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Integrated Business Technologies Blog

Integrated Business Technologies partners with Oklahoma businesses to help align technology needs with business goals.

Tip of the Week: Preparing For a Successful Upgrade

Tip of the Week: Preparing For a Successful Upgrade

A business’ IT solutions aren’t the kind of thing that you can worry about once and never touch again - this is why manufacturers and developers are always sending out upgrades. However, you also need to have a strategy ready before you go to implement these upgrades. For this week’s tip, we’ll review how to put this strategy together.

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Tip of the Week: Creating Process Documentation

Tip of the Week: Creating Process Documentation

Businesses are driven by processes. More often than not, these processes are fairly definitive - do this, then do that, then do the other thing - and require a set order of operations. There also happen to be a lot of these processes, which makes it important that they are well-documented so you and your employees can refer to this documentation later. Here, we’ll offer a few tips on how to best document a task.

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Tip of the Week: 5 Simple Browser Tricks

Tip of the Week: 5 Simple Browser Tricks

We all know how to use the Internet (you’re here now, after all), but there are a lot of hidden secrets to it that far fewer people know. Today, we’ll let you in on five of them to try and make some basics a little easier.

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Leave Your Moving Stresses In Your Old Office

Leave Your Moving Stresses In Your Old Office

There’s nothing quite like signing off on your first business space. It’s like officially saying, “My business is up and running. Visit my office today!” What’s even more exciting, however, is when your organization is growing so quickly that your business space becomes cramped or too small to grow unhindered. Either way, the way you set up your office is going to be an important part of running your business.

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Tip of the Week: Getting Back to Email Security Basics

Tip of the Week: Getting Back to Email Security Basics

Email is a particular favorite attack vector of many who would do wrong by your business, as it is easily one of the most used communications in most businesses today. Do your employees know how large of a responsibility they have to your business’ security just by using email? In order to prevent unfortunate security blunders, you need to make sure you and your employees know a few best practices when it comes to handling email securely.

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Tip of the Week: It Seems Counterproductive, But Taking Breaks Actually Improves Productivity

b2ap3_thumbnail_break_at_work_400.jpgToday’s workplace productivity has reached a peak, but thanks to this enhanced amount of work, the office environment can often feel hectic and stressful. This usually leads to workers skipping breaks just so that they don’t fall behind. While this maintains the semblance of productivity, it can often lead to a significant decrease in creativity and physical health.

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5 Tips to Consider for Your IT Budget

b2ap3_thumbnail_wasting_money_400.jpgPutting together an IT budget is an exceptionally tricky procedure. Every year presents unique technical challenges that need to be addressed, but the slightest miscalculation can be detrimental to an IT budget. Here are five tips to give your organization some breathing room when it comes to planning out next year’s IT expenses.

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Tip of the Week: 2 Easy Ways to Compare Edits Made to Your Document

b2ap3_thumbnail_diff_checker_400.jpgRevising documents is a task that can take forever, especially when multiple people have to make edits and suggestions. Before you know it, the sidebar will be filled with comments and the text will be so drastically changed that it will feel like you didn’t write it in the first place. In these instances, it might help to view the original document and the new one side by side. Here are two great tools that let you do so.

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Tip of the Week: 3 Ways to Recover from Your Vacation

b2ap3_thumbnail_post_vacation_day_dream_400.jpgEverybody loves a vacation from work, but nobody enjoys the stress of catching up when returning from said vacation. It doesn’t have to be this way. By taking a few precautions, you can avoid ever again having to say, “I need a vacation from my vacation.”

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Tip of the Week: The Best Workers are Looking for a Flexible Work Environment

b2ap3_thumbnail_happy_employees_flexible_workplace_400.jpgOne of the biggest challenges of running a business is attracting and retaining quality workers. To accomplish this, you’re going to need more than an old-fashioned “help wanted” ad. These days, you will need to offer what quality employees are looking for--a flexible workplace environment.

