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Computer Basics Explained: What is the Cloud?

Now more than ever, at work, at home, everyone is talking about the Cloud. And no – not the type of cloud you learned about in elementary science class.

When defining computing terms, a visual example can help wrap your head around a specific concept. With that said, let’s picture this…a local storage facility in your hometown. The storage facility, in computing terms, is the Internet. The storage units together make up the Cloud.

Benefits of the Cloud

Have you ever worked on a document for hours, forgot to save it, and the power went out? Or have you ever experienced the notorious ‘black screen’ and were unable to access any files off your computer? Losing information you have worked on for hours is frustrating. The Cloud can help prevent this from happening, which is why it has become so popular.

The Cloud allows anyone to store and access data and programs via the Internet instead of their own computer’s hard drive. Therefore, you could view files from anywhere, not just from your corner office desk.

One of the most popular Cloud platforms is Office 365. This platform has changed how we work, allowing companies to become mobile and increasing productivity, accessibility, and security. The Cloud offers many features like multi-user file access, auto-save features, and the ability to share files with individuals outside your organization, like clients or customers.

Cloud Concerns

While the Cloud has its benefits, it has its challenges, specifically security concerns and license creep (better known as an IV drip).

Security Concerns
When employees are working remotely, how do employers know what they are truly doing? How do businesses know their data is protected if it can be accessed from anywhere? A lack of complete control over who can access your company’s sensitive information is one of the many security concerns with switching your data storage over to the Cloud.

License Creep
License creep, also known as your monthly Cloud IV drip in the computing world, is another concern.
All the Cloud providers have made the customization of your account easy. It is also easy to add services. Need more disk space? Press a button. Need another account? Press a button. Before you know it – your monthly costs associated with using the Cloud turns into a lot more than you budgeted – hence the term IV drip (it slowly adds up).

How can Intrada help?

While Intrada Technologies is not PRO-Cloud, we look at it as a tool in your productivity toolbox and we can help you do the same. We are very experienced in the management of the Cloud and, specifically, Office 365 configurations. We can explain the benefits and challenges so you can decide if it is the right move for your business. For a free technical assessment, contact us today at (570) 321-7370.

 

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Rotary Youth Exchange 2019

Now, more than ever, organizations are engaging larger audiences using live streaming technologies. Not only can you reach more people with your messages, but all activity is tracked with real-time measurements. Live streaming also gives the ability for remote attendees to be included.

Most people can capture a video on a mobile device, but the audio/visual quality may suffer. Live streaming requires detailed planning, production, and technological know-how to ensure your event goes off seamlessly.

Intrada Technologies has years of experience planning and successfully achieving our clients’ audio/visual, event management, and web streaming goals. From small to large events, we have anticipated needs and proactively supported clients locally and nationally.

Intrada’s Approach to Live Event Streaming

Level 1
Our team visits your site and live streams your event. We test lighting and sound and use technical know-how to live stream on the platform (Facebook/YouTube) of your choice.

Level 2
Intrada takes on a greater role and works with your team to plan out your event. We hold pre-event calls as well as take on the role of directing, producing, and managing your virtual event.

Why consider live streaming (or live event streaming)?

Live streaming an event has many benefits, including a greater reach, engagement, future audience views, and can grow your website traffic. While offering more visibility, it also gives your event a longer shelf life.

Online video consumption is one of the most popular internet activities worldwide. With 93.7% of businesses using Facebook and over 2 billion users accessing YouTube’s website monthly, live streaming makes sense.

Intrada’s Live Streaming

Rotary Youth Exchange 2019

Ribbon-Cuttings
Live streaming a ribbon-cutting allows additional customers to join the celebration. Intrada Technologies has successfully live streamed several regional ribbon cuttings over the past few years.

The footage that is streamed tells a story of growth, stability, and introduction to a prospective client and, over time, will provide a historical value on a platform available to everyone. The video can be viewed again, not just a memory framed in an office lobby.

Conferences
Rotary International District 7360, covering parts of Pennsylvania and Maryland, hosts a youth exchange conference each year. Intrada has been charged with live streaming the event on Facebook since 2018.

At the conference, foreign exchange students supported by the schools in the district, present a program for attending Rotarians. Each student is involved in singing, dancing, performing, or speaking.   Livestreaming the event allowed 2,000 views in over 30 countries, in addition to the 400 people attending.   Family members were able to see loved ones and send messages via Facebook Live. Over the next several weeks, views and shares exceeded 10,000 expanding the program's reach 25 times. Rotarians were able to share this event with others interested in Rotary's exchange program.  

Educational Seminars
For attendees unable to attend educational seminars, Intrada has partnered with organizations to stream short synopses of content. We refer viewers to sections of the client’s website for more information. These videos can be archived and viewed at a later date.

