Steve Pickering is the Founder and Managing Director of String. Known as a perfectionist, Steve has a keen eye on detail and the inherent need to do things right. With over 30 years industry experience and a technical background, he brings a structured approach to defining the String business strategy, crafting the company culture and driving the growth of the business. This approach has seen String grow year on year since its creation.
"I want to ensure whether you are an existing or prospective client, or an existing or prospective member of the String team, that we have an organisation that is focussed on service excellence, is a great place to work and that we have some fun along the way"
When not in work mode Steve can be found spending time with the family, preferably on holiday or trying to keep fit on two wheels.
Tom Wright is the Technical Director at String Systems and is responsible for all aspects of our innovation, portfolio development, system design/architecture and key vendor relationships. He is passionate about how technology can be truly transformational in the modern workplace and works across our client base focussing on collaboration, productivity, security, business continuity and cloud deployment. As Steve's business partner in String, Tom also plays a key role in helping to shape the business strategy, the systems, processes and culture at the heart of what makes String the partner of choice for forward thinking organisations.
Downtime is spent with the family and nothing beats a good long run to exercise the body and mind.
Nigel Bennett joined String in 2007 as the Business Development Manager and has been a key figure in the company's journey of growth. A wealth of client facing experience in a variety of roles earlier in his career, provided the perfect backdrop for Nigel's principle role, leading the business development and account management functions. Thriving on building relationships that endure, he is passionate about taking our clients on a journey which sees IT truly support their business ambitions. And he brings his extensive skills to bear inside our business mentoring all non technical new starters.
Away from the office, Nigel is a huge supporter of Liverpool FC and attends games as often as he can with one of his sons. His other son supports Manchester United, which makes for interesting discussions around the dinner table.
Francis (Fran) Grundy joined String in 2018 as a key member of the Account Management Team. He brings extensive client service capability and experience after 12 years working in some of the UK's largest IT and Telecom companies. A desire to work in a far more hands on and client facing role in an ambitious and growing company saw the perfect match for Fran and String. He now works with dozens of our client organisations helping to define the right solutions and then ensuring they are successfully delivered and well supported afterwards acting as his client's principal contact.
A busy family man, spare time is a luxury, but on those occasions when he gets any, he likes nothing more than some peace and quiet
Heidi Eastham is an important member of our growing Business Support team. Working closely with the Account Management team she is a highly experienced individual, performing a broad range of administrative duties. She also works as part of the front of house team, taking inbound calls, ensuring clients get a warm welcome and importantly get to speak to the right people and have a positive experience.
A keen country walker, the perfect weekend would be a hike in the lakes with family and dogs and weather permitting an al fresco picnic
Julia Higson is also a busy and important member of our Business Support team. Call handling, procurement, stock control, diary management and resource scheduling are all key parts of her portfolio and allow her to utilise her extensive people interaction skills both externally and internally acquired over a number of years in a variety of client facing roles.
Julia loves to travel and has been fortunate to visit exotic places around the world. The next holiday is always in planning mode and she is happy to report that there are still plenty of amazing places for her and her husband to visit
Operations and administration
Jen Pickering is another busy member of the String Team who brings her extensive operations and administration experience to bear in directly supporting the Service Delivery team. Working closely with all members of that team, she is constantly focussed on the successful day to day project delivery execution and issue resolution, and exploring new ways to drive excellence and best practice.
Out of work Jen shares with husband and MD Steve the responsibility for keeping two teenage girls busy and where they need to be, but does find time to relax with yoga
Service Delivery Manager
Andy Carter is the Service Delivery Manager at String Systems with overall responsibility for all project delivery and managed service/support delivery
With an IT journey spanning 5 decades, Andy has an impressive breadth of experience across a range of disciplines and functions. He has brought this experience to bear working on projects with household names including AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Hilton Worldwide, MBNA Bank, Planet Hollywood, Rolls Royce and The Walt Disney Company. Taking pride in a job well done is a huge driver for Andy who seeks to ensure expectations are exceeded across all the services String deliver and leads our multi-disciplined technical team by example.
Outside of work, Andy likes nothing more than spending as much time as possible with his family.
David Aspinall, with 30 years technical experience under his belt, is a highly experienced IT engineer who has been a popular member of the String team since 2013. Working across both the internal help desk and on client site, he thrives on knowledge acquisition, recognising that the world of IT is very different now to the one he joined in the 1980's.
Being from Wigan, Dave cites two of his favourite pastimes as watching Wigan Warriors Rugby League and enjoying a good pie! He does attend his local gym to help counteract the pie effect.
Craig Prince is an experienced Support Technician focussed wherever possible on issue prevention rather than issue resolution. Having worked both in end user system support in the Education sector and in other Managed Service Providers, Craig has had plenty of exposure to the challenges that system disruption can cause and truly appreciates the value our clients get from their issues being resolved quickly and efficiently.
For Craig, the buzz of a challenge doesn't stop outside work and he enjoys nothing better than taking on the climbing wall at his local climbing centre
Kieran Park started his IT career managing the internal systems for a commercial organisation, before joining String to broaden his horizons in 2011. His blend of technical expertise, desire to provide great service and appetite to continue to acquire new skills make him an integral part of the team.
An IT gaming fan, Kieran spends his spare time honing his skills and participating in gaming competitions nationwide.
Having relocated from the South of England to the North West in 2004, Jason White joined the String team in 2016 as a hugely experienced IT Engineer and technician who both takes the lead on many of the more complex implementations String increasingly undertake for their clients and is a knowledgeable resource when a thorny issue arises on the service desk. In the industry since 1995, his skills encompass all aspects of the Microsoft stack, virtualisation, storage, thin client, security and cloud migration. Outside work he enjoys time with the family and both tinkering with his classic car and attending classic car shows and motor racing events.
John Cumiskey had an extensive career as an IT and communications specialist in the Armed Forces and then the railway industry, before moving into the commercial world and putting his skills to great use in the Managed Service community. He joined String in 2017 as a 3rd Line Engineer and takes the lead on key installations and projects. With an absolute focus on ensuring client satisfaction, John prides himself on being a friendly face on site.
When not in work, John can be found trying his hand at DIY projects around the home and being the appointed family geek, forever on call for family and friends.
Mike Bentley joined us in 2018 and brings a wealth of experience from the Managed Service and IT solutions world. He spent over 20 years working in and then co-owning a multi-million £, award winning, well respected and profitable organisation serving 400 SME organisations across the North of England. Having successfully sold that business, and following some time out to recharge his batteries, Mike was looking for an ambitious organisation he could join and put his experiences to good use and was delighted to find String.
For Mike, travel remains his favourite pastime when not working, with the perfect trip combining seeing new places and sun lounger time
Emma Evans joined the organisation at the beginning of 2019 as String's Financial Controller. With 9 years prior experience in financial roles both in hospitality and more recently education, she brings a wealth of varied experience to a busy role leading the finance function in the growing String business.
When not in work, Emma enjoys spending time with the family (husband and 3 teenage children), learning Italian and renovating/holidaying at, a recently acquired old farmhouse in the Abruzzo region of Italy.