By Christine Graf
StoredTech (Stored Technology Solutions) recently expanded its headquarters at 543 Queensbury Ave. in Queensbury. The company leases the space and expanded into an area vacated by a previous tenant.
According to president Mark Shaw, the expansion was precipitated by the company’s exponential growth.
“We added 5,000 square feet, and we are now 20,000 square feet in Queensbury. We are continuing to grow. We have a ton of new business and are adding new clients every week.”
Since being founded in 2010, StoredTech has experienced double and triple digit growth. Shaw predicts 40 percent growth in 2019 and expects sales to reach $11.5 million. Sales in 2018 were $8 million.
StoredTech is a managed service provider (MSP) that provides information technology (IT) support to customers throughout the world. Seventy percent of their customers are located in the Capital Region. They also have customers throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia.
Shaw, a Glens Falls native, has been working in the IT field since he was a teenager. At age fifteen, he established a small computer consulting business. He operated that business until graduating from college and accepting a job with a large, multi-national corporation.
It was because of his corporate IT experience that Shaw decided to start his own company. He set out to establish a business that was customer focused.
“For years, I saw what I considered sub-par IT support. The focus was always on the IT company and the cool technology they could sell you. There was a lack of customer focus and customer delight,” he said. “I decided to take my large enterprise background and tie it in with what is available for small businesses today. I wrapped that around a desire to purely delight clients. I created a model which I thought we were missing in this area, and I think it’s worked very well. We’ve gone from two people in my house in Glens Falls when I lived there to right around sixty people in four locations.”
In addition to their headquarters in Queensbury, the company has offices in Plattsburgh, Albany, and Raleigh, North Carolina. Approximately 40 of the company’s 60 employees work in Queensbury. Their workforce is growing steadily, and five additional employees are starting in the coming months. StoredTech also has nine open positions.
“It’s a very challenging market, and we’re very picky with who we hire,” said Shaw. “We have this concept of customer delight, so I can’t grab any Joe Shmoe off the street. Our staff has to have the desire, the attitude, the skill, and the innate desire to please and delight people. They have to have a deep skill set and they have to like working with people.”
According to Shaw, it can be difficult to find skilled IT professionals who also possess excellent customer skills. As a result, they work with numerous recruiters and recruiting agencies. They also offer incentives for referrals made by current staff members.
“Ever since the economy really started humming, staffing has been our biggest issue,” said Shaw. “But the good news is that we are a place where people want to work. We have a fun, really cool company culture.”
“A lot of tech companies want to sell you tech for tech’s sake,” he said. “We want to understand what the business does and how they operate. We use technology as the vehicle for how you can be more productive and more efficient. We are going to give you solutions, alternatives, and options that might be really, really good for you.
“We are helping them grow their business using technology and by understanding what will help them get them from where they are today to where they want to be. That’s where we have been able to provide a ton of value. We’re not just coming in and selling technology. We are becoming part of the fabric of their organization.”
StoredTech serves customers in many demographics. Clients range in size from “one guy with one computer” to multi-billion dollar companies with tens of thousands of computers and large IT staffs. Some of their small business customers have no IT staff and rely entirely on StoredTech for service.
“To a small company, we can be everything. They have our entire team of 60 people who act as their IT department. That’s something they would never be able to afford. What we have really done is allow small companies to have the big corporate IT department.”
For large companies with extensive IT departments, StoredTech functions in more of a consultant and advisory role. They alert companies to new technologies that may be beneficial to them.
“They have a whole team of IT people, but what they don’t have time to do sometimes is see what is going on outside of their space,” said Shaw.
Shaw started a second company, Tech+Together, in 2018. Through this company, StoredTech resells network and computer management software to other managed service companies.
“We are in the top one percent of managed service providers globally,” he said. “That builds a size and a scale where we are getting really good pricing from our software vendors. We took all that purchasing power and created a community for managed service providers. If you want to buy some of the products I am buying, I will give it to you for a massive discount.”
The company is growing rapidly, and Shaw expects sales to reach $1 million by the end of 2020. Tech+Together currently has 350 managed service providers purchasing software from them.
Shaw expects to expand the Raleigh StoredTech office in the near future, he said, but has no plans to leave Queensbury. He does anticipate expanding into other states.
“We’re committed to the region. We will continue to build out locations in other states like we did in North Carolina. North Carolina wont’ be the last. But for the foreseeable future, we are going to be rooted in the Queensbury area,” he said.