The 6 Types of Technology Your Company Can't Go Without

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ere are types of technology your business can’t go without:

Technology has become the lifeblood of many different companies, but every company has different uses or preferences for what technology they should use. That being said, there are a few constants that you will find in just about every single business the world over. While these are just a small sample of great technology that can help your business everyday, these are the most common and most necessary. Here are types of technology your business can’t go without:

Phones

This one might sound obvious but some people don’t realize the massive impact phones have on a business, internally or externally. You use them to take and make calls with clients, other employees, other businesses, for meetings, to hold voicemails, the list goes on and on. Running a business without a phone is like trying to drive a car without any windows or mirrors. It’s possible, but will be incredibly difficult and potentially harmful to you and anyone in the car with you.

Mobile Websites

Mobile phones are becoming more and more complex and now are able to do a variety of things that was only dreamed of 15 years ago. Your business website should be mobile friendly so that anyone, anywhere can go to the site and find out exactly what they need to at the touch of a finger. Most sites today are already partially or fully mobile compatible, so making sure yours is as well is simply going with the norm.

Mobile App

This one is less common than the previous point but no less important. An app makes your business so much easier to contact or access from a client’s point of view. Instead of pulling up a webpage and searching for what they need, they can simply pull up the app and find what they are looking for with much more ease. This depends on the business you are a part of but most businesses out there can benefit from a mobile app.

Printers

Returning to the physical, office technology, no company is complete without the ever handy printer. This state of the art paper processing machine can keep everyone informed with memos, charts, so on and so forth. Despite the rise of technology and the use of online forms of information storage, the physical copy is just as important and in some cases much safer to keep than online.

Email

You need an email just as badly as you need a phone when it comes to business. This is the fastest way to get a hold of someone besides calling them and every conversation sent can be stored so that you don’t accidently forget. Some email services come with extra features and that is entirely up to you whether you want an all in one email or not, but at the bare minimum you need some way of direct contact with suppliers, customers, and employees that isn’t as personal as a phone, and this is where the email shines.

Online Data Storage

You need a server to keep things up and running all the time for your business but in some instances it is tough to find the right service provider. There are numerous companies that will help you host your data on their servers or rent servers out to you and should things get messy, step in to help you recover data if any was lost. You will go through a surprising amount of data over the course of just a few months so the better the server/provider, the more money you are saving the in the long run.


4 Things to Consider When Choosing Software For Your Company

Looking for software can be a hassle, especially considering how large the market has grown over the last decade. There are hundreds of options and even if you have a niche business, there are still a dozen or more choices at your disposal. How are you supposed to figure out which ones are the right ones for you and if they will last long enough for you to get a return on investment. Here are a few points to look for when you are choosing software for your company:

Software Price Versus Value

The price of software should be a major point of determination for anything you do in a business and software is no exception. It shouldn’t be the sole factor behind your choice but it should certainly have a large effect on it. Correlating price to value may be a bit of a stretch though. Spending more to get a longer list of cool functions is great if you benefit from all of those extras, but they could bog down your overall performance in the long run. You want functional software that you and your employees can adopt easily and quickly, but it needs to be a step up from your current software. Look for affordable, efficient, and adoptable software wherever possible.

Assisted Implementation

If a certain type of software has a monthly agreement, you need to be aware of options you can take to end the contract and whether these options have penalties involved. If you become unhappy with a service and want to switch, it would be terrible to find out that the monthly agreement only allows you to back out after a certain amount of time or at a certain point in the month. You are paying a specific price for the product so you should be well aware of the stipulations involved with the software. If they don’t seem confident in their own product through their satisfaction guarantee, look elsewhere for affordable software.

Bug Fixes

Nothing is perfect out of the gate, especially when it comes to software. There will always inherently be problems that need to be worked out, depending on how new it is. The process that a company needs to go through to put these patches through should be something to consider. Make sure that they will help deal with unique cases and not just general issues that every user may run into. Also look into potentially how often they look to put out bug fixes and patches. Some companies use a system with specific times of the month that they roll out a patch.

Customization

Is the system customizable? With the advancements of technology, there are new and improved systems being rolled out all the time. You may need something very niche though, and a rigid software system can be very hard to adopt in a short amount of time. Make sure that the software is flexible to the users needs and able to be customized to the company needs as well. You should find a balance between the two. A highly customizable system means it may be harder to get a handle on while a rigid system will be easy but have much less breathing room when it comes to working around issues or using certain features.


