Specialists amongst each other | Stepco

Lex van Heezik
Managing Director

"Open communication is one of BIT's strengths. All technology can fail, the IT is no exception. Question is how you handle it. Just like us, BIT reports it on their website when something breaks down."

Stepco takes care of the ICT. Stepco facilitates full work environments over an internet based infrastructure with the MijnASP trade mark. We have national and international organisations, usually with multiple offices, that want to focus on their own corporate processes.

"Many of the clients that come to us, are done with IT. They are tired of managing PCs, server parks, networks, routers, switches, firewalls, IP, telephony and all other necessary business applications. We take responsibility for the entire infrastructure. The client does not need to buy a server any more, does not need to maintain a network. He only needs to know his own business processes and tell us what they expect from us. Functionally, not in technical terms. We gather the necessary bits of information to create a fitting solution.

The art is in the thinking from the whiteboard. The client thinks from what he knows and from what is already there. But when I ask what they really want to achieve, I usually hear a completely different story. We connect technology to that. That all sounds very ingenious, but it really is a matter of listening and knowing the possibilities. We serve MS Offices or serve a business application there where the client wants to use it, whether that is a terraced house, an office or the Bahamas. Adding an employee, moving a workspace; it is only a matter of a couple of clicks on our portal.

That all depends on a very complex technical environment behind the scenes. That seems to be an area of tension: we are all technologically oriented at Stepco, but offer non-technological solutions. The fact that we know so much about the technology, means that we can explain it to our clients in a simple manner. That is what we have in common with BIT. We speak the same language. They are with us and they think along. They don't walk around in expensive suits, but they are people with knowledge that can clearly communicate how things work and what the possibilities are.

We have a complete datacenter of our own in our establishment in Houten. We also have floorspace at BIT, where we have placed our own racks. That is where we host websites for part of our clientele and where we back up the data from our side. For clients wanting a high availability, we can mirror the applications on the two locations. We still have so many clients that do not fully understand the risks. In the MKB, nine out of ten companies have a server space in a souped up broom closet. If they do have an equipped space, it is usually on a single location. Best case scenario has most data on tapes and, if we're lucky, the tapes are still legible. If their surroundings fail, however, they are not easily restored. We put that up for discussion and come up with scenarios for disaster recovery that actually work.

The special thing about BIT is the knowledge they have, their no-nonsense mentality and the quality they have to offer. BIT is an important supplier for first-rate WAN-infrastructures. We have a direct connection to the BIT network in Ede. Whenever possible, we try to keep our clients on our own network or on BIT's, so we can guarantee quality. I can use the BIT network, for example, to connect to the DE-CIX, the Frankfurt Internet Exchange, to build an international network. We also do business with other parties, because some clients ask us to, so we are able to make a good comparison. We are always glad to work with BIT again."

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We realise that the IT infrastructure is essential to our clients and that is why we set the bar high. Those who want to do their job without worry, need to be able to rely on their partners. For many of our clients, we are not a supplier, but an extension of their organisation.

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