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Tip of the Week: Don’t Let Work Ruin Your Friendships, or Friendships Ruin Your Work

b2ap3_thumbnail_be_the_boss_400.jpgAs a business owner, you walk a fine line between boss and friend. While you want to be approachable and have a company culture that’s friendly, you can’t have your employees be your closest friends. Being too close to your staff will blur your authority, breed favoritism, and make it difficult to fire people; but not being friendly will make for a cold working environment. How do you manage this social dynamic?

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How Much is it the Employer’s Responsibility to Ensure Employee Productivity?

b2ap3_thumbnail_employer_responsibility_400.jpgEvery business owner knows what’s expected of them when it comes time to onboard a new hire. When the training videos are all watched and the new employee is lined up to kick butt and take names, is that when your job as overseer ends, or is there more that you can do to get more productivity out of your staff?

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Tip of the Week: Try an Ergonomic Workstation Setup

b2ap3_thumbnail_ergonomic_workplace_400.jpgSometimes you feel exhausted when you get out of work, but you have no idea why. It might be because you’re straining your eyes too much by staring at the computer screen. Or, maybe it’s your back that’s killing you, and even moving slightly is a pain. Perhaps it’s carpal tunnel ravaging the nerves in your wrist. If any of this sounds familiar, it’s safe to say that you could use a workstation overhaul.

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Tip of the Week: How to Give Your Team the Best Working Conditions

b2ap3_thumbnail_great_working_conditions_400.jpgWhen it comes to the workplace, people want more than they used to. It used to be all about the salary and decent working conditions, but that has significantly changed in the past decade. In order to attract the best talent and stay ahead of the competition, you want to provide optimal working conditions when possible. Thankfully, by providing your team with a few accommodations, it doesn’t have to be difficult for everyone to enjoy their workday.

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New Office Trend “Hoteling” Provides Workers a Collaborative Work Environment

b2ap3_thumbnail_hoteling_office_trend_400.jpgEveryone is well aware of how mobile technology is changing everything. Therefore, it's a matter of time before we see new tech drastically change the office layout. This is what's happening in forward-thinking offices with a trend called "hoteling." If your business enjoys mobile technology and you want to get the most collaboration out of your staff, then hoteling is right for you.

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Tip of the Week: How to Prevent IT Equipment Theft

b2ap3_thumbnail_device_theft_400_20141010-142847_1.jpgHow familiar are you with the IT equipment owned by your business? If you don't keep detailed records of your equipment and enact security measures and policies, then you're making it easy for theft to occur. We've written a lot about protecting your business from data theft, but it's equally important that you take precautions to safeguard your stuff.

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3 Sure Ways to Increase Workplace Productivity

b2ap3_thumbnail_stay_productive_for_your_business_400.jpgThe office is a unique place designed solely for the purpose of getting work done. Therefore, no matter how your workplace is designed, there's always room to improve it in order to squeeze out a few more precious minutes of productivity from each worker. As productivity goes, every minute saved adds up!

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Troubleshoot Performance Issues with These 3 Network Cabling Tips

b2ap3_thumbnail_useful_cabling_tips_400.jpgWhen you experience an error or a performance issue with your company's computer system, you will troubleshoot the problem in hopes of resolving it quickly. Before you open the case of your hardware and start messing with components, check your cables. Even a small cabling issue can cause big problems with your entire network.

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Prevent the Summer Heat from Roasting Your Servers with this Portable Solution

b2ap3_thumbnail_severs_get_hot_400.jpgTechnically speaking, it needs to be 158°F for a raw egg to become firm. The summer heat doesn't get that hot, but outdoor objects like sidewalks and car hoods that come in contact with it can. Thus the phrase, "It's so hot you can fry an egg on the sidewalk!" When it's hot outside, you need to keep your server units cool inside.

