digital cloud illustration

Do I Really Need to Adopt the Cloud?

You’ve undoubtedly heard about the Cloud by now. It’s being adopted daily by businesses all over the industry. In fact, cloud adoption is at 95% now, and it’s predicted that by 2019, 83% of all data center traffic will be from the cloud, and by 2026, 73% of organization’s IT will be running in the Cloud.

So, why are businesses everywhere making the switch? What are the benefits they’re receiving from storing their data in these external data centers? There are many, such as:

Flexibility

One of the largest benefits that come with storing your data in the Cloud is the extreme flexibility it provides. What do we mean by that? Well, when you switch your data to cloud computing, it becomes stored in these data centers off site, and the way that you access your data is through the internet. You don’t need any onsite equipment anymore, just a device and an internet connection. This means that you can access your information from anywhere, anytime, as long as you have a device and a stable internet connection.

This flexibility will allow you and employees to work from home or abroad, and having all your data centrally located will reduce confusion and improve communication. Did we mention that cloud computing is also scalable? No matter how big you grow, we’ll grow with you.

Convenience and Cost Savings

When you operate off of the Cloud, you don’t have to worry about maintaining your applications anymore. Your IT service provider, such as us here at Diverge IT, will constantly be upgrading and monitoring your applications without you having to ask us.

Cloud computing is also budget friendly. Services are charged at a flat, monthly rate, and this has helped a lot of businesses save money. Here are some stats to prove it:

  • Most organizations have been able to increase revenues by 4–10% in the cloud.
  • 84% of CIOs cut application costs by moving to the cloud.
  • Organizations typically save around 21% annually by adopting cloud computing. 

Security

Remember those data centers we mentioned earlier? They’re highly, highly secure. In fact, 64% of businesses say that the Cloud is actually more secure than older legacy systems. In addition to these highly guarded data centers, your MSP, like us here at Diverge IT, will implement data encryption to even further protect your data.

Another attractive security aspect of cloud computing is its BDR planning. BDR, or backup and disaster recovery, is a plan that every business should have just in case the worst were to happen, such as a natural disaster wiping out your office space, or a theft. If any of those things were to happen, you don’t have to completely despair because your data will be safe in the Cloud. The Cloud offers frequent, automatic backup, 24/7 monitoring, instant file access, and instant data recovery in the event of a data loss. Don’t worry, you’re safe in the Cloud.

Diverge IT Can Take You to the Cloud

With all these benefits that the Cloud brings, it’s no wonder that 95% of cloud users intend to renew their contracts with their providers. At Diverge IT, we’re ready to help you make the switch over. Contact us today to get started!

Hardware as a Service

Tax Benefits of Hardware as a Service

Taxation of business expenses can be a murky and confusing topic for even experienced managers. Tax deductions are intricate, specific to the situation, and sometimes even metered out over a long period of time. When discussing the tax benefits of hardware as a service, the first and most important thing to know is the difference between capital expenditures and operational expenditures, which are two distinctly different types of expense that are taxed (and counted as deductions) in different ways.

Capital expenditures are purchases that carry primarily long-term benefits for a business. Examples of capital expenditures include new buildings, renovations, new and improved computers or production equipment like cameras and video software, and more. They may have some immediate benefits, but the vision behind the purchase is long term.

On the other hand, operational expenditures are the costs associated with the daily operations of a business. These include wages, maintenance, utilities, and pretty much every other normal expenditure that comes into play on a routine basis. Because operational expenditures are limited to immediate benefits, the entire associated tax deduction counts during the current fiscal year. This differs from capital expenditures because the tax deductions for capital expenditures must be drawn out over several years to reflect the long-term nature of the benefits such expenditures provide.

When working with information technology, going it alone racks up a lot of capital expenses. Setting up servers, maintaining storage, and managing hardware that you own (and all the hassles that go along with it like software updates, damage protection and more) will all count as capital expenditures, and can only be deducted from tax obligations incrementally.

