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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.

Experts Can Make or Break a Technology Implementation

When it comes to implementing new technology solutions for your business, there is always a desire to solve some sort of problem. Maybe you are not as productive as you would like to be, or perhaps there is an operational inefficiency that you hope to address or streamline through the use of the technology. Either way, the end result is the same; you are trying to make progress and move forward, not over-complicate your infrastructure.

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How Technology Helps You Build a Better Business

In today’s competitive business environment, you need every edge you can get to one-up your competition and make waves in your chosen industry. One of the best ways you can do so is by strategically implementing technology solutions that can enhance or transform the way your business operates both internally and externally.

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3 Critical IT Processes that Modern Businesses Need

With businesses relying so much on technology to accomplish just about everything, IT undoubtedly has an important role to play. It makes sense that you would want your business’ IT to deliver as much value as possible. To accomplish this, we wanted to go over three IT-centric processes that are primed to help you do so.

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What You Need to Do to Keep Your IT Projects from Failing

The process of implementing new technology for your business can be a tiresome, frustrating, and confusing process. This is especially the case when you implement a new technology solution only to find that it was absolutely not worth the effort. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why your IT project deployment might not go according to plan, as well as how you can make sure this does not happen for your company.

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Four IT Mistakes that Your Small Business Can’t Afford to Make

Small businesses often struggle with technology, primarily because they either lack strong IT leadership or they lack the resources to ensure IT maintenance and management happens without a hitch. There are several mistakes that a small business can make when it comes to technology management. Here are four of the biggest and most common that you absolutely cannot afford to make.

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What Are You Going to Do When Disaster Strikes?

When we are talking about the continuity of your business, we typically use the colloquialism “disaster” for just about anything that could put the brakes on your business’ ability to do business. But what happens when that “disaster” is an actual disaster and threatens to derail your business completely? Today, we take a look at some disaster preparedness tips that can quite literally save your business from ruin. 

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New Study Shows the True Potential for a Shorter Work Week

Have you ever wondered what would happen if we reduced the number of hours in the work week or shaved off an hour here or there during the workday? The discussion of a reduced or shorter work week is a common topic in productivity circles, but a new study performed by Iceland has created even more buzz with its astounding results.

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No Matter Your Needs, Managed IT Can Be Beneficial for Your Business

All businesses have different goals when it comes to developing their IT infrastructure. While some might struggle just making ends meet with important maintenance, others might decide that it’s time to branch out and try innovative new solutions to take their infrastructures to the next level. We want to make one thing clear; both situations are perfectly fine, so long as you are willing to accept that you could always be doing things better, and today is the perfect time to take the next steps.

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Proactive Remote Maintenance is the Key to Success Long-Term

Many businesses struggle with IT maintenance and management. Maybe they don’t have the resources to perform in-house maintenance due to a lack of funding and, consequently, the inability to hire full-time technicians. Maybe they believe that their technology is perfectly fine as is and doesn’t require regular maintenance. We’re here to burst that bubble; you should always have maintenance at the top of mind, and in today’s business environment, there is no excuse not to.

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How Managed IT Services Can Benefit Your Business’ Bottom Line

For many businesses, despite the incredible benefits that technology can provide, it is often a source of great stress. This is especially true for the small business owner, who often has much more restrictive parameters to work with, such as a limited budget, workforce, and even the workspace or office. How can organizations like yours stay competitive against companies that have so many more resources available to them? One answer, in terms of technology management, is managed services.

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Use These 3 Services to Boost IT Efficiency

Efficiency is king in the business world. In order to reach optimal productivity, organizations are always aiming to prevent operational issues, eliminate unnecessary costs, and cut down on anything that keeps them from reaching their goals. Technology is a major tool in this effort, offering solutions that can enhance productivity, automate processes, facilitate collaboration, and maintain critical systems. All of this and more can be done by working with a great IT services provider.

