5 Questions With Umang Patel - Director of Technology

Posted by Dominique Ferraro on Fri, Mar 3, 2017 @ 10:03 AM


Today is Employee Appreciation Day! Last month, we blogged about ways to show your employees that you're grateful today and every day with promotional items. 

In honor of this special holiday, we're reinstating our "Five Questions With" Series, every so often featuring PK employees on our blog.

This week, we're featuring Umang Patel - a new addition to the PK team who is going to have a big impact on our future plans! Here's what he has to say.

 1. How long have you been working with ParsonsKellogg, what is your role here, and what is your background?
I met Tom in August of 2016, and it was immediately clear that we had the same ideas for ParsonsKellogg's growth. I started with the company straight away, acting as Director of Technology, and began working on incorporating technology into the PK business model. My role (and my team's role) is to bring PK to the leading edge of technology in the promotional products industry. We are going to take the premium promotional apparel industry by storm.

I come from India, and my family is there, but I spend much of my time here in the US helping businesses like ParsonsKellogg thrive in the technology space. I have degrees in what seem to be 6 unrelated fields and an MBA from Bentley University's McCallum School of Business. I'm a man of many hats, and these degrees in hospitality, advanced accounting, marketing, and business administration seem to be unrelated - but I think they help me bring a holistic view of a business to my work. My experience in recent years has included high level positions in app, software, and game development companies as well as web design roles.

2. How do you think technology can bring ParsonsKellogg's business to the next level?
The promotional products industry and really shopping on the whole is trending towards technology -- whether it's shopping online or through mobile apps. ParsonsKellogg already offers a selection of promotional products that stands out when set alongside their competitors. We are going to bring that premium product selection to the next level by incorporating technology into the PK world and streamlining business processes so that we can best serve our clients both on the web and in person.

3. What are your goals for PK through the projects that you're working on?
One of PK's goals for 2017 is to bring technology to the core of their business. My goal is to make it easier for customers to browse promotional products and visualize their logos on the premium brand items PK has to offer. We all want PK to be at the forefront of the promotional wearables industry and strategically growing in a way that will allow us to best serve our clients, and that's what I'm here to help accomplish.

4. What project are you most excited about?
Shop PK is going to revolutionize the promotional products shopping experience for PK clients. The shop, which will be an online catalog of the items from PK's exclusive family of premium brands, is going to allow the company to provide promotional items to more and more different types of clients in a more streamlined fashion.

PK has great relationships with their vendors and is able to offer a selection of promotional apparel and accessories that companies won't be able to find anywhere else on the web. When this project launches (soon!), clients will be able to view items from brands they may have never seen in corporate catalogs before and put together a cart - a traditional online shopping experience that will give customers greater access to promotional product options, at the tips of their fingers. My team and I, and really all of ParsonsKellogg's employees, are excited for the launch.

5. If you had to choose 1 item from our premium brand selection, what item would you choose, and what would you put on it?
Patagonia's selection of travel bags is unbeatable. With all off my traveling, I need durable luggage to bring along with me. I'd probably pick one of their Black Hole bags. If I had to pick an everyday item, this would be it.

However - PK's Marketing Director made a great t-shirt for me, and I think that's the number one item I would choose hands down. It's a t-shirt with my face on it that says "Make India Great Again" - my team thinks it's hilarious! 

Topics: employee appreciation, employee rewards programs, employee recognition, promo products, shop pk

Upcoming Giving: Employee Appreciation Day

Posted by Dominique Ferraro on Thu, Feb 2, 2017 @ 08:02 AM


If you're anything like us, it's easy to let dates and holidays sneak up on you. Whether it's last minute Christmas shopping, or calling the florist first thing Valentine's Day morning, finding that perfect gift in the 11th hour can bring a lot of stress.

At PK, we want to ensure you don't miss opportunities to show your appreciation and strengthen your brand throughout the year. That's why we're staying ahead of the game in 2017 and letting you know what's upcoming for promotional products trends. 

On March 3, employers nationwide will celebrate Employee Appreciation Day, an annual event held the first Friday of March to recognize employees for their hard work behind the scenes. Geniune appreciation can't be faked - and it's important to inspire your employees to feel good about working at your company! The number one reason employees leave their jobs is becuase they feel they're not recognized for their hard work, so we're here to help you plan the best way to make your employees feel appreciated. 

Recognition programs have proven time and time again to increase productivity, augment employee engagement, and decrease turnover. March 3 gives employers a chance to show the appreciation they feel every day in a big way. 

Whether you'll celebrate their hard work in just one day, or you want to give back every day, here are some great ideas to say thanks to those special people who keep your company going.

Make It A To-Do

Everyone loves a celebration. Instead of a gift this year, have some fun and host a small event to recognize your team's contributions. A catered breakfast is a go-to hit at any office, complete with all the fixings. Or, give your team a Summer Friday (the 3rd is the end of the week after all!) Have a bigger budget? A company dinner with families is a great way to say thanks to your employees and those who support them.*

*Disclaimer: We do not recommend a Michael Scott-worthy introductory rap from the boss at the event.

High Quality Items that Pack a Punch

High quality gifts show your employees that you've put thought into your purchase. With ParsonsKellogg, you get exclusive access to premium brands like Peter Millar, Johnnie-O, Patagonia, Nike, and more - brands your employees know and love that make amazing employee gifts. Your team goes above and beyond every day, so choose a gift that goes above and beyond for them.

PM coastline-x2.jpgtumi-x2.jpgNano Puff-x2.jpg

Pictured Items: Peter Millar Coastline Sweater, Tumi Duffel, Patagonia Nano Puff Jacket

Work in Recognition Every Day

A grand gesture can be great, but the little things can have a big impact. Some companies hold a weekly meeting to discuss sales wins; others post accomplishments on a centralized screen in the lobby. Whether it's a Cross pen, a premium leather Journalbook, or even a simple "thank you," it's important to show your recognition every day. 

Showing your employees the appreciation they deserve requires thought and planning. Let PK take the hard work off your plate and help you create a healthy, motivating work environment by planning meaningful employee giving for your teams.

Contact us to learn more. 






Topics: employee rewards programs, corporate gift, employee recognition, premium brands, promotional products, thank you, employee appreciation