Meet Sandy Sorzano

Director of People + Brand at MMA Design

“I’m not overstating things when I say Benefits Administration totally changed my life last year. Our benefits administration process after open enrollment went from being a 3 week grind that I never looked forward to, to something that only took a couple days. I was like, ‘Oh wow, that actually went smoothly. Let’s do it again!’”

— Sandy Sorzano

The Results

Sandy Sorzano, Director of People + Brand at MMA Design, is highly protective of the company’s much-loved, tight-knit culture. So when inefficient processes started taking more and more time away from the work that builds and preserves that culture, Sandy knew it was time for a change. After implementing BambooHR Benefits Administration, she now has more capacity to give her strategic initiatives the attention they need.

A 4-WEEK MARATHON BECAME A 3 DAY SPRINT: Though MMA shuts down as a company for a couple weeks to observe the holidays, Sandy had never been able to unplug like her colleagues and enjoy the break. Before BambooHR, benefits administration was a grueling, error-prone process that sometimes stretched from December 15—Sandy’s deadline for receiving employee selections every year—into the first two weeks of January. Benefits Administration shaved this process down to less time than it takes to thaw a celebratory turkey.

“My family and I took a trip this year,” says Sandy. “We left town. I didn’t even look at my computer. It was awesome!”

MORE TIME FOR STRATEGIC INITIATIVES: Instead of spending the first few weeks of the year correcting benefits (and consequently payroll) errors, Sandy was able to get a headstart on 2023 Q1 marketing initiatives. With more time back on her calendar, she no longer feels rushed or burdened by repetitive administrative tasks. Benefits Administration has freed her up to take the time and mental energy she needs to creatively strategize fresh approaches to old campaigns.

EASIER, SEAMLESS PAYROLL DEDUCTIONS: “We used to do benefits in this very manual way, and we also used to do payroll in a very manual way… [and] that process was riddled with errors, too.” But all that changed when MMA adopted BambooHR Payroll in 2021 and Benefits Administration the following year.

“The fact that I could manage everything in BambooHR and that would automatically communicate to Payroll…it was just so easy and seamless. Now I feel super confident… [Payroll] is just something I can do for half an hour on a Monday or Tuesday morning.”

UNANIMOUS EMPLOYEE VERDICT: “EASY PEASY LEMON SQUEEZY!”: After implementing Benefits Administration, Sandy quickly learned that the process was not only easier for her but also for all her employees. She polled them on their experience making their self-service benefits selections with BambooHR, having them choose from the following three answers:

1. It was a pain in my backside. (0%)

2. It was okay, but could use some improvements. (0%)

3. It was easy peasy lemon squeezy! (100%)

READY TO TAKE ON NEW PROJECTS AND GROW: As the Director of People + Brand, Sandy guides and protects MMA’s company culture as closely as she monitors its external brand, so growing sustainably is a huge priority for her. Not having the appropriate software and processes to support necessary growth, especially with “a lot of big programs in the pipeline,” was a serious concern before BambooHR.

Benefits Administration not only made preparing for that projected growth possible, but accurate and easy. Without it, supporting and streamlining the benefits enrollment process of an increasing number of employees simply “would never have worked,” says Sandy.

The Challenge

Sandy describes MMA’s benefits enrollment process before Benefits Administration as lengthy, chaotic, and error-prone, and every year she could expect the same experience. After a long, disorganized slog collecting and clarifying employee elections through almost every means of communication—ever-lengthening email chains and text message threads, fly-by shoulder-taps, and phone calls—she then input everyone’s selections into a spreadsheet. But she could always count on mistakes, which would then snowball into a huge deduction headache during the first payroll.

A CHAOTIC, ERROR-RIDDLED PROCESS: “People would forget what they wanted or asked for, forget to sign up for something, or I’d lose track of the thread,” Sandy recalls. “There was lots of piecing things together, lots of back and forth, taking all the way to the end of the year. ... It was just this chaotic process. Between gathering information and getting it right, to having no central place for people to check that it's right—there are always errors.”

ADMINISTERING ELECTIONS TOOK WEEKS AND WEEKS: Even though MMA Design shuts down for a few weeks at the end of the year so all of their employees can fully unplug and enjoy the holidays, Sandy always had to use this time to finish benefits enrollment. “It would take me from December 15 to January 1 to get them all administered,” says Sandy. “And then, at the beginning of the year, invariably something was wrong.”

CORRECTING ERRORS THREATENED A STRICT QUARTERLY SCHEDULE: In addition to being the sole HR representative at the company, Sandy oversees all of MMA’s marketing operations, including brand strategy, content creation, event planning, and more. Juggling these responsibilities requires her to follow a strict quarterly schedule. With yearly marketing prep and initiatives filling her Q1 schedule, Q4 benefits season always made for a lonely, stressful race to the finish line.

UNPREPARED TO SUPPORT NECESSARY GROWTH: “We have a lot of big programs in the pipeline,” shares Sandy, and navigating the benefits enrollment minefield would only get harder if nothing changed. “We knew that we couldn't continue to grow sustainably and scale without some support,” says Sandy, “both on the manufacturing and engineering work that we do, as well as the things that we do to keep building the team.”

The Solution

Sandy led the adoption of BambooHR in July 2021 and then launched Payroll just three months later, but it wasn’t until implementing Benefits Administration in time for 2022’s end-of-year open enrollment period that Sandy experienced the exponential time-savings of managing all her pivotal HR processes in one place.

EMPLOYEE SELF-SERVICE BENEFITS SELECTION: The ability for employees to self-service their benefits selections in BambooHR was the key to changing everything Sandy dreaded about benefits season, making it easier than ever to educate her people on the current benefits package and accurately collect their selections. “Helping make BambooHR a little bit more self-service for me was really meaningful,” says Sandy. “It was incredible actually. … I’m genuinely so grateful to you. You’ve made a huge difference. … I think your team has really designed something very thoughtful. … Hats off to your user experience people!”

CLEANER DATA FOR REPORTING AND ANALYTICS: BambooHR provides Sandy and MMA a secure, central database for all employee data, with the ability to pull standard and custom reports in an instant and uncover the insights necessary for strategic decision making. Additionally, by ditching her master benefits spreadsheet and incorporating benefits data into the BambooHR database, it’s now easier for Sandy to coordinate with brokers and providers through employer portals while ensuring accuracy.

A PEOPLE-FIRST APPROACH TO HR SOFTWARE: As the first and sole HR presence at MMA Design, Sandy has been able to define what human resources means for the tight-knit company, and it was the people-first philosophies she found at BambooHR through webinars and other educational materials that ultimately drew her to the all-in-one platform.

“A lot of other HR tools I looked at were like, ‘We do payroll, and then we tacked on all this HR stuff,’ but BambooHR was really like, ‘We do people stuff,’...which was kind of more what I cared about. I always kept coming back to BambooHR.”

Now that she’s implemented Benefits Administration, Sandy now manages all HR processes for MMA on one platform, creating a seamless, unified experience for herself and her employees.

About MMA Design

MMA Design makes highly engineered, custom solutions for space missions that need power, imaging, and communications to fulfill important science and defense functions. The (mostly deployable) systems they develop, build, and deliver are ingeniously packaged—lightweight, compact, clever, and elegant—so their customers’ important missions can reliably accomplish big things with smaller packages and price tags.


Aerospace Engineering and Defense


Louisville, Colorado

Number of Employees



Benefits Administration, Payroll

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