Wednesday, March 20, 2019

How Formulas Help Excel do the Calculations for You

To see this process in action, watch the video that accompanies this post.

Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet program that can be used to process simple computations as well as advanced functions. Most people can use Excel for basic calculations like:
  • Sum - adds the numbers in the cells in a selected range
  • Average - finds the average of the numbers in cells in a selected range
  • Count - counts the number of cells in a selected range with numbers in them
  • Countif - counts the number of cells in a selected range that meet the criteria you set
There are hundreds of formulas in Excel, but creating simple functions to start with does not take long and is fairly simple. To show how versatile some simple formulas are, consider how they can be used to track:
  • Attendance and absences for a group
  • Average spending or income
  • Supplies for a business or event
  • Inventory for insurance or a business
These are a few examples of how Excel formulas can be useful by automatically processing repetitive calculations. 

Thursday, March 14, 2019

How to Add Standard & Custom Watermarks to Documents

To see this process in action, watch the video that accompanies this post.

Most people have seen a document with a watermark. Confidential, Draft and Do Not Copy are commonly used watermarks. The purpose of a watermark is to visually alert the reader of a particular status related to this document. Attaching text like confidential or draft into the background of the document ensures the mark stays with the document even if copies are made. By contrast, having this information in an email or on the outside of an envelope does not protect the documents inside once they are removed from the email or envelope.

Another benefit of watermarks is that they can be added quickly and cause minimal distraction to the document context.


How to Add Standard & Custom Watermarks to Documents


There are two main types of watermarks to add to documents:  standard and custom. Custom watermarks allow you to use an image as the watermark as well as customizing the format of standard watermarks.

Adding standard watermarks

Standard watermarks consist of the following text choices:
  • Confidential
  • Do not Copy
  • Draft
  • Sample
  • ASAP
  • Urgent

Thursday, March 07, 2019

It's Consumer Protection Week - Here's 4 Ways to be Safer Online

This week is National Consumer Protection week and as while there are many threats to our user data and personal information, there are also a multitude of ways we can protect ourselves. Some examples of best practices are:
  • Using a credit card rather than debit card - this prevents you from needing to enter a pin in public where people can visually capture your input.
  • Using Apple or Google Pay - these applications store your credit card so you do not need to physically access the card to use it.
  • Using a unique PIN for debit cards - not reusing this pin for unlocking cell phones or as voicemail codes, etc.
  • Never sharing passwords, account access, and credit or debit cards with others.
There are other, more advanced threats to the security of your devices. It is important to be aware of them as this increases your ability to protect yourself from them. 


It's Consumer Protection Week - Here's 4 Ways to be Safer Online

There are far more than four approaches to staying safe in an online environment, but these ideas can be implemented immediately. Most importantly, remember to slow down when you are feeling pressured. Hackers often use scare tactics to appeal to your emotional, and less rational, feelings to get you to act without thinking. If you stop and think about what is going on before reacting, you will be less likely to make a big mistake.


Reduce the amount you rely upon search

Thursday, February 28, 2019

The Best App for Merging and Modifying Files

To see this process in action, watch the video that accompanies this post.

When working with larger files there can be a need to modify the order of pages, add signatures, or scan and add in additional documents for reference. During this process, you may run into issues like:
  • Multiple file uploads not being allowed.
  • A long document that requires a signature or signatures on only a few pages. In this case, printing the entire document and scanning it all back in together can be wasteful. 
  • Scanning a document that is larger than the automatic document feeder of the scanner and breaks the files into multiple files.
An example most of us have run into is needing to sign a large document and send it back to someone else. You can print and mail the document, but it is far faster to email or fax it back. The best answer is to use Acrobat to print only the signature page, merge this single page into the original document and replace the blank signature page. Then the file can be emailed or faxed and the process does not have any waste.

For situations where you need to merge and modify files, the best application is Adobe Acrobat.


The Best App for Merging and Modifying Files


Adobe Acrobat has one-click tools that make it easy to insert additional documents into a single document, remove unnecessary pages, and reorder pages. These tools are especially important when working with very large documents, documents with pages that need to be signed, documents where only certain pages are updated, and when scanning in multiple documents. 

Merging documents

Thursday, February 21, 2019

How to Ensure a Microsoft O365 License is Available to Reuse Immediately

If you have more than one license in a Microsoft Office 365 or O365 account, you know managing the licenses can sometimes be tricky. The bigger your organization, the greater the number of licenses and the easier it can be to run into issues. There are many benefits to subscribing to O365 licenses though, including the ability to reassign licenses. This is beneficial when an employee leaves as their access to the license can be removed and used for the person replacing them. This helps prevent businesses from wasting money on additional licenses.

However, it is important to know the correct way to reassign a license. There is a way to do this that allows the license to be reused immediately, while another way holds onto the license for 30 days before it can be assigned to another user. For those businesses whose number of licenses equals or nominally exceeds their number of employees, it will be critical to remove the user in the correct way so the license is available immediately.


How to Ensure a Microsoft O365 License is Available to Reuse Immediately


The way to ensure a license is immediately available for reuse is by removing the licenses from the user before removing the user. To remove a license from a former employee so that it is immediately available for reuse, follow these steps:
  • Log into the Microsoft O365 admin portal at portal.microsoft.com.
  • From the Admin dashboard, click on "Active users"

Thursday, February 14, 2019

How to Make iPhone Contacts Accessible on a Windows Device

Backing up a smart phone to a computer or laptop does not mean the data is stored in a usable format. For instance, backing up an iPhone does not mean you can go directly to the apps, images, calendar or other items easily. Some things sync with iTunes, but most things are not directly accessible from a backup and there are times when you may want some of this data without being on the same device as the backups. 

For instance, having contact or calendar information synced to a local device can be more efficient than referencing your phone every time. Luckily, there is an easy way to sync data, like contacts, making it accessible without installing iTunes or backing up the device to that machine.


How to Make iPhone Contacts Accessible on a Windows Device


To access contacts on your iPhone from a Windows device:
  • First, visit the page to download iCloud for Windows on the Windows device. 
  • Under the heading "Download iCloud for Windows", click the "Download" button to start the installer.
  • Click "Run" to run the installer.

Thursday, February 07, 2019

How to Take Square Payments Without Creating User Logins

To see this process in action, watch the video that accompanies this post.

As a payment processing service for small businesses, Square is easy to set up and easy to use. There are many benefits to using Square over accepting credit card payments directly, including:
  • Transparent service fees for all types of payments collected
  • Managing PCI compliance
  • Zero monthly and minimum fees, which is especially helpful for new businesses or those who do not need to use the service every month
  • An online presence for the items or services you sell
Another great feature is the ability to send invitations to people to connect additional devices using the Square application. By using an invitation from you, that device can accept payments on behalf of your organization. Additionally, this is done without making them an employee, or creating additional user accounts or credentials. This feature is a secure way for any business, non-profit, or other organization to host events, have remote workers, interns or volunteers, collect funds on behalf of their business. Most importantly is it accomplished all without providing unnecessary account access.


How to Take Square Payments Without Creating User Logins


Another great benefit of inviting a device to accept payments on behalf of your account is that it can be done at no additional cost to you and the setup can be accomplished within a few minutes. Below are instructions for sending an invitation to someone with a device, as well as how to accept that invitation on a device.