Blog

September 1st, 2015

1. Cloud-based Document Management is Cheaper

Cloud based management

Cloud based management

In-house document management systems are expensive and difficult on a small to medium business’s budgets.  They usually flood with more features that you may not use and will go unused.  At Myers, we have a flat rate for features that will come handy.  A document management system in the cloud is more out-of-the-box and you will save tens of thousands of dollars by resolving consulting fees, getting rid of servers and hardware and employee training. Plus, the speed and convenience is unbeatable.

2. Collaboration is Easier

You now don’t have to email different versions back and forth.  Simply make changes in your cloud-based document management system and workers can access the revised and latest versions. Replication and automatic saves of each version will be done by the system and the next editor can work on the most up-to-date file.

3. The Cloud is More Secure

Document management is replicated and stored with less likelihood of loss in network breach or a natural disaster.  It is more secure than open source programs. There is more protection and superior audit trails.

4. Cloud-based Document Management System Improves Productivity

Your HR department may need to pass around workloads for approvals. This usually takes a lot of time for each person to receive, print out, review and send back documents. With document management in the cloud, the approval process is reduced to hours and minutes since this is done electronically.

5. Mobile Devices Are Now Enabled in the Cloud

As mobile devices become more used in the workplace, it’s natural to work with the cloud and moving your business systems online including your document management.

August 31st, 2015
Easy access data management

Easy access data management

No longer, do workers sit at their desk all day on their computer. Rather, they move around and use connected devices. Mobility is changing the way we do business, but also making it harder to manage documents. This is especially true if you need fast access to a file located in another city or place.

Data Management Made Simple

To make employees more productive, it doesn’t matter where they’re working or what device they’re using. Cloud-based document management system may be the way to go. The cloud offers the benefits of on-site document systems, such as content library, records of changes for each document and audit trails and history. It is also done in a secure, online environment for authorized employees to access files with flexible timing and from any device.

Access Files with Flexibility

The cloud lets you access files at any time from any device. Storing your files as printed document is no longer the way to go. You may spend considerable time searching for documents. It makes it harder for customer service and record keeping as well.  Also, this waiting period might cost you more money and you make less money if your sales representatives don’t have the current contracts or product information readily stored.

Cloud storing allows your team to locate and open files within seconds and with the flexibility of devices. There is a higher level of service allowed and increased customer satisfaction with the speed.

Topic General Tech
August 31st, 2015

facts magnifying glassTechnology has forever changed our lives and our world more than you know. Here are some numbers to put that fact into perspective:

1. About 4 billion people worldwide own a mobile phone, but only 3.5 billion people own a toothbrush.

2. Computers and other electronics account for 220,000 tons of annual trash in the U.S. alone.

3. About 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute.

4. Around 100 billion e-mails traverse the Internet every day, and about 95% of those messages go straight to spam folders.

5. The annual amount of electricity it takes for Google to handle a billion search queries every day is around 15 billion kWh, which is more than most countries consume.

6. About 500 new mobile games appear on the Apple App Store each day.

7. The “father of information theory,” Claude Shannon, invented the digital circuit at age 21 while he was in college.

8. Regular computer users blink only half as often as non-users.

9. Over 1 million children can say their parents met on Match.com

Topic Newsletter
August 31st, 2015

As of last April, mobile-friendly websites were given a big leg up on competitors. Known as “responsive” websites, these sites instantly adapt to whatever device you are viewing them on.

As users were turning to smartphones and other mobile devices to surf the web, Google realized that most sites didn’t display well on mobile devices. Therefore, Google updated the way they list sites, giving mobile-friendly sites a higher ranking.

Google hasn’t removed all non-responsive pages from its top smartphone listings. But it’s quickly heading in that direction.

According to Searchmetrics, many rankings have suffered as a result. Non-responsive yet high traffic sites such as SearchBug, Reddit and Webs.com lost visibility, while responsive sites such as Advance Auto Parts and Grist moved up in the ranks, gaining more traffic.

In addition to getting higher search rankings, responsive sites are easier for visitors to use. Happy visitors engage more, increasing the rate at which they turn into customers.

There are three ways to make your website mobile-friendly:

1) Build a separate mobile edition that fits small screens and loads quickly.

2) Adapt your current website design to be more mobile-friendly. In some cases it may be difficult to make such a design responsive on all devices.

3) Convert your current website design into a responsive one. Going this route, you won’t need a separate mobile version, and you avoid potential penalties from Google for having the same content on multiple domains.

Find out if your website is mobile-friendly at www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly.

August 31st, 2015

You know the standard approach – first, identify your company’s weakness and then do everything you can to fix it. Practice at it relentlessly, feed your team (and yourself) with constant affirmations, do anything you can to dive deep into your weakness and fix it once and for all. If you can’t fix it, then go to Plan B by burying the weakness in hopes that none of your prospects or competitors find out.

Well, here’s the dealio: the business down the street that is naturally strong at the same thing your company is weak at is working just as relentlessly to improve their strength. While you are fixing something that’s broke, they are getting better at something that already works. While you may improve your weakness, their strength gets better too. At the end of the day they are still ahead of you. You lose. That is, unless you know the power of spin.

