Clear the Way to Your Business with Unified Communications

Communication solutions have one basic function: removing obstacles between you and your customers. A basic technology like the telephone allows people to communicate without having to be face to face, removing the obstacle of distance. Today, though, there are many different ways that people communicate (phone, instant messaging, voicemail, eFax, email, etc.); the various systems and devices used to deliver these communications can become an obstacle.

A unified communications system is vital to ensure easy and open communication between customers, employees, and vendors. Thanks to advances in cloud computing, data delivery, and software, the barriers between you and your customers can be removed.

Phone and Data Services

Business owners who want to improve their communication capabilities have a number of different voice and data services available. Many of these services utilize the Voice over IP (VoIP), which is platform that uses Internet Protocol (IP) to deliver phone calls and other media. VoIP business solutions are the preferred platform for many companies today and can also be paired with data services to give your business a truly unified communication system.

Magnavoip

– For small to medium-sized businesses, Data102’s Magnavoip is our preferred hosted handset  solution for small and medium-sized businesses. Magnavoip provides class 5 features like voicemail, eFax, hold queues, and more.

Microsoft Lync

– The most feature-rich phone and data services platform available today, Microsoft Lync connects you and your customers through VoIP, video conferencing, instant messaging, shared whiteboards, remote screen management, and more.

Cisco Call Manager Express

– This VoIP solution has many of the same features as Microsoft Lync but is better suited for larger businesses with up to 250 employees.

Each of these unified communication solutions will allow you to connect with your customers more efficiently, improving your customer service and reputation, which will ultimately affect your bottom line.

Colorado Springs Voice Solutions

Simpleworks is Colorado Springs’ leading IT and voice solutions company. Our IT support staff specializes in state-of-the-art voice and unified communication systems to serve businesses of all sizes. Contact us today to see what voice and data services will work best for you and your customers.

Most business owners wouldn’t imagine operating without an insurance policy to cover break-ins, accidents, fires, and other unforeseeable disasters. But many businesses fail to appreciate the need to insure their precious online property—their data.

A catastrophic loss of data can not only disrupt normal business operations; it can actually have an adverse effect on your bottom line, customer service, and reputation. Even if you have solid IT infrastructure and services in place, data loss can happen for any number of reasons. You need a disaster recovery plan in place in case of an emergency. Simpleworks can help.

Colorado Springs Data Disaster Recovery Solutions

With BDR backups, Simpleworks offers a comprehensive disaster recovery service. Here are some of the features:

  • Hybrid cloud backups. The physical BDR device will back up your data automatically as frequently as every 5 minutes and can be easily retrieved. In addition to the physical copy, your data can be backed up off-site on a secured BDR server. This level of redundancy issues that none of your data will ever be permanently lost.
  • Instant virtualization. Your backup data can be virtualized almost instantaneously from either the physical device or the cloud to replicate the failing server. This will keep your business operating while the problem is addressed.
  • Backup Insights.  This service allows us to locate and retrieve deleted files that occur between backups. This kind of retrieval can be invaluable for small scale data loss from misclicks or carelessness.

BDR backup services are also encrypted and comply with current HIPPA standards.

Colorado Springs Data Recovery

At Simpleworks, we have heard a lot of horror stories about catastrophic data loss. As Colorado Springs’ leading IT support and disaster recovery solution, we utilize BDR backups to ensure the safety of our customers’ vital data. This disaster recovery plan provides the protection and redundancy that your business needs.

Don’t put your business at risk. Insure your data with BDR backups from Simpleworks today.

Spam has been an unavoidable nuisance as long as there has been email. It’s not hard to see why: spammers can send out millions of emails for free. Even if only 1 person in 1,000 buys the product, spam is generating hundreds or even thousands of additional sales.

As email clients have matured, they’ve gotten better at detecting spam and discarding it before it clutters your inbox. Despite the advances, spammers are constantly finding new ways of working their ads into unsuspecting email accounts. Many times these emails are soliciting scams or contain links that can automatically download nasty viruses that can seriously damage your computer and those in your contact list. Spam is not completely unavoidable, though. Simpleworks offers spam solutions that work!

Getting Rid of Spam with DirectMX

DirectMX is one of the best spam solutions on the market today. DirectMX is an email filtering solution that protects your computer or network from receiving—or even sending—spam. It uses heuristics (complex algorithms and principles) to filter incoming emails. These various metrics generate a spam score that is compared to a table to determine if the incoming email is spam or not. DirectMX can be set to either quarantine or reject the incoming spam.

