New Information Technology Consulting Business
Hi, my wife and I have been coming to St Croix for about 5 years now, and own a Condo at club St Croix. This is the 5th year of a five year plan to move to the island. While I have applied to appropriate posted IT positions, either not being a permanent resident, or lower pay prevented winning any of the spots.
We decided to move down anyway in April, and try expanding my business on the island while I leave a competent behind to deal with stateside business. So I have a couple of question. First, my business deals with providing service to both businesses and homeowners. From a business perspective, I would deal with support of IT equipment, software, networks, servers, telephone, and custom software and database development. From a home owners perspective, I would deal more with slow and unresponsive PCs, device issues, home networks, and software issues.
1) I intend to spend a good deal on advertising starting about the 2nd week of April. What are the best medias to reach businesses, and the best medias to reach homeowners that may be looking for my services?
2) Is there an opinion on other IT Support providers on the island?
3) We will try to keep our condo as a rental property, what are the best sources to locate local decent reasonable housing?
1 A good way to reach businesses may be to call or go by and talk to other IT providers. They usually are being pulled 3 different ways and cannot provide the inhouse type service that some businesses want. Talk to the people that creat the websites for clients, they also may know who needs IT help.
2. In my opinion we need more and for business we need IT thats not going to charge outlandish prices.
3. The best way to find a low cost apt is to be here. The classifeds here have some, but really the best place is the local newspaper, the Avis, you will find a much larger selection that way. Word of mouth is a close second, so talk to people when you're here and go out for dinner and drinks and are site seeing. Rent your own place or a cheap motel for a week and you should find something easily. But you really want to be here, to see what you're thinking about renting and no one is going to hold something for you without payment. At least you know the island and probably where you want to be. Especially when landlords ask for first, last and deposit.
One of the business I do the books for uses a local company that routinely charges him $600 or $700 dollars every time he comes out to tweak anything. He keeps putting passwords on the computers and the servers, even though the owner keeps asking him to remove them, because no one knows what they are. We don't have any idea what they are and to get him to come over you have to call him twenty times. Or he'll remotely access the computer and fix the problem and we still get a huge bill. I have no idea why they use him, my client knows my opinion but its not my money.
Thats what I consider outlandish. 🙂 I mean I always thought the normal range was $60 to $120 an hour depending on what your doing.
I agree with your assessment. State support prices do range from about $75 to $150 depending on what task is being accomplished. Custom development runs significantly higher. I thought I would have to drop my rates based on the published island salary figures for the industry.
All I can say about the extreme routine charges you mentioned is there may still be pirates on the island, and they keep the treasure locked up (password) so no one gets access. This is not right. Maybe there is a place for an experienced IT guy like me. My niche could be integrity and responsiveness.
We'll see how things go in April.