We did it for them. We can do it for you.
We were manually completing many tasks that should have been automated, and drastically needed to improve efficiency. What immediately impressed us was Laura’s willingness to fit in where needed and customize services for our organization. While our initial goal was to improve efficiency, bigger issues with data integrity and system overload were identified.
The level of communication was outstanding. As an expert guiding the process, Laura helped us see past the vendor sales pitches and understand the value of each product offering. Laura also helped our staff see things from a holistic perspective instead of just honing in on feature requests that would only benefit their department. She was also invaluable in garnering buy-in from the board committee that was overseeing this project.
We had an outdated IT infrastructure and a number of different pieces of equipment that were bolt-on and bandaged solutions. We were about to make a significant transformation in our business model and knew our existing IT couldn’t support that. That’s when we turned to OPT Solutions.
OPT performed a thorough IT Evaluation, examining our people, processes, risks, opportunities, existing policies and procedures, hardware and software. OPT spent a lot of time talking to our people and uncovering numerous issues.
OPT provided a solid recommendation on our IT strategy and investment, and then we brought on Wayne from OPT as Fractional CIO. He participated in staff meetings with our key management team, and was on site 1-2 days a week helping us formulate our IT direction. He also helped us make key IT personnel decisions, including the recruitment of our new IT Manager, who was brought on during the selection process of a new ERP system. OPT Solutions was able to supplement her knowledge and experience with a broader range of recommendations. After a thorough vetting process, we are certain that we got the absolute best system for us. We couldn’t have done that alone.
Through it all — IT Evaluation, Fractional CIO, new hires, and ERP selection — the most important thing was getting the scope and strategy right. OPT Solutions delivered.
Our first software reimplementation a decade ago wasn’t quite right. This time around, we wanted to be sure we didn’t make the same mistakes. We sought to partner with an organization that had been through dozens of implementations and could guide us in the right direction.
Other vendors appeared to be “part-time” in this business, while OPT Solutions definitely seemed like experts. It was especially clear after meeting with Laura and Kurt that they are sharp people and know their stuff.
Kurt mapped out a thorough plan for us. He walked us through the stages and helped us achieve goals — including prodding us as necessary to make us work faster and stay true to our time horizons.
OPT knows technology, but also knows process. When our software provider was going in a direction that wasn’t in our best interest, OPT was very proactive in advocating for us and ensuring that the provider stayed on point with our mission. Not only did they keep us on the straight and narrow, they demanded the same from our vendors. OPT knew what we were looking for, and was able to articulate that to our software provider when we could not.
We also appreciate the patience shown by Kurt and OPT in explaining technical matters to non-tech staff. We are very satisfied with OPT Solutions and would highly recommend them.
We were referred to Laura and OPT Solutions by a trusted advisor. At the time, everything IT related was outdated and held together with gum and paper clips. We needed a new EMR, and I realized our current IT staff couldn’t support it.
What I immediately liked about OPT Solutions was that there was no long-term commitment. OPT consultants were able to identify issues from a high level and provide unbiased recommendations — all while remaining sensitive to budget. The software selection process was led in an organized way that allowed us to quickly arrive at the best solution. Laura is also really good at holding vendors accountable. I knew if they got through Laura, we were good to go!
Our engagement with OPT Solutions has completely transformed our IT, including new infrastructure, phone and EMR systems. We evolved from 1990 technology to current standards in 3 years.
Spend 5 minutes with Laura and you’ll automatically be smarter. She has a way of explaining complex technical issues in a way that doesn’t make anyone feel dumb. My own IT knowledge has grown by leaps and bounds and I now have competent conversations with IT staff and vendors. Beyond just IT, I also learned a new way to look at business. From managing people to contract details, my own management expertise has benefited through my relationship with Laura and OPT Solutions.
For a mid-sized company like ours, Laura Rusick of OPT Solutions proved to be an ideal part-time, or fractional, CIO. She did a thorough risk assessment of every aspect of our homegrown IT system, identifying several issues that were enterprise critical. Because she has so many contacts, she was able to orchestrate the right resources and the right talents for every need we had, in terms of both applications and infrastructure. She manages people very well and holds them accountable. When our previous programmer left, Laura was able to find programmers to serve us on a flexible basis, so that we can adjust the hours needed each month.
Working with OPT Solutions also enabled us to develop a terrific business model, where IT became transparent to the whole organization, with structured policies and procedures. This was just a marvelous change in the way we were doing things! Laura also helped us through a rigorous selection process for a new ERP vendor, and we will bring her back to implement that system when we are ready. I have been pleased to recommend OPT Solutions to many other businesses.
