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For a company to survive, maintain its position or even grow in the current economic climate is pretty tough.
We re constantly squeezed for time, resources and reliable sources of information.
Decisions are becoming harder, good advice is difficult to find and translating ideas into viable, profitable projects is becoming difficult to asses the risk. This leads to indecision, inaction and missed opportunities.
If this sounds familiar: we’d like to tell you our story.
Today we are a managed service provider. How we got there, having started at the beginning of the financial crash of 2008, high street closures and budget cuts.
Before NorthWales Media was born Phill John (our director) had aspirations to become a programmer/developer, offering his services having recently qualified with a computing degree and thinking that all of the worlds needed our services!
Turns out, that most of our customers did not view him as a programmer, but someone that had a degree in computing and therefore asked advice on which equipment they should purchase next.
The word IT meaning Information Technology covers a huge spectrum of skill and services, but our customers would still think that as a computer programmer, Phill knew everything about hardware, however, the two skills are miles apart and can only be compared to as *insert good analogy*.
Due to this, our primary retail company “WeDoPC” was born. In order to provide the customer with exactly what they wanted and needed, we quickly realised that there was not much profit in new equipment as IT hardware was either leased or brought on a whim because people just looked at the price and had the illusion that all computers were pretty much the same. So, we realised that the benefits of buying high-end refurbished lease equipment were much better specification than what the retail stores were selling to the public, at a fraction of the price. This also lead to a unique opportunity where our programming skills allowed us to develop a barcoding track and trace system for the recycling industry.
From this point onwards, we had a unique understanding of the IT refurbishment industry and the sources of equipment and acquiring a good quality supply chain.
So, this leads to the analogy that although we started off wanting to program, first and foremost we had to give the customers what they wanted which is what lead us to achieving our goal.
As we continue to grow we could not ignore the shift of computing services onto mobile phones and the development of cloud applications which allowed all of the devices to share and communicate with each other. We acquired a mobile repair company and started to introduce sales of refurbished mobile phones into our portfolio. This was initially separated into three companies WeDoPC, PhoneAsylum and NorthWales Media in order to reduce the risk.
The success of WeDoPC and PhoneAsylum lead to the expansion of 3 retail stores and hence some of our problems began.
We realised that a business cannot expand into multiple outlets without systems, systems and more systems. Initially, we developed our own, however, the cost, time and effort to do so while the business suffered through lack of stock control, adequate training and the ability to analyse the demands of each location, which were, of course, different from each other. The fact that we underestimated this so much lead to the closure of two of the retail units as we retreated back to our original beginnings.
At this point, NorthWales Media had lost sight of its role and the initial ambitions to become a software development company and during this period major changes and innovations were being brought forward in the tech world.
NorthWales Media started to develop a business plan, it looked towards various organisations for help, advice and funding. Like many other businesses, this was not an experience that we look back on fondly.
We started looking at our core principles and realised that it does not matter what you do in life, if you do not have an outreach towards marketing the message and convey to your audience that you have something that they might want then you will fail.
So, the plan was to introduce a marketing element to our company and merge all of our services, which is where we are today.
By far, the best decision that we have ever made was to use our experiences in our other business activities and to see ourselves as advisors, support technicians and with marketing, being able to provide what the customers always wanted. The lesson was really that we “techies” can get a lot of the “techie” things right but we obviously got some of the business things wrong.
By focusing on our business and core principles we started to develop long term views towards our customers. Realising that if we found it difficult to navigate through what IT can do for your business in terms of efficiency, cost-savings, productivity and overall better customer service, then our potential customers must be experiencing the same issues.
NorthWales Media now manages the majority of services for our customers. Giving them time to get on with business. Our strategy of looking at their business plans for us to be able to create a strategy for their IT Support and Marketing elements of their business has yielded massive dividends. We have customers that have started from zero that have become top in their industry and multi-million-pound prospects in less than three years. We have been able to advise customers and provide marketing assets that can be turned on and off on demand and can fill the order books within weeks. We have also taken businesses from a costly hobby to a profitable business.
So, if you are a company that is looking for someone who truly has long term relationships at its core, who deal with companies that are within reach so that we can have face-to-face communication, then talk to us.
A different approach
We can provide your business with a completely transparent way to manage your services.