Did you know that an inefficient business can cost you 30 percent of your revenue?
What’s more, inefficiency can take a toll on both employee and customer satisfaction. Unfortunately, many businesses deal every day with inefficiency in areas they don’t even realize.
The solutions are sometimes simple, like booking flights through a different airport. Or they may require a bigger change, like overhauling your company’s phone system.
In every single case though, the increase in efficiency makes up for the effort.
Are you ready to transform your business into a well-oiled machine? Then keep reading to find out the steps you can take today to increase business efficiency.
Identify What Needs To Change
The first step to efficiency in business is identifying what isn’t working.
Common issues in businesses include out-of-date or redundant processes. Or it could be that procedures are needlessly complicated. To pinpoint what needs to change, every area of the business should be looked at.
Often the areas that are inefficient come as a surprise. These include unnecessary in-person meetings that could take place over the phone. Often these meetings cut into valuable time and are not focused enough.
Not allowing employees to take breaks can also cause poor performance. This is because we have a limited capacity to maintain concentration for long time periods.
Improving communication, however, is one of the top ways to improve business efficiency. Though emails are the most popular form of business communication, they aren’t always the best method.
An alternative is to try instant messaging apps like Slack. If the purpose of the communication is to keep a team updated, task management apps like Basecamp can work just as well.
Help Employees (And You) Manage Interruptions
Morning meeting at 8 a.m. Team meeting at 10:30 a.m. Lunch from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. Ever had a morning that started like this? Everyone has. By the time afternoon rolls around, no actual work has been done.
In order to become more efficient, you and your staff need to limit interruptions.
An easy way to get started on this is to schedule multiple meetings on the same day. That way, the staff knows that the rest of the week is for actively working. If they can work uninterrupted, they can focus and do their tasks more efficiently.
Meetings aren’t the only culprits though. You and your coworkers will get much more efficient when other distractions are eliminated. These include notifications from chats, email alerts, and software pop-ups.
After every distraction, it takes time for you to bounce back and resume work effectively. Take advantage of one of the many apps and tools that can help, including Pause Inbox for Gmail.
Stop One Minute Meetings
Again, on the topic of meetings, not all are created equal. Someone stops by your office or you meet them in the cafeteria. A common scenario in work life every day is the “Got a minute?” meetings.
The thing is, it almost never takes “just a minute”. Realistically, nothing important can be accomplished in such a short period of time. So these meetings, or more accurately, interruptions, often stretch to 10 or 15 minutes of time wasted.
To solve this, schedule short meetings with a set time span. Set the topics as well so that you know exactly what needs to be discussed. It’s extremely simple to request these meetings too.
Send an email that asks to “meet for 15 minutes at 12 p.m. to discuss this project’s budget”. If you’re on the receiving end of a meeting request, ask the person to send you it in this exact format and see how well it works.
Think Long Term With Your Tech
Technology is often one of the areas where businesses lag behind on efficiency. If hardware becomes obsolete or software isn’t up to the task, a whole business can be brought to a standstill.
Improving business efficiency means creating a long-term technology plan.
Working with network vendors and outside IT professionals can help. Set your business’ long-term objectives and communicate them to your IT people so the technology you use is appropriate for its needs.
New technology like cloud computing can make your business more efficient and productive. What’s more, it accomplishes this in a cost-effective way. Data is held securely in an offsite location, which increases security and minimizes risk.
It also allows for easy collaboration between workers. Additionally, when they aren’t in the office they can access the cloud from home or on-site at a client.
Use Software To Manage Tasks
Thanks to technology, we are spoiled for choice as far as methods to communicate and collaborate. In the modern workplace, email is not the ideal method in every situation.
For tasks, the most effective tactic is to get specific task management software like Trello. Software like this keeps messages and work progress all in the same place. It can also help bring clarity on the responsibility for each task.
No longer will someone be able to say they weren’t notified of something. And no longer will an endless email back-and-forth need be the norm. With today’s software, everyone can work more efficiently and stay on task.
When you do choose a software, make sure you have the best IT services to back it up. A good IT firm can even create a custom dashboard or connect systems together so the software works for your exact needs.
Efficiency also applies to the art of communication. External or customer-facing, as well as internal communication among employees, are both equally relevant here.
For customers, speed and knowledgeable answers are of prime importance.
A solution that integrates CRM or customer relationship management can enhance your entire communications strategy. To make customer communications more efficient, link your phone system to a CRM program.