I would like to recognize the excellent work of OPT Solutions in assisting Family Promise of Greater Cleveland with our FPForce database development and implementation process. Your ability to conceptualize our needs and facilitate and train our staff was most beneficial and critical to the success of the project. We especially appreciated your systems knowledge and experience, attention to detail, and ability to keep us on track – not easy to do in an environment where everyone wears many hats. I was also very impressed with your grasp of the issues leadership encounters and your expert guidance in overcoming barriers to success.
Laura Rusick and OPT Solutions provided expertise that proved instrumental for us when we were transitioning from one facility to another. She had the required knowledge base to know what needed to happen, and what red flags to watch out for. Cost savings were also identified for phone systems and security services. Using OPT Solutions’ managed services vendor selection process resulted in a successful relationship with our new vendor. I am very pleased with the quality of work that was delivered, enabling us to lay a foundation that would let us grow into it as needed. She still serves in an IT advisory role today.
OPT Solutions worked with our existing system to make changes that streamlined our processes, eliminated a lot of paperwork and helped us create the reports that we needed to monitor the business. Laura acted as the catalyst to suggest changes that we could implement. She is very balanced in her approach, and didn’t try to “sell” us things; she was very focused on our needs. Laura worked well with everyone and was able to bring in specialized talent for certain technical issues. We had a very good experience, and got what we wanted at the budget we had planned. I am pleased to recommend OPT Solutions to others.
As Senior Vice President of Strategy, I was in charge of day one readiness for the Home and Security division of Fortune Brands during a spin-off. My challenge was dealing with weak team players from the original company, which caused me to seek advice from an outside party regarding our IT solutions. After speaking to a large firm, who wanted to do a massive and expensive study, I knew I needed to engage someone who could be responsive to act as a sounding board on what we had in place.
I solicited OPT Solutions to take a look at some of the conclusions the current team had suggested. I was extremely impressed with Laura’s comfort level, general IT expertise and ability to sort through what I felt was quite a daunting task. Laura was quickly able to identify potential issues and dig in to be sure they were adequately covered for day one readiness. She was also able to identify issues that needed to be teed up for system improvements going forward.
Pantek had several high priority projects that, lacking a CIO, were not getting attention. In addition, a target IT architecture had not been developed. OPT Solutions was engaged to provide an interim retained CIO. A target architecture was created based on our growth plans and our need to be more efficient. The new architecture minimizes duplication of customer data and creates those efficiencies. Laura also worked with my team to identify billing and customer service requirements and coordinated a software evaluation.
Laura served as outsourced project manager for our firm, responsible for needs analysis, RFP development, and vendor selection. We achieved outstanding results and would not have done so without her guidance.
Phone system selection project for insurance agency.
After our executive team set aggressive growth plans, we focused on identifying the changes necessary to support that growth. Laura was brought in to make recommendations on our internal and client practices relating to software reselling and implementations. We have already begun implementing recommendations. I am now confident that as our sales increase, we know what needs to occur within the organization to support the growth and continue our culture of customer service excellence.
After several challenges with IT service levels, I decided we needed insight from an outside expert. OPT Solutions interviewed our management team to understand the business strategy and existing issues. Laura and her team identified risks and provided recommendations for revising our IT organizational structure, as well as for changes to processes and technology.
The outside fresh perspective was very helpful and we continued to work with OPT in an advisory capacity.
Laura communicated well with all levels of our organization. She was able to quickly assess and document what was required in order for us to meet our deadlines. Her flexibility and ability to work independently were very helpful at a time when we were all working hard to meet aggressive deadlines.
Assisted controller with the business processes required to in-source financial department. Also advised controller on implementation of POS systems project.
Laura’s engagement was to assess how we might leverage technology to meet corporate growth plans. She and her team did a comprehensive review of our current state, including staffing and processes. She recognized our rapidly changing business conditions. Not only did we accept her recommendations but requested her participation in the implementation as interim CIO.
I have been impressed with how much Laura was able to accomplish. We have a stronger outsourced data center, accomplished on an aggressive timeline and with limited staffing. She set in place a foundation for policies and procedures, including standards within IT. As a result, we now have a much stronger IT environment that can support our projected growth and acquisition strategy.
As a growing company, the differences in approaches and skill levels within our scientific management team was making it more and more difficult for the executive team to prioritize and manage our product development projects. Laura interviewed our executives and managers and customized a training program on project management to our needs.
This program was well received by the participants and is critical to our company’s ability to manage and allocate human resources in order to fulfill our commitments to our partners and our shareholders.
Laura worked on standardizing our client consulting process, including business process flows and project management tools tailored to our core process. She identified ways to make our work more efficient while still allowing for client-specific differences. This process also gave us a jump start on better pricing models. We now find it much easier to communicate the process we will deliver to our clients. Our business this year is up 60%.