Proactive Managed IT Services vs Reactive IT

A single IT disaster can set your company back months, which can negatively impact your budget.

Your staff is trying to put out fires and pick up the pieces, but they keep getting more added to their plates. Customers are left waiting—or they simply leave. Your reputation takes heavy hits and it’s hard to get even the most basic tasks done.

This scenario is more common than you’d think, especially for companies that take a reactive approach to IT management. Here at JENLOR, we want to explain the importance of proactive managed IT services vs reactive IT.

Reactive IT

The problem is right in the name “reactive.”

If you don’t do anything to address a problem until it affects productivity, it will negatively impact your business. Since a traditional IT project often exceeds an original budget, fixing an existing problem can be both inconvenient and expensive.

Proactive IT support makes it possible to stay ahead of problems. You don’t lose productivity. Your reputation is safe. Employee morale doesn’t take a hit. It can be a much more cost effective investment.

Benefits Of Proactive Managed IT Services

Proactive IT support offers a few distinct benefits that make a significant difference for operations. Below are the areas in which you’ll see the most significant boost.

24/7 Observation

Unscheduled downtime can throw everyone at your company off track. Customers can’t make purchases, phone lines go down, the network is inaccessible, and resources lock up due to unresponsive machines. 24/7 monitoring alerts your team the minute something goes down so it can be resolved immediately.

Active Updates And Patches

Many cyberattacks rely on unpatched hardware and software. A proactive update schedule limits opportunities for hackers. The latest patch may also add new features or otherwise improve performance. Proactive upgrades are especially important for maintaining older technology that may be more susceptible to attack.

Future Tech Preparation

Adding new solutions piece by piece without a plan results in a bloated infrastructure, which is not the best option. A proactive strategy allows you to adapt to a changing business environment and meet future challenges.

Tactical Analysis

A strategic analysis allows you to identify problem areas that act as bottlenecks to optimal performance. Sometimes, broken software or hardware is the cause of the issue, while other scenarios require policy changes.

Get Proactive

Proactive managed IT empowers your business to do more with your technology. We provide 24/7 live help desk, managed services, project management, and a dedicated strategic account management team – we fill the gaps in your IT process. Connect with us today!

How A Managed Cloud Service Provider Can Help Your Organization

Managed cloud hosting is used by organizations to share resources across a remote network through multiple servers in another location. Some of these resources include databases, hardware, and software tools. Servers are purchased either in parts or as virtual servers. Managed cloud services involve outsourcing management responsibilities and functions for saving costs and improving operations.

Why Having a Managed Cloud Service Provider is a Valuable Asset

Cloud computing is essential to business growth, as it helps businesses reap the maximum benefits of cloud adoption by means of cost-effective and well-managed computing resources, IT efficiency, and flexibility. If managed cloud services is something that you are considering for your business, take a look at the benefits.

Tackle the Complication Involved in Hybrid

As organizations build hybrid environments that extend across data center facilities and multiple clouds, they have discovered that implementing and managing a robust cloud strategy is not an easy task.

We are experts when it comes to hybrids, and we have a vast knowledge that spans beyond just a few applications. Our experience and knowledge proves invaluable in areas such as governance and compliance, workload assessment and migration, design, and continuous management.

Construct Original Strategies

In today’s age of digital transformation, organizations are more than willing to modify their existing business processes and operations. This will eventually lead them towards finding their niche in the fast-paced, globally-competitive service economy. Technology assets and good IT leadership are critical for helping organizations transit seamlessly into this digital age.

Partnering with us allows us to take over the responsibility of managing cloud services while freeing up your IT staff.

Transparency. Transparency. Transparency.

Organizations need to implement practical and realistic strategies that are based on variables. Some of these variables include the work involved, departments, and the actual costs involved per project. We offer organizations the much-required accessibility to advanced technologies that help improve the visibility and reporting for projects. This enables the business and IT managers to take and implement smarter strategies.

Future Growth for the Organization

Today, organizations know that investing in the cloud means investing in a robust future. JENLOR provides advanced technologies that help organizations move their cloud services to effective hybrid clouds. This helps organizations to continuously make use of a range of applications and technologies.

Enterprises across the globe have recognized the cloud as a critical enabler of business transformation and innovation. The cloud has emerged as a powerful technology disruptor that constantly challenges the existing IT landscape, compelling enterprises to adopt newer cloud-based paradigms or risk losing the game. Choose to partner with JENLOR! We understand that finding the right migration partner, service model, deployment option, and type of workload to be moved are of paramount significance. Contact us today!

5 Reasons Businesses Shift to an Outsourced IT Help Desk

Over the last couple of years, the financial spend on an internal IT department has steadily increased. This serves as one of the many reasons investigate working with a managed IT service provider.

