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Strong Vendor Relationships = Happy Clients

Strong Vendor Relationships
One of the driving factors that led Patrick Massey and his two partners to start Network Medics was a desire to do IT right.
“We heard several horror stories about companies getting locked into long services contracts and being overcharged and underserviced,” says Massey, principal of Network Medics. “We give our customers flexible service options rather than forcing them into the bundled offering and service level that best fits our mold. For us, it’s all about customer service.”
Five years later, Network Medics has grown into one of Minneapolis’ most successful SMB-focused IT solution providers. Why? According to Massey, the company made two smart choices early on with its business, which helped separate it from competitors and made it easier to execute its vision of doing IT right.
First, Network Medics leased space in an SSAE 16-accredited private cloud data center, which is attached to its headquarters building. Second, it teamed with Ingram Micro, the IT industry’s largest distributor and most valued business partner. The first smart choice helped the IT solutions provider offer customers cloud solutions based on an SLA that it could personally back up. The second smart choice gave the small startup access to dozens of class A technology vendors that it could never have successfully partnered with on its own.
“The Ingram Micro team advises us on which hardware and software solutions are the best fit for specific situations, and helps us get in touch with high-level product managers within the vendor companies to design solutions that will meet our customers’ needs. Ingram Micro also goes out of its way to get us the technical training and other sales and support assistance we need to quickly achieve gold-level status with select vendors and never have to say ‘no’ to our customers,” says Massey.
Massey recalls one customer win with a local government agency where Ingram Micro played a key role. “The client’s RFP specified several dozen Panasonic rugged tablets and notebooks, but we weren’t an authorized Panasonic reseller,” recalls Massey. “In no time, Ingram Micro went to work and helped us quickly become an authorized Panasonic reseller.” With Ingram Micro’s help, Network Medics not only met the customer’s stringent RFP requirements, but ultimately beat a much larger competitor to win the business. The IT solution provider also finds tremendous business value in its membership with the distributor’s SMB Alliance (SMBA) partner community and complementary SMB Invitational. So much so that Massey recently joined the SMBA Council—a move he says has been invaluable to his business.
“Here’s a great example,” he says. “Early on, we were struggling to find a way to incentivize our salespeople to sell monthly recurring revenue solutions. But after discussing the business challenge with our SMBA peer group, we found a resolution that worked, and changed our sales commission structure. We even hired a new service coordinator.”
Massey says it’s great to bounce ideas and questions off companies that are similar to his. “With Ingram Micro and its SMBA community and face-to-face partner events, we can make solid business decisions, and don’t have to guess at the outcomes.”
With Ingram Micro on its team, Network Medics is on track this year to grow 45 percent over 2012, and it’s making a successful business out of helping its customers grow by using IT to their advantage.
UPDATE: Recent Status Advancement

Since 2008, Network Medics has been ahead of the curve by successfully deploying virtualization solutions. In 2014, we powered up to Enterprise Solution Provider status due to our focus on extensive training and certification programs for all team members.