Walking into a car dealership and asking which car is the best, is a bit like asking a barber if you need a haircut.  The salesperson has a vested interest in selling their products, and while they might steer you towards something that fits your needs, they're unlikely to suggest you walk away and buy from a competitor. In today's world, where information is readily available, we've become accustomed to doing our own research before making purchases. Whether it's determining our budget, quality expectations, or what features are non-negotiable, we like to be informed consumers.

However, not all purchases are as straightforward as buying a car. Many transactions in the business world are complex, lacking unbiased reviews to help us make informed decisions. This is where advisors come into play. Whether we're buying new technology, software, or services, we often rely on advisors to guide us. But here's the catch: Is your advisor also a sales rep earning a commission on your purchase? What is their motivation, and would they ever make you aware of other options if they couldn’t offer them to you?

Recently, we began working with a new client who discovered that the warranty on their less than 3-year-old server had expired. What they believed was a brand-new server installed by their previous IT company turned out to be an old server with a few upgrades. Unfortunately, scenarios like this are all too common. Clients may not receive recommendations that fit their budget, opt for cheaper solutions without understanding the risks, or be misled by salespeople eager to make a sale.

At SymTec, we decided back in 2012 not to sell hardware. While it would have been an additional revenue stream, we recognized the conflict of interest between being a salesperson and a trusted advisor. Instead, we chose neutrality. By not selling hardware or taking commissions from vendors, we maintain a relationship of trust with our clients. We believe that good equipment leads to a better overall IT experience—it's more reliable, lasts longer, protects client data better, allows for greater efficiency, and requires fewer repairs.

Our commitment to neutrality means that we provide our clients with the best advice, free from any bias towards products or vendors. We only make exceptions for convenience, where we show clients the price of products and purchase them with a markup if they prefer. Ultimately, our goal is to ensure that our clients get exactly what they need within their budget, without any surprises down the road. It's about building trust and providing the best possible service, every step of the way.