This way, customer service representatives always have the most relevant customer information to hand. A CRM program can include details like a customer’s address as well as records of their past calls or emails.
Internally, you should also be encouraging employees to communicate in a more efficient way. As a manager or company owner, you can’t be everywhere at once. Employees can spot areas where improvements can be made.
Encouraging employees to openly communicate with management can help bring suggestions on how to improve efficiency. Promote a culture where everyone feels that they can voice concerns and feedback on the way things are run.
Encourage Face To Face Communication
In many instances, we think that virtual communication is more efficient. However, often it takes longer and is more prone to misunderstandings than a face to face conversation.
Employees who can talk face to face often have better relationships and are more productive than those who email or chat. Make sure your employees feel comfortable talking to each other.
Automate Whenever Possible
Whenever you can, automate your processes. It’s a necessity and not a luxury in today’s business environment.
Monotonous tasks take away from employees’ time. They can also cause employees to become bored, stressed and prone to making mistakes.
The great thing about automating and taking away these tasks from your workers? Now your workforce is able to focus on tasks that need a human touch or critical thinking skills
Don’t know where to start? Think about the most repetitive tasks that are necessary to run the company. It may be sending out receipts to vendors. Or it could be sending pay stubs at the end of the month.
Initially, these new processes may cost extra, but they will pay off in the long run in efficiency.
Digital Integration Is Your Friend
If your company is struggling to keep up with the pace of digital transformation, you’re not alone. However, if you want to be competitive and modern, digital integration is non-negotiable.
Not being digitally integrated can cost your business in terms of efficiency and competitiveness. To combat this, companies are coming up with novel ways of incorporating the advantages of digital in their business.
One company, Jetsmarter, made digital the core of their business model. Their app streamlined the work that would previously be done over the phone. In doing so, it both reduced the time it took and got rid of unanswered calls.
Explore how digital integration can automate tasks, and free up employee time. Communication can be faster and easier by taking advantage of digital solutions. Problems are discovered earlier, and collaboration is easier and smoother.
Get A Managed Service Provider And Improve Business Efficiency
Managing a network is not the best way to use your employees’ time. It could be time for you to hire a managed service provider for network administration. Not only will it make your business more efficient, but it’ll also be more profitable.
Outsourcing managed services can cover just about everything you’ll need from a 24/7 help desk, to monitoring your network around the clock. Your IT staff will then be able to use their time to focus on other IT tasks.
Reduce Unnecessary Travel Time
Travel is a big part of life when you’re a professional. It’s also an area that greatly affects the health and productivity of both you and your employees. All companies can take a look at their business travel and make it more efficient.
One solution is to have a networked phone solution. Web conferencing and video calls can do plenty to reduce the time wasted traveling to offsite meetings. This also applies to training sessions. Even better, your company will save money too.
You can also consider the modes of travel you’re using.
When choosing to go by air or land, for example, think critically about the advantages of each. For example, an employee could get more work done en route if they went by plane compared to driving.
Connections and layovers are often extremely inefficient. A simple thing like choosing a more streamlined airport can make a journey much faster and smoother.
The result of all this? The time that would have been spent on traveling can be used to get work done.
Be Intentional When Processes Have To Change
Here’s the thing about efficiency in business, sometimes the established process is there for a reason. In some cases, surprisingly, sticking with that process can be the more efficient choice.
When you do need to change a process, be intentional about it. Changing for the sake of change itself isn’t the best way to run a business.
Say for example you have a project already in progress. By trying to be faster and more efficient you could end up cutting corners. When that happens and something gets missed, later on, you’ll spend more time and money to fix it.
Things can sometimes go much more smoothly if we work within the existing process and make minor tweaks.
This doesn’t mean that you’re stuck with an inefficient process just because it’s always been done that way. You can still implement the changes discussed here, but do it intentionally.
Don’t start to implement efficiency tactics when you’re behind on a project. Or because there’s a need to shake things up. All changes must be done intentionally and you should communicate with your team about them.
Know When To Sacrifice Efficiency For Your Goals
Though you have several ways of improving business efficiency, you should know when to stop implementing them. Not everything should be automated, and valuable meetings shouldn’t be cut short if they run over time.
Especially for small to medium-sized companies, too much efficiency can stunt growth. If your company has goals that involve growing larger, efficiency may be sacrificed in the short term for long-term growth.
