News

Bridge360 Celebrates their TWENTY-YEAR Anniversary

October 25, 2021

U.S. Department of Labor - HIRE Vets Gold Medallion

AUSTIN – Twenty years ago, Bridge360 began with their original name of Austin Test, Inc. The name change to d/b/a Bridge360 is the result of the rapid growth with enterprise companies moving into global markets. "I felt the name was limiting since we were already working with companies like AMD, Applied Sciences and Dell who were focused on their global business and growth in Europe and China." says Brenda Hall, Founder and CEO.

Bridge360 began with the vision of being a company with the same attributes of IBM where the focus was on the employees and the clients performing extraordinary software services over a period of many years. "When I started this company, I always planned to be here for the long haul. This ran counter to the common practices at the time, which was to build companies to quickly sell them." said Hall. "IBM taught me a lot about the value of people, teamwork and focus on results. Those years when I worked on the Apollo program at Cape Canaveral for IBM with NASA contractors like Boeing, Grumman and many others gave me the confidence to build Bridge360. If we can put a man on the moon, we can do anything! I believe software can do anything!" says Hall.

Starting out in a storage shed in Austin, Texas Hall has launched one of the largest woman-owned software specialty companies in Texas. The initial software services included internationalizing client software and localizing it to be embraced across the globe.

Asked about the changes the company has experienced over twenty years, Hall said "Technologies have always been the most interesting part of our work because they are always changing. Our expertise has evolved as platforms, tools and applications have changed. You have to embrace those changes and always be building a team of experts who continually learn and deliver solutions." continued Hall. Although technically defined and certified as a Women-Owned Small Business, Hall added, "We never saw ourselves as small but rather mighty."

Since its founding in 2001, Bridge360 has provided superior software services in custom development, quality assurance, systems and platform upgrades and much more on client wish lists. "Our teams have helped our clients enter global markets, establish strong revenues and growth, build better customer delivery systems and ensure financial transactions are accurate and complete. What I’m most proud of is the tremendous satisfaction my employees and the clients they serve are with the results." adds Hall. "Our team arrives with the goal to get the job done on time and done well. We’ve brought our clients’ visions to life. Often, we’ve been asked to rescue projects underway whether local, national or global. In fact, Bridge360 has supported some of the largest and well-known companies in the world." adds Hall. Their global reach has included the United Kingdom, China, Germany, Canada and coast-to-coast in the United States.

So, what does Hall say about the future of their company? "My vision remains the same since we began, however, I am very excited about the new emphasis on space exploration. I can’t help but be passionate about rockets and all yet to be discovered and learned. There’s so much more out there and Bridge360 is ready to blast off and support companies building the solutions that explore the universe. Now, that’s an exciting challenge for the next twenty years!"

About Bridge360

Bridge360 is 100% women-owned and headquartered in Austin, TX with offices on three continents including Asia and Europe. Acclaim includes listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and repeatedly on the Austin Business Journal’s Top Software Firms and Top Women-Owned Business lists. Bridge360 was also the recipient of the International Service Award presented by GlobalAustin and the Austin Chamber of Commerce.


20 Years Old and Still Rising

JUNE 25-JULY 1, 2021

U.S. Department of Labor - HIRE Vets Gold Medallion

What is the primary mission of your company? Bridge360 fulfills the software "wish list" requested by our clients. Often our clients are looking for product solutions with the best software performance possible. We align with their vision for market launch and get the job done. We accelerate their timelines where possible and provide essential hands-on expertise to meet the goal. We measure our success by their success.

What sets your business apart from your competitors? Our teams are subject matter experts who are always honing their ever-evolving IT technologies and trends expertise. The projects we support may take months or years to complete, as the products our clients sell are bleeding edge in their space. We have been sent to represent our clients at their supplier meetings, corporate budget and board meetings and industry events. Our teams have earned the respect of stakeholders at all levels.

