Cleartech offers turnkey computer solutions

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December 11, 2017

Cleartech offers turnkey computer solutions

By Michael Hartwell, Correspondent
UPDATED:   12/10/2017 06:32:20 AM EST

LEOMINSTER -- For the average small business owner, technology is both crucial to success and mysterious. That's according to Tony Fields, president of the newly-renamed Cleartech Group.

His goal is to make the opaque world of technology clear for people.

"We make tech work for you," said Fields, 48. "The technology a small business is going to use, that's what we work with."

With a target market of small businesses and growing businesses, Cleartech has been in Leominster for 14 years. Previously, the company was a location for the franchise Computer Troubleshooters. In October, the IT company moved to a new location at 1079 Central St. and on Dec. 1, Fields separated the original company from its franchise and the newly independent company Cleartech Group was born.

While most of Fields clients are people who know how to run a business but have limited knowledge of technology, he found himself with the opposite set of skills when he started his firm 14 years ago.

"I didn't know how to run a business," said Fields. He said the franchise brought in resources like branding, marketing and a corporate structure that he was able to use. Now with over a decade of experience under his belt, Fields is able to go out on his own. He's also changed the focus of the company.

Previously, Fields and his service technicians were called in for repairs when a client had a technology problem, such as a program crashing or not working.

Fields said the business model has shifted away from fixing problems when they arise and towards preventing them from happening.



They provide technology maintenance and prevention packages to clients, and if something does go wrong they can step in and fix it.

Picture a new business that sells widgets. Cleartech will sign a contract with the company and help them build a technology framework for the company. They will recommend specific computers and software for widget sales, make sure the computer network can handle the specific needs of the company and be in charge of keeping the computers and networks running at full speed.

Fields is a second-generation techie who grew up in Ayer. His father was a systems analyst who now teaches corporate workers how to use software like Microsoft Excel. Fields' first computer was a TSR-80 in the 1980s and he had a knack working with it. He said he never got into playing games on his computer, letting his nerdy side come out instead by reading comic books like "The Black Panther" and "The Avengers."

At 23 he joined the Air Force and worked as computer operator for space command where he tracked weather satellites. He also worked in mobile tech, setting up networks and communications at mobile military bases in the early 1990s.

He said when he entered the private sector in the late 1990s, small businesses were suddenly reaping tremendous benefits from computers.

The skills he had been developing since childhood were suddenly in high demand and he started working in the Boston area.

Now a Shirley resident, Fields has three sons, two of whom are high school seniors. Fields also coaches for the girl's high school basketball team. He stresses to his players the importance of personal growth and character skills like teamwork and standing strong in the face of adversity.

"All of those concepts lend themselves to the business world," said Fields. He said integrity is one of the most important character attributes someone can develop and defines it as doing the right thing when no one is looking.

"It's something I live by," said Fields. He also advocates for the local business community and his company helps the local Boys & Girls Club, such as by providing them with IT support.

Cleartech Group employs four service technicians, a marketing representative and an office manager who works remotely from South Carolina. One of those technicians is Jared Fields, Tony Fields eldest son. He started doing graphic design and social media work for the company before becoming a full-time employee in Feb. 2016.

Jared Fields describes the work atmosphere as fun, but still professional. Most of the employee work stations have superhero and Star Wars action figures propped up around their display monitors.

Tony Fields said at the end of the day, technology is a way to make things easier. It can't run the business or replace human interaction, but it can make tasks easier and make workers more effective. He said

Cleartech Group helps companies get their tech systems set up effectively and give customers peace of mind that their technology will keep working for them.



Read more: http://www.sentinelandenterprise.com/business/ci_31515067/cleartech-offers-turnkey-computer-solutions#ixzz50zMWqYqT

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