Put An Efficiency Plan In Place
Once you have a plan to increase business efficiency in place, get feedback. Your employees are the best ones to let you know if your process is working or not.
IT solutions are a critical part of an efficient business. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you with your efficiency goals using the power of technology.
10 Apps to Help You Save Money on Technology in 2019
Are high technology costs cutting into your bottom-line? There’s an app for that. Here are 10 tech apps to help you save more money in 2019.
You’re using state-of-the-art tech to do simple tasks like take notes or keep a calendar. The cost of these programs start to add up, and your bill is looking higher each month.
Right now there are 3.8 million mobile apps available for Android and 2 million apps for Apple users. What do apps have to do with anything? Lucky for you, there are several tech apps out there that can help you cut costs in your business.
Best Tech Apps of 2019
Picking the right apps comes down to how well they streamline daily processes for busy employees. Business apps are designed to make multitasking easier while keeping employees updated on new projects–some apps even allow employees to communicate and contribute ideas on one platform.
With so many great apps to choose from, it can be overwhelming to choose the right tech apps for your company. That’s why we’ve narrowed it down for you. Here are 10 of the best tech apps that’ll help you save some cash:
Trello takes project management to a whole other level. Trello is the perfect way to get organized–you won’t have to worry about losing money from a lack of productivity and coordination. Even better, you can access Trello whether you’re on the go or in the office.
So, what exactly is Trello? It’s a project management app that visually lays out to-do lists and future plans.
Your plans are displayed on moveable “cards” or lists that you have the freedom to arrange on the page. You have the option to comment, add an attachment, or provide a checklist on every card. Basically, it’s like an interactive digital bulletin board.
You can give other people access to your lists–members of your team can check off tasks that they’ve done or add important dates to the calendar. The people you’ve invited can also be assigned certain tasks so it’s easier to remember who’s doing what.
Trello makes it simple to arrange your plans in the Getting Things Done (GTD) format. Make a separate board for your inbox, next actions, in progress tasks, pending tasks, done tasks, and future tasks.
If you find yourself running around, not knowing the status of projects or tasks, then you need Trello. Setting up your planner using the GTD framework on Trello can make your office life much more organized.
As for pricing, Trello is free to sign up. But if you want more advanced features you’ll have to pay a fee.
Everyone knows that managing money is important, especially when the money is earned through a business. Calculating your money incorrectly can cause a whole host of problems. Lenders might not want to loan you any funding, and you won’t be able to file your taxes accurately, getting you into trouble with the IRS.
Quickbooks is an accounting software designed to prevent any miscalculations. You can keep track of your bills, income, invoices, and payment all in one program.
You might be intimidated by accounting software, but Quickbooks is different. It’s designed with the user in mind, meaning it has easy-to-use features and a simple interface. In other words, you don’t have to be a mathematician or accountant to use Quickbooks.
Do you dread tax season? Quickbooks can help with that. It allows you to transfer your income and spending data to your tax software, making it faster and easier to file your taxes.
If your income and expense data is stored in Microsoft Excel or another program, don’t worry–you can transfer this data to Quickbooks.
You also have the opportunity to create custom invoices, charts, plans and data sheets in Quickbooks. Although Quickbooks offers several templates you can choose from, you’re able to put a personal flair on them. Add your logo and any additional information to your invoices.
The pricing for Quickbooks ranges from $10-$60 a month depending on what features you want. You can also opt to purchase the desktop version for a flat-out price of $299.95 for Quickbooks Pro, and $499.95 for Quickbooks Premier.
3. Google Drive
Maybe you’ve been spending too much money on expensive hard drives to store the massive amount of files that your company has accumulated. These files are important–you can’t just delete them to make room. Instead, upload these files online using Google Drive.
Google Drive is perfect for businesses that need to store and share documents. Simply put, it’s a file storage system that’s completely secure. You can access these files from virtually anywhere and on most devices.
You have the power to choose who you want to have access to certain documents. They’re able to read, edit, and comment on any files that you share with them. This is helpful when you’re working with a client on a project or if employees need to collaborate.
Google Drive also comes with Docs, Sheets, and Slides. These features allow you to make documents, spreadsheets, or presentations all in one program.
Worried about not having access to files when you have no internet connection? Google Drive allows you to view and edit documents offline as well.
Google Drive is free for 15GB of space. For more storage, you’ll have to pay at least $1.99 every month.
