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Project 2015: Project Management Trends You Need to Watch out for

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project management

project managementWith so many companies relying on IT projects, the need for good project management is in such high demand. With the fast pace at which project management changes, however, it is crucial to pay close attention to emerging trends in the industry.

Load Spring attests that to get in the middle of the emerging trends is to prepare for the future. Here is a look at the project management trends you need to keep an eye on this year.

The Need to Be Agile

With the forward momentum it has gained over the last year, Agile will continue to gain popularity in IT projects well within 2015 and beyond. With its cost-effectiveness and its structure of self-organizing teams, those with the title Scrum Master simply have overall mastery, autonomy, and purpose.

The Importance of Cyber security

Whether it is major corporations or the most popular Hollywood celebrities, if there was one thing that was prevalent last year, it was cyber attacks. You can expect more malicious attacks in 2015. Curb it by focusing your security efforts through project management instead of the technology that goes with it.

The Science of Risk Management

If there is one thing that is necessary to be a player in project management, it is risk management. Project managers will need to further sharpen their ability to sniff out overreach, scope or budget-wise, as well as the ability to maintain a high level of organization over projects.

The Prominence of Mobile Collaboration

How mobile-ready your project software is can very much determine how well you can make it in the project management game in 2015. Gone are the days when you had to balance work and life. Instead, you are in an age where there is a work and life combination with a workforce that is constantly on the go.

A Saturation of PMP Certified Project Managers

Young individuals struggling to make a name for themselves in the professional field is a tale as old as time. They can get ahead of the competition by getting PMP certification. Those who invest in this may not only benefit all the rest of the year, but the rest of the decade as well.

With each passing year, there is always a marked difference in the project management industry, both in terms of methodology and technology. With a month in, 2015 is firmly underway and you will see these trends shape the landscape of project management.


Blackberry’s $5.9B Annual Loss Better Than Expected

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Image by Enrique Dans | Wikimedia

Image by Enrique Dans | Wikimedia

Smartphone manufacturer Blackberry has registered a $5.9 billion net loss for its latest financial year.

Better than expected

According to figures, however, the most recent net loss of Blackberry was not so bad. In fact, it was better than expected. The loss was $423 million lower than the first figures projected for the first three months until March 1.

In the previous quarter, the company had a loss of $4.4 billion.

The losses of Blackberry come from the fierce competition among the smartphone maker, Apple’s iPhone, and Google’s Android-powered gadgets.

The financial year merited a $934 million loss due to unsold Z10 units, as well as a $512 expense for restructuring.

Looking up

Blackberry boss John Chen, who was appointed interim chief executive only in November 2013, said that this was a sign that the company is heading towards a “sounder financial footing.”

The company currently focuses on improving its services and its keyboard devices.

An analyst commended Chen’s efforts to stabilize Blackberry’s condition.

“The guy is on the move fast. He can control expenses but you can’t magically make revenue happen,” said BGC Partners analyst Colin Gillis.


Dropbox Now Worth US$10bn With $350M New Funding

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Dropbox is reported to have secured around US$350 million in its move to further its rapid growth. Others believe the numbers can even reach up to $450 million as other investors still pour in their resources.

New Valuation

dropboxThe huge injection propels the company’s valuation to $10 billion. Just three years ago, it raised $250 million which gave it a $4 billion valuation. The funds were reported to be used for expansive growth and stronger partnerships.

Dropbox is currently facing stiff competition against tech giants like Google and Microsoft when it comes to consumer cloud storage space. The cloud service hosts 200 million users; some of them are large-scale enterprises.

Crucial Development

The news opens other possibilities as the company is eyeing upping the cloud storage service ante. Still, nothing is set in stone; there is still no confirmation as to whether this is a stepping stone to an IPO.

Experts believe that Dropbox will try to leverage the use of data. What is important now is that investors are showing they are eager to see other tricks the firm has up its sleeve.


4 Threats to Your Business Systems: The Importance of Professional IT Assistance

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reliable IT assistanceNetwork disruptions can slow down or even freeze your entire workflow. As the Internet becomes a necessity, the dangers and risks that come with it also increases. Computer systems are vulnerable to different threats, and not being aware can significantly damage your entire network. Keep reading to know these common issues.

