In a time where lighting fixtures have become commoditized and mass manufactured at the lowest cost, Sternberg Lighting is unique. The Illinois-based company was founded in 1923 as a traditional ironworks and has since transitioned into a premier manufacturer of commercial lighting fixtures. Its high-quality products, used in the municipal, landscape, commercial, and higher education markets, are designed and manufactured at its own offices and factory.
One could say that Sternberg Lighting is a company that knows what it’s good at—and focuses its efforts on doing it even better. That’s why the company partners with BT Partners Managed Services to support its technology infrastructure, freeing it to innovate further and build better products.
"With BT Partners Managed Services, I get to be the visionary and perform my role more effectively. They are the tacticians that make it all happen."
When Ruben A. Moreno joined Sternberg Lighting as its Director of Systems and IT, he found what seemed to him to be a less-than-optimal approach to managing technology. “We were using BT Partners, but in a very limited capacity,” he recalls. “They handled our server maintenance and were the people we called when something went wrong, but Sternberg personnel stepped in to handle most other IT services.”
Moreno moved to realign the company’s priorities surrounding its technology services. “We have a relatively small staff, so to pull people away from their core responsibilities to respond to technical issues and tasks isn’t our best use of resources,” he says. “Not having anyone specifically focused on IT meant that some of our systems were falling out of date, and we weren’t taking advantage of new efficiencies. We wanted to expand our scope of managed services to help us modernize, maintain, and improve our technology.”
Without BT Partners, Moreno estimates that the company would need to hire at least one full-time help desk employee plus a technician to handle server and infrastructure maintenance. “That would be bare minimum,” he says. “It’s accurate to say that the salaries would be much more than we pay BT Partners.”
Sternberg Lighting elected to have BT Partners Managed Services group provide full help desk services, making BT Partners the staff’s single point of contact for every IT issue.
“They triage the calls and either resolve them or route them to the responsible vendor,” Moreno explains. “For example, they don’t support our ERP application, but when an ERP call comes in, they know who to contact. Consolidating our help desk with BT Partners has eliminated confusion about who to call and minimized bottlenecks in the process. They track and share topics and resolution response times with us so we have full transparency and can better identify areas where employee training or new equipment could be beneficial.”
Outsourcing technology services to an MSP ensures Sternberg Lighting’s teams get the answers and support they need, and helps management focus its attention on the core business.
“I want my role to be that of a strategist,” Moreno says. “I need to be continually looking for ways we can leverage technology to be better at what we do and optimize the strengths and resources we have. Configuring new workstations and troubleshooting printer problems is important—but it’s tactical, not strategic. BT Partners is our tactical partner—they get things done.”
Moreno is quick to note, though, that BT Partners does provide valuable strategic guidance to the company as well. “I meet with their team monthly to discuss what’s working, what we can do better, and what new technology is out there that can help us meet our goals.”
Sternberg Lighting had options when it went looking for a Managed Services Provider (MSP), so what made the company select BT Partners? Moreno sums it up, “We did consider other providers, but we selected and continue to choose BT Partners because they offer an exceptional level of service at a fair price. They continue to prove themselves to us year after year—I can’t say enough.”
Sternberg Lighting has proven that focusing on your core mission can lead to a century of success. Moreno says he feels that BT Partners gives him the luxury of maintaining that same focus. “With BT Partners Managed Services, I get to be the visionary and perform my role more effectively and creatively—and that’s good for business.”