As a Texas Certified Woman-Owned Business, we offer our clients unique benefits for their corporate resourcingcommitments. We appreciate the value and benefits provided by a small business and are proud to be among the highly ranked businesses listed in the Austin Business Journal, year after year! Our business model works because we combine a big business structured approach with an intimate client experience. Our clients work directly with me, the CEO, and I bring decades of corporate experience to the table. We benefit from my early days on the launch pad at the Kennedy Space Center to my decades of work at IBM, to my leadership roles at Austin technology companies, civic programs and with The University of Texas. I’ve always thought of Bridge360 as a contributing "citizen of the planet" and enjoy working with global clients such that we launched our presence in China and the UK.

What if anything, has changed since your business was founded? One of the biggest updates is our commitment to Veterans. In 2015, we designed and launched the nonprofit Veterans4Quality. We saw the staffing challenges coming early on and it coincided with the return of our active-duty Veterans. We created an intensive three-month program to teach them how to test software. Today, more than 100 Veterans have completed our program and launched careers in IT. And we’re still at it. Our next class will be later this year.

Describe the defining moment you knew your business would be successful? It obviously takes belief and passion to start a business. Honestly, I never doubted we would be successful with our vision to deliver excellence in software services. I started this company just after 9/11. After a tragedy, unheard of on that scale, I felt it was essential to stand up and contribute to our recovery. I feel that same way now.

What are your plans for the future? We plan to keep growing. Software is in everything, so customization and testing are essential steps regardless of the product. We’re adding security testing to all of our client testing suites. And we’ve pledged to keep teaching Veterans and help them gain employment. Austin is a hot job market so we expect some pressure on the hiring front. That said, we will keep our same standard of excellence in place and continue to evaluate our performance by the difference we make for our clients.

We’re thrilled to be celebrating our twentieth year in business. And we’re excited to see what changes and challenges lie ahead. We’re ready! Thank you Austin and Thank You World!


The Austin Business Journal Awards Bridge360 as a Top Women-Owned Business

September 10, 2021

U.S. Department of Labor - HIRE Vets Gold Medallion

AUSTIN – Bridge360 continues their proud annual tradition of earning a position as a top Women-Owned Business by the Austin Business Journal. Brenda Hall, CEO celebrated the achievement saying "This is especially rewarding given the unique year we all faced." As in prior years, Bridge360 earned both the Top Women Owned Businesses AND the Top Software Firms lists. "We believe that to achieve our goals, the work we perform for our clients must be exceeding their goals. Our mission has always been to strengthen our client’s business and enhance their customer’s satisfaction." Bridge360’s client base extends from global enterprise companies to privately held small business, operating across many different business sectors.

Since its founding in 2001, Bridge360 has provided superior software services in custom software development, quality assurance, systems upgrades and project rescue. "Our teams have helped localize and translate software to work anywhere in the world. We have helped U.S. clients go global and enhanced their supply chains and payment systems. Work we’ve delivered has expanded our clients’ customer base, improved their bottom lines and strengthened their own customer relationships. What I’m most proud of is the tremendous satisfaction our clients have in the work we provide and the pride our team has in delivering this essential work." adds Hall.

About Bridge360

Bridge360 is 100% women-owned and headquartered in Austin, TX with offices on three continents including Asia and Europe. Acclaim includes listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and repeatedly on the Austin Business Journal’s Top Software Firms and Top Women-Owned Business lists.


Bridge360 earns honor from U.S. Department of Labor

November 10, 2020

U.S. Department of Labor - HIRE Vets Gold Medallion

AUSTIN – Bridge360 has been awarded the prestigious HIRE Vets Gold Medallion from the U.S. Department of Labor for their exemplary efforts in recruiting, employing and retaining our nation’s veterans. "Training and hiring our Veterans has been a cornerstone of our mission" said Brenda Hall, CEO. "Our entire company celebrates this great achievement and the recognition this award brings to our commitment to U.S. Veterans" continues Hall.

Since 2014, Bridge360 has focused on meeting the needs of U.S. Veterans entering the workforce. They designed the groundbreaking Veterans4Quality program which was successfully launched as a standalone nonprofit in 2015. This program has taught more than 100 Veterans how to test software with hands-on training and job placement assistance. Companies across Austin Texas have hired their graduates and continue to support the program with industry expert instructors, mentors and jobs.

