• ChannelTrends: Top 5 Solution Provider Opportunities for 2013

    by Brian Sherman  | January 03, 2013
    While many may not have switched their calendars yet, 2013 is officially here. Before all the New Year’s resolutions have either been forgotten or broken, make sure to take time to review what went well in 2012 and what needs to change to make the next year more successful. What challenges and opportunities do you foresee? In reviewing a similar blog post I wrote around this same time last year, it’s interesting to note the similarities between 2012 and 2013. While technology conti ...
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  • ChannelTrends: How 'Advancing Women in IT' Will Help the Industry Thrive

    by Brian Sherman  | December 18, 2012
    The IT community is rich with career opportunities, despite dismal overall job growth projections and many companies continuing to struggle with economic challenges. There seems to be no shortage of open positions in IT for the properly prepared individual, whether their skills are more technology-oriented or focused on the business side. As the business community relies more and more on IT to run and improve their operations, demand for qualified and trainable professionals will continue to gro ...
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  • ChannelTrends: Get the Advanced Financial Skills Needed to Grow an MSP Business

    by Brian Sherman  | December 10, 2012
    The biggest obstacle those building new businesses or practices face is not their creation and launch. No, the most daunting issue new business owners struggle with is how to manage and perfect their back office operations. Upfront costs and planned expenses are much easier to project on paper than when the doors are open and the organization is in full swing.That’s especially true in a managed services business. Few IT professionals have the financial and general management training or experien ...
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  • ChannelTrends: How to Re-engineer IT Customer Support for Long-Term Success

    by Brian Sherman  | December 03, 2012
    In today’s economic environment, IT organizations have to continually reassess the way they do business, making necessary changes to best serve their clients and stay ahead of their rivals. With the rapid advances in technology and delivery systems, the challenges here are escalating more quickly than the opportunities they bring, making staffing service desks and properly training employees a particularly difficult task.Can an IT services company afford to run its operations the same way today ...
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  • ChannelTrends: Are Your Customers Properly Protected on Cyber Monday?

    by Brian Sherman  | November 26, 2012
    On the Monday after Thanksgiving, also known as Cyber Monday, online retailers offer deep discounts to attract customers. The number of online transactions completed today may not top the brick-and-mortar retail sales of Black Friday, but that gap continues to close with each passing year. A growing number of consumers are choosing the Internet over the annual trek to the mall, preferring the comfort of shopping from their own home or office over the hustle and bustle of the mall and other store ...
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  • ChannelTrends: Forecasting the Risks and Potential of Selling Cloud

    by Brian Sherman  | November 19, 2012
    According to some industry experts, cloud computing is both the biggest threat and largest opportunity facing the IT channel. Though that prediction may be confusing, there is a lot of truth in it, and it should sound an alarm for every single solution provider. The debate on the pros and cons of cloud services has been raging for quite some time, but few dispute that the delivery model is here to stay and everyone in the industry will have to learn to adapt. Each company needs to understand clo ...
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  • ChannelTrends: To Improve and Succeed, IT Companies Must Know Themselves

    by Brian Sherman  | November 05, 2012
    It’s a challenge to build a successful company into a viable long-term entity. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, more than 50 percent of small businesses fail in their first five years, while two-thirds of organizations close their doors before celebrating a ten-year anniversary. The reasons are numerous; from cash flow issues or the departure of a key employee to planned obsolescence and mergers.These challenges are felt by IT services businesses, especially given the complex ...
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  • ChannelTrends: Identify Your Management Skill Set – and How an IT Peer Group Can Support It

    by Brian Sherman  | October 29, 2012
    You don’t need to hold an MBA or be a CPA to run an IT channel organization, though either probably helps. Few solution providers have a formal education in business, human resources or finance, yet many manage dozens – perhaps even hundreds or thousands – of highly skilled employees. Acquiring office skills and insight isn’t easy for many tech-oriented individuals, just as gaining computer and network technology expertise would likely be no simple task for most executives.Not to underestimate a ...
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  • ChannelTrends: Expand Your Mindset and Revenue with an International Perspective

    by Brian Sherman  | October 22, 2012
    Like it or not, today’s business is driven by the world economy. World markets and international manufacturing have a profound effect on literally everything we buy and sell, and that interconnect is sure to grow in the future, as companies and countries leverage their combined resources. There are as typically more similarities than differences in the organizational and technology issues facing businesses in each region, with the legislation and culture the biggest variables.The IT channel is k ...
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  • ChannelTrends: How to Sell the Full Business Benefits of Unified Communications

    by Brian Sherman  | October 12, 2012
    Have you been in the market for a new vehicle lately or just checked out the latest cars on display at the dealership? If so, you likely saw vehicles that incorporate some cutting edge communications systems—including General Motors’ OnStar, Ford’s SYNC and Hyundai’s BlueLink. While these packages are tailored to the everyday needs of the average driver, tying in apps and voice control options to improve safety and convenience, they also increase productivity for mobile workers.These computer-dr ...
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