With a company name that sounds more like a purebred, high-performance sports car than an IT consulting firm, eMazzanti Technologies is all about delivering powerful solutions in the most efficient manner possible. The Hoboken, N.J., firm is located in one of the most densely populated - and competitive - regions in the U.S. It provides IT consulting services for businesses ranging from home offices to multinational corporations throughout the New York metropolitan area and abroad.
Practical Productivity – Being Productive Anywhere!
By Jane Cage, COO
I’ve always worked beyond normal business hours. Twenty years ago that meant going back to the office after dinner if I needed access to files that were on our network. In those early days, there was no internet, no connection to the office and having a computer at home was a luxury that few people could afford – including me.
Fast forward – it’s Sunday night, I’m sitting in the den. There is an HD movie on TV. I’ve just gotten a cup of coffee, let the dog in, and if my timing is right, the accounts receivable batch that I’ve started posting will have just finished. I can look at my network drive for the excel spreadsheet that I need and then send a report to my printer at work so that it’s there when I get to work in the morning. And to think I’m doing everything from my laptop. Maybe I don’t need to go to the office after all . . . well, not really.
So – what is it that makes this quantum leap in productivity possible? Although the internet and the laptop play important roles, what really makes me productive is my secure connection to the office network. You may have heard of it as a VPN (Virtual Private Network) connection. How does it work? I authenticate to the office using information and a set of protocols that only someone who belongs inside our network would know. The most common way to make the physical connection is through a firewall. After that, you need to make contact with your server, your desktop or both. Small Business Server customers are in luck – with a secure connection in place you have all the software you need to make a connection to your office computer. At our office, we also use a special server called a terminal server so that we have access to every network resource even if we only have a laptop that we take home.
Granted, building a secure connection to your office may cost more than adding a second monitor to your computer or using One Note to store your miscellaneous materials. However, when I think about what makes me truly productive in today’s workplace, I can’t think of a feature I use more than this one. The world has changed and our customers – both internal and external – expect a different level of access and response than they did just a few years ago. I also see the difference it has made in our own office and for our customers when employees have the flexibility and capability to work from home when necessary.
Being able to reach my office resources when I travel has made a huge difference as well. Even though I carry a SmartPhone (look for that in a later issue!), I still need to open spreadsheets, check our time and billing software or answer an accounting question for an employee who is at a standstill until I can help.
To paraphrase the popular commercials of today: installing a firewall with secure access – a few hundred dollars; installing a terminal server if necessary – maybe a few thousand dollars – but having access to the information that you need to run your business and make decisions while you sit in front of your fireplace or in a hotel room – well, that’s priceless. You may believe that it is a luxury – but I believe it’s a luxurious necessity.