Whole Foods Market was the first company that joined Bridge360 in the mission to train and hire veterans. Brad Power, their Digital and eCommerce Leader said "What an awesome acknowledgement for you all and I know how much all the veterans appreciate what you have done to help them grow their careers". Ron MacKay, Executive Director of Veterans4Quality thanked Brenda saying "FANTASTIC news! Grateful to all involved, going all the way back to when the idea started. Thank you for that first meeting, and for your tireless support of helping Veterans find their Next Big Thing!" To date, more than 25 area companies have benefitted from hiring a graduate.

The Honoring Investments in Recruiting and Employing American Military Veterans (HIRE Vets) Medallion Program implements the requirements of the HIRE Vets Act of 2017 (Public Law 115-31), which was signed into law May 2017. The HIRE Vets Medallion is the only federal award recognizing exceptional achievement in veteran employment. Program Director Randall Smith said "By meeting the criteria required for a Gold Medallion Award, Austin Test, Inc. demonstrated both patriotism and recognition of the value veterans bring to the workplace."

About Bridge360

Austin Test, Inc. is the parent company of Bridge360 and the founder of Veterans4Quality. Both companies continue to provide outstanding Software Engineering talent and services to companies around the world. Bridge360 is 100% women-owned and headquartered in Texas with offices on three continents including Asia and Europe. Acclaim includes listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and repeatedly on the Austin Business Journal’s Top Software Firms and Top Women-Owned Business lists.


Bridge360 is once again an Austin Business Journal Top Women-Owned Business

September 18, 2020

2018: ABJ List Maker - Top Women-Owned Business - BRIDGE360

AUSTIN – Bridge360 is celebrating their uninterrupted rank among the top fifty Women-Owned Businesses and is congratulating their peers who also achieved this prestigious recognition. Brenda Hall, CEO congratulated her team this month, "Thanks to your client dedication and extraordinary skills, we continue to rank among the best businesses in Austin. This year we made both the Top Women Owned Businesses AND the Top Software Firms lists. We continue to persevere even during these challenging times, keeping our entire focus on our clients’ important work." Bridge360’s growth comes from global enterprise companies across many different business sectors.

Bridge360’s core strengths are based on client trust and commitment; "Always Adding Value". Through the 2008 recession, today’s pandemic and the rising costs of technology experts in Austin, Bridge360 knows how to weather economic uncertainty, overcoming these challenges during their 19 years in business. "Clients need a company they can trust to deliver successful products while eliminating risk and above all, providing outstanding client satisfaction. Our team members know how critical their work is to every client’s business and I am immensely proud of each and every one of them. It is this partnership that enables us to thrive even during this pandemic’s tough time." says Hall.

Austin is the go-to destination for quality of life, quality of tech talent and quality of civic character. As a Software Quality Engineering services business, Bridge360 exemplifies these traits as a great place to work in a great city. "Being a women-owned business in Austin is a privilege and a responsibility. Sustaining our company through this pandemic has taken the commitment of every member of our mighty team." says Hall. "We are excited to have made the list this year and eager to do it again and again and again! This achievement will never be taken for granted."

About Bridge360

Bridge360 is 100% women-owned and headquartered in Austin, TX with offices on three continents including Asia and Europe. Acclaim includes listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and repeatedly on the Austin Business Journal’s Top Software Firms and Top Women-Owned Business lists. Bridge360 was also the 2013 recipient of the International Service Award presented by GlobalAustin and the Austin Chamber of Commerce.


Bridge360 is once again recognized by the Austin Business Journal as a top tech employer

April 8, 2020

2018: ABJ List Maker - Top Women-Owned Business - BRIDGE360

AUSTIN – As a Women-owned small business with almost twenty years of outstanding performance, it comes as no surprise that Bridge360 once again ranks among the largest tech employers in Austin, Texas. Coming in at 79th in the Austin Business Journal’s ranking of top Austin area IT firms, Bridge360 is celebrating this rank AND their previously announced Top Women-Owned business ranking. "Our rank stands strong against much larger companies in Austin and demonstrates not only our year-over-year success, it shows the value that a small business has in the IT marketplace" says Brenda Hall, CEO. "Our custom software solutions and rigorous quality engineering services continue to deliver outstanding performance to our clients from family-owned enterprises to global brand dominators."