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A Solid Mobile Device Strategy Needs These 3 Components

It’s no surprise that mobile technology has infiltrated the workplace in more ways than one. Many businesses issue company-owned devices to their employees to get work done while out of the office, while others allow employees to bring their own devices, or use their own laptops and smartphones for fulfilling their day-to-day duties. That being said, it’s important to remember that mobile devices need to be managed in a very specific way to maintain security.

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The Components of a Successful Business Continuity Strategy

With the future so uncertain, it’s no surprise that many organizations are turning their focus toward business continuity. There are a lot of components that go into making a successful continuity plan, and if you want to optimize your chances of survival in the face of a disaster, you need to ensure that all your bases are covered.

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Building Trust in Business with a Consistent Approach

For a worker, one of the most maddening things that can happen at work is when there is a lack of consistency with the leadership. It can throw a figurative wrench into everything that you are trying to accomplish. Some examples of people not being consistent include:

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We’re Going to Get You Out of the Technology Rut

Is the technology your business relies upon composed of bits and pieces of tech you’ve incorporated gradually over the years? While all of your computers and devices may work, are they actually working for you? Your investment into IT was supposed to make your staff more productive—is it, or has it plateaued?

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Managed Services Isn’t Just IT Support

Managed IT services are well known for being an incredibly useful service for a business as it helps offset the cost of keeping their technology up and running. What they aren’t as well known for are all the other services that they do to add value for their customers. 

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Remote Work is Not Without Its Issues… How Can They Be Addressed?

The COVID-19 pandemic brought with it no small amount of uncertainty, including amongst business owners who were looking at a very up-in-the-air future. With so many lacking the technology needed to support remote operations—never mind the fact that remote work was a new concept for so many—the learning curve was a considerable hurdle. However, with vaccines being administered and restrictions lifted, it now becomes critical to find a balance.

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Productivity in a Very Difficult Time

Some people may say that operational efficiency and productivity are only measures of how well managers are able to manage. Make no mistake about it, productivity is important to workers, too. When COVID-19 spurred lawmakers to create stay-at-home orders in March of 2020, the fear was that productivity would decrease so much that it would destroy society. This obviously didn’t happen, but there has been some ebb and flow of the productivity metrics since the beginning of the pandemic. Let’s take a look at productivity during COVID-19.

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IT Service Checklist for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses

Most business owners that rely on their IT have heard about managed It services. Many already subscribe to some form of outsourced IT service. It is one of the best ways to cut down your business’ operational costs while gaining value through the use of services that, if they were to be purchased intermittently, would cost a lot more. Today, we thought we’d list some of the most important variables you should consider if you are looking to choose a managed IT services provider.

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Why You Need to Consider Managed IT Now More Than Ever

For most of the past years small business owners have been raked over the coals as dealing with sudden economic and political shifts isn’t often great on the budget. In fact, many businesses haven’t made it this far. If yours has, you are almost certainly looking for value in every business investment that you make. There are few investments that you can make for your business that carry more value than managed IT services. Today, we’ll tell you how.

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How Your Business’ IT Future Has Changed in the Past Year

With so much confusion, crisis, and conflict happening over the past year, businesses of all sizes have turned to technology as a necessary means of remaining open. As a result, the perspective many these businesses have of their IT has shifted considerably. Let’s explore some of the revelations that organizations have had, and how they’ll impact operations from this point on.

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The Right IT Can Be a Real Moneymaker for Your Business

All businesses, in some way, shape, or form, exist to generate revenue—whether their profits are retained for their own benefit or dedicated to supporting some other cause. Either way, this balance makes the difference between the investments a business makes and the return these investments see a critical consideration. By using modern technology, today’s organizations can tip this balance to be more in their favor.

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Accounting Firms are Finding Their IT Overtaxed

With tax season quickly reaching its crescendo, accountants and CPAs face increased threats to their data security. Your clients' financial information is too good for a cybercriminal to pass up. Now is the time to prepare yourself to fight a cyberattack. Learn how managed IT can support your business in a variety of ways.

