Cloud backup is also referred to as online back and comprises sending a selection of your computer data over the internet to a computer in a different building or country.
The computer (also referred to as a server) is hosted by a third party who will charge the backup company a fee depending on the space required on their computers, the bandwidth needed, or the number of users/computers being backed up.
You will have heard of some of these
A Server is owned by Company A.
They rent out space to Company B. (They may not deal directly with the public).
Company B will hire space on Company A computer.
Company B will provide you with the online software needed to back up your computer.
Your home/office computer that has the data that needs to be backed up
Why Should I Backup My Computer
Your computer is home to vital peices of information that you want to maintain for many years to come. Stored data could include client records, fiancial records and legal documentation. There is a legal requirements to hold critical informtion for a set period of time. A secure location for data storage is essential.
A backup system will keep these documents in a safe place if something were to happen to your computer, and you may read below to learn how a backup system operates.
1: Why Do You Need A Back up System?
A backup system is the only guaranteed way to protect the data you keep on your computer.
The backup system may save data to an online server, a particular disk or a drive that you can attach to your computer. Ensure all essential documents are backup regularly just in case your computer fails.
2: Cloud, Onsite and Offsite Back ups
Cloud backup systems use the virtual cloud server to protect your documents. You save directly to a server that you can access from any other computer, and the system is much faster than any other you might use. Onsite backups are disk drivers or hard drives that save all your information. Disks are portable and recover of data is easy to access. The disatdangage is you could lose the disk.
Offsite backups are servers that connect with your computer via your Internet connection. The company that manages the servers must help you recover your documents. Datastorage is completely secure. Most offsite backup servers will comply is ISO 27001.
3: Advantages And Disadvantages Of The Cloud vs. A Disk
Any computer can connect to a disk drive. Additionally, disk drives are portable and easily lost or stolen. However, disk drives are slow, hold limited data and are time-consuming. In addition, the security of data could be an issue when relying on a disk drive for backing up data.
A cloud server recovers your data via your Internet connection. The service you restore your whole computer, but you must have a signal to complete the process. Finally, disks are valuable if you travel to places without Internet service.
4: How Often does my data need to be backed up?
Cloud backup software can be schedueld to back up changed data every hour. Those with a disk drive may choose to update at the end of each day for safety’s sake.
In Conclusion Why should I back up my computer
In conclusion to protect the data you should back up your data regularly. A fatell hardware crash will make it virtually impossable to recover the data.
Services I should not have offered as a Virtual Assistant is easy to say when I look back at my career. When setting up your own business as a virtual assistant, one of the first things you have to decide, is what services should you offer. Like most businesses, this can be one of the fun aspects of starting from scratch and being your boss. However, at some point, you’re going to need to earn money, and this is when your creative skills are going to have to come to the forefront.
When I started as a virtual assistant in 2005, I was determined only to do the jobs that I wanted to do. I’d worked in the corporate arena for many years. I knew the majority of office tasks that businesses would need. I also knew the tasks that I didn’t particularly enjoy doing. It was therefore easy not to offer those tasks.
Nevertheless one of my first clients asked if I would undertake telephone answering for him. Having no income coming at att at this time, I jumped at the task. It is only with hindsight that we can look back upon the tasks that we do and decide whether they are good or bad. The decision to answer his phone calls directed the way myPA operated ever since.
Services I should not have offered as Virtual Assistant
My client wanted me to answer the telephone for his business when he couldn’t. That meant I had to be in the office from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. On the whole, for a small business that sounds like a good idea. I am at my desk, growing my business and earning money. However, offering a telephone answering service that only pays when you answer the telephone is hugely limiting. I found that I was sitting in my office and the phone only rang once a day. That meant that I was in the position to invoice for one telephone call. If I charged £250 per call that would be fantastic and I earned £250 that day. However, the majority of telephone answering fees are circa £1 per call. That meant I was sitting at my desk all day waiting for a telephone call and earnt £1.
As a result of this contract, I had to find other work, which would mean I earned an income while I stayed at my desk, nine till five. This meant that I answered more telephone calls for additional people. I was, therefore, making my desk job financially viable. However, as a small business, I need to go out and network and earn more money. That meant I had to employ staff. Employing staff means paying national insurance, holiday pay, sick pay and now pensions. All these increases in outgoings meant that they had to earn more incoming. It then becomes a vicious circle. I employed staff to answer a phone when I wasn’t there which meant I had to go out and earn more money to pay the salaries of the staff I was employing so that I could go out
What services should a Virtual Assistant offer?
