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New Blog Smell & An Alternative Recruiting Process

Keith Shields November 18, 2014

Ah, the sweet smell of a fresh blog. What could be better? Actually, disregard that question; after a bit of thought, I can think of a handful of better things. Namely, walking outside and not having my lungs ache from the cold air. But, [inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]we can’t get everything in life, especially in Columbus Ohio in the middle of November[/inlinetweet]; so, we’re settling for new blog smell, and we’re glad you’ve joined us!

We thought that now would be a fitting time to introduce you to your new digital partners. As our list of clientele increases in size, we’re in expansion mode, and so is the core team of folks you’ll come to meet when working with us.  Here you’ll gain insight as to each of our backgrounds and how we can apply our very unique talents towards creating an amazing piece of software for you and/or your company.

When we first gained an eye for increasing our bandwidth by ramping up our team size, our brains defaulted to nothing but inviting some of the smartest people we’ve met at our time at The Ohio State University to join us. After all, we’ve accomplished some great things in the two short years since founding, and in the even shorter 8 months since forming So we needed a team that could not only keep up with this growth but also help to accelerate it. And you know what they say…[inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]the only way to make yourself better is to surround yourself with people that are smarter than you[/inlinetweet]. I’ll spare you the details of learning more about myself, Keith, and my co-founder Joshua. You’ve heard what we’re all about whether that be through Applits winning’s Coolest College Start-up of 2014 or browsing our companies’ websites in the first place. What we think you’ll find even more interesting is the new talent that we’ve brought aboard.

In our short two years as business owners, Joshua and I have learned something that you may not hear every day. This is that – despite the stereotypes – some Engineers are uniquely capable of solving highly technical problems but also doing something as left-brained as writing a beautiful piece of literature and managing social relationships with ease. Wait, what? We’re still talking about Engineers, aren’t we? Admittedly, this is very rare, but Joshua and I have experienced both sides of the coin in recent years as I wrap up my Mechanical Engineering degree from Ohio State and as he studied Engineering prior to dropping out. That’s why we jumped at the opportunity to bring three such Engineers onto our team when they told us that they’d be willing to turn away their high paying post-graduation jobs in favor of the startup lifestyle. All of them have had their own entrepreneurial ventures prior to joining, and all of them are experienced in managing large groups of people effectively.

This is our highly alternative recruiting process; we’re simply retooling these intelligent brains from managing an Engineering firm’s manufacturing plants to managing our software development resources, and we only see great things ahead. Learn why below.

Ian Smith

Meet Ian Smith. Ian is a classic example of what you don’t think of when you think “Industrial Systems Engineer.” He’s a sociable guy who is also highly capable of solving unique problems, and his street smarts make him the perfect Business Development Lead for Aside from helping with our increased demand for managing client relations, Ian will be on the forefront of acquiring strategic business partnerships that will continue to bring forward in our competitive industry.

Like you’ll come to learn about all of the guys we’ve recruited, Ian hasn’t been just sitting around during his time at The Ohio State University. As an Industrial Systems Engineering student, he’s founded the Columbus Love T-Shirt brand that gives back a majority of all profits to charities in our community here in Columbus. Columbus Love has found great success partnering with top organizations in the Columbus area, a testimate to Ian’s networking ability. He hasn’t slacked on his Engineering training either, having interned with the likes of Honeywell Aerospace and Veyance Technologies. Ian was also the OSU campus President of The National Society of Leadership and Success. Learn even more about Ian on his LinkedIn profile.

Jake Bowles

Next we have Jake Bowles. After recruiting Jake, we realized we should change our company’s slogan from “Creatively Bold. Humbly Priced.” to “[inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”Designlico” suffix=””]It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to create an app, but it sure doesn’t hurt.[/inlinetweet]” Jake was slated to head to SpaceX before deciding he’d like to enter the startup scene instead, and we couldn’t be more pleased about his decision.  We think we can provide enough challenges to keep him engaged, sure, but perhaps not as many challenges as what he saw when working on rocket propulsion for space ships. It blows our minds that he thinks we’re more interesting than rockets — so thanks for that confidence booster, Jake!

Before SpaceX, Jake interned at Rolls-Royce. He is working to wrap up his Mechanical Engineering degree at Ohio State with the rest of us, and spends his free time hacking away on neat side projects like and Check some of those out & learn more about Jake on his LinkedIn profile. His coding experience makes him the perfect technical project manager for our clients here at Designli, thus his “Project Management Lead” title.

Jake Larkin

Last, but certainly not least, we have Jake Larkin. After recruiting Jake, we realized that we’ve already messed up our “” email structure; luckily, the talent we’ve secured with “Jake v2” is unparallelled. Jake is yet another example of a Mechanical Engineer who is also uniquely interested – and capable – in the world of start-ups. Maybe our soft spot for Jake lies with him being the President of the Business Builders Club, the Ohio State student organization that we have frequented over the past two years and that caters to startup-minded University students. Or, perhaps it’s because he’s one of the top students in Ohio State’s Engineering program. Whatever it may be, Jake is a previously-unheard-of mix of technical know-how, big picture thinking, and work ethic that will take far. Luckily for our clients, he’ll also take their projects far, as he joins our other Jake in the Project Management Lead role.

Aside from the Business Builders Club, Jake has worked as an Aerospace Research Assistant for the University of Florida, and has done some work on airplanes that we can’t even begin to wrap our heads around. Namely, he designed a patent-pending tool for Boeing, was a mass properties intern for Gulfstream Aerospace, and occupies the remainder of his free time leading two other student organizations of his own invention: the Common Cents Investment Group and Inspire OSU. Learn more about Jake on his LinkedIn Profile.

So, there you have it. Will we need more than just Engineers on our team soon? Absolutely. But as their bios attest, these Engineers are not just Engineers, and Designli will benefit from these top brains that are not constrained by the classic Engineering mindset. We are all business builders, and our efforts will become focused on the common Designli goal: delivering to our clients the unique mobile and web solutions they need to become leaders in their respective industries. Now that is exciting!

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