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Mark Nead

Calyx is a 2019 NorthCoast 99 Award Winner

By | News

Calyx is proud to be recognized by ERC as one of 99 great Northeast Ohio workplaces for top talent. This is the second time in as many years that our organization has received the NorthCoast 99 Award.

NorthCoast 99 is an annual recognition program and event in its 21st year that honors 99 great Northeast Ohio workplaces for top talent. “More than a business award or event, NorthCoast 99 is a yearlong research project ERC established to help employers make a difference in the lives of people working and living in our 22-county region,” noted ERC senior vice president Carrie Morse, who has overseen the program for the last 17 years.

NorthCoast 99 winners participated in a rigorous application process that asked for detailed information on how their organization addresses top-performer attraction, development, and retention in five distinct areas: organizational strategy, policies, and communication; recruitment, selecting, and onboarding; employee well-being; employee engagement and development; and total rewards.

“We’re truly honored to be recognized by Northcoast 99 as one of the best places to work in Northeastern Ohio. We’ve been very intentional in developing a culture that promises both challenge and opportunity,” says Jason Fordu, CEO. “Our entire team deserves the acknowledgment, because they don’t settle for status quo. They’re always looking to create a better way. They make Calyx who we are.”

“We’re thrilled to recognize and celebrate this year’s NorthCoast 99 award winners! With unemployment at a 49-year-low, the benchmarks for attracting, engaging, and retaining employees are higher than ever. Year after year, winning organizations are raising the bar with increasingly progressive and groundbreaking HR practices and benefits that elevate the experience of their employees,” said Kelly Keefe, president of ERC.

The 2019 NorthCoast 99 Awards program is sponsored by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield; CareerCurve; Cleveland Magazine; ERChealth; Gino’s Awards; Maloney + Novotny; Mark Wayner Creative; Meyers, Roman, Friedberg & Lewis; Oswald Companies; Staffing Solutions Enterprises; and Ultimate Software.

About Calyx

Calyx deploys enterprise IT solutions to small and mid-market businesses, delivering proven processes and the best technology and people to create greater efficiency, productivity, and profitability.

About ERC

Founded in 1920, ERC helps organizations make their workplaces great by providing expert people solutions that include training, consulting, research, and HR support services. ERC also sponsors the ERChealth insurance program in Ohio. Additional information about ERC and its services can be found at www.yourERC.com.

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Why Manufacturers Need Managed IT Services

By | Insight

All businesses today have IT requirements, but manufacturers have very unique needs. In fact, they rely on IT for almost everything. When you think about machines doing tightly-controlled production work, as well as the machines to control those machines, it’s easy to see why IT is so critical. It is part of everything operational — logistics, production, customer interaction, supply chain and more.

Oftentimes, manufacturers support the needs of multiple locations, while sharing data, applications and management from a centralized location with fixed budgets and staff. Added to these challenges, IT must help to move forward business objectives, maintain competitive advantages and ensure the security of their intellectual property. Here’s where managed services for manufacturing comes in.

Outsourcing core IT functions to a professional IT solutions provider is a viable solution because it allows IT staff to focus on strategic, business-building objectives, instead of day-to-day break/fix and routine maintenance.

IT solutions providers can specifically help manufacturers in a number of ways to overcome these unique challenges.

Consistency and standardization across systems and locations

Standardization allows for consistency for all processes, especially when it comes to rapid recovery from issues that arise. This is especially true for manufacturing companies that don’t deploy and use the same technology across multiple locations. Various CRM, ERP and other software are used to manage operations. This creates an unnecessary tangle of communications and consistency that thwarts employees and the business in general. Partnering with an IT solutions provider will decentralize IT and make it universally available in the cloud so that all users have the same experience regardless of their location.

Scalability

Scalability—or adaptability—is huge when it comes to managing manufacturer IT needs. Industrial companies often work on large projects that require a small burst of employees and resources. Once the job is completed, the resource needs decrease and the company can’t afford to maintain the additional employees. How can a manufacturer responsibly manage these situations?

Outsourcing a technology ramp-up to an IT solutions provider is the perfect solution because increased workloads can easily scale to the cloud with no upfront costs or time delays. And even better, the manufacturer can easily scale back down when the project is complete, using additional resources only for a specified time.

Predictable IT Spend

By adopting an outsourced IT model, a manufacturer can simplify budgeting with predictable monthly IT fees. Using the services of an IT solutions provider also reduces the risk of downtime through the management of computing, storage and fixed network assets. Soft cost loss and productivity hurdles are also minimized due to less connectivity downtime caused by network fluctuations.

