Thursday, August 25, 2005





Groupware Proves to Be a Versatile Employee








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Groupware Proves to Be a Versatile Employee

Author: Joe Miller



Groupware



Groupware is a software or hardware that manages documents on which organizations and groups collaborate. Groupware, of some form or another, has become a much sought after technology among businesses. Each groupware package includes tools which are meant to meet the needs of a business. Don�t be alarmed that when your business begins its search for a groupware package that 5,590,000 indexed pages will greet you on Google, 3,820,000 on Yahoo, and 950,316 on MSN. The fact is the market knows that your business needs a groupware package.

In today�s Information Age, business collaboration is only harnessed by the speed and efficiency of its technology. Businesses, large and small, maintain some sort of groupware technology in order to manage document sharing quickly and efficiently. Since groupware is meant to manage documents on which organizations and groups collaborate, the groupware package you choose must be able to work the way your business does.

Thomas Edison once said, �There ain�t no rules around here. We�re just trying to accomplish something.� Whether we like it or not, this is the case in much, if not most, of business collaboration. In other words, the ideal collaboration process would be organized into a regular process, and records of drafts would be stored in files in a way that you would always know where they are. But, the real collaboration process generally involves an ad hoc process of emails whirling back and forth in a cyclone of copies and drafts, saved across multiple email accounts and hard drives. When deadlines draw near and it�s time to merge the changes, it is almost impossible to organize drafts and records in order to have an accurate point of reference.

A Versatile Employee



When deadlines come due, the versatile survive. Businesses need a document manager that can handle the ad hoc jumble that accompanies document collaboration and groupware. Digital Thread technology has stepped up to the challenge and proven itself to be one of your most versatile employees.

Since documents are saved across multiple emails and hard drives by multiple users, businesses need groupware that tracks documents across multiple emails and hard drives and works with multiple users. Groupware with Digital Thread technology is able to do that. Digital Thread also creates digital signatures each time an email is opened with a new draft attached, telling you where it is saved and when the last set of changes were made. When it comes to bringing everything together in the end, Digital Thread creates a version history flow chart and displays merging options.

There is a way to sift through the millions of groupware packages available, and to find technology that works for your business. Because businesses need to manage the ad hoc nature of document collaboration, they need to search for a content management tool, or groupware that is built specifically for ad hoc document management.


About the Author

Joe Miller is an author of informational articles and Online Advertisements on business software. View Informational Articles on Groupware.

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Breaking the Growth Barriers in the Information Technology and Software Sector
Theres nothing automatic about corporate growth particularly in the information technology industry build it and they will come is a myth In the real world there is either a structured processdriven growth cycle or stagnationand stagnation is automatic Inherent to growth cycles are barri

Groupware Proves to Be a Versatile Employee
Groupware Groupware is a software or hardware that manages documents on which organizations and groups collaborate Groupware of some form or another has become a much sought after technology among businesses Each groupware package includes tools which are meant to meet

How to Become a Successful Entrepreneur on the Web
Becoming a successful entrepreneur in the online world is no different than becoming a successful entrepreneur in the brickandmortar world Both tasks require vision determination and hard work The online world of the web offers many exciting opportunities for entrepreneurship bec






Groupware as a Document Manager: Collaboration Series #3








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Groupware as a Document Manager: Collaboration Series #3

Author: Joe Miller



This article is the third of a series of articles exploring specific aspects of groupware. The brief informational articles in this series discuss some of the technologies associated with groupware, as well as some of the characteristics of groupware. Some of these characteristics may go hand in hand with business collaborative needs. Other characteristics go beyond what some groupware providers have to offer. The purpose of these articles is to equip the groupware user or investigator with helpful knowledge about the product in order to enable more effective use or to lead the investigator to the groupware service he or she is looking for. This third article explores groupware as a document manager, and provokes a critical approach to finding the right groupware to meet your business�s needs.

A good litmus test to determine the value of groupware as a document manager consists of the four A�s: Ad Hoc Management, Accountability, Accessibility, and Affordability.

Is Groupware a Document Manager able to Handle Ad Hoc Collaboration?

