The Top Seven: Part-Time Pros

Part-Time Pros, founded by husband-wife team Brett Baker and Carey Dunkin-Baker, is not a temp agency.
The staffing firm places degreed, experienced professionals in part-time or contract positions with local businesses. The two started their business in March 2008, following the birth of their daughter in 2007. Both were working full-time jobs but wanted workplace flexibility and the option to spend more time at home with their daughter.
It was a wish they thought they could fulfill for others as well.
“We saw an opportunity to enable individuals who wanted to continue to work on a part-time basis and also saw the economic benefits to companies that embraced flexible work arrangements,” Dunkin-Baker said.
PTP employs stay-at-home moms and dads, retirees, independent contractors and college students who want to work part-time or on a contract basis and still work in challenging, rewarding positions.
The company also helps businesses cut costs by providing them with professionals who don’t require hefty salaries and benefit packages.
Since its inception, the business has grown primarily through word of mouth. The couple has spent no money on marketing to companies and little on marketing to professionals. They thought the Spirit Award, in addition to offering their business the possibility of a $30,000 capital injection, would also award them a little bit of publicity.
“We wanted to go out for the Spirit Award in hopes that the publicity and the PR from it would generate more awareness about what we do so that more businesses would be aware of our services and hopefully create positions for the thousands of professionals in our database,” Dunkin-Baker said.
In preparing their executive summary for the competition, the duo laughed that what they prepared for the Spirit Award was better than the documentation they took to the bank to get a “pretty significant line of credit” to start their business.
“Committing to going through the Spirit Award process forced us to take a step back and put together that executive summary and to look at our business, where it was and where we want to be,” Dunkin-Baker said. “The process in and of itself has really forced us to formalize our business and put together a really solid business plan and, I think, be more focused.”
Dunkin-Baker called the Spirit Award process “grueling” but also pointed out its benefits.
“We have goals of franchising, and I don’t think we’ve had our arms around what is involved with franchising until the Spirit Award,” she said.
“It takes a lot of money and a lot of time,” Baker said. “As we were forming the business plan again for the Spirit Award, it helped us do some research and find out more information about franchising.”
The couple said that any money won from the Spirit Award would go toward marketing their services to businesses.
Once PTP is running smoothly and generating revenue, then the couple will go forward with their franchising plans, they said.
Dunkin-Baker said the award process helped her “think outside the box” in terms of her business and how to make it successful, not only in Tulsa, but on a national scale as well.  

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