Hardware as a service, however, is considered an operational expenditure. Because your business is paying to use hardware owned by a third party and not purchasing the hardware itself, hardware as a service can never be considered a capital expenditure since the benefits would end in the short term if a payment was missed. Unless your company’s needs are so demanding or complex that a third party IT service provider isn’t practical, your business can deduct more from its taxes by taking advantage of hardware as a service.

Besides the surprisingly generous tax benefits, hardware as a service has a number of other notable benefits for your business. First, working with an IT service provider guarantees that the people managing your hardware are professionals familiar with industry standards and all the latest trends. Secondly, it guarantees that specialists are managing your hardware needs around the clock without being on your payroll – in other words, outsourcing IT gives you access to all the perks of in-house IT personnel at a fraction of the cost. Finally, it removes the need to constantly maintenance and update your hardware, since whatever provider you’re working with is already on it.

Hardware as a service is a cost-effective way to help your business punch above its weight and get the most out of the tax code. We’d love to sit down with you and discuss your needs, then determine which of our offerings can give your business the edge you’ve been looking for. Give us a call today to find out more.

Cut Down on Confusion with Office 365 for Business

Cut Down on Confusion with Office 365 for Business

For many organizations, Office 365 for Business is a game-changer. It’s not just a cloud-based version of Microsoft Office. It’s more of a software and services collection designed to satisfy the needs of many companies. Aside from the fantastic features and tools incorporated, using Office 365 for Business has a huge benefit for businesses – it cuts down on users’ confusion.

Never Lose Data Again

Systems crash every day and natural disasters seem more common than ever. This should not mean that your business needs to close. On the contrary, with Office 365 for Business, your data and all important documents and emails will remain available, regardless of the situation.

The software package offers built-in security. You’ll always know where your data is and who has access. Instead of stressing about the safety of your data, you can make your life easier by storing it in the cloud via 1TB of OneDrive online storage.

Predictable Low-Cost

Saving on high-quality IT solutions is a dream come true for every organization. With Office 365 for Business, things are simple. You can pay per user each month. Controlling the number of users is easy.

This scalable solution does not require any contracts or detailed future expansion plans. You have liberty in planning your budget and using the software for increased productivity and business growth, on your terms.

Reliable Organization and Accessibility

With Office 365 for Business, emails, calendar, and contacts are synchronized. If you update any contact on your mobile phone, it will automatically update across your devices.

Additionally, you can access all data from any device. You can save one document on your PC and edit it later on your smartphone. This option provides better time-management and tasks organization. It also means that you don’t have to be physically present at the office. You can work from the beach if you wish, but watch out for sand in your devices. You won’t require any special configuration; only an internet connection.

Improved Email Storage

It’s human nature to store emails for a later reference. We do make an effort to clean them up, but most of us delete few messages before succumbing to the growing email mountain.

With Office 365 for Business and 50GB of email storage, you are spared the often difficult and sometimes cruel decisions of which email to keep and which to discard.

Save all your emails. If your email archive is untidy, don’t worry. Remember that it’s also searchable and use your newly-acquired spare time to focus on more important things.

No More Licenses

Imagine wasting a couple of days each month in the effort of resolving and managing everyone’s subscriptions and licenses. Now imagine that your employees are using different software versions.

It’s a mess, isn’t it?

Office 365 for Business is all-license inclusive. Every employee gets the same version or upgrades at the same time. When you don’t have to worry about unnecessarily complex IT issues, you can use your time for more creative things.

Office 365 for Business means working smart, not hard. The preferred work environment often implies less confusing workplaces. Taking the frustration out of IT may accomplish just that. Let the team at Diverge IT show you how Office 365 for Business can open the way for much better company performance.

office 365

All Office 365 for Business Has to Offer

In a fast-paced business environment, experimenting with office technology can seem like a bit of a luxury. This is true even when you a that you could be handling your daily tasks more efficiently. It takes time to install new systems and ensure that everyone knows how to use them; time that often comes at a premium.

