Integration Insider

April 2012

Avoid Hurting Your Business with Good Intentions

In business, having good intentions isn't always in everyone's best interest. In a recent article from Fortune, The good intentions that will kill your business, they bring up a novel concept to get you to change your thinking.

As an example there is a sign hanging in some kitchens that reads "You have two choices for dinner: Take It or Leave It". You may wonder what that phrase has to do with business since we are accustomed to doing whatever it takes to please the customer. Follow the original train of thought for just a minute. If there was a big group of people and you asked all of them what they wanted to eat you are likely to receive as many different requests as there are people in the group. You could spend all kinds of effort trying to please everyone and in the process spread yourself so thin that you don't do a good job for anyone. On the other hand, if you tell everyone that you are making your specialty there is a good chance that you will end up pleasing most, if not all of the people because they knew what they were getting and you were able to focus your energy into what you do best.

This is just an example of one way you can hurt your business by trying to please everyone. In the end you will just frustrate your customers. Take a minute and think about what you are doing that could be hurting your company. You may be surprised that the problems are coming from your solutions.


Michael Ciabattari


Microsoft Silver Certified  

How to Add Extra Time to Your Day and Go Home Early

Have you ever wondered why you bother to use a planner because your "to do" list gets messed up each day? The things you intended to accomplish got pushed aside for new projects and you find yourself wondering how to get more out of your already over-booked day. It's no wonder that you may feel exhausted and unaccomplished at the end of the work day.

One of the biggest problems with checking things off the daily to-do list is being distracted. If you multi-task too much you aren't giving full attention to the task at hand, which means you are spending more time completing the several tasks you are juggling at the same time. Instead of sending off emails while on a conference call or writing reports while in a meeting, focus on one activity and complete the second activity afterwards. Tony Schwartz offers other time-saving tasks in "The Magic of Doing One Thing at a Time" posted on Harvard Business Review. He suggests that putting dedicated focus on one activity at a time, then taking a scheduled break between tasks, will encourage better strategic and creative thinking. Even short brain-breaks will let you recharge creative juices, making you fresher for the next task at hand.

Stop jumping from emails to text to phone calls to meetings. The constant running from task to task is not only draining, it's counterproductive. Finish one task at a time and by the end of the day, you'll have accomplished more, feel energetic, and you won't have to work late.

The Big Easy!

No, we're not referring to New Orleans although that city is typically known by the same nickname. The Big Easy Offer 8 gives you rebates on Microsoft software and services that fit your needs. For every qualifying software license you purchase, Microsoft pays you partner subsidy funds that can be used with an eligible Microsoft partner of your choice (such as us) to help with the implementation of Microsoft software licenses and associated services or toward the purchase of additional software licenses.

Calculate your subsidy at Microsoft Incentives or contact us to find out which products qualify for the rebate.

NOTE: This offer is good for qualifying purchases made between March 5, 2012 and June 30, 2012 from Authorized Selling Partners. Microsoft reserves the right to cancel or extend this promotion at any time in its sole discretion with fifteen (15) days' notice. Notice will be provided only at http://www.microsoftincentives.com/BigEasy. No individual notice will be provided if the offer is cancelled or extended. Please check http://www.microsoftincentives.com/BigEasy for offer availability before purchasing.

In This Issue
How to Add Extra Time to Your Day and Go Home Early
The Big Easy Offer!
The Benefits of Microsoft SharePoint and Windows Azure
The SharePoint Solution
The Risks that Lead to Corporate Failure - Are You Next?
Microsoft Has Your Back - a Troubleshooting Resource for Office 365
Tips and Tricks
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Did you know the World Wide Web is not the same thing as the Internet? The Internet is a huge network of networks that links computers together using a range of wires and wireless technologies all over the world. The World Wide Web is a collection of linked pages that are accessed by using the Internet and a web browser.


According to a study done by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, every year more than 86,000 falls that require emergency room care are caused by dogs and cats! (Source: Booyahfacts.com)


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Document Imaging is for Work, Paper is for Play. IDT's Digital Document Scanning & Conversion Services can quickly reduce your paper document backlog.

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The Benefits of Microsoft SharePoint and Windows Azure

What's better than Microsoft SharePoint? Microsoft SharePoint combined with the power and flexibility of Windows Azure. You are likely familiar with Microsoft SharePoint and its capabilities, but you may not be as familiar with Windows Azure and how Microsoft SharePoint can benefit from being paired together with it. Some of the biggest advantages of using a common platform like Windows Azure to manage your data are:

  • Increased capacity when working with large amounts of data helping the processing speed of your SQL server.
  • Microsoft SharePoint is great for storing files and the more people that store files, the more capacity you need. By offloading file storage to SQL Azure you can seamlessly access files while maintaining high performance by not overloading your own servers.
  • You can securely store your data locally and execute the various solutions in an Azure environment which allows you to maintain a secure local environment.

