B2B Connection

Information and resources for technology buyers

2023 B2B Buying Disconnect: The Self-Serve Economy Is Prove It or Lose It by Megan Headley
Top eCommerce Strategies for 2023 by Neil Chandavarkar

Options for sharing your small business’s passwords were once limited to unprotected emails or post-it notes scattered around the office. Luckily for both security and convenience, those days are behind us. If you’re still using the old ways, no shame, we won’t tell. That just means you have the convenience and security benefits of a password manager to look forward to. The safety of your business’s digital identity is a big thing to trust a third party with. Let’s take a look at why it’s worth doing it and a few trustworthy options to jumpstart your decision process. Why Your Small Business Needs a Password Manager Password management software stores the usernames and passwords for all your business’s various online accounts in an encrypted vault. All these passwords are protected by one master password that you set. Your master password is the only one you’ll need to remember as long as you use a password manager. Check out our “What is a Password Manager?” blog post for a quick refresher on password managers’ basic functions. In addition to these basic features, password managers have plenty to offer small businesses. Secure Password Sharing Each employee at your small business will be […]

You’ve probably been hearing a lot about UCaaS lately. With more and more companies working in offices again, video conferencing products like Zoom have been rebranding. They want to emphasize that they can do more than let you see your remote coworkers’ pets during meetings.  Let’s take a look at what exactly is included in UCaaS, and what makes it different from other types of communication software. What Does UCaaS Do? UCaaS stands for unified communications as a service. The name alone gives you a good idea of what UCaaS providers’ goal is: to meet all of a business’s communication needs through a cloud-based, software-as-a-service subscription model. Specifically, UCaaS platforms include: Voice communication/VoIP Video conferencing Messaging Collaboration All these communication capabilities are accessible over the internet. VoIP VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) is a technology that allows you to make phone calls over the internet. VoIP users and standard landline or cell phone users can call each other. This makes VoIP an effective replacement for a standard PBX phone system. Here’s a quick rundown of how VoIP technology sends your voice over the internet as data: VoIP supports hardphones (physical phones) and softphones (software that can function like a phone). […]

Did you know that 20% of businesses fail within their first year of operation, and 50% of businesses fail within the first five years? The reality is that people won’t continue to use a product or service that’s constantly struggling with downtimes or outages. With so many factors determining whether your business sinks or swims, it’s important to take action early! Find out how an AIOps solution can eliminate these issues so that your small business succeeds in today’s technical landscape! What is AIOps? Artificial intelligence for IT operations (or AIOps) uses machine learning models and big data to collect, process, and analyze data from multiple sources. AIOps tools centralize the operations management process and display everything on one dashboard. This allows DevOps and IT teams to make sense of data quicker and automate different aspects of IT operations workflow. In some cases, AIOps tools also help with IT infrastructure and performance monitoring, providing streamlined information and metrics around the clock. These monitoring tools also reduce the amount of alert volume you receive from incidents, which helps to narrow your focus to the alerts that truly matter. Check out our “What is AIOps?” blog post to learn more! How can […]

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is an affordable online communication software that allows users to utilize an internet signal to manage multiple communication capabilities. VoIP offers several benefits for all business types while not breaking the bank. Capabilities include things like direct messaging, voicemail transcribing, and video conferencing.  This is an area that is rapidly evolving. Trends in VoIP are moving as the industries involved demand innovation and external forces ensure it is needed. Enterprise organizations have hyper-specific needs to get the most out of this essential type of software. VoIP For Enterprises For small businesses, a business VoIP provider can offer a cost-effective, one-stop-shop system for managing all online communication, both internal and external. It allows business owners and managers to avoid paying traditional telephone service fees, while also supplying a unique phone number for the business. This means personal phone numbers do not have to be used. To learn more about these needs, or to explore software specifically targeted at small businesses, check out our piece below For enterprises, VoIP offers a budget-friendly, global communication tool that offers advantages such as: simplifying the conferencing capabilities providing additional platform/tool integration improving call/conferencing clarity and quality allowing for multi-tasking across software […]

The bigger you are the harder you fall–unless you have a powerful management structure for your team of course. If you want to ensure that your team can manage their complex projects and operations, ERP software may be the solution. ERP systems can offer companies robust tools to manage long and tasking workloads like accounting, scheduling, projects, and development. It can both be your company’s safety net when work gets frustrating as well as a system to streamline daily workflow. What is ERP Software? Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software is like a virtual task master for any complex business needs. With an ERP you can maximize daily business processes like optimizing workflow with project management tools or expediting the procurement process.  The types of business functions an ERP system can help with are surprisingly diverse from things like Human Resources to business intelligence (BI). The software solution’s versatile nature allows it to fall into several categories of business software, all in one software or software package. An ERP goal is to make your team’s workload easier to manage with a robust set of tools. Popular ERP Features and Functionality Finance, Accounting, expense management, and other related tools Project management (some […]

