5 Reasons Pittsburgh Businesses are Embracing Hybrid IT Departments

The role of data has changed. Businesses across the world are continuing to see an increase in the vast amounts of data they produce. Five reasons why Pittsburgh businesses adopt a hybrid IT department are as follows.

1. Employee Turnover
Most businesses find that the turnover in IT departments is higher than in other departments in the company. More often than not, the root of the problem is that IT staff members are finding their work repetitive or unrewarding. By embracing the Hybrid, you will have JENLOR as your
loyal IT Department.

2. Reduces Administrative Burdens
When you go with a Hybrid IT department, this frees up your IT staff for other projects. Rather than spending their time on patching and hardware refreshes, they can pursue the organization’s IT strategic goals.

3. Your company with be up-to-date on Technology
Technology is forever changing! Usually, IT department workers don’t have the privilege of being able to devote themselves to keeping up with new information. Instead, they are faced with ‘putting out fires’. By hybridizing your IT team, there’s a natural flow of information between
groups. Keep your company and IT department up-to-date!

4. You’ll save money
When you switch to a hybrid IT department you will save money! Who doesn’t love saving money? Rather than hiring additional IT personnel with highly specialized knowledge, a company using a hybrid IT model can contract with JENLOR.

5. You’ll have another set of eyes
Your IT department has one way of looking at something. When you hire JENLOR as a hybrid IT department, we will come in with fresh eyes. We will be able to look at what you are currently doing and offer ways to improve and grow your business.

Thinking of going hybrid with your company? Contact JENLOR today to get started!

What to Do If Your Business is Still Running Office 2010

As you may know, the popular Office 2010 has reached its end of life. This means that if you  have Office 2010, you will no longer receive technical support, bug fixes, or security updates.  The end of life also means that if there are any security issues, organizations, and individuals still using Office 2010 will not be protected. If you currently own Office 2010, you might be  wondering, what are your options?

Option 1 – Stay with Office 2010. 

Sticking with Office 2010 is the easiest option, but it’s definitely not the safest! As a business,  this presents a potential (and ever-increasing) security risk. Why? Because the more time that  passes after the support is dropped, the higher the chance that malicious third-parties will have  found (and exploited) any security vulnerabilities in Office 2010. Security will be your biggest  factor if you stay with Office 2010.

Another roadblock you may face is incompatibility from Office 2010 with some of the newer  programs and file formats. This could become a pain if you are sending or receiving files from  clients that are in newer versions of Office.

Option 2 – Contact JENLOR to assist you in moving to Microsoft 365. If you’ve been using Office  2010, you might wonder exactly what you’re missing.  

The first thing you are going to be missing is security! As mentioned above, with Office 2010,  you will lose security. If you move to Microsoft 365, you will get a subscription plan that makes it  easy for you to win certainty over software vulnerabilities and allow you to budget your business  overhead without hidden money pits. Microsoft 365 also will improve your teamwork and  communication with its Team feature especially as more and more companies are working from  home. Microsoft 365 can significantly benefit your business and it will keep your company safe and save you money as time goes on!

Looking to upgrade your Microsoft account? Contact JENLOR today and get started!

Is Microsoft Azure good for small business?

Could Microsoft Azure be the cloud computing solution that helps your small business take your IT infrastructure to the next level?

Microsoft Azure is the number one cloud-based software service for Fortune 500 companies. In fact, 90% of Fortune 500 firms use Microsoft Azure.

Why Do You Need Azure Cloud Services?
There are hundreds of reasons as to why any given business could use Microsoft Azure. Here are a few examples of how Azure can help your small business.

Security and Compliant Storage – All too often, small businesses worry that security upgrades are beyond their budget or IT team’s capabilities. Small businesses can improve their security posture with Azure’s multi-layered security solutions, which combine automated 24/7/365 threat intelligence monitoring with other tools.

Pricing – By investing in Azure, a business can completely forgo having to commit capital to real estate and hardware. With Azure’s extremely reasonable pricing, it just makes no sense for a smaller business to build a data center itself.

Azure Solutions – The platform supports many business needs including ecommerce, big data and analytics, and disaster recovery. You can create your applications or platforms by leveraging azure infrastructure.

The benefits of Azure are long! Azure is secure, scalable, and reliable while giving organizations insight into their data and needs.

Thinking about getting Azure? Contact JENLOR today to learn more about Microsoft Azure!

What is Microsoft Azure and why it matters.

Microsoft Azure is usually described as having “unlimited possibilities,” but what does Microsoft Azure actually do and what can it do for your business?

First let’s start with the basics, what is Microsoft Azure?