Valued for their expert developers and test engineers, the team at Bridge360 customize solutions that are consistently recognized for the benefits brought to their clients’ bottom-line. "We tailor our approach, tools, and techniques to assimilate into each unique client culture" says Hall. "Our team arrives to solve a problem, innovate a new approach and support mission-critical work. This work always belongs to the client." The Bridge360 value proposition transitions the work in process into the client’s hands upon completion. "This approach has stood the test of time, economics and technical product evolution" adds Hall.

Ms. Hall emphasizes the importance of Quality Engineering as the platform for delivering true client value. "Our clients resist the quick fix of an okay code and strive for lasting value from their IT solution. This has been especially true recently with companies acquiring new brands and working to blend conflicting supply chain processes into one reliable process that meets the demands of their customer promise." The company has had several back-to-back years ranking as a top tech employer and top Women-Owned business. Ms. Hall attributes this continued success to the benefits of a strong team providing clients with exceptional value. "We are proud to be recognized again for our position as a strong company and a great place to work" says Hall.

Founded in 2001, the Bridge360 team is based in Austin, Texas and supports client work around the world. Hall emphasizes that to succeed at Bridge360 "you need to be devoted to our client, an expert in your field, and enthusiastic to be part of a small and mighty team. We win together because we truly work together." More information may be found at www.bridge360.com.

About Bridge360

Bridge360 engages and delivers across the entire software development life cycle including program management, architecture, design and development, and testing. Acclaim for the company has included listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and Austin Business Journal’s Fast Fifty, Top Women-Owned Businesses and Largest Software Firms. Bridge360 was also the 2013 recipient of the International Service Award presented by GlobalAustin and the Austin Chamber of Commerce.


Bridge360 repeated their prestigious achievement appearing on the 2018 Austin Business Journal list of top women-owned businesses

September 26, 2018

2018: ABJ List Maker - Top Women-Owned Business - BRIDGE360

AUSTIN – Bridge360 salutes the women-led business leaders in Austin and celebrates their own rank among the top fifty once again. Brenda Hall, CEO attributes the continuous success to a dedication to QUALITY and a devotion to client satisfaction. "We have had much to celebrate this year with new clients, new challenges, and now a new CTO joining our ranks" said Hall. "Our work took us around the world as we helped our clients enhance their supply chain productivity, expand their delivery capabilities, and provide state-of-the-art technological efficiencies worldwide". Bridge360’s growth comes from global enterprise companies across many different business sectors. Bridge360’s core strengths lie in their belief that "Software Can Do Anything." From software customization to CI/CD, Bridge360 knows how to predict outcomes and improve deployments. "One of our client partners told me he knew he needed us right away when he overheard a developer saying ‘It works on my machine’ to explain away a failed build. You know you need us if you hear your managers ‘explain’ issues related to resource constraints, failure to find defects before your clients do, and the inability to predict quality deployments" continues Hall. The Austin community’s strengths are essential for company growth and longevity. "Being a women-owned business in Austin has many advantages because our business leaders support each other and offer rich environments for talented people to thrive" says Hall. Her work on nonprofits and in IT industry circles is focused on sharing knowledge, mentoring others and building bridges. "We are excited to have made the list this year and eager to do it again in 2019!"

About Bridge360

Bridge360 engages and delivers quality software products for their clients all over the globe. Founded in 2001 and headquartered in Austin, Texas, Bridge360 has offices on three continents; North America, Europe and Asia. Acclaim for the company has included listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and Austin Business Journal’s Fast Fifty, Top Women-Owned Businesses and Largest Software Firms. Bridge360 was also the 2013 recipient of the International Service Award presented by GlobalAustin and the Austin Chamber of Commerce.