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3 Tips to Help You Make Better IT Decisions

Making solid business decisions can sometimes be confusing. Not that you try to make anything other than good decisions, but a lot of business is, and has always been, trial and error; and, you may know this from experience, error happens to be a big part of it. Today, we thought we would discuss what goes into good technology decisions and how many times it comes down to the results. 

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How AI Can Be Used to Make Your Business More Efficient

Out of all the technologies that have been introduced into the mainstream over the last few years, artificial intelligence—or AI—leads the pack in terms of innovation. Far from the science fiction of autonomous machines bent on the extinction of humanity, AI is now found in many examples of beneficial software. Let’s consider some ways that businesses can now use AI to their considerable advantage.

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Significant IT Challenges for 2021

2020 was… well, 2020… so it really isn’t any surprise that those businesses that made it to 2021 aren’t quite out of the woods yet. The many difficulties and challenges that 2020 brought will carry over into this year, many of them pertaining to information technology and how businesses utilize it. Let’s take a few moments to anticipate how these IT challenges will manifest this year.

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Is Your Business Ready to Return to “Normal”?

The rollout of vaccinations have brought many businesses the hope of returning to normalcy, to a time before COVID-19 was the driving factor in how they ran their business. However, the reality is, most companies will not be returning to pre-coronavirus operations; the “new” normal is just the norm now. Your team and customers have adapted to the way things are done now, not the way they were done before.  

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COVID-19 Clouds More than Christmas Plans

Today is Christmas day. In normal years, you would be bundling up to go to visit family and friends or preparing to host them.

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Managed IT Can Change the Way Your Business Functions

Technology has made its way into nearly every business, especially in 2020 with all that has been going on. There really is no choice, but with the commitment to technology there comes risk. If technology fails, your business takes a step back. Today, we will discuss how managed IT services work to manage your risk and keep your IT running effectively. 

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To Improve Collaboration Consider These 3 Variables

The modern business should be prioritizing its collaborative capabilities. After all, the benefits of collaboration include increased quality in products and services and customer service alike, all the while cutting costs. Of course, you may have already attempted to incorporate collaborative practices, but for some reason, they didn’t take. Let’s consider a few reasons that might have been the case.

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Listening to Your Team is a Great Way to Overcome Business Challenges

While it sounds like a term that only applies to the person with the fanciest title in an organization, business leadership is an important quality for people to demonstrate at all levels. However, when you are the boss, it becomes important that you encourage this comprehensive business leadership amongst your team. Here are a few key questions you should be asking regularly to communicate this responsibility to your team members.

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Where Is Your Business Going Next?

Many business owners understand the benefits that technology can have for a business, but just can’t bring themselves to commit to implementing that technology due to the cost, either in capital expenditures or in the shift in operations. The fear of not being able to successfully integrate certain technology will, over time, hold your business back. Today, we’ll describe why it’s essential to have a technology strategy, and how to stick to it. 

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Businesses Need Data Backup to Manage Risk

If there is one thing we tell every would-be client of ours, it is that it is essential that they secure their data with a comprehensive backup and recovery system. This is not to make our lives easier or to sell products, it is a fact, and said strictly for their own benefit. Even the smallest organizations need protection against situations that could put all their staff’s hard work in jeopardy. Let’s take a look at why backup is so important.

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IT Help Desk Can Be Incredibly Valuable

Every business has the occasional computer problem. Like any other machine it needs constant maintenance to work as intended. When you are working in a productive environment, IT problems can really damage your business’ ability to conduct business. One solution to what seems like endless computer issues is the presence of an IT support help desk. Let’s take a look at a couple of benefits that having a help desk solution in place can have for a small business. 

