The Meridian Blog: Tech News, Tips & More for SMB and Enterprise Environments

Construction and Property Management: Technology trends to watch

Adam Siegelbaum

Posted by Adam Siegelbaum
Tue, Feb 13, 2018


These are the major changes and technology transformations that are influencing the construction and property management industry.

The construction and property management industry has been experiencing strong growth and expansion, with additional growth anticipated in the coming years — and with growth comes transformation.

There are a handful of technology trends influencing the construction and property management sector that are important for organizations in these fields to be aware of.

By gaining an understanding of the shifts that are taking place, they will be better positioned to recognize which organizational adjustments and operational strategy changes they need to make to prepare for the future and gain a competitive advantage.

In this post, I'll expand on a few notable trends I've noticed or been asked about in my dealings with clients in this field, including:

  1. Increased emphasis on collaboration
  2. Internet of Things (IoT)
  3. Virtual and augmented realities (AR and VR)
  4. Telepresence and automated receptionist systems
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How to Take Stress Off Your IT Department: Go Hybrid

Matt Williams

Posted by Matt Williams
Tue, Jan 30, 2018


Outsourced IT professionals can support existing departments.

Partnering with a managed IT services provider (MSP) for a Hybrid IT approach enhances your internal IT department with much-needed support, specialized skills and more — without the expense of adding headcount.

Not every business has the staff within their existing organization that they may need, especially with today's quickly-evolving technology landscape

As Gordon Haff states in his article, Why IT Went Hybrid (And Why It Matters), "it's probably impossible to do everything in-house — and it's certainly not economically sensible." 

Haff is right on target, as more and more situations require specialized skills, such as those specific to cybersecurity, physical security, strategic planning or technology upgrade projects. When these situations arise, a company that attempts to solely handle them in-house, on top of their existing workload, can put too much weight on internal IT departments, leaving them less likely to succeed.

Read on to learn how we partner with many of our clients to alleviate these stresses, because your team deserves the resources and support necessary to succeed.

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Is Your Office Technology Provider a Business Partner, or Just a Vendor?

Juliana Lee

Posted by Juliana Lee
Tue, Nov 07, 2017

The biggest lesson I learned while planning my wedding last year is that success is all about partnership. With so many details, priorities and districtations vying for our attention these days, it's more essential than ever to find someone you can trust and work with as a team in the pursuit of mutual goals, interests and success factors. This doesn't only apply to your personal life, though. In fact, it's just as relevant in business relationships, especially those that relate to the technology that drives your business, such as a managed services provider (MSP).

Whether they're offering help desk services, document solutions, hardware, software, managed IT services, or any combination thereof, the “P” in MSP should really stand for Partner. Let’s face it, if it works out we may be talking about a long-term relationship here. So, before you say “I do,” ask some critical questions of any technology suitors vying for your business.

A service level agreement (SLA) with the right MSP can, and should be, mutually beneficial to both parties — in other words, it should be a partnership. Don’t be timid about scrutinizing the intentions of any firm courting your business. Make them pass the three S test: strategy, service and support.

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The Shift to Predictable Billing for IT Services: Break/fix won't be missed

Juliana Lee

Posted by Juliana Lee
Tue, Oct 17, 2017

Have you ever wondered how IT vendors get away with hourly or timed billing for maintaining systems they were supposed to prevent from having issues in the first place?

Well, the short answer is simply because they could. Because they held a grip on your technology and everyone else in the profession charged the same way.

But not for long...times are definitely a-changing.

The good news is that the introduction of new all-inclusive business models is driving the market towards a fixed fee culture — though the majority of IT providers still use hourly billing under a "break/fix" business model.

But how exactly does the fixed-fee model work? How can one expect to maintain secure, speedy and scalable systems in the face of relentlessly evolving technology, with a predictable monthly bill?

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4 tips for making your office more energy efficient

Juliana Lee

Posted by Juliana Lee
Wed, Aug 02, 2017


Even simple changes can have a significant impact.

Today's business world is becoming increasingly aware of our impact on the environment. 

If you're interested in reducing your carbon footprint and making the planet a healthier, safer place, the good news is that there are plenty of ways to do that. By pursuing green business practices and making your office more sustainable and energy efficient, not only will you be improving the atmosphere, but you'll also be boosting the appeal of your brand.

Below are four easy ways you can enhance your office's efficiency:

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Timely Talk About IT Security – Wannacry!

Jordan Arnold

Posted by Jordan Arnold
Thu, May 18, 2017

By now, I'm just going to assume that most, if not all, of you have at least heard something about the Wannacry! Ransomware.

It’s been all over the news and many of my colleagues and clients have been asking me about it. Unfortunately, I have to deliver some bad news – these kinds of threats are going to continue to be more frequent. They're even getting cooler names from the individuals or groups disseminating them, so the media promotes them more, too...the jury's still out on whether that's a good thing, or a bad thing. 

