‘Growing up on the Internet’ – Education is key!

Posted on Mar 23 2017 by Paul Heritage-Redpath | Comments Off on ‘Growing up on the Internet’ – Education is key!

This week the House of Lords’ Communications Committee published a new report, ‘Growing up with the Internet’ which looks at how children should be protected online and sets out a number of new recommendations for industry and Government.

Key recommendations from the report are:

  • We recommend that all ISPs and mobile network operators should be required not only to offer child-friendly content control filters, but also for those filters to be ‘on’ by default for all customers. Adult customers should be able to switch off such filters.
  • Those responsible for providing filtering and blocking services need to be transparent about which sites they block and why, and be open to complaints from websites to review their decisions within an agreed timeframe. Filter systems should be designed to an agreed minimum standard.
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Brexit: what needs to happen now that our government’s gone AWOL?

Posted on Jun 29 2016 by Paul Heritage-Redpath | Comments Off on Brexit: what needs to happen now that our government’s gone AWOL?

Shock, awe, disgust, celebration. Whatever your reaction, nobody ever expected that we’d be left with no leadership and no plan of action. With David Cameron’s resignation, George Osborne and Theresa May keeping a very low profile and Boris Johnson off playing cricket, one may be forgiven for thinking our government has gone AWOL in the wake of last week’s Referendum vote. In any case, there is no firm plan and we’re all left scratching our heads as to what Brexit actually means for our country, our personal lives and the industry that we represent.

Since businesses are keeping the country ticking over while the politicians scrabble around to decide who’s in charge and what needs to be done, we thought we’d seize the opportunity to remind Whitehall what needs to be considered so that the connectivity industry can depart from the EU as painlessly as possible.

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Know your customers!

Posted on Nov 12 2012 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Know your customers!
Tags :
Categories : Food for thought

Is faster better for all? Resellers are always being encouraged to take the latest products to market and all too often the core message is ‘bigger-better-faster’. It’s little wonder that customers will ask about – and resellers will tend to sell – ‘speeds and volumes’.

Know your customer

Know your customer

We’ve seen the “Next Generation Network” became the “Now Generation Network” and, during the implementation and introduction of this new platform, we’ve all been constantly bombarded with technical and marketing messages about the latest and fastest connectivity services on offer. In a market where we’ve talked endlessly about speeds and volumes and led customers to believe ’faster is better’, how we manage customers’ expectations and, more importantly, educate them becomes a very important task.

First of all we need to recognise the change of the market’s dynamics. End users nowadays are more technically aware than before, due to the vast amount of marketing information available to them and this has significantly accelerated their adoption of technology. Years ago, end users valued their IT expertise at work and would replicate that experience in their homes. Today it seems everyone is an IT expert, with their experience of iPads, streaming television, Wi-Fi and 3G in their homes. Customers’ desire to take those technologies into work is driving businesses’ necessity to change. As a result, we often face customers who ’appear’ to know what they’re talking about with all their use of current jargon. They come to resellers having designed a solution for the issues that they want to address and ask for a specific product, with the best price seemingly being their most important consideration.

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Comms cuts through the cloud

Posted on Oct 15 2012 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Comms cuts through the cloud

Cloud. Isn’t this subject simply the latest in a long line of over-hyped concepts that will never really live up to the high expectations that everyone seems to be giving it? It seems any cloud sceptic soon meets forthright resistance from industry intelligentsia, who are entirely convinced that the cloud is not only here to stay but that it’s going to totally revolutionise the whole voice and data communications market.

Comms cuts through the cloud

Comms cuts through the cloud

The arguments are indeed convincing. Forrester Research has predicted that the cloud market will be worth around $61 billion in 2012. Future projections are even more startling, with Gartner forecasting worldwide cloud services revenues of $148.8 billion by 2014. Just about every commercial organisation, large and small, seems to be evaluating cloud services. The public sector is getting in on the act as well, with the government here in the UK launching its G-Cloud initiative as a way of helping public services all over the country cut the cost of IT.

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The art of hearing

Posted on Sep 10 2012 by Stephen Barclay | Comments Off on The art of hearing
Categories : Food for thought

In a market crowded with connectivity solutions that – to the buyer – look very much the same, it’s more important for resellers to focus on the needs of the customer – but listening isn’t always enough.

The art of hearing

The art of hearing

Let’s be honest, in the ICT industry we’re all guilty of constantly bombarding customers with technology terms and hyperbole. We blind customers with science and numbers as we compete voraciously for their business. We do this to such an extent that we often forget to ask them what it is that they want to achieve and, when we do ask them, we might listen but we don’t always hear.