Attachments

Thousands of junk mails won’t do you harm, trust me. But, the attachments to these emails usually cause system failures. This is because hackers can easily attach or hide viruses in emails. Once downloaded, activated or installed, these can infect other programs and files, and may destroy your entire system.

Never open suspicious attachments from third party sources. Work with companies offering professional IT maintenance and assistance for better security. Keep in mind that these unwanted programs are tough to remove once they spread throughout your system. And in some cases, affected files are lost forever.

Employee Sabotage

In case you haven’t deactivated their access yet, disgruntled former employees can do heavy damage to your system. They can destroy your computer’s hardware, delete some important data, or install computer viruses or other malicious content. To make sure you’re safe from this attack, enable admin approvals when it comes to deleting or installing programs and applications. Have your IT people disable accounts and passwords as soon as the employee leaves the company.

Untrusted downloads

Unexpected popups in website browsers are annoying. They interrupt your work yet they pose a minor threat to your business. Applications that your employees download from unknown sources are another story, however. These may contain spyware and malware, and can enter your system through shared documents. Regularly updated anti-virus software can be helpful in scanning these threats. But if they’re bringing extreme impact to your business, you may need to work with a reliable computer support team to address the issue.

Irregular backups

You have more to fear than hackers’ attacks, and these include irregular backups. Without those regular backups, network failures and sudden power outages can wipe out important files in an instant. Start doing backups now and come up with an effective disaster recovery plan to mitigate the damage of such events.

The importance of IT support and maintenance

Let’s face it. While computers have simplified our lives and modernised our business, the systems inside them are still a challenge. From network interruptions to hardware and software issues, there’s a lot that could go wrong, which requires professional support and maintenance. This is why working with IT professionals can prevent work stoppage due to faulty networks. Working with them is also a cost effective and convenient way of keeping your business systems running smoothly, as you avoid the hassles of finding an in-house support system.

With all these new technology going on one thing is for sure – there will always be threats ranging from email attachments to disgruntled employees themselves. As network systems continue to innovate, so does the hackers’ ways of invading your defenses.

Don’t let these dangers ruin your business. Keep an updated security plan in place to avoid potential attacks.

Sources:

http://network-it.com.au
http://www.nettiehartsock.com/
http://www.mike-stuchbery.com/


Business and Design: Considerations on Designing A Data Center

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data designWith the emergence of new approaches in streamlining business operations, such as cloud computing and networking, IT professionals face a perennial problem in the form of data centers. Proper planning and implementation should be at top of their priorities because building and upgrading one falls squarely on these people.

There are many things to take into account when it comes to designing effective data centers. Each one is important for your company to improve your IT operations and your business’ successes in the long run.

Heat Buildup

Machineries like computer servers generate heat. That is why in many intensive data operations, experts must find a way to keep these pieces of equipment at a favorable temperature level. As they may lose important information once these servers go haywire, they should dissipate heat efficiently.

One way of doing this is utilizing cooling methods, such as liquid cooling. The process involves a self-contained water cooling loop that spreads and diminishes heat much faster than using traditional air fans. This setup usually requires a large space to work with. Basements and buffer floors are common places for the method.

Environmental Impact

Another thing that IT leaders should keep in mind is the center’s impact on its immediate environment. Many companies have already paid steep prices just because of their neglect to take into account the circumstances of their data center’s installation. Often, they face penalties from different agencies and government bodies on environment conservation.

An efficient data center design should have good green measures to reduce their carbon footprint. Things such as alternative fuel sources and effective cooling water consumption can improve your company in the long run. It can even refurbish your business image to clients and business partners, increasing your chance to expand your network.

Investment Cost

Building a data center takes a huge financial undertaking.It doesn’t mean, however, that you have to settle for substandard designs just to cut on expenses. Think of it as a long-term investment not just for your company, but also to the industry. By using well-made design plans, you are pushing the benchmarks of your business and making it the standard on business operations.

Indeed, data centers form a big part of a company. Without them, you will just waste a lot of company budget just to get at equal level with hundreds more. Take the leap and design one for your business now.


Should you Ignore SEO and Jump into Social Media Marketing?

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hiring reliable advertising expertsPotential buyers have many options when looking for a company and check if it will be a good investment for them. As a business owner, you just have to make sure that you’ll stand out from among your competitors. Marketing your business is one of the most important things you have to start doing if you’re eyeing business success.