A document manager is organizational software that tracks and organizes documents. In today�s fast-paced business world, most of the document collaboration that takes place is ad hoc. In other words, documents are continuously fired back and forth in B to B and B to C communication, consisting of multiple individuals. As drafts of documents and presentations are passed back and forth, they are archived in email boxes, saved on hard drives, and passed through servers. If groupware is to be considered an effective document manager, it mush somehow be able to track and manage documents, even in an ad hoc setting.

Is Groupware an Accountable Document Manager?

In other words, as a document manager, can groupware account for the documents and their versions? Can it answer the who, what, when, where, and how questions that inevitably arise? Finding groupware that utilizes Digital Thread technology informs users where a document is saved and which version they are viewing. All tracking information is then collected into a digital flow chart displaying the version history of the document.

Is Groupware an Accessible Document Manager?

Often, document manager software systems require IT infrastructure and limited usability. Unless everyone with whom a user collaborates is a user too, the groupware isn�t very beneficial. However, groupware technology uses existing IT infrastructure and opens up accessibility to everyone with whom a user collaborates. Digital Thread still ties together document versions made by non users. Non-users receive digital signatures with attached document versions. Non-users cannot, however, access a version history, nor can they receive digital signatures in projects with other non-users.

Is Groupware an Affordable Document Manager?

The easy answer to that is �yes, it can be.� In other words, groupware packages are produced in the business market in the millions. Just check out the search engine results page of any search engine after searching �groupware.� As of today, Google results include 4,870,000 indexed pages, Yahoo yields 4,820,000 indexed pages, and MSN yields 961,866 indexed pages.

Sifting through these results is impossible, though this article hopes to simplify that process through helpful information about effective features and technologies needed to meet today�s business needs without costing too much. Groupware without an expensive IT infrastructure is available with simple installation and affordable set up. The cost of time, training, and setup are minimal. Groupware is meant to work for the business. Don�t get stuck looking for products that work the other way around.


About the Author

Joe Miller is an online advertiser and author of informational articles on business software. More information on Groupware or Document Manager is available at NextPage.com.

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Getting Started In Information Technology Computer Consulting








Information Technology

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Getting Started In Information Technology Computer Consulting

Author: John Gall

One of the best things about being in the Information Technology industry is consulting. For purposes of this article I'm using the term consulting in reference to side jobs or moonlighting work. While full time Computer Consultants can also benefit from the tips in this article, I'm really writing at the IT Employee who works a full-time IT job and then takes extra jobs for extra money on the side.

So your working your regular job and you want to earn more working for yourself. Here's a few ideas to get started. First realize that its now almost impossible to function these days without a computer in your home. In fact many homes now have 2-3 PC's and eventually they are going to break or will need to be hooked together.

Word of Mouth Is King

To start, get yourself some business cards that explain your services. DO NOT LIST YOUR RATE I made this rookie mistake and was tied to my lowball rate once I was more established. So start by spreading the word at work. Hopefully your employer is tolerant of this. To know the limits simply ask someone in HR if the company has a policy regarding work outside of the job. If not you may be able to post a notice in the lunchroom or company classified ad board. However if this is not an option just spread the word among co-workers you trust. Word of mouth is always the best way to bring in new business. Everyone knows someone with a broken computer and you just need to get people talking. Once you get an opportunity, provide more service than the customer expects. Remember these initial jobs are seeds so even if you don't make a profit, the goodwill you earn will keep you working down the road.

The golden ring in doing this is to find someone who will recommend you to a small or medium size business that does not have its own IT staff.

Why Businesses? Because its steady work and businesses know that time is money. Businesses tend to pay on-time, they don't keep junk on their systems, and if a job runs over the amount of time you expect they are generally willing to keep the clock running so long as their systems are fixed. Home clients on the other hand tie the money for the job with the price of the PC. This works against us as PC's become cheaper. Businesses assign a monetary value to their time and data so these are easier clients to work with. They also view hiring you as just another cost of business and will not hesitate to let any employee call you in after you gain their trust.

Advertising

I've tried advertising in newspapers and never found it to pay off. One of the best things I've done besides word of mouth is to use my neighborhood. I put a flyer in each newspaper box advertising my services. The target here is the person who works out of a home office. This is another attempt to secure a client whose time is money. From here apply the same principle of outperforming their expectations. Let them know you appreciate referrals and provide them with plenty of extra business cards. I once was hired to separate two businesses during a purchase. While one half was my client I made sure the other business owner knew the level of my service and went out of my way to ensure his systems worked as well or better once I left. Of course I taped my card to each of his servers.

