08000 433 006 james@cloud-genius.com

Why do you pay people?

I recently heard a great story about a man with a hammer… bear with me as I have a more up-to-date version.

The story starts with a submarine captain. His submarine is broken. This is a big problem. The submarine had a large crew. Every day that he was stuck in dock would cost a lot of money. Not only that, but he had a mission to complete. He was desperate to get going again. He asked around the docks and could not find anyone to fix his craft.

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Eventually, his first officer managed to find an old chap with a hammer. The captain was sceptical, but invited the man aboard. He went straight down into the engine room. The man looked at all the pipes, took out his hammer, tapped a pipe and the submarine sprang back into life. The captain was overjoyed. He asked the man to invoice him. The invoice was immediately produced: £2,002.

The captain was staggered and challenged the man.. why so much money? All you did was tap a pipe it only took a few seconds.

The man patiently explained: Cost of tapping the pipe £2. The thirty years learning where to tap the pipe – £2,000.

A client of mine has been trying to integrate their website and their email and their CRM system. So far they have worked their way through 3 volunteers. The volunteers were great people, but they did not have the experience and knowledge necessary. They had not put in the time to build up the certifications, the years building up experience (through mistakes as well as successes). Although the volunteers were committed, they did not have all that experience and all those certifications.

The lack of functionality has cost their organisation dear… possibly thousands in lost donations, wasted time, etc.

When they came to us, we were quickly able to see the issues and get everything working closely together.

Like the man with the hammer we then have to send in our bill. Although it is not free, it will save them thousands. We are not ‘cheap’, but we try to offer great value.

Let us help you!

Passwords… and why you need to care

Let me tell you of an IT company. It had started off small so the director had chosen a favourite password ‘D0neit01

This was some time ago, so the fact that it had numbers in made it really secure. It wasn’t particularly long, but it was memorable. Much better than other familiar passwords, like ‘Password01’ or ‘letmein’.

There were five of them working for this company and they were all really good friends. Three directors and two minions. They were working with cleaning companies and whoever would take them on. They realised that their level of service was a cut above everyone else’s, so they realised they could aim higher.

With one of those flashes of inspiration that sometimes hits small companies they realised that they could start working with the finance industry. They already had some contacts in that area of business and, well, those clients had money. It was a sure-fire hit!

Success Breeds Success

A few years later and they had an impressive portfolio of clients. Around a hundred in the bespoke finance industry. Hedge-fund managers, bespoke bankers, investment companies. Their clients loved their high level of service. In part this was because an engineer visiting site knew what the top admin password would be. You’ve guessed it. By this point about a hundred of their clients were investing more than $1B each. (Yes, 100 x $1,000,000,000 = $0.1T). Which starts to look like a significant part of the UK’s GDP. Some of the companies demanded ’secure passwords’ with funny characters in. For those companies the password became ‘D0nit01!’. Engineers knew that if the ‘low security’ password didn’t work you could use the high security one. Simples!

One of the managers was tasked with looking for a password manager. This would be able to hold all types of password. It would be able to fill in passwords automatically. You could give different members of the company different levels of access.

It came back with a price-tag of £10,000.

That was a lot of money.

The directors were not convinced that it was necessary.

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An Innocent Mistake

One day, one of the directors was logging into a client, let’s call them ‘securefinance’. Their website was ‘securefinance.com’. The director had not noticed that in their speed they had typed ‘securefinance.co’. The website looked EXACTLY like securefinance.com so why would they notice?

Over the coming months they started to notice that some of their clients were failing. In one bad incident a client lost $0.1B in a week! That client immediately started the process of winding down. It was sad – they were a difficult client, but they had been a good payer.

You are probably going to guess what had happened. That fake website had grabbed the entered username and password and was now beginning to use it on lots of websites. They were getting lucky. They were also trying password variations automatically. So they were picking off both the ‘low’ and ‘high’ security clients.

Bad Guys Collaborate

They had also submitted the successful usernames and passwords to a database that is maintained by hackers. (Yes, this really does exist.) So lots of other people were trying these passwords… but they were not using them themselves. They were getting computers infected with ‘malware’ to try them. That IS the job of a lot of malware. If the malware successfully logged in then they would update the database. If the password failed then the bad guys were untraceable. Either way the bad guys win.

