A John Deere Dealers Challenge
With exponential growth after a merger and acquisition, LandPro Equipment, a John Deere dealer was faced with a decision on how to handle IT management. Should they scale IT internally or partner with a managed IT service provider?
The Ultimate Decision
The now 20-store and 500 employee dealership first emerged when two, six store dealers joined. When that happened, it was clear that the one IT manager on staff was not sufficient to provide the continuous support that the company required.
The decision to grow internally or outsource fell on the responsibility of Ryan Payment, Vice President and CFO. He recalled, “One [IT manager] wasn’t going to cut it because we needed support after hours and on weekends. When the farmers are busy, we’re busy. So, we had to make a decision about whether we’re going to scale up internally or look to an outside partner.”
After evaluating different providers, LandPro chose to outsource the day-to-day IT tasks to Brite.
“When we first partnered with Brite, it was primarily to handle that day-to-day responsibility. The help desk situations, resetting passwords, downloading programs and helping with email, things like that,” Payment recalled.
The evolution of ongoing IT support
Once established as the provider to offload those daily IT tasks, Brite has been able to evolve the suite of proactive managed IT services by adding advanced cybersecurity defenses and business continuity solutions, rounding out a complete IT and security strategy.
“Over time, we’ve expanded our relationship with [Brite]. They’ve been very helpful with our day-to-day security … Their offering is robust. They have pretty much everything you could look for in a provider,” Payment commented.
The strong IT and security foundation set the stage to further expand services to include email security, endpoint protection, patching, Microsoft365 management and user awareness training. These services provide additional coverage and help achieve the defense-in-depth approach businesses need to stay secured against cyberattacks.
Steve Wilmarth, Director of Managed Services commented, “As the relationship continues to grow, the progression enables LandPro to be confident that their environment is clean, protected and prepared in case of a disaster.”
An important factor when partnering with an external partner was the ability to manage a suite of John Deere-specific programs that LandPro utilizes.
“After working together over the past several years, Brite has become very familiar with the variety of John Deere-specific programs, tools that we use every day, ” Payment explained.
By educating Brite on the different programs, settings and permissions are efficiently managed. For example, when a new employee is onboarded, the LandPro team shares the designated role and Brite assigns the necessary programs and permission levels.
Additionally, Brite is prepared and capable of supporting the continuously growing organization. “They’ve been able to grow with us as we’ve grown. We’ve done acquisitions over the years and they’ve easily scaled up,” said Payment. “In the past, if we were doing this internally, we would have to add headcount and now we’re able to grow without doing so because we leave that to Brite.”
From originally looking to offload day-to-day IT tasks and continuing growth in services, the decision to partner with a managed IT provider has been worthwhile for LandPro Equipment.
In closing, Payment said, “Overall, I would say the relationship with Brite has been great. We started with them several years ago and they have been a great partner.”