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Directive Blogs

Directive has been serving the Oneonta area since 1993, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

A Backup Protects Your Business from Issues of All Kinds

Data has effectively become another currency - and just like any other currency, some is much more valuable than others. This is especially the case where your business’ data is concerned, and why it is so crucial that you keep it safe.

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A Brief Review of Backup Strategies

For the modern business, not having a backup system in place is inexcusable. If you use digital data to run your business, you need to protect the data you can’t replace by having it backed up regularly. Some businesses have been around long enough to have files that don’t have any practical application in the course of business. You don’t need this data, and you don’t need a copy of it. Today, we will discuss how to select and choose which pieces of data you should seek to protect. 

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What Value Do Managed Services Offer? Secondly, Support

It wasn't too long ago that we had to lug a computer into the shop to get it fixed if something were to go wrong with it. Frankly, with the pace that business is conducted at today, this approach simply isn’t effective for businesses any longer. Now, with the support of a managed service provider, support is available much more efficiently and affordably than ever. Check out our series for more information into other subject. 

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What Value Do Managed Services Offer? Firstly, Proactivity

Why do we focus so strongly on business productivity? In many cases, it can be boiled down to a basic equation: the more productive a business is, the greater the value that its actions will have. This is just one way that managed services can bring a business value - by helping to make its actions more productive. That’s why it is only fitting that we look at productivity in this first installment of our series examining the added value that managed services provide.

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Big Data Is Revolutionizing Business

Traditionally, small businesses don’t use their data in the same way as larger companies. This is largely because they may not think they have a lot of data. Well, I’m here to tell you that even small businesses can have big data. Let’s go over three ways small business can use their data to their benefit.

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How Business Communications Make Your Processes Better

Business communications, which is the succinct way to say the sharing of information between people both internal and external to a company, is a key player in that company’s success. Here, we’ll analyze the different types of communication that a business could leverage, and the solutions that best enable them.

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Oneonta Employers Should Look to Local Schools for Prospects

Every summer, there is a new crop of recent graduates seeking employment opportunities. This is especially true here in Oneonta. Area businesses should be paying close attention to these young graduates and trying to entice them into employment, as they are likely to have fostered precisely the skills these businesses are seeking.

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A Computer Procurement Guide, Part V

We have finally reached the end of our guide to help you purchase your next computer. In the other four parts, we covered how you could identify the specifications your device would need for your intended use of it. Here, we’ll review some other assorted considerations to keep in mind as you finalize your new device.

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Help Desks Help Remedy the Following IT Problems

Downtime is a major problem for businesses, and it’s largely a result of technology taking over the workplace. Since many jobs rely on technology to be done properly, it stands to reason that broken-down technology can pose a considerable issue for businesses--not to mention the costs that are associated with downtime and maintenance. A help desk can alleviate some of the pressure that the average employee feels as a result of relying on technology in the workplace.

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A Computer Procurement Guide, Part II

Part two of our desktop buying guide will dig into the details of RAM, or random-access memory. We hope to clear up misconceptions about what RAM actually is, as many users don’t understand the difference between storage and memory. Who knows? You might learn a thing or two to take with you when you purchase your next desktop.

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Evaluating Your Business’ Information Technology

It’s imperative that you keep your IT infrastructure under control, but many organizations push it to the side. The problem is that ignoring IT often makes it so that you aren’t properly evaluating your technology infrastructure and support, meaning that you could be wasting time and resources that would be better spent elsewhere. Ask yourself the following questions to determine whether or not your IT systems are being maintained properly.

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You Can Attribute a Lack of Productivity to Downtime

Business owners try to avoid downtime like the plague, but it’s often a challenge to do so. The impact of downtime can be devastating for even the most well-to-do business, and this is even more so the case when you bring profits and bottom lines into view. We’ll take a look at how you can calculate the cost of a downtime event.

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4 Reasons You Should Implement Company Lunches

“One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.” – Luciano Pavarotti

While breakfast is commonly known as the most important meal of the day, lunch can be an influential part of the workday, especially where team building and morale is concerned. Here at Directive, we’ve long used our Crock-Pot Thursday lunches as a means of creating a more cohesive team.

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Backup and Disaster Recovery Can Keep You from Losing It All

Backup and disaster recovery (BDR) might seem like a singular process, but in reality it’s more of a combination of processes that work in tandem with each other. Backup and disaster recovery both require a different perspective and approach in order to make sure they play nicely with each other. We’ll attempt to address this difference and give you the information needed to make the best decisions possible for your solution.

