What Does The Discontinuation Of Infopath Mean For Users?

When Microsoft announced discontinuation of InfoPath, it was not the end of the story. Your forms did not stop working all of a sudden. It has remained a part of the SharePoint ecosystem. Even when Microsoft made the announcement, it made it clear that like all its Office products, it will also keep getting support for a decade. So you can continue seeing support for the product until 2023. But with limited capabilities, everyone can see why it is important to look out for an infopath replacement.

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Support for InfoPath

According to Microsoft Support Lifecycle Policy, the next on-premise release for SharePoint will also include support for the InfoPath Forms Services. You can continue getting support on SharePoint Online until Microsoft has an announcement to make the future.

Microsoft has been promoting its InfoPath users to embrace its new Contextual Process Apps. They have been working on this for some time. The concept behind this is to get the business processes of its users connected just like the users are.

Contextual Process Apps – The Concept

The key points of this new concept are as following:

  • Awareness – The concept intends to keep users aware of all relevant data. It must be available to them where and when they need it. Users should not have to sift through lots of ‘noise’.
  • Analysis – It should help create value from all the process data so that users can interact with it. Microsoft intends to use telemetry from business processes for understanding user actions and making continuous efforts for improving the processes.
  • Capture Data & Output – The system intends to deliver data in the desired formats. Thus, data will be available through the process in formats that is easily usable.
  • Business Process Management – Another aspect of the concept is to maintain balance between effective management of activities, flexibility and versatility for users.
  • Collaboration – The company intends to offer collaborative tools for helping its users create content. It intends to continue with the model within business processes to simplify them further.

Microsoft has pointed out 4 options how Contextual Process Apps will manifest them within the Office Forms product plan. These include Excel surveys, structured documents, list forms, and app forms. While the company is busy providing solutions, there are other infopath replacement options which are available to users.

Even when the company continues to support InfoPath, there are many limitations and it will be best to move onto something that is available without any restrictions.

How WYSI Can Enhance Your Business

Many business leaders like to think in terms of OODA loops. OODA stands for observe, orient, decide, and act. This refers to how quickly you and your business can gather information, decide how to respond to that information, and then actually respond. In the fast-paced business world, you are always competing with someone else to be the fastest and most innovative. In this competitive climate, the business with the fastest OODA loops tends to be the most successful, and when that business is competing with another business, the objective is to disrupt the other’s loops. A robust, cutting-edge internet presence is the best way to accomplish all of these goals. Continue reading How WYSI Can Enhance Your Business

IT Basics: What Every Startup Needs To Know

Information technology plays an essential role in the day-to-day operations of startups. If you are to compete against other market participants, investing in technology is an absolute must. But rather than treat it as a business expense, look at technology as a gateway that opens up new business opportunities.

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Benefits Of IT

It protects vital data. This encompasses customer contact details, inventories, payroll, projected numbers, and so forth. Having reliable IT support allows you to back up gigabytes of crucial data into a secure remote facility. In the past, businesses were limited with physical devices like flash drives and compact discs to save and secure information.

Streamlined operations

A solid IT infrastructure in place yields maximized profits, reduced costs, and increased efficiency. One of the key factors that distinguish workforce productivity is how efficiently employees can collaborate with their coworkers. Modern IT solutions are necessary to enable dispersed teams to communicate without issues.

Reduced costs

Upfront cost of IT services can be somewhat rich. However, consistent implementation of Ottawa managed services can lead to reduced costs. The business can expect to recoup the initial costs via long-term savings. A good example where IT can help cut costs is effective employee training through a dedicated software application, which can be reused by future employees without having to be completely replaced or repaid for. Getting help form a professional company can give you the security your business needs.

How Much IT Do You Need?

You don’t want to skimp on IT services, but at the same time you also don’t want to splurge on them. Spending too much money on tech will force you to overwork the tools to recoup expenses and, as a result, consume more of your time and attention. Spend too little and competitors that have the best tech working for them can easily crush you.

As a startup, your IT goal should be to implement sufficient tech to see a tangible benefit, avoid worst case scenarios, and identify new market opportunities as they unfold. Keep in mind that technology has a cost beyond its dollar value. It will also cost you time to implement, maintain, and to retrain your workforce to use the technology proficiently. Be sure to work with industry experts to get the most benefit.

5 Ways Document Management Software Helps Improve Your Small Business Efficiency

If you’re considering about going all digital with your business’ documents—stop just thinking about it and start planning the transition today. Not only does digitizing your office’s documents eliminate bulky paper storage, it actually saves you money.

By choosing the right document management software for your business, you’ll save time searching for the documents you need, meaning that you’ll have more time to get actual work done. Are you still not convinced? Let’s take a look at five key areas where document management software can transform your business.

