In This Issue
How to Shrink Your IT Spend with SaaS in 2012
Start Off The New Year Strong And Organized
Do you drive your business or does your business drive you?
Accounting Trends To Watch For 2012
Looking at your Risk Assement
Create Customer Satisfaction with These 6 Social Media Trends
First and Only Major Cloud Solution to Meet Data and Security Standards
Using Document Storage In The Cloud
Tips and Tricks
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Fun Facts

According to Barclays Capital, U.S. mobile commerce sales- purchases made on smartphones and tablets- hit $5.3 billion in 2011, up 83% from the year before.


Bar codes were invented by Bernard Silver and Norman Woodland in 1948. Their system used light to read a set of concentric circles, but they had to wait two decades before the advent of computers and lasers made their system practical. However, the bar code system in use today is the Universal Product Code (UPC), introduced by IBM in 1973. The first bar coded item sold was a pack of gum in 1974.


Gartner forecasts that worldwide IT spending to be $3.8 trillion in 2012, a 3.7% increase over 2011. IT spending includes computing hardware, enterprise software and IT services.


"The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax." - Albert Einstein

Integration Insider

January 2012

Strategy Mistakes to Avoid

As you begin 2012 it is important to have plans in place to achieve a successful year. Too often strategy plans are devised after the fact. As we know, it's hard to set aside the time to strategize, which can be a mistake. In a recent blog post from Harvard Business Review the author, Joan Magretta, describes 5 mistakes managers repeat time and time again. We found as we begin a new year that these were important insights to share with you. Here are two strategy mistakes that are common:

  1. Confusing competitive advantage with "what you're good at." Doing the same thing that someone else is doing better isn't always the best path. What you should be trying to achieve is something better because you are doing it different.
  2. Pursuing size above all else, because if you're the biggest, you'll be more profitable. The example used in the blog article is the automotive industry. General Motors, one of the biggest car companies in the world, barely escaped bankruptcy. On the flip side you have BMW who may have 10% of the market, yet has had above average returns for the past decade.

This is just a sample of what this article has to offer. To learn more about these mistakes and 3 others you can read this article from HBR.org titled Five Common Strategy Mistakes.

We wish you great sucess in 2012!


Michael Ciabattari
Microsoft Silver Certified   
How to Shrink Your IT Spend with SaaS in 2012

As SaaS (Software as a Service) becomes a viable alternative to buying or leasing enterprise software, your expenditures for IT (Information Technology) are going to change how you plan your budget. For instance, if you decided to pursue the route of SaaS you no longer have the cost of acquiring hardware and maintaining servers. Do we have your attention now? To find out more about how you can benefit from switching to the pay as you go model you can read this blog post How to Shrink Your IT Spend with SaaS in 2012.

Start Off The New Year Strong And Organized With Microsoft Dynamics® CRM

Providing exceptional customer service is what sets you above your competitors and the reason that many businesses are turning to powerful Microsoft Dynamics® CRM (customer relationship management) software. Whether you are just getting started or have been using it for years, refresh your skills by visiting the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Resource Center and review some great tips for optimizing your CRM experience.

In 9 steps to get started with customer service, you'll find step-by-step instructions including how to follow a case from call to closure, understanding the queue, and using the Reports feature to track your work. You can use Microsoft Dynamics CRM to organize your clients and communications, share your schedule, and track projects. This level of organization and tracking will ensure that your customers are getting your full attention every step of the way.

Using Microsoft Dynamics CRM to its fullest potential will help you continue to provide unsurpassed customer service and develop customer loyalty. Check out the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Resource Center for more information.

Do you drive your business or does your business drive you?

Making business decisions when you don't have all the information is like driving in the dark without your lights on. It's dangerous and you have no control. Having information at your fingertips that's readable and easy to use is critical for your organization's success.

Business Analyzer for Microsoft Dynamics® GP is a powerful solution that gives you greater control of your business. Dynamic reporting gives you visibility and insight into how your business is performing. You get real time important metrics and you can easily drill down to specific detail to help you make key business decisions. You get to drive with your lights on.

To see a short demo of Business Analyzer for Microsoft Dynamics GP click here: http://mediadl.microsoft.com/mediadl/www/d/dynamics/demo-videos/Dynamics_GP_Greater_Control_with_the_Business_Analyzer.wmv

Accounting Trends To Watch For 2012

The Journal of Accounting reached out to keynote speakers from this years' AICPA's Practitioners Symposium/TECH+ Conference to chat about tech trends for CPAs (Certified Public Accountants). Conversation focused on emerging Cloud services and apps aimed at accounting issues.

With so much business management technology available today, companies can really pick and choose what software to run on-site and what to host off-site or in the Cloud.

One of the biggest trends continues to be the explosion of apps for mobile devices. Adding business capabilities to tablets and mobile phones will further improve communication and productivity. For example, Concur has introduced Breeze, a cloud-based expense reporting app that can run on tablets and Smartphones. More business-friendly apps that make our jobs easier, like Apple's Siri for the iPhone4s, are expected to be introduced as the year goes by.