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Productivity Can Be Stymied By Using Too Much Data

In business, productivity is the goal. Unfortunately, there are so many interruptions in the workday, you absolutely have to capitalize on the moments where you’re in the groove. To find the groove more frequently, and to measure the ability of workers to find their groove, companies have started using trackable systems fueled mainly by their management software--typically a CRM, but sometimes a larger, more integrated solution--to pump out metrics designed to give managers an idea how their teams are performing, and give them an idea about how to best utilize them. 

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Automation Growth and Your Business

Automation has been a hot button term for some time. Whether it is in reference to robots that manufacturers use to make their assembly lines more effective, the integrated workflows that today’s customer relationship management software presents, or A.I. crawling through mounds of data to help an entrepreneur better understand his/her business, automation is helping businesses move faster and be more agile. Today, we will look at how organizations are using automation, and how, even if it isn’t a big part of your business strategy today, it will need to be in the future.

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Instant Messaging Tips for Greater Productivity

Communication is a key part of the workplace, and modern tools have made it more efficient than ever before to stay in contact with one another. One of the most important tools in the modern business’ repertoire is instant messaging, which is somewhat challenging to utilize without a way of ensuring productivity and professionalism.

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Is Offering Remote Work a Benefit for Your Business?

Technology has become so commonplace in the office environment that work can be done from just about anywhere on any device. This has led to many organizations implementing a remote workforce--at least some of the time. There are actually several benefits to remote work, even for the employer, surprisingly enough.

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Tip of the Week: Stretch Your Legs and Get Healthy at Work

The office is a place where work gets done, but it’s also known as a sedentary lifestyle. Workplace wellness programs might be an $8 billion industry, but the effectiveness of these programs has yet to be determined. Let’s take a look at what kind of office wellness programs might work for you.

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Oneonta Businesses Shouldn’t Write Off Older Workers

Let me ask you something… how would you describe your ideal employee? Many people would rattle off a list of qualifications and personality traits - dedicated, focused, and experienced - with little issue, but seem to never be satisfied with the experience level of their young applicants. However, another group could make a great source of promising candidates: older workers.

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There’s a Wealth of Young Talent in Oneonta... Here’s How to Keep Them Around

Here in Oneonta, we have not one, but two institutions of higher education… which means we have quite a bit of talent being developed locally. In 2016, 2,003 degrees were awarded by our local universities - and one of the most popular majors, Business & Managerial Economics, provides a resource that can assist in making educated business decisions. It only makes sense that businesses around Oneonta would want to keep this kind of talent around.

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Technology Small Businesses Should Be Investing In

As small businesses have to do more with less, they’ve been increasingly looking to technology to fill the gaps. The problem is that many small businesses feel like the big tech companies don’t understand their needs. If you feel like the technology options you have at your disposal don’t necessarily fit your business’ needs, consider that these robust solutions have all the functionality that you need to manage your own business processes. Today, we’ll take a look at some of the enterprise technology SMBs are using to move their businesses forward and some of the considerations you may need to make to leverage a software solution that doesn’t seem like it fits.

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You’re Training the Business’ Future, Not Your Replacement

Planning for your business’ future is a critical activity to carry out, and we aren’t just talking about next quarter. You need to be sure that you are ready to accept that today’s status quo  isn’t permanent. Your business or your position should grow, which means that you and your employees are going to need to embrace more responsibility and authority, exploring different roles.

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Managing Millennials May Be Challenging, But Worth It

Generation Y (or Millennials, as they are more commonly known) have a rough reputation in the business world. Whether they’re being blamed for the death of entire industries or mocked for their fondness for avocado toast, it isn’t often that millennials are taken seriously - especially in the workplace. However, if nurtured correctly, this group has the potential to produce some of your top performers. Here, we’ll get into how to do so.

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What the Modern Worker Expects at His/Her Job

There aren’t many happier moments for a person than when they score their first big job. The opportunity to use the skills they have learned, and to pay off some of the debt that knowledge set them back, are two activities most people who are in this position relish. However, you can’t expect these opportunities to keep your employees around forever... you need to meet (and sometimes manage) their other expectations of the workplace.

