A Monumental Partnership
Just a couple of years ago, Epic Technologies was primarily a telecom VAR that had recently transitioned into managed services. However, their foray into IT wasn’t going as smoothly as Don Viar, Epic’s managing partner, had hoped. Viar had become frustrated dealing with what he calls a “hodgepodge of vendors” and investing hundreds of man-hours into configuring software, monitoring networks, and other mundane tasks.
“Historically, we were running the monitoring software in house, using one third party for the NOC, trying to get them to help us monitor, and using another third party for helpdesk services. But Continuum brought us a much better monitoring solution married to an enterprise-class NOC, plus the Help Desk. They really bring it all together in one relationship for us,” Viar said.
The Continuum partnership enables Epic to be a complete, outsourced IT department for their growing clients without investing in additional head count. According to Viar, “Continuum looks and feels like a natural extension of our services, so there’s never a differenetiation between what Epic is doing and what Continuum is doing in the eyes of the customer.”
Epic’s senior technicians are freed up to tackle higher-level support issues, strategic planning, best-practice assessments and facility build-outs, because Continuum handles all of the monitoring and Help Desk support. As a result, Epic’s service board went from having as many as 120-130 open tickets to an average of 40-45 tickets.
Viar said that the Continuum partnership has “far, far exceeded expectations” for Epic Technologies, helping them nearly double their managed services revenue in 2012. In addition, they were able to stretch the coverage of their senior technicians over a much larger number of supported users without hiring any additional resources.
“That flexibility has allowed us to aggressively pursue some growth with one of our existing health care clients that is expanding to become a national chain of clinics,” Viar said. Thanks to Continuum’s NOC and Help Desk, Viar is confident in Epic’s ability to continue to grow with the client; and the client has echoed this confidence by extending their contract with Epic for three more years.
Leveraging the Continuum Help Desk has helped Epic reduce some of the strain on their existing internal staff, allowing them to be more responsive. And since the NOC takes care of those middle-of-the-night network monitoring issues, many problems have already been fixed when Epic’s clients wake up in the morning.
Viar mentioned a metric that is particularly important to him, service level agreements, have also improved since his team began working with Continuum. “SLAs mean we do what we say we’re going to do, when we say we’re going to do it, with a high degree of reliability. We went from 82% to 96% since we started working with Continuum,” he said.
Viar admits it can be daunting for small telecom vendors to break into the managed services arena due to the fear of the unknown. That’s why it is important to find the right partner as you make the transition. “We’re encouraging fellow telecom dealers to realize Continuum gives you a great vehicle for making the move into managed services, because they do bring so many strong, enterprise-class services to you in one relationship,” Viar said.