Those that you enjoy and are good at. Those that will give you a good return for your hard work and are profitable.
I’m not saying that answering telephones is a bad service to offer, but you do need to make sure you have the infrastructure in place to make sure that the service becomes financially viable for you. Selecting the services, you offer as a virtual assistant is vitally important. You need to understand the ramifications of their services. Having said that, if the infrastructure is in place and you offer a time-consuming service that requires additional staff and you make a decent profit then the service is of benefit to you and your business.
When setting up your virtual PA business always remember that the first client is your business. The services you offer hax to be rewarding to you and your business emotionally, financially and suit your skillset.
Have you ever been asked to take the minutes of a meeting and then started to worry about missing the important points when taking minutes. Don’t worry, this is always the first question I get when I start to run my Minute Taking Training Course.
The first misconception of taking minutes of a meeting is that the entire responsibiliyt rests with the minute taker. This is just not the case. The Minute taker is the first line of defence when taking mintues, but then the chiar is there to check the minutes are a true and accurate representation of the disucssion of the meeting. Finally the delegates of the meeting also agree and check the mintues. All of these people form part of a team, the meeting team.
Missing the important points when taking minutes?
So please, if you are the minute taker and worry about missing the important points in a meeting don’t. Here are my Tips for Preparing for a Meeting so that you won’t miss anything.
Tip One – missing the important points when taking minutes?
Read the last three months (or if a weekly meeting read the last 6 copies) of meetings. This is to that you can get an understanding of the language used, the projects underway and the topics you will be reporting on.
Tip Two – missing the important points when taking minutes
Meet with the Chair 10-15 minutes before the meeting to discuss any items on the agenda
Tip Three – missing the important ponts when taking minutes
Sit to the left of the Chair, unless the Chair is left handed then sit on the left. You, as the minute taker are there to support the Chair and you can only do this if you can discuss any issues that may arise during the meeting.
Tip Four- missing the important points when taking minutes
Take a bottle of water into the meeting with you, you need to stay hydrated and alert.
Tip Five – missing the important points when taking minutes
Take some boiled sweets or fruit with you so that you can keep your sugar levels up. Remember when taking the minutes of a meeting for 1 hour it is the same as taking a 3 hour A level maths exam.
Tip Six- missing the important points when taking minutes
Practice your listening skills especially Active Listening.
Tip Seven – missing the important points when taking minutes
Practice your Critically thinking processes.
Good luck and try and enjoy the process of taking minutes of a meeting. Remember you are your companies Historian, you are a paid voyeur.
Do you want to change the signature image in Outlook 2016 to make your emails look professional, elegant and smart? With more and more options in MS Office and outlook, sometimes we just need a few hints along the way. To make sure your signature image in outlook 2016 is perfect then just follow these very simple instructions.
Instructions to resize a Signature Image in Outlook 2016
Open outlook as you would ordinarily do select the option to create an email as you would typically do.
A new email window will then appear.
Select the option Insert and then Signature.
A list of all the current signatures installed on your computer will appear. At the very bottom is the word Signature. Select this option, see below.
A new window will appear.
Select the email signature you want to edit, if you have not created an email signature select the option New, see above, in this example I will collect Corrigo free trial. Enter the narrative you wish to have on the signature in the box provided. Then add your image by selecting add picture icon, see above. This will then require you to find the location of the image on your computer or server.
Once the image has been selected, it will appear in the dialogue box. See below.
Using your mouse, click ONCE on the image. You will notice little squares appearing on the image, see below.
Once these little squares appear, press the right-hand button on your mouse and click once only.
A new screen will appear. Select the option Picture, see below.
This will open another window, see below. On this window select the option Size, see below.
The following screen will appear. It is from here that you can now resize your image. Please make sure that the Lock aspect ratio option is selected. If you have decided that 7.63 cm would be perfect, enter 7.63 in the Height option and press the enter button only. This will automatically adjust the Width.
Once the image is of the right size, please copy this narrative and place it under the image. Then select OK.
Does it cost money to take someone to Small Claims?
