“I realized at day one that knowledge truly is power in this industry.”
Throughout talking with Mike, we very quickly learned a couple of things about him. The first is that he has a wealth of experience surrounding the telecom industry.
The second is that he is completely honest and transparent about himself and his business goals. When asked why he started SimpleTek, his immediate response was to laugh and state, “Sheer insanity.”
Mike continued by elaborating on his time working for large telecom companies. He stated, “We were taught to size up what somebody knew. The less they knew, the more we were supposed to take advantage of them. I realized at day one that knowledge truly is power in this industry.”
Conversely, Mike stated that he wants to be a “trusted resource” for his partners and customers, making sure they have the necessary knowledge to avoid being taken advantage of.
“There’s a philosophy we have which is that the bills tell all – and they do.”
Indeed, one of the goals of the SimpleTek Software is providing partners with access to information they need to best serve their customers. He stated, “It goes back to ‘Don’t tell anybody your secrets,’ because that’s where your power is. Our approach is, ‘I’ll tell you anything. I will be honest with you, I’ve got a wealth of knowledge. I’ll give you everything I’ve got.’”
SimpleTek’s approach to the SME/SMB Channel is centered around the notion of transparency. Mike explained that SimpleTek’s proprietary technology platform focuses on money and expenses. He stated, “There’s a philosophy we have which is that the bills tell all – and they do.”
To examine a company’s phone/communications bills, SimpleTek or its partners utilize what Mike describes as a two-phase audit. During the first phase, partners perform a “scrub”. The scrub gives customers a snapshot of their business processes, telling them everything from the current state of their technology to whether-or-not their pricing is in line. Mike states that partners can do so simply from one month’s worth of the customer’s bills.
Once a customer signs on through SimpleTek’s channel partners, they begin the onboarding process and the second phase – a 7-Step, detailed audit performed by SimpleTek or the channel partner. This phase gives the customer a complete inventory of what they have and utilizes the SimpleTek Software so that customers, as Mike states, “Never get back to that place they were in before.”
SimpleTek’s methods pay off, too. Mike stated that, since 1989, SimpleTek has averaged 31% savings per client.
Mike went on to describe the SimpleTek software in a nutshell. He stated, “The SimpleTek software is designed to give them [customers] control. At the beginning and end of it, it is a control platform. You can, within seconds, assess every aspect of communications and technology. You can look for the anomalies that need your attention. You can check the status of projects, you can check your expenses and pull any number of reports. You can track all orders and implementation. You’ve got an inventory of all your services and you’ve got all of your vendor information.”
While new to the channel, Mike stated that, in two years, he wants SimpleTek to have 150 new channel partners. Additionally, in that time frame, he hopes to have 500 new customers and add 10 major modules to the SimpleTek software.