IT Solutions

Use a website management company for your school website

Posted on January 24, 2022 at 4:58 pm

A school website is a vital link between school and home for parents who have children at school but also for teachers, governors and other interested parties. It provides a way to stay connected with developments within the school and a way to access important information such as school term dates, staffing changes and future events such as school trips and charity days.

The ongoing maintenance of the school website, keeping it up to date and uploading content can be time consuming for already busy teaching staff so the responsibility for updating the website usually falls to the school administrator who may not have a great deal of experience in this area and will therefore require specific training to raise their skill level. It is for this reason that some schools decide to go down the route of having a managed website.

Many web design companies offer a support package to schools so that they can be contacted if there are any issues that staff cannot resolve and will conduct regular maintenance work on the website to make sure it is functioning as it should. Some will, for a fee, upload fresh content onto the site and remove posts about past events.

Posted in IT Solutions

The job of an IT consultant

Posted on October 16, 2021 at 11:28 am

If you are looking for a career in IT then the job of an IT consultant is a great choice. It allows you to do practical tasks as well as management jobs. The IT industry is ever growing. As technology advances the industry is likely to continue to get bigger over the next few decades. Other industries are using more IT in their day-to-day tasks and this is going to continue to grow.

It is vital for many businesses to have a good grasp on what technology can do for them and how best to use it within their business. Some companies take it upon themselves to research new software, programmes and technology than can be used within the day to day running of the business and to work out how effective these solutions will be for them.  Other businesses will instead bring in a professional IT consultant to help them. The job of an IT consultant is to offer the best advice on developments and offer cutting edge technology strategies that are bespoke to the needs of your business. This may be anything from upgrading internal PC’s to sending staff on IT related training courses.

Posted in IT Solutions

Buying a new monitor for you PC or games console

Posted on April 17, 2021 at 8:44 pm

If you are looking to buy a new monitor then you need to think carefully about what it is going to be used for. Some many of us now have laptops, that monitors are not needed as much as they used to be. Some programmers and designers will have two monitors so that they can switch between screens quickly.

When choosing your monitor, think carefully about the specifications as they often differ quite a bit. If you want your monitor for gaming purposes then it will need to be much more advanced than if you want to use it just for word processing and browsing the internet for example.

You first need to consider what budget you have. Monitors can range from around seventy pounds upwards of a thousand pounds. Once you know what money you have available, you can then start to compare monitors to see what you can get for your money. A gaming monitor will need to have a higher refresh rate and a quick response time. The refresh rate can differ depending on what port you are using too so be sure to check this.

If using a games console such as a PlayStation or an Xbox then you will need to ensure that it has a HDMI port on it preferably 2.0 or above as this will ensure that the monitor can run to its best capabilities.

IF you are going to be using your monitor a lot or leaving it on for long periods of time then the energy efficiency rating is another area you may need to look at. Also, many of the monitors have a function that allows you to instantly adjust the colour settings to reduce the blue light. This setting can help lessen the strain on your eyes which is a must for those that are working or gaming using a monitor for longer periods of time. A good gaming monitor starts from around two hundred pounds but not all will have the specifications easily listed, so you may need to do a bit of research to find out all the details you need and to allow you to compare it to another model.

If you go to buy one from a computer or electrical shop, be aware that they may not always have the knowledge to give you the correct answers on specification, in which case you may be better to look online.

Posted in IT Solutions

Are you keeping your technology up to date?

Posted on March 9, 2021 at 2:42 pm

So many devices and gadgets we use now need to be updated. Lots of people are used to having to have updates on their computers, but often any device that can connect to the internet, may require updates. Phone software and individual apps will be sent updates to be installed along with you smart TV. It is important that you do these updates on a regular basis as updates are important to ensure that the device continues to work as it should. Updates are rolled out for a number of reasons. Sometimes they include additional features that may be useful for you to have but they will also often include security updates. These are very important as it may be that the provider has found a way in which their software can be compromised and the only way to fix this is to roll out an update which contains the fix. If these items are not updated you often find that they do not work as well as they should. There may be security issues along with glitching and software crashes. If you have to do updates on devices that store information such as photos or documents, then you should try and ensure that you back all of these up prior to doing any updates.

Posted in IT Solutions

Sharing IT equipment in an office

Posted on December 18, 2020 at 8:08 pm

It may be that within your office you do not have enough IT equipment for everyone to have their own laptop or IPad for example. This is not necessarily a problem as long as everyone can do their job without having to wait around for use of a computer. What you should try to do though is give everyone their own login. Setting up multiple user accounts will mean you can give each person access to different files and folders and also programmes. This can be very helpful if you don’t want a sales person accessing account information for example. On some devices this is very straight forward but on PC’s, this can be quite tricky so it is advisable to enlist the help of a specialist IT company. IF you have multiple PC’s in the office they will be able to build you a network on which they can all be connected. This allows you to log on to any PC with your credentials and have access to the information you need. Having an external server that stores all the information, means that it is not just stored locally on the hard drive of one PC.