Related: What DC SMBs Need to Know About Encrypting Ransomware and Malware

While widespread awareness can help slow the spread of bugs like this, it can also inspire copycat attacks from others who want their 15 minutes in the limelight. However, the thing the media's definitely not talking about enough is the fact that this could have been prevented if people simply took proper preventative care of their networks. 

Were you covered for the Wannacry attack? Are you sure or How do you know? Who do you call to get answers about something like this?

Related: Top 5 Risks of Using Outdated Technology

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Create a Winning Workflow Strategy

Kam Roshan

Posted by Kam Roshan
Tue, Feb 28, 2017


The efficiency of any business comes down to its workflow strategy.

Managing your office can be a difficult endeavor. It's an ongoing responsibility that involves a lot of working parts.

Between document and network management, there is never a shortage of processes and systems to assess, issues to address or methods to reconsider. However, the key to ensuring the work of your organization gets done as efficiently and as cost-effective as possible all comes down to your workflow.

Business processes are usually created holistically over time. As such, there are often a lot of areas that overlap, producing redundancies and inefficiencies.

These pitfalls, in turn, lead to unnecessary costs and delays, and hamper the overall performance and success of an organization. As your organization grows and evolves, it's important to adapt operations in tandem and consistently evaluate workflows to ensure they reflect the best possible way for work to get done. 

There are a number of ways to create a winning workflow strategy. The first step is to get a clear picture of what processes and systems are in place right now.

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Be Prepared: Avoid Data Disasters with Backup and Disaster Recovery Planning

Juliana Lee

Posted by Juliana Lee
Tue, Feb 14, 2017

Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst. Murphy’s Law states that anything that can go wrong, will go wrong, and when it comes to information technology, Murphy was an optimist.

Data is at the heart of any modern organization. If critical data is lost due to accident, database corruption, theft, hardware failure, or even natural disaster, business continuity can come to a halt. Data backup and disaster recovery may not be at the top of the list of topics for discussion at the company picnic, but maybe it should be.

Because data is the heart of any enterprise, it's crucial to protect it and be able to recover data that gets lost or corrupted despite your best protective measures.

Read on for:

  1. Why backing up your data matters
  2. What data should be backed up
  3. How data should be backed up
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Unsecured File Sharing is Risky Business

Erjon Xhepa

Posted by Erjon Xhepa
Mon, Jan 09, 2017

File sync-and-share apps have become increasingly popular with enterprises, both small and large.

In some organizations, the ability to share and edit electronic documents is essential to their operations. Used properly, file sharing can enhance productivity, creativity, and collaboration. Used improperly, it can cause data security nightmares.

Hackers and other cyber crooks are always looking for the weak spot in any network security system. They're constantly probing and testing firewalls and antivirus software, or going on “phishing” expeditions looking for victims. But, sometimes, they get lucky and an unsecured document or email just drops into their laps.

RELATED: Is Antivirus Software Really Dead?

A mistake in peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing can result in anything from a slight inconvenience to a major security breach. As a member of Meridian’s VCIO Team, I consider secure file sharing to be a top priority. In this post, I'll explain why it should be one of your top priorities, too.

Read on to learn more about:

  1. Key points that should be included in your policy for secure file sharing
  2. Risks associated with unsecured file sharing
  3. Advantages of secure file sharing practices
  4. Guidelines to help determine who should be responsible for preventing unsecured file sharing in your organization
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No More Excuses: Erase Tape Backups From Your Business Continuity Plan

Erjon Xhepa

Posted by Erjon Xhepa
Tue, Dec 20, 2016

I saw a payphone last week, and it wasn’t even in a museum...

It reminded me of how we're sometimes slow to embrace technological advances. First, there was resistance to cell phones (the brick-sized Iridium phone didn’t help the cause). Then, there was recognition that big change was on the way (massive advertising didn’t hurt). Today, most of us wouldn't even leave home without our smartphones.

In fact, mobile phone adoption is so widespread that some people even develop Nomophobia, or the fear of being without a mobile phone. Even more surprising is the fact that — according to the UN — worldwide, there are more people with mobile phones than there are people with access to toilets. Which segues into today’s blog topic: magnetic tape data backup systems.

Magnetic tape as a backup storage medium is still used by many today, and it may never go away completely, just like green screens and typewriters can still be found in some offices (and museums). But, the Digital Age is upon us, and it’s time to embrace disk drive storage and really embrace cloud-based backups, and let magnetic tape go the way of the payphone.

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News, best practices and more to help you get the most out of your office technology. Whether you're an SMB owner who wears a lot of hats, or an enterprise IT director, facilities manager or just someone who wants to work smarter — this blog has the resources you need to maximize the business impact of all your tech investments. Be sure to subscribe to receive email updates about new posts!

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