Instead of trying to fix weaknesses, smart leaders will turn the tables and make their weakness or even an industry weakness a competitive advantage. A wonderful example in the restaurant industry is Dick’s Last Resort. Like all restaurants that struggle with the occasional rude waiter, Dick’s could have tried to fix this industry-wide weakness. Instead they turned the weakness into their greatest strength. Known to have the “most obnoxious waitstaff in the world,” Dick’s built a whole system around exploiting an industry weakness. They hire and train people to be obnoxious (while the competition tries to fix it), and Dick’s has grown explosively.

I have found that exploiting a weakness can draw droves of prospects. So, let’s do it with your weakness. Here are the three simple steps you need to take:

Step 1

Know what your (or your industry’s) weakness is. The process is simple: ask your customer and prospects what they don’t like about your industry. Ask more customers the same question. Very soon you will know exactly what weakness they see.

Step 2

Instead of brainstorming ways to fix it, brainstorm ways to make the weakness absurdly weak. Can you make fun of it? Can you make it the core experience for your customers (think Dick’s Last Resort)? How can you make the weakness a good thing?

Step 3

Now that you have a new and improved weakness, let the world know all about it. Market it to your prospects, inform your customers and even leverage all that work your fiercest competitor put into highlighting your weakness in the past.

The process of spinning a weakness takes courage, and that is exactly why it works. It is likely you have been afraid of doing this in the past, and it is highly likely your competitors are just as afraid too. If you have the courage to spin your weakness into an über-weakness (a.k.a. a big-time strength), you might just blow your competition out of the water once and for all.

Guest article provided by:

Boost productivity in your firm with cloud technologies.MIKE MICHALOWICZ (pronounced mi-KAL-o-wits) started his first business at the age of 24, moving his young family to the only safe place he could afford—a retirement building. With no experience, no contacts and no savings, he systematically bootstrapped a multimillion-dollar business. Then he did it again. And again. Now he is doing it for other entrepreneurs. Mike is the CEO of Provendus Group, a consulting firm that ignites explosive growth in companies that have plateaued; a former small-business columnist for The Wall Street Journal; MSNBC’s business makeover expert; a keynote speaker on entrepreneurship; and the author of the cult classic book The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur. His newest book, The Pumpkin Plan, has already been called “the next E-Myth!” For more information, visit http://www.mikemichalowicz.com

Topic Newsletter
August 31st, 2015

Keeping An Eye On Things While You’re Awaynest cam

Have you ever worried about what’s happening at home when you’re away? The Nest Cam can keep you informed. This wide-angle camera streams sound and video to your smartphone. It will even warn you about any unusual activity.

If the Nest Cam detects sudden movement or loud noises, it instantly alerts you by phone. The video feed lets you see what’s happening and even scold kids, pets or burglars through a speaker.

This product integrates with other Nest equipment. For example, smart smoke alarms can activate the Nest Cam. It also saves alerts and footage in a convenient archive. The camera even makes it easy to share fun video clips online.

If you already have WiFi, setup is a breeze. This gadget comes with a stand that lets you put it on any flat surface. It also sticks to metal objects or screws onto a regular camera tripod.

 

Topic Newsletter
August 31st, 2015

Security shopping cartIf your company is not fully compliant with Payment Card Industry (PCI) Security Standards, you could be at risk of a serious tangle with attorneys. Technically, PCI guidelines are not a hard-and-fast set of laws. However, merchants can still face hefty liabilities for not meeting them. Avoid these mistakes to keep your company out of hot water with attorneys:

1. Storing Cardholder Data in Noncompliant Programs

Many states have laws regarding data breaches and, depending on where you accept cards, you may be subject to many of them. For example, Massachusetts has 201 CMR 17.00, which requires companies keeping any personal data from Massachusetts residents to prepare a PCI-compliant plan to protect that data. If a company then fails to maintain that plan, the business may face state prosecution.

2. Fibbing on the Self-Assessment Questionnaire

If you have considered tampering with the reports from your company’s Approved Scanning Vendor, think again. Time invested now to fix any holes in your data security system could save you big-time from the penalties your company could suffer if there’s ever a data breach.

The same thing applies to simply “fudging the truth” on self-prepared compliance reports. Even if you think it’s a harmless stretch of the truth, don’t do it.

3. Not Using the Right Qualified Security Assessor

Many companies use Qualified Security Assessors to help them maintain their PCI compliance. Every QSA does not necessarily know as much as another, however. It’s important to select someone who both understands your business and stays up-to-date on the latest version of PCI Security Standards.

4. Trying to Resolve Data Compromises Under the Radar

You may be tempted to fix a customer’s complaint yourself if they inform you of a data compromise. Not informing credit card companies of data breaches, however small, can lead to you no longer having access to their services. Those credit card companies can then file suit against your company, costing you big bucks in the end.

5. Not Checking ID for Point-of-Sale Credit Card Use

Sometimes it seems like no one checks IDs against the credit cards being used, so merchants tend to be lax about doing so. Unfortunately, running just one unauthorized credit card could cost you a lot in the long run. Even if the state in which you do business does not have specific laws regarding PCI compliance, a civil suit may come against your company for any data breaches. The court will not favor you if you have not been PCI-compliant.

