All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, as the saying goes, but is this really useful advice if you’re trying to keep Jack, Jill, and the rest of your team engaged in the workplace? As it happens, it is! Let’s explore how you can use gamification to your business’ benefit.
There is no doubt that you have come across the virtual assistant (or voice assistant). Whether you have it on a smartphone or you use it via a digital speaker in your home, you have probably spent some time using some type of virtual assistant.
On a Windows machine, look at your taskbar, near the Start button and the search function. The next little icon, the one that almost looks like a bit of film, is the Task View button, the button that (among other purposes) allows you to create and manage virtual desktops. For this week’s tip, we’ll discuss how to use this handy feature, starting with why you might want to.
The word “procedure” can easily be perceived in a negative light nowadays. It just sounds so… rote… compared to the exciting and dynamic buzzwords that so many “thought-leading, influencing, social media innovators” today toss around. Now, we don’t mean to disparage these personalities - we just want to emphasize that these innovations rely on a foundation to support them, and these foundations are based on business procedures and processes.
A full week into the new year, have you resolved to make any improvements to your business? In light of all the resolutions that may (or may not) have been broken by now, we decided to share a few resolutions you could put into place to improve your business and its processes.
One of the most common file types you hear about is the Portable Document Format file - although you probably know it simply as a PDF. PDFs are so well known because they are the best way to save a document so that, regardless of the device it is viewed on, the file will always appear the same. Did you know that you can do more than just look at a PDF? Here, we’re providing some tips on how you can make your PDFs work for you.
When you look at the cloud service business model, it can be easy to wonder how it is so beneficial to businesses - or really, how it fiscally can be. After all, dollars to donuts, the monthly service charges most likely add up to less than a business would spend for another, comparable service. To understand how the cloud does this, it may help to look at something that often occurs in the office.
You’re likely aware that we have a Help Desk for our clients to leverage, but not all companies handle their support the same way. Here, we wanted to share a few reasons that we are confident that our approach to support is better for our clients.
You’d be hard pressed to find anyone who works on a computer who hasn’t used at least one of the applications in Microsoft Office. Office has been a staple for professionals, students, and home users for decades. Over the last few years, Microsoft has reinvented how businesses can collaboratively use Office to improve productivity, security, and adhere to compliances.
Smartphones are a marvel of modern ingenuity. After looking at employee smartphone use as a problem for much of the past few years, today’s businesses have begun to amend that strategy and are now using employee devices to their advantage. With such a large percentage of today’s workers actively using smartphones, it only makes sense for businesses to try and incorporate their employees’ devices into their day-to-day operational strategy. Today, we’ll take a look at smartphones and how they’ve managed to go from nuisance to necessity.
Any project that your business undertakes will have its success defined by the particular goals you have set for it. This means that each project will be different, its own concerns and considerations coming into play. However, when it comes to managing these projects, most of them benefit from largely the same practices. For this week’s tip, we’re reviewing three that every project should incorporate.
There is no question that Google is an absolute giant in computing, having moved from web search functionality to a much wider variety of applications. These applications now make up the G Suite, and are used by many, many businesses to accomplish their goals. Here, we’ll go over some of these features and how they can benefit your operations.
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.
For a growing business, mobility has a distinct place. It isn’t all about using a phone for productivity, or having access to tools when you are out of the office, it is a philosophical decision to get the most out of your company’s data. Let’s look at the ways that enhanced mobility can benefit your professional services firm.
Productivity is always going to be a big issue in the workplace. While you want to encourage your employees to get work done, you don’t want to be too overbearing, as it could have the exact opposite of your desired effect. How can you make sure that your employees are staying on-task and focused on their goals? You can take the first step by understanding their motivations and long-term goals.
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.
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.
Accountants are asked a lot of questions. You’d expect as much as they manage a lot of organizational money, and can give small business owners and executives straight-forward advice about whether or not investments make sense for a company. With the recent increase in technology use for small businesses, accountants have been fielding more than financial queries, they’ve been directly asked about whether a business should implement technology. Today, we are going to explain why, regardless of the answer, your accountant is the wrong person to ask.
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.