Virtual machine software ranges in use from server virtualization to mimicking other operating systems to handle package dependency for development.  Things as varied as package dependency and server virtualization require an equally varied solution.  This means there is no one-size-fits-all virtual machine solution.  Businesses can spend upwards of $150.00 per year per license just to handle virtualization.  Unless you need highly specific features, there will likely be a free virtual machine option for you. We will explore the best virtual machine platforms for developers using each of the most popular host OS: Windows, Linux, and macOS.  Each of these virtual machine options is easy to implement and manage, and most of them are free of charge. Virtual Machine Software Overview Name trScore Pros Cons Supported OS Pricing VMware Workstation Pro 8.8/10 -Free for individuals-Works on Most popular OS -Fewer Niche OS capabilties Windows, Linux, MacOS Free- $199+ Oracle VM VirtualBox 8.8/10 – Supports  Most OS Options- High Level of customization – More Difficult to Manage than Alternatives -Most Operating Systems Free Parallels Desktop 8.9/10 -Easiest to Implement- High Performance – No Forever Free Option – Windows 10- Most Linux Distributions $75.00+ per Year Hyper-V 8.1/10 – Built into Windows 10-No […]

If there’s anything people in the world of small business like, it’s time and money. Bad scheduling processes are costing you both. Over half of employers spend two hours each week creating a work schedule. Some even spend up to twelve. Missed shifts also cost employers $7,500 every year. If those wastes sound unacceptable to you, check out these employee scheduling software packages. What Does Employee Scheduling Software Do? Employee scheduling software streamlines and automates the process of shift scheduling. The right tool typically replaces handwritten schedules or spreadsheets. Such software typically has many features to increase the ease of creating and adjusting schedules. Some of the basic features include Drag-and-Drop Scheduling  The scheduling solution streamlines the process of creating staff schedules. It is conceptually the same as what you would do by hand or with a spreadsheet, only a lot more user-friendly. Simply drag and drop employees into the appropriate hour slots. Then make sure that there are enough employees of the right types for each time period.  Shift Swapping Employees have stuff come up all the time. Illness, family emergencies, or other scheduling conflicts can wreak havoc on your schedule. Employee scheduling software makes it easy to handle […]

Every organization knows the feeling of trying to find better, more efficient ways of creating their product or service. Agile development is a relatively young workflow methodology. At the start of the millennium, software devs pioneered the development of agile, and here we are. Since its inception, agile has seen incredible adoption across the business world, especially in tech sectors. For your organization, you will want to understand the benefits and drawbacks. As a result, we explored crucial statistics in adoption, implementation, challenges, performance, and pandemic response. We also examined the most important trends, exploring the attributes that make agile poised to succeed in the future.  For a quick refresher on the difference between agile and waterfall, or to simply learn more about each, click the link below: Essential Agile Statistics for 2022 and Beyond It is essential to understand current data and trends in agile development given how fast such methods evolve. Whether you are looking to adopt this method or are a long-term advocate, this information is invaluable. To serve that need, here are the most important agile development statistics and trends you need to know about.  Agile Adoption Snapshot 94% of companies in the software sector report […]

When you’re drowning in clients and menial tasks piling up, who do you call? Well, no one. There isn’t a hotline for managing business workloads. If there was, they would direct you to software designed to help manage your sales, clients, growth, and everything in between. One of those powerful software options is CRM. It can help even niche industries like business consultants.  What Is a CRM Software? CRM stands for customer relationship management software. It can optimize workflows for most B2C (and even B2B) companies. They’re often used for future growth, and daily tasks all while bringing employees closer. The software is often designed for marketers, salespeople, and customer support teams. Many CRMs have marketing features like email marketing automation or ad management. Other CRMs have features for sales teams like lead management. Most CRMs have some form of customer service functionality like live chat, chatbots, and ticketing across media channels.  If you have a business that requires building and maintaining client relationships a CRM will be a great asset. Companies that focus more on marketing or customer service will also be able to find a CRM that best fits their use case. CRM software is incredibly diverse. They […]

70% of organizations have experienced project failure at some point over the past year, according to research from KPMG. One likely contributor: lack of standardized project management practices. Only 21% of businesses have put standardized project management (PM) practices and systems in place.  Enter project management software. While these tools can help you manage all aspects of a project lifecycle—they often come with a large price tag. Free project management tools can partly solve this problem. One trade-off for no-cost options is limited functionality and fewer customization options. Open-source project management software outshines free PM tools in this regard. The best open source projects have active, vibrant communities dedicated to helping create software that more than covers the gaps of free offerings from SaaS vendors.  These wonderful people will give you free access to bug fixes, customization options, and feature code. As a result of its highly customizable nature, open-source options are agood fit for small and agile teams looking for a highly customizable solution.  Here are six open-source project management tools worth considering:  OpenProject Gitlab GanttProject Taiga Odoo ZenTao Is Open-Source Project Management Software Right For You?  Is open-source the right type of software for your business? Relying on […]

