The Norman Alan Company specializes in providing IT support to small businesses. Based in Greensburg, PA., the 11-year-old company has made a name for itself in the Pittsburgh metro area through customer referrals. Remote IT support, server monitoring, and Internet security are provided by the Norman Alan Company to more than 300 customers. The company uses several Microsoft Hyper-V virtualized servers to run its helpdesk software and a main application used for all customer information. Most of its clients have PC-based environments with one or two servers.
In 2014, the Norman Alan Company became a Trend Micro Managed Service Partner as a way to improve customer security. “Our customers come to us because they have been misled or have an ongoing problem that a prior vendor was unable to solve for them. Customers look to us to provide a more stable solution, get to the root of the problem, and fix it instead of bandaging it,” said Jeff Kochis, founding member of the Norman Alan Company and a 20-year veteran providing IT services to small businesses.
Small businesses in recent years are outsourcing their applications or converting to cloud-based software. For example, customers who used to purchase Windows Small Business Servers are now moving to Microsoft Office 365. The shift to the cloud is driving concerns about securing data on PCs, tablets, and laptops. “Our challenge is keeping customers up and running all the time, ensuring they understand the limitations of cloud-based applications and possessing redundant Internet connections that give us the best opportunities of accessing client software on a regular basis,” said Kochis.
“Cyberattacks are becoming more direct and sophisticated,” said Kochis. In this threat environment, the Norman Alan Company is devoted to providing reliable and stable solutions at a reasonable cost. “In small business, every penny counts. It’s challenging to find the right security software at a price our clients can afford,” Kochis added.
Most customers have long-term relationships with the Norman Alan Company. When the company was ready to switch security providers, they ran into no resistance. “We are into blunt truth. Our customers are used to that approach and they appreciate our honesty. They know we aren’t just trying to make a sale,” said Kochis.
Norman Alan Company
After ten years as a reseller for a well-known security software company, the Norman Alan Company was tired of infected client machines. To test the security company’s capabilities, they set up a demo machine to go to infected sites. “Our former security company wouldn’t indicate that anything was happening, and yet our machine would be fully infected,” said Kochis. “It was great in its day, but as soon as spyware became more predominate than viruses, their protection was next to useless.”
That’s when the company started evaluating Trend Micro’s hosted Worry-Free Business Security. “We found we could go to the same infected sites and Worry-Free would prevent access and alert us that something wasn’t right. It was simply a matter of a solution that worked versus a solution that didn’t work,” said Kochis. “Once our customers found out what additional features and added protection they were going to get, they made the switch.”
Norman Alan Company
Deployment of the Trend Micro solution has been seamless for customers. “With Trend Micro, our small business customers can go about their real jobs more freely, because they have a product installed on their machines that is doing the protection and monitoring for them,” said Kochis. “Our customers just want a solution that works. They trust us to handle the details.”
Customers using Worry-Free Business Security have access to all features of the solution for complete threat protection and web security. Worry-Free Business Security defends against viruses, spyware, and other malware, such as advanced targeted attacks and spear-phishing. It blocks threats in real time in the cloud before they reach machines. Web reputation prevents access to URLs that pose security risks, while URL filtering controls the websites employees can access.
Worry-Free Business Security makes it easy for the Norman Alan Company with one console for centrally managing all their Worry-Free Business Security customers. According to Kochis, when problems surfaced during implementation, the Trend Micro support team responded with extraordinary speed and competence. “Our Trend Micro channel sales representative and support staff have been fantastic. They always get back to us quickly, keep us in the loop, uncover the issue, and resolve it within an hour or two,” said Kochis.
Norman Alan Company
With Trend Micro, the frustrations that the Norman Alan Company encountered with their previous security provider went away. “We’re more efficient with Trend Micro, because we waste less time on hold to fix orders, fix licenses, and get to tech support,” said Kochis. Making the switch has been seamless for the company’s customers. If they notice anything, it’s that they aren’t having security problems. “Our small business customers aren’t losing valuable working time because of infected machines,” Kochis added.
The company’s customers aren’t the only ones streamlining their work lives. “Trend Micro has reduced the amount of work related to antivirus products by a good 25%,” said Kochis. “Call volumes are down for those customers who have switched over to Trend Micro.”
Most importantly, Kochis has found a vendor who understands his company’s needs and delivers a satisfying business relationship. “When I call our sales rep, I’m not waiting for a call three weeks later. He calls me back within the hour. That’s a huge benefit over the situation with our previous provider,” said Kochis. “Trend Micro provides a product that actually works and someone to talk to who makes you feel like you are important to the company. I recommend them highly.”