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WBJ 2018 Best of Business

Best of Business: Cinch IT fixes problems before they start

January 8, 2018
Jack Wilson, Cinch IT sales manager

According to Rick Porter, responding to a client only when something needs fixing is not at all a recipe for success in the information technology business.

"When they call, they're frustrated and angry," Porter said. "They're going to have more issues that may take longer to resolve."

Porter, the president of Worcester IT firm Cinch IT, said the company was founded on the relationships with its clients. Rather than sticking a bandaid on problems as they arise, Porter and his team strive to form synergistic relationships with their clients.

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"Even if there are no issues, we just walk around and make sure we get facetime with everybody," he said.

The company's prices are fixed and their services are all-inclusive, meaning each client gets the same amount of facetime with Porter's staff regardless of the client's technology woes.

"We have the same goals," Porter said. "We want to have a fixed, dependable price to budget for and staff accordingly."

That habit of cultivating sound working relationships with clients has resulted in fewer helpdesk calls. When calls do come in, there's no frustration or disgruntlement.

"We've had people call and ask if the helpdesk guy's baby was born," Porter said. "That's the only reason they called."

The company, founded in 2004, has grown from a one-person firm to a 24-employee business and an average rate of growth of 30 percent.

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Cinch IT has grown its revenue from less than $100,000 to a projected $2 million for 2017, Porter said.

That growth has culminated in the recent $680,000 purchase of a 12,000-square-foot headquarters on West Mountain Street in Worcester. It's a major expansion of the company's former 2,500-square-foot office on West Boylston Street.

"We couldn't fit any more desks in there," Porter said.

Angela Rocheleau, vice president of Associate Home Care in Worcester, has been a client of Porters for nearly a decade.

Admittedly, Rocheleau is not the most computer-savvy person, but the burden of maintaining her company's servers and network is met completely by Porter's staff.

A Cinch IT employee has been at the reception desk explaining the phone changes after acquisitions and mergers, including earlier this year when there were problems with the phone system after a merger.

"They were really patient about showing up and talking you through it," Rocheleau said.

Technology problems can make a company – especially in a vital industry like home health care – crumble. However, Cinch IT keeps their cool in times of crisis.

"[Porter] really invests in his customers and helps them as much as they can," Rocheleau said.