What Is An Andromeda C‑CAT?A C‑CAT (Client-Centric Action Team) is a dedicated team that includes one or more two Remote Service Techs, and one or more IT Field Techs whose activities are curated by a Account Coordinator(AC)—each specifically appointed to service your organization. With cat-like reflexes and precision, your Andromeda C-CAT will pounce on any IT issue, upgrade, or project. It's really the cat's meow for your IT needs!)
Professional IT Services that Andromeda Provides for Rolling Meadows, IL Businesses:
What A Few Of Our Clients Have To Say
Andromeda IT Service Offerings
Here is just a quick list demonstrating the breadth of IT services you can expect from Andromeda:
AndroPedia Tech Library
As part of our service, it is important to keep our client-partners well informed on IT developments, news, and best practices. Here is just a sampling of typical items from our AndroPediaSM library archive:
What is the Co-Managed IT Services model? Your Top 3 Questions Answered Oct 02, 2020
Co-managed IT service (CoMITS) is a rather new idea that creates a partnership between an internal IT department and an external service company like Andromeda. Co-Managed IT Services are essentially meant to help you get more done by augmenting specific elements of your IT Service and infrastructure with a professional outsourced IT team. The best part about it is the CoMITS relationship is fully customizable so you get what you need without paying for what you don’t.
Who is it for?
The co-managed IT service structure is built to be a partnership between an internal IT person/team and an MSP. It takes cooperation between the two to give an organization the best service, security, and maintenance possible.
Co-Managed IT is a great fit for:
- Your IT department that may be overwhelmed with tasks and may need some support.
- Your internal IT support that may be lacking in one or more specific skillsets. CoMIT services will fill in that gap. Andromeda provides the specialists in all fields and lends them to your organization.
How does It Work?
As stated above, the co-managed IT partnership is fully customizable, so it can mean different things to different organizations but here are a few solutions to think about:
- Internal IT handles everything with workstations & users with Andromeda handling your servers & infrastructure.
- Basically, the opposite of #1. Andromeda handles workstations & users, while you handle servers & infrastructure.
- Andromeda handles emergencies. We offer tools and best practices for your internal IT and may also do the monitoring of systems. When anything outside your internal IT departments scope of expertise comes up, we are here to support them and handle any issues. Basically, Andromeda becomes familiar with your systems, then waits on the sidelines until you need us. We have the familiarity to handle the situation quickly and painlessly.
- We are your specialists. This will seem similar to #3, but it really isn’t. When you are making hardware purchases, we can offer our advice, do the purchasing for you and also installation. Any time the internal person/team has a question, our specialist are available for consult. This includes training, monitoring, best practices and procedures, access to tools, support, management, back-up and recovery, among many other services.
- Some subset of services that is customized to fit your needs.
Is Co-managed IT For You And Your Organization?
If you have an IT person or team, then the answer is yes! Because this solution is completely customizable for your organization, there is no scenario where we can’t partner for the best results. We would both be looking out for the ultimate success of your business.
Because of the customization of the partnership, we are flexible to integrate our services with your needs. We don’t force our way on your team. We don’t step in and take over. We do work together and share responsibilities and knowledge.
Our ultimate goal is to support your organization. Our main focus and expertise as an MSP becomes a tool to use for the success of your business. This collaboration gives your team whatever they need to do the best job possible.
If you have any questions about CoMITS, then our team is here to answer them. Let’s start a conversation.
The post What is the Co-Managed IT Services model? Your Top 3 Questions Answered appeared first on Andromeda Technology Solutions.Our favorite 7 Collaboration Tools to Help Your Remote Team Stay Engaged, Productive and Motivated from Anywhere Mar 30, 2020
For many businesses, the flexibility to work-from-home (WFH) is a great perk for employees. Studies even show that employees that have the option to work remote show higher productivity and job satisfaction.
There are many benefits to remote workforce but there can also be struggles/challenges for leaders and managers trying to maintain culture, productivity and a team environment.
We’ve put together a list of our favorite tools to help us get the job done in house or from home.
Our favorite 7 Collaboration Tools to Help Your Remote Team Stay Engaged, Productive and Motivated from Anywhere
1 Microsoft Office 365 for Business
This stack of Software as a Service (SaaS) products allows your team to utilize classic programs like Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and more in new ways.
Office 365 also opens the doors for your team to utilize cloud storage/collab tools like OneDrive and SharePoint. Files saved to this software can be accessed at home, on the go, in the office or anywhere with an internet connection.
