Monthly Archives: October 2020

6 Types of Backup Recovery Your Business Can Implement

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Data loss can be catastrophic to your business. Learn about the data recovery and backup options available today.

Backup recovery is an essential part of running a modern business. Today, we rely so much on our digitally stored data and the very computer systems that we work on that it’s not practical to fly without a backup recovery plan in place. Backups make it possible to restore from mistakes, from malfunctions, and from hacking attempts simultaneously, or whichever disaster comes first.

Whether your office is hit by a hurricane or a bad batch of ransomware, a good backup is the key to shaking off that setback and getting your team back on the grind with barely any interruption. Of course, not all backups are the same. What you choose to backup shows both your priorities and your versatility in restoring any data that is lost.

Let’s dive into the six primary types of backup you can take to aid in future data recovery efforts.

Key File Backups

The first and leanest way to make backups is to only create copies of your most important files. For some businesses, this is a practical approach. In fact, all businesses should have their key files backed up. Having just these files essentially at-the-ready ensures that anything from a data-entry error to a device disaster cannot lose more than a few days to a week of work, depending on how often you back up your key files.

Database Backups

Database backups tend to be quite large and need to be very effectively compressed to be practical. Database backups are also absolutely necessary if you have an active database that serves your website, your business venture, or both. Backing up the database can make it possible to completely restore all of your stored data, even if something corrupts your entire database or damages the host server. A database backup can keep a company afloat after a disaster and ensure that years of collected data are not lost.

Project Backups

Project backups are more selective and tend to focus around one person or team working on a shared project. Backing up a project has several useful purposes. If one team member accidentally changes or deletes an essential file, it can be restored from the latest active backup. If the project is damaged or even if you need to reset your project from a previous point for development reasons, you can restore your project from any recent backup.

Some active project backups take the form of “version control” which is a unique type of backup made for collaborative projects. It records each change made by each person, time-stamped and labeled so all changes can be reviewed and, if necessary, rolled back.

Personal Computer Backups

A personal computer backup is something you can help employees implement for themselves. This ensures that if anything like malware or a bad software update corrupts the device, that the device owner can restore almost everything about their computer from a recent backup. All personal files and installed programs should be included so that someone who needs their personal computer restored can jump right back into the saddle.

Workstation Reset Backups

Workstation backups are different from personal computer backups. A workstation, especially a hot-desk workstation, should not have any personal or even local files. Instead, a workstation backup is a save of a configuration. The software and the security settings are particularly important. With a complete workstation backup, restoring one of your hot-desks or even establishing a new workstation is a simple matter of loading the backup onto the computer. This is much easier than re-downloading, installing, and configuring each workstation when it needs to be built or reset.

Whole-Network Backups

Last but not least, there are backups for your entire network. A truly thorough backup can make it possible to restore your business network, local or cloud, with all the right settings. This is an ideal restoration plan for natural disasters, system-wide ransomware, and location-changes. If your business network, with all it’s custom configurations, is compromised then it could take months to re-establish. With the right backup, you won’t have to deal with setbacks and can quickly restore your computers from any known disaster type.

Contact us today to learn more about backups and disaster recovery plans. Our team can help and we look forward to meeting you.

IT Monthly Management Reports: Leading Your Department

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When you’re in charge of your IT department, monthly management reports are essential.

As in nearly every industry, the Information Technology industry continues to face the hurdle of creating timely and thorough reports. In the Information Technology industry, IT reports can be used to improve the overall success of a business or organization. How? An IT report can help extend your value from an influx of digital data.

IT reports are extremely vital to a business or organization’s development and success. However, if you create reports that do not offer any value or insight to your needs, the work that was put into creating the reports will be wasted.

If you are responsible for leading the IT department, you have probably been asked a variety of questions in regard to the number of help desk tickets and the amount of time it took to resolve those tickets. If you do not have the information you need to thoroughly answer those questions, how will you be able to fully support the IT department?

Making Informed Decisions

Today, there are numerous tools and resources that can be used to create reports that will help you answer the simple and tough questions. There will always be a long list of questions coming in, and it is crucial to the success of the business or organization that you are able to answer those questions. IT monthly management reports will allow you to make informed decisions. When you are able to make decisions that are informed and well-thought-out, you will be able to lead the way and create strategies and solutions that can improve your business.