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How can you fix issues with website indexing?

Posted on November 5, 2020 at 2:24 pm

Indexing is the process which the search engines, such as Google, carry out to list your web pages in the search engine results. Often Google will crawl a site and index all the pages which will then show up for the relevant search terms. There are a number of reasons why your page may not get indexed even if the home page pf your site is. If the page is really poor and lacks content then you may find that it is not indexed. If the page has duplicate content on then often only one of the pages will be indexed. Another reason for missing pages from the index is that you have requested that Google not index them for some reason. This may be intentional as certain pages you may not want to appear such as thank you pages or checkout pages. It may actually be an unintentional error that causes your pages to not be indexed such as an incorrect robot’s file or a setting in the admins system. Wordpress has an option that says tick this box to discourage Google from indexing the site. This may mean many of your URL’s are discounted from the search engine results. This can have a huge negative impact on your rankings. The issue is that even when you have fixed the issue, you are in the hands of the search engine as to when they come back and reindex the site again which can take weeks or even months.

Posted in IT Solutions

Looking after your data with cloud based computing

Posted on August 12, 2020 at 8:04 am

Businesses need to take much care and attention when it comes to storing data. This data may be used to contact customers, to advertise their products or services and to allow a business to do their accounting correctly at the end of a financial period. The loss of any sort of data to a company can be a nightmare and should be avoided at all costs.

Many companies are now migrating their services to use cloud based software. Cloud based software has so many different advantages such as flexibility and easy disaster recover. Software or data that is stored on the internal hard drive of an individual laptop or computer can easily be lost if the files become corrupted, deleted or non-accessible. IF you suffer any of these you will have to go through a costly process of trying to get your data recovered and there are simply no guarantees. Sometimes you may find that the information cannot be recovered which can be detrimental to a business.

Cloud computing offers a safety net when it comes to disaster recovery as the data is not stored on one physical computer, it is essentially stored virtually meaning it can be accessed from other places if needed. It is like creating multiple backups of your data.

Posted in IT Solutions

Ensuring everyone has the correct access level for a content management system

Posted on July 13, 2020 at 11:49 am

Most websites that are programmed today are done so with a content management system attached to it. This CMS system may be a bespoke one which has been made by that programmer or the web company or it may be an off the shelf one such as Wordpress or Drupal.

If you are responsible for setting up the content management system users for a website it is important that everyone has the correct level of access they need. If you do not give someone the right privileges then they will not be able to do the work they need to, give them too many privileges, and they may end up deleting things that they shouldn’t or having access to pages they do not need to. Always give a client the minimum level of access needed for them to complete the tasks they may need to this will reduce the likelihood of them doing something wrong on the site. It is important to ensure that the website is backed up regularly, ideally each day to ensure you can roll it back if needed. Most hosting companies will be able to do this for you, but you need to check If you are planning a big update to the site then take a backup right before you start.

Posted in IT Solutions

Can your smart phone replace your laptop?

Posted on April 22, 2020 at 9:29 am

The majority of people between the ages of sixteen and seventy have a mobile device of some description with most of those having a smartphone that is able to access the internet, but can a phone ever replace a computer or laptop? There are those that say yes in this day and age for most people there is no need for a physical keyboard attached to a laptop. I can send emails, view websites, do my banking and order goods on my phone so why should I need to use a laptop? The truth is for the vast majority of tasks that the ordinary person needs to do a smartphone is adequate. It is only if you want to do a reasonable amount of writing that it becomes difficult on a phone screen. People who have deteriorating eyesight can sometimes find this an issue as peering at a small screen can cause eyestrain.

If you enjoy working on photograph editing software to enhance pictures that you have taken, using a laptop is far superior to a smartphone again due to the size of the screen. So, although our phones are becoming more and more indispensable not all applications work as successfully on them.

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Online business security – take control before it’s too late

Posted on December 27, 2019 at 4:03 pm

Over the past few years, hacking and online fraud has become an increasingly bigger risk and is something that is a very real threat to many ecommerce businesses.

If you have a website that sells products online then it is vital that you ensure that the software, you use, or any applications are always up to date. As a responsible website owner, you need to try and keep your customers security in the forefront of your mind. The website needs to be coded in such as way that uses the latest advances and offers protection against the code being manipulated. Updates are often created to add in security features to programs and therefore if an update is not done in a timely manner, you may be opening your business up to a cyber-attack. If your website has a content management system, this will also need to be updated. If you are using an off the shelf CMS system, you will usually be notified when an update is available, and it is then up to you to install it. If you use a bespoke content management system, then the programmers who designed it will need to make updates for you.   

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