Making Big Moves as a Small Business: How Frontier Strategies has continued to evolve over time

Frontier Strategies is a talent acquisition company that has grown tremendously over the past years in both size and capacity.

“We’re an IT services and talent acquisition company, we’re focused right now almost explicitly on federal contracts, IT service contracts,” said Abe Casillas, president of Frontier Strategies. “Our core competency is talent acquisition.”

At the forefront of Frontier Strategies, a faith based values company, is Abe Casillas who has worked as an IT recruiter and account manager for over 20 years. A little over six years ago, Casillas was working at a health care staffing company and had desires to launch his own business. He began first in consulting with entrepreneurs to learn more.

“I started planning it and asking people that were entrepreneurs, ‘what advice can you give me to start up?’”

One suggestion that Casillas consistently encountered was to save enough capital to be able to pay bills for a year. After conversations with experienced entrepreneurs, Casillas was ready to launch Frontier Strategies.

“I jumped in; I went for it,” he said. “I started the company.”

After three months of existence, Casillas started making money in the bank and has continued to remain consistent with work.

“Since our inception we’ve been busy every day,” he said. “Our focus has changed, but right now we have set up a foundation for our company to grow.”

In the first couple years of business, Frontier Strategies’ business plan aimed to maintain a low overhead, underbid and outperform his competition, and to offer enticing benefit packages.

“We have what I would consider top-of-the-line benefit packages for our employees because we want to be able to compete with the big boys, the big companies,” he said.

Three years in, Casillas began transitioning and adjusting prices to reflect more like a business instead of a sole proprietorship. In addition, the company has pivoted in focus and most recently began responding to proposals for federal contracts. All the meanwhile, Casillas has searched for win-win situations, something that he would recommend to aspiring entrepreneurs.

“First thing you should do as an entrepreneur is as you’re building your business, earn your seat at the table,” he said. “Find how you are going to contribute and ask, ‘What do I bring to the table that this other company does not bring?’”

Frontier Strategies first started as a home-based company, but after visiting the Maestro Center via the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Casillas wanted to take his business to the next step.

“I saw what they had there, it was affordable, and it was taking it to the next level from being a home-based company to having an office with an incubator.”

After a few years at the Maestro Center, Casillas continued to work towards what was next which was to find his own office space.

“It was a progression. First, it was home-based. Then, it was working at an incubator. Now, I have a nice office downtown.”

In terms of future goals, Casillas would like to see his team of four grow into more than 10 by the end of the year, maintain consistent growth, and to be able to provide a quality environment for his team.

“I have worked for small business before, I wanted to make sure when I started this business that my employees would be compensated and that I would be able to hire good talent,” he said.

Most recently, Frontier Strategies is working in partnership with their SBA-approved mentor to pursue bigger projects with support from their mentor.

“That’s the next big thing that we’re excited about,” he said.

In the end, Casillas aims to continue fostering mission and culture for his business and team.

“I want to create a culture of respect, customer service, and excellence,” he said. “I want to make sure we have those things in place and that we have happy employees and we treat them well and we pay them well.”

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