A better way than walking your neighborhood is to obtain a list of the addresses in your neighborhood and visit http://www.usps.com and start a mailing campaign. Select the postcard mailing option and simply upload your flyer, send them your list of addresses and enter your credit card number. I've found that I can canvass a 300 house neighborhood for about $40.00 - $50.00 much cheaper and more targeted then my other attempts.

The reason you want to use a postcard is two fold. 1) It's cheaper 2) Its easy to hang on to. When I used 8 1/2 x 11 paper flyers I only could reach those with an immediate computer problem. Everyone else simply tossed the ad. The idea it to get them to keep your card for later so offer an incentive to this. Give them $10.00 off their first job or offer a free consultation. You want them calling you not the other guy.

Billing

Ok here's my take on billing and getting paid. Judgment is the key. When you bill a business be sure to add to your invoice that payment is due upon receipt. Does this mean you'll get paid immediately? Nope but if you leave it out businesses will assume a Net 30 approach and pay you 30 days after receipt and that's no good. So put the payment due upon receipt and see what happens. I give them 30 days anyway before sending a second invoice with a clear notice that this is a PAST DUE invoice. Most times this clears things up. Now I should add that I do have some customers that are inconsistent about how long it takes to get paid but they do pay and furthermore I LIKE working for them. Maybe they are the type that doesn't watch over my shoulder or gives me the key to the place or lets me take stuff home to work on.

My point is you be the judge where the hassle is worth the delay if this occurs. Most important spell out your terms on the invoice and send reminders every 30 days. Now home users are different, you should expect them to pay on the spot or very soon after. Just as the local PC shop expects them to pay before getting their stuff back you should too. Judgment comes into play here as well. Some will ask you to stop by for one thing and then keep you longer than expected. DO NOT bring a prepared invoice based on what you believe the charge will be. It's always better to tell them the cost and then e-mail them the invoice after you've been paid.

Tax Tips

If your serious about an on-going consulting business take the time to set yourself up properly. This will pay dividends in increased revenue and tax savings. Assign a room in your house as your home office. This will let you deduct any costs related to that office from your earnings as a consultant. There is no law your business has to make a profit so as long as you document the expenses you deduct you can do so even if the expenses exceed your earnings. The benefit here is that you get some tax savings from your regular paycheck from the loss of your business. Hopefully your business gets going and earns a profit but until this is the case you may as well do what you can to save money. A few examples of things you can deduct are the insurance, utilities, and internet costs proportional to the % of square feet your office consumes. I've even heard that technically you can deduct dog related expenses if you can prove the dog also guards the home office. I don't recommend stretching anything however.

Sales Tax

Get yourself established as a business in your state so you can charge sales tax. I know this sounds crazy but if your going to sell your time, why not sell the parts and mark them up 10% so you make more money. I used to require my clients to purchase items and then call me to install them. Now I just make sure I trust they'll pay and order the items myself. This lets me increase revenue and as long as you keep track of what you charged you simply pay the sales tax at the end of the year, couldn't be easier.

Hopefully those tips will help you start a small business on the side. From there you can grow or shrink the business as you see fit.

About The Author

John Gall is a full time IT Manager and IT Consultant in Minnesota. He runs several websites as a hobby featuring content similar to that in this article: http://www.gallconsulting.com, http://www.sandalspictures.com, http://www.napavalleypictures.com

http://www.winesilove.com

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Getting Started In Information Technology Computer Consulting
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Exactly What Does FTP Stand for and What Can it do for Me?








Information Technology

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Exactly What Does FTP Stand for and What Can it do for Me?

Author: Michael Turner

FTP stands for "file transfer protocol". FTP is basically a way of sending files over the Internet.

An FTP program can help you with uploading information from your computer to your server and vice versa. All you do is drag the information from one window to the next.

If you have a website, then you want to use FTP and are probably already doing so without knowing it. Once you create your website, you have to get it to the server in order for it to be available online and the best way to transfer these files is by FTP.