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Professional Services are Getting a Technology Makeover

Professional services include some of the oldest professions in the world, and some of the newest. Regardless of what kind of professional services business you run, it is hard to continue to meet your customer’s needs without incorporating some technological changes. Furthermore, there are new innovations that can help your business thrive. Let’s examine some of this technology to see if it could benefit your business.

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What to Do If Your Business Can’t Work Remotely?

We often discuss the “new normal” for businesses post-coronavirus and focus on the need for organizations to update their businesses to continue to complete and, most importantly, remain operational during the lockdown, most notably remote workers. However, the reality is there are many businesses that can’t readily take advantage of a remote workforce, due to the nature of their business. Here are some tips to help your business thrive, even if you aren’t able to take advantage of remote work.

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How Have Businesses and Their Technology Been Impacted by COVID-19?

There is no question that the COVID-19 pandemic has had no small impact on the way that business is conducted. A considerable part of that impact is directed toward the technology that powers these businesses. One way or another, the way that businesses use their technology is bound to be influenced before all this is over.

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How Likely Is It for Remote Work to Continue?

Remote work has been crucial to many businesses as they work to sustain themselves throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. However, as businesses have adopted these new methods of operation, it has become clear that remote work is likely to be much more than a survival tactic moving forward. Let’s look to a recent survey to see how remote work is influencing these businesses.

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Businesses Need to Use Automation to Adapt

Let’s be real. For most small businesses during this period, it’s been extremely difficult.  If you were somehow able to sustain operations during this time, you most likely had to make some serious alterations to the way that you normally do things. Today, we’re going to take a look at some of the technologies that you probably already have, and how you can change the way you use them to benefit your business as concerns spike over COVID-19. 

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Collaboration Spans Multiple Apps

The improvement in technology directly contributes to the amount of productivity business sees. One place this is evident is in the way in which businesses use collaboration tools to move business forward. Let’s take a brief look at what exactly we mean by collaboration tools and how they benefit the businesses that use them. 

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The Extreme Changes Businesses Have to Make to Survive COVID-19

For the months that COVID-19 has been around, everyone has done all they can to hold on to their business. They have closed down, they have closed their offices and forced their employees to work from home, they have borrowed money and scaled back or eliminated their 2020 plans. It would be nice if all that sacrifice would pay off, but the frustrating reality is that there is going to be a lot of sustained discomfort for a lot of business owners. Let’s take a look at some things small business owners should consider as they reopen their businesses. 

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How To Prepare Your Business for Post-Coronavirus

Things are still very up in the air when it comes to the pandemic and New York state’s reopening. At the time of writing this, most of Upstate NY is entering Phase 4. That said, social distancing and contact-free interactions will most likely be with us for some time. Is your business ready to conduct business in a post-coronavirus world?

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These Types of Applications Can Improve Workplace Productivity

Productivity is—generally speaking—the core goal of any modern software solution. Today, we wanted to go over a few tools that can boost your productivity and efficiency right now.

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Three Services Your Business Needs, Post-Coronavirus

As businesses slowly open up, they’re finding that their customers and staff have begun to expect certain levels of interactions in response to the coronavirus. When it comes to keeping your business competitive, you need to embrace the clear delineation between how businesses operated pre- and post-coronavirus. What was once temporary has become the new normal. The question is, are you still running your business using the old business model?

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How to Optimize Your IT Costs with the Help of an MSP

A business’ budget is the biggest authority over it. As a result, each business needs to spend some time adjusting their operational investments to put itself in the best position to reach its goals… a process that a managed service provider’s help can make much simpler. Let’s review some ways that an MSP can help a business get that much more out of its investment into its IT.

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Reopen Your Business with Confidence

As the COVID-19 pandemic rolls on, many businesses continue to operate remotely with an eye toward reopening their office soon. Today, we thought it would be a perfect time to go over a couple of things that small business owners will need to address as people begin coming back into the workplace. 