TimbukTech Can Help You Find the Right Hardware For Your Business

No matter what business you may be in, there are always tough decisions to be made. One of the biggest of these involves tech. How do you know what model is best for you, or which of these machines you actually need? What makes hardware so important, isn’t software all the rage these days? While software is incredibly important, you can’t make a company tick off of software alone, you need the actual machine to cradle it and back it up. That’s where TimbukTech can help. TimbukTech can guide you toward the right hardware for your business. TimbukTech is here to give you the best possible advice on any hardware decision you might have in the future.

Technology is always advancing and becoming better than its predecessors. The speed in which it advances can seem staggering when you see it in full. The advent of the internet as we know it was only 30 odd years ago and for many of us we have either watched it grow into what it is now or were born into it, but whatever the case may be, the machines you use to run your business are advancing just as quickly. It shouldn’t be painful looking for the right hardware to fit your needs, but with so many options out there it can seem daunting. TimbukTech can give you a hand though.

We want you to succeed and that means success on all levels, even the basics. With so many options to choose from, you may buy into a cheap model that doesn’t work as well for you or your clients, or maybe you bought an expensive model that does redundant functions, essentially wasting your money. You shouldn’t have to sweat the details and that’s where we come in. We can help consult you on the best choices on the market for your business and your budget so that you can focus on the bigger picture. Hardware is a rapidly evolving field with new models being released yearly or even every few months. That means you need hardware that can get plenty of mileage for what you pay and can last long enough to be useful to you without becoming a hassle. We at TimbukTech are experts in the technological field, so any hangups or questions you may have about a facet of your hardware or ideas you might have about improvements are are things you can run by us at any time so that you can get the best bargain out of your spending. Your business comes first and it all starts with the hardware you run it on.


VoiceComplete is Built to Fit Your Business

Taking and making calls can be frustrating for a number of reasons, especially in a business. Calls keep continuity of communication between different departments and between you and the customer. Having a sub-par provider or system in place can make things take twice as long or potentially harm your business through dropped calls or long wait times. With VoiceComplete, this doesn’t have to be an issue. This article will run through a simplified rundown on how it can be tailored to your businesses needs and how that will help you in the long run.

The phone is your lifeline to the customer; without it, you are left with the much slower, more limited options. So, you should always make sure that you have the best phone service. But going with the easiest option, although it may be cost efficient early on, can lose its luster over time. What if a call drops, or it doesn’t receive a voicemail, or the call is spotty? Any number of issues can crop up that will cost additional money, running up the overall tab and your patience. You need a system that works consistently and cleanly and that can keep up with modern business demands. This is where VoiceComplete comes in.

VoiceComplete allows you to transfer calls between multiple locations and extended numbers, much like a cell phone or vendor line, but fully accessible to you in the workplace. You can check voicemails outside of the office and receive email notifications of said voicemails so that you can listen to them via cellphone. You will have unlimited domestic calls at a flat rate and there are no busy signals. If the customer can’t reach you, they will be put in touch with someone who can immediately. Faxes may also be received by email or to a printer with the fax over IP system, which is both SOX and HIPAA compliant. If this sounds too good to be true, we can assure you it is very real and very useful. Never worry about your work phone acting up again. Let VoiceComplete handle the details of the call while you focus on the conversation.

VoiceComplete can be tailored to your businesses specific needs, whatever they may be. The system is built with you in mind, allowing for easy growth and expansion in the future. Don’t let your phone system force you to handle the business around it, use VoiceComplete to have it fit your business model. Dropped calls and forgetful hardware are a thing of the past and your client and staff will be thankful that you took the time and effort to work out the perfect system for your business.


3 Hidden Costs of Insufficient IT Support

IT is a difficult field to manage in the long run. Any number of things can go wrong with the technology at hand and IT is tasked with solving as many of those issues as they can. This puts a lot of pressure on IT support and enforces the ideal that they should be as thorough and careful as possible when it comes to managing the company’s technological assets. These are just a few of the ways that mistakes from IT support can cost your business in the short and long term.

