Author Archive

Company.com launches to help small businesses collaborate online via social networking to save money and boost productivity.

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While social networking has been all the hype lately, it’s not clear/proven how small businesses will put it to work for them. New companies sprout up daily claiming to be experts to help you leverage social networking in your small businesses. Typically they focus on building a message, report, widget, video that will get passed around and people will hear about your business. Others advise you on how to protect you reputation in communities and use communities like LinkedIn to find leads and insert yourself in relevant discussions online.

How many communities can one possibly be active in? There’s no shortage of online communities; Salesforce.com has Chatter, Google just put out Buzz, LinkedIn is my favorite so far, and of course Facebook.

We come back to the question, how can businesses put social networking to work for them. I think Company.com has the answer. What they do different is structure the conversations and match up people so business owners and management can find conversations around their toughest problems. They do this by creating communities with experts they have vetted who contribute with solid advice. I’ve sifted through and have been impressed so far.

Company.com wants to be there for you from cradle to crave, by helping you find information around every step of the small business cycle i.e. how to raise finances, technology advice, how to streamline operations, advice on business strategy, and more.

They are backed by a very experienced management team – In my opinion the single biggest factor to the success of new business ventures. They also bring that human touch to helping businesses save money by vetting vendors, side-by-side comparisons, negotiating the best deal for their members- you- the small business owner. Not just another ad-based non-discriminating aggregator like business.com

They want to “help businesses make money and save money.” We’ll, we’re all for that.
At HyperOffice “ Our mission is to empower growing organizations with technology traditionally available only to large enterprises, and help them achieve business growth, competitive advantage and success.”

You can see why we decided to get behind Company.com and help small businesses compete with more effective and lower cost collaboration software. I hope you’ll check them out, and I look forward to watching them become a household name.

Skype and HyperOffice – a winning combination in collaboration

Skype business collaboration software HyperOffice has been a big fan of Skype for many years, along with over 450 million other users who are using Skype. As of this summer Skype is delivering more international calls than any other telecom company in the world. With so many users on Skype – and its’ popularity amongst our customers, we recently changed the default IM and VOIP tool inside HyperOffice to Skype. Now clients can improve their collaboration experience inside  HyperOffice. i.e. if you are sharing documents in HyperOffice, and want to chat in real time you can click on IM (at the top right of the HyperOffice interface) and open a Skype session.  Unlike collaboration tools with private chat environments they’ve built themselves – with HyperOffice & Skype chances are the person you’re working with is on Skype too. Or lets say you’re working with shared contacts in HyperOffice, you can click on the small Skype icon next to the name to initiate a call (even free international calls if they’re Skype users) or chat with the stored contact. You can check out these two features in the video.

HyperOffice has had a lot of success using Skype internally – so when we heard Skype for Business was holding a contest, we entered, and we won first place! You can check Skype’s blog to see how HyperOffice improve sales with the help of Skype here.

I expect Skype will only get better (faster) now that Skype has broken away from eBay, and improve its’ application in the collaboration world further as more project teams and small business jump on board their well packaged Skype for Businesses offerings.

Thank you Skype for the award!

Collaboration Software is a hit with Virtual Assistants

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Last night the Virtual Assistance Chamber of Commerce sponsored a webinar event for their members titled Leveraging Collabortive Virtual Office Technology for Virtual Assistants and Solopreneurs, where they invited HyperOffice to present our collaboration software suite. This was the second event we have done together, in response to the tremendous amount of interest we have from the Virtual Assistant community. Seems like the downturn in the economy is leading to greater demand for Virtual Assistants – since small businesses are laying off full-time staff, yet still have to keep up with the demands of trying to grow their business.

One of the common themes during the webinar was business productivity online suites  like HyperOffice help Virtual Assistants save time in trying to service their customers, allowing them to take on more clients in the same amount of time. One time saving trick  Danielle Keister, VACOC Founder and Virtual Assistant expert, shared with the group was creating a virtual drive which can be shared with between Virtual Assistants and their clients.

