A Guide to Help Small-to-Medium-Sized Businesses Start The Conversation About Their IT Needs
We understand - having the responsibility for the management of your business technology is a large task. You are likely interested in this blog because you have been tasked with streamlining the technology that runs your business, or you have been struggling with troubleshooting your business technology on a consistent basis.
We'd like to take some of the stress off your hands by providing you with the tools you need to learn more about positioning the need for Managed IT Services within your business, and how to communicate what you have researched to your decision makers from talking points to a presentation template. The best part is, it's all in one place.
Take advantage of this FREE resource, and start educating yourself on how to best sell Managed IT Services to your decision makers.
When reporting a tech issue, the better the communication, the more effective the problem-solving. We want to provide you with what IT professionals look for when addressing a new request so that you can effectively report your future technology issues or questions.
Here's what your engineer will want to know:
WHAT STOPPED WORKING?
This may seem like an obvious question, but it's always important to ensure the engineer knows exactly what isn't working that should be. This helps maintain a strong focus on the request at hand so that the issue can be solved efficiently. An engineer will want to know exactly what went wrong or what isn't working from your perspective. Knowing exactly what stopped working and when the issue started will help an IT team determine the overall end goal when troubleshooting. So, if something stops working, pay attention to the why and the when.
WHAT'S THE OVERALL IMPACT?
Another important detail to relay is whether or not the issue is impacting just your device or multiple users within your organization. Not only does this let your engineer know the impact, but also whether or not it's a user specific issue vs. a larger one. Knowing the overall impact will help streamline the problem-solving process.
Your engineer might ask something along the lines of, "When was the last time this worked correctly?" This will determine whether or not this is a recurring issue, which will help lead to the root cause more quickly. Finding the answer to that question will help determine whether or not the problem was caused by an internal process changing, a user getting a new device, and much more.
DOES THIS PREVENT YOU FROM WORKING TODAY?
Defining whether or not the ticket request is something that prevents a user from working helps to determine the urgency of the issue. Depending on the urgency, your engineer might want to connect into your computer right away so that you can show them the issue. Having a user directly show an engineer what led to the issue/what the issue looks like is one of the most important parts of troubleshooting and effectively reporting a tech issue. If for some reason that is not an option, taking screenshots and writing down error codes is always helpful as well.
Effectively reporting a tech issue to an IT engineer can potentially save hours of time when trying to troubleshoot a request. Pay attention to the issue at hand, have a willingness to answer questions, and help your IT team determine the urgency of the situation. Most of the time, clear communication will lead to a simple and straightforward ticket request process.
Having an understanding of the basic functions of your network will be helpful when reporting a future tech issue. Click below to download the Five Nines Power Hour: Building An Optimal Network, a webinar that will teach you all about network basics, network design (the good and the bad), as well as troubleshooting and monitoring.
Building an efficient IT team can make the difference between your workplace technology becoming an asset or a liability. In this webinar, we will discuss how to make your IT an asset by going over how to utilize the right tools, processes, and people to keep your technology running smoothly.
WHAT YOU'LL LEARN ABOUT:
- IT Responsibilities
- Technology Standards
- IT Service Requests
- IT Security
- Budgeting for IT
- IT Training and Knowledge
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In today's world, technology is on-the-go and there are no trends to show that this on-the-go tech culture will change anytime soon. According to a poll conducted by Gallup, in 2017 43% of Americans said they spent at least some time working remotely. Working remotely is becoming more and more popular, whether it is a part of company culture or for special circumstances.
We want you to know that it's okay to go remote, and that working on your devices outside of the office can still be safe and reliable. Whether it's a common trend in your organization or not, the ability for employees to access their work remotely is always good for unexpected, on-the-go work.
Here are some things to think about when configuring your IT environment for remote work.
A VPN, or a virtual private network, is a way to connect to a remote site securely, while using a standard Internet connection. The most common remote access VPN used today is secured via Secure Socket Layer or SSL. This is essentially security technology that protects your data as you pass between the web server and different browsers. Your VPN can be configured to tailor your organization's needs and make working remotely efficient and protected without your employees having to take any extra steps.
There are a few steps every business should take to ensure users can connect remotely. First, you must ensure a remote access VPN is licensed and configured properly on your firewall. Your IT team should also ensure an SSL certificate is purchased so it can be used for the remote access VPN for added protection. Doing this will limit many common cyber threats.
On the remote employees' side, they must have a reliable Internet connection as well as a home network. It is typically fine to work in places such as coffee shops, but users must be aware that they could experience a poor connection from time to time as those networks are used by many outside devices.
Remote solutions are going to look different for every organization, as it varies based on the type of IT environment a company is utilizing. For example, other business class solutions that would allow for employees to remotely access their work are Citrix NetScaler and Microsoft Remote Desktop Gateway. If you are currently using Citrix for published applications or desktops, the Citrix NetScaler option might work best for you as it would be a straight-forward process that would allow for SSL encrypted remote access to the Citrix resources. If your company uses predominantly Remote Desktop Services, the implementation of a remote desktop gateway will allow for remote access by the user.
If your employees are encouraged to work from home if needed, make sure your organization is protected while doing so. If remote work isn't as common for your employees, it's still an important aspect to focus on so that if the opportunity arises the user is protected. Life happens, and sometimes there are no other options than for a user to work remotely. Make sure your organization is prepared.
If you're curious about more ways to collaborate with your team from anywhere through technological tools, click below for a free Five Nines webinar that dives into why Office 365 is more than just an email tool.