Everyone takes notes. Whether you write a reminder on your hand, or if you jot down a date on a slip of paper, quick notetaking is something that everyone does. But it’s easy to lose that piece of paper or wash the ink off of your hand.
Instead, use Evernote, one of the new tech apps to take notes with.
You can store and organize a variety of media on Evernote ranging from photos, videos, and audio. These files are stored on the cloud and can be made accessible to others.
What can you upload to Evernote? Pretty much everything. Notes, photos, screenshots, web pages, and more can all be stored on Evernote. Yes, even handwritten notes can be uploaded to Evernote.
The most unique part about Evernote is that you can add physical documents to your database. All you have to do is scan important papers like receipts, bills, and invoices, and upload them to Evernote.
Even if you upload thousands of notes, you’ll still be able to find them. Evernote’s sophisticated search system can dig up just the file you’re looking for.
The most basic version of Evernote won’t cost you. However, if you want more features, you can sign up for Evernote Premium at $7.99 per user each month, or Evernote Business at $14.99 per user each month.
Looking for an effective save money app? Check out Digit.
Saving money is probably always on your mind. But what if it didn’t have to be? Instead of constantly stressing about your expenditures, have Digit take care of it for you.
Digit looks at your spending patterns and saves money for you every day. You’ll have to make a savings account with Digit. You don’t have to worry about your funds being compromised by hackers–this high-tech app uses encryption to secure your money and personal information.
Digit quietly takes money out of your checking account and puts it into a savings account. You’ll usually see around $2-$17 being taken out every few days. You can always change the amount taken out if it’s too much or too little.
Digit can be used on an Android or iPhone. To access information about your checking or savings account, you have to type certain commands to their chatbot–it’s just like texting.
Digit costs $2.99 per month, but it’ll help you save up some cash in the long run.
Businesses are always looking for ways they can make the workday go more smoothly. Keeping track of the way you and your employees spend the day can help improve workplace productivity. With more productive employees, more money will follow.
Toggl is a top tech app for businesses looking to keep tabs on productivity. If you’re not sure how much time you spend on unimportant tasks instead of paying attention to huge projects, you should definitely try out Toggl. You’ll most likely find that you’re not using your time as efficiently as you could be.
Toggl’s time tracking feature is designed to help companies stay on task. You can use Toggl to see how much time it takes you to do certain tasks. At the end of the day, you can view a report that’ll show you how you spent your time.
You can also use time tracking to help you determine how much you should be paid for completing a job. If you charge your clients by the hour, use Toggl to time yourself during the job and give your client the proper price.
If you’re worried about how other employees are allocating their time, Toggl can keep track of their time as well. You’ll be able to see the number of hours they worked, and see what tasks they spent their time on.
The starter pack for Toggle is $9 per month, while Premium costs $18 per month. Custom pricing is available for enterprises.
Keeping track of employee-initiated expenses can be frustrating. Instead of stuffing receipts in your pockets and packing tons of reports into filing cabinets, you should go paperless. With Expensify, you’re able to accurately monitor your company’s spending on travel and entertainment, enabling you to put limits on spending.
Expensify provides a way to for you to monitor expenses on the go. Your employees’ spending is automatically reported by select companies like Uber, Priceline, Lyft and more.
Users of Expensify can take pictures of receipts, which will be made into an expense report. Expensify finds the date, seller, and the amount of money spent on the receipt automatically.
Employers can also flag purchases that need approval by a manager. Anything else can be purchased with no review needed. Reimbursing employees for these expenses is always fast–it only takes 24 hours for the money to be deposited into the employee’s account.
For a small team of employees, the cost is $5 per month. The Corporate plan costs $9 per month, while the Enterprise package requires custom pricing.
Better communication between employees means better productivity. Better productivity results in more money. Slack can make office communication become superb.
The name of the app may make it sound like no work will get done, but the opposite is actually true. Slack allows employees to message each other from a computer or phone. You won’t need any time-consuming meetings just to approve a plan–you can do it over Slack instead.
Employees communicate on different channels that are categorized by certain topics. Other employees can easily find the information in conversations by searching through the messages. Voice calls, video calls, and screen sharing are more helpful features offered by Slack.
You can upload files from Dropbox or Google Drive into Slack, as well as any images, documents, or videos from your computer. This allows employees to convey important information or get feedback on their projects.
