When Change Equals Business Growth

Disruptive change from the outside world can be a business growth opportunity.

Increasingly, rapid change in the world outside an organization reverberates within it, creating an internal inflection, or change, point. This outside-driven demand for internal change can be disruptive and, at times, even fatal if ignored. But iQmetrix, a Regina company that moved to Vancouver last year, made and executed plans to deal with change, and in the process elevated its business. 


The Problem

In 2010 iQmetrix, which made store management software for cellphone retailers throughout North America, faced such an industry inflection point. The company had ridden the growing demand for cellphones and was generating about $50 million a year in revenue. But wireless was exploding and iQmetrix’s retailer customers were having trouble keeping up with it all. They needed help understanding what it meant to their store operations.

The Solution

IQmetrix had been started 10 years earlier by Christopher Krywulak, and by 2008-09 it had regional head offices in Regina, Winnipeg and Davidson, North Carolina. That’s when an avalanche of wireless devices hit the market, creating many new demands on retailers. Personal mobile computers, smart phones and tablet computers were swarming onto the market, creating a revolution in the traditional cellphone business and turning retailers into application sellers and consultants as much as simple sellers of phones. To keep pace, any company that purported to serve the retailing industry had to become a trainer as well as simply supplying products.

To keep its customer base and ride this wave to more growth, Krywulak and iQmetrix launched an ambitious plan to change into another kind of company, one that would not only supply software to the retail community but become its centre and information hub. It decided to grow by creating more applications and moving higher up the market food chain. 

To do so, however, it had to find the right kind of technology developers, and they weren’t in Regina. Krywulak looked at moving to the U.S., but wanted to stay in Canada, which he felt was more reflective of the company’s communal culture. So last year, the company moved its head office to Vancouver, where it could source a large pool of technology developers familiar within this new wireless scene. He also saw Vancouver as very environmentally conscious, which is a core company value.

As a result of the move and other internal changes, iQmetrix has increased its staff by 60 per cent (to 160 people) and developed a mobile version of its software. It has also developed a sales management tool for retailers that allows customers to interactively test different phones and other products. The software lets buyers try various options virtually so they can make better buying decisions. 

Further, the company, which has concentrated on mid-size retail operations to date, is launching a newer, more robust version of its software to move up market to larger retailers.



• Roll with it. Like most companies in the throes of change, iQmetrix didn’t know what the future held. So rather than resist or ignore change, it decided to embrace it and adapt to it.

• Create the right environment. Previously, company style had proven unsuitable to coping with change, so iQmetrix strived to create a collaborative culture that could react faster.

• Be confident. When confronted with the unknown, you have to move fast to seize an opportunity. This confidence stems from a culture in which everyone is comfortable and feels like they have a key role.