It’s also important to make sure that your network is not sending spam. We’ve all gotten odd emails from people we know that just contain a strange, anonymous link. DirectMX can monitor sent emails to ensure that email accounts in the network have not been hijacked. If email clients in your network are continually sending spam, the server reputation will be affected, which could cause your regular outgoing mail to be rejected by other email clients. Of course, the best way to ensure you’re clients aren’t spamming their contact list is by blocking the virus spam before it ever gets in.

Spam Solutions that Work from Simpleworks

Simpleworks is southern Colorado’s leading IT support company. We specialize in setting up networks with DirectMX. Even if you don’t have hosted email service with us, we can protect you with the power of DirectMX. Give us a call today if you are being relentlessly spammed and hacked! You don’t have to live with the aggravation and lost productivity.

The Internet is certainly faster today than ever before. If you were around during the early days of dial-up, you probably remember waiting minutes for a single web page to load. But today, even our smartphones generally connect to the Internet and download content almost instantaneously. Speed has come to be expected.

Because of this, many business owners feel that they need the fastest Internet speed possible to serve their customers and employees. While fast Internet speed for business is needed generally for some tasks, quality can be just as, if not more, important for others.

Quality vs. Quantity

There are basically two classes of Internet service: “best effort” and “enterprise.” “Best effort” services are what you probably have in your home: Comcast, CenturyLink, or some other cable or DSL provider. These Internet services can be quite fast, but their speed depends on how many users are on a trunkline at a given time. While delivering a faster speed at times, they are not completely reliable.

But speed isn’t everything. “Enterprise” class services are higher quality Internet solutions, meaning they are much more reliable. The low latency guaranteed by enterprise Internet solutions is vital for online phone services like Voice over IP (VoIP), site-to-site tunnels (connections between multiple locations in a given area), and connections to a corporate office. While the fastest Internet connection possible is ideal for web browsing and email, a reliable, low-latency service is much better for a business’s vital communication channels.

Colorado Springs Internet Solutions from Simpleworks

The IT professionals at Simpleworks in Colorado Springs work with each business individually to implement a cost-effective Internet solution to address its specific needs. Our Colorado Springs Internet solutions are usually a hybrid of a regular cable service—like Comcast—and a T1 line for redundancy and quality. This ensures that your day-to-day operations run smoothly and that your essential communication channels and data are never compromised. Give us a call today to see what solution would work best for your needs.

 

If your business is like most, you can’t function without your phones. But it’s not just phone service that you need: voicemail, transferring, eFax, hold queues, and other features may be necessary for you to conduct business efficiently and productively. Then there’s the cost of these features to consider. Thanks to advances in digital technology, you have a range of different business communication solutions to fit your needs, your size, and your budget.

Common Business Phone Problems

Phone problems can be debilitating and costly. But it’s not only the loss of service that’s problematic—unreliable voicemail, malfunctioning hold queues, or connectivity issues could all be trying your customers’ patience and reducing your revenue. In addition, your internal communication could be suffering as more and more employees work remotely or travel for business. Plus, the phone service you have now could be costing you more than it needs to. And the actual hardware you’re using may be failing or out-of-date.

Business Communication Solutions

The technology available today has more features and reliability than ever before. Your communication system begins with the hardware: handsets, headsets, conference phones, mobile devices, etc. Then there are a number of different unified communication solutions to fit your needs and budget:

  • Hosted PBX: A simple, cost-efficient solution for small businesses with less than 50 users. We will install the system on a virtual private server (VPS), which can be managed by your internal IT team or Simpleworks.
  • Magnavoip: Our preferred hosted handset solution. Magnavoip is a feature-rich, cost-effective service for up to 500 users.
  • Voice over IP (VoIP) with Cisco Call Manager Express: A great solution for business with 250 users or less. Cisco’s VoIP system is affordable, customizable, scalable, and simple.
  • Microsoft Lync: The most comprehensive unified communication system on the market. Microsoft Lync is VoIP enabled and also provides instant messaging, video calling, screen sharing, and much more. It is cutting edge, versatile, and dependable.

Simpleworks Has You Covered

Simpleworks, a communication solution company, specializes in fixing communication problems so you can focus on your customers, not troubleshooting technical issues. We sell, install, and manage phone systems as well as unified communications services like VoIP, Magnavoip, and Microsoft Link. Give your local Colorado Springs IT and communication support team a call, and we’ll find a solution that fits your needs and your budget.