Working out the interest on a Small Claims request
You’ll have to go to court if…
After the Hearing
1 Introduction – Small Claims
You can take court action against someone who owes you money and won’t pay. This is known as making a court claim. It can also be known as taking someone to a ‘small claims court’. You usually have to pay a court fee, and you may not win your case or get your money back.
2 How to take Court Action
The government has tried to make the process as easy as possible. The easiest way to claim it be completing the form online
At PA Tips and Secretarial Support, we want to give you all the information you need to keep ahead of your boss and those around you. To help you stay ahead, we have created a number of posts that will help you understand some of the technical terminologies that are being spoken about in the press and workplace. Today we would like to talk about Computer Ransomware.
So, What is Computer Ransomware?
It is a specific type of computer virus that is made to trick people into paying money to have the virus taken off of their computer. However, there are several types of Ransomware, and some are much more serious than others.
Types of Computer Ransomware
Encryption Ransomware – These viruses will encrypt some or all of a computer’s hard drive, and it is often not possible to get the files back until a person has the decryption key. Encryption Ransomware is the most severe form of Ransomware as it can cause people to lose data on their computer.
Lock-screen Ransomware – Lock-screen viruses will lock a person’s screen after their computer boots and tell them that they need to pay money to access their computer.
Scareware – Scareware is designed to scare people into believing that their computer has a more severe virus. The resulting in a payment to remove the infection. These are usually fake antivirus programs that tell people their computer or laptop has a number of viruses.
How do you get Computer Ransomware?
You get Computer Ransomware on your computers in the same ways that you get other computer viruses. Ransomware normally affects a computer after you have opened an infected file. These usually come in things like email attachments, but they could also be files that you have downloaded off of the Internet.
How do you know you’ve got it!
You will usually find out that you have Ransomware on your computer when a screen pops up that tells them they need to pay money to have a virus removed. A pop might take several forms depending on the type of Ransomware utilised.
Preventing and Removing Computer Ransomware
To avoid getting Ransomware on a computer, it is best to run antivirus software all of the time.
Also, you should make sure that all of the software that your browsers use is up to date. This includes things like Java and Flash.
After determining that Ransomware has infected a computer, it is best to run an antivirus check. Then remove any viruses found and inform your IT department.
If a computer is completely locked down, it is recommended that the computer is started in Safe Mode. Alternatively from a flash drive and run a virus scan from there. This should clear up most Ransomware viruses. However, those who are unlucky enough to contract a virus that encrypts their file system may be forced to reformat their hard drive and reinstall the operating system. When this happens, you will lose all of the files on the hard drive. Because of this, regular backups are essential. Report any such virus or attack on your computer to the IT Department immediately.
In Conclusion, Computer Ransomware is nasty
All of us at PA Tips and Secretarial Support think that Computer Ransomware is a nasty piece of code. It is created by people who just want to cause trouble and extort money from us. Gone are the days when someone would rob you in person, now they want to extract money digitally. The perpetrators may see this as a victimless crime, only attacking companies or big organisations.
However, at PA Tips and Secretarial Support, we have one question to ask. When was the last time you heard your boss say, ‘Yes we have lots of money lets just buy…’. We don’t as businesses are struggling and now we have to take into account extorsion. Alternatively, everytime your company spends money, it could be your bonus or pay rise they are spending. This is just my opinion, but I hope you will agree with some of it.
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I am a great believer in having an email signature on all my emails. I am also a great believer in keeping up with modern work techniques and changes that take place. Which is why I started this blog giving PA Tips and Secretarial Support.
When I started school things changed every decade, then the age of computing arrived, and things changed every 18 months, and now, with the aid of social media, they seem to change every minute. As a consequence; I attended a training course myself to find out what changes may be occurring over the next few months in our industry.
What is an email signature for?
To my utter amazement, it seems to be with emails and email signatures. It is one of the strangest changes and I would never have thought about 12 months ago. To be fair, even last week. The standard convention has always been that when you send a business email, you add a signature. The signature tells the recipient your name, your job title, and contact details. Quite often there is a legal disclaimer. The disclaimer will state that the information provided is for the recipient only and if misdirected, please delete the email. Then, of course, there is the small advertisement about the company or a testimonial telling prospective customers or clients how good your business is. As I said, this is the standard, but each company may be different and offer different guidelines. My company abides by the above, and I have been pleased with this style of format.