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IT Consulting Brings Clarity

In today’s competitive business environment, you need all the help you can get. One of the biggest advantages you can achieve for your business is to take advantage of a trusted and reliable managed IT provider that can give your organization advice on how to navigate the murky waters of the technology world.

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How to Avoid Business Complacency

As a business owner, you need to be able to see the fine line between being comfortable with your position and being dangerously complacent. Otherwise, you run the risk of hindering your business’ growth, or even actively sabotaging its success. Let’s review why this is.

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What is Managed by a Managed Service Provider

Businesses have a lot of technology to manage. While some organizations have an in-house IT department to manage it, many small businesses are limited due to location factors, budget concerns, and countless other variables. In the past, organizations would turn to break-fix IT management for all of their technology issues, but trends in IT maintenance have given rise to a more popular and more sustainable way for small businesses to get the technology maintenance and management they need.

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4 Decisions You’ll Make About Your IT

Business is never quite as simple as it’s made out to be, and nowhere is this more true than with your organization’s IT. Today we will be covering some of the most important parts of your IT’s decision making that will need to be addressed, questions and concerns included, especially in regard to business-critical functions.

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How to Plan Your Data Storage Needs

If your business is looking to use technology beneficially, the ability to store data is going to be a major consideration you are going to have to confront. After all, not having enough storage space, or having too much, can be major problems for most businesses. Today, we’ll ask some of the most pressing questions you’ll need to answer to get the right (and the right amount of) storage space for your needs.

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Taking a Look at a Manufacturer’s IT

Manufacturing products is still a major part of the western economies; and, like other businesses, manufacturers are using information technology to fuel and manage their supply chains and business processes. We’ll take a short look at what IT manufacturers use, and how it helps them forge their business ahead.

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Tip of the Week: Excelling at Teamwork

How well do your employees collaborate with one another? Teamwork is essential to the success of any business, but it’s often something that doesn’t come naturally to some users. These days, there are ways you can make communication and teamwork more effective and efficient for your workforce. This week’s tip is dedicated to making this work.

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Ask Your Managed Service Provider These 6 Questions

Your business’ technology solutions might be a major point of contention for your bottom line, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t create value with it. In fact, one of the best ways you can create value for your business’ IT is by implementing a better way of managing it. We’ll walk you through what it means to shift from break-fix IT to managed IT services, as well as what questions you should ask to expedite the process.

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Automation is Sure to Have an Effect on Workers

Automation does nothing but help businesses, but can the same be said for the people that work at these businesses? With more systems relying on some semblance of artificial intelligence, smart automation could replace up to a quarter of the current workforce over the next ten years. Today, we will take a look at the importance of profitability and how AI is likely going to usher in a whole new era of human existence.

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Analytics Can Fool You

Businesses today are doing more than ever to utilize the data they take in, and it shows. They are operating with more knowledge about their business, and thus are able to successfully create a usable knowledge base that, for some, will allow them to predict positive and negative market dynamics fairly accurately. After seeing how this platform can positively affect individual businesses, many other businesses are taking to the strategies. The problem that many businesses encounter, however, is that they are woefully unprepared to utilize analytics; or, they read too far into them. Today, we’ll take a look at data analytics and confront some of the problem's businesses are having.

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Is Having a Constant Stream of Notifications Necessary?

Anyone that has used a computer is familiar with the following scenario. A friend tells you a story about an app that is really useful or fun so you take a chance and download it. After you download and fire it up, you get a pop up asking if you want to allow notifications from that app. You blast “yes” just to get to the application and sometime later, you are asleep or working and you get a notification from the company behind the app you downloaded. Then you get another one, and another, and since you’ve blasted “yes” on 25 little pop-ups, you are getting a constant flow of notifications that you could completely do without.

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If You’re Struggling Due to Cash Flow, You Aren’t Alone

Between you and me, how is your business doing financially? If you answered with something along the lines of “not great,” you are certainly not alone. Cash flow is an issue for businesses all around the world, as a recent report from Intuit makes all too clear.

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3 Things You Can Do to Hold More Effective Meetings

Do you ever feel like your business’ meetings simply don’t go as planned? These are often the most dangerous kind of meetings, as employees who have better things to do may find that meetings aren’t a great way of using their time (or their skills) properly. If you are having meetings that just seem like a waste of time, it’s your responsibility to start thinking about how you can improve them. Here are a few tips:

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We Break Down Break/Fix

In business today outsourcing your IT management or project management is routine. It wasn’t always so. For the first couple of decades of IT for business, that was the only way you were going to get a piece of technology up and working again without massive capital investment. Today, we will take a look at the break/fix method to IT management and how it is far more expensive than you may think.

