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Some companies may be Microsoft certified, but Intellinet packs a little more punch with its certifications, claiming gold partner certification in not one, but five areas.

Some companies may be Microsoft certified, but Atlanta-based Intellinet packs a little more punch with its certifications, claiming gold partner certification in not one, but five areas. CEO Frank Bell talks about being an e-business solutions provider, what makes technology services important, and why it’s sometimes good not to get a job at Microsoft.

How did Intellinet get started?

Just over ten years ago, I unsuccessfully pursued an employment opportunity with Microsoft’s Atlanta office. However, I developed a number of relationships with Microsoft employees, and through subsequent involvement with their Consultant Relations Program, I became one of the first Microsoft Certified Professionals in the world.

At the time, the Internet was just beginning to take off in terms of corporations recognizing the business potential of this government-funded network, and it became apparent to me that a company focused on helping businesses get connected to the internet and implement Microsoft’s messaging products would have a strong value proposition. So in early 1994, I started Intellinet with an initial focus on Microsoft’s email product.

Why do you think there’s a need for your services?

Just as organizations have needs for specialists such as attorneys and accountants, I believe ‘technology services’ represents a long-term, attractive business opportunity. With today’s Internet, people can click and order just about any technology product and have it delivered overnight to their home or office. However, the value of that technology purchase is not realized until that product is installed or otherwise put into use.

In business applications of technology, integration can often be quite complex and require substantial planning to implement without affecting precious uptime or customer-facing systems. Often, the value of implementing these new technologies is very high and strategic to the organization. The higher the value of the product being implemented and/or the more dependent the client is on their technology systems, the more value Intellinet brings to the client.

How is the company unique in the marketplace?

We have differentiated ourselves in our first 10 years by becoming the most certified Microsoft Partner in the world. Intellinet is the only single-location Microsoft partner with “gold certification” in 5 areas: Business Intelligence, Enterprise Systems, Collaboration, Security, and Commerce Solutions. In the future, we recognize the need to develop specific vertical industry expertise, so that we can differentiate ourselves by being able to deliver solutions faster, cheaper, and better than our competitors or the alternatives.

What are the largest challenges that you see in providing your service?

Technology is constantly changing, so we must continually develop new skills, product offerings, and business plans to accommodate the dynamic marketplace we operate in. In a services business, people are the way we deliver our business. And people are much more complex than things, and come with their unique challenges. But, I love technology and helping people–both at the macro level of helping our clients solve complex business problems and the micro level of helping individual employees grow, develop, and progress in their careers.

What’s in the works for the future?

Over the course of the next five years, I expect we will need to be much more focused on the results of our services, rather than the time and effort it took us to achieve this result. In fact, there is likely opportunity for clients to pay more for our ability to deliver results faster than via the way we do projects today. This is a challenging and exciting issue for us, and I’m enjoying the challenges and opportunities created by the pursuit of this goal.

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