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Use It or Lose It: Section 179 Tax Break Adds Up to End-of-Year Technology Savings

Every business needs PCs, servers, printers, network gear, data security hardware or software. Fortunately, Section 179 of the IRS tax code lets small businesses better manage their IT budgets. They can write off the entire cost of computer equipment and off-the-shelf software purchased and put in use before December 31, 2015.

179 Recap
Most people think the Section 179 deduction is some mysterious or complicated tax code. It really isn’t.

Essentially, Section 179 allows small businesses to deduct the full purchase price of qualifying equipment and/or software bought or financed during the current tax year. That means, if you buy or lease a piece of qualifying equipment, you can deduct the full purchase price from your gross income. It’s an incentive created by the U.S. government to encourage businesses to buy equipment and invest in themselves.

Give Reactive the Boot: Get More Value from IT with Lifecycle Management

When it comes to your business’s hardware and software, it pays dividends to be proactive instead of reactive. The end game is to eliminate downtime, unplanned expenses and improve productivity.

However, many businesses squeeze as much life from their technology assets as possible. The downside can be unexpected expenses and headaches as equipment inevitably breaks down and becomes obsolete over time.

Which begs the question: does your business have a plan for lifecycle management?

While many businesses leave their technology asset management to chance, experts say you can get more value from your IT by planning ahead. Here's a look at how.

Don’t Play Roulette with Your Tech!

The dangers of gambling with unsupported & unsecure software
When it comes to continued use of outdated software, are you putting your business in danger of losing vital data and information? Is your business a ticking time bomb ready to explode into a potential abyss of bankruptcy and going “out of business”?
If your business’s operating system software is well known for being out-of-date and unsecure, the answer is unequivocally yes. That circumstance for many has already come and gone in regard to Windows XP (retired April 8, 2014) and Windows Server 2003 (expired July 14, 2015).
If you’re still using either Windows operating system as the foundation for much of your business operations, you might as well spin the wheel and hope for the best. You don’t want to gamble the future of your business on a roulette wheel.
It’s a Costly Risk You Don’t Want to Take

6 Reasons Why Offsite Backup in the Cloud is 100% Critical to Save Your Business

Many times, businesses suffer not only the financial devastations caused by data loss, but they suffer the loss of client confidence. Both are equally devastating and determine whether a business can survive.
The industries that typically suffer the most frequent and expensive breaches are healthcare, financial, pharmaceuticals, transportation and communications. More than one-third of attacks are on businesses with fewer than 250 employees.
There’s a lot at risk when a business fails to implement a successful and thorough offsite data backup plan. Some companies never recover from the blow.
After a major data loss, only 6% of those businesses will survive, studies show. A whopping 51% go out of business within two years, while a sober 43% are gone immediately.

Dial Up VoIP to Drive Down Telecom Costs & Improve Productivity

Let’s face it. As a business owner, you’re always looking for ways to increase operating efficiencies and save money. And, technology is a great tool in which to accomplish those undertakings.

But, how do you go about getting it done?

An increasingly popular and effective approach is implementing Voice-over-Internet Protocol, or more commonly called VoIP. Basically, this system moves your business phone communications to your network connection. Consequently, it allows you and your team to access communication services from anywhere.

Yet, despite its growing use, many business owners are still unsure whether VoIP is the right choice. Does knowing you can reduce your telecom costs by as much as 30% help make the decision easier? Thought so.

Let’s take a look at some primary benefits of VoIP and see how well it fits your business needs.

Email Security & Archiving: Achieving Peace of Mind

Nearly 150 billion emails are sent daily. Close to 50% of business email users believe email reduces the day-to-day need for file storage. Now, you may account for only a small portion of that massive number. But, that said … is your data safe? Is downtime in your future?
Undoubtedly, many of those emails have attachments and sensitive information. Many are vulnerable to security breaches. Indeed, this is highly relevant to you. Especially if you share sensitive information.
Consider:
• 88% of companies experience data loss; email’s the primary culprit
• 78% of employees access personal email from business computers; that’s double what’s authorized
• 68% of organizations currently don’t use a secure email service or email archiving solution

MSPs Lead Businesses through the SaaS Maze

Countless businesses trust Managed Service Providers (MSPs) to deploy, manage and support infrastructure solutions both in the cloud and on-premise. The reason is simple. They are the best at eliminating downtime and providing superb user support.
Savvy businesses also recognize the value engaging their MSP in the search and support for the right applications and Software as a Service (SaaS) solutions for their business. Forrester Research says that IT partners aren’t just critical for the successful deployment of SaaS products, but the management aspect is a real value-add.
SaaS is software running on remote hardware that is owned, managed and delivered via the Internet on a pay-for-use or subscription basis. Without purchasing hardware or software, businesses just connect to the cloud. Deployment takes as little as a day.

Streamline Your Business Processes with Document Management

Any business that uses paper or electronic filing systems can benefit from document management. A quick tour of your offices will reveal how replacing bulky and overflowing paper filing systems with click-of-the-mouse document retrieval could revolutionize your day-to-day operations. Let's have a look at some of the advantages.
What Can Document Management Do For Your Organization?
Implementing new office technology can keep even the bravest among us up all night. Not to worry. Document management with The OTG will make life easier, streamlining your paper chase into an easy-to-use retrieval system your team will appreciate. Here's how:

Questions to Ask About Cloud Security Before Making the Move

The cloud. A wondrous advancement in document sharing and management. However, with all of the press on large corporation having catastrophic data breaches, small and medium size businesses have to stop and ponder the risks associated with moving their data to the cloud.
Is the Cloud Safe?
The cloud is no more or less safe than an on-site server. Last year(February 2014) there was a media frenzy concerning the National Security Agency's statement that they can get into any network, be it a cloud or physical server.
Cloud Storage is just as safe as on-site servers. Implementing certain security precautions are still essential for ensuring your data is safe from everyday hackers.
What are the Risks with Moving Data to the Cloud?

Mishicot School District Implements a Managed I.T. Services Strategy

Technology Concept Imagery with woman manipulating AR interface.

Supporting the technology needs of over 850 students and their teachers can be a challenge. Nobody knows this better than Eric Nelson of the Mishicot School District (www.mishicot.k12.wi.us). Eric functions as both the elementary principal and the technology coordinator for the rural school district. Technology support issues began to consume more of his time, taking the focus away from developing a technology strategy for the district. Challenges
I.T. Staff Continuity Each year the school would hire a technology intern to manage the daily technology support in the district.

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