For more information on these advantages and other you can read this great blog post You Complete Me Says SharePoint to Windows Azure. If you are interested in how the Microsoft SharePoint and Windows Azure integration could be implemented for your document management needs please contact John Dobbins at john.dobbins@idtconsulting.com or give us a call at 630.875.1100.

The SharePoint Solution

We all wear different hats and often carry different titles depending on the task at hand. The same idea applies to users of software. Information Worker is the most-used title that has been given to anyone who works on and uses software. This term is used frequently and interchanged with more specific terms that may actually be more applicable to the tasks you perform.

A site owner or administrator manages software or site collections or the people who manage those collections. They are usually responsible for site content, the big picture message, and usability of the sites. Security, permissions for accessing the sites, and working with site designers are their main tasks. They work on the big picture, so to speak.

The content creator is the person who updates documents or other site content. They don't usually work on the type of data that is used but update and process data on the sites.

The data entry specialist, obviously, refers to the person who enters or processes data. Easy to use forms help them get the data into the site, and built-in reporting features help them export the data for use by themselves or colleagues.

Whether you are the site administrator, content creator, or work on the data entry end of the spectrum, Microsoft has created this SharePoint 2010 website containing all the information you need to get the most out of your Microsoft SharePoint experience, regardless of which hat you are wearing.

The Risks that Lead to Corporate Failure - Are You Next?

Each year we hear about a major corporation facing some level of bankruptcy or financial failure. When our economy experienced a significant crisis a few years back, the collapse caused a wide ranging ripple effect which strained all types of businesses including banks, automotive, and especially the smaller mom-and-pop businesses. The risks facing businesses of all sizes do not just stem from economic insecurities or fluctuations. What can bring a business down more often comes from internal cracks in the foundations of these corporations. Paul Hopkin shares lessons learned from some of the biggest corporate failures in his article "Understanding the causes of corporate failure" posted in CGMA Magazine.

Hopkin suggests that unqualified and ineffective boards can be a great risk to the success of a corporation. Boards that just shuffle papers, don't have proper training or experience, or don't question actions are at the highest risk of letting things slip. He cited an example of a board director who didn't have refinery experience at the time of a major refinery explosion. What you don't know can hurt you, your employees, and your customers, as well as your business.

Learning how corporations fail can teach important lessons regarding our own businesses. Understanding the potential implications of our actions, as well as our inactions, could reduce our own risk for corporate failure. Read Hopkin's article and contact contact john.dobbins@idtconsulting.com or call us at 630.875.1100 for more information on how to reduce the risk within your own corporation.

Microsoft Has Your Back - a Troubleshooting Resource for Office 365

As busy as our days can be in this 24/7 world, we don't have time to try to figure out why our software isn't working or how to do something new with our software. Using precious time to click buttons and try to work through software issues means that it will take us longer to get our work completed. In this Office 365 Blog: Troubleshooting Tool and Other Technical Resources for Office 365, Microsoft describes great time-saving resources for Office 365 users that can answer your software questions quicker and get you back to work.

The new Troubleshooting Tool will solve your Office 365 questions and all you need to do is answer four questions. Based on your answers, the Troubleshooting Tool will direct you to the links that are related to the issues you are experiencing. Get real answers from real users in the Office 365 Community - a page full of common questions and answers from other Office 365 users. If you have more technical questions, visit the Office 365 Technical Blog for answers from the Microsoft engineers. Look up more information about Office 365 with an easy search function on the Forums & Wikis pages.

Unless you're in IT, your day is probably better spent tacking your projects at hand. Don't let software challenges slow you down. Microsoft's Office 365 support solutions can answer your software questions and keep you on task.

Tips and Tricks

Smart Phone Screen Going Blank?

This may seem like one of those no brainer tips but it will make you say "why didn't I think of that"? If you use a smartphone you are probably aware that when you are talking on it while holding it to your ear the screen goes blank and locks to save battery and keep your ear from accidently hanging up. This is a great design feature in modern smartphones. Where the feature can cause a problem is if you are using a screen protector or certain protective cases. Hidden behind the face are proximity sensors that trigger the screen to go blank and lock. If your screen protector has started to lift or your case inadvertently covers these sensors you will get some unexpected behavior. The quick fix is to clean under the screen protector and reapply or replace to make sure it lays flat. If it is your case that is causing the interference then make sure that it is designed for your phone model and that the positioning hasn't shifted to cover the sensor. So the next time your phone is behaving oddly give this tip a try to see if it fixes it.

Microsoft Outlook 2010 Searching Pointers

If you have ever tried to manually find an email message in Microsoft Outlook you know that can be a challenge. Even if you have used the Search Inbox function at the top of list of email messages, it can still be difficult to find the email you are looking for. The problem with using too generic of a search term is it will give you too many results. If you do use the search function in Outlook 2010 you will notice that when you click in the search field that the Menu Ribbon changes to show Search Tools. The Refine section has commonly listed filters like from, has attachment, and a date function to limit your results. By using just a few additional search criteria you will be able to quickly find your results.

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.