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Don’t Make the Solutions More Complicated Than the Problem

The act of “yak shaving,” also known as “bikeshedding,” is a specific kind of procrastination that can hold you back from getting the most out of your workday. This week’s tip is dedicated to explaining what this nonsensical phrase means and why it’s beneficial to keep your employees on track.

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Is Your Effort Getting Things Done?

You can’t have a successful business without a little bit of productivity. Unfortunately, some office environments can have a negative influence on the way your employees get their work done. Take a moment to ask yourself this question: “Are you simply busy, or are you actually being productive?”

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Small and Medium-Sized Businesses Need to Prioritize Data Management

For the small business, being more efficient with resources can make a massive difference. In fact, it can be the difference between organizational sustainability and organizational failure. The bottom line is that, no matter how big or small they are, today’s businesses need to be smarter to compete. As a result, some businesses have begun to utilize data management platforms (DMP) in order to put themselves in a better position to understand their business, their market, and their customers. Let’s take a look at the DMP, and how it works to help businesses like yours be more effective.

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Social Media Can Help and Hurt Any Business

In many ways, social media is the defining characteristic of the information age. It has transformed the way people communicate, market their products and services, and it has brought a litany of issues into the public consciousness. On the other side of the coin, social media currently costs many business billions of dollars a year in lost productivity. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of social media, and how your business can put yourself in a net-positive position regarding the technology.

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How Automation Rejuvenates Productivity

There are some cases where productivity is a challenge, especially in the case where you’re being asked to work on something repetitive or monotonous. To make these tasks more bearable, automation solutions can be used. Although, depending on the purpose, they can become an integral part of your business’ productivity strategy.

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Tip of the Week: How to Calculate the ROI of Anything

All businesses are part of their respective markets, and depending on that market, the business will implement technology solutions designed to help them best cater to their business. However, you should only implement technology that can yield a satisfactory return on investment, or ROI. We’re here to help you get the most return on your investment as possible.

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A.I. Growth and Data Analysis

If machine learning is one of those technologies that you keep hearing about, but don’t quite know exactly what it is, you aren’t alone. Most people only know that it has something to do with A.I. Some of the most successful businesses in the world are using machine learning, and its artificially intelligent capabilities to improve their offering or effectiveness. Today, we will begin to explain what exactly machine learning is and how it is beginning to work for businesses just like yours.

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The Future of IT; 2019 is The Year Your Business Hires a Managed Service Provider

Chances are that if you are a business owner that has been in business for a decade you’ve seen how emerging technologies have changed the face of business. Technologies like cloud computing have opened up opportunities for many businesses to get the powerful computing infrastructures they need without massive upfront costs. As this trend continues, the IT services has begun to move past core IT management and support and onto providing real solutions for the modern business. Today, we will look at how the Managed Service Provider (MSP) is at the forefront of a data revolution that has no end in sight.

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Can You Stay Productive In the Face of Constant Distraction?

The modern office is filled with distractions, and that’s to say nothing about the everyday user’s life. With so many devices and notifications interrupting focus for users all over the world, it’s more important than ever before to have a strategy for how to deal with these issues and become as productive as possible in the workplace. Today, we’ll be discussing some of the biggest distractions in the workplace and how your employees can overcome them.

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What To Do When You’ve Had Enough of Your Broken Technology

Chances are that you’ve dealt with the following scenario: You are working along fine and you try to open an application only to be rebuked by an error message on the screen that tells you that there is some type of critical error. You close that out hoping that it was a one-time exception, but nope, it pops up again. You think to yourself, “Why does this always happen?”

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Strategizing Your IT Leads to Better Business

Business technology continues to grow in importance for the small and medium-sized business, especially as many prepare for 2019. Where enterprise-level companies have long been using technology to bring people together and drive overall productivity, many SMBs are new to these opportunities. The availability of cloud resources, coupled with shifts in security, mobility, and other core technologies, makes it important for every organization, no matter what size, to have a comprehensive technology strategy.