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Turn Up the Cuteness with Pets at Work!

b2ap3_thumbnail_pets_at_work_400.jpgWe've come across a fun, furry idea to relieve workplace stress. Kitties and puppies! In a fun twist to the workday, many companies are allowing staff to bring their pets with them to the office, and the results are adorable!

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Winning from Home Part One: Employees Benefit

b2ap3_thumbnail_working_from_home_400.jpgThey say that home is where the heart is, and thanks to easily accessible remote networking tools, home can also be where your work is! One evidence of just how much employees love working from home comes from a recent survey of office workers where 25% admitted that they would take a reduction in salary if it meant they could work from home.

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How to Reduce the Noise from Your Servers

b2ap3_thumbnail_serverbay400.jpgOne IT problem that you may have heard about is server noise. A server unit is a noisy piece of equipment because it comes with multiple fans used to keep the machine cool. One big reason why servers are banished to their own room is because of all the noise they make. Here's what you can do to quiet your servers.

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Make Gmail More Efficient With This Trick

b2ap3_thumbnail_gmaily400.jpgOne of the biggest time wasters we all face is sorting through our email inbox. This is a tedious task made worse because you have to sort through emails from the same sources every day, like newsletters and social media updates. Here's a tip to help you better organize your incoming Gmail messages.

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Windows XP is a Liability for Your Business

b2ap3_thumbnail_xtothep400.jpgIf you are still running your business or home PC on Windows XP, then it's vital that you upgrade to a newer OS. Yes, your decade-old Windows XP system may be working just fine, and therefore, you may not feel the urgency to upgrade, but you will feel the heat next year when Microsoft stops supporting its popular operating system.

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5 Qualities of Influential Business Leadership

b2ap3_thumbnail_success400.jpgAs a business owner, your position of leadership is crucial to the success of your company. If you've been appointed a leadership role, you are undoubtedly making key decisions and setting the tone of your office culture. You want to be a leader worth following.

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5 Tips to Boost Your Computer’s Lifespan

b2ap3_thumbnail_cpulife400.jpgWe all dread that moment. Whether it was a power surge, an accidental water spill, or a swift roundhouse kick out of frustration, your business computer is dead and needs to be replaced. While no computer will last forever, you can extend your PC's life with proper care. Here are tips that will boost your computer's lifespan.

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4 Mobile Technology Features Every Business Needs

b2ap3_thumbnail_mobileblue400.jpgAre you looking to enhance your business with new mobile technologies to give your workforce the competitive edge? If so, then we recommend that before you go out and purchase new mobile devices, you first need to understand the technology requirements of your organization. Here are four crucial needs you will want to consider.

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Are Smartphones Dumbing Down Your Office?

b2ap3_thumbnail_smartphone400.jpgAccording to a recent survey by Experian Marketing Services, the average American spends approximately 58 minutes per day on their smartphone. Those of us who are gadget lovers may respond by saying, "One hour, is that all?" A device taking up one hour per day has huge implications with how we both live and do business.

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Have a Backup for Your Backup

b2ap3_thumbnail_BackupBackup400.jpgWe often talk about the need to back up your data, but did you know that it is also a best practice to back up your hardware? Backing up your hardware works differently than data backup; whereas data backup involves network devices and a cloud, backing up your hardware is a simple matter of having extra computer components on your premise.

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Tip: Use Macros to Save Your Place

b2ap3_thumbnail_MacroText400.jpgIf you are working on a document that is several pages long, then you know the frustration of getting lost in a sea of text. Often overlooked by the casual user, Macros are great productivity tools that can be utilized for several handy tasks, including giving you the ability to bookmark your work areas in a Word document.

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A Clean Computer is a Happy Computer

b2ap3_thumbnail_HappyComputer400.jpgHopefully, you have a list of personal items that you regularly clean. Obvious belongings that need a good scrubbing are things like bed sheets, dishes, and your bathroom floor. If your computer is not on your cleaning chore list, then it needs to be. A clean computer is a happy computer, and not disgusting like a dirty one.