Microsoft has the solution in Office 365 For Business. Among other things, it will spare you the headache of non-compatible software.

Coordination with Familiar Tools

Most people in business familiar with – or at least aware of – Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Excel, and Publisher. Office 365 for Business works with these well-established and widely understood tools. They provide the same features combined with more capabilities.

For example, you can see if someone is editing your documents, you can broadcast PowerPoint presentations, and you can synchronize files with your desktop.

Easy Access

Whether you’re using PCs, Macs, Android phones, or iPhones, Office 365 for Business provides web-enabled access to emails and contacts. You’ll also be able to access your documents and calendars on the move. This flexibility means the freedom to work from any location at any time. The option to access your documents and emails from your mobile phone means that you don’t need to be at the office to work, or to deal with an emergency.

With Office 365 for Business, you can work flexibly and fast.

In-and-Out of the Organization Communication

By creating a password-protected portal in 365 Office for Business, you can share large files with people internal and external to your company. This portal can serve as a single location for all relevant documents, knowing that they will be updated to latest versions, regardless of how many people have edited them. Additionally, you can instant message colleagues and customers. This is useful when you want to invite them to online meetings or to review documents.

Simple to Use

Needless to say, Office 365 for Business is easy to learn and simple to use. You don’t need complex systems installation or software knowledge. In minutes, you can create a trial account and start enjoying the benefits of the cloud.

You can perform administrative tasks through a web-based portal, accessible only to people to whom you grant access. Instead of wasting time on IT details, you can focus on the bigger picture of your business and its place in the market.

Better Online Solutions

Some of the best Office 365 for Business features include a 50GB mailbox accommodating attachments of up to 25MB. At a very affordable price, you can enjoy the liberty of sending larger documents and files without the associated headaches.

Enhanced Security

In every business, data security is essential. Office 365 for Business offers the same security as all Microsoft data centers. It provides the same systems to protect documents, emails, and networks.

These systems offer 24/7/365 support in removing spam or malware, guarding your critical data through geo-redundant, enterprise-grade reliability and disaster recovery, with a strict privacy policy. It’s designed to guarantee 99.9% uptime; a financially-backed service level agreement (SLA).

More Business Flexibility and a Professional Look

Office 365 for Business offers various price options, providing more flexibility for your business. You can provide individual users with selected services, which is more cost-effective than other systems.

Creating a custom website on a customized domain means more brand recognition and authority for your business. Through Office 365 for Business, you can use various design tools to create a professional website in no time.

Additionally, when you use a professional service like Office 365, you signal your professionalism to your customers, differentiating yourself from organizations that settle for inferior, free services.

With Office 365 for Business provided by Diverge IT, you can push your small business into the big leagues. We’ll provide you the tools you need to take the pain out of everyday tasks and speed you toward success. Send us a message or give us a call by clicking here!

Smiling businessman

Cut Down on Confusion with Office 365 for Business

Business can get confusing. All those documents and deadlines and client requests constantly flying around are immensely distracting. This can cause you to skip over vital steps, like saving a document, or clicking “share.” These may seem like little errors at the time, but forgetting to share an urgent document or save the final changes of a contract can snowball into a big, destructive mess.

Office 365 for business is here to help you cut down on all that confusion. With features such as email, online meetings, file sharing, video management, etc. all in one, centralized place, in an easy to use format, you’ll wish you made the switch sooner.

What is Office 365 for Business?

Office 365 is an improved version of Microsoft’s Office suite. How? Well, first of all, it is always updated and there are no large licensing costs. 365 has also moved to the cloud. Don’t worry, all your favorite softwares from before are still there. The only difference now is that they are seamlessly connected to this enterprise software living out in the cloud.

Access anytime, anywhere

Because everything is stored in a Microsoft data center, everything is centrally located in one place. This is a great advantage. This aids in all kinds of situations, such as needing to switch devices, or working from a different location. As long as you have an internet connection and a device, you will have access to your files.