The Azure cloud platform is more than 200 products and cloud services designed to help you bring new solutions to life. Azure has solutions for Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS) that can be used for services such as virtual computing, networking, storage, and more.

How does Microsoft Azure Work? 

Once customers subscribe to Azure, they have access to all the Azure services included in the Azure portal. Subscribers can use these services to create cloud-based resources, such as virtual machines and databases. Many organizations use Azure storage as an archive in order to meet their long-term Data retention requirements.

Microsoft provides five different customer support options for Azure. They are; Basic, Developer, Standard, Professional Direct and Premier. Basic support is available to all Azure accounts, but Microsoft charges a fee for the other support offerings.

How can Microsoft Azure benefit my business? 

There are a great number of answers to this question and here are just a few.

Microsoft Azure is flexible! Whether you’ve experienced a positive spike in business or the demand for a more efficient solution has become apparent, Azure has you covered. You can set in motivation innovative new services at lightning speed, scale data storage and capabilities instantly.

Microsoft Azure should be a cost savings for your business.The migration will have fewer expenses upfront and ongoing.Since your Cloud provider is responsible for security, your security costs are also built-in, saving you money in ongoing updates.

With Azure you can expand your business and cover more world wide. Microsoft claims that they cover more than any other cloud hosting provider. Azure covers 140 countries and 54 regions, this is big for businesses that are trying to be or are world wide.

How will you use Azure? Contact JENLOR today for IT Microsoft Azure services!

Office 365 Tips

Performance means everything in today’s marketplace. Businesses that accomplish their goals satisfy their customers and set the stage for success. Similarly, employees that efficiently perform their tasks and other responsibilities contribute to the success of their company and increase personal value.

Modern technology gives you as an employer or business owner almost limitless opportunities for productivity and efficiency gains, but much of that potential lies untapped. Developing an awareness of the capabilities of your everyday software and learning how to access little-known features can help you and your team produce better deliverables using less time.

Office 365 transcends the image of a traditional productivity suite by creating a system that incorporates all other relevant services such as Dynamics CRM and OneDrive. Add Power BI to the mix, and you have a robust collection of tools that will help you do work faster and smarter.

You probably know that you can do many fantastic things using Office 365, but have not yet learned how to maximize its potential. The following tips reveal some of the less-known features at your disposal and show you how to find them and put them to use.

When businesses learn how to maximize the potential of Office 365, they gain capabilities that make them more valuable. If you own your business, you have the knowledge to help your firm compete in challenging market conditions. As an employee, your ability to leverage the nuances of software increases your productivity and helps you stay in command of your career.

 

1. Use Office 365 Tools On Most Devices

With Office 365, your team can stay focussed and productive no matter where they are or what device they’re working from. Encourage employees to use Office 365 apps on their phones and tablets that way, they’ll be able to edit documents, check out visuals, and watch presentations on the go. Teams within your organization will be able to stay connected no matter who is in the office, on site, or working from home.

 

2. Sync Timezones

Our Office 365 tips and tricks offer the answer to staying in sync regardless of what time zones employees are in. Having various versions of documents saved to different places can lead to major business inefficiencies. Whether it’s a group document or an individual project, multiple file versions can cause unnecessary confusion and stress. More than one version of a ‘final copy’ may even appear meaning additional last-minute work for your team as they scramble to make sure one version has all the correct edits before submission.

 

3. Alerts Via SharePoint

Have you ever spent too much time manually checking a file for updates? Or have you been reading from a file mid-meeting only to realize it had been updated since you last went over it? These are avoidable productivity and accountability workplace hurdles. If you activate SharePoint’s Alert Me function, you’ll be automatically emailed or texted when changes are made to a file or library.

If you are interested in learning more about Office 365, please contact JENLOR today!

Pittsburgh IT Project Roadmapping

IT project roadmaps offer a strategic overview of essential parts of a project. Unlike project plans, no one is looking at an IT project roadmap for specific tasks, deadlines, or resource allocation. IT project roadmaps are big picture and tend to be high level in nature.

Information technology (IT) is a business imperative in the world today. Technology has impacted every sector, and for most industries, there are no exceptions. Because of this, strategic IT planning must be an integral part of an organization’s strategic planning into the future.

IT planning encompasses an organization’s leadership, organizational structures and process. This IT planning can help ensure that the organization achieves its strategic goals and objectives throughout each and every year.

The strategic IT plan should reflect the relevance of technology to each of the organization’s strategic business goals, and changes the organization will need to make to its information and communications infrastructure.

An organization’s technology environment must be aligned with its long-term strategic plan, goals and objectives. An organization’s management must recognize the critical role of technology in laying the foundation for and enabling its strategic direction and operational goals.

