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Keep up to date with the latest in technology trends and business strategy. Learn fresh, practical tips to better your business through leveraging technology.

Written By Priscila Bernardes Apr 26, 2016 9:30:00 AM

IT security

Email attacks: Be aware of these scams and be safe

 A couple of months ago, we published a post about malware and the danger of being targeted through the internet. The reality is that despite the easy availability of plenty of information, the emails of more and more businesses are being compromised. Email-borne risks include viruses, scams, phishing attacks and more. Knowing how to protect yourself against these attacks is challenging because hackers are dynamic and smart about how and who they target, making it difficult to know what is and isn’t legitimate.


In this post we help you to help yourself by pointing out a few common email threats and how you can identify them (Oh! And provide examples of the latest spam reported in New Zealand.)

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Apr 19, 2016 9:30:00 AM

cloud computing Digital Transformation Amazon Web Services

AWS cost: Don't get lost in the cloud

Typically, the first thing most assume when dealing with cloud services is that there will be a cost saving. The next is that the costs will be variable, and they are. What ‘they’ don’t tell you is that by using Amazon Web Services (AWS), it is possible to get lost in the cloud and end up with a bill much bigger than anticipated. Here’s how that can happen.

Let's start by considering a trully uknown - AWS Cost Accounting

Pricing for AWS is completely transparent.  The price for each service is clearly labelled online and publicly available.  Amazon’s list prices are the same for all customers, and the only discounts come in the form of volume discounts based on usage, or Reserved Instances (RIs).

So if that's so transparent, how is it an unknown? The devil is in the details

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Mar 30, 2016 9:30:00 AM

IT security

Security and the SMB's: How can you protect yourself?

Many small to medium businesses are embracing the move to the cloud, quickly finding themselves with hybrid environments which combine on-premise technology with online services. But what are the implications for security? How can you be sure that company information is secure and that hackers aren’t getting into your company?

Firstly, accept that information security is a very real and ongoing risk. It is a simple fact of life; 1.1 billion personal and sensitive records were compromised in 2014 across 3,014 incidents. There’s no shortage of statistics and data available to show the extent of the problem.

It sounds awfully frightening and, with attackers using automated approaches to constantly probe for weaknesses, the possibility of experiencing a breach is very real.

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Mar 22, 2016 9:30:00 AM

cloud computing Digital Transformation

Public, Private and Hybrid cloud - which will work for you?

You will by now have heard the term 'Cloud Computing' a lot.  You probably have found that the term 'cloud computing' used for completely different and apparently contradictory circumstances. Google, Uber and Amazon are all 'cloud' but very different services. Didn't Amazon once sell books?  AWS, Evernote, Uber, AirBnB, Office 365, Google - all cloud, all quite distinct.

But  then  even  though  IT  created  this  notion  of  cloud  computing  they  took  it  further  and  created  even  more  clouds.  No, these aren’t cumulus, stratus or cirrus. They are instead the public cloud, the hybrid cloud and the private cloud.

Before getting into these definitions, take a look at this previous blog for more detail on "What is cloud" 

Let's start: Public Cloud

A    public    cloud is based on a standard cloud computing    model,   where   a  service provider (think Microsoft or Amazon)    makes    resources,    such  as applications  and   storage, available  to  the   general  public over the Internet. Public cloud services   may   be   free   or    offered  on a pay-per-usage model.  

What about private cloud?

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Mar 15, 2016 9:30:00 AM

productivity Office 365 cloud computing

5 Points to consider before moving to Office 365

A few weeks ago, we blogged about why your business should consider moving to Office 365 and the benefits of Microsoft’s cloud productivity applications. As always, it’s worth giving thought to the reasons for moving to Office 365 (and the reasons for making any change to business services should be good ones!)

With Office 365, those reasons are very good – but there are conditions which must be fulfilled before you do it. Check out these 5 points which will determine if your business is ready to take the leap:


1. Internet Connectivity

New Zealand is in the midst of the National UFB (Ultra Fast Broadband) Network roll-out. If you’re in an area which is connected – great. However, not every business has inexpensive access to business grade internet.

As a cloud service, Office 365 depends on good internet connectivity is essential. Don’t fall into the trap of switching only to discover your connection isn’t up to it. That could deliver a poor experience, leaving your staff wondering why the switch was made in the first place.

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Mar 8, 2016 9:30:00 AM

efficiency productivity

9 Excel shortcuts everyone should know

Computer technology moves fast. For this reason, it's hard to believe that a computer program that's been around for so long is still one of the most popular programs in the world: Excel.

Nowadays, most office workers are expected to know how to work with basic Excel to the extent that many recruiters suggest you shouldn't even bother listing it on your CV. Be that as it may, if you still find yourself manually replicating columns and scribbling down maths on pieces of paper, you’ll find these 9 tips to use Excel invaluable (and you can download over 200 of them at the end of this post!).

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Mar 1, 2016 9:30:00 AM

productivity Software Development

Automate recruitment! (We can do that for you)

Even as automation continues to change the nature of work today, it is human talent which makes the difference and drives high-growth organisations to reach the next milestone. However, attracting and retaining the right people is costly and time consuming.

How about automating this process?

That’s exactly what we asked ourselves at Lancom, years ago. Realising that the process from advertising a vacancy to starting the successful candidate just took too much time (and effort), we went about creating a better way. The result is HireRoom and it makes finding, interviewing and employing the best person far easier, much faster for all concerned, and considerably reduces the cost.
Best of all, HireRoom doesn’t remove the human out of the human resources.
It’s a recruitment tool that lets you test the skills of your next hire early on in the recruitment process, cutting down on time and quickly narrowing the candidate field down to those capable of doing the job. 

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Feb 23, 2016 9:30:00 AM

efficiency productivity

5 Webtools to take marketing to the next level

Noticed the pace and efficiency of the digital economy? Impossible not to – but are your marketing efforts keeping up? For most companies, the answer is as simple as it is short. No.

That’s because for many organisations, marketing continues to function as it always has, despite the obvious impact of digital business taking place all around. That necessitates doing things a little differently. If you’re wondering where to start, check out these five web tools which will help catapult your marketing into the digital era. Here’s more good news – they don’t need investments in time or money.

  1. Fiverr – The online market places for services starting at $5

This is so good it should come with a warning sticker: You will get addicted. However, used right, you will get amazing results from Fiverr. It’s an online site where you can get people to do tasks and services of all kinds for, well, a fiver (and upwards).
At Lancom, we use Fiverr for video work, logo animation and many more things. It has become our go-to-tool if we need something creative done, but don’t have the time to handle it ourselves. Check it out by visiting the site – and there’s a Fiverr app for your phone, too, so you can get stuff done while on the move.

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Feb 16, 2016 9:30:00 AM

productivity cloud computing

Downtime: How much does it cost you?

Despite advances in the resilience of IT systems, there remains a grim reality of failures which have the rather unpleasant habit of striking at the least convenient of times. Even short periods of outages can wreak havoc; after all, our dependence on IT has never been higher. But outside of annoyance, what does downtime actually cost?

Factors to consider are:

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Written By Priscila Bernardes Feb 9, 2016 9:30:00 AM

productivity cloud computing Digital Transformation

5 signs that your business is ready for the cloud

With the whole world apparently going cloud crazy, you might get the idea that you’re missing out (and the chances are, if your technology systems are long in the tooth, you are). Check out these five signs which show your business is ready to take the leap…and reap the rewards.

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