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We are here to help you get clarity, make practical decisions and take action to put the systems your business needs in place to achieve more. We are committed to being objective (vendor agnostic) when it comes to technology because we know the focus needs to be on people, the work they do and the tools, support, collaboration and communication that helps them do it better.

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Sheepdog Blog

How the Cloud saves you money Feb 11 2014

When you move your business on to the cloud, there are many benefits, but one of the most biggest impacts is the one it has on your bottom line. Moving your business to the cloud saves you money in several different ways:

Lower licensing fees

The opportunity for cost saving comes first with the licensing fees. Typically, it is a lot cheaper to secure licensing for productivity suites that are hosted online, so you’ll see immediate savings right  there.

Less hardware for your software

Using a cloud or web version of your productivity suite, such as Microsoft Office with Office 365, or Google Apps, you’re not using any in-house infrastructure. This means you no longer need to power a server room or mini-data centre etc, bringing electricity costs down because you no longer need to supply power to it, or air-condition the room that it sits in. You also tend to see less bandwidth use once you get on the cloud. Plus, you obviously don’t need to buy more hardware for data storage going forward.

Increased Productivity

Whatever cloud system you go with, you’ll find that they all offer ways to work more efficiently. Take, for example, the search feature in Google Apps. When you’re looking for something in the new environment, it is fast and much easier than it would be using a system such as Microsoft Exchange. Somebody who is managing data tends to spend between 30% – 40% of their time looking for data, which is obviously a significant amount of time, so any way you can make that easier will help them do their job more effectively. Increased productivity is a big part of your ROI when you move to the cloud.

dave-tzagarakis

Dave Tzagarakis is Director of Sales at Sheepdog, and specializes in helping our clients understand how technology can help meet their business objectives.

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Recent Posts

How to Add Remote Desktop to Google Hangouts

Apr 03 2014

Well, we have to say that we are really excited about this!

We find remote control functionality to be the easiest way to help our clients and in general collaborate for certain use cases with “hands on” like functionality through the browser, It’s like you are in the same room with the other person who could be on the other side of the planet!

Google Apps really makes the experience of working remotely enjoyable with their collaboration tools however if you’re an Admin, it can be challenging to replicate the experience of supporting a user in person. This is an exciting piece of the cloud puzzle because now you can have a direct link to any trusted remote entity and have hands on remote control via Google Hangouts with this ultra simple easy to install plugin, all in the browser! So here’s how you can do it, first in Google Hangouts (Google+) while you are in a live Google video hangout, to the left there is a menu you will see several options:

Select the “Add apps” button the first time you try this out:

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 10.42.55 AM

then select –> “Remote Desktop”, it’s that easy!

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 10.43.37 AM

The next time you are in a Hangout it will be in the list for easy access. You can also set this up before the other members of your hangout join in. They will be asked to opt-in so there you can rest assured that they are aware that they are providing you with access to see and control their desktop.

 

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 10.44.14 AM

 

The main benefit of this technology is that Remote Desktop app in Google Hangouts allows you to take control of the remote users computer (with their permission, of course) so you can walk a user through a task, or just provide some basic support.

We also know that a lot of folks working in remote teams find it invaluable when they are having group meetings / presentation so that they can easily switch between presenters without switching computers, the Remote Desktop app makes the process extremely simple!

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We've found some hidden gems in Google Docs & Sheets with the new Add-ons

Mar 27 2014

The recently announced Add-ons in Google Docs and Sheets are getting a lot of traction with our customers. Typically they are light weight simple tools (in most cases built by third-party developers using Google Apps Script) that really add a lot of value as they often automate mundane tasks or simplify a business process in an intuitive way.  Once enabled by the admin on your domain, users can install add-ons to add more functionality to Google Docs and the new version of Sheets. After an Add-on is installed it become available across all your Docs and Sheets. Here are a few examples of some of the hidden gems we’ve seen so far:

MailChimp Merge (More info):

Screen Shot 2014-03-27 at 1.44.00 PM

Panda Doc – eSign & track Docs (More Info):

Screen Shot 2014-03-27 at 1.45.47 PM

Avery Label Merge (More Info):

Screen Shot 2014-03-27 at 1.54.47 PM

Gliffy Diagrams (More Info):

Screen Shot 2014-03-27 at 1.52.37 PM

So how do you get these for your Google Apps environment? 

The Admin console setting for add-ons controls both Docs and the new version of Sheets; there are not separate settings for each document type. (Add-ons are not available for other document types). If you disable Docs add-ons in your organization, users will still see the add-ons menu in their documents and can browse the store, but they can’t install any add-ons from the store.

To enable Google Docs add-ons:

  1. Sign in to the Google Admin console.

  2. Click Google Apps > Drive > General.

  3. Select the Allow users to install Google Docs add-ons check box.

  4. Click Save changes.

For additional information go to the following link: http://googleenterprise.blogspot.ca/2014/03/bring-little-something-extra-to-docs.html

There has been a lot of great articles on this subject you may also want to read including:

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