The basic plan for Slack is free. However, if you want more features with the Standard plan you’ll be paying $6.67 per month. You can also choose the Plus plan which will cost you $12.50 per month.
Managing your business’ organization is essential in being a successful and profitable company. Instead of interrupting employees to ask what stage of a project they’re at, why not view it on a computer?
Like Trello and Evernote, Asana is another app used to organize tasks and keep tabs on employee progress. With Asana, your team will be more organized and collaborative than ever.
Employers are able to set deadlines, give descriptions of tasks, as well as give projects to specific employees. You’ll no longer have to guess when a project is going to be finished. Simply go on Asana and see what stage of the project the employees are at.
Asana also allows you to create a timeline to help you visualize every stage of a plan. All team members can see the same plan–that way they all know what’s going on. If something goes wrong, you can always edit the deadlines.
You can get organized with the Premium plan of Asana for just $9.99 per month.
Need an affordable way to market your company? Stop paying for expensive marketing campaigns and try MailChimp.
MailChimp is one of the top tech apps for marketing. It automatically sends out marketing campaigns through emails that can be delivered to your clients. With MailChimp, you can get more awareness for your company.
MailChimp makes marketing campaigns easy. You’re able to design and send ad campaigns all on MailChimp. Whether you want to create an ad for emails, Facebook, Instagram, Google, and more MailChimp can help with that.
You might not be a graphic designer, but that’s okay. MailChimp offers a simple email designer that you can use to customize your emails. Just drag and drop any images into MailChimp’s template, and you’re on your way to making a great campaign.
You can use MailChimp for free or upgrade to the Grow plan for $10 per month and up. For more marketing tools, choose the Pro plan at $199 per month and up.
Using Apps To Save Time and Money
These tech apps are designed for businesses that want to save money. You’ll be surprised that something as simple as an app can boost your business’ productivity and rake in more profit.
For more advice on successfully running your business, check out our blog.
Status: Critical (Windows 10 computers)
Effect: Potential Loss of Data
What you need to do: If your computer is asking to install updates, do NOT do so at this time.
Please pass this around your office and to family/friends who may use Windows 10.
The latest major update for Windows 10 from Microsoft (1809 Fall Update) has been reported to be deleting all files from Documents and other folders on the local computer.
Microsoft has paused the rollout of Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1809), the latest version of the Windows 10 operating system, which Microsoft released on the week of Tuesday, October 2. In a support document updated yesterday, October 6, the Redmond-based OS maker said, “We have paused the rollout of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1809) for all users as we investigate isolated reports of users missing some files after updating”.
Our recommendation, for now, is to NOT install the v1809 until Microsoft resolves the issue. Once we feel confident that the issue is resolved we will notify you, so you may proceed with updating your systems.
A note to our Managed Services partners. We have disabled the installation of v1809 for 90 days as a precautionary step. Other updates that we have deemed necessary and safe will continue to roll out automatically.
Thank you for taking the time to read this bulletin and we will keep you posted on further updates.
The Complete Guide on How to Protect Your Business From a Cyber Attack
Learn everything you need to know about how to keep your business safe and protected from a potential cyber attack with this must-read guide!
Did you know that one of the biggest threats to your business isn’t a big-box competitor, a loss of clients and revenue, or even a weak digital marketing and content strategy?
Instead, the threat that so many companies only start to understand once it’s too late is the threat of a cyber attack or hacker. In fact, nearly 60% of small businesses that suffer from cyber attacks will be out of business within six months after the attack.
We know that you don’t want your company to meet this kind of a fate.
Are you ready to learn how to prevent cyber attacks, and protect not only your data, but your company’s reputation, in the process?
If so, then you need to read on. In this post, you’ll learn how to create a solid cybersecurity strategy for your business.
1. Identify Your Weak Points
The first thing that you need to do if you want to be able to master adequate cyber attack prevention?
You and your team — and likely an IT and cyber security professional — need to know your weak points.
This means taking stock of not only how much data you have, but the types of data you store and where you actually store it. For example, do you have a hosting platform, a managed server or a shared server, and where is that server located?
What about company phones, laptops, and Google documents? Is it possible for team members to take your data out of the office — where it will often be more vulnerable?
How much of your data is password-protected, and what is your current password policy? How are you training your employees on your security policies, and what sort of tests do you have in place to check that security rules are being followed?