Downtime

When IT support isn’t at its strongest, it shows. The delay can cost you more than you think and it only gets worse the longer it takes. With IT doing what it can, some major functions are going unused, meaning loss on revenue. It might seem clear to some that when IT isn’t doing its job on time that the business suffers, but there is much more to it than you might think. Imagine that a hospital login system crashed unexpectedly one day. The doctors and nurses can’t get in to the system, meaning that digital files and paperwork are locked away for the time being. IT is called in to handle the situation, but they are either slow or inefficient. After a few hours, only the nurses are able to log back in, meaning that the doctors are still unable to get to crucial information that they don’t have on file. The hours tick by and lives are potentially damaged because IT wasn’t fast enough or efficient enough to get the job done on time. It’s an extreme example, but something similar could happen to your business and when the burden falls to IT support, they are the mortar to your foundation, keeping everything in place and making sure there are no cracks showing. If they aren’t able to do their job in a timely manner, it can have serious repercussions.

Price Incline

This is more obvious than the others, but things are going to cost more to fix the longer they are offline. If IT isn’t doing the best job possible, nothing will get accomplished and your business will fall behind. Not just that, but it will cost you quite a hefty sum to make sure the problem is fixed and doesn’t happen again. If IT takes too long, you will need to incentivize customers to come back to your services somehow and that is lost money. You will need to pay for different methods of fixing a problem that might return due to mistakes made, which is also lost money. The price you pay for IT support can be a moderate, standard amount, or a bloated load of cash that quickly accrues as problems continually pile on.

Reputation

You have a certain reputation to uphold. Clients are expecting the very best you have to offer everytime they come to you for something and you are obligated to provide your very best. When IT support is dragging their heels on an issue or can’t figure out how to solve something, you are suddenly unable to provide exactly what is expected of you, leaving you twiddling your thumbs in hopes that things speed up. Maybe IT doesn’t have the materials they need to finish the task on time, maybe they are understaffed, or maybe they simply haven’t seen an issue like this before and need to start from scratch to figure it out. Whatever the case might be, there needs to be a backup plan in place just in case. You don’t want people to think your services are slow or always broken, because word of mouth can make or break a business in some cases. You want to show them the very best you have to offer at all times, which means having the best IT support you can afford to make sure issues are stopped before they get out of hand.


Why 'Fix as Needed' is a Bad IT Support Plan

IT support deals with a lot of things on a day by day basis, but some of them are put on the backburner. This might be due to multiple reasons, whether it be because the issue seems small or because there is the idea of fixing a problem as it arises, but this can cause issues in the long run. Dealing with problems as they come up may seem convenient at the moment, but what happens when multiple problems surface at once? Suddenly IT is scrambling to do its best and fix every problem at once, with the same deadline as always. This is a dangerous stance to take in the digital age and could lead to major problems over time. Every company needs a complete IT support plan.

Dealing with technological issues is what IT support was made for, but simply waiting around for the problems to appear is lazy and doesn’t actually benefit anyone. IT should always be monitoring for problems and attempting to fix them or find a fix before they impact the business. IT support is in place so that they can find and fix problems before and after they occur. They should be focused on tracking down any and all potential issues and fixing them or finding ways to prevent them from impacting the business. If all they do is wait for problems to come to them, they will find themselves swamped with work and holding up the basic functions of the business while they do.

Of course, this doesn’t mean only look for things to fix and not handle current problems, but try and find a balance between the two. Hunt down potential bugs or issues and work on ways to solve them before they blossom, while also handling problems that arise from any number of venues in the workplace.

Imagine a workplace with a complacent IT support group. Everything is running smoothly and IT is preparing for the worst, but passively. They are making sure their software is up to date, chatting, dealing with small issues and calls from other workers that have issues at the moment but nothing major. Then disaster strikes with the entire email system crippled from a bug due to some office worker accidentally opening an email containing a virus. Had IT been a bit more proactive they may have been scanning for emails such as this, creating or utilizing a system that can catch these emails before someone opens them. They could have sent out a warning email to all workers that potentially malicious emails are floating around this time of year and to be very careful and to contact IT if they come across a suspicious email. But instead they waited for something to happen, and when it did it cripples the company.

People go for hours or even days without email, forced to resort to other means to contact clients and each other. Money is lost, reputation is lost, and IT rapidly becomes overworked from the influx of problems that follow. Standing in an open field and waiting for a storm while expecting not to get wet is foolish thinking. A raincoat, an umbrella, boots, these are things that are needed to weather a rainstorm and stay fairly dry. IT support should be of the same mind in that regard.


6 Tips for Evaluating Your Business Technology Hardware

What is it you want to get out of your technology hardware? How effective is it? There are plenty of questions you might be wondering about your hardware as you implement it or look back on it during evaluation time. But maybe you’re unsure what you should be looking for when you are reviewing your business hardware. If you aren’t sure what to look for or would like a quick, cursory run through some points of interest, then this article should be helpful for you.