Danielle demonstrated how  HyperDrive can be setup in a couple minutes to create a central document repository where documents can be stored securely while giving access to clients to view and upload files and documents. As compared to other tools on the market, HyperDrive allows you to store multiple versions of a shared document without the clutter of sifting through multiple files with built in document version controls right from your windows explorer (also available on Mac). HyperOffice welcomes the Virtual Assistant community to try HyperOffice and take advantage of our deep domain expertise on setting up your virtual office to streamline your business using HyperOffice.

SaaS for SMBs – choosing the right vendor

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Choose the Right Vendor

Many small and medium sized businesses are quickly learning the benefits of buying SaaS, especially in this tough economy – but how do you go about making sure you pick the right vendor?  HyperOffice has published a white paper to help you ask the right questions, and will be offering a webinar hosted by Rusty Weston. Rusty was previously head of Research for InformationWeek for about 8 years and technologist focusing on distributed global knowledge workers.

According to a recent LinkedIn poll, http://polls.linkedin.com/p/32425/gwwxn the most popular applications which SMBs are going to SaaS for are online collaboration software followed by CRM. If you are considering SaaS the criteria for picking the right vendor is very similar (aside from meeting your feature/functional needs). To read the whitepaper and register for the webinar we are sponsoring on June 5th visit http://www.hyperoffice.com/saas-reviews-for-smbs/

Email Overload solved by Online Collaboration

Email overload is starting to become recognized as the biggest culprit of lost productivity. I began researching this topic a couple weeks ago and found that just in the last 3 months alone there have been articles written by the NY Times, Wall Street Journal, segments on TV news stations, and dozens of blog entries trying to wrestle with this problem. A very recent Basex Research study has found that information overload, including email interruptions, cost businesses $900 billion annually in terms of productivity. I found that there are a few distinct approaches to this problem.

The first group of solutions involves best practices. For example, filing emails into folders, signing a truce with your co-workers to not always reply to all and use subject lines more effectively, don’t read email in the morning, and the list goes on. The second, is managing spam. Buying the latest spam filter, or going with a business email service that will do this for you…well, and how to avoid getting on these lists. The third approach assumes that if you are getting too many emails you have some broken internal business process that needs to be streamlined and email should not be used in ways it was not intended. For example, using email to collaborate on documents, scheduling meetings, getting updates on projects, etc.  Moving to online workspaces is where I think the biggest improvements can be made. I speak with so many businesses each day who have to collaborate but are using email to share information with their team.

To better understand the causes of email overload and how to improve productivity while cutting back on email is what we discuss in a white paper published today at http://www.hyperoffice.com/business-email-overload Please review this study and join us for a live webinar where our special guest speaker, James Gaskin, a well respected columnist who writes on technology topics for SMBs at NetworkWorld and IT World will discuss this topic in detail. This online seminar is open to the public and we expect a lively discussion about how to solve email overload at your organization. Read more and register for the May 28th webinar here

Collaboration News – HyperOffice Spring Newsletter

Today our customers received our Spring Newsletter. Our newsletter goes out to all customers and anyone who chooses to subscribe to this quarterly publication. Many SMBs who are interested in online collaboration can benefit from this newsletter, so if you didn’t get it, check it out at http://clients.hyperoffice.com/newsletters/ 

A couple highlights include:

  • Our new Client Site providing our customers with valuable resources on how to improve team collaboration
  • Collaborative Visionaries – our HyperOffice User Group through LinkedIn
  • Request for volunteers who would like to become beta users on the new AJAX interface we will be releasing this summer. A great way to have direct impact on the upcoming release of HyperOffice

HyperOffice Collaboration Suite wins #1 Collaboration & Productivity Award

We learned today that HyperOffice won the April Collaboration & Productivity Award by SaaSDirectory. We’re very proud to be recognized as a leader in the hosted collaboration and messaging market. With the rapid adoption by SaaS in the SMBs, I’m hearing many business owners have a hard time cutting through the noise by some of the unproven vendors jumping on the SaaS bandwagon. SaaSDirectory may be helpful to help SMBs shortlist reputable business collaboration software. Thank you SaaSDirectory.