Microsoft 365 has been on the market for a while now, and we thought it would be a good time to go into the different tiers of the platform to give you an idea of what it is, why it is useful, and how your business fits into the latest cloud platform offered by Microsoft. Let’s start with what it is.
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.
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.
If you were to poll all the business owners in your general area, one point of contention they would all have is that their workforce investments stay static, while their returns are seemingly variable. A lot of the variance is tied to the fluctuations of staff productivity. Anyone who has paid someone else to do work understands that even if the jobs are all the same, people bring a fairly wide range of issues to work with them, and they can have troubling effects on the ability of a business to move forward. Today, we will take a look at the modern worker, their motivations, and how the right IT can work to leverage more consistency for your business.
Working in an office is the reality for a lot of people, but it doesn’t need to be an unpleasant one. There are plenty of ways to make life easier while working in an office. Here, we’ll review five simple adjustments you can make to streamline your time throughout the workday.
The modern perspective of productivity would not be possible without the use of collaboration tools. Some of them are so game changing that they can completely revolutionize the way you hold meetings, deal with clients, and manage in-house processes. We’ll discuss how you can implement collaboration tools that work for your business, as well as use them to overcome the many challenges you might face in a business environment.
Downtime is the enemy of the modern business, and it’s easy to see why. However, not all organizations have the foresight to imagine a scenario when their operations are impacted so badly that they simply cannot function. We’re here to share our knowledge of downtime, its effects, and what you can do to keep it from affecting your organization.
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.
Inefficiency is not something that you plan for. It just happens. It happens when processes get too big, have too many moving parts, or are bogged down by excessive oversight. It happens when purposes for certain tasks change or are abandoned altogether. Other times efficiency has a different look to it and makes your optimistic projections look foolish. Whatever the reason, inefficiency is more the rule than the exception, and it’s costing your business plenty. This month, we take a look at what efficiency actually looks like and how to do your best to achieve it.
Bring Your Own Device is a hot trend in today’s business environment, as it creates a ton of opportunities for businesses to cut costs. However, this is only true if you implement a BYOD policy that your organization can take advantage of, as it creates considerable problems for your unprepared businesses.
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.
We hope we aren’t dating ourselves too much by mentioning computer punch cards, but they were once the means of inputting data into a computing device… at least, until the now-ubiquitous mouse and keyboard came into the scene. This variety of interfacing with our devices now seems to be one of the few ways to practically use them. However, other interfaces have emerged - do any of them stand a chance of unseating the keyboard and mouse?
Does anyone remember computer punch cards? Does this date us? Either way, since computing punch cards went the way of the dinosaur, there has been some version of the keyboard and mouse as we know them today. These interfacing tools have become so ingrained into our minds that it is frankly difficult to imagine a computer without them... But this begs the question, will there ever be a user interface impressionable enough to replace them?
Managing a business requires a lot of monitoring, and with enough of it, you might be able to enhance productivity through proactive maintenance and management. Let’s take a look at some of the issues that organizations commonly deal with in regard to management and monitoring.
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.
Social media has completely changed the dynamics of how people communicate with one another. While some users might only keep in touch with friends through it, others--including businesses and brands--use it to promote their products. In an age where a picture can appear on thousands of devices all over the world, privacy has become a major concern for anyone using social media.
Microsoft Word’s massive cache of options and its relative ease of use are two of its defining characteristics. This presents organizations and users alike with a large set of different ways they can set up the word processor. Today, we will take you through Word, providing tips on how to change these settings so that you can get the most out of it.
As unfortunate as it is to hear, science has pretty definitely kyboshed the notion that multitasking works. However, while multitasking may not actually have any true benefits to productivity, this doesn’t mean that there aren’t any ways to accomplish more in less time. Today, we’ll give you a better option than multitasking, a process known as parallelism.
Businesses deal with compromises every day, whether it’s leaving late to let someone else get an early out or coming in on your day off to get a critical project finished on time. One of the compromises you absolutely don’t want to leave out is your business’ future. It’s up to you to acquire a solution that minimizes downtime without costing your organization an arm and a leg, but this is much easier said than 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?”
