The Connection, Inc Blog

The Connection, Inc has been serving the New Jersey area since 1992, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

4 Tips to Help You Make Practical IT Decisions

4 Tips to Help You Make Practical IT Decisions

When you run a business, solid decision making is crucial to achieving success. This goes from hiring and managing your staff, choosing the right prospects, supporting your customers, and procuring tools and resources that make your business possible. Today, technology is not only important, it is a major consideration when determining your yearly budgets. Let’s go through a couple of tips on how to make the best technology decisions for your company.

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Cybersecurity is Even More Important when Working Remotely

Cybersecurity is Even More Important when Working Remotely

Unfortunately, cybersecurity is a lot easier to reinforce in the office than it is when your team members are working remotely—and even then, it can be a serious challenge to maintain. However, let’s focus on the remote worker’s situation for a few moments and review a few best practices that can help a remote worker stay secure.

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Why It’s a Bad Idea to Use Your Work Email for Personal Accounts

Why It’s a Bad Idea to Use Your Work Email for Personal Accounts

While we’re all for efficiency, there are some boundaries that should not be crossed for everyone’s benefit. Take, for instance, the email you use to subscribe to online services. While it may be tempting (or, for some people, automatic) to use your work email address when you sign up for, say, your Netflix account or an online merchant, we wanted to discuss why this is a bad habit to get into that could have lasting consequences.

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Using Your Voice to Type in Microsoft Word

Using Your Voice to Type in Microsoft Word

Typing on your keyboard is something that you do every day, but sometimes you just don’t want to do it. You can give your hands a break and use Microsoft Word’s dictation feature; this lets you use your voice to write in the software. Let’s go over how you might use the feature on a desktop, web browser, or mobile device.

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What are My Options for Connecting a Second Monitor?

What are My Options for Connecting a Second Monitor?

Laptops are pretty great, I think we can all agree, simply due to their portability. Having said that, the one-screen situation that laptops bring with them can certainly get in the way of productivity—particularly for those who are used to using more than one. Let’s discuss why an additional display is so helpful, and what your options may be for hooking one up to your laptop.

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Tip of the Week: Stop Overworking from Home

Tip of the Week: Stop Overworking from Home

It’s quite possible for employees to overwork themselves, even in a remote environment. Let’s take a look at some ways that you can minimize remote overwork for your employees, especially as the boundaries typically set in place by the morning commute are eroded and work/life balance blurs.

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Strategies for Training on New Technology

Strategies for Training on New Technology

You may have been in a position where you tried to implement a technology solution in the past only to find that your staff is simply not responsive to it in any capacity. Maybe they do not see the value in the solution, or they do not understand what issues the solution resolves for your organization. To help you instill the correct mindset in your employees regarding technology, here are some training tips!

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Additional Considerations for Your Business’ Data Backup Strategy

Additional Considerations for Your Business’ Data Backup Strategy

We routinely discuss the importance of a comprehensive data backup strategy. With so many workforces incorporating remote work into their operations, making such preparations is extremely important. Let’s go over some of the key steps that you need to take to secure your business’ data from loss.

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The Power Button is Capable of More Than On/Off

The Power Button is Capable of More Than On/Off

If you’ve ever used technology, the power button has had a pretty consistent appearance, and an even more consistent use. However, there’s a reason that the power symbol we’re so familiar with looks the way it does. Furthermore, there’s more that the power button can ultimately do.

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If You Haven’t Already, It’s Time to Thoroughly Document Your Business IT

If You Haven’t Already, It’s Time to Thoroughly Document Your Business IT

A business' technology is by all measures a part of its inventory, and as such, it needs to be tracked. Let’s consider why in more detail, and how to do so properly.

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Tip of the Week: Taking You Through Embedding a Video with PowerPoint

Tip of the Week: Taking You Through Embedding a Video with PowerPoint

When looking to present an idea, the first two options people think of are often to use a video, or to use a slideshow (typically, citing Microsoft PowerPoint). Our question is, why pick? Let’s go over how simple it is to embed a YouTube video right into your next PowerPoint presentation whether you’re using PowerPoint 365 or PowerPoint 2016.

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Tip of the Week: Sign a PDF in Windows

Tip of the Week: Sign a PDF in Windows

PDFs have been around for a while and they have become an extremely useful file format for business. One of the best features of the PDF is that it is useful for securing signatures so that contracts can be handled over the Internet. Today, we’ll go over how you go about signing a PDF in Windows.

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Tip of the Week: Five Ways to Manage Your Email Effectively

Tip of the Week: Five Ways to Manage Your Email Effectively

Email—it’s a business tool that we all use and rely on, but (if we’re being honest) it can be a pain to manage properly. Unfortunately, this can also depreciate the value of the solution to its users. To help prevent these problems, we wanted to share a few tips to assist you with your email management.

