Integrators '20 under 40' 2016—Melissa Peters
Melissa Peters, 36
Systems integrator, Norris Inc.
South Portland, Maine
Melissa Peters is starting her 11th year at Norris, a systems integrator based out of South Portland, Maine.
“It’s a pretty rewarding job; I get to help keep people safe and protect their building,” she said.
At Norris, Peters focuses on fire alarm system sales, which includes both end user and contractor sales. She said she likes being able to go out in the community. “I like that every day is a little different—nothing’s the same, every day is a new challenge,” she said.
When Peters first started at Norris, she was answering phones as an administrative assistant in the service department. “[I] then moved into contract sales,” she said. “So, I did monitoring and maintenance contracts and our annual test and inspections contracts.” From there, she became a systems integrator with the company.
Peters said that mass notification systems are a big technology for the company, “We’re doing a lot of that with schools, and we get to take that and integrate that with my security partners here.” The company released its own emergency notification system, Vigilance, in March 2015.
Wireless and gas detection technologies are also rising in interest for the company, she said.
In regard to the best ways to recruit young talent, Peters said, “We have some great local technical colleges and programs; I think spending more time recruiting people out of those programs, getting involved and letting them know what our industry has to offer [helps].”
Another important aspect for gaining talent is “providing [employees] with an opportunity to grow within the company, and to provide a place where you can promote them from within.”
Norris’ main footprint is in the Northeast United States, with about 50 employees across offices; two in Maine, one in Vermont and one in New Hampshire. The company was founded in 1979.