When we started the Genisyst networking business in 1995 the modern internet was in its infancy. Websites were few and far between and most business communications went by mail or fax, not email. Having already been in the computer software business for fifteen years we realised that this would change and that the internet, and networking in general, would see big developments over the coming years. This has been borne out beyond most peoples’ expectations, including ours. Networking, both inside business offices and between offices and those of third parties, has grown to be integral to business life, its operations and profitability. The implementation of good networking functionality and practice has come to be essential for successful day-to-day operation of business and therefore a core area of business investment. Failure in this area causes major problems and loss of profitability.

At the very start of our networking business we decided to invest in infrastructure and skills. This has continued over the succeeding fifteen years and has enabled us and our customers to move ahead as the technology has developed, positioning us to take advantage of new opportunities in technical improvements and increased cost-effectiveness. Our initial infrastructure investment was in an access server located in our own office with dial-in lines for customers to connect to us and hence to the

internet via a dedicated permanent connection. We installed servers in the office to handle customers’ email and to host their websites.

Once ADSL connections became an economic reality we moved our infrastructure to an inner-city datacentre and put our routers and servers on the internet backbone to give customers fast and efficient services. These facilities have been upgraded many times in the intervening years as have our connections to upstream providers. Ethernet internet connections now provide our customers with fast and cost-effective network access over fibre, copper or wireless connections provided by the major telecoms providers here in Australia and integrated by ourselves into a seamless network. As new technologies emerge our network will expand to encompass them and provide customers with flexible and cost-effective solutions.

More recently we have also been engaged in the provision of voice services and are now well positioned to assist customers with the convergence of their voice and data services. There are big savings to be made with this technology, most of which are yet to be realised.

All this development has also required a big investment in learning and the acquisition of technical skills. As a result we are able to provide our customers with sophisticated advice and the ability, particularly in larger organisations, to solve many of the problems that routinely occur and that we have already solved in building up our own network.

David Blandford