Handling your file transfers with FTP only requires that you have an FTP client that provides you the software necessary. This type of client is available free online for personal use or educational purposes, but for business purposed there are plenty of good programs that are affordable and offer free trials as well.

Most of the time you will need to create a password and user ID for your FTP account and then all you have to do is sign in and start transferring.

FTP is certainly a program that will make your life a lot easier. If you are doing any kind of file transferring, whether it be from your computer to a server or from computer to computer, file transfer protocol will certainly make your job of managing files simple.

If you are interested in FTP and creating a user name and password for an FTP program then you need to go online and find the best program for you. There are many programs available from free to expensive and various ones have different tools and different functions that you might be interested in. Simply search online and research the different programs available.

Once you find the perfect FTP program, all that is left to do is download and start using it. You will find out quickly that when you implement FTP into your file transferring activities, it happens quickly and without a lot of hassle. You will really enjoy using FTP so find a program and download it today. There is no reason not to make your life easier by transferring files in this easy and straightforward manner.

If you are interested in a more detailed description of FTP and how it works in regard to technology and programming, you can simply search online for more technical information that will explain how FTP is written and used by servers and computers.

For most people however, knowing that FTP simply transfers files from computer to computer or from computer to server is enough information and will get them headed in the right direction so they can put the power of FTP to work.

About the Author

Michael Turner reveals step-by-step how you can increase search engine traffic in his free 7 part mini-series. Grab it now at http://www.powertraffictactics.com/

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Encompix ETO ERP Meeting to Introduce Version 93
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Engineer-to-Order ERP Experts to Meet in Dearborn May 9 - 11








Information Technology

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Engineer-to-Order ERP Experts to Meet in Dearborn May 9 - 11

Author: Roger Meloy

Whether a senior Engineer-to-order executive, IT manager, or ETO ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) end-user, the Encompix Customer Conference will provide immediate value. The conference is being held in Dearborn Michigan, May 9 � 11, 2005.

The agenda includes sessions that cover financial accounting, job costing, inventory, material planning, engineering, manufacturing, purchasing, CRM, reporting, and information technology.

�Job Costing Redesign
�Contribution Reporting
�Redesign
�Mfg. Part Processing
�Project Reserved Inventory
�E-BOM
�3D CAD/PLM/Document
�Management
�Financial Enhancements
�Encompix CRM
�Time & Material Focus
�Microsoft and Encompix

Benefits:
� Get updates on Encompix future technology direction
� Learn about version 9.3
� Review new product offerings from Encompix partners
� Input your ideas into future product development
� Obtain best practices from other customers, partners and industry experts
� Network with your peers in your industry
� Meet with all key Encompix personnel

Early Bird Registration is being accepted until April 8, 2005; the fee is $595.
Regular Registration is being accepted until April 22, 2005; the fee is $695.

The conference fee covers:
� Dinner at Automotive Hall of Fame
� Breakfast, lunch and dinner Tuesday
� All special events
� Breakfast Wednesday
� All conference materials

For more conference information go to http://www.encompix.com/conf2005/2005confinvite.pdf or inquire with Heather Lucas at e-mail protected from spam bots.

Encompix (www.encompix.com) has filled the manufacturing software requirements of Engineer-to-Order companies since 1992. The company name reflects our commitment to developing business application solutions that encompass the complex areas of project-based and job-based manufacturing.

Encompix provides ETO manufacturers with a competitive advantage by improving bottom line results.

###
Roger Meloy
Encompix
513-733-0066

About the Author

None

...








Getting Started In Information Technology Computer Consulting
One of the best things about being in the Information Technology industry is consulting For purposes of this article Im using the term consulting in reference to side jobs or moonlighting work While full time Computer Consultants can also benefit from the tips in this article Im really writi

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FTP stands for file transfer protocol FTP is basically a way of sending files over the Internet An FTP program can help you with uploading information from your computer to your server and vice versa All you do is drag the information from one window to the next If you have a web

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This article is the third of a series of articles exploring specific aspects of groupware The brief informational articles in this series discuss some of the technologies associated with groupware as well as some of the characteristics of groupware Some of these characteristics may go






Encompix ETO ERP Meeting to Introduce Version 9.3








Information Technology

Back To Snippet


Back To SITEMAP

Encompix ETO ERP Meeting to Introduce Version 9.3

Author: Roger Meloy

Whether a senior Engineer-to-order executive, IT manager, or ETO ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) end-user, the Encompix Customer Conference will provide immediate value. The conference is being held in Dearborn Michigan, May 9 � 11, 2005.

