This time of year is a busy one, particularly as we prepare for the holiday season and end of the year. I would however, like to take a moment to recognize that today, Nov. 22, 2013, is DSS’s 18th birthday. From simple beginnings, to busy toddler years, through a challenging but joyful adolescence, DSS is all grown up.
There have been growing pains, to be sure. For people and businesses alike, the path to adulthood is neither easy nor free from struggle. It’s been an interesting and rewarding experience, watching DSS grow into what it has become today. I’m sure the other folks who have been part of the team since the beginning would agree.
In some ways, the journey has been like parenthood, watching your child grow and become her own person. And yet in many ways, it is also like being that child, the one making mistakes and learning from them, taking risks and earning rewards, falling hard and getting back up, again and again.
So much has changed at DSS over the years.
- On its first day, DSS had eight employees; we currently employ more than one hundred and fifty incredibly talented and valuable people.
- In 1995, our office and staff occupied a 9,600 square foot, three-story building in West Lawn, with plenty of room to spare. Today, in addition to our main, 40,000 square foot office at One Meridian Blvd, we have a location in West Chester, data centers in Reading and Allentown, and a satellite office in Maine.
- Back in the day, some would argue that we were detrimentally deprived of an adequate caffeine supply, as we housed an archaic drip coffee machine in the conference room. In the spirit of the upcoming holiday, let us all be thankful for Keurig.
Now don’t get the impression that DSS alone has undergone substantial changes over the last eighteen years. The world, and in particularly, the world of technology has seen changes that the tech experts of the mid-nineties could not have conceived in their wildest and most ambitious dreams.
In its lifespan, DSS has seen the evolution of the internet. In fact, for those of you who heard the recent news that “selfie” – a word for self-portrait that did not exist in 1995 – is the Oxford Word of the Year, you may be interested to know that “world wide web” held this honor back in 1995. It shared the distinction with “newt,” which referred to the then newly-crowned Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich.
As DSS rolled through its toddler years, the tech industry welcomed a prominent addition: in the fall of 1998 Google was born, just before DSS’s third birthday. Our “tween” years saw the birth and rise of social media, beginning with Facebook in 2004, and followed shortly thereafter by YouTube, and Twitter.
It would be impossible to list all of the changes and advances in our field over even the past five to ten years (by the time we made the list, it would need an update). Who knows what exciting new opportunities the next five, ten or eighteen years will bring.
But there is one thing that has remained a constant at DSS. Though the faces change, our strength as a company improves because of our greatest asset: our people. The DSS team is what makes this company so special. We are fortunate to have the dedication of the thirty-eight employees who have been with us for more than ten years. We are excited to have the fresh perspective and creativity that our newer team members offer. We are grateful for the hard work, commitment and outstanding service that every one of them provides to our customers. For this, we are most thankful.