Guest Column | May 13, 2019

Reader Spotlight: Steve Diaz, Optiva IT, LLC

A conversation with Steve Diaz, Optiva IT, LLC

Steve Diaz, Optiva IT, LLC

In this Reader Spotlight, Optiva IT, LLC Steve Diaz shares a little about himself, company, and the state of the channel. 

Summarize your background/professional experience.

Diaz: As the CEO of Optiva IT, an IT services and support company in the Inland Empire, I am passionate about solving information technology issues for Southern California businesses and getting optimal results that lead to 99.9 percent uptime.

Since 2006, when I started Optiva IT and assembled a team of certified technicians and engineers, the company has earned an outstanding reputation for being fast, reliable and responsive. We typically respond in 30 minutes or less and can have a technician dispatched within the hour of a call.

What is one interesting/humorous/entertaining fact about you?

Diaz: I was told early on I would not make it in this industry. I had an addiction to alcohol and, in 2007, hit rock bottom and checked myself into rehab in Newport Beach, CA. I have 13 years sober and I turned all my negatives into positives. Through a lot of adversity and pain I have built a reputable, successful MSP company.

What verticals do you serve and what services and technologies do you sell?

Diaz: Voice over IP services, cybersecurity, cloud computing services, managed it services, network security, and end point protection.

What vendor partners do you work with?

Diaz: Microsoft, Sonicwall, Dell, Sophos, Atera, Autotask, Datto, and App River.

What is the best sales opportunity on your 12-to-18-month horizon?

Diaz: We are organically seeing growth in Managed IT services. Businesses are starting to see the value and lean toward a more cost-effective solution.

What threatens that opportunity?

Diaz: We are starting to see many MSP companies emerge with extremely low pricing. that makes no sense.

What could accelerate it?

Diaz: Keep the price right to make sure you're profitable so you can implement the proper systems and security measures.

What is the most difficult aspect of leading an IT service provision company?

Diaz: Technology moves rapidly. You have to make sure as a leader you stay current with new technologies and security measures all while keeping your systems in place fresh to continue to server your customers properly and efficiently. This also includes having the right team in place.

How are you attacking that challenge?

Diaz: Here at Optiva IT, LLC we are super passionate about serving our clients. When you have passion and heart in place you can push and attack through anything.

In the context of running your business, what apps/tools/utilities could you not live without?

Diaz: It's all about having systems in place. We could not run this business properly without measuring the health of every single end point we monitor. We also need to make sure everything is documented so our PSA is absolutely important. I would say our RMM and PSA.

On the flip side of that, what would you be happy to do without?

Diaz: We love all our clients, but I would say our biggest challenge we could live without is getting direct calls without submitting a ticket and bypassing our support line. We are working heavily to eliminate it.