The future is a technological one, and the evidence is all around us as computers are society’s most vital tools. So many aspects of our lives and businesses rely on the continued function of multiple computers across different networks. To keep these running, Comstar Technologies of West Chester, Pennsylvania has risen to the challenge. Comstar has been navigating the realms of telephony and IT support for thirty years.
Comstar originated as a father-son venture in 1988 with a focus in telephone wiring and private branch exchange (PBX) telephone systems. As technological advances started taking off in the nineties, the company needed to adjust. By 1996, it was further pushing commercial based telephony. At the end of the nineties, the company was getting into voice and data cabling while assessing the key changes needed to serve a world becoming more and more dependent on computers as it entered the new millennium.
“That evolution happened slowly where we would see an opportunity to offer our clients something new or clients would request that we offer them something. So a lot of our added technologies were to fit the request of clients,” said Comstar President Dave Johnson.
The company added layers to the services it offered by adapting itself specifically to client needs. As relationships with clients were formed, it would actively seek out technical problems and look for potential new services. In 2006, Comstar was determined to become an all-inclusive technology provider for its customers.
“At that point, that meant to us infrastructure and telephony,” said Dave. “Being in the technology business, we see quite a bit of change, and you have to be on the forefront of that or your clients aren’t going to need you.”
In the last ten years, Comstar has seen nearly six hundred percent growth and has changed from a family telephone wiring service to a full-fledged IT provider, allowing it to achieve national reach, gain international clients in Canada, South Africa, and China, and open a new branch office just outside Washington, D.C. The company has proven that prioritizing the needs of clients can make a business to flourish.
It offers an array of technological services to help businesses from smaller entrepreneurs to Fortune 500s. Most would consider an IT department to be at the beck and call of those who need to get their computer running. While this is true, it can be so much more, and that is exactly what the company aims to be. A business with a Comstar-provided IT department will get the technical help it needs to keep computers operational as well as a dedicated group of experts to design, test, and deploy new applications specific to that client.
The company is also still in the business of data and cabling. The company provides solutions for new network infrastructure from the physical side of things where it will set up servers, routers, and cabling to email service, storage, and security. In the case of serious losses, it offers backup and data recovery solutions. It also designs and implements the backup process to cover clients in the event of a natural disaster or major system failure.
To keep clients protected, it also provides cybersecurity solutions. As many companies keep sensitive information on servers, it truly pays to have it well protected. Comstar works directly with clients to assess their security needs with a complete audit of security, compliance testing, and risk assessments. Combining these services with cloud storage means the company has indeed built upon itself to become an all-inclusive provider of IT services.
While IT and computer services have taken off, there is still a large portion of the company dedicated to providing clients with the best possible phone systems. Comstar-hosted phone systems mean that clients can use a voice over IP (VoIP) phone system, allowing for continuous updates to the software, professionally-managed security, and a cost reduction as the client will not need to install large systems on site. On top of that, the company also performs audiovisual setups for video conferences, closed-circuit television (CCTV) for on-site security, and even state-of-the-art fire protection to keep clients and their businesses safe.
“Our entire business, to this point, has been modeled on referrals and references. When that is your business model, every solution you offer has to be of the highest quality and the most white-glove approach you can take for the client. Our standards are way higher then what we’re seeing from industry standards or even competitive standards,” said Dave.
As the company continues to navigate the ever-changing world of technology, it will soon be offering remote desktop services for clients to access their computers remotely from limitless locations, or “your computer, anywhere, anytime, anyplace,” as Dave described it.
Being able to access a business computer without the need to transport it offers clients a substantial advantage. Client employees can be twice as mobile and efficient as competitors with a remote desktop service, and going into 2019, this is going to be a big new change.
While success over these past thirty years has flowed Comstar’s way in great measure, it has not forgotten the values on which it was originally founded. The company recognizes that high standards and maintaining the culture on which it thrived in the eighties and nineties are parts of its success and not a relic of its former, much smaller, self.
“We think of that as one of our core successes,” said Dave on maintaining the family business outlook. “We certainly love winning over really large clients. We do that all the time, but being able to do that and keep the culture created from the beginning is something we think of as one of our best successes.”
Comstar has also been recognized numerous times for growth and success in the technological services industry, taking home the Philadelphia Media Network’s ‘Top Workplaces in Philadelphia’ award three times. These are joined by the Philadelphia Business Journal’s ‘Soaring 76’ award, given to the top seventy-six fastest-growing companies in Philadelphia, and the ‘Philadelphia 100’ which is given to the top growing companies by The Entrepreneurs’ Forum of Greater Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Media Network.
By not just accepting change but actively inviting it and finding ways to utilize it, the company has become a model for success. With so many services, clients both local and international, and new services coming soon, the future is looking bright, connected, and computer-savvy for Comstar Technologies.