Why the Agile Approach is the Best Way to Manage Your Next IT Project

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 9/30/14 8:00 AM

Agile approach

The digital world has always benefited from innovation. The agile methodology to IT management is just one of the latest examples in this trend. For many pundits, this approach promises to revolutionize the way IT projects are executed. The agile methodology began in the software development field in the late 1990s and early 2000s. At the time, developers typically created a finished software product in one go, and then fixed bugs as they were discovered.

Agile development, on the other hand, emphasized rapid incremental product creation. This involved dividing projects into components, or "sprints,” each of which could be finished quickly. Individual sprints were considered finished products in their own right. As a result, software could be ready for release much quicker. These products often had fewer bugs and new features added regularly after launch. In IT management, the agile methodology functions very similarly. Large technology projects are broken down to their base components. Each component is a finished product on its own, but also fits into the greater whole. While this may seem more like a technical distinction than a major change, it actually has significant implications for managing IT projects.

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Topics: Outsourced IT, Technical Project

6 Features That Make an MSP Change Worthwhile

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 9/23/14 8:00 AM

Change MSP

For many small and mid-sized companies, a partnership with a managed service provider (MSP) can seem like a freight train: inevitable, too big to divert, and disastrous if it gets derailed. This "too big to budge" mindset forces many companies into maintaining vendor relationships that have either stopped being beneficial or were not that beneficial to begin with. Switching to a different MSP can seem like a massive proposition. However, these six features can help a company's IT infrastructure enough to offset any costs that come along with the switch.

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Topics: Managed Services, Outsourced IT

Is Wearable Technology Good for Business?

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 9/16/14 8:00 AM

Wearable technology

Several leading tech companies have been touting wearable technology for quite some time. According to them, these devices are the way of the future. While that may be the case, the jury is still out when it comes to the present, as many companies are trying to figure out if wearable tech is a worthwhile investment. For them, the question is all about determining if these devices are good for business or just another passing fad.

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Topics: Innovation

Top 5 Ways to Use Technology to Train Employees

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 9/9/14 8:00 AM

Training with technology

Training employees, while necessary and beneficial, can be a huge financial burden on a company. The cost of training coupled with the time it takes to bring a new employee up to speed on company software and other procedures, positions finding ways to make training more time and cost effective as a top priority. New technologies have been creating efficiencies in human resources and employee training for the last few years and can help your business streamline the employee training process. Here are five ways to use technology to make training more effective and efficient.

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Topics: Tech Tips, Innovation

5 Benefits of Deploying a Hybrid Cloud

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 9/2/14 8:00 AM

Hybrid cloud

With everyone moving to the cloud, company data centers seem to be a way of the past. But with many cloud options to choose from, how do you figure out which one is best suited for your business? For many companies, the answer could be a hybrid cloud approach. This system combines the flexibility of a public cloud infrastructure with the security settings of private cloud solutions. Here are five reasons why a hybrid cloud is probably right for your business.  

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Topics: Cloud

4 Top Benefits of Outsourcing your Help Desk

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 8/26/14 8:00 AM

Help Desk Tickets

Organizations that field help desk or customer service requests are painfully aware of the huge drain it can have on the operational budget. Building an in-house help desk team requires a large amount of overhead and resources that can take away from the bulk of your company's revenue-generating operations. A better option for many small to mid-sized companies is to outsource their help desk operations to a managed services provider (MSP) that is already set up to handle large-volume calls and questions related to your company's technology or services. Here are four benefits that make outsourcing your help desk a viable option to consider.

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Topics: Outsourced IT, Service Desk/Help Desk

4 Benefits of Switching to a Virtual Server

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 8/19/14 8:00 AM

Virtual server cost savings

Running a business server can get expensive. Between maintenance, equipment, housing, and security, the costs add up very quickly. In fact, for most businesses that don't have very specific and specialized server needs, running a server in-house is a gross inefficiency. Even co-location, the practice of housing a server at a communal space while paying for the equipment and maintenance yourself, is usually unnecessary for most small and mid-size companies. An alternative that makes much more sense, both financially and practically, is a virtual server.

In a virtual server environment, your company's server exists as a virtual machine running on a shared server operated by a hosting company or managed service provider. Because your server shares physical space and computing resources with others, costs to individual servers remain low, and maintenance is split between everyone on the server and figured into the monthly costs up front. So, what are the benefits of switching? Here are the top four.

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Topics: Cloud, Virtualization

Should Your Small Business Choose a Larger MSP?

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 8/12/14 8:00 AM

Should you choose a large MSP?Small businesses often feel that they need to look for vendors that are similar in size to them. When many small business owners go shopping for a managed service provider, they often write off large companies immediately. This usually comes with many justifications: "We can't afford them anyway", or "They won't care about a business as small as mine", or even "They don't understand the needs of a small business." While we can't speak about other fields, in the MSP arena nothing could be further from the truth.

There are many good reasons to go with a smaller provider for your managed service needs; however, most of them are just as true at large MSPs. In fact, there are a lot more advantages to going with a larger MSP than a smaller one. Not only will you get a much higher level of service with a larger MSP, you will also get more personal and individualized service.

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Topics: Managed Services, Outsourced IT

How to Create an IT Budget

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 8/5/14 8:00 AM

How to Create an IT BudgetCreating and building out an IT budget can present a dilemma for many CEOs and CFOs: should you set a budget first and then work within it? Should you determine your needs and build a budget around that? What's a good estimate for how large an IT budget should be as a percentage of revenue? Having a CIO or Director of IT can help the process move along much more smoothly, but for companies who haven't filled those positions, the budgeting process can seem complicated and risky. In this article, we'll help you understand the intricacies of building out a technology budget, and the steps you should take to make sure that you and your employees have the tools to do your jobs well without breaking the bank.

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Topics: How-To, IT Spend

5 Ways a vCIO Can Make Your Company More Efficient

Posted by Dataprise Digest - Weekly Tech Insight on 7/29/14 8:00 AM

vCIO working efficentlyThe push to outsource IT infrastructure from companies has often been characterized in terms of technicians and engineers, workstations and servers. More recently, however, the push for a more efficient and proactive IT management paradigm has led many companies, especially small and mid-sized ones, to consider outsourcing their technology needs all the way up to the top. This has led to the creation of the vCIO, or virtual Chief Information Officer. This position helps companies that can't necessarily afford another full-time C-level executive be able to compete on an equal playing field with much larger organizations. Here are five benefits of hiring a vCIO for your business:

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Topics: Managed Services, Outsourced IT

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