If your organization is falling behind when it comes to IT, contact JENLOR for assistance today!

 

5 Ways to Work Smarter in Outlook

Microsoft Outlook comes with a raft of features that make managing your busy schedule and boosting your productivity easier. If you find Outlook’s capabilities overwhelming, don’t worry these tips and tricks will have you using Outlook in hardly any time at all.

Organization

Is your Outlook inbox too cluttered for your liking? Use the Clean Up feature to tidy up your inbox.

From your inbox, click the Home tab and choose from one of three Clean Up options:

  • Clean Up Conversation – reviews an email thread or a conversation and deletes redundant messages
  • Clean Up Folder – reviews conversations in a selected folder and deletes redundant messages
  • Clean Up Folder & Subfolders – reviews all messages in a selected folder and any subfolders, and deletes redundant messages in all of them

The Outlook Ignore Button

Besides redundant messages, group conversations that aren’t relevant to you can clutter up your inbox. The Ignore button helps you organize your inbox and focus on relevant emails.

To activate this feature, select a message, then click Home > Ignore > Ignore Conversation. You can also do this by opening a message in a new window and clicking Ignore under the Delete function. You can easily revert this action by going to the Deleted Items folder and clicking Ignore > Stop Ignoring Conversation.

Share Links to Files

This function is especially useful when you need to send large files to your coworkers or clients. You can send a link to the file instead of the file itself as well as set permissions to allow recipients to edit and collaborate on linked files in real time.

To accomplish this, upload the file you wish to send to OneDrive. Then from the message box, click Attach File > Browse web locations > OneDrive.

Schedule Meetings on Microsoft Teams

Teams is Microsoft’s communication and collaboration platform and includes the Outlook add-in. This feature allows you to set up Teams meetings directly from Outlook. It also lets you view, accept, or join meetings in either app.

To schedule a Teams meeting on Outlook, follow the following steps:

  1. Switch to the calendar view on Outlook. Click the New Teams Meeting tab.
  2. Add individual participants or entire contact groups to the Required or Optional fields.
  3. Type in the topic, start time, and end time of the meeting. There’s no need to add the dial-in phone numbers and conferencing IDs to the invite, as Outlook does this automatically for you.
  4. Create a message inviting the recipients to the meeting, then click Send.

Tag People in Your Contacts

To get the attention of a specific person in a group email or meeting invite, use the @Mention function. This works particularly well for emails sent to multiple recipients or if you want to convey the urgency of your message.

In the body of your email or invite message, type the @ symbol followed by the name of the person you want to tag (e.g., @johndoe). Doing so will highlight the name in the message and automatically add it to the To line of your message.

You can also search for messages you are tagged in by selecting Filter Email from the Home tab, and then clicking Mentioned.

These are just some of the things you can do to improve your Outlook experience. For more on how to get the most out of Outlook, contact JENLOR today!

Understanding Microsoft 365 Tools

There are three collaboration tools in Microsoft 365 that offer solutions for the same issue: Outlook Groups, Yammer, and Microsoft Teams. However, they all have slight differences that set them apart from one another.

How Does Outlook Groups Work?

In Outlook Groups, each member gets a shared inbox, calendar, project planner, notebook, and document library. You can also connect to third-party apps such as Twitter, Trello, and Mailchimp, with notifications sent directly to your shared inbox.

This means all relevant messages and information will be sent to one place, so if most of your conversations are done via email, Outlook Groups is a great fit. Also, HR and sales departments that communicate with external parties will find plenty of uses for its email features.

A big downside of Outlook Groups is email overload. Because all messages and notifications are sent to one inbox, users become overwhelmed by the number of emails they have to sort through every day.

What is Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams, a chat-based collaboration platform similar to Slack which works with Skype for Business so you can text, call, video chat, and share files with colleagues. Thanks to its seamless integrations with other Microsoft 365 programs, you can even work on shared files without leaving the app.

Unlike Groups, Microsoft Teams is designed for more advanced collaboration, making it great for completing projects with tight deadlines or other tasks requiring immediate feedback.

What is Yammer?

Improve engagement and enhance communication within your organization. Build communities of interest, gather ideas and feedback, and keep everyone informed, aligned, and moving forward with help from Yammer.

With Yammer, important files and announcements can be shared with the entire company like an office bulletin board. Users can also see the most popular post on their feeds, follow it, and even comment.

Yammer also takes design elements and features from social media apps like Facebook, making it a popular choice for companies with millennials in their workforce.

Although we’ve discussed an overview of the differences between Groups, Teams, and Yammer, we’ve barely scratched the surface of what each app can do. To figure out which apps your company needs, you must understand how your employees work, how they prefer to collaborate, and what you want to achieve from such collaborations.

