Q&A: Insperity

by David Dean Menzies

RALEIGH, N.C. -- As part of CarolinaTechNews' ongoing profiles of businesses, organizations, and people contributing to the innovation economy in North and South Carolina, we spoke with Shannon Cook, SHRM SCP, business performance advisor for Insperity, a leading provider of human resources and business performance solutions for America’s best businesses.

Q: When was your company founded and why?

A: 30 years ago, our CEO Paul Sarvadi envisioned making business owners’ lives easier by taking HR and administrative burdens off their plates. Our mission is to help clients succeed so communities prosper. We help them run better, grow faster, and make more money.


David Menzies | 919-274-6862 Fiction Writer and Public Relations Consultant  | www.daviddeanmenzies.com
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Q: Where is your HQ and how many employees do you have?

A: Our corporate headquarters is in Houston, Texas. We have over 2,000 corporate employees and over 60 offices nation-wide. We support over 100,000 businesses with over 2 million employees.

Q: How did you get involved, what is your background?

A: I am an HR Executive by trade, having been the Director of HR with Showtime Networks under CBS in California and then the HR Director for a professional services company here in Raleigh when my family relocated. I was actually an Insperity prospect. As an HR Professional, I saw Insperity as a lifeline enabling me to reduce the administrative aspects of my job and increasing the opportunity for me to be strategic in my position. I was also drawn to the large company resources I would have access to while still having a direct impact on my employees and organization. I was impressed by the quality Insperity represented and I stayed in touch with them. Later I was hired as part of their local service team for Raleigh clients. I served as the clients’ HR Specialist and then their Client Liaison. Insperity walks the walk in developing their people providing me the opportunity to transition to a corporate team developing training and resources for service providers in the field. I am now back in the field, as a Business Performance Advisor, helping business owners any way I can.

Q: What are your company’s core services?

A: We’ve built our business model around proven strategies that take the administrative burden off of business leaders. By spending less time focusing on HR tasks, such as payroll and managing employee benefits, they are free to spend more time on what matters most – growing their business. We have products that serve a client in any phase of their lifecycle as a business. This ranges from our flagship all-inclusive model, Workforce Optimization to standalone offerings such as: Time & Attendance, Payroll Services, Employment Screening, Retirement Services, Expense Management, Recruiting Services and Financial Services.

Q: Who are your company’s competitors and what are your differentiators? 

A: There are other companies in the Professional Employer Organization (PEO) space, but no others are built and function as we do. We didn’t add HR to our offerings or buy up other smaller PEOs; we started with HR as the core for our business model. As we grew from 2 employees to over 2,000 we built and acquired HR solutions to address our own needs as a Best in Class Company. We then share these solutions and best practices with our clients. As the benefits plan sponsor for our Workforce Optimization clients we provide benefits cost containment that our competitors can’t. As a 2.6 billion dollar publicly traded company we know what it takes to grow a successful company. When we look at those differentiators we are in a class of one.

Q: Does your company develop new technologies or re-apply existing technologies to solve a problem?

A: Our CEO is a visionary and still leading the charge. We are constantly exploring ways we can adapt and develop our services and offerings to better serve our clients. We have an equal focus on the services we deliver as well as our client’s satisfaction. As the complexities of being an employer continue to change we remain flexible as an organization to adapt and address issues such as Health Care Reform.

Q: Who are your customers?

A: Our ideal customer is a business owner who has the mindset of investing in their people. We provide the best return on investment for this type of business owner. Other ideal companies are multi-state employers, those needing to grow quickly, and those who want to attract and retain the best talent in their industry. We can support clients as small as 5 employees and as large as thousands of employees.

Q: What problems does your company solve?

A: We provide cost containment through our economy of scale and vendor consolidation. We help clients mitigate risk by shielding them from government regulations, educating them on best practices, and sharing the liability of being an employer. We enhance a company’s business by allowing them to attract and retain the best talent, through recruiting best practices, performance management support, training and development, and best-in-class benefit offerings. This in turn allows a company to improve their efficiencies and grow their revenue.

Q: How have your services achieved a positive result for clients?

A: For one of our local clients, who we helped grow from 2 employees to over 80, we designed a customized training program for their manager level employees. This ensured a consistent culture and a unified approach in developing their people.

For one of our smaller nonprofit clients, the President needed to lay-off his right-hand person and absorb her role. He was not comfortable with this process so we went on-site to sit with him and provide coaching and then support during the meeting.

For one of our manufacturing clients an employee was injured on the job and it was determined he didn’t follow safety protocol. His workers compensation claim was denied and the case went to litigation. Insperity handled the claim process, and represented our client through litigation and mitigation. This saved our client time and money.

Q: What new services will you be rolling-out in 2016?

A: We are continually looking for partnerships or additional services to adapt to our clients’ growing needs. Currently we are providing the best guidance possible to address the complexity, compliance and cost of Health Care Reform. As community ratings are now applicable to small group plans in North Carolina, our solutions are even more beneficial to North Carolina businesses.

Q: What makes your company relevant to the future of your industry?

A: We were relevant to the creation of the industry and continue to be an influence for the PEO relationship and its adoption within many areas of law and tax regulations.

Q: Will your company be participating in any upcoming trade shows or other events, or are you being featured in any upcoming industry publications?

A: Our local Business Performance Advisors are working with multiple networking groups. We provide guidance and support to businesses in any way we can. Insperity pays us to help companies succeed so communities prosper.

Q: Where can people go to find out more information?

A: I would love to share more and can be reached at Shannon.cook@insperity.com, 919-407-3546, and on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/shannon-cook-shrm-scp-3935b2a
Company website:  http://www.insperity.com/all-solutions/bpa/Shannon.Cook

David Menzies | 919-274-6862 | Writer and Public Relations Consultant  | Editor CarolinaTechNews.com | info@carolinatechnews.com | www.daviddeanmenzies.com