All in all, it pays to pay attention to PCI compliance – a little time invested today could save you big-time tomorrow.

August 31st, 2015

Security crosswordIn a December 2014 survey by the National Small Business Association, 61% of small businesses reported being victims of a cybercrime within the past 12 months.

The average cost to recover from a cyber-attack skyrocketed from $8,699 per attack in 2013 to $20,752 per attack in 2014. And, of the businesses targeted, 68% said they’d been hacked more than once.

Experts agree, as cybercrooks become ever more sophisticated, the threat to small businesses is going to get worse before it gets better.

So what can you do to beat the bad guys?

Here are three common ploys used by hackers – and how you can fend them off:

Phishing – A really legitimate-looking e-mail urges you to click a link or open a file that triggers a malware installation on your computer.

Best Defense: Don’t let anyone in your company open files or click links in an e-mail unless they’re certain who it came from.

Cracking Your Password – Hackers can run programs 24/7 testing password combinations. The easier your password is to guess, the more likely it is they’ll crack it.

Best Defense: Consider using a password manager that generates and stores tough-to-crack passwords. For extra security, use unique passphrases for financial accounts in case the manager gets hacked.

Drive-By Download – You visit what appears to be an innocent site; yet when you click, your device gets hacked – and you may never know it, until it’s too late.

Best Defense: Make sure your browser is up-to-date, or use one that updates automatically, such as Firefox or Chrome. Internet Explorer users have been found to be most vulnerable to these attacks.

Unfortunately, these three examples are just a small sampling of the dozens of ever more ingenious ways cybercriminals are breaking down the doors and destroying unprepared businesses.

Let us help! Through September 30th, call our office and receive a FREE 15-Point Cyber-Security Audit to uncover gaps in your company’s online security.

Our highly trained team of IT pros will come to your office and conduct this comprehensive audit. We’ll then prepare a customized “Report Of Findings” that reveals specific vulnerabilities and a Prioritized Plan Of Attack for getting any problems addressed fast.

To take advantage of this limited-time offer, just call our office at (408) 483-1881 to schedule yours today.

August 28th, 2015

Cloud computing is made possible by the internet and share resources so offering cost savings.  In an enterprise that have a not so expendable budget, but with greater and complex IT needs, cloud computing is the greatest solution. With sophisticated IT solutions and systems in place, Myers can handle IT needs with any situation as needed. Myers is the IT service provider giving you the option of choices and freedom. You can stop worrying about your IT staff and retaining a workforce with the required skills that are now in short supply and no longer have an ability to deal with the complications of application upgrades and hardware problems.

1.) Improved Collaboration

Save and improve business work

Save and improve business work

 

People can meet and communicate virtually with cloud applications and so to improve collaborations. They can share information easily in real time, and can share storage. This technique can reduce the time-to-market, and improve product development.

2.) Cloud Computing Saves Money

There is no data center and you don’t have to buy extra equipment. There’s no significant money spent on hardware, facilities, utilities, and IT staff.  It’s super cost effective.

3.) Expenses Can Be Reduced Quickly

In times of need and recessions, costs can be rolled back, there is a flexible cost structure with cloud computing.

4.) Flexible Capacity

The cloud is flexible in facility because it can be turned up or down. Capacity can be added to avoid crashing servers or a flood of data. Capacity can shrink to reduction of onset of incoming data.

5.) Better for the Environment

It’s a greener solution with less data centers and more efficient operations. It has a collective impact on the environment with shared resources to improve less material usage.

August 27th, 2015

Cloud computing has offered several benefit solutions. Some of them have touted from businesses an improvement in time to market, an increase in process efficiency, and a reduction in IT spending to top it off. All of these, lead to company growth.

1.) New Software

Be more productive

Be more productive

Now with SaaS, the release of the latest versions of application to run the business are ready available as soon as possible. Immediate upgrades make new features and functionalities available for the workers to work with and allow them to be more productive. Most importantly, enhancements are done frequently and released often with ready availability. This contrasts traditional software that might release new update only once a year and take a long time to roll out.

2.) Be More Productive with Simplicity

Companies can now reduce the size of their data centers or even eliminate it altogether. This reduces the numbers of servers, the software cost and help out with staff management saving in IT costs without short-selling on the IT needs and requirements.

3.) Flexible Savings

Now, the expenses for cloud computing are much more flexible than any traditional means. Myers provides a flat rate and you only pay for that rate of the service. For the server, infrastructure capacity and services are ready when needed. Capacity can be provided more on as needed. This is certainly more flexible than traditional computing had to allow to accommodate peak times at all times.

4.) Availability Round-the-Clock

Flexibile to access data

Flexible to access data

Myers is extremely reliable in providing services within 60 minutes response time. The connection is always on and internet doesn’t go down. And when the internet is always available, it means workers can get the applications they need from anywhere.

5.) Flexible Mobility

As long as the internet connection is available, workers can access the data and applications anytime and anywhere.  Workers can continue their work by using mobile devices and work anywhere.