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Document management software creates a powerful database for your documents.Even if you have most of your files for your business in digital format, the standard search options on your computer are not really powerful. By adding keywords and tags to your documents, you can easily find the right document by searching by client, case, account number, and other metadata.

You’ll actually be able to search the full text within the document, too, so you won’t have to guess at titles when you’re actually in search of a single phrase or idea. All of this can add up to hours of reclaimed productivity.

It makes documents more secure. You can lock your paper records up in a file cabinet, but there’s no way to prove that no one is looking at them. Document management software can tell you exactly who accessed the document, when they accessed it, and why. Access rights can be determined on a number of levels, including groups, departments, and individual users.

  1. You can automate your workflow with document storage software.You probably already have a system for dealing with documents as they come into your business. Now imagine if that entire process happened on its own. There would be no need to waste time a resources making sure that a document was properly labeled and all appropriate parties were notified of its arrival. You could set up automation whereby a document, based on its source, was automatically filed in the correct location and the correct users were notified of their access to it.
  2. You can save money on storage. You can eliminate your offsite file storage location with document storage software. Even if you store all of your records onsite, you still need to pay for the space to keep them safe and dry. Get rid of the file storage room and give a deserving employee a fancy new office.
  3. It will be worth the time you spend scanning. Some people might be discouraged from investing a lot of time into a plan to scan all of their paper documents, but there’s no reason to think that it’s wasted time. In fact, many document management systems use optical character recognition, a powerful tool that allows the software to “read” the text on the document. By teaching the software to organize the scans based on language in the document, you’ll save time on the whole digitizing process.

6 more hardwoord flooring trends for 2016

Classy, timeless and warm, hardwood flooring never goes out of style. Here are six more flooring trends to look out for this year.

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Modern vintage

A pleasing mix of old and new, modern vintage flooring looks traditional, but is finished with cooler and more contemporary shades. Flat planks add to the vintage look. This style particularly suits cottage style homes or traditional red brick properties, and blends together the period aspects of the house with the more modern elements.

Natural looking

Modern homeowners are embracing simplicity and using identical flooring throughout their entire homes for a clean, pleasing finish that flows between rooms. Flooring is laid in the same way in every room, and finished with the same natural-looking products for a harmonious space. Using solid wood flooring throughout the home gives a warm, cosy, Scandinavian feel to the property.

British and European woods

People are becoming reluctant to import wooden floors from China and other far-off countries, and manufacturers that use local wood are pushing this aspect of their range as a big selling point. Consumers increasingly prefer their wood to come from relatively local regions. Reputable retailers such as UK Flooring Direct (http://www.ukflooringdirect.co.uk/solid-wood-flooring) will always be able to tell you where a particular range of flooring was manufactured.

White oak

Red oak has traditionally been more popular among homeowners, but there has been a huge shift towards white oak in recent years. White oak lends itself well to more modern interiors and looks great when finished with contemporary wood stains.

Hardwood throughout the home

It’s becoming increasingly common to find hardwood flooring in every room in the home, even kitchens. People are becoming wise to the fact that hardwood not only looks good, but is also durable and adds value to the property. House and Garden magazine explains how hardwood flooring can be a design feature in its own right, so it makes sense that modern homeowners are embracing it. It is a relatively simple way of updating the entire property, and most owners will find they recoup any expenditure on hardwood flooring once they sell their property.

Site-finished flooring

Site-finished flooring allows the fitter to customise any stains and finishes to perfectly suit the individual home, and ensures a pristine and professional finish.

Why a Gloucestershire Village Has Been Named the ‘Living Cotswolds’

Head to the large expanse of area in southern England spanning the counties of Wiltshire, Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Oxfordshire, Somerset and Gloucestershire – then you are within the Cotswolds region.

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The Cotswolds boundaries have expanded in recent times and are now approximately 25 miles across and 90 miles long. According to the Daily Mail, Oxfordshire County is the most popular destination when visitors head to the Cotswolds, but go further west and you will uncover a little gem nestling within the Cotswolds. Gloucestershire is beginning to earn its reputation as the ‘Living Cotswolds’, where residents carry on their everyday activities and as a visitor you really do feel like you are part of the community. In fact, it has been said that it doesn’t feel like a holiday base at all. The area is bustling, and the beautiful Cotswold stone houses are there to be lived in rather than used as holiday homes.

Living the Life

So if you have spent some time holidaying in Gloucestershire and enjoying what the area offers, with its quintessential English pubs and fabulous walking routes, then you may be considering relocating to the area to live the Cotswolds dream. If you you are considering renting a property rather than purchasing, your first port of call could be a Gloucester lettings agent who will guide you through the process.

