A few days ago I got around to updating my profile on various social media sites like LinkedIn and Facebook with my current employment information… and thanks to the wonders of modern algorithms, dozens of people I’m connected to on those sites promptly started congratulating me on my “new job”.
Thing is, I didn’t actually change jobs. I’m in the exact same job I’ve been in since May of 1998 (although the job has expanded and grown with me), but I’m on my third employer in that time frame.
“Wot?” you say?
I started at IDX Systems Corporation in May of 1998. IDX was a Vermont health care software corporation with offices in Seattle, Boston, Dallas, Chicago, and a few other places. We wrote and sold the software that did the scheduling and billing for hospitals and physician practices (we also had an imaging division and an EMR division, but I did very little work with those).
GE bought IDX in late 2005 and rolled us in under their “GE Healthcare” division. Unfortunately, GE a) didn’t really seem to know how to run a software company, and b) the massive losses in the Great Recession in the GE Capital division caused GE to turn around and slash the legacy IDX workforce, getting rid of products we were developing, cutting back on new initiatives, and so on. We continued to operate, but I can’t tell you how many great co-workers were either RIF’d or took other jobs. GE had a tremendous sense of commitment to its existing and new customers, but the urge to grow, expand, and enhance our software products just wasn’t there.
So when GE started its serious struggles in recent years, we all wondered when the other shoe was going to drop. Were we going to be spun off, sold, shut down, what? The answer came in the spring of 2018, when Veritas Venture Capital agreed to buy the value-based care division of GE Healthcare (basically the legacy IDX products and staff with the exception of radiology and imaging systems) and spin it off into a new company. Veritas was an unknown to most of us, but we soon learned that Veritas has a track record of buying underperforming operations from other companies, investing in them, and getting them strong enough to sell off again. And as far as we know, that’s more or less the plan for us. Right now we’re all feeling pretty optimistic.
The sale to Veritas closed in July and we operated in kind of a weird limbo of sort-of-GE and sort-of-not under the name “VVC NewCo”. We’re still in that limbo (my email address is still ends in @ge.com and my laptop is a GE laptop, and so on) but as of a couple of weeks ago we finally got our new name: Virence Health Technologies. But my co-workers are the same co-workers I had before GE sold us, and in some cases, they’re the same co-workers I had back when I worked for IDX. Our customers are the same customers I worked with before the sale. Operationally, very little has changed. So far. I expect things to get interesting as the remaining connections to GE are severed and the company’s shiny brand-new leadership launches us on exciting and challenging endeavours.
Same job. Third employer. Life is weird.