Communication is key for all relationships, especially your customer relationships. You want your consumers to always be able to reach you at a reliable and recognizable number, but that’s the tip of the iceberg. Today you not only need to be able to offer reliable high-quality calls, but also chat messaging, SMS, and email.  One solution local and remote companies will use is a voice over internet protocol (VoIP) business phone system. This software can allow calls and messages over the internet for better speed and reliability. What Is a VoIP? A VoIP essentially allows you to call and receive calls over the internet. This can allow you more convenience if you’re a remote or hybrid team that doesn’t want to be tied down to a landline. The overall VoIP phone system costs can actually be lower than your current traditional phone plans.  For more information, you can see our definition article that explains how a VoIP works and its general benefits here.  How much does a VoIP service cost? VoIP software can be a cost-effective way to connect with clients, but that does not mean all subscriptions are cheap. You’ll find the general costs in this article range from […]

Marketing to and connecting with consumers on social media networks is an almost mandatory practice for eCommerce platforms. Shoppers need to know you exist and social media posts are one of the cheapest ways to do so. Another equally important motivation is that customers want businesses to respond when they message them or tag them, or form a hashtag around them.  You will miss a lot about your own company if you’re not careful. Implementing a social media marketing strategy will be significantly easier if you can access free social media management platforms and free content creation tools.  We discuss some very innovative applications to streamline your workflow and personalize your brand’s communications. What is Social Media Marketing? Social Media Marketing (SMM) is where small businesses, enterprise marketing teams, or marketing agencies post branded content and ads on social networks. It requires extensive research, creativity, engaging graphics, and maintaining an active presence on social media platforms.  SMM can generate organic traffic so you don’t always have to run ads on social media platforms. Ads aren’t the only expense that can be saved, content creation, social media management of campaigns, and everyday communications can be very expensive when using agencies of […]

As technology has rooted its way into our day-to-day existence, education has been changed. Long gone are the times of thumbing through an Encyclopedia. With information at the tips of our fingers, learning is now boundless.  Improving education is a huge issue for our society. Test scores, our perceived performance against different nations, and different elements have pushed education to the bleeding edge of national legislative issues, directly behind healthcare reform. Technology can be utilized to improve teaching and learning and help our students be successful. Tech helps education in many ways, including utilizing: Digital Simulations And Models Online learning Improved communication Vast information resources Better assignments Self-paced learning More Fun Learning Online collaboration Improved education access While everyone would love to see smaller schools and class sizes, technology cannot do that physically. However, technology can be a “force multiplier” for the teacher. Through the use of learning management systems (LMS) students can access online resources to get assistance on demand beyond the physical reach of their teacher. Technology can also extend education in another way. Education doesn’t stop toward the finish of the school day. Students can access teachers, resources, and assignments via the web whenever and wherever they […]

The right project management tool can turn your work from a cruel reminder of a middle-school group project into an efficient, effective experience. While we all recognize the value of project management software, the follow-up question is simple: What is it going to cost? By understanding the different pricing levels open to you, you can make the smartest decision for your organization. This includes pricing for tools for everyone from small businesses to enterprise-level corporations and everyone in between.  What is Project Management Software? Broadly speaking, project management tools are designed to support every step of the task process, from conception to evaluation. This is done by offering a series of tools, features, and organizational methods to help your teamwork perform at its best. For those looking for a charming, animated explanation of project management software, check out the video below by Zoho. How Do You Choose Project Management Software? If you are still in the process of deciding which project management software is right for you, we have you covered. Check out the link below for a comprehensive guide on how to pick the right tool for you. Pricing of The 5 Top Rated Project Management Software Here you […]

eDiscovery software revolutionizes the functionality of law firms. In eDiscovery platforms evidence becomes electronically stored information, referred to as ESI. Today common evidence can be texts or social media posts.  This makes discovery software incredibly important because you will need to store and process ESI. eDiscovery tools are also brimming with features like metadata extraction and real-time data processing to streamline any paralegal’s workload. These tools allow for a level of efficiency and thoroughness that is both essential and impossible without them.  Utilizing software like this is a life saver, but it can kill small budgets. Does free eDiscovery software really exist? The answer is not really.  There are some affordable choices and some alternatives you can use while searching for eDiscovery software. You can jump to the section for more information, but if you are new to the concept of eDiscovery we offer a brief explanation. What is eDiscovery? eDiscovery means electronic discovery. eDiscovery software is a type of document review software. Discovery in the legal process is the evidence that is processed and shared by legal professionals. This evidence will also be shared with legal teams and the opposing side.  eDiscovery is meant to make your workflow easier. […]