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Tip of the Week: How to Implement Smarter Scheduling

Tip of the Week: How to Implement Smarter Scheduling

If your business is like most, you and your team likely rely on a schedule to keep your processes moving along efficiently… while also ensuring that everyone has something to work on at any time. However, this is often easier said than done, which is why there are now cloud-based software options that make your scheduling efforts a little smarter.

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A Brief Guide to Leading a Company During COVID-19

A Brief Guide to Leading a Company During COVID-19

Chances are your business has been affected by COVID-19. For those companies who had to shut down their operations, and are in the process of opening back up; or, the business that moved operations out of their location and had their employees work remotely and are recalling their employees, this situation is unprecedented. This month, we thought we would take a look at some of the factors surrounding this process, and how they will affect your staff.

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Tip of the Week: Why Having an Extra Workstation is Worth It

Tip of the Week: Why Having an Extra Workstation is Worth It

For every business, it’s essential to be prepared for any unforeseen problems that can disrupt day-to-day operations. One easy way to do this is by keeping an extra workstation on hand.


Having a spare PC is actually a common recommendation for many business continuity plans. The purpose is to have a terminal ready to go that your employees can use for whenever their regular workstation must undergo repairs. Otherwise, they might just stand around with nothing to do, which adds up to a lot of lost productivity.

Considering how much money results from downtime, having an extra workstation on hand is well worth the expense. Also, it’s not like your spare PC has to be a state-of-the-art machine. In fact, a basic computer having just enough resources to run your mission-critical applications should do the trick.

Obtaining a spare PC doesn’t have to be difficult. If you’re a growing company that’s regularly refreshing your hardware, then it’s simply a matter of storing away an older PC that’s been replaced--assuming that it’s still in good working order and can perform the minimum job requirements.

If, on the other hand, you’re a newer company that hasn’t yet gone through a hardware refresh, then you’ll likely have to purchase a new computer in order to have an extra one on hand. Just keep in mind that you don’t have to buy anything fancy. After all, you just need a spare PC.

While we’re on the subject of swapping out workstations, let this scenario serve as a reminder of why it’s best to store all work-related files and applications over a company server or cloud storage solution. That way, all one would have to do in order to keep the project moving forward, is simply unplug one computer and swap it out for another. Plus, if your applications are running over the network, then the terminal needed to access the software would only have to be something basic and affordable, like a thin client.

Alternatively, going with BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) may suffice in your time of hardware repair. If an employee can use their own mobile device, like a laptop, to access the network and get work done, then pulling their workstation in order to fix it shouldn’t hinder operations. However, if you go this route, you’ll want to make sure that proper security measures have first been implemented before allowing a personal device to access company files. Also, even if you allow for BYOD in your office, it’s still a good idea to have a spare PC on hand.

At the end of the day, having an extra workstation comes with many benefits, and it’s just one of the many precautions you can take to ensure that operations will continue while downed technology is getting repaired or replaced. For more tips on how to protect your assets with a bulletproof business continuity plan, give The Connection, Inc a call at (732) 291-5938.

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Tip of the Week: 4 Ways to Get Rest and Avoid Burnout

Tip of the Week: 4 Ways to Get Rest and Avoid Burnout

Let’s be honest; when was the last time you seriously went out of your way to take a day off from work? The corporate business environment often leads both business owners and normal office workers to overindulge themselves in their work. Plus, the mobile-first business model isn’t making it any easier to take time off, as you’re connected to the office no matter what. However, science is proving that it’s not just beneficial, but practically necessary, to take time off on occasion.

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Tip of the Week: 3 PC Maintenance Tips Every User Should Know

Tip of the Week: 3 PC Maintenance Tips Every User Should Know

Owning any piece of technology in today’s day and age is like a playing with fire. While it’s a great tool that has allowed civilization to grow and make great strides toward a better future, there’s also significant risk involved with owning such an expensive piece of technology. If it breaks down on you, you’ll be left with both a dent in your pocket and possibly even a chunk of your data missing. Here are three ways that even the average PC user can improve the performance of their technology and extend its life cycle considerably.


Keep it Clean
Keeping your PC clean is important to prolong its life cycle, as dust can build up and prevent critical airflow. Furthermore, when airflow is limited, heat can build up within your machine, which could damage the components and lead to overheating. Just be sure to keep your workspace clean and to keep the fan vents clear of obstruction, and you should be fine.