When it comes to boosting your brand awareness and sales, there’s a variety of ways to attract possible customers to do business with you. Search engine optimization and social media marketing are only a few of the advertising strategies you can do.

SEO is the biggest craze in Internet marketing, especially for businesses looking to sell themselves on a larger scale. The purpose of SEO is to rank your website highly in major search engines pages, with the goal of attracting more clients. Things and times have changed, however, and in some industries, social media marketing is now more beneficial.

Faster Reach, Great Results

Most companies spend thousands of dollars for SEO, but it takes a while before they can get top results in search engine rankings and build an online reputation. With the help of social media and some advertising experts in Long Island offering social media marketing services, your business can become popular in no time. With engaging status updates and tweets rapidly spreading in social networking sites, you’ll reach more customers and get better sales.

Don’t Require Too Much technical Skills

SEO is a complex job. It requires more technical work than social media marketing. You need to follow the algorithms set by Google and other relevant search engines to get better ranking. With social media marketing, setting up a profile, posting some content, pictures, and videos, and constantly engaging your followers can help your business reach success faster.

You can certainly boost your online presence and sales at the same time if you implement only the right social media marketing strategy. Browse the Internet and look for a trusted marketing company in NY to help you get the job done perfectly. Do this and you’re likely to increase your sales and reach your goals easily.


Outsourcing and Your Business: Managing Relationships with the Provider

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outsourcingOutsourcing makes a lot sense if you don’t have enough time or people for certain tasks. It can keep you out of the employment minefield and along with the associated cost and other work issues.  It also allows you to tap into some valuable skills you wouldn’t otherwise have access to.

Obtaining outsource services, however, is a learning curve like anything else. To become successful with this endeavor, you have to manage your relationship with the service provider. This, in return, can help you manage or monitor your business’s success. Here are a few ways to manage your relationships with the outsource provider.

Establish Company’s Goals

Outsourcing is not just about reducing your operational cost. It’s more about improving your company’s focus, freeing up resources, and more. To know which outsource provider to choose, establish your company’s goals and objectives in the assessment phase. Through this, the deal will be more successful for both parties throughout the service period.

Know the Service Provider’s Goals

Your service provider also has its goals such as establishing a center of excellence, growing an internal staff or entering a new market. Make sure you understand the service provider’s goals to maximize the value of your relationship.

Know How Things Are

If you’re going to outsource functions like accounting or human resources, establish a daily, weekly, quarterly, or annual meeting. This is helpful to encourage flexibility, tighter business association, and enhance the outsourcing value on a continuing basis.

When the company gives you outsourcing reports, read and analyze them. If you don’t get any update, contact the provider immediately.

Create a Level Management Program

Develop service levels that reflect business requirement. If you’re outsourcing accounting services or payroll, for instance, have it processed on a timely basis. Try to develop only a few critical, business-based service levels, as they are more effective than hundreds of level management programs, which may be ignored over time.

Know More About the Provider’s Services

Outsourcing is more about finding ways to improve your business through the outsourcing provider’s experience. Make your company aware of the other services of your provider to offer additional benefits to the company. If you’re going to get their services, know the nature and structure of those solutions.

Establishing a good relationship with your outsourcing provider is a good way to get the most out of the deal. Work with them closely to reap all of the outsourcing benefits.


The A-Z of Online Branding

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choosing reliable seo companyOnline presence is your brand, especially if you don’t have tangible products clients can check out. Consumers are buying the information you present about your offerings and the reputation you’ve built to support it. The Web rules in this digital age and Google controls more than half of the search results, so it’s important to stand out.

With proper search engine optimisation strategies, you can build an online brand that creates a likable impression for first-time users, while engaging and rewarding long-time customers. Now is the right time to look at the image your website is projecting, and think of revamping it with the following tips:

Set Up Google Authorship

Although you’re creating insightful content, don’t forget to set up Google Authorship for each article. Through this, you’re telling Google you wrote the content and you’re building a reputation as being an expert in your field. This helps build your Author Rank and lead to improved rankings for the content you wrote. This also boosts recognition and visibility as an authority in your niche.

Maintain Your Social Presence

After establishing Google authorship, link to your newly written content from social media networks, including Twitter and Facebook. This gives you a chance to promote quality links and maintain your social media presence. To align with the recent algorithm updates, it’s advisable to get help from an SEO agency, as they stay current with the algorithms and know the best social media strategies that are on par with your marketing efforts. This supports your social media initiatives and encourages engagement from your customers.