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Business Improvements to Consider as You Resume Operations

Businesses are now in the process of reopening. While there are sure to be growing pains and setbacks, this also provides an opportunity for these businesses to make many adjustments and improvements to how they operate. As you reignite your operations (or make the preparations to), it will help to do so with the support of modern technology and the processes it enables.

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IT Training That Is Sure to Get the Desired Effect

A business without well-trained employees is one that is always on the precipice of disaster. With the threat landscape the way it is, you need your staff to know how to properly maneuver around company IT and you need to ensure they know how to protect themselves and the company in a digital environment. Today, we will take a look at some strategies to promote end-to-end security at your company.

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How the Right Technology Can Help SMBs Reopen Safely

Many small businesses in the United States—most, actually—are in a catch-22 of sorts due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While reopening too soon could contribute to a resurgence in infection rates, there is also a very real risk associated with reopening too late. To help avoid either scenario, the right technology solutions will prove to be indispensable.

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Avoid Burning Out While Working From Home

A lot has been made about the newly-remote workforce that has been doing their best during the COVID-19 pandemic. One issue that many ignore is burnout. Sure, it happens in the office too, but there is something unsettling about getting up and going to work walking distance from your bed. Today, we will take a look at at-home worker burnout and give you a few tips to help you keep from suffering the same fate. 

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We Need to Flatten the Curve of Cybersecurity Risk

People have been examining the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting economic and social shutdown from every angle. Unfortunately, some of those people took it as the opportunity they’ve been waiting for to try and steal data and in some cases money from unprotected and unprepared people and businesses online. Let’s examine how the events surrounding COVID-19 have had an effect on cybercrime.

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VoIP Is a Complete Game Changer

Businesses of all types rely on their telephone systems. Today, there is an option that can revolutionize any business’ communications platform, and do so for a fraction of the cost of a traditional telephone system. Today, we’ll take a look at VoiP and why it’s such a good option for your business.

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Why Managed Service Providers are Your Best IT Support Option

Managed services have quickly become the most reasonable option for businesses of any size to use, and based on what we’ve seen recently, will soon be the only real option for most operations. However, when considering the managed service option, you need to make sure you find a provider with the following capabilities and service offerings:

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For Many Businesses, Working From Home Might Stick

Skipping the commute, wearing comfortable pants, and foregoing everyday office distractions has become the new norm during the COVID-19 pandemic, but it’s very likely that the businesses that do well with a remote workforce might continue to keep operating that way even after we’re all able to see each other again.

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Cutting Costs Doesn’t Mean Sacrificing Support

If you’re trying to minimize your operating costs to improve your budget, it is important to keep in mind that sacrifice isn’t your only option. Instead, you also have the option of streamlining and minimizing some of your larger expenses by enlisting a managed services provider and the more sustainable business model we adhere to.

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How to (And How Not to) Approach Remote Work

Many businesses are currently finding the best course of action for them to take right now for the good of their employees is to adopt remote work policies. However, this puts a lot of responsibility on the employees to conduct themselves appropriately and spend the time they should be working diligently.

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It’s Time to Rebuild Your Business Continuity Process

Every business needs a continuity plan (BCP) so that if their business is forced to deal with problems that arise for any reason, that they have a working plan to get the business back up and operating as intended quickly. It’s one thing to have it all written down on paper, outlining how things are supposed to go, and quite another thing to have a working strategy when faced with operational interruptions. Today, we’ll go through some of the basics of business continuity to help you understand all that goes into a successful plan. 

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Communication Practices to Keep Everyone on the Same Page

A lot of people have been working from home for the better part of a month, but the rise of the remote worker was happening long before the COVID-19 outbreak demanded people work from home. Today, business owners that wouldn’t typically be in favor of a remote workforce are starting to come around as they see comparable productivity and less overhead costs than normal. With their remote workforce doing pretty well, one problem that these business owners are seeing is periodic miscommunication. Let’s take a look how to improve your company’s remote communications with technology you probably already have access to. 