But which one? Gloucestershire is a relatively large county, but if your dream is to be as near to the Cotswolds as you can, then you will require an agent that knows the surrounding area and can source the right property for you. Companies such as http://www.tgres.co.uk/about-us are perfectly placed to advise and find the perfect property for you, whether you are new to the area or have lived there all your life.

Which Part of Gloucestershire?

There are some stunning towns and villages in Gloucestershire. In fact, the flourishing small town of Nailsworth has recently been voted as one of the best places to live within the UK.

If you are looking for something larger, then try Cirencester, which still retains the Cotswold charm and character but has plenty to do as well.

Visit the area and decide for yourself. One thing is certain, however: you will come away with a desire to go back and stay!

How Will 3D Printing Affect Micro Molding?

Being able to create a physical object out of a three-dimensional digital image sounds like something that could only happen in science fiction. Yet it’s a reality that’s possible through additive manufacturing, widely known as 3D printing. The “printing” here isn’t the kind of traditional printing we’d normally think of where a printer deposits ink onto some kind of material. This printing process entails the creation of a tangible object out of some form or plastic or alloy, one layer at a time. Continue reading How Will 3D Printing Affect Micro Molding?

Print Is Not Dead! Build Your Brand Through Print

Many businesses seem to have forgotten about the power and the results than can be yielded through an effective print marketing campaign. It’s not just digital marketing methods which are bringing in results – print marketing is bringing in some incredible results too; not just in advertising, but in branding too.

Branding plays an important part in any business. If your brand is well established within its field, then it’s much easier to attract new customers, and launch new products and services. If people recognize your brand, they feel like they know a bit about your business and your principles, and therefor if you release a new product, the fact that it’s being released by your brand will lead past and potential customers to believe that this new product will stand up to the principles of your brand -something which a new company wouldn’t have. For example, if Microsoft release a new operating system then you can be sure millions of people will buy and use it, but if an unknown company released a new operating system, it wouldn’t get anywhere the same usage.

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I’ve put together some great examples of branded print materials to help you incorporate your own brand into your own materials, so that you too can benefit from the power of brand awareness.

When you’re designing your materials, remember that branding should be the main goal. You want to incorporate your brands image into the material as much as possible. If your logo makes use of certain fonts, use them throughout the materials if appropriate, the same goes for colours, if your logo has a certain colour or colour scheme, incorporate that through your materials. You want your materials to be instantly recognizable as something produced by your brand, so make sure your branding is highly visible!

Once you’ve finished your design and you’re on to looking for a website to print your new materials for you, then you can order here – NextDayFlyers. I have used a number of different printing companies in the past, and NDF have always proved themselves to be the best, time and time again.. They offer a rapid delivery time, very high quality prints, and quality checks by hand on each order. All of this ensures you get nothing but the very best results for your printed materials.

Author Bio: Rick Myers is a small business owner from the United States. He manages a variety of websites and enjoys blogging on topics where he can shed advice for start-ups and small businesses. When he’s not blogging he enjoys relaxing in the sunshine and making the most of the outdoors.

The do’s and don’ts of the office Christmas party

The office Christmas party can be fraught with pitfalls. To ensure you have a great time and don’t embarrass yourself, just keep these do’s and don’ts in mind.

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Do attend

Even if you are dreading the event, it is important to make an appearance if you possibly can to consolidate your position as part of the team. Stay for a reasonable time so you do not appear unappreciative or antisocial.

Don’t have too much to drink

Although Christmas corporate events are social occasions, they are still work events and your colleagues and superiors will be watching you. Even if other people are drinking a lot, just stick to your sensible limit so that you stay in control of what you do and say.

Do stick to the dress code

Find out what the dress code is and ensure that you comply with it. If you are not sure what is appropriate, chat to colleagues about what they will be wearing. You do not want to stand out from everyone else because your clothes are too casual or too dressy.

Don’t be a bore

Engaging someone in conversation is fine, but don’t expect them to talk to you all evening. People like to circulate at office Christmas parties, so don’t trap anyone in a conversation for longer than ten minutes.

Take the opportunity to mingle with colleagues who you may not often have an opportunity to talk to. Social networking at parties gives you the chance to make a good impression on senior colleagues or managers.

Don’t spread gossip

Rumours and gossip are often rife at Christmas parties, but it is never a good idea to join in or to provide any fuel for the stories. Instead, try to steer the conversation toward more general topics such as holidays or families. Be careful not to confess anything to colleagues that you will regret back in the office.

Do try to include everyone

If you are talking to someone and are ready to move on, don’t leave the person standing alone. Instead, try to introduce them to someone else before you go. If you are responsible for arranging Christmas corporate work nights out, AOL UK provides tips on planning a successful function.

Do say thank you

Always send an email expressing your appreciation the day after the party.