Sunbelt Pools is a commercial swimming pool specialty company offering quality services and products for over 30 years. The Dallas-based firm focuses on work for municipalities, universities, school districts, institutions and private commercial pool owners throughout Texas and the surrounding states. Projects vary from waterparks to competitive and recreational pools, and include both new pool construction and renovations.
Sunbelt’s president and owner handled IT support for the firm for many years, occasionally calling on VentureNet when needed. As the company grew and their IT demands grew, the pool company realized they could no longer handle things themselves. “It got to the point that I couldn’t do my job and keep the company growing, if I was trying to keep the computers running,” says Sunbelt President Rob Morgan.
VentureNet’s relationship with Sunbelt dates back to the mid-1990s. The two management teams had known each other for a number of years, forging a relationship built on mutual respect and trust. “We considered hiring an IT director,” the Sunbelt president states, “but we realized VentureNet offered us flexibility to handle all our IT needs. It would be very difficult to hire one person to handle the breadth of support they gives us. And they are just first-class people to work with.”
Sunbelt receives the level of IT support they need, when they need it, at a reasonable cost – and they can focus on the priorities of their business and trust VentureNet to focus on the IT needs. Recalls Debbie Smith, Sunbelt’s office manager who now oversees IT: “We were calling on VentureNet more and more to help us with IT support. They were doing a great job for us so it was natural for us to turn to them for full-time support.”
VentureNet assigns a primary engineer for each client, who seeks to build a relationship with that client, learns the ins-and-outs of the client’s network and needs, and takes personal responsibility to meet those needs. A secondary engineer is also familiar with the client and a “bullpen” of engineers is available for special assignments or projects the client may need.
This breadth and depth is one of the things Sunbelt likes best. “We couldn’t possibly have the level of IT support we get from VentureNet by hiring our own IT person,” Ms. Smith points out. “And we like that they provide us a primary engineer who really knows what he’s doing and knows us.”
Over the years, VentureNet has provided a wide variety of IT services for what is now a 40-user, 5-server network. Their technical staff has also provided helpful advice concerning needed network upgrades and expansions, implementing the changes to enhance the pool company’s network infrastructure and performance.
When Sunbelt needed a new phone system, they turned to VentureNet, who suggested a voice over IP (VoIP) phone system that best met the pool company’s telecom needs, handling the installation, staff training and ongoing maintenance as well. When asked why her company looked to VentureNet to handle this need, Ms. Smith replies, “We didn’t really think of looking anywhere else. We have that kind of relationship – we trust them to get us the best solution and have our best interests at heart.”
Sunbelt also turned to VentureNet when they wanted a better data backup solution. The pool company was handling the nuts and bolts of their tape backup system, switching out tapes daily and carrying backup tapes offsite each night. “I was carrying home tapes each night,” recalls Morgan. “It was just one more thing to do and, when we did try to restore from tape, it was always somewhat questionable.” And as their data grew, they found the backups spilling over into the next work day, slowing their network and hampering their staff’s ability to get work done. “It seemed we were always changing tapes and worrying about whether our backup was complete,” adds Ms. Smith. “And we were vulnerable to human error – forgetting to change tapes or failing to carry backups off-site.”
VentureNet’s primary engineer recommended they implement keepgoing.biz, which provides disk-to-disk onsite and offsite backup and business continuity. “Now our backups are complete, headache-free, and totally behind-the-scenes,” says Ms. Smith. “We enjoy a sense of security and peace of mind we didn’t have before. And since we started using keepgoing.biz, we’ve restored data without a problem. When we have lost data – usually at a file or folder level due to human error – keepgoing.biz has made it possible to restore that data quickly, completely, and efficiently.” Adds Morgan of the service, “It backs up our data without us even thinking about it.”
For Sunbelt, VentureNet gives them “one throat to choke” for all their IT needs – network monitoring and support, IT consulting and projects, data protection and business continuity, and telecom circuits and equipment. “It’s so nice to have IT support I can count on,” observes Ms. Smith. “They understand our whole system and take care of our -needs quickly and correctly.
“We also appreciate that VentureNet is our advocate, helping us get timely resolution to our needs when issues need to be solved with Microsoft’s or other’s tech support. Changing from handling our own IT needs to having VentureNet handle them is probably the best move we ever made.”
The long-time relationship is unlikely to change anytime soon. States Morgan, “The service VentureNet provides us is critical for us to keep our business running. If it’s anything computer-related, we call VentureNet.”
Adds Ms. Smith, “What would I say to someone interested in using VentureNet? That it will be the best decision you’ll ever make! You’ll have the assurance of IT support that understands your company and your needs, handles your network expertly and gives you outstanding customer service. Don’t ask me about any negatives because I couldn’t give you any.”