Project management software is essential for helping your team collaborate. Before committing to a project management tool, however, you need to ensure that it has the right features and capabilities to suit your team’s needs. A startup working on several projects simultaneously will need software that can keep up with its rapid pace. A client-facing small business may prefer an all-in-one project management and CRM solution. Larger enterprises will likely need many different permissions settings and workspaces for all their users. We will explore some of the factors everyone should consider when choosing project management software. We’ll also look at some specialized features offered by some tools that might benefit your team. If you’re new to project management, you can watch this video first for a quick primer on what it is, and how it can help your business: Key Considerations for Choosing the Best Project Management Software Let’s look at several key factors to keep in mind when comparing options. Ease of Use The goal of using project management software should be to streamline your workflow. Options with an intuitive interface will make task tracking significantly less tedious for your team. Ease of use will mean different things depending […]

Project management software is a valuable tool that can help you organize and collaborate on projects of any type or scale. You may need a customizable tool with plenty of automation. You may prefer a simple and intuitive interface, or software that is well suited to your development team’s agile workflow. You can take advantage of these useful features at no cost with free project management software. No matter what features you’re looking for, we’ve found the best project management software you can get for free for you and your team members. What Makes the Best Free Project Management Software? All the tools on this list were selected for their feature-rich free versions and suitability for different use cases. Below is a quick overview, before we cover each tool in detail.  Software Tr Score Free Version Limitations Biggest Pro Biggest Con Jira 8.2 10 Users, Unlimited Projects, 2 GB Storage, No Customer Support Integration with DevOps Tools and Support for Agile Workflows Can be Complicated to Learn, Only Designed for DevOps Trello 8.4 Unlimited Users, Unlimited Workspaces (Teams), 10 Boards per Workspace Efficient, Intuitive Interface Free Version Only Includes Board View ClickUp 8.8 Unlimited Users, Unlimited Tasks, 100 MB Storage, […]

Construction projects are complex by nature. To be completed successfully, safely, and on time, the multitude of moving pieces (and the various people or companies who will play a role in delivering each one) must all be synced up. Stakeholders need to be on the same page and aware of how every part of the project will unfold. But it’s nearly impossible to create a perfect construction project plan at the onset of the job. Even if you’re confident that you’re accounting for the full scope of work involved in the project, there will inevitably be changing variables during the planning, bidding, and building phases that will drive a change in your plan. A Request for Information (RFI) document is used to keep these projects moving in a cost-effective and time-efficient manner. RFIs request key information from design and engineering professionals needed to flesh out project variables that have come up since the original bid or contract was drawn up. In essence, the RFI is a communication vehicle for the dynamic planning and decision making that must go into completing a complex and expensive construction project. Let’s dive deeper into how construction RFIs are used in the industry. Here we […]

Odds are that each department in your organization uses some sort of project management, workforce collaboration, project portfolio management, task management, or issue tracking software. Unlike department-specific technology, however, project management software is intuitive and flexible enough to be used by individuals across functions and project types. As companies grow, centralized PM tools become crucial for eliminating redundancies. However, finding the PM tool that fits your needs isn’t always easy. Some products are better suited for certain use cases than others, and it’s likely that your team members are already committed to using the tools they’re familiar with. Because of this, most companies end up purchasing multiple project management tools instead of just one. In a recent TrustRadius survey, 58% of 200 end-users reported that they use at least two project management tools.  Not all businesses can afford to purchase 2-3 different tools– especially small businesses operating on a tight budget. Combined with the reality of a crowded market (there are 230 project management products listed on TrustRadius alone!), finding the perfect PM software can be a struggle.  To help you cut through the noise and figure out which product would suit your needs best, we’ve compiled a list below of […]

And just like that, 2021 will soon be history. The digitization of communication shows no signs of slowing down; the Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) industry is expected to grow to at least USD 55 billion by 2025. Certain trends within the VoIP market have been intensifying over the past few years, including the consolidation of online communication technologies, increasing mobility of VoIP software, growing security concerns, and the slow death of traditional telephones.  Once upon a time, ‘business phone systems’ were reserved for enterprises with hundreds of physical phones. However, VoIP technology has made business phone calling highly accessible for small and giant companies alike. It allows users to make voice calls via the internet—instead of using old school landline telephones or mobile phones that rely on cellular networks. Heading into 2022, we have compiled a list of the 8 most important VoIP trends to keep an eye on as 2022 approaches. Those trends are: Increasing Popularity of UCaaS AI Technology for VoIP 5G for Mobile Looming Security Concerns Integrated In-App Communications Increasing Mobility Goodbye to traditional telephones Competition or Consolidation with Video Chat Services #1 Increasing Popularity of UCaaS  2022 will see the further consolidation of communication technologies […]