Why Do We Need IT Reports?

When creating a new business strategy or when revising a current business strategy for the IT department, it is important to have clear missions and goals. When you have visions and goals that are clear to you and everyone in the workplace, you will be able to use IT monthly management reports to determine where you stand. The IT monthly management reports can also be used to determine how effective or ineffective you have been on the progress you have made so far.

It is important to create reports that are correct because you need to know if you are meeting your business objectives. If the information on your reports do not meet the goals that have been aligned, you may be placing a wedge between the IT department and the other departments in the business or organization. If you create reports that are not correct or reports that are lacking key information, you can also negatively impact the budget that was set ahead of time.

Improve Your Business With IT Reports

If you have created IT reports in the past, you are aware of how many benefits it has. IT reports can do more than provide you with an assessment of your current needs and activities. When you have all of your data in one place, you will be able to fully analyze everything at one time. When you are able to analyze everything in front of you, you will be able to create IT dashboards.

When your IT dashboards provide you with information in real-time, you will not have to worry about constantly refreshing or searching for the data you need because everything will always be current. IT reports can lead to better decisions, greater flexibility, better agility, and an increased confidence throughout the department.

Are you ready to deliver valuable and thorough reports for your IT department? Are you ready to accelerate your business or organization? Please do not hesitate to contact us today for more information on the importance of IT monthly management reports.

The Importance of Updating and Maintaining Your Website

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Your website helps your company put its best face forward.

Creating a website for your business is one of the easiest and most cost-effective steps that you can take to drive new customers to your business. In fact, small businesses that do not have a website are at a major disadvantage, as the vast majority of customers now use the internet to search for products and services before making a decision. However, it is not enough to merely create a website and hope that this drives customers to your business. It is important that you maintain, update, and periodically overhaul your website in order to ensure that it is a relevant and engaging content source for customers. While maintaining your business’s website may not be your number one priority as a business owner, here is a look at just a few of the reasons why it is critical that you continually update your website’s content.

First Impressions Are Crucial

One of the most important reasons to maintain your website is to give customers a good first impression. The fact is that many customers are now inundated when choosing businesses to work with, and they will look through several businesses’ websites before making a decision. If they click on your website and it clearly looks outdated, has poor content, or it is not user-friendly, they will likely move over to a competitor’s website that is easier to use and visually appealing. In fact, many people will only look at a website for a few seconds before deciding whether or not to explore it further, which means that you do not have much time to make a good first impression. Keeping your website looking polished and updated will help to grab viewers’ attention, helping to improve conversion rates.

Keep Customers Engaged

Once you have a potential customer reading your website, you will need to keep them engaged with up-to-date information. The fact is that you need to provide a reason for customers to keep exploring your website and for returning customers to want to visit your website again. Continually updating your website and blog with company news, updated services, and helpful information that is of value, will keep customers engaged. The longer that you can keep people interested in your website, the more likely you will be able to turn them into returning customers.

Improve Your Search Ranking

Of course, customers won’t have a chance to peruse your website if they can’t find it. This makes it critical that you are doing everything in your power to improve and maintain your website’s search engine ranking, which includes continually updating and altering your website for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The fact is that Google is constantly changing and updating their SEO rules and search algorithms. If you are not staying on top of the latest SEO guidelines, and you are not updating your website accordingly, your website could drop significantly in search rankings, making it hard for people to find your website. In order for your website to be effective, you need to continually update it with fresh content and the latest keywords, and you need to continue updating your SEO settings.

Ensure Your Website is Secure 

Staying on top of website maintenance is also critical in order to ensure that your website software is up-to-date. If you are using a content management system, updating your website with the latest security patches and bug fixes is critical in order to help keep your website secure. Without the proper updates, hackers will try to take advantage of your website, which could put your company, and your customers, at risk. Additionally, if Google detects that your website has been infected by malware, your site may be delisted until you get it fixed. Continually updating your website will ensure that it stays secure and it reduces the chances that your website will be compromised.

While you may not see website maintenance has a priority, continually updating your website is critical in order to ensure that your website is an effective and secure digital marketing tool. Contact us to learn more about how you can protect your business, and your website, from hackers.