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Q&A: Meet a Tech Genius & Office Plant Guru

March 13, 2020

Joe Chacko, Associate Vice President of Business Technology, is as likely to know how to fix a stubborn bit of code as he is how to resurrect the aloe vera you left to fend for itself while on vacation.

This amateur horticulturalist sat down to chat with us about a project he’s really digging and his personal mission to populate the office with just as many plants as people!

Tell me about your journey to Ardeo Education Solutions.

I was a developer at an interactive gaming company before coming to Ardeo. I was excited for the opportunity to lead a team and not spend 100% of my time writing software. I also wanted to get back to working for a startup – the culture, pace and urgency makes work so much more fun than at larger organizations. Ardeo is the third and best startup I’ve been a part of.

What’s something clients find useful about the LRAP Client Portal (LCP)?

What clients find most useful about LCP is probably the reporting. The “Download All Data” report and the “Download Call Notes” report provide a pretty good, informative set of information about how the award process is going for that institution. For instance, if a student is contacted, our clients will know whether the student is interested in attending the school or if they’re not interested and why. That information is available to the client, who can make useful decisions on it in the future.

What’s something you’re working on that you really enjoy?

One of the projects I’m working on right now that I enjoy is called the client data exchange project. Basically, we’re taking information we have about our award process, which we house in our LRAP Client Portal, and push it to our clients so they can import it directly into their own CRM and ERP systems. The purpose of that is clients typically like to work in their own systems, and if we can facilitate importing that data about students – whether they’re interested, whether they’ve signed – clients can take more immediate action to get those students enrolled in their school.

What is a movie you can practically quote from start to finish?

I am a Lord of the Rings nerd.

You’ve brought in and care for a lot of plants in the office. Why do you think that’s important?

We have a very modern office. The office was built just over a year ago, and while that’s nice, I like to help soften the view inside the office with some plants. I love plants, I love nature and gardening so that’s something that I just like seeing. As I’ve been adding more and more plants, one of the personal challenges I’ve made is seeing how many plants I can put in the office before my boss says, “enough is enough!”