 

Nearly every business today relies heavily on information technology. Computers, Internet service, servers, phone systems, email, data storage, and calendars are all necessary for most businesses, large or small. We generally don’t realize how much we rely on our IT, in fact, until something goes wrong. But a disruption to any IT system can mean a serious hit to productivity, and even lost profits. Unfortunately, no matter how many precautions are put into place, IT systems will malfunction from time to time. These disruptions strike without warning at any time, day or night.

Simpleworks understands how vital it is that companies stay up and running, which is why we offer a 24/7 IT support service. Whether you have a system-wide crash on a large network or trouble with an individual computer, we have an IT specialist standing by to assist.

Superior 24/7 IT Support

Simpleworks offers a wide range of troubleshooting and repair services 24 hours a day. We have expertise with both Macs and Windows-based PCs, hardware and software issues, as well as connectivity and communications problems.

Beyond their expertise, our Colorado Springs computer support team is efficient, friendly, and professional. We understand how vital it is to keep our clients’ IT systems fully functional, so we tackle every problem as if it was our own—promptly and efficiently. This dedication to the needs of our customers is why we are the most trusted IT support company in Colorado Springs.

How Our 24/7 IT Support Service Works

All you need to do is submit a ticket to our 24/7 computer support team at support@simpleworksit.com or through our automated phone system. You will then receive a response within one hour. Our technician will diagnose the problem and may be able to assist remotely. If not, we will come to you. If you are a larger company, you may want to set up a contract with us that includes 24/7 computer support. If not, we offer an hourly rate to cover your specific emergency.

Don’t Let Your IT Down!

Don’t spin your wheels trying to troubleshoot a problem yourself or let your IT problems lead to a loss of productivity or profits. Give the pros at Simpleworks a call today so we can get your back up and running!

 

Growing Colorado Springs IT Support Company Keeps Up with Demand

PRESS RELEASE: We are excited to announce that our stunning, fully-responsive, user-friendly website is now live! New and existing customers will find the site easy to navigate, informative, and representative of the full scope of services we offer. The new site also features live chat, which will allow inquiring visitors to receive additional information about our IT solutions instantly. Our existing customers now have a client portal to manage their accounts, submit tickets, etc.

This redesign became necessary because of the tremendous growth we’ve experienced over the last several years. “We simply outgrew our last site,” said Josh Brambila, General Manager at Simpleworks. “We needed a revamped web presence to better represent the full range of services we offer and to give us even better contact with our customers. We also wanted a fresh look and feel for the site to reflect the professionalism, expertise, and progress that defines what we do.”

Thanks to Power Plant Media, a web design company in Colorado Springs, the new site meets all of our needs. The knowledgeable and talented design team at Power Plant exceeded our expectations. We are confident that visitors, too, will appreciate the attractive design and new features which will help us serve them even better.

Simpleworks’ Comprehensive IT Solutions

Simpleworks has certified, experienced technicians who can install, set up, manage, and troubleshoot any IT service needed by a business or individual. Thanks to our loyal customer base, we have now expanded our services to include Voice over IP (VoIP), etc. in addition to the many other solutions we offer:

  • Network management
  • Business Internet
  • Phone and unified communications
  • Backups and disaster recovery
  • Computer support and repair
  • Virtualization and cloud solutions
  • Managed email services
  • Security and compliance
  • Datacenter services
  • Server support
  • Desktop support

… and more!  Check out the new website for more information about each of these services.

About Simpleworks

Simpleworks is the leading IT support solution for small and medium-sized businesses and residential customers in Southern Colorado. Regardless of the IT needs—whether simple or complicated, large or small—our specialists can build and manage your entire network. While we do have a brick-and-mortar location, there’s no need for you to bring your equipment to us. We will come to you, and if you have an emergency, we are on call, ready to help.

VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol. Essentially what it does is convert audio phone signals that are normally broadcast in analog format to digital data, which can then be sent over the Internet. What this means is that businesses can use their Internet connection to make free phone calls. Since long-distance and international calls can be cripplingly expensive with standard phone service, a VoIP and Voice solution can save a business a lot of money and help them reach out to a larger global market without cutting too deeply into their budget.

Some companies may be skeptical about using VoIP, however, afraid that calls may be unclear or frequently dropped. The truth is, though, you are probably already using VoIP whenever you make long distance phone calls; more and more phone companies are using this protocol to reduce bandwidth and streamline their network. In fact, according to a study done by Juniper Research, one billion people will be using VoIP by 2017 and all the leading VoIP carriers are “becoming increasingly sophisticated in their service offerings.”

