By Karen Mann
Reinaldo Lopez said he didn’t have a choice when it came to starting his professional employer organization business 13 years ago.
Lopez had been working for a similar company, based out of New York, which offered human resource and other employee administration services, such as worker’s compensation and life insurance policies. When that company went out of business, its clients were left with the benefits packages. “I had sold a certain service to clients, and they expected a certain service,” said Lopez. “They didn’t know the company, they knew this face.” Lopez cashed in his life insurance policy and opened his own business, Resource Management, Inc., to continue servicing his clients. When his office opened in the basement of his home in 1995, Reinaldo netted $90,000 in total revenue that first year. Now, Resource Management occupies the whole second floor of the office building on 281 Main St., and in 2007 grossed over $151 million in revenue.
The company also received special recognition from Hispanic Business Magazine, being named one of the top 500 Latino-owned businesses in the country. Out of 2.6 million Latino-owned businesses, Resource Management was ranked 46th, based on revenue. It is also the largest Latino-owned business in the Northeast.”I never ambitioned it would be this big,” said Reinaldo. “I am humbled that we reached the top 500, never mind 46.”
Resource Management services 5,700 clients in 29 different states. The PEO is meant to help small- and mid-sized businesses by taking over human resource and other employee-related administrative duties for the business. “Many times a business owner tries to wear too many hats,” said Director of Human Resources Trish Barnes. Resource Management can handle payroll, tax filings, worker’s compensation, health insurance, and retirement packages, and any human resource needs. “Our HR staff takes issues from all walks of life,” said Barnes.
Resource Management is the largest homegrown PEO in Massachusetts, according to Lopez, and he said it is becoming the most dominant in the area. In 1998, the company started branching out throughout New England. In 2004, after attracting clients in the south, Resource Management opened three offices in Florida. “Everyone wants to have a local connection,” said Lopez. Lopez believes the relationship his employees have with his clients, along with the vendors and the market for his company, has lead to its success.
“I am very thankful to the staff I have. They take great care of our clients,” said Lopez.
The staff at Resource Management is not just like a family, it literally is the Lopez family. Reinaldo’s three children all work with him. Daughter Rachel works in the insurance department, son Alex is the director of marketing, and son Naldi is the operations manager. “Most of my life I have been working with him,” said Naldi, who chronicled his work history, starting at the age of 6, when Reinaldo owned a cleaning company and Naldi stood beside him, broom in hand. Alex remembers stuffing paychecks and filing invoices at the age of 13, watching his father hard at work. “When you see someone that motivated, that driven, it is inspiring,” said Alex. Reinaldo hopes to retire and leave the company in the hands of his children, and eventually his grandchildren, right now he has three.
He envisions opening two more offices in Tampa and Orlando, and hopes Texas will become the next home for Resource Management. However, the company that was born in Fitchburg and has thrived for the past 13 years from an office based in Fitchburg, will always remain, in Fitchburg. “We will always keep a presence in Fitchburg, this is our home. I am proud to say I live in Fitchburg,” said Reinaldo.