Sufficient IT Support

Staffing appropriately can be a moving target with manufacturing companies. Plugging in the right team members and other resources can vary based on workload and more times than not, staffers spend time putting out fires, not working proactively. When a company outsources to an IT solutions provider, the correct amount of team members and resources are directed to the workload so that work emergencies don’t occur and dedicated staffers can work productively.

Rapid Deployment

If you’re a manufacturer, mergers and acquisitions are a fact of life. So, what do you do when you encounter massive technology integration needs inherent with M&A? You outsource to an IT solutions provider like Calyx that manages quick and easy deployment and integration to a new location or newly purchased business.

Simultaneous Upgrades

Outsourcing IT solutions is a particularly efficient step when it comes to simultaneous upgrades of all servers and devices. What usually would take a long time to complete—deploying machine upgrades—is now easily managed due to the resources of a professional IT solutions provider.

Manufacturing and industrial companies have special technology needs that should only be accommodated by a professional IT solutions provider. When you partner with an IT solutions provider like Calyx, you’ll see lower Total Cost of Ownership, business scalability, streamlined processes, better continuity, security and more productivity for your manufacturing business.

5 Reasons Why Your Business Should Outsource IT

By | Insight

Most businesses have growth strategies that will lead to the need for core competencies that don’t reside within the business, and new tactics are required to maintain or further their growth initiatives. Requiring new expertise does not indicate that a company didn’t plan appropriately. It simply means that it has grown beyond its resident skill sets.

This is especially true in the case of small businesses. Founders build companies based on their passions, and invariably grow to require skills and new tactics that are outside their wheelhouse, oftentimes including IT. Fortunately, IT can be readily outsourced, minimizing the financial and workforce investment necessary to strategically grow the business.

Knowing when to outsource IT operations can be a challenge but we’ve identified 5 of the top reasons why your small business should outsource IT and share them with you here.

1. Minimize the risks. No doubt, your goal is to focus on the parts of the business where you can have the most impact. Areas of sales, marketing, customer experience and more need visionary input. Fortunately, IT solutions providers can provide the tech support necessary to grow the business. They can also provide specialized services for short-term plans.

When you outsource to professional IT solutions providers, you get a trusted partner with the expertise to provide secure services while you manage other aspects of the business. You’ll be able to relax, knowing that cybersecurity issues are being managed with in-depth expertise, minimizing your company’s digital risk exposure.

You’ll also get best-in-class technology solutions to prevent unauthorized access and data vulnerability. Your specialized security team will be able to respond in real-time to minimize data breaches and hacking. With qualified IT partnerships, you don’t have to worry about surprise downtimes, unexpected costs or personnel issues. You do what you do best and your IT solutions provider will do the rest.

2. Enterprise-level IT at lower costs. When you want a fully functioning IT initiative, outsourcing is the way to go. The rest will follow. And even if you’re not quite enterprise-level, act as if you are. A large enterprise typically has a full-time IT staff and can invest in tools and systems to manage all parts of their network. Small businesses usually can’t afford those luxuries but outsourcing offers all the enterprise benefits of expertise and insight as they scale.

3. Immediate value. When small businesses take the IT outsourcing step, they not only get access to the skills and expertise of the IT solutions provider, but also the financial economies that accompany the partnership. IT solutions providers give access to lower software and hardware pricing so companies don’t have to invest on their own. Your human resources can be more effective in building your business instead of working to keep systems running, updated and secure. Cost efficiencies can be channeled into other areas of the business when IT is outsourced properly.

4. Focus on core areas of the business. If IT isn’t your strong suit, don’t try to force the issue. You started your business because you wanted to provide a product or solution. Your passion lies in the development and creating new business strategies so don’t try to become an IT expert. There are things that only you can do such as provide strategic insight and business-building initiatives. Let the IT issues to the IT experts. Don’t ever outsource your core competency but always consider outsourcing the IT elements to a trusted IT solutions provider, you can relax knowing that details are being managed while you take care of what you do best.

5. Experienced IT support. Managing IT costs is huge for small businesses but sometimes cost-saving efforts result in inexperienced IT staffers who can’t work proactively to keep your technology running smoothly. When you outsource to an IT solutions provider, you’ll get pros who know what to do before any problems can occur. Plus, you don’t have time to manage IT issues. Let the pros take over and ease your mind from any technology issues.

Overall, when you partner with an IT solutions provider like Calyx, you’ll see reduced security risks, lower Total Cost of Ownership, business scalability, streamlined processes, better continuity, and more productivity for your small business.