Juan Carlos Bosacoma, the founder and president of CIO Landing, Inc., landed in the world of IT and computers by fluke. Juan Carlos – JC, as he’s known in many circles – started university in his home country of Bolivia in South America with a transcript full of chemistry and biology classes that would prepare him for a career in medicine.
But fate would intervene, and just a few short months into his first semester, the university was forced to close its doors. Bolivia has long been known for its decades of political instability and social uprisings.
As JC patiently waited for the current political crisis to come to an end so he could resume his studies, his dad heard about an institute that was teaching courses in programming and computers and thought JC could occupy his time there – and even enjoy it.
His dad was right. Those courses changed JC’s life. “All of a sudden, it felt like the gates of heaven opened up, and I had this revelation – so this is how computers work. This is how programming works!” JC says. “And at that point, I knew. This is it. This is for me.”
JC finished those initial courses with a renewed sense of purpose and ended up with a scholarship that would bring him to the US to study computer science at the University at Buffalo.
For a year, JC studied in earnest, and then he learned his scholarship was about to run out. He had to get a job – and fast. That’s when he first got his feet wet in the business world, working in software development to pay for school.
After earning his degree in computer science, he went on to get a master’s degree in industrial engineering, graduating – unlike many students saddled with student loan debt – with money in the bank.
JC spent the next few years working as a software development consultant before moving to Chicago to work with the Quaker Oats company, developing software and implementing ERP and logistics technologies.
During this time, he earned his MBA from the University of Chicago. After leaving Quaker, he started his own ISP company, along with three other partners, and would go on to sell that business in 2002. He then started a consulting firm helping large organizations doing mostly CIO and project work. Eventually this firm pivoted in 2012 to become an MSP, which is today, CIO Landing, Inc.
Bringing Fortune 500 IT Strategies To SMEs
From the start, large corporations were top of mind for JC. Managed IT solutions were something these companies needed to streamline workflows, improve communication, access and share data, and protect and secure information.
“Not smaller companies,” he says. “They just don’t have the resources or the sophistication when it comes to technology that larger firms do.” And then JC realized that the reasons he was counting them out were the very reasons they needed him.
The seeds of transformation began when JC helped a friend propel his small manufacturing company to new heights by putting systems in place that allowed him to focus more of his time on sales and marketing efforts.
Initially, the owner of the company knew that technology was necessary but didn’t know how to use it to his advantage to affect his bottom line – until JC helped him get there. “He was able to grow the business and ended up selling it for $18 million,” JC says. “The technology is one of the elements that allowed him to do that.”
JC says it was from that experience he realized that smaller companies with a tech-friendly attitude really needed the help, and that he could make a significant impact on their business efficiencies and productivity by applying and right-sizing the same technologies and methodologies he deployed at larger firms.
“It’s rewarding to see the difference we can make for companies whose view of what technology should be isn’t always broad in terms of how it can affect their bottom line,” JC says.
He says when companies are willing to take the advice and make the investment in managed IT services, they can see maximum uptime and availability, freeing them up to “do their real job,” ultimately seeing a return on their investment.
Today, CIO Landing, Inc., is an industry-leading IT company providing outsourced CIO oversight, professional IT services and technical support to small and medium-sized businesses in the Chicagoland area. They offer onsite IT services, complete computer and network solutions, project management and consulting, network security, IT infrastructure management, cloud integration, virtualization and network storage solutions – specifically to verticals in regulated markets and manufacturing.
For businesses in financial, health care and legal sectors that operate under government oversight, technology isn’t an option. JC says they can’t afford to be lax about their client data or there are consequences. The same with manufacturers. They need to have the right technology to accurately place and track inventory or trace orders.
Besides using the proven technology strategies they sell to help their clients build successful businesses, CIO Landing credits those same approaches for allowing its own employees to operate globally, keeping them all connected so they can deliver results.
When Employees Have A Say, Success Is Inevitable
With 22 employees spread across four countries, CIO Landing has a long track record of making sure employees feel like they have a say and a stake in the company. JC says establishing that foundation from CIO’s beginning has been immensely helpful for authentic and organic growth.
Having a say in the company is “a little bit like the difference between owning a car and renting a car. You’re going to be much more attentive and cautious in how you treat the car if you own it, versus if it belongs to someone else,” says JC. “Our employees are one of our key assets. They are who we are, and they are always ready to serve our clients.”
A Customer Service Company That Happens To Do Technology
If its employees are part of CIO’s core values, so too is their customer service standard. They have built their reputation on providing commercial clients with up-to-date, technically savvy, cost-effective IT solutions while making certain their clients’ needs are met “in a fast, fluid and friendly manner.”
They can do that because they invest the time in understanding their clients’ current needs and future goals, with the mission to make those businesses better by learning how they can make their day-to-day simpler. JC knows that technology is complicated, and their clients can’t afford to be held up because of it.
Each client’s level of understanding technology varies, and some don’t want – nor do they try – to understand it in depth. That’s a major reason CIO Landing gets hired – to be a company’s Chief Information Officer: the person, in this case the team, that oversees the technology side so the client can focus on the business side. What clients do know about the technology is that it helps them improve costs, sell better and increase productivity, and it is a strategic tool for their growth.
“In many ways, we’re a customer service company that does technology,” he says. “Making sure clients are well-served is paramount to everything we do. It’s one of the reasons I’m in this business.”
From Unrest Comes Found Worth
Having his career in medicine derailed because of a political upheaval turned advantageous for JC, with zero regrets – for him or his parents. He credits his parents for being supportive in anything he wanted to do, and his dad was pleased that he had exposed JC to something he himself wouldn’t have pursued. “This is what I was made for,” JC says.