AGC would not be able to have the successful events and meetings without our generous partners! As a benefit of our yearly Partner Program, we spotlight some of our member partner companies. To learn more about them, we ask that they complete a list of questions:
Who is Convergence Networks?
Convergence Networks is a service company that provides monthly technology support and consulting solutions to construction companies throughout the Northwest. We pick up the pieces left behind by failing internal IT people or outsourced providers that didn’t do it right. We also collaborate with highly skilled internal IT for larger organizations to offset the costs of infrastructure support staff, so they can focus on business specific application needs like Viewpoint or HeavyBid, etc. Convergence Networks reached a new milestone this year: we’ve crested the 50 employee mark and we provide support to people across 21 states.
What is the overall mission and goals of Convergence Networks?
Our mission is PEOPLE. Yours and ours. To that end, one of the measurable and realistic goals we have set out for ourselves this year that continues to propel us towards that mission is a westside expansion. Our leadership team and ownership have taken the first major step in testing out this expansion strategy by securing a short lease at an office space close by our current office in Milwaukie off Hwy 224. This effort will allow to closely monitor challenges of working remotely with our own team members to insure we can continue to meet other company objectives that focus on the customer experience and company culture. We are not interested in sacrificing either one, as they are key company values and a significant factor in why we’re selected as one of the top 100 places to work in Oregon for several of the past 10 years.
What is the key focus of Convergence this year?
As we are nearing the halfway point in 2018, Convergence has been deeply focused on preparing for the next evolution of our company. Businesses mature, just like a child going into adulthood, and we’re at another inflexion point in our organization. Surpassing the 50-employee mark and revenues keeping pace means that our focus is heavily targeting internal process improvement initiatives. We’re on track to complete several new initiatives that will impact both our employees and our clients in a great way. To do this, it required key leadership team members to be creative and leverage our Business Intelligence tools in new ways. The outcomes from crunching new data in different ways has helped us target opportunities for quick wins as well as prepare our teams for the next few years of growth and customer acquisition.
Why do you find your relationship with AGC valuable? How does this support Convergence’s key focus?
Our continued growth and success has only been bolstered by our membership with AGC over the years, not only as a member, but also as an event sponsor and educator. Each opportunity we have to connect with and be in front of business leaders who are part of AGC has produced value for our business. As technology changes, each of our clients is impacted in a different way and we have over 150 clients, several that are also members of AGC. That’s a lot of potential scenarios to consider. We find our membership with AGC allows us to see the unique scenarios impacting the construction and development industry leaders throughout Oregon. We utilize the member conversations and shared business scenarios to adapt our own experiences and tools to better serve those needs.
What key project do you think AGC members would be most interested in?
A key solution we adopted at Convergence this year came directly from our experience with an AGC member company. They were phished by a “bad guy”’ who had taken over their email system and was spamming their clients with new wire transfer instructions for project down payment. There are a lot of ways the “bad guy” could have gotten the user name and password information, but we realized that one key area we didn’t have a lot of visibility in was the dark web and what’s being posted for sale through those sites. Our owner found a solution to help us monitor that, not only for ourselves, but also on behalf of clients who are concerned and need quick alerts when an employee’s information is compromised and posted for sale on the dark web.
If someone was to take away one important fact about Convergence, what would you want it to be?
What Convergence Networks is doing as a security first focused technology services provider is different than many, if not most, of the other companies out there. We are firm believers that information security risks are the number one threat to a small business and owners. We see it week in and week out, compromise after compromise. If there is one thing we can’t stress enough it is information security training with your employees. It is absolutely critical to have a strong information security posture and plan for any small business; that also goes for your vendors. If you’re in business to make money, then the bad guys want what you have…and there are more and more ways they are trying to take it from you. And they don’t mind a few thousand at a time because that adds up quickly. None of us want our organization’s name plastered across the front page of the paper or on the news over a breach.