SMART Blog

Smart Services has been providing independent agents with proactive, fast, and expert technology services since 1991.

Current Small Business IT Trends

Current Small Business IT Trends

Technology is trending, there’s no doubt about that, but if you are a decision maker at a small business, technology solutions aren’t typically developed for your business in mind. As a result, it can often be difficult for the SMB to get tools that are scalable enough to make sense for them, while also getting powerful options that will actually work to improve some part of the business. This month, we’ll take a look at three trending technologies that small businesses are starting to use regularly. 

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Understanding Disaster Recovery: RTO and RPO

Understanding Disaster Recovery: RTO and RPO

In business, having contingencies for potential problems tends to be advantageous for the business that wants to stave off ruin. When you are dealing with information technology--specifically data--ensuring that it is protected against loss in the face of the litany of threats out there is an undertaking in itself. A disaster recovery strategy is created to govern the processes a business develops to recover to restore operations in a manner that will keep the business in business. This month we take a look at two of the core variables of a disaster recovery strategy: RPO and RTO.

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Ways to Be Smarter About Your Data

Ways to Be Smarter About Your Data

Here’s a fact that you’ve heard before: data loss is a nightmare for your business, and ransomware is the boogeyman. Once your data has been breached, your company’s reputation is damaged in perpetuity. That’s why it is important to confront these fears and start prioritizing data security. 

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Have You Considered the Cloud for Your Business?

Have You Considered the Cloud for Your Business?

If you asked the layman on the street about cloud computing, you may get some surprising answers. Some people may actually believe that the computing resources are stored in the clouds in the sky. Obviously, that isn’t the case, but one thing is certain: not all cloud strategies are understood by the people that use them. This month we will take a look at the different types of cloud computing and how they can actually work for business.

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The Uses of Document Management in Manufacturing

The Uses of Document Management in Manufacturing

Companies are always looking for a better way to manage their data. For the modern manufacturer, there is a lot of data to manage. For some time, the best process was to fill up clanky file cabinets and pay people to oversee the process. This is no longer the case. With much of an organization’s groundwork being done on computers, storing transactional and clerical data on digital systems only makes sense.

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Cybersecurity Awareness for Manufacturing

Cybersecurity Awareness for Manufacturing

Manufacturers are interesting businesses. Not only do they depend on manpower and technology to produce goods, they also rely on IT to power processes, manage their supply chain, and enhance organizational efficiency. With October being Cybersecurity Awareness month, we thought we’d take a look at what a manufacturer’s cybersecurity efforts look like. 

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Line of Business Software Is Improving Business

Line of Business Software Is Improving Business

It’s true that today’s businesses rely on software to help them fill in the gaps. For certain businesses, however, not just any piece of software will do. If your business is reliant on specific software to properly run your business, or if your business functions in an industry rife with regulations, you might be looking for a line of business software.

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Managed Services and Manufacturer’s Information Systems

Managed Services and Manufacturer’s Information Systems

The business that manufactures products is first and foremost interested in efficiency. They need their processes to turn out product, be cost effective, and be repeatable. The aim of IT services for manufacturers is to help facilitate efficient and effective processes starting with procurement of resources through to the support of the goods. 

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Azure Platforms Are Increasingly Providing Value

Azure Platforms Are Increasingly Providing Value

Microsoft is best known for its operating system and productivity software, but these days one part of its company is growing faster than any other: its Azure cloud platform. Let’s take a look at the Azure cloud, some features that businesses use it for, and how it can fit into your IT strategy.

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Employees Are the Key to Productivity

Employees Are the Key to Productivity

Productivity is always going to be a big issue in the workplace. While you want to encourage your employees to get work done, you don’t want to be too overbearing, as it could have the exact opposite of your desired effect. How can you make sure that your employees are staying on-task and focused on their goals? You can take the first step by understanding their motivations and long-term goals.

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Your IT Budget Says a Lot about Your Business

Your IT Budget Says a Lot about Your Business

Budgeting anything can be difficult, but with many business’ organizational reliance on information systems, finding the money to get your IT initiatives off the ground can be a challenge. That hasn’t stopped the IT sector growing fast. In fact, IT spending in business is at its highest levels since 2007. Let’s take a look at how your IT budget actually helps keep your organizational technology initiatives moving forward.

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Locking Down Your Network with Active Directory

Locking Down Your Network with Active Directory

Active Directory is a feature of most Windows Server operating systems. In other words, if your organization has a Windows server, you most likely have Active Directory. Active Directory essentially dishes out access permissions to your users as they are logged in to the network.

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Microsoft Will No Longer Offer Support for Popular OS Platforms

Microsoft Will No Longer Offer Support for Popular OS Platforms

The End of Support for a Windows operating system sends ripples across all industries, as it signals an end of an era. Is your organization one of the many that still cling to Windows 7? If so, you need to take measures now to prepare for its End of Support date. If you fail to do so, you’ll be putting your organization at unnecessary risk.

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Keep Small IT Issues Small

Keep Small IT Issues Small

Your employees appreciate when you give them all the tools they need to complete their day-to-day tasks. If you take the time to provide them with everything they need to do their jobs, then they will, in turn, provide you with a higher rate of productivity and work quality. One way you can make this happen is by giving them access to the technical assistance they need to succeed.

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We Can Put You With the Right Technology

We Can Put You With the Right Technology

Businesses need hardware and software to keep an infrastructure running, but not all organizations specialize in the management and acquisition of these systems. Furthermore, some businesses don’t even know what their specific needs are, which is shocking to think about. We’re here to help you make the best decisions possible with your hardware and software acquisitions.

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Can Technology Work Against a Business?

Can Technology Work Against a Business?

Technology has forever changed the culture of some office environments, for better or worse. While we tend to err on the side of implementing IT as being worth the risk, it’s always best to go into implementing a new technology solution with the thought of not just how it will affect operations, but how it might influence your organization’s company culture. We’ll go into detail about ways that implementing a new IT solution might affect the way your staff interact with each other, as well as what you should look out for when implementing such solutions.

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The Many Threats that Come from Leaning on Technology

The Many Threats that Come from Leaning on Technology

Your business is susceptible to countless threats and vulnerabilities, all of which aim to bring your organization crumbling to the ground. These include all types of technology-related problems that cause downtime and other terrible situations that your business has to overcome. Let’s look at some of the threats you face from day to day, and try to establish an appropriate response to each.

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A Private Cloud Doesn’t Have to Be a Massive Expense

A Private Cloud Doesn’t Have to Be a Massive Expense

Databases are exceptionally useful for allowing access to important data, but they by default expose data to risks depending on how they are stored. If a database is stored in the cloud, for example, it could potentially be exposed to threats that put the future of your business in jeopardy. Compared to the public cloud, a private cloud database can give you more opportunities for security, flexibility, and customization.

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Teamwork Requires Innovative Collaboration Tools

Teamwork Requires Innovative Collaboration Tools

Collaboration is critical to the success of your organization, and in a lot of ways, productivity can’t happen without it. Some modern collaboration tools have improved operations so much that they have completely changed the workplace dynamic, making meetings easier to manage, clients easier to communicate with, and managing in-house processes in a more efficient way. It’s no surprise that the right collaboration tools can help your organization overcome just about anything.

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AI and IT: A Natural Match

AI and IT: A Natural Match

Artificial Intelligence is one technology that garners excitement and fear. People’s imaginations tend to run away with them when they have conversations about AI. Businesses of all types are starting to figure how they can utilize advanced artificial intelligence platforms and machine learning to facilitate better business, but is it working? Let’s take a look at how AI innovation is changing business and see how ready AI is for primetime.

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