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Three years on the Inc 5000 list

What does it take to grow consistently enough to wind up on the prestigious Inc 5000 list three years in a row? Let us show you.

Faith Benson
Faith Benson
· 3 min read
Three plants in the initial growth stages - Three years of growth

@studio_cj | Unsplash

If you’re like me, every time you read about a company who achieved something out-of-this-world awesome, your thought is: “Okay, cool, but how?” I can’t be the only Nosy Ned in the room; that’s why Guy Raz has a job. But I think it’s cool when businesses proactively answer that question for you rather than playing it coy. 

(Spoiler: we’re about to release a whole season of The Frontier Podcast doing just this.)

Every year, Inc. magazine releases its Inc. 5000 list, showcasing the 5,000 fastest growing companies in the United States. We’ve found ourselves on that list three years running, which begs the perhaps obvious but worthwhile question: how?

When we’re in the weeds of operating a business or building software, we often miss the forest for the trees when it comes to this kind of reflection. So this year, we made a point to sit down and take a magnifying glass to the last three years: what were the linchpin moments that helped us achieve an average of 209% growth over a three-year period? Here’s how we see it: 

2020

  • Rank: 1,335
  • Growth: 334%

Ah, 2020. The year that burned the phrase “unprecedented times” into our collective lexicon. We all remember the year for different reasons, but it’s safe to say that 2020 brought with it massive change for all of us. 

In our world, 2020 was a watershed moment. We had spent the better part of the previous decade helping business leaders understand the value of hiring a remote workforce. Almost overnight, the world jumped on board with this sentiment. Like disposable mask manufacturers or sourdough bloggers, we were suddenly hit with more demand than we had bargained for, but we stretched to meet it all the same. 

As for the factors within our control, we committed the first line of code to our web app in late 2019 and released user-facing versions in early 2020. Thanks to our extremely discerning product and engineering teams, each iteration of the app has driven tangible efficiency gains for the business. The takeaway here: hire really, really good developers. We can help you with that. 

2021

  • Rank: 2,822
  • Growth: 141%

Marked by the start of The Great Resignation, 2021 put plenty of companies in peril and left them wondering if their staff attrition rates were about to climb. We knew it was more important than ever that we were serving the developers on Gun.io well, and doing everything in our power to make multidimensional, human matches between candidates and teams. 

So, we spent 2021 building out our Developer Relations team. DevRel is comprised of senior developers whose mission is to give developers the best hiring experience of their lives. We exponentially increased our capacity to give feedback to applicants, understand what drives a game-changing match, and build real relationships with talent in the network. 

The result was a year of Gun.io engagements that vastly outperformed national retention rates and resulted in pretty rad outcomes for companies and devs alike. 

2022

  • Rank: 3,430
  • Growth: 153%

2022 has stayed firmly planted on the max dial of the chaos-o-meter when it comes to the economy as a whole. Once again, we’ve found that our core value serves folks incredibly well in this moment: access to fractional hiring of senior, game-changing talent is a low-risk, high-reward way to grow during uncertain economic times. We’ve been able to quickly place developers who were impacted by layoffs and help companies scale while conserving capital, and this theme is at the core of our growth this past year.

Interested in working with Gun.io? We specialize in helping engineers hire (and get hired by) the best minds in software development.

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