Contact JENLOR today for an IT evaluation!

How to Choose the Best Pittsburgh Managed Services Provider

Business owners are realizing the importance of utilizing efficient, flexible, and cost-effective IT systems. But as everyone’s expectations rise, IT becomes far too complex and demanding for businesses to manage on their own. This is why many companies outsource their IT to JENLOR.

Selecting the Best Pittsburgh Managed Services Provider

While there are many MSPs in Pittsburgh, not all of them are equipped to meet your company’s unique needs like JENLOR.

Keep in mind these criteria when choosing an Managed Service Provider:

  • Experience – Any MSP should have the skills and experience that go beyond basic software installation, maintenance, and upgrades. At JENLOR, we have expertise in advanced IT functions, such as database management, cloud technology, security, and cross-platform integration, so we can keep up with your company’s growing IT journey.
  • Support – With IT being the backbone of your business operations, you need an IT partner who will be there for the long haul.
  • IT Strategy Call – Searching for a Pittsburgh IT provider? Start with a quick IT Strategy Call with one of our IT experts. We’ll learn about what’s holding you back and determine if JENLOR is the right fit.

Choosing the right provider is a very important step that will impact the performance and success of your business. If you want to learn how JENLOR can support your business, contact us today.

Office 365 Managed Services

Analyzing a graph of active users of Office 365 shows a steady rise with 200 million commercial active monthly users in October 2019, up 20 million every six months. The continuous growth reflects the benefits of Office 365 – with an ROI of 162% and a payback of seven months – and strong enterprise interest in the new workforce collaboration hub, Microsoft Teams. But organizations with Office 365 can find their journey fraught with costly missteps and time-intensive administration – which can be avoided with the benefit of Office 365 with JENLOR.

Office 365 Suite Benefits

  • Weekly time saved due to improved collaboration and information sharing and more efficient meetings: 203 minutes per user
  • Reduction in costs associated with other collaboration software and hardware solutions: $6.5M
  • Number of hours saved per user per year from reduced downtime: 15.75 hours

The Advantages of Managed Office 365 Services

A lot of IT time will be required to plan, implement, deploy, and support Office 365, which is why the following benefits of Managed Office 365 can provide a substantial return for many businesses.

1. Get Started in the Right Direction

An investment calls for doing it right the first time. Office 365 is not one size fits-all, and Managed Office 365 services helps you fully understand your choices. With Managed Office 365 services you can reduce risk with upfront discovery and design to determine the best deployment model for Office 365, specific to your business.

2. Office 365 Environment

You may not want to go all cloud all the time, if you need to balance differing requirements across an organization. For example, you may want to integrate Office 365 with on-premise Microsoft Exchange infrastructure for greater flexibility. Or you may not want to move all your end-user data to the Microsoft cloud; you may want to keep some user data on premises. At JENLOR, we can design a custom hybrid environment for your business.

3. Minimize Cost for Licenses

Do you already have Microsoft Office licenses? We’ll work with you to design an Office 365 deployment that makes the best use of your existing licenses on servers, devices, desktops, and in the cloud.

4. Office 365 Deployment

While your IT team may not have deployed Office 365 before, JENLOR’s Managed Office 365 advisors do it every week. With JENLOR as an extension of your team, your IT staff can be as involved or as uninvolved as they want. We’ve got you covered from complex discovery and design to integration with existing infrastructure, and on through routine email and user administration.

5. Simple Solutions

You have limited internal IT resources. Managed Office 365 frees up your IT admin resources to do what they do best – run your business. You can pass the complexity of managing Office 365 to a dedicated team that focuses on Office 365 every day. Our Office 365 managed services team can ease your burden of daily maintenance and support. We have a large and capable service delivery staff of our own, and we subscribe to Premier Support from Microsoft, so we can escalate and resolve your Office 365 problems swiftly.

6. Office 365 is Scalable to Meet Your Business Needs

When you need Office 365 for more users, you can easily add licenses through the TierPoint Portal to meet the growing needs of your business.

7. Support 24/7

How many help desk calls do you get when you upgrade a piece of software like Microsoft Office? We optionally offer end-user help desk services for our Managed Office 365 customers who want to ensure end-users get the support they need, while IT focuses on more strategic initiatives.

We’ll handle basic end-user questions such as password resets, login issues, and Outlook connection problems, so you don’t have to. Your end users get access to our experienced Office 365 support team with advice for setup and configuration, and support for all Office applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and more), Exchange, SharePoint, Yammer, and Teams.

Contact us today to learn how we can help your business with Office 365!