Staff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

This month’s Bio is on our newest member of the team, Ryan. Ryan is our Senior Solutions Engineer.

  • What is your name, age, place of birth, job role and length of service at Matrix IT?

I’m Ryan Osman, 27, born and raised in the Southampton area. I’ve been a technician now for around 7 years and am new to Matrix at only 4 months on the job.

  • If you could do one thing in life what would that be?

Probably go into space and walk on the moon. You never know! Also, cure world poverty.

  • What are your hobbies and passions?

Keen Brazilian Jiu-jitsu enthusiast! I Enjoy Carp fishing when the weather’s right. Take to the woodland or old warehouses for Airsoft a few times a year. I Love downtime with the kids and family at the weekend/evening and learning new things. I’d be a lost cause without music (anything goes here, except stuff along lines of Slipknot or The Proms. Mainly indie rock and drum and bass), self-development (Tony Robbins is my idea of Jesus).

  • How would you describe yourself?

A weird mix of being predominantly introvert with sporadic extrovert streaks. Easy going, hardworking, a little bit weird? But hey who isn’t?! Beard rocking (albeit ginger). Generally submissive to the daily issues and low-key stuff but will surprise people when I fiercely oppose a view/action as it is not in my core values. Skip the small talk, talk to me about the purpose of life. The tendency to retreat into my elastic waistband PJ’s and binge watch TV series for annual leave after a hectic period.

  • Do you have any pets and children?

I do, 😊 two beautiful girls – Maisy and Maggie aged 7 and 5.

  • What is your favourite item or thing to do?

Probably Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ). Nothing like trying to submit someone or prevent yourself from being submitted after a stressful day!

  • What is your favourite quote?

“ Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever” – Mahatma Gandhi

  • What motivates you?

The idea of achieving a goal for either gain for the better of the people around me or to better myself in the process.

  • What are your goals for the future?

The daily goal is to approach each day with a smile. I aim to get a blue belt in BJJ within a year. Buy a house within 5 years and start my own MSP within the next 7.

  • What do you love most about your job?

Projects all the way. The service desk is great too and it’s the bread and butter of the business. However, building a solution, planning the rollout and implementing it with efficiency and minimal client impact is what I enjoy the most. This goes hand in hand with building great relationships with our clients to the point you’re more work colleagues/friends opposed to business/client. That’s the joy of working with lots of SMB sector businesses, there’s a real personal touch to the work we do.

  • Describe your biggest achievement to date

Does surviving parenthood so far count? I jest, it’s a piece of cake….In all seriousness, I’d probably have to put down the achievement of signing up for Ultra MMA, completing the training and raising nearly £300 for Cancer Research in the process (as a team we raised over £7000). This entailed no previous experience of cage fighting, 8 weeks of training before a fight in front of 400 people in a Cage. Hands down the hardest, most painful, exhilarating and inspiring achievement so far.

  • Who is your idol, mentor or someone that inspires you?

Tony Robbins in terms of a public figure. However, one of our Directors, Gareth McQuaid, has been a key figure in my personal development over the last few years and I have a lot thank him for on that front.

  • Why Matrix?

Matrix gets it right with the mix of personal touch, professional effective support and building the best solutions for a client’s needs. After working for a corporate level IT firm,  I really missed how the SMB market worked and Matrix is the leaders for this sector. It just made sense to be with Matrix as this is the feel of business to client engagement I love.

 

 

How to know when you need IT support

How to know when you need IT support

 

When is the right time to seek IT support?

If you’re a small business with a few users or a large company with multiple systems, you may need external support. IT support is about keeping up with capacity so that when you benefit your business, your business can benefit you. Support ranges from help desk resolutions, installation projects, on-site maintenance and support agreements.

 

It’s time to consider IT support when:

  • Technical issues start affecting productivity
  • Staff do not have technical knowledge and struggle to resolve issues
  • Your internal IT can’t span to other technical needs (many businesses have internal & external IT support)
  • You are planning on expanding your business
  • Important documents and information needs reliable security
  • You want to experiment with different technologies

 

At Matrix, we act as your ‘outsourced IT department’, providing help to businesses in Portsmouth, Southampton and across the Hampshire region. To find out on how we can support your technical needs, please contact a member of our team on 01329 888444 or email moreinfo@mtxit.com

 

Staff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

This month’s Bio is on our newly qualified engineer Ben. He has just completed his Technical Engineering apprenticeship here with us and has stayed on as a Support Engineer!