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Making the right connections

Posted on Aug 08 2012 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Making the right connections
Categories : Food for thought

It should be music to the channel’s ears that connectivity is becoming more critical to all businesses now and that the people running those businesses realise this. Rather than getting tied into something that limits their options for two years or more, they are looking for services that can genuinely meet their needs. Every customer, every set of requirements is unique. By their definition, CUSTOMers have CUSTOMised requirements – if you can offer a service that is tailored to those exact needs, you’ll likely win their business.

Making the right connections

Making the right connections

In today’s market we’re finding that resellers are recognising ever-greater opportunity in providing combined connectivity solutions that solve sometimes complex problems, often related to making information systems accessible to employees across disparate locations, guaranteeing business continuity, driving efficiency and many other reasons. To enable this to happen, virtually the same products are widely available to resell from many suppliers – copper and fibre broadband, EFM, leased lines, VoIP, SIP trunks; the list is extensive.

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Get into VoIP – It’s perfect timing!

Posted on Jul 09 2012 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Get into VoIP – It’s perfect timing!
Categories : Featured, Food for thought, VoIP

Have you toyed with the idea of reselling VoIP solutions in the past? Maybe you were put off by lack of knowledge or didn’t believe there was a market for these services. If that was the case then now is the perfect time to re-evaluate your thinking.

Get into VoIP – It’s perfect timing!

Get into VoIP – It’s perfect timing!

The emergence of more stable and affordable connectivity solutions such as fibre broadband and EFM, coupled with a general market acceptance of the concept and practice of hosted applications, as well as advancements in VoIP services to reduce jitter and improve call quality mean that demand for VoIP is increasing rapidly.

An Illume consulting report states that between 2010 and 2011 there was over 20% growth in VoIP, 85% of which was in small businesses and shows the hosted VoIP market is growing 11% quarter on quarter. Similarly, IDC believe the Western European market will grow by 49% CAGR to be worth $0.7bn by 2014.

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Empowering customers, strengthening your business

Posted on Jun 13 2012 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Empowering customers, strengthening your business
Categories : Food for thought

Every day we’re seeing a rapidly growing interest among partners in the value they can derive from selling IP VPN services. Attracted by the potential of longer term contracts, higher margins and relationships that can open doors to even more business, they’re keen to understand what’s required, how to market and sell solutions and get help. If you’re in this group, read on…

Empowering customers, strengthening your business

Empowering customers, strengthening your business

What is an IP VPN?

For the technical experts, an IP VPN is a routed network that works at layer 3 of the OSI’s (Open Systems Interconnection Reference Model) seven layer model. For its routable protocol it uses IP (Internet Protocol).

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Is business good or could it be a lot better?

Posted on May 14 2012 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Is business good or could it be a lot better?
Categories : Featured, Food for thought

So, how’s 2012 shaping up for you business-wise? In our January Food for Thought article (So what’s your strategy for 2012?) we highlighted the need for having a clear strategy if your aim is to build upon what you’ve already achieved last year. Now that we’re five months into this year, are you following a specific plan or simply throwing money and resources at activities you hope will work?

Is business good or could it be a lot better?

Is business good or could it be a lot better?

A lot of businesses exist because of owner interest in a particular market, product or service. It’s maybe where they have previous experience or a passion. Others have evolved from an earlier idea that changed over time as new customers came on board. Whichever, a common problem that many owners and managers face is knowing where to apply their marketing spend in an effort to create opportunities for new business. Often a limited budget is focused on a limited number of activities that aren’t particularly successful. Furthermore, these activities are trying independently to generate enquiries. Realistically then, what level of success can be expected?

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Generic needs and specific desires

Posted on Apr 11 2012 by Darren Farnden | Comments Off on Generic needs and specific desires
Categories : Food for thought

Organisations tend to exist to provide products and services as a way of generating revenues that in turn make profits, provide people with an income for the long term, and serve society in some way. If you look behind these raisons d’être, you find a myriad of organisational needs. Businesses are looking for commercial differentiation to ensure they win new customers instead of losing out to competitors; for quicker decision making by those in charge or given key responsibilities; for peace of mind among stakeholders who have a vested interest in their success, whether in time or money terms.

Generic needs and specific desires

Generic needs and specific desires

In both the public and commercial sectors, organisations want to ensure efficient, smooth and co-operative interaction between teams to make sure things happen when they should; they also want to create an environment that people enjoy working in, so that productivity and customer service are as good as they can be and staff turnover is minimised.

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