Here are the 4 reasons why companies are moving to an outsourced IT help desk.

Absence of In-house Customer Service

Generally, an internal IT department is started for a very specific need, and over time the scope of work gets broadened so much that they get spread thin and this results in poor internal service to their staff, or projects not getting accomplished.

Technical Ability

As a company grows, their scope grows; and usually to a point that they cannot stay abreast of all the technology they need to properly support themselves. Or maybe they cannot afford to hire technical talent for the advanced technologies that they need. Outsourcing help desk support to JENLOR, saves a significant amount of money, resources, and time. Additionally, it allows the internal IT department to focus on specific strategic initiatives that really help a company grow.

Management Struggles

When an internal IT department begins to develop, it becomes increasingly difficult and to manage the range of skills and personalities, along with the dispersed priorities. Often times additional managers have to be brought in to manage different teams or aspects and it just becomes a costly headache that distracts companies from their core objectives.

Diversity

Few mid-size to large companies outsource every part of their help desk. That is the beauty of an outsourced IT help desk, the scope can be very specific or very wide ranging.

Our team will work with you to identify your goals, analyze your needs, and create a custom plan to propel your business forward. Contact us to learn more about how we can help your IT department achieve greater success.

How JENLOR is Providing Security Solutions During COVID-19

Security Solutions During COVID-19

One of the biggest changes for our clients has been the shift to remote work. State lockdowns and social distancing have forced businesses to transition to a remote workforce at the drop of a hat.

While you may be concerned about remote employees’ productivity, your biggest worry should be security. We work hard to establish a secure perimeter around our clients with firewalls, antivirus software, and monitoring solutions. However, companies are now venturing into uncharted and unsecured territory.

Working on personal devices and home networks opens up vulnerabilities. Cybercriminals are chomping at the bit to take advantage of situations like this. You need to contact JENLOR today to go over all your security-based needs.

From internal processes and remote security patching to security training and awareness, every security solution and practice needs to be deployed to ensure your business and your employees are working safely.

JENLOR Helps You Take Control

If implemented correctly, IT is your greatest ally. In the era of Cloud computing and cybersecurity, it’s quite common to become overwhelmed with options – server design, backup policies, and security solutions. Plus, amongst everything going on right now with COVID-19, it’s hard to feel like you’re in control.

At JENLOR, we empower our clients to realize their vision for the future by untangling complex IT challenges. Backed by a team of passionate people, our in-depth service delivery enables our team to do the heavy lifting so our clients can focus on what they do best. Contact us today to learn more about what services we offer and how we can help you continue to stay active during COVID-19.

What is A Mistake I Could Make When Moving to the Cloud?

Watch Frank Schlatterer, JENLOR’s Chief Technology Officer explain the key variables to avoid mistakes when moving to the Cloud. Contact JENLOR to determine if a move to the cloud is right for your company.

What is a mistake I could make when moving to the cloud?

One common mistake companies make is that moving to the cloud will cure all ills while they have problems with their internal infrastructure. A lot of times a move to the cloud is the right decision for a business. However, by itself it does not solve problems if you have not done your due diligence.

Improper planning and not taking an appropriate look at third party vendors can also serve as a common mistake companies make.

Select Cloud Solutions  on Legacy Systems:

Moving legacy apps to the cloud can be extremely beneficial for most companies. However, when many companies make a transition to cloud computing, they fail to recognize the advantages of other cloud solutions that could be a better fit their operations and goals. For example, a company that uses Microsoft Exchange may think that their best option is to transition to Exchange Online. even though Office 365 or Google Apps offer even more capabilities than the cloud-based upgrade to the current system.

Additionally, when companies upgrade their legacy systems to a cloud-based application, they can easily overlook the increased functionality they have. Often, the approaches for using older versions of the software are so ingrained, that many employees continue using the application in much the same way as they used older versions. Without proper training or planning, companies fail to take advantage of new capabilities that could make employees’ more productive.

Managed Services & Cloud Services

  • Network / Security Monitoring
  • 24×7 Help Desk
  • Cloud Services & Collocation
  • Managed Backup Solutions
  • Strategic Account Management

Have an IT question? Learn more on our website.

Virtual Private Network (VPN)

Virtual Private Network VPN

With the majority of the workforce working from home, it is absolutely crucial that you are working from a safe and secure network. The most common way to do this, is through a virtual private network, or a VPN. A VPN is a secure way of transporting data across unknown network. Technically speaking, it is an encrypted tunnel for your internet traffic that goes through an open internet (in this case, your home office) to your network at the office.You can connect through a VPN no matter what network you’re on or where you are and you will “appear” to be sitting at your office desk, as if you were actually there.

If you have a VPN set up, but your connection isn’t stable or consistent, it’s important to make sure that you have the latest VPN client.