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Rethinking Your Budget for a New Reality

With the COVID-19 outbreak forcing businesses into unenviable situations, it’s probably not surprising that business owners and decision makers are looking at what expenses they need to cut in order to keep their businesses afloat. Today, we’ll discuss the trends we are seeing and how managed IT services can be a godsend in situations like this.

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How to Achieve Productivity while Working Remotely

Productivity is a concept that has long been viewed as the gold standard in businesses. However, with so many businesses currently transferring to remote operations in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic, it can be challenging for all involved to work as productively as they would while in the office. On the other side of the coin, the right behaviors can make it quite effective. 

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If Your Business Isn’t Considered ‘Essential’ You Need to do This

New York State, along with many others, have mandated a stay at home order as part of their social distancing policy. As such, most businesses have to close in response to the coronavirus crisis. There are, however, 12 business sectors which are exempt from this order, and can remain open because they are considered essential. Do you know if your business is considered essential? Read on to learn more.

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What are Tech Industry Giants Doing About COVID-19?

While COVID-19 has largely dominated the public awareness and created huge shifts and interruptions to businesses of all sizes, small businesses have clearly been impacted the most--essential and non-essential businesses alike. Of course, this doesn’t mean that large enterprises and corporations aren’t also affected. The difference is, these enterprises and corporations are sometimes better equipped to do something about it… which many have.

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A Bit of Fun Can Get Work Done Faster

When you want your workforce to operate more productively, and engagement has been shown to have positive effects on productivity, it makes sense that you would want to actively promote activities that have been shown to improve engagement. One approach that many companies and organizations are now embracing is gamification. Let’s discuss the concept of gamification, and how it might benefit your business.

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HIPPA and the End of Windows 7

Back in January, Windows 7 reached end-of-life. This doesn’t cause your Windows 7 computer to stop working. However, without support and updates, Windows 7 will slowly, but surely, develop security holes. Any software unable to be updated is by default HIPAA non-compliant and that includes any computer still using Windows 7.

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Managing Your Business and Remote Workforce During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Companies around the world have or are finding the need to send their workers home to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus. For many business owners, managing your staff remotely is a brand new paradigm. Here’s what you need to know.

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Backup Delivers Peace of Mind in Times of Crisis

With most businesses dipping into their disaster recovery strategies, and millions of workers either out of work or working remotely, it is honestly a great time to remind you that March 31st is World Backup Day. This is a day where we help promote the idea of taking backups of your crucial IT systems to ensure that you have access to your important information if a disaster were to strike your business.

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In the Age of Coronavirus, Now’s the Time to Reconsider Telework

New York State recently mandated a stay in place order, requiring only essential businesses remain open and all others have their employees stay at home. The goal is to reduce the spread of coronavirus, by increasing social distancing. The best way to do this is by having fewer employees physically in the office. For telecommuting to be successful you need to have a plan in place before you need to use it. Here are 5 steps to allow your employees to work from home in the age of coronavirus.

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Is Your Business Prepared to Deal with Coronavirus?

World events have always had a big impact on the banks that one finds on Wall Street, but in many ways, the one that coronavirus (COVID-19) has demonstrated has been unprecedented. As such, it almost provides a case study of the importance that disaster recovery planning has for any business… Wall Street institutions included.

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Understanding How Technology Impacts C-Level Business Roles

We’ve all heard the title CEO before, business shorthand for Chief Executive Officer. In fact, it may be a title that you hold yourself. While the CEO of a company is undoubtedly important, it is crucial to consider what other c-level roles should also be filled. As a technology-centric company, we often consider roles like the CIO, the CTO, and soon enough, the CDO to be just as important. 

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Why Should You Outsource Business Processes?

There quite a few reasons that it makes sense for a small-to-medium-sized business to lean on outsourced assets. Let’s go over a few of the biggest benefits that you could see from bringing on these kinds of services, from both a financial and operational stance.

