Keeping your business’s information technology (IT) systems up and running and defending them from emerging security threats requires a strategy that constantly evolves. If technology isn’t kept up to date, it becomes more vulnerable to attack and or breakdown.
Carlye Mongraw, co-owner and vice president of Shaw Computer Systems (shawcsIT), has adapted her company’s business model to focus on prevention and business continuity planning.
“Technology changes quickly and new threats emerge constantly that put the data security of businesses at risk,” Carlye says. “The number of computers being infected with ransomware is on the rise — and it’s completely random. No longer are attacks focused solely on large corporations. With the landscape changing this way, we’ve had to adapt in order to better protect our clients.”
Carlye purchased Shaw Computer Systems in 2007 with her business partner Martin Boruta. Prior to purchasing the business, she ran an accounting, bookkeeping, and software training company. As a result, she consulted with a variety of different business clients, including Shaw. Her time as a consultant gave her experience in the diverse needs of many different enterprises — in particular, how these needs relate to IT.
“Shaw Computers has been providing one-stop managed IT services, to both small business and larger corporations in Peterborough and the Kawarthas, for over 40 years now,” Carlye says, “When we first took over the business, we had four staff members including ourselves — now we have eight employees and we’re continuing to grow and expand.”
Over the years, the company has evolved from a traditional IT “break/fix” business model to a more proactive maintenance approach. The catalyst for this was to foster long-term client relationships by better protecting their clients in the ever-changing technology landscape.
“As we were growing the company, it become clear that waiting for something to break in a client’s network wasn’t the most efficient way to service them,” Carlye explains. “When you’re always putting out fires, the client can experience significant downtime and lost productivity in their business. We started to see that it wasn’t the best way to service our clients and it also created high-pressure situations for our technicians.”
“We started looking at how to deliver services differently, more efficiently. Instead of running out to resolve a crisis, we began focusing on services that provided business continuity and more stable technology. Now, instead of waiting for breakdowns, we proactively keep our clients’ systems up and running. Additionally, we ensure that clients are well prepared with data redundancy and backups in the event there is an issue.”
How do you spot a problem with your network hardware in advance? At Shaw, their remote tools monitor your technology and identify problems at their outset. Then a technician will fix the issue remotely or schedule a part replacement — such as a hard drive — before it fails. This method reduces downtime and protects businesses from data loss.
“It’s become clear very quickly that focusing on solutions that improve a customer’s productivity, overall business performance, and efficiency is the way for us to build long-term client satisfaction which is our objective,” Carlye points out. “We are invested in delivering exceptional customized service and, as a technology partner, provide the authentic and honest information business owners require to make informed decisions about their IT.”
Having a well-rounded technology plan is where Carlye and the shawcsIT team can really help. Each client has different needs, and Shaw provides a variety of customized solutions including infrastructure planning and budgeting, remote help desk, system monitoring and maintenance, password management, consulting on data security, and providing cloud backup for disaster recovery.
“Professional, proactive IT management is probably one of the most powerful tools any business can take advantage of,” Carlye explains. “Downtime is expensive. There aren’t many businesses that run efficiently when their computers are down. Staff are unable to work, orders can’t be processed, and billing can’t be completed. Equipment failures, data ransoming attacks, and poor backup protocols can really hurt a business financially.”
But Shaw isn’t just about protecting network hardware. They also have a classroom with an onsite instructor, where you can send your staff for training on many software applications.
“Training creates a boost in employee productivity and morale, and it’s great for teambuilding,” Carlye emphasizes.
Putting the focus on clients as individuals and zoning in on their unique needs is one of Shaw’s strengths. Carlye attributes the “how” of Shaw’s ability to retain clients for as long as they do to a real and genuine interest and investment in what their clients do.
“We have customers that have been us with since the beginning,” Carlye notes. “We foster partnerships with people. The longer that you work with a client, the more knowledgeable you become about their organization — and that results in us being able to provide superior technical services.”
“For us, it’s all about the client’s needs and the trust relationship we build when we meet those needs,” she adds. “We recognize that when our clients succeed, we do as well. That’s a good day’s work in my books.”
Shaw Computer Systems Inc. has recently relocated to new offices at 236 King Street in downtown Peterborough (entrance is off the courtyard in the AON City Centre) and rebranded with a new shawcsIT logo. You can visit their website at www.shawcsit.com or follow them on Facebook.
You can reach Carlye Mongraw directly at email@example.com or at 705-742-2204.