MicroNet thrives in tough business economy
Tucked in the corner of a modest Nisswa business complex sits one company that has a nationwide reach, even expanding into Canada and Australia. It's the down-to-earth, simple business techniques that make MicroNet successful, says Scott Juranek,...
Tucked in the corner of a modest Nisswa business complex sits one company that has a nationwide reach, even expanding into Canada and Australia.
It's the down-to-earth, simple business techniques that make MicroNet successful, says Scott Juranek, CEO of the company.
MicroNet is best known for products ChamberMaster and MemberZone, products that help organizations with day-to-day operations and management tools that keep operations running smooth.
But inside the walls of the company is the secret to success: The people.
A happy crew reflects that on customers, says Juranek.
More than 50 people work for MicroNet. That's doubled in the last three years as demand grew for technology, sales and customer service.
The company has seen a lot of expansion in the last few years. First, moving from Brainerd/Baxter into its current location. Then, into the bait shop next door when the business shut its doors.
Customer service is what the business prides itself on.
Customers are given one service representative to be the go-to person should they need help.
"In our business, support is important," Juranek said.
There are no contracts with MicroNet. Instead, the company must "earn the business every month," Juranek said.
It's the happy customers who refer MicroNet to others. That expands the reach even more.
"Our customers network with each other. They are in the same field," he said.
If a customer wants a service that the current software doesn't offer, MicroNet IT workers will set out to make it happen, if at all possible.
Happy customers translate back into a happy work environment.
Culture among the employees is high, as a volunteer group puts on events to keep spirits up. For example, a mini golf course set up throughout the office one day, and a potato bar set up another time.
Employees have the freedom to come to work on schedule that works for them, whether it be 7 a.m. or 10 a.m., or even work from home some days.
It's a relaxed work environment, with a hearty chuckle echoing through the halls every now and then.
When the company expanded upstairs, it built showers in the bathrooms to accommodate employees who bike to work.
It also encourages people to work out, Juranek said.
Looking forward, company leaders see growth.
The company started out with a product that has almost created an identity for it - ChamberMaster.
"We developed something to solve a problem, then turned it into a business," Juranek said.
Now, they're exploring other problems they can help solve.
"There's big opportunity," Juranek said. "We've been focused on a niche market that can be broadened to other associations."
Associations like ones that are member-driven or community based. Company leaders want to help the associations' members get more out of their memberships.
"Members usually have to reach out to the association to learn about it or gain from it," Juranek said. "We can use technology to do that."
"I love technology and using it to make people's lives easier," he said.
There's no secret to success in the business world, Juranek said. Even as some businesses fail while others thrive, it comes down to simple, basic concepts.
"We've been extremely blessed to have the right combination of people join the team," Juranek said. "It's truly not about ourselves, but how we can serve the team. That translates to customer service."
About the company:
1996: MicroNet began
1998: ChamberMaster released
2012: MemberZone launched
2014: Member Marketplace acquired