Founded in June 1999 in the basement of their first home in Wexford, PA, President Scott Simons and Vice President Kimberly Simons of SRS Computing have grown their startup to a full-service management software company serving the funeral industry and over 5000 locations.
SRS Computing now provides seven products, custom to funeral homes, crematories, cemeteries, and more, and is continuously offering new features and solutions. Scott and Kimberly work endlessly to grow SRS Computing and their dream of serving the funeral industry, and have cutting-edge plans for the future.
Take a look back on the full history of SRS Computing published in August 2015.
Company Spotlight – SRS Computing
Scott Simons is the son of a 3rd generation funeral director. Many of you can relate to that statement and understand all that goes along with it. Add to that, his sister, brother, uncle, and cousin are also directors at Simons Funeral Home in Pittsburgh. Getting crowded, right? Now you are wondering, did he follow in his father’s footsteps? Well, no and yes.
Scott Simons is also the President and founder of SRS Computing, the industry leader in Funeral Home, Cemetery and Crematory Software.
Scott’s pathway to founding SRS Computing started in the late 1970’s when his father, G. Scott Simons, purchased an IBM ‘green screen’ personal computer with the intent of eventually replacing his office typewriter. Armed with DBase I, a very early database programming language, G. Scott set out to write his own management program. “I remember it took me 2 weeks to figure out how to move a period over two spaces on the receipt! It was the beginning of computers on the desktop and I was determined to make it work,” commented G. Scott. After 2 years and many frustrating hours, he created a program that could record cases, invoices, payments and write billing and receipt letters that would print onto the programmable typewriter. Hours of typing were saved and probably the first funeral home management software program was born.
“I told my father, ‘You’re lucky, you start these families along the first steps in their healing, but I see them when they are losing hope.’”
After college, Scott earned a Master’s Degree in Radiation Physics and was working at Johns Hopkins University teaching and treating cancer patients. “My mother died of breast cancer and I had a vision that I could make a difference in cancer treatment. I took my work very personally and enjoyed collaborating with some of the most talented physicians in the world. We used cutting edge science that I hoped would change patient care. Honestly though, it was depressing watching people struggling in the final stages of their life,” Scott stated. “I told my father, ‘You’re lucky, you start these families along the first steps in their healing, but I see them when they are losing hope.’”
“It takes a strong team and a passion to be extraordinary and we have both.”
In 1993, building on the programming he learned as a child and in college courses, Scott took the first version of what his father wrote and created an application using the ‘latest and greatest’ programing language, Visual Basic. “I wrote it in my spare time and it was fun to delve into the new technologies. I did it to help my dad because once Windows took over, his original program would be obsolete along with his data. It was my small contribution to the funeral home,” said Scott. “At the time, I never had any intention of starting a software business.”
In 1999, after ten years of physics, Scott decided to make a career change. He was accepted into Carnegie Mellon’s prestigious business school and in the same summer, started SRS Computing. “It was perfect timing”, explained Scott. “We used SRS as the model for every project – Marketing, Finance, Entrepreneurship, Accounting, Strategy – the guys in my group would give me ideas every night and I would put the ideas to work the next day. It was like having five talented consultants on staff with zero salary.”
“My wife Kimberly joined SRS in the first week after a miserable afternoon of making sales calls. I just wasn’t a sales person and she is tremendous. Kimberly is a huge reason for SRS’ success. She lets me focus on managing the technology,” Scott states. “It takes a strong team and a passion to be extraordinary and we have both.”
SRS’ attention to customer service is rooted in Scott’s family’s business. “Growing up in a ‘funeral family’, I learned what it takes to provide quality service,” Scott said. “I remember dad taking a death call during Christmas Eve dinner and someone asked why he had to leave right away. Dad said, ‘It’s Christmas for us, but for that family, they just lost their grandmother and we need to go.’” SRS prides itself in serving their clients in a similar way. “You can pick up the phone and talk right away to one of the programmers who wrote the code. We take care of most issues on the initial call,” says Adam Best, Senior Programmer at SRS for eight years. “We’ve built a great program, but it is only as good as the support.”
SRS Computing is driven by Scott’s generational mix of a century of funeral service and his constant drive to lead this unique software industry. In a proud moment, Scott stated, “I’m surrounded by wonderfully talented people and we enjoy what we do. I’ve modeled SRS’s service as a funeral director expects to be treated and give them exceptional tools so they can serve their families better. It’s as close to being a 4th generation funeral director as I’ll ever get.”
For more information, please call us at, 800-797-4861.
Reprinted from American Funeral Director Magazine, August 2015, with permission of Kates-Boylston Publications. To subscribe to American Funeral Director visit www.americanfuneraldirector.com.