordered dessert first and Jonathan asked for a Hot Pocket. The staff at Ruth’s Chris was unflappable to the last. We’d go there again.

Summer BBQ

Just when 40 hours per week isn’t enough... this is a summer affair involving spouses and children. Mainly, it's a good excuse to watch all the children play 'dog-pile' on little Johnny. No one needs an excuse for a good barbecue.



Quotes

"It's working, it's working!!" Some fire up their podracer, others, their code (after successfully compiling, of course).

"Works on my machine." The same 6 statements also pertain to cold fusion. Say no more.

"What's that flashing!?" Another Star Wars reference. Whiny Luke can’t quit playing with buttons on the Millennium Falcon. ... drives Han nuts.

"I love the smell of git reset --hard in the morning." Part of Mike’s usual, daily coding routine.

"Things turn out best for the people who make the best out of the way things turn out." "Things" can be substituted for any other more specific noun (except for the Star Wars Holiday Special). This quote originated from Michael’s father, an expert in positive thinking.

"Don't cross the streams." Total protonic reversal.

Neat Companies

  • Stack Exchange
    In one way or another, Stack Exchange sites solve our problems every day.

  • Amazon Web Services
    Their cloud-based services save our bacon. Powerful ideas (like address verification) meet powerful tools on AWS.

  • JetBrains
    ReSharper makes Visual Studio a pleasure to use. PyCharm is wonderful. If we had more Ruby code we would use RubyMine. You get the idea.

  • 37signals
    We like their philosophy on business and workplace strategies.

  • Google
    Do you a remember a world without Google? It should be obvious why Google made the list.

  • FogCreek
    These guys made Trello, which keeps us on task (when we're not on YouTube). We love that it's free.

  • GitHub
    GitHub just rocks. Way to take the Internet by a storm of community-driven version-controlled code and content. The website is hard to beat, too.

  • NetFlix
    Thank you for destroying the traditional video rental model, including late fees, shaking up that industry, making entertainment actually a joy, and for leveraging the cloud.





Everything you never wanted to know about us

SmartyStreets started in 2005 with two guiding principles. First, how could we prevent the issues caused by bad address data spreading through systems like a cancer. And second, there had to be a better way than the methods used by existing players in the market to make this come true.

At the time virtually every other player in the market used their online presence as a simple extension of their sales force. This would mean prospective customers calling a salesman, disclosing details about their company, and then bargaining over the costs of a per-machine license to the software. After completing the sale, the new customer would then receive disks in the mail within 5-10 business days and only be allowed to use the software on a single computer unless they paid for another license. Talk about an antiquated business model. Talk about flashback to 1985. There had to be a better way. We love the 1980s as much as the next guy, but we don't want to live there anymore.

Instead, what if there was a service that could be accessed at any time by everyone in an organization? Why force customers to call during restrictive business hours to haggle over pricing with a salesman? Why not have customers pay only for what they use? Why not measure turnaround time seconds or minutes instead of days or weeks? That's what the Internet is all about. And at SmartyStreets, that's what we're about too.

From our humble beginnings, we designed a system that would be self-managed and always available for our users. Instead of purchasing expensive licenses and waiting for disks to arrive, we provide our service over the web. No more messing with updates and changes to address data. Just pure, always on, always up-to-date address goodness—no matter the time of day or day of year (even at 3:00 a.m. on Christmas Day).

In addition, you can call us and talk to a real person. Someone that can understand what you are trying to accomplish and can help you get there—all without being pushy or trying to make a sale. We're proud of the fact that we're not salesmen. We don't know 101 techniques for closing the big deal. All we care about is helping our customers. If we have to send you to Gimbles because you'd be better serviced there, so be it. Yes, we'd like your business, but if we have to force a solution on you that doesn't meet your needs, then we're not doing our job. For us, that's a very big deal.

Since our launch, we've made some big innovations and changes to drive the competitive landscape, including:

Today, we're processing billions of addresses per year. As we grow and develop around our customers' needs, we hope you'll join us in the fight to help your organization stay connected to your clients and customers by eliminating the costs, headache, and hassle associated bad addresses. Even if you never pay us anything, we're here to help. You can take that to the bank.

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