Network Configurations (NETCONFIG) is 20 years old this year. The company has developed a unique and holistic approach to IT management for businesses that understand the true value of an efficiently maintained and supported IT system. NETCONFIG’s strengths include an extremely high level of technical expertise, innovation, research and development.
NETCONFIG began in 1999 during the Y2k bubble burst when many information technology companies were floundering, and the world thought computers where going to crash globally. Iain Emerson, founder and managing director of NETCONFIG was caught up in the bubble, operating a small branch office of a Gauteng based company that liquidated, resulting in him making a decision, find other job or start a business!
The company started in Iain’s sister’s rented house as a “One Man Band” and used the assistance of a friend when needed. After moving to his own house and operating from home, it was not practical to have staff inside the house. So a cottage was built for the business to operate from. The NETCONFIG helpdesk system was a simple exercise book, and eventually the office got too small as Suppliers were sitting on computer boxes in the garden. Machines were built at night with family members’ helping out. Growth happened, business boomed, their next move was to Surrey Park and finally to their new home at 28 Essex Terrace in 2015, which now houses over 70 dedicated employees.
Iain is an active and forward-thinking leader who passionate about providing efficiently maintained IT support and services.
Erica Floweday joined the team in 2003 becoming Operations Director – converting boxes into chairs implementing sound business systems. In 2016, Wayne Erradu was appointed as technical director to mentor the technical team and fulfil the technology goals of the business. Explains Wayne about his journey NETCONFIG, “I joined the team in 2012 as the junior the senior team. The work kept on coming and I kept learning. I loved it and enjoyed every minute of making difference to our customers. My colleagues moved on rose up the ranks to take on bigger projects.”
NETCONFIG currently employs over 70 remarkable people and growing. The average employee age is 24 years old, with a mix of both experience and junior staff members. The company is agile and flexible to its customers by ensuring that all its employees are certified and experienced in the technologies provided. “We started an internship programme in 2017, which aims to skill these individuals and to get them employable in the IT industry. As KwaZulu-Natal has limited IT skills, we decided to be part of the solution by creating an avenue for these young and talented individuals to go out and conquer the world. NETCONFIG is a platform for their own personal success and wellbeing and therefore we are able to contribute to their goals and dreams.”
NETCONFIG has an ongoing programme of instilling the company’s culture and values in employees. Consequently, the company is producing employees of the highest integrity, moral standards and ethics. The NETCONFIG culture itself begins during the employment process. From inception of employment all employees are inculcated with the values of making a difference to the world.
NETCONFIG’s main approach has always been, look after the customer and the customer will look after the business. “We pride ourselves on the relationships we have created with our customers. Through their support of our vision to become the best technology service provider in KZN, they have made us what we are today,” says Iain. NETCONFIG supports approximately 195 clients ranging from 10 to 250 end users. These clients’ industries range from insurance, clearing and forwarding to logistics and legal services. “We enable these businesses to succeed by leveraging technology. Our goal is to allow our clients businesses to grow so that we can grow with them. Every day, the systems we design and implement allow them to work efficiently so that they can focus on the business of entrepreneurship and ultimately getting their goods and services to market within KwaZulu-Natal and the world.”
The company is an early adopter of the latest technology and therefore can always ensure that customers are at the technology forefront. Amongst the client base are businesses who have also been recognised as the best in their industries by using technology as their competitive advantage. We have retained some customers for over 15 years and continue to evolve with them as their technology needs change. Their loyalty to us and continued support is evidenced by their continued partnership with us as their preferred technology provider.
NETCONFIG’s reputation as a business that provides the right solution for its customers speaks for itself. Many of their customers trust the company to continuously upgrade and maintain their systems with many being repeat and ad hoc business partners as part of the customer base. NETCONFIG has been recognised by as a leading provider winning the Microsoft/Westcon Partner of the year award in 2018.
“We have been recognised by Microsoft as a Gold Partner in four competencies. This is an achievement in itself, as recognition by Microsoft as a leader in our field of expertise through achieving these competencies is not easy,” says Erica. “We are the only one of two SonicWall Gold partners in KZN and have partnered with SonicWall for over 15 years as our IT security solution of choice for businesses”.
“We have managed to wade through 20 years of business in the ICT sector, which is dynamic and at times volatile. We therefore aim to be a 100 year plus business and to evolve as technology evolves around us. We pride ourselves on being able to build robust and stable systems and solutions that stand the test of time,” concluded Iain.