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Company works to help businesses make the most of their technology

SHERRY KARABIN
Legal News Reporter

Published: November 21, 2013

From websites and internal email to file management systems and the cloud, most companies employ some type of technology, but not all of these businesses are making the most of the programs purchased.

It’s that goal that northeast Ohio natives Lowell Messner and Jeff Welch said Richfield, Ohio-based ProSource Solutions is designed to fulfill, helping businesses realize an even greater return on their software and hardware investments by using technology to solve problems and convert opportunities.

“Our main role is to align customers’ business problems with solutions and achieve business goals with greater ease and efficiency. We heavily utilize the Microsoft technology platform which is a foundation of global business,” said Executive Vice President and Managing Director Jeff Welch.

Located at 4199 Kinross Lakes Pkwy. in Richfield, the company dates back to 2003 when Welch started the business based on the idea of leveraging the Microsoft platform. In 2005 the company merged with another firm but kept the ProSource brand. Then in 2009 Lowell Messner joined the firm as a partner and the two decided to go it alone, and they’ve been growing ever since.

“In 2009 we were a $2.5 million company,” said Welch. “We doubled in size in 2010 and have enjoyed double digit growth since then.”

Welch, who holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from The Ohio State University, handles sales, business partner relations and recruiting for the company. Messner received his bachelor’s degree in business management from Malone University in Canton and serves as president and chief executive officer of the company, driving solution sales, overseeing and fostering the Microsoft partnership and guiding the overall direction of the company.

ProSource Solutions has grown from 10 people to over 50 full-time employees and about 40 additional subcontractors, and has offices in Richfield and Atlanta.

In September 2012, Brennan, Manna & Diamond Partner Mark Krohn, joined ProSource Solutions as chief operating officer.

“This company does what every great company should do,” said Krohn. “We make good companies great by helping them drive profitability and efficiency and solve their core business problems.

“Our job is to find out where the pain is, determine what the objectives are, evaluate the existing technological infrastructure and figure out how to help the company use what they already have to get to the next level or perhaps help them find additional new technology to drive their business,” said Krohn.

In order to stay on top of its game, the owners of ProSource Solutions partner with other businesses that have expertise in certain niche areas. For example, they recently signed a joint venture agreement with Cleveland-based Certified Security Solutions (CSS), which focuses on data security and protocols and cloud services among other things.

“Companies have traditionally spent a lot of money building data centers,” said Krohn. “The cloud offers the same opportunity for data storage with much lower costs and much greater efficiency. Certified Security Solutions has incredible expertise in this area and this is just another service that we offer our clients.”

“We will leverage Certified Security Solutions for security and they will rely on us for work with technologies like SharePoint, Exchange, Lync, SQL, .NET and System Center,” said Welch.

ProSource Solutions is a member of the Microsoft Premier Partner Network, and in 2011 it received Microsoft’s U.S. Top Services Partner award during Microsoft’s Annual Worldwide Partner Conference. Since then ProSource Solutions has received U.S. Commercial Services Partner of the Year in 2012 and 2013, making it the only three-time award recipient in Microsoft’s history.

In addition, ProSource Solutions has won Akron-based Cascade Capital Corporation’s (provides direct financial assistance to small companies that are expected to grow) “Growth Award” in 2012 and the “Excellence in Business Award” from the Greater Akron Chamber in 2013.

In recent years ProSource Solutions has worked with a number of well-known clients in northeast Ohio of all sizes, like the GPD Group, which specializes in architectural and engineering design, construction, wireless systems, telecommunications and environmental services.

For several years, the company has worked with the certified public accountant and strategic business advisor firm, Apple Growth Partners on various computer network related matters. In the spring of 2013, it helped Apple Growth Partners transition from an on-premise Microsoft Exchange 2003 mail system to the Microsoft Office 365 Cloud solution.

“Essentially what they did was take everything that was on our servers related to Microsoft Messaging and put it on the Cloud,” said Randy Misch, principal and managing director of the Cleveland office for Apple Growth Partners. “They freed up our server space, making more room for other applications.

“This was a more economical option for us, which gave us more control over our mailboxes and allowed us to put our resources into our people and processes versus upgrading our servers on a continuous basis.”

ProSource Solutions also works with several of northeast Ohio’s most recognized law firms as well as the Summit County Court of Common Pleas. In the spring of 2013, it spent three months designing, developing, implementing and offering support services for the court’s new website.

“I had used some of Jeff’s engineers when they were working at different companies over the years, which is how I met him and became familiar with ProSource,” said Jay Chapman, director of information technology at the Summit County Court of Common Pleas.

“It is impossible for us to staff an operation this small with enough expertise to cover all our needs, which is where they have come in.”

Chapman said this time he contacted ProSource Solutions after some of the judges had inquired about upgrading the old website.

“I think our website is now a lot more approachable and easier to navigate,” Chapman said. “Tools have been added to allow IT staff to edit the content and keep it more current. We have ten courts and can tailor each judge’s section to their needs, including day-to-day pertinent topics.”

Welch said ProSource Solutions has recently undergone a tremendous transformation, putting the infrastructure in place to position it for future growth.

“We want to continue to provide our clients top notch quality that allows them to maximize their returns on their technology investments,” said Welch.

“We are committed to remaining a key employer in Akron, which has proven to be a progressive city.”


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