  •  What is your name, age, place of birth, job role and length of service at Matrix IT

My name is Ben, I’m 19 and I was born in Portsmouth. I started at Matrix as an apprentice in 2017 and am now a Firstline Support Engineer

  • If you could do one thing in life what would that be?

Put an end to homelessness because nobody should feel that they have no other option but to sleep on the streets

  •  What are your hobbies and passions?

I have a passion for cars, electronic music and of course all things tech!

  • 4How would you describe yourself?

I’d describe myself as hard working, loyal and optimistic. People say that I have a good sense of humour

  •  Do you have any pets and children?

I have a pet Spoodle called Trixie. She’s a Springer Spaniel, Poodle cross and loves to dash around the house

  • What is your favourite possession?

My first laptop I got when I was 9 years old, it still works to this day!

  •  What is your favourite quote?

“You just need to be accepted for who you are and be proud of who you are and that is what I’m trying to do.” ~ Lewis Hamilton

  •  What motivates or inspires you?

My family, friends, and faith

  •  What are your goals for the future?

To fulfil my potential professionally, enjoy a happy family life, and make a difference in the world

  •  What do you love most about your job?

I love being part of a happy team, every day is different, and delivering solutions for our customers

  •  Describe your biggest achievement to date

I have just achieved a distinction from my apprenticeship at Matrix and have learnt a huge amount from it

  •  Who is your idol, mentor or someone that inspires you?

I’m very blessed to have strong role models in all areas of my life

  •  Why Matrix?

I’ve found Matrix to be an inspiring place to work and I can’t imagine being anywhere else. Highly productive and enjoy working with my colleagues

 

Staff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

This month’s staff bio is Gareth. Gareth is our Business Development Director here at Matrix. We hope you enjoy learning more.

  1. What is your name, age, place of birth, job role and length of service at Matrix IT?

Gareth McQuaid, 46, Keighley, Business Development Director, 9 months.

  1. If you could do one thing in life what would that be?

Rid the world of negative people.

  1. What are your hobbies and passions?

Cycling, sport, car restoration, self-development and furniture making.

  1. How would you describe yourself?

Different every day.

  1. Do you have any pets and children?

Two pets; a dog, Pip and a cat, Coco.

Two boys called Archie (22) and Ethan (20).

  1. What is your favourite possession?

A pocket knife my dad bought me when I was 10, oh and my Milgauss.

  1. What is your favourite quote?

‘Whether or not one can live with one’s passions, whether or not one can accept their law, which is to burn the heart they simultaneously exalt, that is the whole question’. ~ Albert Camus.

  1. What motivates or inspires you?

My family, TED talks and Mrs Robinson my French teacher from 32 years ago.

  1. What are your goals for the future?

Three things; to retire financially at 55, to maintain a strong family bond and to experience as much as I can before my last breath.

  1. What do you love most about your job?

The challenge, and the team.

  1. Describe your biggest achievement to date

Making my mum proud of all of my crazy expeditions and getting my 1st Dan, which was bloody hard work.

  1. Who is your idol, mentor or someone that inspires you?

Alan Sugar, Richard Branson and Edmund Hillary

  1. Why Matrix?

I like daily interaction. Being part of something that evolves and changes rather than a cog the system.  Plus its great working for the South Coast’s favourite IT company!

 

 

Why does your business need IT Support?

Why does your business need IT Support?

Why does your business need IT support? Depending on your company and its requirements, there are multiple ways that an outsourced IT department can help you. Whether you have 5 PCs and office phones or a whole server room and many users, this could benefit the quality of your network.

Services could include:

  • Emergency helpdesk support
  • Onsite maintenance visits
  • Hardware installation
  • Cybersecurity testing and upkeep
  • Systems, monitoring and patching
  • Office move assistance
  • Fully managed IT services
  • IT strategy planning

Having an IT support agreement can give you peace of mind that you can minimise technical faults and be able to resolve issues quickly.

It is standard for the majority of business employees to not have technical experience; IT Support works to educate employees as well as support them with any internal issues.

