“We are very particular about the people we hire and we have fairly high expectations of their technical and customer interface skills. We have an ability to do the ‘hard stuff’ that other companies perhaps can’t.”
Service delivery manager Richard Currey confirms the challenges for him are around staffing and resources. “New Zealand is a tight labour market.”
Delaney says Designertech has always been about providing quality services across a range of software development, commerce and network services.
“This includes some hosted services such as email filtering.”
Designertech also offers IT operational planning, problem solving and product procurement.
The company was founded in 1994 and originally focused on network consulting. In 1998 it released the first version of a content security package.
Subsequently a suite of related software products were developed and, as the product set grew in popularity, it was re-branded to Marshal Software and transferred to a new company. In 2001 Marshal Software was legally separated from Designertech.
“The MailMarshal success grew out of providing new services to customers. MailMarshal came into existence because a customer had a problem and Designertech wrote some software to solve that problem. Now Marshal has been spun off and sold and we’re continuing on that path of providing a full range of outsourced services to partners,” says Delaney.
Fresh blood has been recruited to the company.
“We’re a bit of a new team at the management level, with the recent appointment of business development manager Girish Anantharaman and I’m relatively new to the chief executive role as I’ve only been in the position for three months.”
Designertech has a board of five including Delaney. Three directors, Sean Dick, Peter Hodges and Alan Wilkinson, are from the original team of five who set up the company.
“There’s been a very strong continuity right throughout the whole time the company has been in business. The directors have a strong history of understanding how the company works and they’re still closely involved in the day to day operations,” says Delaney
Designertech has 25 staff and this includes software developers, network engineers together with sales people and admin staff.
Business development manager Girish Anantharaman says during his 14-years of IT experience both in India and locally, he has found speed to be of the essence.
“By speed what I mean is time to market, time to service and respond to your customers. All these things can be provided by the IT solutions that we offer our customers. We truly believe in what we are trying to offer our customers, which is ‘IT that works for you – no excuses’. What we mean by that is IT which shows results.”
Designertech has formed strong partnerships with Microsoft as a Gold partner, IBM as a tier-one reseller and with Symantec.
Anantharaman says the company has received awards from Microsoft and IBM for the innovation of the solutions it offers customers.
Delaney says the company has a good relationship with logistics company Mainfreight.
“We’ve done a lot of work with Mainfreight in the software development space. A big company like Mainfreight has a sizeable team, so we have provided them with some specialist skills for their business requirements.”
Turning to the future, Delaney says there is a shift going on in the industry around how customers perceive the value of IT.
“Historically many customers have seen IT as a cost that needs to be minimised, but now we see customers understand that there really isn’t such a thing as an IT project or requirement – it’s all business requirements with an IT enablement underpinning it.
“We are seeing a lot more customers willing to pay good money to have high reliability in their IT. We’re hoping to ride that shift by providing demonstrable value, [though] not necessarily at the cheapest price.”