File sharing/syncing

Office 365 for business also offers collaboration solutions that make life much simpler in this communication driven world. For example, the premium plan includes Skype-supported video conferencing and larger file sharing capabilities.

Everything being centrally located in one place is also an important feature. Because of this, you always have “a single source of truth.” What this means is that if you make a change to a document on your phone at home, then your boss views that document at work, he will be seeing the most up-to-date document. No more confusion about what you saved where. And, did we mention that it saves automatically? No need to worry about constantly clicking “ctrl+s” anymore!

Security

Office 365 for Business also makes it a priority to ensure that your company’s information is as secure as possible. For example, you can control who you share your files with. SharePoint (in Office 365) also allows you to check out a document and edit it without anybody else editing at the same time. They give you, the administrator, complete control over your environment. And just to make sure you’re always safe, they have automatic reminders of security policies when sharing certain files. No need to worry here.

It’s simple

Even with all these features, Office 365 is still simple to use, a quality that Microsoft is proud of. Increasing simplicity yields greater productivity. When technology is confusing and in the way, you can’t focus on your job. Think of how convenient features like automatic saving or keyboard shortcuts are. We used to write on typewriters back in the day. Look at where technology is now!

Diverge IT understands how valuable and convenient Office 365 for Business is. Having this tool will take care of all that side, distracting confusion, allowing you to focus on what’s most important. Contact us today for an easy transition.

office 365 for business

All Office 365 for Business Has to Offer

If you’ve ever had to deal with unwieldy or outdated technology at work, you know how detrimental poorly managed software can be to office productivity. The fluid, clean workspaces seen in commercials and TV shows seem to be more myth than reality, and your hard drive is constantly cluttered with junk files that you accidentally downloaded as part of an email attachment six months ago. You don’t even want to get started on your desktop, which serves as a home for dozens of digital squatters – files that have been hanging around so long that you forgot how they ended up there in the first place.

The good news is that there are more and more solutions that can help your office work more efficiently and be more organized. Among the best of these tools is Office 365 for Business.

Microsoft’s spectacular Office suite has been around for years, becoming a huge boon to computer owners.But its one pitfall is that users who aren’t meticulous organizers may find a lot of clutter on their desktop and throughout their hard drive. Office 365 for Business seeks to solve that problem and make the rest of your workspace more intuitive and efficient.

Office 365 for Business: An Intuitive Interface Across All Devices

Office 365 for Business is designed with cross-platform compatibility in mind so that you can access your files from a number of devices in real time, all using the same intuitive interface. Office 365 is at its best when flowing through Outlook 365, the overhauled version of Microsoft’s standard email manager. Outlook 365 is compatible with PowerPoint, OneNote, Word, Excel, and other programs to the point that users can view and edit files in-browser and return them to their original sender without ever having to actually download the file and clutter up their computer. This isn’t just great for computer performance – it also saves users a ton of scrolling time and button mashing. All of this is workable because Office 365 for Business offers users 50 gigabytes of email storage on top of a full terabyte of general file storage.

Secure and Collaborative

Office 365 for Business also offers solutions that can make life a lot easier for organizations adapting to the increasing need for communications technology in the workplace. Office 365’s Premium plan, for example, includes Skype-supported video conferencing and expanded file sharing capabilities. Office 365 for Business also helps ensure that your business’s information is as secure as possible, going as far as to automatically remind users of security policies when sharing certain files.

An Easy Transition with Diverge IT

For a business that deals with processing a large amount of information, Office 365 for Business is a perfect solution to the technological inconveniences that plague so many offices. At Diverge IT, it’s our mission to help you make your home or office as technologically capable as possible, and equipping your organization with Office 365 for Business is just one of the ways we can help out. Get in touch with us today to learn about any number of IT solutions.

working remotely

Working Remotely – Computing on the Go!

While great for creativity and collaboration, working in an open office can be a minefield of distractions that employees have to gingerly pick their way over as they go about their day and complete tasks. Interruptions come in all shapes and sizes, and can poke countless holes in your to-do list until it’s in tatters.