Austin Business Journal Names Bridge360 to the 2018 Largest Software Companies in Austin List

April 9, 2018

Bridge360 once again ranked among the top software firms by the Austin Business Journal

2018: ABJ List Maker - Top Software Firms - BRIDGE360 AUSTIN – Bridge360 continues to rank among the largest software firms in Austin, appearing once again in the top twenty-five for 2018. Brenda Hall CEO said "Our custom software and rigorous quality engineering service continues to deliver outstanding performance to our clients from family-owned enterprises to global brand dominators. Our expert developers and test engineers customize solutions that benefit our client’s bottom-line and this has stood the test of time, economics and technical product evolution."

One of the select few ranked companies focused on contract custom development, Bridge360 is also the only firm also ranked by the Austin Business Journal as a leading Women-Owned business. From her early days at IBM, Ms. Hall recounts the importance of Quality Engineering as the platform for delivering true client value. "Our clients resist the quick fix of an okay code and strive for lasting value from their IT solution. This has been especially true recently with companies acquiring new brands and working to blend conflicting supply chain processes into one reliable process that meets the demands of their customer promise."

Bridge360 has been adding new talent to the team to support their growing business. "We've grown our team by more than 30% over the past few years" says Hall. "To succeed at Bridge360 you need to be devoted to our client, an expert in your field, and enthusiastic to be part of a small and mighty team. We win together because we truly work together." More information may be found at www.bridge360.com.

About Bridge360

Bridge360 engages and delivers across the entire software development life cycle including program management, architecture, design and development, and testing. Founded in 2001 and headquartered in Austin, Texas, Bridge360 has offices on three continents, North America, Europe and Asia. Acclaim for the company has included listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and Austin Business Journal’s Fast Fifty, Top Women-Owned Businesses and Largest Software Firms. Bridge360 was also the 2013 recipient of the International Service Award presented by GlobalAustin and the Austin Chamber of Commerce.

Bridge360 Named a Top Women-Owned Company by the Austin Business Journal

September 16, 2017

Bridge360 repeated their prestigious achievement appearing on the 2017 Austin Business Journal list of top women-owned businesses

AUSTIN – Appearing once again on the Top 50 list, Brenda Hall CEO attributed the company’s continued success to a dedicated group of engineering professionals and a loyal client base. "We continue to see high demand for software engineers on projects across all disciplines and among all verticles". Bridge360’s growth comes from companies of all sizes, small business owner led to global enterprises, and from their core services ranging from consulting to software customization to complex testing and global readiness.

"We recognized early on that our company would grow if we embraced the culture of our clients and adopted their challenges as our own" says Ms. Hall. In their sixteen-year history, Bridge360 has done everything from enabling client’s software to work anywhere in the world to crafting Testing Centers of Excellence. "We are being asked to build these centers of excellence more often now which is a requirement we saw coming years ago. Leaders need real-time data to make strategic investment decisions which is exactly what a TCoE delivers. And there is nothing more frustrating than watching your intellectual capital walk out the door with staff turnover. TCoEs work to preserve mission-critical history and enable company leaders to make informed decisions by putting the data to work in a usable and effective way." Ms. Hall sees this trend continuing and the emergence of AI in the QA testing field as two of the major areas for future growth.

About Bridge360

Bridge360 is 100% women-owned and headquartered in Austin, TX with offices on three continents including Asia and Europe. Acclaim for the company has included 2013-2014 listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and Austin Business Journal Top Women-Owned Businesses. Bridge360 was also the 2013 recipient of the International Service Award presented by GlobalAustin and the Austin Chamber of Commerce.

Bridge360 Intro - The Secret Sauce

Sept 1, 2017

Veterans4Quality® receives a $10,000 grant from The General Motors (GM) Foundation

May 17, 2017

GM Foundation
 

AUSTIN, TX (May 17, 2017) Veterans4Quality® received a $10,000 grant from The General Motors (GM) Foundation during their second annual Celebrity Charity Jeopardy event on April 28, 2017 in Austin, TX.

Veterans4Quality leaders joined three other area nonprofits in a lively game of Jeopardy that challenged GM division leaders and the nonprofit directors to answer questions about GM and each participating organization. In the end, each nonprofit received a $10,000 grant made possible by The GM Foundation.

