Matchmaking Made Easy
Helping businesses find the right information-technology solutions is a signature of KAMIND, an IT consulting firm based in Portland, Oregon.
As clients look to streamline operations and costs in today’s business environment, those solutions often are cloud-based. KAMIND, a longtime Microsoft partner, is ready with offerings such as Microsoft Office 365 and Windows Intune.
KAMIND’s goal is to help clients reach theirs. It doesn’t matter whether a client is big or small, or saddled with traditional infrastructure. Led by principals Matt Katzer and Don Crawford, KAMIND consultants tailor cloud-computing solutions to each situation, using myriad options from Microsoft’s toolbox.
Windows Intune is particularly valuable in today’s digital world. The cloud-based management tool allows clients, their IT staff or IT consulting partner to monitor all devices, whether desktop or mobile, on demand and from afar, no matter where those devices may be located.
“So much of the conversation with our customers comes down to security and privacy,” Katzer said. “Microsoft’s cloud offerings are very attractive to businesses. Intune, in particular, has made a big difference for customers.”
Device management and security are crucial components for any business. Windows Intune makes those tasks easier by giving businesses the ability to operate remotely from a web-based console. Whether in an office environment, or from around the world, Windows Intune allows IT staff to thwart malware and virus threats with endpoint protection, plus deploy day-to-day updates and maintenance — all via the cloud.
The ease of use and sensible cost makes economic sense. KAMIND oversees more than 100 clients whose accounts include Windows Intune. They also manage more than 3,800 users within those accounts. KAMIND consultants cite Windows Intune’s nimble aspect, and the speed with which it can be deployed, as one of many strengths.
In fact, KAMIND offers hands-on, one-day Windows Intune training sessions for clients who need a quick, no-fuss device-management solution.
Mid-Valley Women’s Crisis Service, a nonprofit based in Salem, Oregon, is one such client. Mid-Valley’s Sara Brennan recently attended a one-day Windows Intune intensive training session run by KAMIND and says the cloud-based solution has made life much easier for her organization.
“We were really up and going within one day, and really happy at how it was going,” Brennan said.
With only 12 employees, Mid-Valley required a versatile, cost-effective solution. Per Brennan, the organization has no full-time IT employee, but a dedicated volunteer with extensive IT experience helped guide Brennan and her co-workers through the research process.
“We’ve never had a full-time IT person and never had much of an IT budget because of our limited funds,” she said, adding that the research seemed to point to a cloud solution.
Enter KAMIND, whose employees matched Mid-Valley with Office 365 and Windows Intune.
“Matt was able to work with what we had,” Brennan said of Katzer’s recommendation for the non-profit’s resources. “And, that’s been great because it has allowed us to get back to what we know how to do.”
Mid-Valley provides an important resource for victims of domestic and sexual violence in the Salem, Oregon, community. Fiddling with IT problems, while necessary, isn’t the organization’s focus.
“We’re really good with advocacy,” Brennan said. “We’re not really great technologically.”
As such, she is appreciative that KAMIND’s consultants welcomed the involvement of Mid-Valley’s dedicated IT volunteer, saying the synergy helps bolster technological support.
“We just have had two staff members come on board and I was able to get them up and going, and I’m feeling so much more empowered to do something like that,” Brennan said.
Now, six months into both Windows Intune and Microsoft Office 365 usage, Mid-Valley employees are eyeing their next cloud-based step. The non-profit soon will move to a new office, and, while operating happily on cloud basics, the staff looks forward to expanding its Microsoft cloud experience when the time comes.
“I think it has been great for us to see how user friendly it is,” Brennan said of Windows Intune. “I think what is really exciting is we’ve been able to make the most of what we have and make it better.”
And, KAMIND’s guidance provides a sure road map.
“They were so great, and they might not want me to say this, but they were very flexible with how much our volunteer IT guy could do with them,” Brennan said.
In operation since 1998, KAMIND — a Windows Intune Black Belt partner — has long demonstrated the ability to match small- and medium-sized businesses with appropriate cloud services. Doing so provides a valuable asset to companies that might have difficulty navigating the IT-solutions maze alone.
“We are seeing a lot of customers that are now able to retrain their IT staff to focus on their business needs while cloud-based products like Windows Intune and Microsoft Office 365 eliminate so much of the hassle they previously faced,” Katzer said.