The Utility Company (News
), a vendor of business software for small and medium-sized businesses, has announced its partnership with The Phone Experts Communications of Calgary and Red Deer, Alberta.
In addition, The Utility Company recently opened new owner-operated franchise locations in Fort McMurray and Lethbridge, Alberta.
The Alberta economy, which is dominated by the oil and gas industry, continues to grow at a staggering pace. Labor shortages remain the biggest challenge for businesses in Alberta, ranging from fast food to the energy sector to knowledge-based jobs like information technology.
So the resultant wages and opportunities for employees make the hiring of an IT professional prohibitive for the typical small and medium-sized business.
The Phone Experts saw an opportunity to focus more on data networking, data services and offering managed IT services to their customers. The key objective, as they saw it, was to "address the SMB's complete technology needs in a managed services model," company officials said, with over 90 percent of the services delivered remotely -- "evolving away from break/fix on site service calls."
"Small and medium-sized businesses' reliance on technology has never been greater, but fulfilling those needs is becoming more and more challenging. This is exacerbated in Alberta with the difficulty of attracting and retaining IT staff," said Clint Oakley, President of The Phone Experts, adding that the Connected Office service portfolio addresses all types of SMB customers with basic remote computer support, to "more strategic technologies like unified communications and hosted CRM and accounting."
The Utility Company's Connected Office Technology-as-a-Service Program focuses on what its officials consider "the five main areas of technology for business:" IT (network, desktop, security, and storage), business applications, Web/Internet, copier/printer and telecommunications.
Earlier this month, The Utility Company announced the launch of its Powered By Utility Managed Services Reseller Program, providing a partnership framework for resellers, telcos and service providers to offer "SKU-able" managed services.
The new program provides partners with the ability to resell the managed services portfolio of The Utility Company's Connected Office Technology-as-a-Service Program, a single-source product addressing things technology for SMBs.
David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To see more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.
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