IT Strategy: What Is It, Why You Need It And How We Can Help

IT Strategy: What Is It, Why You Need It And How We Can Help

In the world of business, strategy is an important concept. It is the plan that outlines how you will reach your goals. Even if you have defined your aims and objectives, without a strategy, you won’t know how to reach them. You might have an overall business strategy but do you have an IT strategy? The two should go hand in hand as most organisations rely so heavily on IT to survive that without it, there would be no business. If this is the first you’ve heard of IT strategy and you’re not sure if you need one, this blog is for you.  

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Is Your Firewall Protecting Your IT Systems From Remote Logins?

Is Your Firewall Protecting Your IT Systems From Remote Logins?

Let’s set the scene. It’s 2021, and much like 2020, the majority of the UK’s office-based workforce is working remotely.  This dispersal of people and endpoints makes keeping track of and protecting logins to your IT hardware and cloud-based systems almost impossible without the help of a firewall.  

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If You Only Choose 5 Business IT Services for 2021 Make Sure You Pick These

If You Only Choose 5 Business IT Services for 2021 Make Sure You Pick These

2020 has certainly been a tumultuous year for businesses.  With the Covid-19 pandemic forcing many companies to adapt the way they work and home working becoming normal in many industries, it has certainly been a year that has changed the way we need and use IT. Going forward in 2021, and what we hope will be a much more stable year, there will be an increased demand for remote access solutions for businesses that continue to accommodate homeworking, as well as an increased focus on cyber security to protect against the additional threats the pandemic has exposed. With that in mind, if you can only choose 5 of our business IT services for the new year, here are the five we think you should pick. 

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Inviting Guests using Microsoft Teams and iPhone glitch

If you send out an invite and your guest (non-user of Teams) cannot connect then follow these simple steps.

1.       Click on the error (Safari cannot open the page because the address is invalid).

2.       Download and install Teams from the Apps store

3.       When prompted for a login ignore and close the Teams app

 

Upon clicking on the invite again your iPhone will launch the Teams app and ask for your guest username allowing access to the meeting.

Everyday is a school day

The easiest and quickest way to archive email, instead of deleting it in Microsoft Outlook is to simply press the Backspace key rather than the Delete key.

Personally I didn’t know about this shortcut and estimate it will save me hours over the course of a year.

Hope you find it of use.

 

 

 

If you do one thing today…

Most clients are use Microsoft Office 365 Business Premium daily.  If you are, then you should be taking advantage of the new Microsoft App, by combining the Office suite with some great hacks, this is the app of choice when on the move.

The main features of this app are:

  • Everything in one app, central and quickly accessible
  • Pull in files from other platforms such as Dropbox
  • Word dictation – use your voice to write documents
  • Excel cards view – simplify editing Excel on a smaller screen
  • Outline to PowerPoint – you type, PowerPoint Designer does the rest

Other snazzy features improve common tasks, enabling quick notes, scanning docs into Word / Excel, converting to PDF and signing PDF’s.

Personally, I find the ‘home screen’ invaluable, as it shows my document history, recommended docs, topped with any notes I’ve added. I have found that I am using this app more on my iPad to create documents providing a more fluid experience between devices.  Prior to the app, my go to was my laptop for editing and the iPad for viewing.

As is the Microsoft way, their products improve each version, I for one am looking forward to an even more feature rich app.

Matrix exceeds expectation

Our team have managed to support, deploy and enable a staggering 2156 users to work from home last week.  Whilst amid arranging VPN’s, remote desktops, ironing out the odd person who took their workstation home, we too have been deploying our remote working strategy.

remote office

With the enablement of cloud adoption, we can use the tools needed to support our clients from anywhere (subject to having internet!).  I want to personally thank our team for their commitment in providing this level of service without complaint.  Juggling working from home with children, cats, dogs and a 98% support ticket increase can’t have been easy but we work together, even remotely.

Upon returning to the office we will be reviewing our clients’ remote working needs and have set an R&D budget aside to build a remote access platform for your business.  This will harness the power of Microsoft Azure and allow businesses to benefit from a robust on demand subscription-based model.

Farewell old friend, Windows 7 goes end of life.

windows 7 end of life

Today marks the end of the Windows 7 operating system and potentially poses a headache for business owners.

Windows 7 has been around for 10 years and today marks the official Microsoft end of support for their amazing operating system.  Whilst it will work and function the same tomorrow as it does today, Microsoft will no longer provide patching for any vulnerabilities found, so much so GCHQ have issued a warning not to use Windows 7 for banking from today.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC).

A NCSC spokesperson said: “The NCSC would encourage people to upgrade devices currently running Windows 7, allowing them to continue receiving software updates which help protect their devices.

“We would urge those using the software after the deadline to replace unsupported devices as soon as possible, to move sensitive data to a supported device and not to use them for tasks like accessing bank and other sensitive accounts.”

“They should also consider accessing email from a different device.”

Remember the WannaCry ransomware attack?

2017 brought new malware attacks through finding vulnerabilities within operating systems, namely Windows XP and Windows 7.  Hacker seek to extract data and encrypt it or sell it on the dark web.  Businesses need to protect against this type of malicious activity to protect their data, comply with GDPR and most importantly ensure their clients data is secure.  A lack of security patching from today could lead to this very problem happening again.

What next?

Our advice is to upgrade your hardware which will normally include the Windows 10 operating system.  This way you benefit from new hardware and the latest operating system.  Windows 10 will provide updates, patches but more importantly closer integration with Office 365 and Azure cloud services.

Additionally, most software vendors will provide support on the Windows 10 platform.

If you need any advice or a quote for upgrading your systems call us today on 01329 888444 or Click here to email us