The agenda includes sessions that cover financial accounting, job costing, inventory, material planning, engineering, manufacturing, purchasing, CRM, reporting, and information technology.

� Job Costing Redesign
� Contribution Reporting
� Redesign
� Mfg. Part Processing
� Project Reserved Inventory
� E-BOM
� 3D CAD/PLM/Document
� Management
� Financial Enhancements
� Encompix CRM
� Time & Material Focus
� Microsoft and Encompix

Benefits:
� Get updates on Encompix future technology direction
� Learn about version 9.3
� Review new product offerings from Encompix partners
� Input your ideas into future product development
� Obtain best practices from other customers, partners and industry experts
� Network with your peers in your industry
� Meet with all key Encompix personnel

Early Bird Registration is being accepted until April 8, 2005; the fee is $595.
Regular Registration is being accepted until April 22, 2005; the fee is $695.

The conference fee covers:
� Dinner at Automotive Hall of Fame
� Breakfast, lunch and dinner Tuesday
� All special events
� Breakfast Wednesday
� All conference materials

For more conference information go to http://www.encompix.com/conf2005/2005confinvite.pdf or inquire with Heather Lucas at e-mail protected from spam bots.

Encompix (www.encompix.com) has filled the manufacturing software requirements of Engineer-to-Order companies since 1992. The company name reflects our commitment to developing business application solutions that encompass the complex areas of project-based and job-based manufacturing.

Encompix provides ETO manufacturers with a competitive advantage by improving bottom line results.

###
Roger Meloy
Encompix
513-733-0066

About the Author

None

...








What happened to the Giant Sucking Sound of Outsourcing
The conventional wisdom is that outsourcing has been very bad for the US Information Technology workforce After all now that a company can transfer the work of a 50hour US programmer to an equally skilled programmer in India or Romania and pay only 5hour for the same job what are US wor

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Encompix Engineer-to-Order Enterprise Resource Planning Meeting May 9 - 11








Information Technology

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Encompix Engineer-to-Order Enterprise Resource Planning Meeting May 9 - 11

Author: Roger Meloy

Whether a senior Engineer-to-order executive, IT manager, or ETO ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) end-user, the Encompix Customer Conference will provide immediate value. The conference is being held in Dearborn Michigan, May 9 � 11, 2005.

The agenda includes sessions that cover financial accounting, job costing, inventory, material planning, engineering, manufacturing, purchasing, CRM, reporting, and information technology.

�Job Costing Redesign
�Contribution Reporting
�Redesign
�Mfg. Part Processing
�Project Reserved Inventory
�E-BOM
�3D CAD/PLM/Document
�Management
�Financial Enhancements
�Encompix CRM
�Time & Material Focus
�Microsoft and Encompix

Benefits:
� Get updates on Encompix future technology direction
� Learn about version 9.3
� Review new product offerings from Encompix partners
� Input your ideas into future product development
� Obtain best practices from other customers, partners and industry experts
� Network with your peers in your industry
� Meet with all key Encompix personnel

Early Bird Registration is being accepted until April 8, 2005; the fee is $595.
Regular Registration is being accepted until April 22, 2005; the fee is $695.

The conference fee covers:
� Dinner at Automotive Hall of Fame
� Breakfast, lunch and dinner Tuesday
� All special events
� Breakfast Wednesday
� All conference materials

For more conference information go to http://www.encompix.com/conf2005/2005confinvite.pdf or inquire with Heather Lucas at e-mail protected from spam bots.

Encompix (www.encompix.com) has filled the manufacturing software requirements of Engineer-to-Order companies since 1992. The company name reflects our commitment to developing business application solutions that encompass the complex areas of project-based and job-based manufacturing.

Encompix provides ETO manufacturers with a competitive advantage by improving bottom line results.

###
Roger Meloy
Encompix
513-733-0066

About the Author

None

...








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