In the business world, productivity is everything, which means that many will try to boost their productivity however they can. Many swear by multitasking, or the practice of juggling tasks to keep themselves fresh and productive. However, evidence shows they are mistaken. We’ll go into why, and offer a few more effective alternatives.
Every so often, even the best employee needs to take a break for the sake of their mental well-being. Just like the devices we all use every day, our brains need a chance to charge back up. Without a chance to de-stress and decompress, we are all vulnerable to burnout. Here, we go over a few ways you and your employees could refresh yourselves.
It isn’t often that one hears it discussed in the office, but the human body is an incredible piece of technology. Since your employees are so key to your business’ success, you’d benefit from doing everything you could to help your employees to take good care of their physical health.
The cloud is the perfect outlet for businesses to improve productivity, but the degree to which this statement is true depends on the business and how much it leverages the cloud. If you’re not sure if your business can be utilizing the cloud in a more efficient way, perhaps we can help you make this determination and improve the way you take advantage of this technology.
You walk into the office, just like you would on any other morning, and discover that there are updates that need to finish applying before you can use your workstation. Well, that’s certainly frustrating. Sure, it’ll probably only take a few minutes to complete, but you have your coffee in hand, and you’re ready to dive into the day. How can you burn that time, without it being a total waste?
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.
When we discuss our service offerings, we understand that it can all seem like a little much, especially to the small business that - up to this point - has never needed all these fancy solutions to operate effectively. However, there are a few considerations that the business this scenario applies to needs to account for. For instance, is it certain that these solutions are unnecessary?
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.
When people find new reasons to collaborate, it typically results in something positive. There is some new software that is now making collaboration easier, while still providing people the tools they need to stay productive. These collaboration tools are changing the face of business. Today, we take a look at them and how your organization can use these new collaboration tools to move business ahead faster.
It’s no secret that business operations have a lot of moving parts that need to be considered. The thing is, these parts are most likely the simplest elements of any workflow, but take up large portions of time simply due to the number of them that need to be addressed.
Hurricane season can be a scary time for business owners, as those in at-risk climates can never feel safe from these kinds of unpredictable and devastating storms. In particular, those who aren’t prepared to face this destruction are in considerable danger of having their organizations ended for good following a disaster event like a hurricane. We’ll help you make sure your business doesn’t suffer this same fate the next time it stares down a disaster.
If you look around your company, there’s a good chance that it has a lot of technology that you completely take for granted. No matter if you run a small retail store, a factory, or a multi-location office, your business needs IT to function properly. Today, we will take a look into several ways your organization can use technology to improve your business.
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.
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?
The business landscape can be unforgiving. It can be filled with landmines that slow progress to a crawl and blitzes that send your head spinning. If you were to compare the business world to history's great battles, technology solutions are a business’ weapons. They are the tools used to make the everyday grind possible. The more advanced an army’s technology, the bigger the edge they have over outfits that don’t have that technology...as long as it works as intended.
Modern businesses rely pretty heavily on the Internet--so much so that, should the Internet go down, many employees will find themselves at a loss as what to do. However, there’s no need to sacrifice productivity just because your Internet isn’t cooperating. There are plenty of ways to get something done on a day that the Internet calls in sick, which we’ll go over for today’s tip.
If you are a dedicated user of Google Calendar, you’ll have realized that it’s recently undergone a significant improvement. Google has pushed out an update that has really polished their calendar in terms of both visual appearance and functionality, which is something that you’ll really appreciate, especially if you are a G Suite user. How can you use this new version of Google Calendar for your business?
Back to school is upon us and then it’s a hop, skip, and jump until the holidays arrive. With more companies allowing their employees to work remotely, holiday travel will mean that people are going to be taking their work on the road with them. Preventing credit card and identity theft has been a priority for shoppers during the season for many years. It’s important that the same security considerations be given to technology being used for business while traveling.
How many monitors do you use? How many do your employees use? If they only have one monitor to be productive with, it could be hampering their ability to work efficiently. By incorporating a second monitor you can provide the construct to overhaul your employee’s productivity and efficiency.
If your employees are still working at workstations with a single monitor, you may be doing your workplace productivity a disservice. While adding a second screen to their desk may not seem like an effective efficiency booster at first, the benefits it can have are very real.