Are you planning on expanding your business? Employing more staff and extending your network? When planning your future business goals, IT Support is an important thing to consider.

At Matrix, we act as your ‘outsourced IT department’, providing help to businesses in Portsmouth, Fareham, Southampton and across the Hampshire region. To find out on how we can support your IT network, please contact a member of our team on 01329 888444 or email moreinfo@mtxit.com

Staff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

This month’s staff bio is Marco. Marco is our Senior IT Helpdesk engineer here at Matrix. Originally from South Africa, Marco moved to the UK in 2013 and joined Matrix in 2017.

 

  • What is your name, age, place of birth, job role and length of service at Matrix IT?

I am 37, born in Johannesburg South Africa and I have been a Senior IT Helpdesk engineer at Matrix for 2 years.

  • If you could do one thing in life what would that be?

Sort out all the nonsense that is happening in the world today.

  • What are your hobbies and passions?

Thankfully, my hobby is also my passion and that is to DJ. My other hobbies include playing golf, extreme sports and car racing.

  • How would you describe yourself?

Describe myself… Well, that’s a tough one. Outgoing, friendly and always striving to do better at any task that I carry out. Willing to help others when in need.

  • Do you have any pets and children?

I have no pets but I have one child, aged two and another child on the way, due in June of this year.

  • What is your favourite possession? 

This would be my first set of Dj turntables that I bought in 2000 which I still have.

  • What is your favourite quote?

‘I can’t means I can try’. My English school teacher told us that. Or, ‘nothing is impossible if you don’t try’.

  • What motivates or inspires you?

My family and positive recognition.

  • What are your goals for the future?

Continue to provide an income for my family.

  • What do you love most about your job?

Days keep you guessing what is next. Helping out engineers when stuck with an issue.

  • Describe your biggest achievement to date.

I have completed a Microsoft qualification which I was unable to do previously, due to financial issues. I have achieved a few things as a DJ and the biggest achievement of all is I got Married.

  • Who is your idol, mentor or someone that inspires you?

My idol as a DJ: Ricardo Da Costa. My idol as a person:  My brother. Work hard and you will achieve greatness.

  • Why Matrix? 

Matrix is a great company to work for. The staff are great fun and always in good spirit. We all work great as a team and are always willing to get involved and assist when a colleague is stuck on an issue. There is always a great atmosphere even when we are super busy.

Staff Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

This month’s staff bio is Lou, our Operations Director. She has been a loyal team member for twelve years. We hope you enjoy finding out a little bit more about the person behind the operation

  • What is your name, age, place of birth, job role and length of service at Matrix IT

Louise Gascoigne, Operations Director, 12 years at Matrix. Born in Aberdeen 😊

  • If you could do one thing in life what would that be?

I love music so I’d like to travel to as many cities in the world and watch a live band in each one.

  • What are your hobbies and passions?

My CV would say swimming and reading but really, it’s wine tasting.

  • How would you describe yourself?

Always busy! And funny, especially when I’m partaking in my hobby!

  • Do you have any pets and children?

I have a beautiful teenage daughter called Morgan and a gorgeous Jackapoo called Dudley.

He came along so at least someone would be pleased to see me!

  • What is your favourite possession?

My home, as that’s where I am the happiest.

  • What is your favourite quote?

One day your life will flash before your eyes, make sure it’s worth watching ~ Gerard Way

  • What motivates or inspires you?

I like a challenge as I can see the end goal and want to make sure I get there.

  • What are your goals for the future?

To live by my favourite quote and to make life more adventurous I am doing a Skydive on 6th April for charity.

  • What do you love most about your job?

Never a dull day, fast-paced changing environment and all the team get on well.

  • Describe your biggest achievement to date

I guess that would have to be starting as an administrator back in 2006 and being made a Director at Matrix in 2013.

  • Who is your idol, mentor or someone that inspires you?

John Cronin, Co-founder of Matrix. He got me to where I am today.

  • Why Matrix?

Matrix started out as a family business and despite our growth, we’ve maintained that ethos and care about our staff and customers.

