HR and Technology Solutions Helping Engage a Community

Des Moines Community Playhouse benefits with Aureon’s HR and Technology Services, allowing them to focus on engaging their performers, audiences, and the community.  

The lights. The stage. The performances. The applause. These are the elements of a theater experience. Each audience member has bought a ticket and has come to the theater to be entertained for a few hours, and perhaps lose themselves in the experience. But what the audience doesn’t see is everything that goes on behind the scenes to make it all happen.

The Des Moines Community Playhouse provides entertainment to the central Iowa area, but there is a lot more to it than that. At its core, it’s an outreach to individuals in the community, to help those people who have no other place to go, or no other place that feels like home.

“I love when a fresh, new actor gets it, experiences that connection with the play, and then makes the audience connect to the experience, too,” said John Viars, Artistic Director.

The Playhouse works with a variety of performers and skill levels. Some of them have experience, and some of them have never acted before. All of them are volunteers, and they dedicate their valuable time to the theater. Somehow, in just six weeks of rehearsal—often in addition to a full-time job or a full day of school—they come together to put on a high-caliber performance for the audience.


"As a former performer myself, I love creating the place that I love to be at, and Aureon helps us accomplish that.”

Rod McCullough, Playhouse Managing Director


Let’s go behind the scenes of the Playhouse. Think about how the plays get created, how the tickets are purchased, and how the Playhouse operates on a day-to-day basis. There is a lot that goes into running a theater and managing a full-time staff of employees.

Years ago, the Playhouse realized the need for changes to be made to some critical back-office functions, including HR and technology. In 2003, they had bookkeepers and employees managing their payroll, but they could see problems on the horizon, and they realized that a change needed to be made. They saw that their benefits were getting more expensive, and started looking for an alternative solution.

As technology advanced, the Playhouse saw a need for more comprehensive IT and network services. They needed reliable servers to keep their network up, and allow customers to purchase tickets at any time. As the years progressed, they also realized they needed remote access to their email services and access to Wi-Fi throughout the entire building.

“It seemed natural for us to advance our technology,” said Viars. “We actually wanted many of these functions before it was even possible.”


Instead of trying to find one partner for their HR functions and a different partner for their technology services, the Playhouse chose Aureon to handle both areas of their business.

This allowed them the ease of working with one provider, rather than dealing with separate companies.

“There’s definitely a big benefit to using just one provider for everything. It makes a huge difference!” said Rod McCullough, Playhouse Managing Director.

Aureon stepped in and became their complete HR department, offering them a more robust and comprehensive benefits package, payroll management, workers’ compensation, compliance, employment services, manuals, and all of the other aspects of a fully functioning HR department.

"Aureon has definitely helped take the worry away from an HR perspective,” said McCullough. “And as the years have progressed, it’s only gotten better.”

The Playhouse’s technology is a similar story. Aureon was able to provide fast and reliable servers so that the Playhouse’s ticketing system would always be up and running. The technology also offered employees the capability to work remotely, and even enhanced their Wi-Fi so that it could be accessed throughout the building. The Playhouse also leverages Aureon’s communication services for its internet and voice needs.

“If we’re not selling tickets, we’re not making money,” said McCullough. “Overall, having Aureon manage our technology has been a more cost-effective and efficient way of doing things. It’s been smooth sailing so far, and it lets us be flexible with our time and energy.”


Because of Aureon’s technology and HR solutions, the Playhouse is able to work on what they do best: serving the community by providing opportunities and entertainment to those who seek it.

“It allows us to focus on the creative side of our business, without having to worry about the back-office side of things,” said Viars.

“As a former performer myself, I love creating the place where I love to be, and Aureon helps us accomplish that,” said McCullough.

In the end, the Playhouse is free to do what they love: engaging artists and audiences, and making a difference in peoples’ lives.

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AUREON · West Des Moines 7760 Office Plaza Dr. S, West Des Moines, IA 50266 · 833-558-9869