Invest in Publications and Press

Promote and link to any publication where your brand or services are mentioned. This adds to your brand’s legitimacy. Display recent accomplishments on your site where visitors can easily find them. Awards and recognitions you’ve earned indicate the quality of your brand. Having “Awards and Recognitions” and “Press Releases” sections on your website can be valuable to enhance your credibility.

Developing a strong online presence, staying current with effective SEO techniques and trends, and paying attention to your overall online branding boost both positive customer experience and search rankings. Your brand reputation isn’t out of your hands. Take control of your brand and gain leads from improving your online visibility.


The Web Design Trends of 2013

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Optimized Web DesigningWeb design is changing constantly with new design codes and scripts. It’s so dynamic that many innovative updates are introduced regularly, which surprises even the most tenured professional designers. This year, optimized website design trends are grabbing the attention of people all over the Internet. Here’s a quick look at the most popular web design concepts for 2013:

Minimalist Landing Pages

Owning a website is necessary for businesses, as it serves as an additional exposure outlet for their products and services worldwide. With the popularity of online shopping, having a large customer base on the web can increase profits. Many businesses try to follow a minimalist approach, where they display everything in the index or landing page strategically. This makes it easier for visitors to browse through all content without clicking on different categories. Homepage shortcuts that lead to promos are also beneficial in this kind of web design.

Introduction Boxes

Intro boxes allow website owners to introduce themselves immediately using graphics and text. Upon visiting the landing page, site visitors will have an idea about the business as a whole. It’s similar to an “About Me” page on social networking sites, but less formal and more personal. Catchphrases are effective here, as the website’s priority is to grab attention in a friendly way.

Endless or Infinite Scrolling

Typically, there’s a limit on how far visitors can scroll down a website. They need to click the next page or jump to a specific page that they want to visit. Infinite scrolling, however, doesn’t limit browsing capabilities. This trend became famous with the demand of computer mouse devices with scroll buttons. For instance, social media sites such as Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and Google+ allow members and site visitors to search for anything and scroll down as much as they can. The webpage keeps on loading continuously until it reaches the oldest information uploaded on the site.

There’s always change when it comes to web design styles and features. Following the trends may seem effective, but you can add a little twist to make your site unique. Look for a reliable website design company to help you create an amazing website interface.


Emails That Convert: Marketing Practices That Work

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Email marketing allows companies to send information, tips, and promotions to a target market. With the help of SEO companies in Birmingham, businesses generate leads and reach the people most interested in their products or services. Through this method, customer relations and brand awareness improve significantly.

Value Customers’ Privacy and Options

Most companies offer optional emails either through a blog, email, or both. “Optional” is the operative term, so avoid becoming one of the companies that force themselves onto people. Customers usually subscribe to receive this information voluntarily, so it’s important to respect their privacy and not share their personal information with other companies. Also, give them an easy way to unsubscribe.

Write Interesting, Friendly Newsletter Emails

A Birmingham SEO company can send newsletters about once a month on behalf of their clients. These emails often include interesting, readable, and engaging pieces of content already present on the website. These newsletters let visitors and customers know about the best deals and relevant content, similar to the printed newsletters that companies send out through the post.

Create Promotional Emails That Go Straight to the Point

These types of emails usually don’t have much content, as they focus on selling and persuasion. An attractive graphic or a powerful video often helps the call to action. When done tactfully, promotional emails encourage customers to take action, usually around a new service or product offered. This also applies to events, special offers, and subscriber-only or members-only deals.

Use Eye-Catching Titles and Avoid Spam-Like Tactics

Research shows that most people decide to keep or delete an email without opening it first. According to the Email Sender and Provider Coalition (ESPC), around 60% of users click the “Report Spam” or “Junk” button because of a poor subject line. Use the title to summarize the content rather than flashy, promotional lines that overuse uppercase characters and exclamation points.

Make Things a Little More Personal

There are great ways to make sure that readers always get the emails they subscribed to. Give the reader a clear way to reach you, and remind them to add the company’s email to their address books. Whenever possible, personalize the message by adding their names automatically in the greeting, but don’t overdo it.

Companies like Digital Cherry provide expertise in several online promotion techniques like email marketing. Visit their website to get more information and find out how these services can benefit your business.