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

Robert Bruce

Robert Bruce

Recent Posts

How Non-Profits Can Lower Costs Through a Cooperative Purchasing Program

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
October 2, 2014

Let’s face it, we all like to save money. Some of my friends think I’m cheap. I like to think of myself as frugal. Whether it’s a discount on a dozen rib eyes at the big box shopping club, or a deal on a fleet of multifunction printers through cooperative purchasing, a dollar saved is a dollar earned. One way that nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and even some small businesses can save money on their capital expenses is through cooperative purchasing.

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How Fiery Workflow Software Streamlines Digital Production Printing

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
September 23, 2014

In several previous blogs, I have raved about multifunction printers (MFP) and how I consider them to be one of the wonders of the Digital Age. The hardware itself—regardless of the brand—is a technological marvel. Using lasers to convert dry toner into high quality printed images rapidly and consistently is no small engineering feat. But the software that is really the brains behind digital printing is equally fascinating. The proper software workflow solution can effectively turbocharge an MFP by increasing job volume, decreasing turnaround time, and maximizing the hardware’s capabilities. One such workflow solution, which I have personal experience with, is EFI’s Fiery. Fiery is brand neutral and is ideal for medium- to high-volume production printing environments. Printers that utilize production workflow solutions, such as Fiery, are able to automate repetitive tasks, customize workflows and intelligently route jobs for output.

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Should You Buy or Lease Office Equipment? Some Factors to Consider

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
August 14, 2014

Information technology and office equipment expenditures, like copiers and printers, are an inevitable fact of modern office life. In today’s business environment, deciding on the right printing devices, computers, document management solutions, network solutions and applications for your enterprise is critical. After choosing the best solution, the next question to ask is – how will it be paid for? Buy it? Lease it? What about Hardware-as-a-Service (HaaS) for IT equipment, like computers and workstations? What if you are a small- to medium-sized business (SMB) without a large in-house IT department? How do you know that you are getting the best solution at the best price for your business? Moreover, how will the choices you make in acquiring equipment affect your business in the long-run?

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7 Benefits of Cloud-Based Document Management Systems

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
August 12, 2014

The cloud keeps getting bigger. And that’s a good thing because premise-based solutions for document management are not necessarily what every enterprise needs. The logistics of capturing, storing, retrieving, indexing, sharing, and securitizing documents is complex and can entail considerable capital outlays. Small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMBs) cannot always afford such large investments.

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How to Securely Print Confidential Documents Without Your Own Printer

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
July 22, 2014

I have a thing for multifunction printers (MFPs). I think they are uber cool. And that is good, because like most office workers, I don’t have a personal desktop printer in my cubicle. I send my print jobs to any one of several MFPs strategically located throughout the office, and most of the time when I get to the printer my copies are waiting for me in the output tray. The other day they weren’t, so after I fixed the paper jam I ordered the job again, and inadvertently printed a 12-page document twice. A waste of time, toner, and paper that could have been avoided had I used a locked print solution. So it got me thinking about the benefits of pull printing, in addition to the environmental factor—things like enhanced security and compliance, cost reduction, and improved productivity.

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DC Data Security: 5 Facts to Know About Data Loss Prevention (DLP)

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
July 1, 2014

Data is the lifeblood of the modern enterprise. Every organization produces data, stores it, and circulates it.

All that hardware and software that we're now constantly connected to — computers, tablets, smartphones, multifunction printers, smart glasses, smart watches, you name it — exists for one reason: data traffic. And that data is becomingly increasingly vulnerable to loss, either by theft or negligence. So it's no surprise that data loss prevention (DLP) has become a top priority for information technology departments and managed services providers (MSPs).

Now, when I say DLP, I'm only talking about solutions and policies directly related to the prevention of data loss and leakage, rather than the recovery of lost data. This is not to say that DLP policies and solutions should ever replace a data back up and recovery plan. DLP, data back up, and disaster recovery planning should all work in conjunction to protect business continuity.

Read on to learn the five ways DLP fits into the business continuity puzzle, including:

  1. Defining DLP and its importance
  2. Network-based data protection
  3. End-point solutions
  4. Storage point data leaks
  5. and more!
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Defend Against Destructive Ransomware and CryptoLocker Malware

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
June 24, 2014

In the classic short story “The Ransom of Red Chief” by O. Henry, a spoiled brat is kidnapped by two inept crooks who become so rattled by the boy’s unruly behavior that they eventually pay to have him taken back by his parents. Unfortunately, having your computer taken over by ransomware is no laughing matter, and any money that changes hands will only be going to the cyber criminals, not to you. So, what is this so called ransomware, what do you do if it invades your computer, and (most importantly) what preventive measures should be taken to avoid it?

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The Real Cost of System Downtime

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
May 27, 2014

Downtime, what a downer. Information technology has become an indispensable workplace necessity. When IT is working as planned and the bits and bytes are flowing we can whistle while we work. But when that dreaded email from the system administrator pops up warning that the system will be down for X amount of time, then our tune changes.

Downtime has become one of the banes of modern life, both at the office and on the road. A chief financial officer I spoke to recently told me she is “crippled” when her email is down. I know the feeling. And that is just one vital enterprise system. Telephones, printers, computers, calendars, the Internet—take away any of those for even a few minutes and we are handcuffed.

Read on to learn more, including:

  1. What exactly is downtime?
  2. What causes downtime?
  3. How much downtime is acceptable?
  4. And how much does downtime cost?
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3 Immediate Benefits of a Hybrid IT Model

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
April 1, 2014

If the term 'hybrid information technology' sounds daunting to you, relax. You are already familiar with the concept of hybrid. You learned it in childhood. Remember Goldilocks? Papa Bear’s porridge was too hot, and Mama’s was too cold. Baby Bear split the difference and got it just right.

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Five Compliance Environments You Should Know About

Robert Bruce

Posted by Robert Bruce
March 4, 2014

In the Digital Age, document storage and compliance with local, state, and federal regulations has never been more important, nor more complicated. From Sarbanes/Oxley to the Affordable Care Act, the devil is in the details. And those details involve accurate record keeping solutions. These solutions may vary from using dedicated software to employing an outsourced managed document services provider.

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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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