Backup

Things can happen to your hardware that could be harmful to it in the short or long run. In case of emergencies you should always have a backup prepared, whether that be physically or electronically is up to you. You won’t get a warning that something is failing usually, it will just stop working one day. When this happens, you need to be sure that there is a way to recover the data stored on the hardware quick and clean, without too much stress and hassle.

Security

Your hardware should be secure, with checks in place to make sure that everything is going as smoothly as possible. It should be able to detect issues quickly and ensure you have some sort of plan in place to deal with them, or at least gives you time to prepare a response. Technology can be unforgiving, that is why you should always be ready and always have the best security to monitor for any inconsistencies.

Cost

You want the best possible hardware, but it needs to be affordable. Make sure you do your research thoroughly, you don’t want to be paying a ridiculous amount of money for something that might still have bugs or perform as well as something half the cost. That also factors in the cost of maintenance. If you are bleeding your budget dry trying to keep a piece of hardware serviceable, don’t be afraid to upgrade to something better. If it isn’t doing what you want it too and the cost of upkeep looks like it’s going to exceed simply upgrading to something better, take the upgrade. You’ll thank yourself in the long run.

Growth

It should be able to handle everything you need it too, but when your business starts to expand, your hardware may have a tough time keeping up with the influx. With more people utilizing it, the wear and tear could begin to show sooner than expected. Hardware can only handle so much strain before it starts to break down. Make sure that yours is up to the task when you start expanding your business and if it isn’t, maybe look to invest in something that can.

Optimization

There is always going to be an upgrade out there, maybe not right away, but usually when it’s needed most. Hardware needs upgrades to make it better as well, to push out some of the annoying bugs left behind in the previous version. Keep it up to date and monitor how effective it is. If the hardware is difficult to tune or slowing down, or even just giving out, it might be time to look into other hardwares on the market.

Virtualize

Data can be stored on hardware, but there is a limit to how much it can handle. As technology improves, there are more ways than ever to store data. Storing it on hardware makes it easily accessible, but where does it leave you in the long run? You might run out of space sooner than you think. Consider the virtual route for at least some if not the majority of data storage. If you don’t think your hardware will have any issue with storage then you don’t need to worry, but virtual storage is quick, clean, and just as accessible than it would be on hardware.


4 Things To Consider When Building an IT Strategy

Creating an IT strategy can be a trying time for a business, whether the business is new or a veteran. There are plenty of factors that go into the decisions needed to make the IT strategy effective and lasting. It needs to be something that benefits all parties at the end of the day, not just customers and not just the business itself. Incorporating elements that benefit both sides can be difficult at times, but in the long run it’s for the best. Here are just a few things to consider when you are creating an IT strategy.

Cost

Money being the lifeblood of a business, it makes sense that the IT strategy should be effective and efficient. However, this doesn’t mean that it should be so cheap it doesn’t do the job properly or so expensive that it bloats the response time or system to the point of becoming a hassle. It needs to be a balance, set between effect and efficiency. That means money needs to be a priority. Not just for when things go wrong, but to make sure things are going right too. IT should be there for the tough moments and the easy times. Every penny that is put forward should be invested in the smartest way possible, and that means making sure that they are on top of things from the start. The services should be affordable for you but with a price tag that can guarantee the product you’re getting.

Efficiency

It’s been said before, but aside from just the cost, the service provided should be efficient as well. No wasted time or effort, responses that come as soon as they are needed, and just enough stress to keep people on their toes. That may sound like it would hurt the infrastructure, but keeping people on task as much as possible means a little bit of pressure. IT should be monitoring the system around the clock to make sure they are on top of any issues that might crop up and either fix them before they get worse or get a headstart on fixing them before they become unbearable. IT should be ready for any threat and properly staffed and trained to handle whatever may come their way.

Effectiveness

The point of having IT in the first place is the positive effect they have on the business. They need to definitively handle issues placed before them so that these problems don’t come up later on. IT should be focused on response time and how well they respond to the issue at hand, be it for a client or for the business itself. Many companies will simply say put the customer first, but you should strive to keep yourself and your clients on fairly equal ground. They come to you for your services and you go to them for a source of income. Since you both go hand in hand, you shouldn’t focus on just what the customer needs, but what would benefit both of you the best. If that means priority on your end, so be it. Keep up constant communication and keep IT supplied with everything they need.