Here is how the system works. A business phone provider will install an Internet connection via Ethernet cable, which guarantees fast Internet speeds and better performance. This prevents calls from being dropped or losing sound quality. Next, a voice service is enabled by the business phone provider using routing technology so that calls can be placed cheaply (or free, in some cases)—both across the country and around the world. Most providers can actually use a company’s existing phone connection in order to set up the VoIP system. Any headsets and microphones needed are usually included in the provider’s installation services if the company does not already have them or want to purchase them separately.

Once the system is installed, businesses are able to access a wide range of call solutions including:

  • two- and three-way call waiting
  • direct inward dial
  • call transfers
  • hold music
  • attaching messages to emails
  • listening to voicemails over the Internet.

Despite all of these benefits, VoIP services are viable and reasonably priced, making them an asset to any company, large or small.

VoIP and Voice solutions might sound complicated on the surface, but they are actually incredibly user-friendly resources and provide a wide range of useful services. In today’s competitive market, the ability to communicate effectively with clients—without paying a fortune—can give a business the edge it needs to get ahead. Don’t get left behind. Let Simpleworks help you to set up your VoIP system today.

If you are a typical customer, you have no doubt had some less than pleasant experiences with tech support at some point—or at all points. If you can find a number to call, you will probably have to traverse your way through a maze of automated options (none of which ever seem to address the specific problem). If you can find your way to a human being, there are generally five types of techs you will encounter:

1. The Robot: The robot reads to you from a script that may or may not apply to what you’re asking. It will probably make you answer a series of unrelated questions before finding a script that seems appropriate. Whatever you do, don’t ask the robot how its day is going (there isn’t a script for that question, so the robot will become disoriented).

2. The Kindergarten Teacher: The Kindergarten Teacher will talk to you in a soft, slow voice and insist that your modem is not plugged in correctly or needs to be restarted. After assuring the Kindergarten Teacher that you’ve already checked that, he or she will ask you if your monitor is plugged in. This can go on for hours and will leave you feeling like a child, but the problem still won’t be fixed.

3. The Drive-Thru Voice: The Drive-Thru Voice is saying something to you, but you have no idea what it is. Every time you try to clarify, the voice on the other end asks you to repeat it or spell it out, but you can’t be sure. After 10 minutes, you may have finally been able to explain the problem, but right about then you’ll get disconnected.

4. The Slacker: The Slacker will not know how to fix your issue and will seem quite uninterested in finding out. The Slacker will sound irritated that you interrupted his or her game of minesweeper and is perfectly content leaving you with a “You’ll need to bring it in” instead of searching for a solution. One positive, though, is that the Slacker may transfer you to the Wizard.

5. The Wizard: The Wizard gets on the phone and immediately instills confidence. The Wizard knows everything about your computer, how to explain every step, and exactly what the problem is. He is the IT professional you’ve been searching for your whole life. Make sure to keep him or her on the line as long as possible, though, because once you hang up, you may never get the Wizard again.

Now, if you’re just trying to get your tablet to unfreeze, this isn’t much more than a hassle. If you are a business, though, proactive tech support can mean the difference between profits and deficits. Nearly every business serves its customers with some kind of technology, and technical difficulties are guaranteed to arise from time to time. Without proactiveengaged, and skilled IT specialists backing you up, your company will lose money and productivity—even customers.

But you don’t just want to make sure that you get the Wizard every time you call tech support; you want the Wizard to call you before a problem even happens! A proactive IT support company will go beyond troubleshooting by:

  • Performing routine maintenance
  • Looking at statistics and trends to predict and prevent future technical problems
  • Scheduling service outages in advance for times when user requirements will be low instead of inconveniencing customers and employees with lengthy, unscheduled outages that occur due to neglect or lack of foresight.

While many IT support companies may have more wizards than slackers, they often only help their customers once a problem arises. A company like Simpleworks, on the other hand, provides proactive customer service—not just when everyone in the office suddenly can’t get online—but by helping businesses avoid service outages and other inconvenient IT problems in the first place.

When it comes time for your business to select an IT solutions company, choosing a proactive IT support company will help you to conserve precious resources while at the same time providing top-notch customer service. By properly maintaining a company’s infrastructure, proactive support will help your company save money and provide better customer service. After all, happy customers lead to profitable businesses.

So if you’re tired of going through all those other slacking IT companies in town, don’t get frustrated anymore: give the awesome guys at Simpleworks a call today! They are there to help you at any time of day and are on their toes, ready to inform you of an issue before you may even know about it. Contact them now!

“You wouldn’t light money on fire right? You’re not crazy. So why do you burn time by using your mouse and menus? I’m going to teach you the 15 best keyboard shortcuts ever, and change your life. Let’s take control!

The CTRL key in Windows. Mac users, you ceded all control to Apple but you can still take command. Just use the command key instead of the CTRL key for all of these. Here we go.

The biggest waste of time I see is cutting and pasting. Look at this poor fellow toiling away in the menu. He’s shortening his life! Buddy check this out:

CTRL-C copies highlighted text
CTRL-X cuts highlighted text
CTRL-V pastes highlighted text

You can thank me later.

Here’s some more.

Need to just select everything in sight for one of those cut-and-paste maneuvers?

CTRL-A selects all.

Need help finding what you need to highlight?

CTRL-F works in most programs to search for text.

Also handy are:

CTRL-Z to undo any action.
CTRL-Y to redo it when you realize you meant it after all.

As an alternative to all this control, use ALT-TAB to switch quickly between programs. Mac users can keep control by using COMMAND-TAB for the same thing.

Need to show the desktop fast? My favorite shortcut of all time to the rescue, Windows-D! Mac users, press F11, oddly, to do the same thing.

Now lets speed up your browsing. The following shortcuts work in Firefox in both Mac and Windows AND in Internet Explorer.

F6 highlights the address bar. No more futzing around with the mouse when you need to type in a Web address.

CTRL-ENTER completes an address in the address bar by automatically adding the .com to the end.

When in a Web page, the arrow buttons scroll the text up and down one line at a time.

Page up and Page down will scroll whole “pages” (really big chunks of text in a Web page).

Need to reload the page? Just press F5.

CTRL-T opens a new tab. Of course you have to do it COMMAND-T in OS X.

And finally here’s one that just doesn’t work on a Mac but is good for both IE and Firefox on Windows. Press F11 to make the browser full screen. Great for presentations!

You will now have more time to spend writing that novel, learning how to paint, or just to stare dreamily at that picture of Brian Tong. Or whatever it is that you do.

 

You wouldn’t light money on fire right? You’re not crazy. So why do you burn time by using your mouse and menus? I’m going to teach you the 15 best keyboard shortcuts ever, and change your life. Let’s take control!

 

The CTRL key in Windows. Mac users, you ceded all control to Apple but you can still take command. Just use the command key instead of the CTRL key for all of these. Here we go.

The biggest waste of time I see is cutting and pasting. Look at this poor fellow toiling away in the menu. He’s shortening his life! Buddy check this out:

CTRL-C copies highlighted text
CTRL-X cuts highlighted text
CTRL-V pastes highlighted text

You can thank me later.

Here’s some more.

Need to just select everything in sight for one of those cut-and-paste maneuvers?

CTRL-A selects all.

Need help finding what you need to highlight?

CTRL-F works in most programs to search for text.

Also handy are:

CTRL-Z to undo any action.
CTRL-Y to redo it when you realize you meant it after all.

As an alternative to all this control, use ALT-TAB to switch quickly between programs. Mac users can keep control by using COMMAND-TAB for the same thing.

Need to show the desktop fast? My favorite shortcut of all time to the rescue, Windows-D! Mac users, press F11, oddly, to do the same thing.

Now lets speed up your browsing. The following shortcuts work in Firefox in both Mac and Windows AND in Internet Explorer.

F6 highlights the address bar. No more futzing around with the mouse when you need to type in a Web address.

CTRL-ENTER completes an address in the address bar by automatically adding the .com to the end.

When in a Web page, the arrow buttons scroll the text up and down one line at a time.

Page up and Page down will scroll whole “pages” (really big chunks of text in a Web page).

Need to reload the page? Just press F5.

CTRL-T opens a new tab. Of course you have to do it COMMAND-T in OS X.

And finally here’s one that just doesn’t work on a Mac but is good for both IE and Firefox on Windows. Press F11 to make the browser full screen. Great for presentations!

You will now have more time to spend writing that novel, learning how to paint, or just to stare dreamily at that picture of Brian Tong. Or whatever it is that you do.”

 

See the original article here: http://cnettv.cnet.com/8301-13415_53-10417893-11.html