Veterans4Quality trains military Veterans in the skills of software quality assurance engineering through fast-track classroom training and hands-on paid internships. Ron MacKay, Executive Director for Veterans4Quality expressed his eagerness to see the power this grant will have for extending the program to more Veterans.

"We want to continue to help and support our Veterans transitioning out of military life. This grant will do just that. It will allow us to pursue technology solutions to better the program, making it more accessible to Veterans and potentially to active military men and women through distance learning programs currently in development," MacKay said.

The IT vocational training program assists in the transition from military life and is offered free of charge. MacKay went on to say what this grant means to Veterans4Quality.

"We are grateful to General Motors for this generous donation. Our work, and The GM Foundation’s support, will assist these warriors in overcoming what is a very difficult transition for some. By learning how to test software, they can bridge that transition gap and find their new place in the civilian world as productive members of society," said MacKay.

Brenda Hall, President of Veterans4Quality added, "We are honored to be recognized by The GM Foundation for our work. Austin has been the ideal community for our program which is taught by area Subject Matter Experts. Thanks to The GM Foundation grant, we are excited to expand our reach beyond our classroom and help more US Veterans fulfill their career goals in the growing field of IT."

Bridge360 Makes Austin Business Journal's Top 25 List

February 6, 2017

Bridge360 is included as one of Austin's top twenty-five software firms according to the Austin Business Journal's, The List.

AUSTIN ― Bridge360, a custom software developer focused on solving complex application issues with superior quality assurance, is honored to break into the top twenty-five software firms on the Austin Business Journal’s, The List.

The 2017 ABJ list of software firms includes those developing their own proprietary products and contracted custom developers. Beyond software development and customization, most of these firms offer continued services such as product updates and Software-as-a-Service.

Bridge360’s commitment to excellence and ability to seamlessly blend into the client’s team are just a few deliverables contributing to their success and trajectory on The List.

Celebrating 16 years, Bridge360 prides themselves on being client focused. Delivering the promise to protect their client's software releases, upgrade, conversions and creations by rigorously coding, testing and correcting defects before their customers find them.

"We are honored to be in the Top 25 software companies in Austin and couldn’t be there without our clients and talented team of software specialists," said Brenda Hall, CEO of Bridge360.

Brenda Hall is the driving force behind its success and her "do whatever it takes for the customer" is what has them singing their praises. Under her leadership, Austin based Bridge360 has become known as the "go to" expert for companies who deploy their products around the across the globe and its technical team is second to none lending its talent to worldwide projects.

About Bridge360

Bridge360 improves client experience with a first focus on delivering quality software. Bridge360 engages and delivers across the entire software development life cycle with support and maintenance. This includes program management, architecture, design and development, and testing. By specializing in solving complex problems at every phase of the project, Bridge360 removes roadblocks to bring clients' software and applications to any market with the highest level of quality.

The Bridge360 customer base includes world technology companies, leading system integrators, federal and state government agencies, and small to enterprise businesses across the globe. Bridge360's clients span industries from Supply Chain to legal to healthcare, automotive to energy, and high tech to high fashion; all counting upon Bridge360 to clear a path for their success.

Bridge360 was founded in 2001 and is headquartered in Austin, Texas with an office in Beijing, China. Acclaim for the company has included 2013-2014 listings on Inc. 5000, Software 500 and Austin Business Journal Top Women-Owned Businesses. Bridge360 was also the 2013 recipient of the International Service Award presented by GlobalAustin and the Austin Chamber of Commerce.

Bridge360 Celebrates 15 Years of Software Excellence

June 10, 2016
Austin Business Journal

Celebrating 15 Years!
 

Company stands test of time staying true to its mission: Quality Software = Client Delight

AUSTIN ― For the past 15 years, Bridge360 has been delivering the promise to protect their client's software releases, upgrade, conversions and creations by rigorously coding, testing and correcting defects before their customers find them.


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Bridge360, with Support of Community Technology Partners, Launches Nonprofit for Veterans

November 3, 2015
Veterans 4 Quality
 

Veterans4Quality™ proof of concept sees enough success to stand alone, graduating 62 veterans through the curriculum and on-the-job training program.

