Even if you don’t know the name Monroe Systems for Business, you’ve probably seen or used one of its products. Monroe is best known for its heavy-duty office calculators that print out calculations like a receipt.
The company’s founders, Jay R. Monroe and Frank S. Baldwin, invented the modern commercial calculator back in 1912. Calculators have come a long way since then. Cheap, digital alternatives and apps have taken over, and competitors have come and gone, but Monroe remains a leader in the field it created more than a century ago.
Monroe machines are on desks in the offices of Fortune 500 companies, and over the years, they’ve expanded to shredders, printers, and other business hardware. Monroe has even made it on the small and big screens, with its products appearing on AMC drama series “Mad Men” and the 2016 blockbuster “Hidden Figures.”
“Prior to personal computers, our Monroe calculators, or commercial calculators in general, would be found on every businessperson's desk,” said Jason Marsdale, Monroe’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “Now, they have remained popular within specific industries and roles that require fast and accurate calculations.”
Monroe printing calculators offer several advantages over computers, Marsdale added.
“Unlike computers, our printing calculators are on/off devices without all of the distractions or worrying about software updates or slower performance,” he said. “Additionally, since our calculators are not connected to any computer network, they cannot be hacked. Our printing calculators provide superior data protection when compared to the devices connected to a network.”
Generally, Monroe has found over the years that customers in roles requiring them to perform calculations on an ongoing basis still prefer Monroe calculators over other new technology, both for efficiency and because other brands do not have the strong, personal customer relationships.
“We are a high-touch organization,” Marsdale said. “Our team regularly communicates with our end-users and partners so we can maintain a pulse on what is going on. As a result of staying attuned to our customers, we have been able to successfully maintain many customer relationships for more than 40 years.”
Monroe also is redefining its business and creating new ways to grow. That includes expanding its product offerings to complementary products for its clients such as high-security shredding solutions, cash management, ink and toners, and more. Additionally, they have a division focused on marketing products through e-commerce marketplaces such as Amazon.com, Walmart.com, NewEgg.com, Ebay.com, and many more. Thanks to the forward thinking and national business relationships, Amazon.com invited Monroe to become a Channel Partner for their package locker systems that are placed throughout the USA. Monroe provides business development services to Amazon.com that will assist with identifying business locations to host the package lockers for Amazon.com.
“We are treating this century-old business as a startup, looking for ways to reinvent ourselves,” Marsdale said. Having remained in business since 1912, Monroe recognizes the continuous need to evolve.
Another way Monroe has focused on growing is by increasing its e-commerce presence. In August of 2021, Monroe installed Fast Checkout onto its website. The one-click checkout button from payments platform Fast allows Monroe customers to place orders in mere seconds.
“We’re focused on increasing conversion rates and driving higher customer satisfaction thanks to an improved user experience,” Marsdale said. “Fast will help us reach that goal simply by staying true to their name and being fast!”