Are you aware that sometimes, the biggest threat to your cybersecurity and data is actually your own employees?
It’s likely that by now, you’ve understood just how vulnerable you truly are to a cyber attack, and how easy it is for hackers to poke holes in your current strategy.
Now, it’s time to take action.
2. Encrypt Your Data
One of the most basic steps that you need to take when learning how to prevent cyber attacks from devastating your company or violating the privacy of your clients?
You need to encrypt your data.
Don’t worry — the process is actually much more straightforward than you might initially think. Essentially, encrypting your data means that, even if a hacker does somehow manage to get into your system and view your data, it will look like a string of random letters, numbers, and characters.
There’s no way that they’ll be able to read it or to decipher it.
A final word of caution on encryption. Make sure that you also program your computers to automatically log a user out after about ten to fifteen minutes of inactivity.
This is because often, encryption only starts working when someone isn’t logged in. So, even if a member of your team steps away for only a few moments?
Your data will be vulnerable.
When in doubt, log out.
3. Run Frequent Data Backups
We know that many people associate the importance of backing up data with the “black screen of death.”
If you suddenly lose power, if your computer system fails or shuts down suddenly, or simply stops working, you want to know that you won’t have lost all of your hard work.
But it’s also essential to back up your data as often as you can to prepare for a potential cyber attack.
Unfortunately, many hackers will actually hold your data and websites “hostage” until you pay them the fee they want to get it back.
But if you have all of your data backed up?
They have nothing to negotiate with. You can also completely wipe your website and data storage, only to install a backup copy a few moments later.
But backing up your data once a week isn’t nearly enough.
Instead, look for IT security solutions that allow you to back up your data about once every hour, or even once every few minutes.
4. Never Use Public Wi-Fi Networks
Earlier in this post, we brought up the fact that your own employees can sometimes be the biggest threat to your company’s cybersecurity strategy.
While in some cases, your employees are intentionally stealing your data?
In most cases, the fact that they’re exposing your data to hackers is entirely accidental. One of the biggest culprits that even you might be guilty of doing? Accessing your work files remotely, from a public, unsecured Wi-Fi network.
Sure, we all appreciate the convenience of free Wi-Fi.
But it’s also incredibly easy for a hacker to get onto that same network and, with a few simple strokes of the key, steal your passwords, data, and documents.
Make sure that you instruct all of your employees to avoid using a public Wi-Fi network when they’re working out of the office. Additionally, frequently switch up your office’s network password to keep hackers guessing.
5. Install Anti-Malware and Anti-Virus Protection
Preventing a cyber attack is next to impossible without one of the most basic cybersecurity tools: antimalware and antivirus software.
This will help you to avoid a wide range of attacks, and even to identify potential threats earlier than ever.
The right software will work to guard you against spyware, Trojans, standard viruses, ransomware, and much more. It will also help you to avoid spoofing and phishing emails (more on that later on in this post.)
Because installing and updating this kind of software can sometimes be a bit of a challenge, we strongly recommend that you get in touch with an IT and security professional to help you.
Cyber security is simply too important to risk it by going the DIY route.
6. Run Frequent Updates
We get it — no one likes having to lose a few minutes of their workday or face having to reboot their computers.
However, software updates don’t just exist to make your life easier and your computer more efficient.
Many people have little to no idea that these updates also install new security features, update your current security and anti-virus software and tools, and help to guard you against new forms of cyber attacks.
Now, hopefully, you have a better understanding of why running those updates is so essential for your business.
7. Avoid Opening Personal Email at Work
One of the biggest cyber threats that most companies don’t pay any attention to until it’s too late?
Your personal email.
Remember that “spoofing,” or a hacker imitating a reputable email address in your contact list or that of a larger corporation, is incredibly common.
Often, you or your team members will think nothing of opening up a personal email at your desk — especially if it’s from someone you know.
Still, a hacker could easily embed links to dangerous websites in the content of their emails. And once you click on those links? Your data is entirely vulnerable, and often, a virus gets installed on your computer.
That virus can quickly replicate itself, and then spread throughout your entire network.
To see if a link is a potential threat or not, instead of clicking on it, simply hover over it with your mouse. If it takes you to a different site than you thought or an unfamiliar address, make sure that you don’t click on it.
Of course, the best way to avoid all of this is by avoiding opening your personal email accounts while at the office.
Looking for Professional Help in Guarding against a Cyber Attack?
