Say you have a good idea for a service or product. No, you have a great idea – one you believe wholeheartedly could find a place in the crowded marketplace and benefit the masses. What do you do? Who can help you fund, nurture, and grow your fledgling company?
These used to be daunting questions, even for those with connections and resources. But over the past 10 years, startups have grown across a multitude of industries. Today our culture thrives on innovation, on success achieved by taking the path less traveled. And what’s more, it’s not just in places like Silicon Valley.
Startup hubs are cropping up across the U.S. – and Pittsburgh has established itself as one of the most vibrant. In fact, the National Venture Capital Association named Pittsburgh one of the top 15 cities in the U.S. for tech startups in February 2013. Since that time, approximately 73 small businesses in the Pittsburgh area have raised nearly $650 million in venture capital funding.
Thanks to organizations like the Pittsburgh Technology Council, InnovationWorks, and AlphaLab, and NextPittsburgh, who generates awareness of Pittsburgh startups to watch, startups at every stage in development are finding success. 4moms, a company that develops baby and child consumer products through the use of robotics and engineering technologies, has experienced explosive growth. NoWait, an app designed to reduce wait time at casual restaurants, counted its 100 millionth guest served. And President Obama recently praised two Pittsburgh startups (Astrobotic and Duolingo) during ‘Demo Day’ at the White House.
A lot of energy pertaining to startups has to do with development and commercialization of the products and services. Makes sense, but startups also need to focus on company roadmaps, operational investments, and scalability. No matter the industry, a startup’s investment in their IT – their network and infrastructure – is one of the most important ones to consider.
The profile of a startup fits perfectly with the Apogee IT Services managed services model in 3 ways:
1. Network & Infrastructure Expertise
A lot of startups live in the technology space. Whether you’re an app or software developer or aspiring to be the next big robotics company, chances are you won’t have IT staff whose skills and knowledge deal with networks and infrastructure. For your startup to be successful, you want to build the right team, which means build both breadth and depth. Don’t force a talented developer to become a jack-of-all-trades. Let your apps guy do what he does best. Consider partnering with a managed services provider like Apogee IT Services. (Notice we said partner.) The longer you stay with an MSP, the more they become part of your company and more invested in your success as a startup. At Apogee, we become an extension of our clients’ companies.
2. Access to Enterprise-Level IT Support
Focus is a tremendous challenge for startups. You need to build an organizational structure. You need to invest in sales and marketing. You need to hire the right team. You need to do…[fill in the blank]. But your time (and funding) are finite. One of the greatest benefits of working with Apogee IT Services is that you immediately gain access to over 30 technical staff who can focus on your IT. This allows you and your staff to focus on building your business while paying one predictable monthly fee that is likely less than you would pay a single in-house IT Tech.
As a startup, you want to be the one that grows and puts a stake in the ground, right? For startups – whether you’re still in the early stages or a more established entity – one of your primary concerns should be scalability. If you have someone with IT experience on your staff of 4, that might work just fine. But in a year or two, what if you employ 40 people? For startups in Pittsburgh, it’s a viable possibility to experience substantial growth in a short amount of time, so you need to plan your business operations and roadmap accordingly. Since we have over 30 technical staff, you’ll have enterprise-level IT support from the start. Plus, as you grow and need new equipment and more resources – we’ll make sure you have everything you need along the way.
As an established IT management provider in Pittsburgh, Apogee IT Services is ready to serve all of your network, IT security, planning and strategy, and support needs. We’ve been serving the Pittsburgh region since 1990 and are committed to helping Pittsburgh startups and businesses thrive.
We also now have a location in Boston, which is also a city known for its innovation and startup culture. (If you’re not sure, just check the Cambridge Innovation Center, VentureFizz, or Google Boston startups to watch.)
Choosing a managed services provider isn’t easy. For startups, choosing the right one is especially important. Make the right investment from the start. Check out our free guide to Choosing the Right IT Provider: