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Saturday, May 29, 2010

Outsourcing IT Support Services

By Kelly M Jones

With the automation of activities in work places there has been a need of providers of IT support for various reasons. There are a lot of IT support service providers who specialize in both start up companies and large enterprises. They are involved in effectively managing IT services and ensuring that clients work efficiently with available resources.

Some companies may decide to outsource these services as they are cheaper and provide more time for them to concentrate on other operational issues. Most of these IT support service providers offer services that can be expected of any internal IT department. There are those that offer variety of packages that can be customized according to the unique needs and requirement of the clients. They work with the clients by indicating areas that need improvement as well as offer different IT support solutions for them.

Most of the services provided range from

* computer support
* IT consulting
* Data back up
* Hosting services
* Application development
* in house IT support
* On site IT support

Depending on your company's needs, you have to select the one that best caters for all of hem. There are those that operate 24-hours daily thus they are easily available. Consider the ones that offer reliability and high quality. Customer service is also very important while you look for an IT support service provider. They have to be knowledgeable and friendly so as to help you tackle with all tour it issues with efficiency. Ensure that they also have open communication lines at all times in terms of emails, phone calls and others to enable you get to them with ease.

Outsourcing IT services is beneficial for the company as it reduces the cost of it support as well as provide time for them to concentrate on other business operations. Select the company that will be your IT partner and package that fits your needs and start enjoying the benefits.

For more information, visit The offer information on IT Support London, as well as Business IT Support.

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Top Questions Asked by Prospective Franchisors

By Peter C King

Franchising is a long term relationship between the prospective purchaser of the franchise ("franchisee") and the business offering the franchise ("franchisor"). Businesses may look at becoming a franchisor after establishing a successful business that can be replicated in other geographic areas. One advantage of franchising is that the business can expand more quickly, however, utilizing the franchise system does result in control being lost by the business owner.

Question 1: What is the first step to franchising my business?
The most important issue in franchising is creating a business with internal procedures and processes that can be replicated in other geographic areas giving prospective franchisees incentive to purchase your franchise. The franchisor's job is to provide a turn-key operation that can be replicated all over the country and the world. There are typically two items that the franchisor grants to the franchisee, trademark rights and a prescribed marketing plan or way to run the business. The franchisee then pays a franchise fee for the right to participate in the enterprise and pays royalties to the franchisor for future sales.

Question 2: How do I protect my trademarks?
It is important that you have strong trademarks for your business which can be licensed to your franchisees. Trademark licensing is one of the most important aspects to franchising your business. The best way to protect your trademarks is to register them with the United Stated Patent and Trademark Office. This allows a presumption of validity, ownership and validity of the mark. After five years the added protection of incontestability is available as well. By registering the trademark constructive notice is given allowing the trademark owner preemptive nationwide superior rights even if the mark is not used in that geographic area. There is also state registration and common law trademark rights that offer less protection. These typically offer little value.

Question 3: How do I choose a trademark?
The goal is to select a strong trademark. The franchisor wants the trademark to be distinctive, unique and ultimately to become well known. This may require your business to select a new name. It is best to avoid descriptive terms which describe the product because they are not distinctive and do not offer much protection. Geographic names are also weak especially if the product originates from the region (i.e. Colombian coffee, Lancaster County Amish buggies, Idaho potatoes). Surnames are difficult as well because often the name is used somewhere else in the United States and limited protection is available. The best trademarks are often suggestive which suggest a link to the goods or services. An example would be Greyhound for bus services since people equate greyhounds as fast and therefore think the bus service travels as fast as a greyhound dog. Jaguar and Mustang for cars are similar examples of suggestive trademarks.

Question 4: I have a great concept can I start the franchise process?
Many times individuals will have an idea and want to get started franchising. This does not work. You need to have a business with at least a six month track record. The business has to be profitable and should be a turn-key operation.

Question 5: What type of capital is involved to become a franchisor?
You should definitely have at least $100,000 to $150,000 in capital to invest in the franchise program. This is often a difficult amount of money to raise because banks are cautious to invest in this type of venture and venture capitalists demand significant amounts of equity for the money. The best way to raise the money is often through family, a second mortgage on your home or from the existing business.

Question 6: Will I continue to run my business as usual after I start franchising?
No, after you undertake the franchising process your job will be to sell units and support the new franchises. Franchising is a different business from the one you currently operate. It is important to be clear that if you cannot put the time in to develop the new franchise you would be best to set aside the idea. Family factors should also be considered as well.

Question 7: What type of advisors are necessary for this process?
It is important to hire an experienced franchising consulting company to produce an operations manual, brochure, and website. Additionally, an accounting firm that works with franchises is invaluable since the financial disclosure document (FDD) requires an audited financial statement which must be updated annually. An attorney is integral to the process as well to create the FDD. This document will be given to prospective franchisees and gets filed in a number of states prior to selling the franchises in those states. The attorney will also draft the franchise agreement and other legal documents which define the franchisor's rights in regard to the franchisees.

Question 8: What are some other alternatives?
If your business does not have a track record of at least 6 months, or you do not have the time or resources available it is best to continue to run your business and revisit the franchising opportunity at some point in the future. If you are not completely committed you will likely waste time, energy and resources.

For more information on becoming a franchisor please contact Peter King, HAUSWIESNER KING LLP, 8300 Greensboro Drive, Suite 990 McLean, VA 22102 (703) 992-6790 or visit our website at

*This article has been prepared by HAUSWIESNER KING LLP for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Readers should seek legal advice from a licensed attorney in their state of residence.

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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Conference Phones - Enhancing Interpersonal Communication and Strengthening Business

By Boogie Warwick

For a business to thrive, it needs internal and external communication to handle marketing and branding strategies, ways to improve customer relations, researching on trends of consumer behavior, employee engagement, and other topics and issues that need to be dealt with to keep abreast with the times. Communication - always being a two-way process where there is an exchange and progression of thoughts, feelings, or ideas - needs to be delivered with good quality. This is why business transactions are made on a personal level by meeting in person with others on a set location that is more than often inconvenient for one or both parties. Conference phones are the best collaborating tools that maintain and promote effective business communications without having to risk inconvenience.

Both internal and external communication are essential in keeping a business in the game, with the former focusing on relationships within the business, and the latter focusing on outward relationships with business partners and customers. Effective internal business communications keep a business intact through the avoidance of fostering distrust or hostility among employees, and the smooth and thorough development of strategies to ensure the company's profit and that business is as usual, or more so, better. External communication is even more important, because it is a way of establishing the reputation of the business to prospect partners and customers. Polycom, known worldwide for being ahead in developing systems for unified communication and collaboration, brings simple conferencing and videoconferencing technologies to ensure productive dispatches in businesses, whether internally or externally.

Polycom conference phones, depending on the model and technology utilized, may be capable of conference calls or videoconferencing, and could cater to conference rooms that are able to handle up to six, sixteen, or thirty-two people. Conference calls allow the called party to participate during the call, or may be set up to only allow the called party to only listen to the call. Videoconferencing, meanwhile, allows two ore more locations to communicate on live, two-way video and audio transmissions.

Polycom's small conference phones like the VoiceStation 300 is perfect for those working from an office desk and is also designed for a small conference room that can accommodate six people within two-meter range. The SoundStation2, another model, is fit for small to medium conference rooms that could seat up to sixteen people. Yet another model is the SoundStation VTX 100, has an unparalleled room coverage of up to thirty-two people. All these models have advanced noise-reduction and a clear 360-degree room coverage, with distances ranging from two to three meters. Polycom also has different wireless conference phone units for easier transfer of conferences from one room to another, and for better room coverage. All these conference phones are perfect for inter-departmental meetings within a company without having to congest in one conference room, and instead they can communicate from various floors or locations within their building.

Videoconferencing, which makes use of telepresence, is a better technology than auditory communication that conference phones are limited to. Telepresence makes a person or a group of people feel as if they were present at a location other than their true location. This remarkable advancement allows users to see others' positions, actions, and gestures, and at the same time clearly hear their voices and tones in accord with these movements. HDX 9000 is one of Polycom's models that uses telepresence. This technology is perfect for communicating with business partners who are working on a different location.

In partnership with Polycom, Discount Conference Phones offers conference and videoconference capable models online for accessibility of Australian business men, in particular, on further information in buying Polycom conference phones. With the above upgrades on business communications, there is no need to meet for business persons to meet with business partners in locations unfamiliar to one or both parties, or for different department heads within a business to congest in one conference room. Polycom has the solution in promoting interpersonal external and internal relationships in a business, and consequently keeping the business alive.

About the author: Boogie Warwick is a telecommunications expert who believes in the importance of conference phones. Discount Conference Phones is an online store that specializes in providing businesses with affordable, top class and highly functional Polycom Conference Phones.

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Friday, May 14, 2010

Engage Sound Control Specialists to Conduct an Audit of Your Sound Proofing Requirements

By Peter K Ford

Sound control is a major consideration in most workplaces and environments around Australia, being a necessary part of providing a safe and pleasant environment for people to work and operate in. In today's world of technological advancement there is rarely little reason for sound proofing of a noisy machine or environment not to be considered, and in the majority of cases a solution to sound proof can be found.

Historically many people have had to work in noisy factories and environments, consider the mills where operators sat a noisy looms for 12 hours a day, the mines where hammering, blasting and other noisy operations filled the air constantly, and the engine rooms of steam trains where the operators and drivers had to bear the noise of the mechanics of the engines.

Modern sound proof measures involve a number of techniques, where by sound emitted from vibrating machines, air pressure and hydraulic pumps, conveyor belts, bottling lines, high speed tools and machine parts can be reduced or eliminated. Sounding proofing materials can be applied to the machine and its parts to absorb sound caused by vibration, air emission and a variety of other sources in order to reduce the noise as close to the source as possible.

In other cases sound proofing enclosures can be built to enclose a noisy area and produce a noise control solution that prevents noise escaping out into a larger area. A whole machine could be contained within a sounding proofing enclosure, or maybe a room can be fitted with sound proofing materials to contain the sound waves.

Welding is a special operation where not only sound is emitted but also damaging sparks and heat. These nuisances too can be contained by the use of specially designed welding curtains.

Sound control today is a specialized field of technology with many different solutions available sound proofing noise emissions. Each situation is different, in that every environment is different, two pieces of machinery built to the same spec can be installed into two different environments, creating two different noise problems. The variables are endless, flooring, walling, roofing, dimensions of area the machine is housed in - to mention but a few. It is prudent and definitely more cost effective to engage sound control specialists to conduct an audit of your sound proofing requirements, rather than try to solve the problem yourself. The specialists have the knowledge and access to a huge range of materials and solutions.

Sound control specialist provide a full service starting with an audit of your sound level and sources, followed by recommendations for the best possible solution to your sound control. Having decided the best solution for you, they will source, or manufacture and supply the sound control solution for you. In some cases the sound proofing can be installed yourself, or if specialist expertise if needed the sound control consultant will recommend an installer.

Consult a specialist when it comes to sound control, after all it is one of the most important aspects of providing a comfortable, safe and productive work environment and with today's technology sound control is no longer a problem that cannot be dealt with.

Peter Ford is a consultant at Flex Sound Proofing. If you need any information related to Noise Control Products, Soundproof Room, Acoustic Solutions please visit

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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Gateway Technical Support For Wireless Networking

By James Mark Madison

Let's consider a situation when you have a computer at your study plugged in directly to the power cable or DSL modem. But now you have got another desktop or a laptop computer through which you want to access Internet from different ends of the house. Now this can be done extending the wired networking setup. But instead of creating a wired maze around, think some ways to connect the second PC wirelessly to the same network.

So, wireless networking has literally become a standard means of PC sharing. The process eliminates wired clutters and makes it easy to relocate computers and its peripherals as needed. It also gives faster access to Internet and other network resources. But, the matter is, how to set up a home networking system. According to tech support experts, setting up a wireless home network is not so critical task and can be done without physical involvement of a technician. However, you must know some basic things about wireless networking protocol to build a better understanding of the technology and follow online technical support guidance easily.

To set up wireless home networking connection it is essential to have broadband connection with a cable or DSL modem. The hardware components you need include a wireless router, USB wireless network adapter for your desktop and a PC card-card network adapter for your laptop. You can purchase the devices online to get a cheaper deal. One thing you should know here is that the wired and wireless networking process is pretty similar from a functional aspect. So, you can pretend that the connected devices are attached to each other with an invisible wire. Only several high-end applications like high definition video streaming can be done faster through wired networking setups.

Once you have all the needed hardware components at hand, you can start installing the network following the step by step instruction given online. Remote tech support professionals provide easy installation guidance so that even non-technical users can follow them. The final step of wireless network setup is configuring the network adapter. If you are running Windows XP, it can be done easily as compared to other platforms. Finally you need to connect the computers. On Windows XP SP2, the OS directly alerts you that the network has been detected. Online technical support is given here to follow the Windows prompt accordingly.

According to computer support specialists, it is advisable to purchase an ADSL modem with built in wireless router to make the wireless networking setup easier and effortless. One thing you should keep in mind that a router is not a security checkpoint of your networking system. So, you must configure security settings for your system carefully to restrict third party or unauthorized access. A wireless network can be quite secured if you configure the setup properly and allow access only to the authorized users. You must change the default setting of access; else it will be wide open to anyone staying within your network broadcasting range.

Install and configure your home network with remote tech support. This will not only help you save money but also make you learn the process in turn. Computer support is given to secure your network as well.

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