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3 Backup Nightmares You Don’t Want to Happen to You

Your business needs to have data backup and disaster recovery, period. There is no exception to this rule. The hard truth of the matter is that your business is risking far too much by not implementing data backup and disaster recovery. Today, we’ll examine scenarios in which a business might find its data threatened, as well as how modern businesses can keep their data safe, even when the world seems out to get them.

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Signs That Your Business Needs to Upgrade Your Crucial IT

Chances are if you are in business today, there are a lot of devices on your network that you haven’t touched in years, might not be using, or don’t even need. Unfortunately, there are times when the technology you have doesn’t really do much other than take up space. If you feel like you are spending too much on your technology, you may not be wrong. By finding the IT that helps your business do business better, and scrapping plans for implementing technology that doesn’t provide sustainable returns may be a good strategy.

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Human Error is a Major Problem for Businesses

There is always going to be user error in the workplace. Even the best workers make mistakes sometimes. You naturally want to reduce these occurrences as often as possible, but for the purposes of training and whatnot, you want to assume the worst: that any worker, even the most dedicated veteran, could potentially make a business-ending mistake. Thankfully, there are ways you can make sure this doesn’t happen for your business.

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Instant Messaging Is a Valuable Tool for Businesses

Once thought to just be a cool feature of the Internet--or the entirety of the Internet to your Great Aunt Maddie--instant messaging has a long history on the web. In fact, one could argue that it was the first great Internet-based application. Today, we take a look back at the history of Instant Messaging and how your organization can use it to create a better business.

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A Busy Staff Isn’t Always a Productive Staff

Productivity is one of the most vital parts of running a business, as without it no work can get done. Even if your employees look like they are keeping themselves busy, a study from the Harvard Business School suggests they may not be as busy as you think they are. How does this work, and what can you do to resolve this issue?

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Tip of the Week: Lead Your Remote Workers to Success

Organizations that have a workforce outside of their normal office location are presented with a unique challenge. In the case of remote employees, businesses have to figure out how to keep them connected to the workplace, productive with their time, and part of the organization’s culture. This week’s tip is dedicated to helping your organization’s remote workers become more successful--or, specifically, how you can help them be successful.

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You Won’t Get This Kind of Personalized Care From Break-Fix IT

It’s nice to do something and feel good that you’re the one doing the work. This DIY approach provides you the satisfaction that you’re doing the job yourself, and that you’re doing it right. If you’re the kind of person who gets nervous about others handling tasks, you fully understand how stressful it can be to have someone you don’t know or trust working on important initiatives; particularly working with your company’s technology.

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Is Unplugging From Technology a Good Idea While On Vacation?

Vacations are an important part of maintaining one’s sanity, especially if you’re a business owner. However, unless you have a reliable staff that can handle the management of your business, chances are that you might feel like you can’t get away from the office long enough to relax. While it might seem tempting to disconnect yourself from the office entirely while on vacation, it’s actually better for your business if you don’t.

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Engage Your Workforce to Increase Happiness, Work Satisfaction, and Productivity

Business owners need to understand that employee engagement is just as important a part of running an organization, as keeping operations running at optimal efficiency. After all, your employees are the ones responsible for keeping everything moving forward, and if they’re not happy and fulfilled, it can affect the quality of your end product or service. A new study finds that even businesses that have good intentions about employee engagement have trouble guaranteeing that their efforts are effective.

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An Astounding 50% of IT Projects End in Failure

How did your last major IT initiative turn out? Were you able to get what you wanted implemented in an orderly fashion, or did it fail to provide a return on investment? You might be surprised to hear that half of the IT projects implemented by businesses ultimately wind up as a failure, and these numbers have been increasing over the past several years.

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Microsoft Now Pushing Into the Technology as a Service Market

One of Microsoft’s latest moves to appeal to business owners has been to establish a Technology as a Service program, allowing small businesses to purchase Surface products, accessories, and support by subscribing to a monthly payment plan. What’s more, when time comes to upgrade, customers can do so, although some fees may apply as dictated by the lease.

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Outsource Your IT to the Pros and Stop Doing IT the Hard Way

How often does your technology experience trouble? If your business is constantly dealing with technical hiccups, your assets that are meant to be a boon to your organization, can quickly become a nuisance that holds you back. How can you take better care of your technology, and use it to usher in a new era of productivity?

