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IQMS - Executive of the Year

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Company: IQMS, Paso Robles, CA, USA
Company Division/Group: IQMS
Company Description: IQMS offers ERP and MES software for manufacturers to run a comprehensive end-to-end suite for their business, backed by real-time performance and scalability with strict customer and regulatory certification and compliance. With offices across North America, Mexico, Europe and Asia, IQMS keeps manufacturers lean, competitive and profitable in eight languages around the world. Visit
Nomination Category: Management Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Executive of the Year - Computer Software

Nomination Title: IQMS' Gary Nemmers Achieves The Rule of 40

Tell the story about what this nominated executive has achieved since 1 January 2016 (up to 650 words). Describe the impact he or she has had on your organization. Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms.

For IQMS, 2016 could have been a time of chaos and uncertainty. However, with Gary Nemmers as the new CEO and President, IQMS was able to unify under the new leadership.


IQMS’ founder and president, Randy Flamm, retired in Q1 2016.

For many companies, this executive turnover causes months, even years of uncertainty, seen tangibly as decreases in revenue and increases in expenses. However, for Nemmers, he saw 2016 as a year to focus on growth for associates, customers and sales.

THE RULE of 40:

The Rule of 40 states that strong SaaS companies achieve 40% efficient growth with the goal of 20% revenue growth and 20% EBITDA (


Nemmers set his sights on achieving The Rule of 40 by the end of his first year. This gold standard would be a stretch, as the company was achieving roughly 15% growth each year.

THE 3 P’s:

To achieve this goal, Nemmers utilized the 3 P’s of leadership: people, playbook and process.


Nemmers started with his Executive Leadership team, bringing on a CTO and CFO, with all three relocating to California. “This relocation highlighted the commitment we had -- not only to the financials, but to the business as a whole,” says Nemmers. “Now, even the dog was fully committed!”


Next, Nemmers focused on interdepartmental collaboration. “Previously, each department worked in a silo, focusing on their own efforts. My focus was to guide the team toward open, collaborative discussions through monthly Executive Leadership Team Meetings.”

Then, Nemmers focused on training. In 2016, IQMS leveraged training seminars and conferences for management, partnering with TSIA, expanding beyond the internal pool of knowledge.

Realizing that communication starts from the top, Nemmers initiated Staff Mixers and Town Hall Meetings. “Communication was key, as IQMS headcount grew 25% in 2016. With the introduction of ongoing Staff Mixers and Town Halls, we were able to open the lines of communication across departments and all levels of the company while providing corporate status updates.”


Next, Nemmers focused on process improvements.

Another improvement included improving the lead qualification process. In 2016, the sales team focused on a collaborative approach, centering on pre-demonstration preparation while ensuring that the customer’s needs fit IQMS product offering and vice versa. With this new focused approach and creation of Business Development Associates, the win-rate ratio went from <40% in 2015 to +65% in 2016.


Next, Nemmers created a new department, the Customer Success Group, to ensure customers were achieving 100% value. “The Customer Success Group collaborates with current customers to understand their utilization of the software, identifying gaps. Based on their findings, the team works with IQMS Support and Professional Services to provide customer training, knowledge and resources.”


Another department, Product Support, restructured, providing more one-on-one time with management, staff development and growth opportunities. For Product Support, 2016 was the year for “Project World Class,” focusing on creating a World Class Product Support Organization through process improvements and leadership training. In 2016, the team achieved 100% customer satisfaction while improving KPIs.


At the end of 2016, Nemmers’ goal was to achieve The Rule of 40. “Traditionally, during a year of so many changes, you would expect EBITDA to drop while you invest in R&D and internal process improvements. For IQMS to invest heavily in both during a year of transition while still achieving 20% EBITDA and 20% revenue growth truly showcases IQMS’ dedication.”

But is it sustainable? “Based on the results of 2016 and the projections for 2017, IQMS is on track to achieve The Rule of 50 next year!


Through Nemmers’ dedication, commitment and focus, IQMS has been able to achieve The Rule of 40 during a year that had the potential for turmoil and declines. With Nemmers’ focus on people, processes and playbook, IQMS is on track to achieve a new goal: The Rule of 50.

In bullet-list form, briefly summarize up to ten (10) of the chief accomplishments of this nominated executive since the beginning of 2016.

-Transitioned corporate leadership from founder, Randy Flamm, to new CEO, Gary Nemmers
-Initiatives focused on growth for associates, customer experiences and sales
-Created an Executive Leadership Team focused around interdepartmental communication and collaboration
-Focused on “people,” including training and open communication
-Creation of lead qualification process, achieving +65% win rate
-Achieved The Rule of 40 with 20% revenue growth and 20% EBITDA with 25% increased headcount
-20% revenue growth vs industry average of 8%, including 165 new customers and 98% customer retention
-Restructured for customer-focused support, creating a new Customer Success Group and restructuring Product Support
-Implemented an international channel strategy, including Expanded Partner Program, European User Conference and European Customer Advisory Board, benefitting the United States, Canada and Europe
-Achieved an organic growth rate of 75% over the past three years