2 Microsoft Teams
This product is included with Office 365 but deserves its own section because of all the different things it sets your team up to do including:
- Individual and team-based IMs
- Live collaboration with Microsoft documents inside of the Teams tool
- Audio & Video calls
- Screen share
- Add on apps for even more productivity boosts
3 Zoom Video & Web Conferencing
Zoom is one of the leading web/video conferencing tools on the market. With free and multiple paid options, it is likely you can find a solution to fit the needs of your organization and your business.
Some of our favorite features in Zoom include:
- Personal meeting room to start a meeting any time
- Outlook integrations for easy schedule
- Webinar capabilities with panel, hosts, Q&A, chat etc.
- Video and/or Audio calls
- Mobile App
Slack is one of the leading direct communication tools for business. You can message teammates directly; create group chats and you can also communicate in channels. With seemingly endless add-ons and extensions, Slack is a leader when it comes to connecting teams.
Andromeda Technology Solutions recently transitioned from Slack to Microsoft Teams for our own internal communications but some of the features we loved in Slack include:
- Direct messaging
- Audio/Video calling
- Channels for group needs
- Easy integration of apps
- Custom emojis for fun
Trello is a neat tool that helps with project management and tracking. You can use it for personal projects or teams to manage workflows, status and many things in between. This is also another tool you can use with a free version to test out and see what works for your team.
Our favorite Trello features:
- Easy to user interface with drag & drop ‘cards’
- Easy upload multiple types of media – docs, links, photos etc.
- Individual/Group task assignment
- Mobile application
- Labels and tags for organization
Basecamp is a project and team management tool used by all kinds of organizations and teams globally. This one tool can help you organize, communicate and collaborate on multiple projects while keeping all the info you need in one space. You can even give clients access to Basecamp so that they can communicate and keep up to date on status of your team.
Our Web Design team uses Basecamp daily to move projects along.
Some of their favorite features include:
- To-do Lists
- Message Boards
- Scheduling tool
- Document & File storage
- Group chat
Zapier is one of the industry leaders in connecting web apps for automation. And since you’re team is getting tons done on-the-go, you’ll want to check out all the ways this tool can simplify your workflows and help your team work more efficiently. Zapier connects the apps you use every day and helps cut down busy work.
Additionally, Zapier knows what it means to work remote, they boast a 100% remote workforce with over 200 teammates working all over the globe.
A connection from one software to another via Zapier is called a Zap. You can check out 2000+ zaps and the tool here
Finding the right mix of tools is as individualized as the job. We hope these suggestions help you to create an environment that is productive and satisfying. If you would like to discuss your unique situation, give us a call at (815) 836-0030 or email our team.
The post Our favorite 7 Collaboration Tools to Help Your Remote Team Stay Engaged, Productive and Motivated from Anywhere appeared first on Andromeda Technology Solutions.Toy Company Mattel Was Latest Victim Of Ransomware Attack Nov 14, 2020
When you were growing up, your parents probably bought you all sorts of toys made by Mattel. From Hotwheels to Barbie to the full line of Toy Story toys and more, Mattel is a global force in the world of toys.
In fact, they are the second largest toy maker in the world, with more than 24,000 employees and gross revenue of nearly six billion dollars in 2019.
On July 28th, 2020, the company's network was successfully breached and a strain of ransomware deployed against them, which encrypted some of the company's files and caused disruptions in the firm's ongoing operations.
The company released an official disclosure about the incident which reads in part, as follows:
"On July 28, 2020, Mattel discovered that it was the victim of a ransomware attack on its information technology systems that caused data on a number of systems to be encrypted. Promptly upon detection of the attack, Mattel began enacting its response protocols and taking a series of measures to stop the attack and restore impacted systems. Mattel believes it has contained the attack and, although some business functions were temporarily impacted, Mattel was able to restore its critical operations."
Part of the company's response was to launch a forensic investigation in cooperation with law enforcement. That process has been completed, and based on its conclusion, Mattel updated their initial disclosure. It now says that it does not appear that any customer, supplier, consumer or employee data was exfiltrated by the hackers.
Of interest, neither the initial disclosure or the update gave any indication of the specific ransomware strain used, or the exact scale of the impact. Although there's circumstantial evidence that suggests the strain in question was Trickbot.
Whatever the strain, the bottom line is that no customer data appears to have been stolen. So if you have an account on Mattel's website, there's nothing you need to do, except be aware that the attack occurred.