AUSTIN ― The software quality training program geared specifically for U.S. veterans, Veterans4Quality™, launched its fifth course with fall classes starting September 8th. In just one year, the program has provided instruction to 62 veterans; most of whom have already been placed into full-time jobs within the industry.

Following a successful year of Veterans4Quality, a fast-track career-training program for returning veterans, Bridge360 is spinning off the program as a stand-alone 501c(3) non-profit organization. Ron MacKay will lead Veterans4Quality going forward as the organization’s first executive director.

Since the inception of the program, 62 veterans have graduated through four completed sessions. All graduates either have entered the workforce in full-time or contractor positions or been called back to active National Guard duty. The fifth class, which kicked off in September, has 11 students enrolled.

"Bridge360 started Veterans4Quality as a proof of concept that has found amazing success and made a significant impact in the lives of the veterans and their families who have participated in the program," said Brenda Hall, CEO of Bridge360. "It was always our goal to nurture the program through Bridge360 and community technology partners until it could stand alone. To see this come to fruition in such a short timeframe is a testament to the dedication of our team and corporate partners who have come forward in such a shining way to fill a need for those who have risked so much for our country."

Ron MacKay, Bridge360’s inspiration for the program, took over leadership of Veterans4Quality in October. MacKay, a 20-year Army veteran, served in Korea, Kuwait and Iraq. Upon retirement from the Army in 2012, MacKay joined the Austin Police Department where he serves as the manager of the research and planning division. MacKay is assisted with the growth of Veterans4Quality by the founding board of directors which includes Brenda Hall, CEO of Bridge360; Susan Barbour, Chief Operating Officer of Bridge360; Brad Powers, Technology Director for Web and eCommerce at Whole Foods Market; and Carl Shaulis, Director of Quality Engineering for HomeAway.

"I first met Ron in 2012 and he was instrumental in teaching me the challenges that veterans would be facing over the next few years as they attempted to match their military experience to the commercial workforce," said Hall. "Even though we are a small company, we felt like there was something we could do to make an impact plus address a challenge we had in finding top talent to do software quality assurance. Our dedicated team members created the curriculum and volunteered to teach. We recruited great community partners for on-the-job training and just through word of mouth we filled five classes."

Bridge360 launched Veterans4Quality in May 2014 as a free curriculum and on-the-job training program for returning veterans looking for new careers after their military service. The curriculum, created by Bridge360 and dedicated volunteers within the company, provided students with classroom as well as paid on-the-job training programs through community corporate partners including Whole Foods Market, Dell, HomeAway, Alcatel, Alchemy Systems, Everi, the Federal Aviation Administration, Kendra Scott, NewComLink, Pace Americas, Personify, Somnio and Win Learning.

"Our community partners are so much a part of the success story. The momentum we have today is thanks to the other companies that joined in our quest," said Hall. "The program was immediately embraced and supported by Brad Powers and the Whole Foods Market team and Geoff Meyer and the Dell team. As the program progressed, every company we asked came to the table to support the program, providing an instructors network for the classes, paid on-the-job training for the students and then hiring the graduates as full-time employees."

The curriculum and on-the-job training program accelerate the process for veterans to start careers as software quality assurance engineers. Through the program, students complete the 15-week classroom portion of the curriculum and continue learning through a 90-day paid on-the-job training period. Upon graduation, veterans earn a Software Quality Assurance Certificate.

Whole Foods Market will host a celebration of the Veterans4Quality non-profit launch on November 9 from 9:00-10:30 a.m. at the Whole Foods Market building, plaza level, located at 550 Bowie Street in downtown Austin. Corporate partners and veteran graduates will be in attendance.

About Veterans4Quality™

Veterans4Quality was launched in May 2014 by Bridge360 as a free curriculum and paid on-the-job training program for returning veterans. The fast-track career-training program provides coursework and paid hands-on training for becoming a software quality assurance engineer. In October 2015, Bridge360 spun off Veterans4Quality as a stand-alone 501c(3) non-profit organization, appointing Ron MacKay as the first executive director.

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