We hope that this post has taught you a few of the most important steps that you need to take in order to prevent your company from falling victim to a cyber attack.
Remember to install and update security software, continually train your employees on your security policy, and to avoid public Wi-Fi networks.
If you’ve recently been the victim of cyber attacks, or if you just need professional help in getting the level of protection that you need? We can help you.
Spend some time on our website to learn more about the many different cyber security and IT services that we have to offer.
When you’re ready to make your network a much safer space, get in touch with us to get started.
18 Life Changing Apps That You Absolutely Need to Know About
You’re already on your phone throughout the day, so why not check out these life changing apps? They’re sure to make your screen-time worthwhile!
Our smartphones are capable of making our lives so much easier. Our smartphones are capable of so much. They are a million times more powerful than the computers used in the first space mission!
There are over 22 million apps in the Apple App Store alone, so the demand for great apps isn’t going away any time soon. Many of us spend a lot of time on social media apps and mobile games, there’s a lot of very useful apps out there too.
There are a lot of life changing apps that you may never have heard of before. Read on for 18 of the best.
18 Life Changing Apps You Should Download Today
Apps can help you get your life together and make things a lot easier. If you’re trying to get into shape, there’s an app for that. If you need to book last-minute flights, there’s an app for that too.
We’ve all had moments where we don’t want to go to the store, or we’re in a time crunch and can’t make it there.
Postmates is an app which solves this problem for you. It’s like Uber Eats except it’s not only food you can order. You can order anything you want from any store and your postmate will pick it up for you and bring it right to your door!
You’ll spend more time doing important things and less time worrying about groceries.
We are living such non-stop busy lives now that it can be easy to get stressed and anxious on a daily basis.
Headspace is an app which lets you slow down for 10 minutes each day and meditate. The beauty of it is that you can do it anywhere–on the bus, at your desk, it doesn’t matter where you are.
The app is super effective in reducing stress and anxiety. It also helps improve your creativity and focus through casual daily meditation.
Booking flights can be a nightmare and can cost you a hefty amount if you book too late.
Hopper is an app which makes it so much easier. It shows the best times to book your flights, shows you the lowest prices from a huge range of popular airlines. Not to mention the interface looks great too!
Keeping your eye on a trip in the future and want to get the best price for it? You can set alerts so the app will notify you of when the prices have dropped.
Ever wished you’d taken that photography course or learned how to code? Do you feel like you don’t have enough time in your busy schedule to fit in a class?
Skillshare is an app which lets you take pretty much any course you want at your own convenience. Everything from video editing to t-shirt design is available to learn here.
There are classes, lectures and informative courses which help you develop new skills. It costs a monthly fee but it’s cheaper than many local classes and gives you all the skills you need.
Recently moved somewhere new or been a lifelong resident? No matter what, it can be frustrating to get around the city sometimes.
Citymapper is an app which helps you get around the city with as little stress as possible. It’s super easy to use, all you need to do is type in the destination and click the ‘get me there’ button. It’ll tell you the easiest and fastest ways to get to your destination.
Sometimes Google Maps isn’t the most reliable, and this app remains accurate each time.
Sometimes you need to get to the airport in a pinch or you don’t have the time to figure out public transport. That’s where Uber comes in.
We’ve all heard of Uber by now, but in case you haven’t, it’s an app which calls a cab for you. You can see your driver on the map and know exactly when they’ll arrive.
All payments process through the app via Paypal and it’s super easy to use. It’s a great side-job and its the ultimate convenience app making it one of the most useful apps in recent memory.
Money is a funny thing. Sometimes we don’t know where it all goes by the end of the month. Let’s face it, we could all be a little more money savvy
Yolt is a great app which helps you get your finances together. It’s a secure app which helps calculate your spendings from your debit and credit cards. It will then show you which areas you could save money.
It also has a super useful “payday countdown” feature. This takes all your average monthly spending habits into account. It then shows the realistic amount you’ll have before payday so you can be more budget conscious each month.
8. Habit Tracker
The great thing about September is that it often feels like a month for a clean start. Any bad habits you’ve slipped back into after New Years have been bugging you for a while and you want to get out of them.
Habit tracker helps you set realistic and achievable goals to break bad habits. Want to drink more water? Want to go running more? Set it on Habit Tracker and it’ll remind you to do it!
It also tracks your progress. This means you can have a visual of how well you’ve done at breaking bad habits and forming good ones.
