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Rochester Top 100: Owners see happy employees as key at firm

Rochester Business Journal
April 8, 2016

Henrietta-based technology firm Systems Management Planning Inc. has been thriving, with its revenue growing more than 30 percent and its workforce climbing by nearly 20 percent last year.

The company was founded in 1997 by the husband and wife team of Eric and Kristin Rorapaugh. Kristin serves as CEO and Eric is the president. It is a certified woman-owned business enterprise in New York.

Eric Rorapaugh attributes much of SMP’s success and continued growth to one starting point.

“Our philosophy is simple: If you have happy employees who are eager to come to work each day, they will provide great service to our customers,” he said. “In turn, our customers will be excited to work with us on new projects. That core belief has driven our success for almost 20 years now.”

SMP specializes in providing corporate information technology products and services such as data center management, virtualization and unified communications. It has offices in Albany, near Pittsburgh and Orlando, Fla. Some employees work remotely from their home offices in Virginia and Texas.

“We recruit nationally because of our virtual technology,” Rorapaugh said, noting a good amount of the talent SMP hires is from the Rochester area. Yet finding top talent is one of his largest challenges.

“Technology is constantly evolving, and everyone in the industry is feeling the pressure to find talent with cutting edge technical skills,” he said.

There are currently 95 full-time employees at SMP with technical expertise in fields such as security, mobility and data center management.

Employment has risen steadily from 49 in 2013 to 60 in 2014 and to 75 in 2015.

Rorapaugh predicts more hiring; the company would like to add some 15 employees this year in various technical and client support positions.

SMP serves markets across New York and New England as well as in Pittsburgh.

Expanded business growth looks strong, Rorapaugh feels, and the debut of a new product in January 2015, SMARTcentre, has been adding new customers to the company portfolio every month.

“We’re doing a lot of professional services. Customers wanted 24/7 monitoring and management of their data centers, collaboration technology and end-user computing solutions,” Rorapaugh said. “This gives us the ability to work with customers much closer and frees up their staff to focus on other things.”

Striving to be a partner of choice for customers as well as vendors and suppliers has been another key component of SMP’s success plan. In addition to being named in 2015 to the Rochester Top 100 for the 10th time, the company has been listed consistently on the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies list.

The recognition Rorapaugh is especially proud of is from partner Cisco Systems Inc., a top tier global technology giant.

SMP was recognized last year with a Customer Service Excellence Gold Star Award from Cisco, and last month was honored with the Cisco East Area Enterprise Architecture Networking Partner of the Year award.

The awards demonstrate the significance of SMP’s work, explained Rob Reisig, a partner and account manager with Cisco for 16 years. Reisig works with the SMP team from his Cisco office in Victor, Ontario County.

“The thing about Cisco is there is no one partner that can be all things to all people, but SMP stands out,” Reisig said. “With our collaborative portfolio and the team they have—their experience is evident when you put them in front of a customer.”

Reisig points out there is a symmetry between the SMP and Cisco offerings such as voice, video and instant messaging platforms. The data-unified computing platform is where the relationship really took off.

“We’re coming to market with expectation of it being No. 1 or No. 2 in market share. We’ll take SMP as a partner with us to our customer,” Reisig said.

He especially enjoys the culture at SMP, which he says is similar to that of Cisco.

“I get to know pretty much everybody. If I walk through the door there just about everybody knows who I am,” he said.

That is how the Rorapaughs want it, and Eric said they plan to continue running the business that way.

“Kristin and I started the company with a commitment to hiring great people and providing them an atmosphere where they could excel,” he said.

The Rochester Top 100 program is presented by the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce and KPMG LLP. Launched in 1987, it recognizes the fastest-growing private companies in Greater Rochester. The 2016 Rochester Top 100 event will be held Nov. 2. For more information, go to greaterrochesterchamber.com.

Systems Management  Planning Inc.
Provides IT products and services with experience in all aspects of corporate information technology.
Year Founded:1997
Top executive: Kristin Rorapaugh, CEO
Current employment: 95
2015 ranking: 79
Headquarters: Henrietta
Website: www.smp-corp.com

4/8/2016 (c) 2016 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email service@rbj.net.


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