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Tip of the Week: 4 Ways to Get Rest and Avoid Burnout

Let’s be honest; when was the last time you seriously went out of your way to take a day off from work? The corporate business environment often leads both business owners and normal office workers to overindulge themselves in their work. Plus, the mobile-first business model isn’t making it any easier to take time off, as you’re connected to the office no matter what. However, science is proving that it’s not just beneficial, but practically necessary, to take time off on occasion.

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Tip of the Week: Successful Remote Workers Swear By These 4 Rules

With today’s great technology solutions, working remotely is no longer just a dream. Many businesses have either a partial or a complete remote staff, and it’s all held together by modern technology solutions. However, even with the latest tech, the remote worker still has to invest in their own success.

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Microsoft Makes Windows 10 Enterprise Affordable for SMBs By Charging Monthly

Businesses used to paying up front for Windows may be surprised to learn that the newest offering by Microsoft, Windows 10 Enterprise edition, will have a monthly charge. For some organizations, this move may be enough for them to rethink how they buy and manage their software.

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Tip of the Week: How to Craft an Irresistible Email Subject Line

We think that it’s safe to say that nobody enjoys their inbox receiving incredulous amounts of emails on a regular basis. Yet, the business owner must maintain their inbox every day, and if a message doesn’t strike them as important, they’ll probably either ignore it or delete it completely. Here’s how you can prevent this from happening.

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Tip of the Week: Interviewing for a Remote Position? Ask These 5 Questions

Modern office technology is breaking down office barriers left and right. With the proper tools, workers can perform their daily duties anytime, anywhere. This trend is prompting businesses to hire remote workers in order to find the talent they need without being limited by geographical location. Unfortunately, finding a good candidate for a remote worker is easier said than done.

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4 Ways Stress Can Be Good (and Bad) for Your Business

Stress is one of those things that you can’t escape, no matter how hard you try, and it can takes a toll on your workday. Despite this, there are (surprisingly) some redeeming factors to stress to be considered.

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Tip of the Week: Save Time and Money By Ditching the Commute

For many workers, driving to and from the office is a way of life. In view of this, many have commuted for so long that they can’t imagine life without this daily drive. Despite commuting being the norm, employers and employees alike will gain substantial benefits by ditching the practice altogether. Today’s technology puts this goal within reach.

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3 Considerations Every Business Owner Must Make When Implementing a BYOD Policy

Bring Your Own Device, or BYOD, has become an accepted practice in the workplace, but only when it’s implemented properly. The fact remains that allowing workers to use their personal devices for work purposes has its benefits and disadvantages, and that you should only allow them to do so after they adhere to your company’s BYOD policy. Of course, this assumes that you actually have a policy, so let’s talk about how to set up a quality BYOD policy.

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Is it Time to Rethink the 8-Hour Workday?

How many hours a day do you work? Chances are that, as a business owner, you put in more than the average worker. Your team might put in the requisite eight hours, but you might find yourself putting in more. After all, working more hours means more productivity, right? Well… wrong. A recent study shows that eight hours of work, while revolutionary 200 years ago, is still too long to expect good work from your employees.

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Tip of the Week: Make Your Workplace More Flexible With These 4 Technologies

There’s no denying that flexibility is important. While technology makes it easier than ever before to communicate and work anytime, anywhere, employees should be encouraged to use this flexibility to their advantage. Yet, it’s often quite easy to fall victim to the many pitfalls of flexibility, which is why it’s so important to invest in solutions designed to maximize productivity.

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Tip of the Week: Avoid Unpleasant Surprises When Moving to a New Office

So you’ve outgrown your office space and need to relocate. Congratulations on reaching this milestone with your business, but do you know what to look for in a new building? Finding the perfect setup can be daunting, especially if you don’t know what to look for. To help you out, here are four tips to make your transition easier.

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Tip of the Week: Maximize Productivity By Listening to the Right Music

Nowadays, with streaming services like Spotify, Google Play, and Pandora available on a plethora of mobile devices, music lovers have an easy time enjoying tunes everywhere they go, including at the office. While this is all well and good, have you ever stopped to wonder if music is helping your employees, or holding them back?

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Keeping Your Technology Up to Date May Be the Best Way to Retain Millennial Employees

Whether you like it or not, millennials (those reaching young adulthood around the year 2000) make up a significant portion of the workforce. Appropriately leveraging their skills is going to become a big part of succeeding as a business, but millennials are known for their tendency to hop from job to job as opportunity calls. How can you keep your top millennial talent from jumping ship? You can start by offering the latest technologies.

