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#StartupSpotlight: Kristen Buchanan of Edify

Kristen Buchanan

What’s the name of your startup?
Edify

What’s your title?
CEO and Founder

In which city (or cities) is your company located?
Portland, Oregon

Describe your startup and its product/mission.
Edify is a software company dedicated to removing friction from every aspect of an engineering team’s daily life. With eddy, Edify’s software engineering onboarding Slack bot, managers are able to rapidly support the transition of software engineers into new roles. eddy automatically onboards new hires, supports their learning process, and connects them with coworkers and resources to help them reach productivity faster, stay at their job longer, and be happier in their work.

What got you into launching a startup
My first company started in 2014, a learning & development consulting firm that architected and delivered technical onboarding programs. There, I developed a method I called the “learning touchpoint matrix,” which organizes information and learning content for new hires in engineering. Building software and this new company was the next step in continuing this work and I owe my mentor Luke Kanies for pushing me to make it happen.

What’s been the biggest challenge? Your proudest moment? 
The biggest challenge in the past year was moving from prototype to coded MVP. We had a bit of a bumpy ride with contractors, a development shop, and early hires who didn’t end up working out for the long term. It was a challenge that Jayme, our Director of Product, and I had to face and learn how to communicate better with others outside of the tiny circle we had at the time. On the other hand, I am most proud of how my team has been committed to customer discovery from the start, and that our customers love what we have built for them so far!

What are the short and long-term goals for your startup?
In the short term, we’re part of the 2021 Techstars Seattle class preparing for our general availability launch. We’ll keep building tools for the increasingly remote and hybrid workspaces of the future, dedicated to the needs that growing software engineering teams have. Our long-term vision is to be the operating system that enables engineering teams to build the best products in the world.

What’s your favorite thing about our region’s tech ecosystem? 
The community is incredible — there’s no shortage of people doing incredible work in the Pacific Northwest that is shaping our collective future and there’s a sense of camaraderie in trying to make the world a better place through our startups.

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