If you have never used or set up VPN, it’s important to install and configure the VPN client properly. Your IT department or provider can walk you through the process to make sure you are set up and ready to go.

Hackers are at an all time high as remote workers moved out of their offices. They are adapting their attack methods to the COVID-19 situation and are urging end users to open a link or fill out personal information that can deploy malware. Having a VPN will encrypt network traffic and hackers won’t be able to get your passwords or other sensitive information.

It’s essential to protect your personal and professional data. Consider VPN almost a requirement to help you work more securely from home and eliminate security risks. If you need assistance in finding the best VPN client for your business, contact JENLOR today and we will walk you through the process to make sure all risks are eliminated.

How to Work From Home With a Family

How to work from home with a family

It’s now been a few weeks of working from home and you’ve realized that it’s not quite a walk in the park – especially if you have a spouse and children at home. Even people who are considered “seasoned veterans” of working from home, now have challenges of working remote with additional family members around them. Below are five tips on how to work from home with a family to make sure that you don’t have to take your next conference call from the master bedroom closet:

1. Think of The Big Picture and Make a Plan

If it is your first time working from home, you have to make a plan on how you will act on the work tasks that will come your way. You have to schedule yourself – what is the best time and place to make calls? Where can I sit and complete some administrative tasks while making sure little Johnny is online for his virtual classes? You may need to alternate home duties with your spouse that is also working from home, but communication is key and don’t underestimate the challenges that will follow.

2. Have a Conversation With Your Boss and Colleagues

It is very important to stay on top of your game and continue to go above and beyond for your job duties. Working from home may be a privilege during this time, but don’t take advantage of it. If you are open and honest with your boss and team about your unique circumstances – make sure you voice any obstacles that may come in your way or if any parts of your job may be impacted while working from home. It’s important for them to understand the situation, so that they can offer solutions or rearrange tasks with others.

3. Change Priorities and Deadlines

Your goal should be to successfully fulfill the essential parts of your job while at the same time care for your family. Confirm what is really essential and move out deadlines of initiatives that are no longer as important as they were a few weeks ago. Projects have inevitably moved and you want to focus on what CAN be done in the present time. Stay in regular contact with your team to make sure you get feedback on priorities and deadlines.

4. Stamina!

Manage and optimize your stamina. This means eat foods rich in nutrients, drink lots of water, get as much rest as you can and try to stay active. It’s extremely easy to get lazy during these times, but it can become a bad habit that’s bad to break. These bad habits then leave you crabby the next workday and you won’t be able to take on your workload, which keeps getting piled. Tell yourself that everyone around you will benefit from being around a happier you.

5. Communication is Key

While communicating with your boss and team is extremely important, it’s just as important to communicate with your spouse and family about expectations at home. Talk about the established ways no longer working in this new setting. It’s important to discuss shared responsibilities and what needs to change. Whatever it is, share your thoughts early; waiting until you are frustrated will lead to blaming each other or completely failing on all tasks.

You will learn that change is hard. Don’t get hung up on little things and take baby steps. This is certainly a difficult lifestyle, but once you’ve established a routine, both you and your spouse will be proud of your abilities to adapt in such tough situations.

Top 3 Remote Access Solutions

Remote Access Solutions

You’ve started working from home the past week or two and things just aren’t going your way. You have a work laptop, but you can’t connect it. You have a personal laptop, but nothing is loading through your connection. You can’t be productive if you can’t connect and you wish someone could just come to your house and fix it.

We understand your headache. There are a few things that need to happen in order for you to safely and securely work from home.

Remote Access Solutions

Remote Desktop Services

An environment should have Remote Desktop Services enabled on the environment. What is Remote Desktop? It is simply a technology that allows users to connect to a specific computer from a remote location as if they were sitting in front of it. This will effectively allow them to work from anywhere – home, a coffee shop, the airport – anywhere outside of the office. There is tons of flexibility by being able to connect from anywhere. This technology has revolutionized dynamics of modern business functions, especially the IT industry.

Virtual Private Network (VPN)

A virtual private network (VPN) is a network that is constructed using public wires — usually the internet — to connect remote users or regional offices to a company’s private, internal network. A business should utilize VPN access to securely access either their office workstation or network resources. So, what is VPN? It’s a service that takes an internet connection and makes it more secure. It lends them a temporary IP address and hides your real IP address from websites or emails to ensure safety. Having a VPN account can instantly provide more privacy, higher security, more website access, all while staying anonymous.

Verification Through Your IT Provider

If you don’t have a very high need for internal documents or getting into the network, you can also gain access to web enabled applications, sites and email connected through the web. You will want to be verified to do this through your IT department or provider. It is certainly an option, but Remote Desktop and VPN are recommended before this solution.

