Fast 50: Culture leads to success at Tapestry Technologies

Tapestry Technologies has used its emphasis on culture and employees to build one of the fastest growing small businesses in the government market.

Tapestry Technologies takes its company culture seriously -- as seriously as you can possibly take it with weekly cookouts, baseball games, picnics and theater trips, said company co-founder and CEO Jacquie Sipes.

“I think what we really try to do, because we are in the services industry, is we aim to hire very good employees and then what we want to do is to get them working in a great environment and give them an opportunity for success,” she said.

Tapestry’s company culture was recognized in March, when the company was certified as a great workplace by independent analysts at Great Place to Work, and in June, when it was named as one of IDG’s Computerworld 100 Best Places to Work in IT, according to the company’s website.

In addition to regular morale-boosting events that cater to the company’s 100 employees, Tapestry has a formal mentoring program, provides training allowances to employees and hosts a lab that offers employees the chance to learn new technologies, Sipes said.

“[The lab] allows the folks to be able to learn new technologies or apply new technologies into their current work,” she said. “That gives our folks the ability to expand their knowledge and that keeps them fresh in their technology areas, because moving forward, we want to make sure that we’re staying on the leading edge of technology.”

Additionally, the vast benefits the company offers provides employees with “the ability to be successful” at the company, she said. 

Tapestry is No. 47 on Washington Technology’s 2016 Fast 50 list with a 50.18 percent compound annual growth rate over the past five years. This is the company’s first year on the Fast 50 list.

The company was originally founded in 2006 in Chambersburg, Penn., as a cybersecurity company. Over the years, Tapestry has expanded its focus to engineering and IT services and training, said Angie Fogelsonger, vice president of business development. It works mostly within the Defense Department and its primary customer is the Defense Information Systems Agency.

Other customers include the Navy, Army, USCYBERCOM, NIST and NSA.

Tapestry has a prime contractor spot on GSA Schedule 70, works as a subcontractor under Encore II, Veterans Administration Transformation Twenty-One Total Technology and GSM-ETI and is currently providing Tier I, II, III and helpdesk support through task orders.

One of Tapestry’s larger projects is the development of the Defense Department’s Security Technical Implementation Guides (STIG).

“That’s something that kind of sets the standard when somebody is going to connect one of their systems to a DoD network,” Fogelsonger said. “It sets the standard for how they should be configured and if they’re not doing things the way the guides suggest, then they need to provide justification for why they’re not doing that to get a waiver.”

Some of Tapestry’s past projects also include the development of DISA Gold Disk, Security Requirements Guide, Continuous Monitoring and Risk Scoring and the Digital Policy Management System, in addition to helping to integrate the Security Content Automation Protocol into cyber defense efforts.

The company also supports the Defense Department’s enterprise computing centers and conducts cybersecurity training, Fogelsonger said.

This past year, Tapestry looked to add new capabilities, and started a virtual desktop infrastructure project, software-defined networking and cloud computing, she said.

In the next year, the company will concentrate on expanding into other federal markets.

“I think what we want to do is take our core capabilities and we will grow them outside of DISA within the DoD, and then we’d also like to expand into other federal space,” Sipes said.