Intellectual property firm makes move to South Dakota
Jobs formerly located outside of US
A rapidly growing South Dakota company is doing the opposite of trendy – and that’s a good thing. Rather than sending jobs overseas, Black Hills IP goes in reverse and sends its paralegal support services, formerly outsourced, back to the states – specifically to Rapid City.
“In the past two years, we have grown from six to 37 employees,” said Ann McCrackin, President. “And, we expect to add another six in the next quarter.”
Black Hills IP has been outsourcing legal intellectual property services – from docketing, to patent proofreading, to obtaining investor information – since it broke away from the Minneapolis-based law firm Schwegman Lundberg and Woessner in 2010.
Because the type of work the company does, extensive training for its employees is required. Black Hills IP was able to secure assistance in some of these training costs from the Governor’s Office of Economic Development’s Workforce Development Program (WFD).
“Staffing and training costs for establishing new businesses are significant. The Workforce Development Program provided funds that helped us grow our office quickly,” said McCrackin. “The training is generally a six-month process that involves a mix of classroom training, one-on-one, on-the-job training, and self-directed learning.”
McCrackin said that since Rapid City is situated near two paralegal schools, the company has a talented pool of professionals to draw on as the business expands.
“South Dakota has been a great location for us. We have a talented pool of professionals to draw from as our company expands. And, we can provide better and faster service to our customers than our competitors can from India and elsewhere,” McCrackin said.