This month at Tech Dump we are celebrating 10 years in the IT asset disposition and electronics recycling business. What a journey it’s been! In honor of a decade of doing business here in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro, we thought we’d share a bit about our history, why we do what we do and where we see ourselves in 10 more years.
A BRIEF HISTORY
In August 2011, we held our first electronics collection event geared primarily towards residents. We called it a “tech dump.” For two days, we accepted electronic items residents no longer wanted or needed. Needless to say, it was a huge success and Tech Dump was born. We began accepting drop-offs from residents and businesses at our Plymouth location. We received tons of CRT TVs as well as other household electronics. In 2013, we signed our first long-term lease at our Golden Valley location. A year later we expanded our operations to the Midway area of St. Paul. In 2016, we opened the doors to our retail store, Tech Discounts.
In the second half of 2016, we expanded at our Golden Valley location and even opened a small retail space. By 2017, we acquired a mobile hard drive shredder and started offering mobile shredding services to better meet our customers’ needs. Then, in January 2019, we opened our Vandalia location in St Paul. From July-December 2020, we partnered with Ramsey County and the City of St. Paul library system to put together and distribute laptops and laptop accessories called TechPaks for people whose employment was impacted by COVID-19. As a result, over 500 people received the resources they needed to train or search for work.
WE LIVE OUT OUR VALUES IN EVERYTHING WE DO
Originally called “Jobs Foundation,” Tech Dump is a social enterprise, founded on the belief that everything and every person has value. We meet the needs of unemployed adults in the Twin Cities who experience barriers to employment while at the same time providing secure IT asset disposition services. Today, Tech Dump continues to operate with the same mission. Tech Dump’s work readiness training program is an 18-month program that includes paid employment, customized development plans based on each employee’s career goals and ongoing coaching and support. Trainees acquire internal and external certifications and receive feedback on their hard and soft skills through regular reviews. We also offer job search assistance. The skills trainees acquire are in demand in today’s workforce and with their successful employment at Tech Dump, employers can be confident in trainees’ abilities to do their jobs well and stay employed.
As one of the largest collectors of electronic waste in the state of Minnesota, we have processed more than 35 million pounds of electronic waste—all while adhering to the highest data security standards. We undergo an annual R2 certification and are one of the few e-recyclers in Minnesota that do so. This entails a rigorous annual third-party audit of all processes and procedures.
THE PATH FORWARD
What does the next decade look like at Tech Dump? We are working hard now to double in size by 2025 so we‘ll be able to meet the need for paid employment opportunities, IT asset disposition and refurbished technology. We want every Fortune 500 company in the Twin Cities to work with us for their IT asset disposition needs so, together, we can make an even greater impact on our local community. We also aim to be the work readiness training program of choice for returning citizens in the Twin Cities metro area. Yes, we have big, exciting plans for our future. How will we do it? Two words: Powering forward!
If you’ve been a part of our community over the years or would like to learn how we can support your business, we’d love for you to join us for our St. Paul warehouse wire cutting on Friday, September 24 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Register here! If you’re interested in learning more about what we do at Tech Dump, would like a sneak peek at our new St. Paul warehouse and want to sign up for our raffle, join us for our family-friendly celebration on Saturday, September 25 from 12-2 p.m. Register here!