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Coffitivity, What Creativity Sounds Like

a1sx2_Thumbnail1_ListenCoff400.jpgWhen it comes to listening to music while getting work done, it seems like you can either do it or you can't. Some office workers need absolute silence to get work done. Other people can turn up the volume, tune out the world, and still think clearly. Coffitivity is an audio app that brings balance between the right and left brain.

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Use Spaghetti to Improve Workflow

Typically, the only way that spaghetti improves the office is by providing a low cost meal during a lunch break. As it turns out, spaghetti can be used as more than lunch; spaghetti charts are a great productivity tool that can improve your workflow, eliminate transport waste, and save you money.

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Tip: How To Set Your Homepage on Your Web Browser

b2ap3_thumbnail_Homepage400.jpgIs your web browser's home page looking drab and boring? Do you wish that you could change it to something fresh and exciting but you just don't know how to do it? Introducing Home Page Settings! By using Home Page Settings, you can give your Web Browser that fresh look you have always wanted, and the best part is that it's free!

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Schedule Your E-mail and Increase Productivity

b2ap3_thumbnail_emailoverload400_20130425-195852_1.jpgAt work, it takes discipline to avoid distractions and stay on task. Thanks to mobile devices notifying you of every update from every friend, distractions at the office are at an all-time high. By scheduling the times to check your messages, you can stay connected, lessen distractions, and maximize productivity.

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Forgot to Save? How to Recover an Unsaved Document

b2ap3_thumbnail_RecoverDoc400.jpgHave you ever closed an application and accidently hit 'Don't Save'? Poof. In one forgetful moment all of your progress is gone and your stomach turns into a giant knot. Before you go out and do something crazy, like forsake technology and modern civilization, you will first want to see if Windows was nice and automatically saved you a copy.

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Goal Setting Tips From Jerry Seinfeld

b2ap3_thumbnail_seinfeld400.jpgThe Seinfeld Productivity Calendar is a simple way to coax you into accomplishing your goals in a very primal, if not OCD, kind of way. It's named after its creator, Jerry Seinfeld, who is known for much bigger things. Jerry Seinfeld is not only a sophisticated actor/comedian, but he also has a very interesting way to get things done.

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5 New Features with Microsoft OneNote 2013

b2ap3_thumbnail_One-Note.jpgMicrosoft Office 2013 will be released during Q1 of 2013. The previews we have seen look promising, Office 365 has cloud-based services and touch screen features that work well with the new Windows 8 OS. We will highlight a few of these upgrades by looking at five new features with OneNote 2013.

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Tip: Good Filenames Will Save You Time

filenames10.jpgWhat feelings are conjured up by the phrase, "file not found?" If you are unable to locate an important file on your PC, you are going to have a bad time. Insult is added to injury when you cannot find a file that you created because you do not remember what you named it.

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Tip of the Week: View Text in Windows Clearly

b2ap3_thumbnail_focustext10.jpgSpending hours every day staring at a computer monitor can cause strain to your eyeballs. Computer vision syndrome (CVS) affects 50 to 90 percent of computer workers physically with headaches, eye twitching, and physical fatigue. CVS can decrease productivity and even increase work errors. To help alleviate eye strain, Windows has an easy-to-use feature called ClearType.

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Stolen Device Damage Control

laptopstealer.jpgThe smartphone ownership rate for American adults increased to 46% in 2012, this according to a study by Pew Research. This study does not include other mobile devices like tablets, laptops, and notebooks, but the use of these devices is also growing, with worldwide sales for just smartphones and tablets projected to hit 1.2 billion in 2013.  

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Tips to Effectively On Board New Employees

b2ap3_thumbnail_hiredstamp.jpgEvery business is striving to grow, but with growth comes new challenges like hiring new staff. If you have a growing business model, then you likely achieved this by adopting smooth procedures. The same principle applies to growing your staff; and with solid on boarding procedures in place, you can get more performance out of your staff.

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