Is too much cash on your risk radar screen?

Is IT security, global expansion and excess cash on top of your list of concerns for this year? I'll bet you're thinking 'yeah right, since when is too much cash an issue?' According to the Corporate Executive Board (CEB) this truly is one of the top 10 areas of risk for 2012. Other surprising additions to this list are social media and corporate culture. It's an interesting list and quite telling of how times have changed since 2008. Follow this link to read this insightful risk management article.http://www3.cfo.com/article/2011/11/risk-management_risk-assessments-radar-screen-2012-

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Create Customer Satisfaction with These 6 Social Media Trends

Like many others, you probably spent more time on social media in 2011 than in previous years. Businesses are realizing that social media can influence sales and customer satisfaction and are looking for ways to get involved. David Armano discusses "Six social media trends for 2012" in his blog on Harvard Business Review. Two of Armano's trends include:

  1. Social Sharing - Sears is one example of a company using direct links on their website to post or tweet opinions of their products. Whether selling a product or service, allowing customers to immediately share their experience with friends and family is a fast way to get noticed.
  2. Gamification Nation - Foursquare uses points and badges for checking in at destinations with this app. Many businesses are adding coupons or discounts to that service to attract users to visit and check in at their business. Competition and game-like features keeps apps and their social networks connected.

Social media continues to become a powerhouse force in daily life. Get linked to your customers using social media and see how it can generate sales and build customer loyalty.

Office 365 First and Only Major Cloud Solution to Meet Data and Security Standards

When you store information in the cloud you don't really know where it goes off to. In the past, data was more easily monitored because it was in the server closet down the hall. This made it relatively easy to comply with data privacy and security standards. With more emphasis being placed on incorporating cloud offerings into your business strategy, the concern about your data is real. Data laws have made many cloud offerings on the market impossible to use and remain in compliance. In December 2011 Microsoft published a press release stating that Office 365 is the first and only major cloud-based platform to offer leading privacy and security standards. In connection with the press release they have also revised the Office 365 Trust Center website (http://trust.office365.com to be more accessible and easier to understand. The press release also explains the compliance updates that you can learn about here: Office 365 Becomes First and Only Major Cloud Productivity Service to Comply With Leading EU and U.S. Standards for Data Protection and Security

If the security and privacy improvements of this product have you interested in learning how Microsoft Office 365 would work for you, let us help you get started with a tailored trial. Contact us at 630-875-1100 or john.dobbins@idtconsulting.com.

Using Document Storage In The Cloud

One way companies are getting their feet wet using cloud-computing is with document storage. Storing company documents using applications like Microsoft Office 365, and others is an easy and fairly low-risk way to see how the cloud works. Sandra Gittlen points out in her blog "Company Docs in the Cloud: the Risks and Rewards" published on CIO.com that document storage in the cloud can save IT department time and expense with infrastructure to procure and maintain, it encourages collaboration, and provides data to employees using nearly any device when in or out of the office.

To make document storage safer though, Gittlen suggests putting policies in place for security and protection of corporate data. Limit the type of document stored in the cloud to protect the most sensitive data. Investigate your provider to see what level of security they can guarantee to protect against data loss and outages. Cloud service providers should also have backup and disaster recovery procedures in place. Make sure that you can also retrieve that data if your employee is on vacation or has left the company.

Document storage can be a cost-effective and productive way to test-drive cloud-computing options. Just like any other change involving IT products or services, it is wise to evaluate the risks and rewards before jumping into new technology feet first.

Tips and Tricks

Frequent Traveler?

Are you a frequent traveler and have reward programs set up with multiple airlines? If so, you may want to consider signing up for MileWise. On this site you can not only put all of your reward numbers in one place, with one search request you can see all the ways to pay for a flight either by cash, miles or points you have accumulated and the best airline for you to take. Once you set-up your profile with your preferences and accounts it will also display the rewards you will earn, your current status, and if you are eligible for cabin bonuses. Happy travels!

Jump Lists (it's more useful than it sounds)

You probably haven't heard of Jump Lists before so here a quick education to a handy little tool. A jump list is the menu that comes up when you right click on an icon in your taskbar. For instance, if you right click on the Internet Explorer icon you will see a list of frequent websites you visit which you can click on, or you can open a new tab. Give it a try on different programs and you may be surprised at quick options that are available to you at your clicking fingertips.

The companies of IDT (Integrated Document Technologies, Inc.) support small, mid-market and enterprise firms in achieving maximum efficiency by offering fully integrated ECM, ERP and CRM solutions.


Founded in 1992, IDT's initial focus was helping companies effectively apply automated enterprise content management solutions to eliminate paper and better manage every business transaction. With the inception of IDT Consulting in 2001, the company offers ERP and CRM solutions and in-depth knowledge of how financial systems work and how to streamline the accounting process. Today, IDT Consulting is a Silver Certified Microsoft Partner specializing in Dynamics GP, Dynamics CRM, and Microsoft SharePoint. Visit our website at www.idtconsulting.com.