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How Businesses Doing IT the Old Fashioned Way are Losing Money

Technology has been ingrained into today’s society to the point where businesses can’t function without it. Your organization relies on servers, networks, and workstations to keep productive and access important information, but all of this technology saddles your business with the responsibility of maintaining the components, as well as budget challenges.

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Tip of the Week: 7 Easy Ways to Encourage Collaboration in the Workplace

One of the most effective methods to boost employee productivity is to encourage your workforce to work together in order to achieve their goals. Workplace collaboration allows multiple employees to combine their efforts and energies into a common project, adding value to the final product and often completing it more quickly. The benefits don’t end there, either. Here are some of the other advantages gained by encouraging collaboration among your workforce.

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Tip of the Week: 4 Ways to Attract Top Talent to Your Company

The ultimate goal of any business is to increase the volume of services it provides its clients in order to reap larger profits, as is likely the goal of your business as well. Perhaps you have been successful in attracting new clients, but if you wish to continue to experience such growth, then you’ll need to also attract quality employees.

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What’s a User to Do When Their Device’s Manufacturer Goes Under?

Business is a fickle thing, as acquisitions can be the end of both major and minor vendors. This can also lead to the untimely demise of some of your partnerships with these companies. Take, for example, a recent acquisition by Fitbit, which acquired a former Kickstarter project Pebble, showing the world that these types of acquisitions can be major problems for consumers.

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Tip of the Week: 3 Workplace Changes You Can Make to Improve Productivity

With so much focus on how new technology improves productivity, it can be easy to overlook the other ways of enhancing operations. Sometimes, improving productivity can be as simple as rethinking the layout of your office. Or, you may find that your company’s current technologies may be hindering productivity more than they’re helping. The following three suggestions should help make your office a more productive place.

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Why Managed IT Makes Sense for Busy Business Owners

Managed services have been around for ages. For example, wealthy individuals will often hire someone to take care of their extravagant home, like doing the housework or tending to the garden. Did you know that managed services can be acquired by the average business owner to further enhance their organization’s operations?

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What’s the Secret to Engaging Gen Y Workers?

Fact: Millennials are entering the workforce en masse. Therefore, employers and workers from earlier generations shouldn’t be so quick to write off the generation that now makes up the largest segment of the workforce. In order to properly leverage this differently-thinking group, managers need to understand a few things about how Gen Y thinks, behaves, and what they value.

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You’ve Got Better Things to Do Than Manage Technology Vendors

As the business owner, are you the only person in your office who manages your company’s vendor relationships? Chances are that this is a huge responsibility, and one that consumes a significant portion of your time. While communicating with vendors is important for resolving issues or learning more about the service offered, it’s still a pain that you shouldn’t have to deal with.

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Tip of the Week: Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your IT Consultant

Budgeting accurately for your long-term IT needs requires an intimate knowledge about technology and IT trends. Compared to other department budgets that are easy to compile by making a few simple adjustments to the previous year’s numbers, your IT budget must take into account the depreciation of your IT equipment for replacement purposes, as well as the cost of procuring the new, cutting-edge solutions that are shaping your industry. Do you have the technical knowledge to come up with an accurate IT budget? If you don’t, you’ll want to employ the services of an IT consultant.

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Use this Tested Formula to Improve Employee Loyalty

There’s an undeniable connection between success and emotional attachment. Marketers know this, which is why you see so many commercials meant to manipulate your heartstrings. The point of these stirring advertisements is to engage consumers on a deeper level, and thus, create brand loyalty. It stands to reason that the same strategy can be applied to retaining and engaging your employees.

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How Cross-Training Employees Makes Your Entire Company Stronger

No one said business was going to be easy. One of the most frustrating aspects can be employee complacency. In fact, with the advent of the Internet and with more jobs trending toward service, you are finding that people are constantly looking outside their current organization for professional development. With employee turnover costing businesses everywhere substantial capital, retaining your proficient employees must be a priority.

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Be the Hero Your Office Needs By Having a Disaster Recovery Plan

Not all companies are prepared to deal with the costs associated with downtime. Any situation in which your organization cannot access important information or can’t operate with efficiency is something which needs to be prepared for; otherwise, you risk more than you know. We want to help protect your business when it needs it most.