How Working Remotely Helps

Working remotely can help your employees zero in and focus better on their work, completing it faster and doing it better than they might while in the office. Whether their comfort zone is a coffee shop humming with chatter or on their back patio with birds for company, remote work allows your employees to work where they’re most productive and comfortable.

Battling through Interruptions

Most commuters start their work day an hour or more before they’re even in the office. That time is spent battling through rush hour traffic, leaving them tense and distracted before they get to their desk.

In most offices, interruptions happen once every 11 minutes. Once interrupted, it can take someone upwards of 20 minutes to completely refocus on whatever they were doing.

The shrill ring of a phone can cut through an employee’s focus and completely throw them off track. A coworker droning on the latest episode of The Walking Dead can be a major distraction.

Giving employees the option of working remotely can help improve their focus, which in turn improves the quality of the work they do.

Even More Benefits

Having the freedom of working remotely allows your team to create their ideal workspace, with minimal distractions and interruptions. This also reduces stress levels, which boosts your employee’s overall health and cuts down on the need for sick days.

Video conferencing and call forwarding to their cell allows your employees to stay connected, regardless of geographical location.

By nixing the need for a commute, you’re also helping the environment and cutting down on the carbon footprint your company leaves.

When your employees function at their best, your business functions at its best. If you’re interested in equipping your business with the right solutions for a successful remote workforce, give Diverge IT a call today!

working remotely

Working Remotely: The Business Benefits

Giving employees the option of working remotely has a slew of benefits for your company. The idea of a flexible job has a bit of a negative connotation in certain realms of the business world. But as tides change, working remotely is becoming more and more common for companies of all industries and sizes.

Channelling In

When working from a familiar environment, employee productivity is boosted. Some employees, usually introverted individuals, may find it difficult to focus in an open office setting because they are constantly monitoring their surroundings for potential interactions. On a very primal level, we subconsciously scan those around us to check for danger to ensure they’re not a threat. This is usually amplified with an introverted personality, which makes it more difficult for them to focus completely on a task at hand. Working remotely eliminates these drawbacks and boosts efficiency and productivity because employees can become more engaged in their work and assignments.

Eliminating Distractions

Working remotely allows team members to manage themselves in a relaxed and intimate space with a limited number of interruptions. In an open office, interruptions occur on an average of every 11 minutes – from announcements to conversations to phone calls. When an employee is interrupted, it can take them up to an additional 25 minutes to completely refocus on their work. Working remotely slashes potential distractions, minimizes downtime, and boosts productivity.

Controlling Your Environment

As more and more millennials enter the workforce and into leadership positions, it’s important to stay attuned to this generation’s unique relationship with technology and their needs. Millennials have grown with the advancement of technology, as it has become integrated into almost every facet of our lives. Because of this, this age group often feels overstimulated and crave a quiet and calmer workspace to unplug to work more effectively and efficiently. Remote work allows your employees to create their ideal work environment, so they can increase the quantity and the quality of the work they are producing.

Other Benefits

Remote work also reduces stress among employees, thereby minimizing the need for sick days and other medical costs for your company. By reducing commute time, even if it’s one day a week, working remotely can reduce stress caused by traffic and other environmental factors. Fewer people driving means that fewer resources are being used – so your carbon footprint is also shrinking!

Working remotely has plenty of benefits for your business, but it isn’t for everyone. Talk with your team and decide what approach will help them the most. When the people inside your company are thriving, your business will succeed with them. Reach out to Diverge IT to discuss the best plan of action to build a growing remote workforce with ease.

business communication

Business Communications Help You Work as a Team

Enhanced communication among employees can strengthen a business from the inside out. Better communication bolsters connections to support a more close-knit group of employees, while allowing the company to unlock endless ideas and resources.

Business communication is a necessary means that team members can use to increase their efficiency, generate more ideas, and create a support network among peers. There are several tools that not only help to facilitate business communication, but work to make it as useful and beneficial as possible.