Start Streaming with Intrada

With two decades of experience creating and delivering key messaging, Intrada Technologies manages the creative process for our clients and provides the technical production of live event streams. The live streaming process begins with speaking with Intrada’s seasoned and knowledgeable team.

After defining the target audience and event scope, our team builds the entire production configuration, including onsite audio and video needs.

Live streaming is one of the most powerful and cost-effective delivery platforms your organization can have in its digital media toolbox. Give Intrada a call to obtain a free estimate and discuss our live event streaming process.

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While all of the effects of COVID-19 have yet to be seen, the challenges for both large and small businesses are significant. Staying abreast of the constant changes and the impacts to your industry while keeping your business afloat can be all-encompassing.

As a small business, Intrada Technologies understands. We can help.

Intrada Technologies takes our partnership with clients seriously. Intrada Technologies was founded to build ongoing, trusted, collaborative relationships with clients through our full-service web development and network management services. We will be there when you need us.

Our commitment to our clients and to exceeding their expectations led us to develop a vital resource – the Situation Response Process.

When situations arise, it can be difficult to ascertain the best steps to take. The natural inclination is to take a step back. Intrada’s Situation Response Process encourages our staff to lean in with assistance and forward-thinking recommendations when clients are in distress.

The Situation Response Process helps Intrada and our clients best move through all phases of a situation and is incorporated into every one of our agreements. Intrada Technologies works hard to ensure our clients have what they need to run with maximum efficiency and reliability. Our goal is to help your business succeed.

This overview will provide insight into how Intrada Technologies’ Situation Response Process actively supports our clients, enabling them to respond quickly and proactively when an issue arises.

The Phases

The Situation Response Process flows between five phases: Initial, Maintenance, Transition, Resolution, and Evaluation. Every response differs because each client and circumstance have their nuances, but the process is a reliable framework for Intrada and our clients’ staff to build upon.

If your organization has a situation arise, Intrada Technologies will walk with you through each phase. The Service Response Process will allow you to respond quickly and consistently across all Intrada-serviced platforms for the best potential outcome.

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Initial Phase

Unexpected events, crises, and emergencies spark confusion and present the challenges of incomplete or scattered facts, high-strung emotions, and possible media interest. Acknowledging the event and wisely sharing appropriate, factual information quickly through various channels builds trust in your organization’s credibility.

“There is no second chance to get it right in the initial phase of a crisis.” Barbara Reynolds, CDC

Intrada Technologies’ Situation Response Process activates when our staff becomes aware of your business’ issue – whether pre-crisis or at impact. Our owners are notified quickly and assign staff to help. We immediately reach out to collaborate with you and your staff to understand the situation, anticipate your needs, and provide support.

Intrada offers assistance with message development and enables you to distribute your message rapidly through the Internet, network, and social channels. Auditing existing communications, digital platforms, and marketing campaigns for revisions is promptly recommended and handled. Technology assets and configurations are reviewed to ensure prevent or minimize any service interruptions. Our Help Desk team is alerted and stands ready to aid your staff and launch a Disaster Recovery Policy check, if necessary. With your team’s input, our staff develops a Maintenance Response Plan to guide the next phase of the Situation Response Process.

Maintenance

During the Maintenance Phase, organizations seek to contain the situation, gain their public’s understanding, listen to get feedback, and respond with correct information or recommendations.

In implementing the Response Plan, Intrada’s staff strategically focuses on your web, IT and network challenges, empowering your business to both share and gather information. Verifying that all your digital and communication channels are updated, our team ensures you obtain the data you need and your customers receive your messages. Marketing and communication needs continue to be monitored and revised as needed.

While your organization is continuing to assess and address the event, our team’s diverse, technical know-how is at work utilizing the cutting-edge technology resources to create effective solutions and prepare for the next phase.

Transition

As the situation winds down, your business must transition from maintaining to thriving. Transitioning must be handled with care to prevent missteps. Using clear messaging through all your communication channels, set your audience’s expectations about the organization’s next steps and what to expect during the transition.

In the Transition Phase, Intrada Technologies helps our clients connect with customers to build excitement and generate momentum through updated communications, positive messaging, fresh images and content. Technology assets and configurations are reviewed again to minimize or prevent any service interruption. Help Desk team members identify the best process to transition your staff and communicate needful information to complete the phase. Targeted ad campaigns are scheduled to grow visibility and business interest.

Resolution

As operations return to a new normal in the Resolution Phase, Intrada will continue to support your organization’s web development, network management and technology needs. All systems’ functionality will be confirmed, messaging honed, platforms primed and digital marketing scheduled to invigorate your new focus.

Evaluation

Following the implementation of the Situation Response Process, your staff and Intrada will debrief with an honest evaluation of what worked, lessons learned, and ways to improve the process. Insights will be documented and filed for future reference.