By now, clients were getting picked off at an increasing rate.

It was looking very bad.

Several consequencies could have happened, including a significant impact on the UK economy, jail terms and collapse of the IT company. This is based on a true story. The directors were potentially negligent, so could have lost the shirts off their backs.

The Good News

A good password manager is available for FREE. It has greater capabilities than that old software costing more than £10,000.

There is an Enterprise version which has all the granular controls you require for a little bit more.

With a password manager, doesn’t that mean that I am committing all my passwords to a database protected with ONE password? Surely that is a really BAD idea? Yes, it would be UNLESS you set up 2 factor identification. This means that you have a code to type in that is sent to you or generated on an app on your phone in addition to the password. As a hacker will not have both access to your password AND your phone your database is safe. It is also highly encrypted and if you lose your phone or your admin dies there are very secure ways to recover the database.

Here is the manager we use: Lastpass It is not the only one out there, but it is very good. We manage more than 1,500 passwords with it. All our client’s passwords are unique, long and very complicated.

You might not be managing billions of dollars, but you wouldn’t want to lose what you have.

Event Bridge – gaining traction

I recently went to an event where the communication was appalling!

There were baggage checks that were only disclosed when you got the the front of the hour-long queue.

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There was no program.

Even after I had left, a quarter of the way through in frustration… I was still receiving emails as if I were there.

This was at a big event, in a prestigious location. It left me feeling as if I were being treated like cattle.

Cattle penned and uncared for

How about, they had linked up their ticketing system to their messaging system? So that based on my attendance they could send me different messages?

It’s not only possible, it is inexpensive and easy!

Our Event Bridge solution does it quickly and easily. We can have you set up in an hour. Your attendance data in Eventbrite will seamlessly come over into your Salesforce account. It’s so easy!

Why not call for a demonstration? or check out our dedicated website on Event Bridge.

Not only will it give you the ability to treat your customers like royalty, it will also help you gain a profile of their attendance over time, it also cleans the data!

Call now on 08000 433 006 (UK free phone) or email info@eventbridge.com

Breadwinner delivers Salesforce integration for Netsuite

Back in 2015, I wrote a short article about Breadwinner and how this amazing product was integrating all of our Xero accounts into Salesforce. It seems to have made our lives so easy for so long. All our contacts in our accounting software match up EXACTLY with our Salesforce contacts. In that time it has been great to see Breadwinner continue to develop and add new features. At the time I said that Breadwinner was so good that it was a reason to purchase Salesforce.

If you were a Netsuite user, you had no such luck. You were left out in the cold with not proper 2-way integrations between your accounts/ERP and your Salesforce. Similarly, getting information from your Stripe account into Salesforce was ‘difficult’.

TODAY, I have heard that all that has changed.

Breadwinner is also launching integrations to connect Salesforce to Stripe, and another one to integrate Netsuite with Salesforce.

Breadwinner has brought out an integration for Netsuite. That has to be big news – your CRM and your Accounts/ERP package talking to each other. Using all the power of Salesforce reporting to give a real insight into how your business is doing.

Stripe talking with your Salesforce has to be big news, too! (But I am still more excited by the Netsuite news.)

So, what are you waiting for? I have always found Breadwinner to be super helpful, so why not find out more from the links.

 Salesforce to Stripe, and integrate Netsuite with Salesforce.

Happy Christmas… a time for rest?

Wishing everyone a joyous time of year, whether that is Channukah, Christmas, Diwali, Yule or whatever is special to you and those whom you love.

You have probably taken the time to put your feet up… but will your customers?

Many people will be bored on Christmas and start playing with their iPads, iPhones or the old desktop computer lurking in the corner. In other words, just because you have a holiday doesn’t mean that your customers and potential customers do. So make sure they have something to do!

What better than to have them spending money on your Ecommerce website – even better if they are using gift tokens that a friend or relative has bought for them. They can find out if Apple Pay or Google Pay really works on their new devices.

So, happy festivals, may you have lots of rest and a prosperous new year. (While your website works for you in the background.)

All the best,

 

 

John

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