MSP 501 Profile: Digital Boardwalk’s Triumph over the Great Recession
Company Name: Digital Boardwalk
MSP 501 Rank: 386
CEO: Tim Shoop
Location: Pensacola, FL
In 2007, Digital Boardwalk’s CEO, Tim Shoop, was struggling to keep his eight-year-old IT business, New Vision Computers, above water. The U.S. veteran was a quarter-million dollars in debt and faced a tough decision: Close his doors and walk away from entrepreneurship, or double down in the middle of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.
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Shoop was close to taking the first route. Like many small business owners in the late aughts, he felt like a failure. Then he remembered some wise words from Thomas Edison: “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
Defying his mounting debt and the legions of well-meaning people warning him he was making a mistake, Shoop founded Digital Boardwalk in 2008. The gamble paid off.
“Instead of quitting, I did what a real entrepreneur would do,” remembers Shoop. “I took more risks. I spent more money. I researched. I built something new. I failed more times than I succeeded, but I never stopped trying.
As long as I am here, you will always see something new from me.”
Here, Shoop talks about how Digital Boardwalk has differentiated itself from other MSPs to climb to the top of the industry, where the MSP’s biggest growth areas are for 2019 and the one thing he wishes vendors would do that they don’t.
Channel Futures: In a market that sometimes seems so crowded there’s no elbow room, how does Digital Boardwalk stand out from its competitors?
Tim Shoop: For the first several years of our business we focused our efforts on addressing the primary issues that were plaguing industry including slow response times and poor customer service. As we evolved and created a consistent customer service model, we shifted our focus to faster resolution times. We found that most of our competitors were offering quick response times, yet customers were still complaining about the experience. It turns out that the competition was quick to respond to customer requests but would take days or weeks to solve the problem. After changing our focus, we discovered that customers cared less about the actual response to the request and more about how long it took us to complete it.
We spent close to one year making several significant changes to our company structure that would foster growth, development and teamwork. These changes, among other HR improvements, resulted in an average resolution time of less than two hours. This industry-leading resolution time is not only attracting new clients from our competition but also enticing other MSPs who are unhappy with their current outsourced help desk. What’s more, we have been able to make all these changes without having to …