Social Intranet Software

Social intranet software has become more and more popular in workplaces than ever before. The software features typical social components which make it familiar and more friendly for your employees to use. Think of it like a Facebook or Twitter feed for the office, where team members share useful business-related information like they would cat videos or news articles.

Social intranet software also fosters a closer sense of community which can increase the effectiveness of communication in the company.

Private and Group Messaging Tools

Teams and project groups in your firm need tools to help them work together more cohesively. Chat systems and messaging tools are an excellent way to help your employees communicate easier and clearer with each other.

Collaborative spaces like group messages help keep a project team on task and can connect employees separated by vast geographical distances. Message features allow team members to exchange information quickly and be more efficient in the workplace.

Collaborative Online Workspaces

Much like messaging software, online collaborative workspaces increase efficiency and effectiveness of communication in your company. Online workspaces allow employees to monitor their own progress on tasks as well as see the status of other projects and items being completed. This reduces confusion about due dates, client details, and other issues that come from traditional physical spaces.

Video Conferencing Software

Video conferencing is becoming an integral tool for most businesses. Video conferences increase efficiency by allowing you to connect team members all over the world instantly. Video meetings also save your business a lot of money but slashing travel costs usually spent to bring people onsite to conduct meetings. Video software allows you to connect the office with employees working remotely or in other areas of the globe.

Video conferencing improves communication because it allows team members in the meeting to pick up on nonverbal communication that they would have missed in an email or even in a traditional call. Strengthened communication will work to improve relationships and teamwork within your company.

The Payoff of Great Business Communications

Business communication is a crucial tool that can be leveraged through different approaches to create an environment where everyone communicates as effectively as possible. By implementing certain software and best practices, you can increase the efficiency of teamwork while building a support network which allows employee talent to flourish.

If you’re ready to take your business communications to the next level, talk to the friendly consultants at Diverge IT. We’ll analyze your communications needs to determine the best solution for your business.

Business-Communications-VoIP

Improve Customer Service with Business Communications

Customer service is the backbone of any healthy business. Happy customers help your business grow by giving testimonials, references, and constructive feedback. Sustaining happy customers requires mutual trust and a solid relationship – and like any healthy relationship, communication is key. Diverge IT can help you both improve your client relations and save money by providing you with the best business communication solutions and services for your business.

Ditch the Landline

Great customer service means being able to communicate quickly and effectively with your clients, no matter where your business takes you. VoIP solutions allow you to take your business line with you beyond the office. Securely take calls from your smartphone, your tablet, or your laptop. Simply downloading the right app can turn each device into a Softphone connecting directly to your company’s VoIP solution.

What’s more, with a digital voice solution your voice becomes data, which translates to additional functionality. This means your VoIP setup can be hosted on-premise or in the Cloud to integrate seamlessly with your existing IT infrastructure.

Have a VPN setup? Not a problem. Simply host your VoIP setup on-premise within your secure network.

Don’t have an existing infrastructure? Diverge IT can host your voice solution the Cloud. We’ll even manage and maintain it for you.

Save Money

After switching to a VoIP based business communications service, companies will save an average of 50% to 75%. The average hardwired business line costs $500 per unit upfront, not including set up fees. Let’s say you have a 50 person company. As opposed to an upfront fee of $25,000, you could pay as little as $6,250. (Each situation is different, but that’s $18,750 in potential savings!)

Except instead of just one hardwired phone in your office, you could download a VoIP app on your personal phone, tablet, and laptop to communicate with clients with increased clarity from wherever you need to be.

Improve Customer Service

The most important benefit of unified business communications is the ability to better serve your customers. You can even setup your VoIP system to integrate with your CRM platform to track calls or even host conversations for training and reference. You’ll be able to communicate with clients from wherever your business takes you with improved clarity, reliability, and transparency. No more missed calls. No more “You must not have been at your desk,” because with VoIP, the world is your office.

What Benefits Will You See?

Better yet, how much can you be saving? How much will your client retention improve? Connect with us today to learn more about how Diverge IT can specifically help your business.