"When a crisis hits, a positive outcome often depends on how well you have prepared and with whom you have partnered."

Conclusion

Intrada Technologies’ goal remains the same with the development of the Situation Response Process - to exceed our clients’ expectations. Through ongoing, trusted partnerships, we are prepared to create cutting-edge technology service solutions and deliver outstanding customer experiences to support you in any phase of your business’ life.

Is your Information Technology or Development partner reaching out to you with these proactive solutions during a crisis? Contact us today to learn more about a collaborative relationship with Intrada Technologies for your web development, IT, and network management needs.

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While the new normal for many of us consists of working remotely, homeschooling our children, and only leaving our homes for essential items, taking a moment to relax is necessary for our mental health. Here at Intrada we thought, why not send out a puzzle? Who doesn't like puzzles?

Take a break, grab a cup of coffee or tea, and try to successfully finish our puzzle. You may notice some familiar faces. Click here to begin assembling.

Stay safe. Stay healthy. Together, we will get through this.
-The Team at Intrada Technologies

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Since the middle of March, many of us have been working remotely due to COVID-19. Whether located in the corner of your family room, a closet, or on your kitchen island, our new commute times are now seconds and the new business attire is quite comfortable. However, our new workstations may not be as quiet as they were before and interruptions are inevitable.

While we are adapting as best as we can, adjusting to a new virtual office does come with challenges. Intrada Technologies suggests approaching our new normal by assessing these challenges proactively, rather than reactively.

Virtual Office Adjustment Tips

  1. Your new office normal should begin with a discussion with family members about work privacy.
    This discussion should prevent unauthorized access to screens, ensure the confidentiality of work-related phone calls, and lessen the likelihood of confidential files and documents being read. Think carefully about where you set up your workspace so you can be productive and efficient, while also following your company's policies. When you close up shop for the day, be intentional about closing windows on your screen and gathering documents into a folder where others will not accidentally see something they should not.
  2. Just because you are home does not mean you are available at any request.
    Be realistic as you discuss your availability with both family members and your employer. Be honest with family about your work requirements and what you need from them. Then, listen to their needs. If children are involved and your partner/spouse also has a job, make compromises to best meet everyone’s needs and respect responsibilities. Following your family chat, discuss your new goals and preferred schedule management with your employer. This will help diffuse resentment and appropriately set expectations on both sides. Not being on-call with family members should be included in the preceding work privacy discussion. Set expectations and follow them.
  3. An office should be an area where you can easily focus.
    If you do not have children, the kitchen island may work for your situation. If you do have children, being in the middle of the room with the most traffic may not be ideal unless your super power is ignoring things. Remember the old real estate adage about the best place to buy – location, location, location. Choose wisely. Then, set up the workspace that works for you.
  4. Document Sharing Recommendations
    Intrada Technologies encourages those working remotely to use a business account/configuration for sharing documents, not personal accounts. Some options include Google Drive – Business, Microsoft Office 365 with SharePoint and Dropbox Business.
  5. Video and Audio-Conferencing Software Options
    Intrada has used GoTo Meeting for several years with much success and we recommend it. Zoom is another option, but this new conference calling platform has been in the news a lot with how they are handling security. Overall, Zoom is fine to use and a great tool, but remember, as with any platform, you must protect meeting access to prevent the hijacking of meetings.
  6. Follow a schedule
    Most experts recommend following a schedule like you typically would if your commute was not ten feet. Structure and productivity go hand-in-hand. Make your bed. Shower. Get dressed. Eat breakfast. Try to make the new routine to work as normal as it was before the change of scenery.

How can Intrada Help?

Intrada Technologies is a full-service web development and network management company with a focus on creating ongoing, trusted partnerships with each of our clients. We make sure our clients have what they require to run their businesses with maximum efficiency and reliability, as many of their needs are mission-critical.

Our unique, collaborative partnerships allow us to provide our clients with the assurance that we will be there when they need us. From API development with websites to Voice Over IP (VoIP) for remote or softphone solutions to security and compliancy management to cloud hosting to equipment and software sales, we are here to help. Give us a call. Intrada Technologies – Exceeding Expectations.

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Contact Information: 
    31 Ashler Manor Drive
    Muncy, PA 17756

Hours of Operation:
    Monday to Friday 8 AM > 5 PM EST
 
 800-858-5745
 

OUR FOCUS

Intrada Technologies is a full-service web development and network management company with a focus on creating ongoing, trusted partnerships with each of our clients.

We make sure our clients have what they require to run their businesses with maximum efficiency and reliability, as many of their needs are mission-critical. 

Our unique, collaborative partnerships allow us to provide our clients with the assurance that we will be there when they need us.

OUR TEAM