 

Inspirational Inventors

Inspirational Inventors

Steve Wozniak – 1976

Steve Wozniak born in 1950, was a Co-founder of the biggest global tech company, Apple. From a young boy, he had a growing passion for electronics and was further educated in this field. After meeting Ronald Wayne* through Steve Jobs in the early 1970’s, they planned together their venture in electronics.

Wozniak was the engineer behind the first ever Apple computer; ‘Apple I computer’. They sold it for $666.66 per unit and manufactured only 200 of them. This was a very basic computer with no power supply, monitor or casing sold with it. Regardless, this was the start of this now global enterprise.

Although Steve Wozniak is still on the payroll of Apple, he has invested in his own ventures. In 1990 he joined the ‘Electronic Frontier Foundation’, giving criminal computer hackers legal aid through prosecution. In 2002, Wozniak founded ‘Zeus’, a company that would develop Wireless GPS Technology.

*Ronald Wayne was the 3rd Co-founder of Apple. He is regularly dismissed, as a week after trading,he cashed out his shares for $800.

Inspirational Inventors

Inspirational Inventors

Steve Jobs – 1955

Steve Jobs born in 1955 was one the co-founders of Apple. Apple is a technology company founded in 1976, now ranked the largest technology company in the world.

Steve Jobs first taste of the industry was at HP where at 13 years old did a summer internship at the HP factory. Meeting through mutual friends in 1969, Steve Wozniak and Jobs bonded over their love for technology.

At 17 years old and Wozniak 22, they illegally built and sold ‘blue boxes’, a machine that would allow you to make phone calls for free. They later stopped after almost being caught. Both have stated that without doing this they would not have learnt the ‘power of ideas’ and would not have had the success they did.

In 1972 Jobs studied physics, poetry and literature at Reed College. Though, after 18 months dropped out to explore India where he grew a passion for Buddhism. Being a poetic and deep-thinking person, Jobs even hired a group of people. This group people solely studied the emotions of opening a box with an Apple product inside.

Steve Jobs persistently wanted to become CEO, however, he was labelled a difficulty to work. He was consequently ousted from the Macintosh group and was unable to have say in products. Jobs later became CEO in 1997 to reframe the product line. He stayed as CEO until 2011 when he sadly passed away from pancreatic cancer.

Christmas Cheers, hacking fears, don’t end up in tears.

Christmas Cheers, hacking fears, don’t end up in tears.

As Christmas approaches, amidst sore heads, panic buying for our partners and Brexit being all over the news, we now have to remember more passwords, to avoid our well earned money being syphoned out of our accounts through the internet.

The list below, whilst not exhaustive, gives you a good start at protecting yourself against a malicious attack.

 

 

  • Approval word or phrase– all staff who make payments within a business should have a secret authorisation word. This will ensure that any email asking for immediate payment will be vetted.
  • Beware of urgency – most scams will try and make you commit to payments, logging in, checking payments immediately. Take a step back, think and then decide if this is legitimate or fake.
  • Simple passwords – use something other than Pa55w0rd, Letme1N, or your pet dogs name.
  • Don’t click on links in email – go to the site and login (look for the https: too)
  • Data collection without you knowing it? For example, have you seen the Facebook quiz that’s asks you for your maiden name, middle name and pets name to reveal you hidden screen name.  Ever thought that someone may be collecting vital information that could compromise your login?

Most people use the same password for several accounts, giving hackers access to everything if your password is exposed.

Check to see if your password has been compromised?

Check to see if email address has been compromised?

The safest way to store all of your passwords is by using a password manager, there are several good services for this including 1Password, LastPass, Dashlane and RoboForm. These services store all login credentials in one highly secure vault for which you only have to remember one password. Ensure whichever password manager you use has multi factor authentication when setting up, as this will help prevent unauthorised access to your account and compromising your valuable data.

If you do nothing else this Christmas.

Ensure you have a data backup plan.  This means a copy of all your valuable data somewhere other than on your network.  Having a hard drive connected to your server is no longer a solution as crypto software will encrypt both the server and the hard drive.

Finally…

We, at Matrix Business IT, hope you have found the above of use and wish you a very Merry Christmas.  We sincerely hope that your waist line is your worry at Christmas and not your online security.

Concerned? contact a member of the Matrix team on 01329 888444 or email moreinfo@mtxit.com.