By Chelsea Pyne
Have you ever imagined opening the door to your office and it is a scene from Jumanji? Vines growing up the walls, puddles covering the floor, all the electronics sparking…or maybe sometimes it just feels like that. Work can easily become chaos after one thing goes wrong–the snowball effect, so to speak. In today’s world, if the internet is down then productivity goes down with it. It is for this exact reason that Solace IT Solutions has been keeping Kernersville on the frontline of information technology for nearly 20 years.
In fact, Solace IT Solutions has been on the forefront of Microsoft technologies. Only a few weeks ago, Solace was part of the unveiling of the newest business management platform–Microsoft 365 Business.
The gears to this pivotal accomplishment started turning decades ago. After serving in the Marine Corps and completing a tour in Iraq, Chris Oakman moved his outpost southeast to the newly budding Triad community. Following his love of computers–and perhaps more importantly, his love of a Carolina girl–Chris set up shop in Greensboro. He began a lucrative career in computer engineering. After years of developing clientele and creative IT solutions, Chris and college classmate Brian Stewart launched Solace IT Solutions. The business, which started as Simple Network Solutions, provided break-fix services for small companies. In 2011, after the release of Microsoft Office 365, Brian and Chris merged with Eastridge Technology to concentrate on Office 365 and develop a Managed Services Practice. When the software development side of Eastridge was sold last year, Chris and Brian, with the addition of Josh Sammons to their team, created “Solace IT Solutions”. Since then, Solace has grown their clientele to support business in the Piedmont and nationwide.
While retaining all their small business clients, Solace now focuses on Managed Services utilizing Microsoft Technologies. Chris explained, “Our relationship with Microsoft, I believe, is what sets us apart. We have been a Microsoft partner since 1998 and a Gold level partner since 2011.” To qualify as a Microsoft Certified Partner, Solace must employ a minimum number of Microsoft Certified Professionals. This means Chris’ employees have a proven level of technical expertise, demonstrated their ability to deliver solutions featuring Microsoft products, and have passed certification exams developed by Microsoft.
On July 10, Chris, Brian and Josh went to Washington D.C. along with client Garner Foods to announce Microsoft 365 Business–Microsoft’s newest cloud offering for small businesses. “This is going to enhance all aspects of growing a small business. It will create more productivity, bring people together, and provide increased security into one package. Especially with all the ransomware viruses lately, this is a much-needed product. Solace is very excited to be one of the few businesses to be part of the release.” In fact, Solace and Garner Foods were part of the main keynote at the convention, held a press conference, and took part in a general session for a thousand other partners announcing Microsoft 365 Business. This is a huge accomplishment for a small Kernersville IT company to be on the forefront of Microsoft technologies. Solace is now able to offer small businesses a solution that saves time and money by combining a simplified user licensing process, mobile device management solution, and tools for security and data loss management into a single portal.
Garner Foods IT Supervisor Brad Everts explained, “With the implementation of Microsoft 365 Business, Garner Foods is able to lower management, hardware, and software licensing costs associated with domain services, productivity, collaboration, update, and security services. Garner Foods’ IT staff is now able to spend more time supporting the business needs of our growing company.”
Solace specializes in streamlining and reorganizing current networks to promote a more user-friendly, and most importantly, stable network that will support each company’s work demands. Since IT jargon is not always easily understood, Chris explained, “For example, a couple of years ago we got a call from a local Kernersville CPA on a Saturday morning. He had gone into his office to discover four inches of water covering his entire office. We reacted immediately and by that afternoon, we had every one of his systems including his phone system up and running in a new temporary office space.” Although it was not the utter–lions in the office–chaos of a Hollywood thriller, it certainly was a huge ordeal. He joked, “This was right in the middle of tax season so having his systems up and running was critical. This was the second time that we had had to do this for a client here in Kernersville. Maybe there is something in the Kernersville water.”
Worry not–Solace will have your back. As an all-encompassing IT solution business, Solace has covered every corner of computer mishaps and solutions. Each team member has brought his own expertise which has enabled Solace to, well…do it all. Brian, Josh, and the ten other employees proactively work to keep Kernersville running smoothly.
Bill Foster of Lewis Systems & Service Co. shared, “Lewis Systems has always relied on Solace for all of our IT requirements. We have been able to achieve high levels of success and growth with the team at Solace on our side. They have a wealth of knowledge and outstanding support. Having exceeded our expectations on every project we have worked on together, we could not ask for a better partner.”
When your IT infrastructure and network are the pulse of business operations, there is no room for data loss, security breaches, or catastrophic loss. Managed Services provides a means to avoid these situations, with quick response times and full support to keep your network running smoothly. Solace proactively manages your critical systems and network devices. Managed Services deliver the most advanced solutions and technology available to small and medium-sized businesses without the expense of an IT staff or hourly rates. Solace IT Solutions is located at 309 Pineview Drive, Kernersville. For more information visit www.solaceits.com or call 336.904.9100.