LEWISTON — Carbonite is hiring 58 people, looking to end the year with 320 local employees, and looking further down the road to maybe moving.

But not far.

“There’s just something in the water up there where people are born kind, respectful, patient,” said Robert Frost, Carbonite’s vice president of customer care, speaking from the company’s Boston headquarters.

“It’s amazing,” he said. “The majority of my career has been teaching people how to be nice to customers, how to mange conflict. We just really don’t have to do much of that around (there).”

Instead, employees get down to business.

Ten years after it was founded in Boston, the data-backup company has more than 1.5 million customers, it’s backed up more than 40 billion files and more than half of its staff is located above a bowling alley in Fairgrounds Business Park in Lewiston. 


“The last year for us has really been about fine-tuning our operation,” Frost said in a phone interview Tuesday. “We grew rapidly; we improved the business rapidly.”

There’s been growth on two fronts, he said: One is the creation of an in-house, up-selling campaign by agents who answer calls for technical support. 

“Not so much a sales engine but more of just a, ‘Did you know that you have an external hard drive that you’re not backing up? We have a product that does that for you,'” Frost said. “We’re hoping this is going to be several millions of dollars a year in new revenue for Carbonite.”

“It is completely done with the folks in our Lewiston office,” he added. “Not only are they doing world-class support, but they’re really contributing a significant dollar amount to our bottom line.”

The other front is in growing business customers, which leads to more technical and complex calls, he said, which triggers more hiring from within and a need for more entry-level agents.

“As we’re successful at doing that, the number of people we need is going to go up through the rest of the year,” Frost said.


Of the 58 people Carbonite is hoping to hire in the next two months, 28 are to fill current openings and 30 are for new positions. The average pay at the company is more than $14 an hour, plus benefits.

Carbonite is coming off a year of having won 10 industry awards in areas such as customer service.

“It’s just been a great year for the team in terms of being able to put a stake in the ground and say, ‘Here are our results,'” Frost said. “We’ll typically bring out the beer cart (to celebrate.)”

Since Carbonite moved its phone tech support operations from India back to the U.S. in 2011, it’s slowly taken over more and more space above and beside Sparetime Recreation.

Space hasn’t been an issue, but it will be.

“Next year will be the year that we have to find a solution for that,” Frost said. “That’s a pretty complicated discussion for us. Even if it’s just moving a few miles in a different direction, we may create some complexity for our employees who are taking public transportation, for example. It’s just something we have to think through very carefully.”


But, he said, it will be somewhere within the Twin Cities.

“I’ve been doing this a long time and you just don’t find this anywhere in the world,” he said. “If I had my choice, every contact center I managed would be in the Lewiston-Auburn area.”


“I’ve been doing this a long time and you just don’t find this anywhere in the world. If I had my choice, every contact center I managed would be in the Lewiston-Auburn area.”

— Robert Frost, Carbonite vice president of customer care

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