I was reminiscing over the year (it’s been a big year) and I began looking at old Christmas letters for inspiration on how to best distill down a very busy year at Rustici Software. The best Christmas letters have a way of highlighting important moments in the year and providing context for how they contributed to the year-at-large. The bite-sized chunks of information available via social media often miss that context; context matters. This is our Christmas letter.
So, what happened this year?
We updated our three websites along with a suite of renamed products, a new logo and changed where things live on our sites. SCORM.com and xAPI.com are now purely technical resources. You’ll find information and documentation on our products on RusticiSoftware.com. We also launched a quarterly newsletter to keep folks updated on things happening within the industry, our products, and our company.
Just like other years, we attended a lot of conferences and shared our expertise in numerous speaking sessions. But for the first time in a very long time, we exhibited at DevLearn. Our booth showcased our new company logo and branding for all the world to see.
As many people know well, GDPR went into effect early in 2018. The role we play for many of our customers means that we need to be able to provide a set of tools and capabilities within our products to help them become GDPR compliant in their handling or learner data in their LMS platform. We spent a lot of energy during the first quarter prioritizing this work so that we could get it into our customer’s hands as soon as possible.
While we’ve worked with the IMS group for many years, 2018 was the year we added support for LTI as an exportable content type for our Rustici Dispatch and Content Controller products. This work serves as a great example of what working with us is like. We’d had this on our roadmap for years but always pushed it because of other priorities. This year, we had a customer (Oxford University Press) with a real opportunity to distribute their learning content into the academic space and we were happy to prioritize this work for them.
These new features, along with releases to Content Controller v2.1, Rustici Engine 2018.1 and Rustici Dispatch 2018.1, make it simpler to get started with our products and help customers manage ongoing implementations.
Early in the year, we decided to change the way we organize and deploy our development staff. We moved several developers into Technical Lead roles, hired a QA person, and moved one of our developers into a Product Manager role. These changes, collectively, have helped to spread ownership and responsibility for our products across more people and remove bottlenecks.
Another move was that I stepped into the role of CEO at Rustici Software in June and Tim Martin became CIPO for LTG. So far, we’ve been really happy with the changes.
Late in the year, we grew again and added several new team members with the help of Jena Garrett, who came back to help us hire a bunch of really awesome people. We grew our sales, account management and software development teams. In 2018, John Griner, Kyle Bellino, Philip Fallin, and Cameron Gray joined the team.
We also celebrated our longest tenured team members, Joe Donnelly and Brian Rogers, on their 10 year anniversaries. We also had two week-long quells filled with Top Golf and bowling, celebrated Friendsgiving with a potluck and had a magical Thanksmas party at House of Cards.
Here’s to 2019
With another successful year at Rustici Software, I’m thankful for our incredible team, our dedicated customers and the eLearning standards community.
Wishing you and yours the best in 2019.
– TJ Seabrooks, CEO