Age Quod Agis motto gives courage to Vertis Technology Jamaican company making waves across the Caribbean and Europe

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In 2013 Ryan Sterling left his previous organisation to branch out and follow his dreams. He wanted not just to work, but to make an impact in the space he was in — and the job he had wasn’t giving him the opportunity to do so.

“I wanted to start an organisation where each individual could feel like they were making an impact or change in the space which that organisation was a part of,” Sterling said.

After watching an episode of Bloomberg Technology, where a service provider was showing how their partnership had really grown their business and how technology really created an impact on both their internal users and their external users with their systems, Ryan got inspired.

“I thought, wow, I could definitely use my knowledge in information and technology and customer service, partner with persons smarter than I am, and really start something great” he says.

That was three years ago. Today Vertis Technology Solutions Ltd is an IT service organisation with 10 full-time team members and more than 30 consultants offering services both locally and in various countries in the Caribbean and Europe.

“We offer innovative IT as a service solutions, including Cybersecurity, datacenter cloud, managed services, IT staffing and application development.”

“We’re based in Kingston, Jamaica, but also offer regional services in countries such as St Lucia, Barbados, Trinidad and Europe. However, our focus is here, as we believe that Jamaica can really benefit from the latest technology that we can offer to them”.

“For us, customer service is paramount.”

For Ryan, his business has managed to grow thanks to the right attitude, focus on the customer and on delivering great services. “Whatever we are doing, it’s a win-win relationship. So the customer will definitely know that their interaction with us is a rewarding one. And that is how we have grown actually.”

“We try not to focus on what other companies are doing, even though we are aware of what is out there. What we try to do is challenge ourselves to offer great services and solutions that really can make a positive impact on the customers we interact with.

“We ensure that we are listening to our customers, finding out why they need these services or solutions and working from there to see how best we can meet them. We ensure that we recruit the best — the best thinkers and doers in technology, and ensure that we constantly give them the tools that they can engage the customers and know the customers’ business. We do our research that makes them innovative and competitive not only here but regionally as well.

“We’re not really looking to win the business of a customer, but more to build a relationship with the customer.”

 

TAKING COURAGE

“The name Vertis is actually Latin for courage. I’ve always been a fan of Latin, since my days at Wolmer’s Boys’ School. The motto says, Age Quod Agis — “Whatever you do, do it to the best of your ability”, and as a proud Wolmerian, I definitely use that as my mantra as well. So I guess in some way, Wolmer’s is also a part of my business story. It influenced the name.”

Since their opening Vertis has partnered with a leading manufacturing company to transform their IT helpdesk and to improve their service level agreement across their five Caribbean locations.

They also partnered with a leading credit union to transform their legacy infrastructure to a digital infrastructure. With another client, they developed an e-commerce site for local retail companies, increasing their sales not only in Jamaica, but in the Caribbean.

For Ryan, the size of the company doesn’t matter, but the motivation and desire to succeed and satisfy the customers.does.

“Our organisation is lean and small, but we do have a get consultancy base. We have the highest certifications that IT has to offer. A great mix of experience, expertise and youth. We believe that is a winning blend.”

Ryan works alongside his wife Camille and has a young son. He admits that it was challenging in the beginning, but they found a way to make it work.

“She was apprehensive at first…we both were. But we knew that once we worked together we could achieve anything.

“The first two years (of the business), were extremely rough, but when she came over in mid-2016, fully, that’s when a lot of the processes began to streamline operationally and when the business began to pick up… and that’s something I value her being a part of… for growing the business in that way.

“For a while, she was the main breadwinner. But she was also in the background of the business working on the marketing and administration etc, doing a lot of the heavy lifting while I was out finding clients.

With regards to the decision to leave his job. “My wife was supportive, she knew I wasn’t happy where I was. It was not something that surprised her. But she told me she believed in me and knew I could do anything I put my mind to. And I knew I could do anything I put my mind to.

“It definitely took courage for me to step out. I didn’t have anything in my bank account and Camille had to now become the main breadwinner. We moved from two incomes to one, even though our expenses were still dependent on two incomes, But that being said, now we are blessed to be where we are as it relates to the business, and we are moving in the right direction steadily and have great team members.

“For us, our courage and hard work have paid off.”

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