Monitor RAM Usage
RAM is one of those things in your PC that you don’t know you need more of until it’s already an inconvenience. Basically, it’s the memory in your computer that allows you to perform multiple tasks at the same time. If your PC only has 2GB of RAM in it, good luck having multiple videos open or performing other resource-intensive tasks. If your computer is running slower than normal, you can use your Task Manager app to see where your PC’s resources are being eaten up. This might hint that your machine has a security problem, too, so address any issues by contacting your IT service provider.

Install Updates and Patches
It’s important that you implement the latest patches and security updates. As without them, you’re leaving your devices exposed to potential security threats. Hackers are always creating new ways to infiltrate networks and infect systems with their malware, and many of these problems can be resolved by simply keeping your devices as up-to-date as possible. It’s a simple way to ensure that your devices won’t be compromised by developing threats.

If you’re a business owner, you’ll notice that these are also three tips that we would suggest for you to keep your IT equipment in working in proper working order. After all, your organization depends on it to stay running efficiently, so you’re only helping yourself by taking good care of your technology. If you’d rather just not worry about your technology maintenance, The Connection, Inc can handle this responsibility for you. Our managed IT services are designed to provide New Jersey businesses the hands-off technology maintenance you need to ease your workday and concentrate on your business.

To learn more, reach out to us at (732) 291-5938.

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Tip of the Week: 7 Easy Ways to Encourage Collaboration in the Workplace

Tip of the Week: 7 Easy Ways to Encourage Collaboration in the Workplace

One of the most effective methods to boost employee productivity is to encourage your workforce to work together in order to achieve their goals. Workplace collaboration allows multiple employees to combine their efforts and energies into a common project, adding value to the final product and often completing it more quickly. The benefits don’t end there, either. Here are some of the other advantages gained by encouraging collaboration among your workforce.


Increased Efficiency
As the old saying goes, two heads are better than one. With multiple people actively pursuing a common goal, progress toward that goal can move along much quicker than if a lone worker had to complete it independently.

Greater Engagement Between Employees
Workplace collaboration solutions tie the entire office closer together, even if some of your employees aren’t technically “in” the office. Connecting office employees with their remote-working teammates will help your remote workers feel like they are still involved and valued--and allow your in-house employees to benefit from their input as well.

Of course, your in-house team members can experience the positive effects of collaboration as well. Having employees share ideas also encourages them to build off of each other’s successes, and will often result in a sense of camaraderie among team members.

Initiating New Employees
One of the fastest methods for a new employee to learn what they are supposed to do is to learn it from an experienced coworker. The other method is to dive right into it. Collaboration solutions offer the opportunity for a new employee to do both as they and the more experienced team member work together to complete the task at hand.

These are just a few brief samplings of the many benefits a company can enjoy once collaboration has become a part of the office culture. The question now is, how does one go about encouraging collaboration in the first place?

Lead By Example...
First of all, if your employees see you extolling the benefits of collaborative work while never participating in it yourself, they are apt to disregard your recommendations and continue to go about their work on their terms. However, if you demonstrate the value of collaborative work by initiating it with your workers, you prove not only that it does present benefits to business operations, but also that you are serious about implementing it.

… but Know When to Step Aside
As a leader, you will need to be cognizant of when to back off and trust your employees to do what they have to do. Micromanaging a project and trying to force collaboration on your employees will result in the opposite effect that you were hoping for, wasting time and reducing their morale. Have faith that your employees are capable of doing the job you hired them to do with minimal direction.

Let Your Employees Speak Up
Make sure that your employees have a forum to voice their ideas and concerns. A big part of collaboration is the ability for each team member to contribute to solving problems that an organization encounters. Give them a way to share their ideas for improvement and acknowledge each idea as a viable option. This will bring the team closer and create a more cohesive workplace.

Demonstrate the Benefit to the Employee, Not Just the Company
Presumably, your workforce is made up of human beings, which means that at least some portion of them will, when presented with the idea of collaboration, think to themselves, “What’s in it for me?” This is not the time to focus exclusively on how internal collaboration will be of benefit to the company. You should also mention how much easier collaboration can make their jobs, making the benefits personal and professional, and in turn making them more likely to embrace collaborative work.

If you’ve found success in increasing collaboration in your workplace, let us know how in the comments below.

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Leave Your Moving Stresses In Your Old Office

Leave Your Moving Stresses In Your Old Office

There’s nothing quite like signing off on your first business space. It’s like officially saying, “My business is up and running. Visit my office today!” What’s even more exciting, however, is when your organization is growing so quickly that your business space becomes cramped or too small to grow unhindered. Either way, the way you set up your office is going to be an important part of running your business.

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The Connection, Inc
51 Village CT
Hazlet, New Jersey 07730