9. Pocket Casts
Podcasts are an amazing way to not only kill time but learn new things. Everything from tech to comedy to spirituality has it’s place in the podcast world. There’s something for everyone.
There are a lot of different podcast apps available. Your smartphone may even have a podcast app pre-installed!
But Pocket Casts is one of the best podcast apps out there. It has a very extensive library of some of the most popular podcasts out there as well as more niche ones.
It also has a great, user-friendly interface which is a delight to use.
Getting fit and healthy isn’t something you can become overnight. It takes hard work and motivation to keep on track and not get discouraged.
Myfitnesspal is one of the best apps for getting in shape and eating healthy over a long period.
It helps you stay on track to reaching your daily calorie goals. It can also keep you motivated with a fitness routine.
Add a nutrition goal and it makes it easy to log your food intake and journal your progression.
We’ve all been there, slaving over a dish in the kitchen trying to make a delicious meal. Then you realize you’ve forgotten a key ingredient!
Worry no more, Substitutions helps solve this problem. It helps you find a substitution to that ingredient which you can add to the recipe and make the dish as tasty!
It’s perfect for vegetarians or vegans as it shows meat, dairy, and gluten-free options too!
12. Watch Over Me
It’s sad to say it but we do live in a scary world. Sometimes, it doesn’t feel completely safe to go out, especially when we are out alone.
Watch Over Me is a personal safety app which helps keep you safe and gives you peace of mind. To use it, you set an alarm for how long you’ll be out for.
Say you’re going for an hour long run. Tell the app you’ll be out for an hour, and when you’ve gotten back home, click the “I’m Safe” button to let it know you’re okay.
If the alarm runs out and you haven’t clicked the button, it’ll notify your emergency contact. It will tell them you haven’t checked in and provide them with your GPS location.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry. We hope you’ll never need to use this feature of the app, but it can make going out alone a lot less scary.
We’re all a little bit guilty of spending too much time on our cell phones. Whether it’s scrolling through social media or stuck in a group chat loop, it’s not good for us.
Moment is an app which helps you limit your phone usage and get back into the real world. You can use it to set a daily limit to the time you spend on apps and it will tell you when you’ve gone over the limit.
If you have kids who spend too much time on their phones, you can sync the apps with their phones too. It can help them to put their phones down every once in a while!
Freelance life sounds like the dream. No boss to answer to, picking your own work hours, working from home. It’s a dream for many people to become their own boss and work at something they love doing.
But it can be very hard to break into the freelancing world without any experience or portfolio. Upwork is an app which helps you get paid work and start building a portfolio. You can use it for a huge range of different niches.
Want to be a copywriter? It can help you build clients. Want to get into website design? It can help you get your portfolio started.
It’s a great app for side-gigs and who knows, it could help you turn it into your main gig!
We’ve all told ourselves we’ll start reading some of the books in the ‘to-read’ pile. But then we go and switch onto another episode on Netflix.
If you’re trying to get back into reading books, it can be tricky to find the right ones or track your progress.
Goodreads is a great app for this. It helps you find books from any genre and recommends some of the most popular to you. You can track your reading progress and set yourself a yearly reading goal to meet!
It has online book clubs you can join too. You can join an online community and discuss books with people from all round the world!
Trying to think of a birthday present that is more meaningful and memorable than a physical gift? Groupon will show you a range of experiences, vacations and more for the perfect gift.
Choose from a selection of experiences from beer tasting to 5 course meals and skydiving.
They’re all well priced and make for a great gift to yourself or others!
Mobile security is every bit as important as computer security. You wouldn’t want your computer to be struck down by a virus, it’s the same for your phone.
Avast is a great app which provides the basics for cleaning and protecting your phone. It will keep it free from viruses or malicious software. Security vulnerabilities can lead to a broken device, so it’s best to keep it clean and free of harmful stuff.
18. Google Photos
We’ve all had that familiar moment of frustration. You’ve taken a photo and your phone brings up that annoying message: ‘storage full’.
You don’t have to spend time deleting apps or photos from your device. The Google photos app gives you unlimited photo storage (for photos up to 16mb). It can also back up your camera roll each time you take a photo.
Use These Life Changing Apps to Get Your Life on Track
It may seem silly to say that these are life changing apps, but they really do make a difference. If you’re looking to get into shape or improve yourself, they can get you there.
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