If you are working from home and are not using one of the above solutions to connect, or are unsure of your security, contact the Sales team at JENLOR at 412-220-9330 ext. 3 and an expert can get you set up.

Growing Trend of Working Remotely

working remotely

If you work for a “non-life-sustaining” business, the chances of you working from home right now are probably close to 100%. You’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a million times – this will help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The more people stay at home, the less likely they are to catch the virus, therefore the less need for them at hospitals, where masks and ventilators are in extreme shortage.

In the past, working from home, or “remote”, was not a good look. Employers believed that those employees would not get any work done and managers would not be able to keep an eye on their direct reports. It was very rare and only accommodated through special arrangements.

Working Remotely

On the other hand, working remotely can be a huge cost savings to the employer to help save on overhead costs. Today’s workforce is always on the move and all have differences in the way they communicate. New technologies have allowed more and more industries to move towards a remote model.

Given the current situation, businesses quickly had to accommodate their employees, across all departments, into a work from home solution, either by providing a laptop to take home or setting up remote desktop to a personal computer.

A number of years ago, working outside of the office was not even possible, just due to the fact that the technology couldn’t support it. With the wide spread of much faster WiFi connections, video conferencing, and even VoIP phone systems, it is much easier to get work done from your home. This is especially helpful in the face of a crisis, like COVID-19, to help protect the public health system but also ensure the continued success of the business.

There are some employers that are hesitant this work remote trend because they feel that their employees will lack productivity, or they simply haven’t invested in the technology to support remote workers. On the other hand, some employers have dabbled into creating a work from home policy or as an exception to certain employees on a special arrangement.

It is predicted that remote work software, like virtual reality conferencing and mobile tools will become the preferred way to communicate. With the current situation, organizations should improve their working remote policies and capabilities, in case this becomes a long term situation.

JENLOR has supported remote clients for a long time and we are here to help you get set up. If you have recently moved employees from the office to home and need an expert to ensure they are secure, call us today at 412-220-9330 ext. 3.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Working from Home

Advantages and Disadvantages of Working from Home

In Pittsburgh, there is an order for all non-life-sustaining businesses to close their offices and work from home to prevent the spread of COVID-19.The number of people infected with the virus continues to grow, and it is creating a crisis in the public health system.

Businesses have advised their employees to work from home. While some are nervous about their productivity decreasing, others see it as a way to boost their productivity while keeping themselves and their colleagues safe!

Advantages of Work from Home

Flexible Schedule: You are working on your own pace on your own time and you can take breaks whenever you want. You can even eat lunch at 10:30 am if you want to! (Just be sure to get your work done!)

Custom Environment: You can blast the volume of your favorite techno band as loud as you want (just don’t blast it at 8:30 am and make your neighbors mad) or you can listen to soft jazz on a low volume to set the tone as you catch up on emails.

What is Business Casual?: Who doesn’t love to be in sweatpants all day? You can lounge in pajamas and sweatshirts while you’re working and no one will ever know (unless you are doing web conferences – then people will definitely notice).

No Distractions: Do you find yourself getting caught up in political or social conversations during the day which distract you from your work? Does your office keep the temperature at a brisk 65 degrees and you can’t focus because you’re shivering? Do you work near a hospital and all you hear are sirens outside your window? Now you won’t have any!

More Time with Family: It’s definitely easier to spend time with loved ones with a flexible schedule – you can get your kids off the school bus or take your parents to and from their doctor’s visits.

While some people see huge advantages in working from home, there can be some disadvantages as well:

Willpower: Getting out of bed and starting your workday at 8:30 am when no one is watching…

No Routine: The schedule you had at the office will likely not match the schedule you have at home. It can be difficult trying to mirror it, especially with other distractions.

Boredom: Normally, you would meet with the gals in the break room for a 3 pm snack session and talk about last night’s Bachelor finale. You miss your work friends!

Distractions: total opposite of the above advantage – your child is home sick and you are finding time to keep up with their medicine, but you have an online webinar at the same exact time…

No second monitor: Most of us don’t have a fancy home set up (unlike many of the IT folks here at JENLOR) and you are in dire need of a second monitor. All of my tabs are essential!

Despite the numerous advantages and disadvantages of working from home, the most important thing to remember during this time is to remain positive and stay home! This crisis will pass as we all do our part.

Here are a Few Serious Work from Home Tips:

Develop benchmarks: while your schedule may not be the same, you can set benchmarks or goals for each day. Hitting the marks will keep you motivated.

Stay connected: consider a virtual 3pm visit with co-workers.

Split the difference: set up a space that is “work”. When you want to work, enter that space and focus. When you’re done with work, “commute” back to your other spaces.

Thanks to everyone who is doing their part, especially to the medical and emergency services community.