May 9, 2009

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Mark Willes

For decades, Salt Lake City has been referred to as “The Crossroads of the We...Read More

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IT On the Go

Outsourcing Companies Let Someone Else do the Work

By Candace M. Little

May 9, 2009

Successful companies know they can’t be experts at everything. Instead, they rely on other experts to fill in where they fall short. Outsourced service providers cut down on costs and help companies focus on what they do best. In Seth Godin’s book “The Dip,” he explains, “Winners quit all the time. They just quit the right stuff at the right time.” Here are a few Utah-based outsourcing companies helping winning businesses quit the right stuff at the right time, allowing all in the equation to focus on their own expertise. IT Simplicity Lindon-based DirectPointe offers out-sourced IT services to mid-sized companies and has customers in all 50 states and 29 countries around the world. The company provides remote support services with everything from accounting software to computer monitors, and can save the average business 30 percent on its total IT spending, according to Jim Martinos, CEO of DirectPointe. Martinos explains that DirectPointe was started to offer advanced technical assistance to companies without IT support. “The need for businesses to leverage technology is critical and the complexity to do it right is increasing. DirectPointe was started to make technology simple, manageable and affordable for mid-size businesses. Because DirectPointe has made technology its core competency, DirectPointe customers can better focus on their core competencies.” It’s apparent by the company’s record-breaking sales in the past two quarters that mid-sized businesses are turning to IT outsourcing companies, like DirectPointe, to save money and to boost IT capabilities within their company. “As businesses feel the economic pressures on their profitability, their owners start looking for better solutions. That is when they find us,” Martinos says. But this demand surely leads to more competition. DirectPointe was one of the first companies of its kind when it started offering services in 2000, but now there are countless competitors. That doesn’t bother DirectPointe, though. The company has been recognized as an industry leader and ranked No. 1 on the MSPmentor top 10 MSP list for 2008. “We are always working to re-invent ourselves to keep our services relevant to our customers and to keep DirectPointe ahead of the competition,” Martinos says. Wipe Data Worries Away For better or worse, work is no longer left in the office, but carried to homes, to the café on the corner and across the world. Because the office is anywhere you want it to be, valuable information created and used on laptops and sent and received on other mobile devices is an important function of most companies. Though mobility offers convenience, approximately 2,000 laptops are stolen each day, and fewer than 4 percent are recovered, according to the FBI. System back-ups and security can be very expensive and so many small businesses go without. One company offering a solution is Spearstone. Spearstone’s DiskAgent helps businesses take care of their digital property, providing a secure system that backs up information in real-time so work projects and contact information won’t be lost due to a system crash or virus. On top of that protection, the Draper-based company also offers a solution for laptops and mobile devices with sensitive information that are lost or stolen. Dale Goddard, chief operating officer of Spearstone, explains that what sets DiskAgent apart from other similar companies is its “remote wipe” option—an option that wipes out a computer or smartphone’s information if it is lost or stolen, all with the push of a button. But that valuable information isn’t lost forever—it can be downloaded remotely by the correct individual. DiskAgent also helps recover stolen laptops with a $1,000 refund if the company cannot return it. Though most large companies have regular back-up systems, so most of the data is not lost when a device goes missing, almost no small- to medium-sized businesses have a cost-efficient way to keep up with their data back-up needs, says Goddard. “It’s at the bottom of their list,” he says. “And, you don’t think about it until the disaster strikes. The people who are most adamant about having a safety net like DiskAgent are the people who just had a hard drive fail or have had their laptop stolen.” Say Goodbye to PBX Problems Telesphere, a private IP network provider for voice and data solutions, started offering its services to Utah businesses last October and currently has clients in more than 40 states. Telesphere combines all local and long distance voice services, high-speed Internet access, data connectivity, IP phone handsets and business communication features into one service, essentially eliminating the need for companies to own on-site PBX equipment. Like DiskAgent, Telesphere services also support the “work anywhere” mentality. With extension dialing available at a home office or an office across the country, clients are able to reach their coworkers just as though they are in an office down the hall. Telesphere has other features, like simultaneous ring and selective simultaneous ring, that allow a cell phone to ring at the same time as a desk phone, and a unified messages feature, where messages left on an office phone voicemail are automatically sent in an audio file to email, where it can be listened to away from the office. According to Sanjay Srinivasan, Telesphere’s chief technology officer, a very high percentage of all calls that take place in the office are actually made using cell phones. A new service Telesphere offers is a function that makes it possible to transfer a call from mobile phone to desk phone or vice versa without any signs of a transfer being made. This seamless transfer could be a solution for those who are constantly juggling phone calls between cell and office phones. Srinivasan says the advanced features are not the only reason companies use Telesphere, they use Telesphere’s service because it saves them money and makes their business much more productive. He explains that hosted PBX services compared to traditional phone service are less expensive because you are paying for what you need based on your number of employees, rather than the amount of bandwidth you have had to order in the past.
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