Spotlight: HigherGround Wants Small Businesses to Stop Worrying about IT



Spotlight: Managed IT Solutions Company HigherGround Manages IT and Consults with Small Businesses

For businesses that need help with IT but don’t have the resources to hire a professional full time, a managed service provider can help. HigherGround Managed Services is one such service provider. The company offers a full-service experience and consulting to meet the needs of their clients around the Chicago area. Read more about the company and its offerings in this week’s Small Business Spotlight.



What the Business Does

Offers managed IT solutions to small and medium sizedbusinesses in the Chicago area.

CEO Brian Brammeier told Small Business Trends, “HigherGround is a full-service IT and consulting firm that partners with entrepreneurs and leaders of small to medium-sized organizations in the greater Chicago area — ensuring they spend more time managing their core businesses and less time worrying about their IT infrastructures. HigherGround provides managed IT services (MSP), managed security (MSSP), IT staffing including fractional CIOs and CTOs, application development consulting and management, and IT disconnect/reconnect for corporate moves and logistics.”

Business Niche

Helping companies reach their potential through IT.

Brammeier says, “HigherGround’s tagline is “We deliver on the promises that other IT firms make.” HigherGround helps companies that are growing fast use technology to fuel their growth, as well as companies that are struggling with growth and know tech is a limiting factor.”

Spotlight: Managed IT Solutions Company HigherGround Manages IT and Consults with Small Businesses





How the Business Got Started

Because of a love of tinkering with computers.

Brammeier began taking computers apart decades ago, then realized he needed to learn how to put them back together. After honing his skills, he realized he could actually charge for his services. He originally started the company called Brammeier Computer Services in the late 90’s out of his bedroom in his parents’ house and then his dorm room. In 2015, he made the leap to the company’s current office and changed the name to HigherGround.

Biggest Win

Creating a successful hiring plan.

Brammeier says, “This has helped provide clients with consistent and above-and-beyond service from people who fit our culture.”

Biggest Risk

Separating from a key team member who wasn’t a good fit.





Brammeier explains, “This posed a risk since, separating HigherGround from this key team member, meant rebooting most of the Tech team. It was one step back to take two steps forward and, had it gone wrong, HigherGround would have disrupted and dissatisfied clients. With careful planning and staffing up ahead of the change, HigherGround was able to swap out a key position while keeping staffing issues mainly “behind the curtain” as far as clients were concerned.”

Lesson Learned

Communication is key.

Brammeier says, “Every week HigherGround has an all company meeting to discuss current projects, new clients, changes and updates. HigherGround is even now tweaking that process to share more real-time information flowing from weekly management meetings directly into these all company meetings so team members don’t have to guess at what the company direction is.”



Spotlight: Managed IT Solutions Company HigherGround Manages IT and Consults with Small Businesses



How They’d Spend an Extra $100,000

Growing the team or building out automation.

Favorite Team Lunch

Buffalo chicken pizza.



Brammeier says, “The HigherGround team loves Buffalo Chicken Pizza – everything from it’s spicy chicken tenders, drizzled bleu cheese dressing and mozzarella cheese. It’s a good one.”

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Find out more about the Small Biz Spotlight program

Photos: HigherGround, Brian Brammeier
Group photo: From left to right: Team members Jemyio, Anthony, Richard, Frank, Ben, Craig, Earl, Sok, Mudassir, Gabby and Jerry



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Annie Pilon


Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found on her personal blog Wattlebird, and exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

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