Materials

Similar to the previous point, providing IT with everything they need to succeed is the best stance to take when creating a strategy. Make sure they have the hardware and software necessary to manage any problem that might come up. It might take a while to get things to a comfortable stage, but at the onset, they should be prepared for the worst, right off the bat. IT is a place of stress and salvation for many businesses, but if you implement a proper strategy, everything should go smoothly.


5 Things to Know About the IT Service Saver Program

Technology is always evolving and adapting the numerous changes across the world, and this means that IT is changing along with them. But just as technology evolves, it doesn’t always do it perfectly. There are hiccups in any system that can’t always be rooted out when a software or hardware is released and disaster could strike without warning. A natural storm can be tracked and prepared for accordingly, but a technological storm can happen without warning and cause serious problems if there are no preparations in place. That’s where the IT Service Saver Program comes in. This article will highlight just a few of the great features that TimbukTech offers with this new IT service.

Flat Investment

This is a flat investment you will be making. The price isn’t going to fluctuate or inflate out of nowhere, blindsiding you. You are putting down a monthly investment into the best care we can provide you. Your business becomes our priority and your IT support strategy is our lifeblood. We make it our duty to put that investment towards the most efficient and effective strategy we can come up with and help you implement it in the easiest way possible. There shouldn’t be hidden costs and everything should be laid out to be as simple as possible for you.

Teamwork

We believe that you matter and make your business a priority. We want you to feel like we are part of the team. We aim to work closely with our clients and become an extension of your business in some ways. We don’t want to be just the number you call when things go wrong, we want to be there every step of the way to make sure things are always going right and if not, we can step in an offer a helping hand.

CTO/CIO

TimbukTech can help you create the best strategy possible, but that isn’t all we offer. We can help evaluate your equipment needs and direct you to the best possible solutions. You should always have the very best hardware and software for your business and we want to help you find the best solution. We want to help improve IT efficiency so that issues are resolved faster and taken care of so that they never crop up again. We want to help you create a strategy that caters to your business and gives you and your clients the care and services they deserve.

Efficiency

IT support should be efficient, an investment that you never regret or stress over. We know how important IT is to businesses and want to help you create the best possible support strategy for your business and streamline it so that you don’t have to worry when things go wrong. There are always going to be problems, we know that. But they should never be so serious as to cost you clients. Let us help you find the best solution and implement it, making sure that everything goes smoothly from the first day on.

Around the Year Service

Being an extension of your business means that we are there when you need us most. If that is during normal work hours or after, we are just a phone call away. Our services are available to you year round, meaning that we are always ready to help at a moments notice. Let us help you build the business you’ve always dreamed of and make that dream a bit more manageable through IT support.


Why Your Business Needs a Technical Business Review from TimbukTech

Problems can stem from anywhere and we get that, but they shouldn’t hinder your day to day services, especially when it comes to IT. Technology is a major focal point for any business big or small and if something isn’t working, we want to help you figure out why and how to fix it. That is what the Technical Business review can offer you; a way to figure out where your technology plan is falling behind and how to improve upon it or change it to make it better.

What is a Technical Business Review? To put it simply, this is a service TimbukTech offers to businesses that think they might need a change of pace in their technology strategy. Some things just don’t work out in the long haul or even the short term, but they might be so small that you don’t pick up on them, or so large that you aren’t sure how to go about changing the system to accommodate a change that big. That’s where we come in. We can help show you where your technology plan is falling short and how to fix or improve it in the short and long term.

Nobody can know exactly what could go wrong with a business plan or a technology strategy and we know that. Some issues pop up out of nowhere and leave you vulnerable or scrambling to fix it. It can be stressful, but it doesn’t inherently have to be. With our Technical Business Review, we check over your entire technology strategy and figure out what you could do without, what could use improvements, and what you might want to add to it. That can be a lot of information to go over, but use us a way to sift through the information and find the best possible results.

Technology doesn’t have to be daunting. It might seem like a lot the first time you look through your resources but we can help you trim the fat and make the whole thing better with a little time and effort. Issues that come up could range from a few bugs or misuses elements to system overhauls, but don’t let these changes intimidate you. Your business deserves the absolute best you and by extension we can offer, so even if things seem like they are out of control, don’t panic. We are here as a resource to you so that everything can go smoothly. We only want the best for your business and aim to improve whatever we can in your technology strategy.