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How to Use a CRM Effectively

There are a lot of businesses that depend on their Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform. It’s not just used to manage their customer relationship, it also helps with production, invoicing, operations, human resources, and more. Today, we’ll take a look at the CRM and see how strategic use of this platform can help build your business. 

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How to Judge the Quality of an IT Provider’s Services

It’s a safe assumption that your business relies on some technology in order to operate (after all, you are reading a blog on the Internet). As a result, it is likely that you will require some level of IT support at some point. While this may sound like something simple enough to find, you need to keep in mind that not all IT service providers will necessarily provide the same quality of service.

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Defining Shadow IT and Its Risks

IT administrators are pretty particular about what software is used on the networks that they manage. This is not because we have any vested interest in the software itself, it’s because of the inherent reliability of the software they manage. They’ve tested it, they manage it, they know it. When an organization starts dealing with employee-downloaded software--especially if there is no procedure in place to report additions to IT--they can quickly lose control over the network. 

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What Happens During an IT Assessment?

With technology being deployed to help businesses solve all manners of operational inefficiency, it’s often difficult to pinpoint what IT will work best for your business. Organizations of all types look to technology; and, at some point you need to ask yourself if your technology is set up to help reach your business’ potential. 

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The Value That Managed IT Services Bring to the Table

We’re always trying to get our message out, sharing how our services can bring value to just about any kind of business - including nonprofits and municipalities - seeing as just about every business today relies on technology to some degree. Here, we wanted to demonstrate how that value can present itself through managed services.

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Are You Providing Internal Communication Capabilities?

Businesses have a variety of communications to manage, including their internal ones. For many, this may be put on the back burner, as they prioritize their operational and sales-encouraging communications. However, internal communications are just as crucial, which is why we’re going over some of your options here - and how you need to use them.

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How Improving Communications Improves Your Business

If you were to search Google for “the most important thing for a company to be successful,” there appears to be a wide range of answers - from team management, to sales skills, to relationship building, to decision making. However, among the vast majority of the results, there was one common thread: the ability to communicate. That’s why we’re exploring how to best communicate with people associated with your business.

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Technology Concerns Heading Into 2020

For most businesses, technology has a major role in what they do. They use it in all manners of ways, but there is no question that it has become a driving force for business. As the calendar flips to a new decade, we thought that it would be good to take a look at what the 2010s brought us, and what to expect in the 2020s. 

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Sometimes Printing Just Doesn’t Make Sense (Or Cents)

There was a time when business was run through the printer. These days, there are many digital solutions that can really limit the need for high-volume printing. Today, we’ll take a look at how the average business can cut their printing costs and do it while improving their business using print management.

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Spend Smartly… Invest in an MSP

While it is true that many small and medium-sized businesses don’t have access to the resources enterprise-level businesses do, they don’t have to find themselves on the outside looking in. By partnering with an MSP, SMBs can have access to the same IT resources as larger organizations at a price that is within their reach.

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Co-Managed IT Can Help Fast-Track Tech Integration

Typically, when a business decides to upgrade their technology it is out of necessity. Either the business grows fast and starts to outpace the existing tech or it is burning through capital and has to find a solution to help optimize its operational efficiency. Of course, a business could very well think that some new technology will improve their profitability, or it could be mandated to change by regulation. 

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Why a Cloud Backup Is a Necessary Part of Your Business Continuity

Modern businesses generate a lot of data, some of which they couldn’t really function without. This makes the prospect of data loss especially dangerous, making a data backup imperative. Today, cloud computing is seen as the premiere option in terms of data redundancy and availability. Today, we’ll look at why you want to consider storing your backed-up data in the cloud.

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Which Email Platform is Better for You, Outlook or Gmail?

Email remains an incredibly useful tool in the business setting, assisting with a wide variety of communication needs. However, in order to make the most of your emails, you need to have an email client that permits you to do so. Here, we’re pitting two major email clients against each other to see which one offers the features that best suit your business and its needs.

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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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