zWORKS programmer turns hobby into career
It’s a tale as old as time. Or should I say, a tale as old as the late 1900s.
There’s three integral parts to this tale. First is an ‘80s kid. Second is a computer in some basement somewhere in America. Third, mix the first two together and – shazam – it’s a future tech genius in the making.
One zWORKS member’s story started like so. Matt Metcalf is the co-founder of PerfectFit Software Solutions and his tale is currently in the software startup chapter.
“I grew up with computers in the house and I was fascinated with them,” he said.
Metcalf started to learn programming at nine years old and treated it like a hobby.
“I like to joke and say I became a programmer because I was incredibly lazy,” Metcalf said. “I didn’t want to do the work myself, I wanted to make the computer do it.”
And so, make the computers work he did. A college mentor told him he should make programming a profession. He got a job in the field and he never looked back.
“It’s something I love doing,” he said. “If I wasn’t doing it for my career, I’d still be doing it as a hobby.”
Metcalf and fellow co-founder, Eric Tinsley, met at the previous company they both worked at and decided to start PerfectFit Software Solutions.
They focus on industry-specific niche software products, Metcalf said. For example, a presentation management system for pharmaceutical marketing programs.
Most of the apps they worked on previously were in the pharma-healthcare realm and they want to branch out from that.
“What we want are things that are perfect fits for that industry,” he said. “Something that’s not designed to be an all-purpose solution that everyone will use.”
They do a mix of building software and consulting but he said they wanted to focus on the software.
“I have a technical background and an MBA – I wanted to understand how to take technology and turn it into a business,” Metcalf added. “Our goal is to be able to do that for ourselves.”
His favorite part about the job is the variety.
“I get to do a lot of different things. In my last role, I spent most of my time in meetings.”
Metcalf grew up in Evansville and lived in Indianapolis for a few years for his first startup then moved back in 2011 to get his MBA. He said he loves the Indy tech community and watching it change.
“It’s an interesting perspective when you get to see it evolve,” he said. “You don’t get into this field unless you love learning new things and not only seeing things change but making things change.”
Getting to know Matt…
- As part of his MBA, he went to China for a consulting trip. Sites included the Great Wall and Tiananmen Square.
- Matt started programming on “ancient, ancient hardware” – a Texas Instruments 99/4A.