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Need New Computer Hardware But Lack the Capital? You’ve Got Options

How often do you look at a workstation in your office and say, “Wow, I should replace that soon!” Old equipment is vulnerable to all sorts of performance issues, and if you wait too long to replace it, you might be dealing with troublesome downtime and wasted capital. Plus, older hardware is often harder and more expensive to replace. Thankfully, there’s a service that’s capable of changing the way that you procure new hardware, including workstations, server units, network components, and so much more.

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Is Your IT Staff Stressed? Here’s How We Can Help

The purpose of an internal IT department is, in theory, twofold: first, they are supposed to strategize a future for the company’s information technology, with the secondary responsibility of troubleshooting and tending to the technological issues a business faces. However, the reality is that many IT departments find themselves with no time to innovate, as they are swamped under service requests for technical issues.

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Scenarios Every Business Continuity Plan Should Cover

What would you do if your business were suddenly struck by something which threatened its very existence? Do you have a plan to make sure that your business survives well past the expiration date assigned by natural disasters, hardware failure, user error, or hacking attacks? One of the most important parts of running a business is managing risk, and implementing a business continuity plan is a great way to focus on the preservation of your organization.

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Who You Sit Next to Makes You More or Less Productive, Study Finds

It turns out that the old adage “iron sharpens iron” is true and it applies to the modern workplace. This, according to a new study by Harvard Business Review, which found that the productivity of a worker can be enhanced by an average of ten percent simply by having them be in close proximity to someone who’s more productive than they are.

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Tip of the Week: 8 Essential Questions to Ask of Your IT Provider

When was the last time that your organization had an unexpected technology expense blast your IT budget out of the sky? Surprise issues that you don’t plan for could potentially derail your budget for months, or even years, depending on the severity of it. Having a clear idea of what your IT service plan covers is a great way to make sure that you don’t get hit by surprise billing.

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4 Money-Saving Measures Any Business Owner Can Implement

Unless you’re at the helm of a Fortune 500 company, it’s likely that you’re always on the lookout for new ways to save money by tweaking your company’s operations. When you’re in money-saving mode, you understand that even a small change can rack up a lot in savings. To help you in your quest to save money, consider implementing these four practices.

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How a Haphazard Approach to IT Only Creates More Problems

We have been very fortunate to assist many organizations, and this experience has given us a certain perspective of how many businesses approach their technology maintenance. We often work with new businesses to audit the performance of their IT. We’ve found that small businesses tend to have more issues and are susceptible to bigger vulnerabilities. These aren’t networks that go ignored either--many of them currently pay for an “expert” to support them.

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The Future of Business is One Without Cash

Today’s businesses are looking to expand their cashless payment options to include those made through mobile devices. Doing so, can provide your organization with a variety of benefits. 

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This World Backup Day, Stop Testing Your Luck and Back it Up!

No business owner likes to think about it, but every business needs to be prepared for the possibility of their data disappearing. Have you taken steps to ensure that, should some disaster strike, you will be prepared to dust yourself off and continue operations? Furthermore, are you sure that your preparations will be sufficient and your data will be preserved?

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This World Backup Day, Don’t Get Caught Without a Plan

Having access to your company’s data is absolutely crucial to your success. After all, in today’s day and age, it is an extraordinarily important aspect of your business’ sustainability. Everything you do is influenced in some way by the data you have generated and/or collected--so what would you do if it was suddenly gone?

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How to Turn Intrapreneurs Into a Goldmine of Good Ideas

Entrepreneurs enjoy an almost mythical standing in the business world as visionary leaders risking everything on an idea that, if successful, pays off in a big way. Yet, few understand the role of the intrapreneur; those who have equally big ideas, but operate in the context of established companies. Your business likely has dynamic intrapreneurs in your midst, but how do you make sure their voices are heard?

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Budget Feeling Restrictive? Here’s How Managed IT Can Help

As more and more businesses rely on technology solutions to accomplish their everyday tasks, there is a natural expectation for there to be a bit of a learning curve as these advanced solutions are prioritized and accounted for. However, a few industry research firms have compiled their expectations for how this learning curve tendency will influence the needs and challenges businesses will face during the rest of the year.

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3 Ways Managed IT Keeps Your Business in Business

In the natural course of doing business, an owner/operator will have to face many difficult situations, but none of these situations are as difficult as asking them to determine whether or not to close the doors of the business for good. Many problems could cause a business to fail, but it has to hurt the failing owner a little more when the solution for the problem was not only within his/her reach, it was affordable.

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