Tech expert Bruce Kerr urges Central Queensland residents to support local businesses.
Tech expert Bruce Kerr urges Central Queensland residents to support local businesses.

BYTE ME: Rebuilding CQ through local business support

Following on from my article last week on all of us looking after Australia more than we have in previous years, this week we take a step further and look at buying local.

Why buy local? The simple answer is to ask yourself – do you like living in Central Queensland, or would you prefer to move to Brisbane, Sydney or Melbourne?

Personally, I love Rockhampton and our surrounding region.

I have visited all three of our biggest cities and while I have enjoyed some holiday time within, the best experience was always to put them in the rear-view mirror and head home.

So how can we best help to maintain our standard of living in Central Queensland? Buy local!

While our biggest cities keep growing each year, our regional towns and cities sometimes struggle to grow at all which is something that we all need to be mindful of.

We need to stop the transition of our goods and services being supplied from our Southern cities and keep this work local whenever we can.

Unfortunately, this trend is also occurring in our IT industry.

I understand that we will have lots of franchise businesses and regional branches that are supported by head offices in the major cities, however we also have many Central Queensland based companies that get all of their IT support from ‘down South’.

I have seen all these scenarios before, and I can promise you that IT support companies from the South have no silver bullets.

We have seen locally based companies paying a fortunate for Southern IT support and in some cases they were not getting looked after at all. Like so many disciplines, regardless of certificates and flashy resumes, the abilities of computer technicians vary widely, and their performance will always be dictated by management.

Again, we have seen techs with incredible resumes not able to get a simple job done right.

We have tried to reverse this trend of getting IT support from outside of Central Queensland as much as possible and as a result we have customers as far away as Brisbane, Townsville and Longreach – even looking after one of the largest accounting firms in Brisbane.

We urge CQ based companies to get a consultation / quote from a local IT firm before blindly signing with Southern IT support companies.

The worst IT support that I have seen was from a Global IT provider that had zero idea about customer service or IT fault finding – that was responsible for a number of different entities and various sites in CQ.

In these cases, several bean counters from different private and semi-government entities had signed a 3-year contract with this Global IT provider who then subbed the work out to us.

With the above, we often found ourselves on site knowing exactly what was wrong and relaying this info to the Global IT company – but getting told to do literally hours of other useless fault finding.

In one instance an entire site was down for 3 days when the actual fix was a 30-minute job that we were not allowed to touch. 3 days later the 30-minute job was finally done, the customer was again up and running and we quit all ties with the Global IT company.

Just like Australian companies should employ Australian based labour, CQ based businesses should employ CQ based support companies to help maintain our local standard of living.

Future Byte Me topics can be emailed to bytemearticles@kerrsolutions.com.au and Bruce is contactable at Kerr Solutions, 205 Musgrave Street or on 49 222 400.