MADISON, WISC. – Have you ever noticed how the concept of “service” differs greatly from one industry to another? For instance, a lot of people have a hair-stylist they’re loyal to. Or they may have a favorite restaurant server or bartender they visit with regularity. In the business world, it’s not unusual to have a trusted financial advisor, advertising representative or even legal counsel. Personalized service with a focus on knowledge and meeting needs and expectations are de rigueur in such industries.
But what of IT and communication services? These are important fields most businesses rely on daily. Yet they are not viewed as particularly user-friendly. In fact, they are often seen as necessary evils that most individuals and businesses require but do not enjoy many aspects of. From need-assessment to researching IT and communication firms to being upsold on questionable additions to maintenance, most find dealing with technology to be headache-inducing and ultimately expensive.
Richard Marty, owner of Compel Consulting in Madison, has built an IT firm that strives to change these negative perspectives. His 18-year old company, which employs four fulltime technicians has reworked the expectations of an IT company from the ground up, focusing heavily on, expertise and personalized customer service to create customized and budget-sensitive solutions for more than 50 business’ IT needs in Dane and surrounding counties.
“I’ve heard the frustrations of hiring an IT company from every angle,” Marty says. “Traditionally, the list of negatives far outweighs the list of positives when it comes to overall service, timeliness and cost. We want to change all that.”
Marty compares the bulk of negative experiences with IT to how most people view cable television providers.
“When something goes wrong with your cable, you want it fixed ASAP,” he says. “But that is far from the case. You call in. You’re put on hold. When and if you speak with an actual person, he or she opens up a numbered ‘trouble-ticket.’ Service is then scheduled but only a vague timeline of when a tech will arrive is given. Understandably, people do not respond favorably to this method of conducting business, yet we all seem to go through it.”
Marty says when it comes to products and services Compel Consulting offers, he and his staff make every effort to do the opposite of aforementioned scenario.
“The initial consultation with a perspective client is of utmost importance to us,” he says. “It’s our way to learn about their specific needs, expectations and budget. We need to understand their business in order to provide solutions for their continued success. Our success is based solely on the successes of the clients we represent.”
Marty says Compel Consulting establishes a true partnership with their clients from the beginning. And strict attention to personal service never erodes over time.
“Every client is immediately introduced to their representative,” he says. “This is the tech they will have throughout their partnership with us. Our techs are trustworthy, loyal and knowledgeable and they establish themselves as a sort of offshoot employee of a client’s business.”
Customers and clients are not anonymous “numbers” to Compel Consulting. They are treated and respected like friends. And if for some reason a technician is out on leave or vacation, each and every client the tech works with is notified.
“We strive to maintain open communications with our clients,” says Marty. “And we do not apply call charges… ever,” he says. “We encourage people to call us. If we are unable to answer a call, we guarantee a one-hour call-back for clients with contract retainers and a four-hour call-back for non-contracted customers. “
Aside from never charging for customer calls, Marty says Compel Consulting does not apply trip charges for service calls like most IT companies. “And we also never assign service tickets to jobs,” he says. “If there is a problem or issue, we are on it immediately.”
Above and beyond everything else, though, Marty makes it clear that each client is treated like a true partner and is not going to be nickel and dimed for every amenity Compel Consulting offers.
“We are not a law office, so we don’t charge our clients like one,” he says. “We are in the service industry, and in the service industry, you go the extra mile to make sure every client and customer is treated like a trusted friend. We are only as successful as our clients.”
When asked to rank Compel Consulting’s business model hierarchy, Marty replies, “1: Service. 2: Data loss prevention. And 3: IT affordability.”
Compel Consulting Inc. started in Madison, Wisconsin in 1998. Over the past decade they have grown into a leading provider of computer services with approximately 50 business clients throughout southern Wisconsin. They combine personalized service with affordable technology solutions – offering small business clients the products, partnerships, and round-the-clock technical support they need to keep their businesses running. They help businesses achieve their goals by making technology work for each client and their specific needs.