Never the less, it has come to my attention that large organisations have started to remove surnames from people’s email signatures to have a generic email address. When I have called organisations and the person on the other end of the phone has given me an email address that is generic I am told that they will receive the email or that their first name is sufficient, and the message will reach them. It is not something I have given much thought to in the past.
However, it has been brought to my attention that the reason for this is that many staff (especially ladies) have found that during their working day they have given out their name, their email, and works telephone number. All useful forms of communication for a client or customer to contact them. This is where it gets interesting. Some of those people have then been stalked out of the office by the clients or customers. The client or customer has been able to locate them from the minimal amount of detail they obtained from the regular communication they had during a working relationship and then taken it one step further.
Facebook is an excellent tool for communication, as is Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest etc. However, we know there are risks associated with our personal data on these sites. For example, I have never put my birthday on social media or any reference to the day or month. I don’t put my address or house number, including photos of my home that could identify where I live. I have even found that I moderate my Facebook posts and opinions when using the various social media platforms. A form of self-restriction.
It only takes a few minutes for someone to find out those details, and you could have lost your identity or find that you are the proud owner of a new credit card that owes circa £10,000 worth of debt. It has never really occurred to me to extend some of that security to the emails I send, and the details people can glean from that.
In Conclusion, what will my email signature look like
As I said at the beginning, I had never thought about an email signature in this contex. It is fascinating when you spend a few minutes thinking about how vulnerable we have, and are becoming, digitally. So, the big question. Will I change? My email address only uses my first name, so there is no change there. What about my signature? You know, I think I may get the ladies in my office to change there’s. As the owner of a business and advising about PA Tips and Secretarial Support, I have put myself forward as the face of my company. I don’t feel I can then hide behind a title. I will, however, take a little more care about what I put in my emails and the amount of details people could glean from them.
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What does a PA Do? and indeed, what is a PA. A PA is Personal Assistant to the manager, department or CEO. They provide administrative support and take care of their boss so that they can
What does a PA do?
Perform their jobs with ease and confidence. A Personal Assistant could also be called an Executive Assistant or even a Virtual PA or Virtual EA. In this article, I will use the term PA to cover all of above.
Being a Personal Assistant (PA) is like being a fine artist. You have to have the ability to see an end product using the raw materials you have available to you. Anticipate the likes and needs of those you are looking after, without them knowing or understanding what they like or dislike. A PA has to be meticulous about their time management, planning and organisational skills and then make these tasks look smooth and effortless. Any PA unable to master these three skills will inevitably find the role as a Personal Assistant difficult. A PA should have their finger on the proverbial button of any activity their boss is undertaking at any time. Not only that, a PA has to anticipate what the boss requires today tomorrow and next month.
So What does a PA do to make sure they are on the ball?
A PAs mantra or go to question should always be “What is the next question” their boss is going to ask. Ensure they can answer that question and then the next question their boss will ask. The standard Who, What, Where, When, Why and How questions should be applied to any and all tasks a PA undertakes. Once a PA has mastered this tool they will start to see and show improvements in their PA ability and demonstrate how capable and competent they are in their role.
All PAs need to demonstrate consistency in their workload and be as enthusiastic on Monday morning at 9 am as they are on Friday at 5 pm. They need to be effective and efficient in all the tasks that they undertake and become proactive instead of reactive. It is recommended that a PA schedules at least 60% of their working day. This will leave 40% of their day to be reactive. We, therefore, advise each PA to plan tasks in advance. Taking note of business deadlines and the expectation is essential. A PA will also have to remember their boss has deadlines that could rely on work they have to do.
PAs Personal Recommendations
We would also recommend that every PA take a few minutes at the end of the day to note at least five successes they have had that day. It is true to say that everyone will have a bad day at work at some point. Noting down any success they have will help any PA remember how good they are. How well they perform their job and organising their boss.
In conclusion, What does a PA Do?
When the role of a PA is performed correctly, it is a work of art. The position is seamless, timeless and a thing of beauty. Their boss will never know the amount of work, effort and organisational skills the PA will put into their role. All of this, to ensure that the boss has a perfect working environment so they can perform at their peak.
The PA is indeed the unsung hero of any organisation. It is time for all PAs to stand up and be proud of the jobs that they do. The tasks they undertake and show what a strong, determined woman can do. For more information about becoming a PA or attending a training course click here.
The PA Tips on this post are those that are highly recommended to become an effective PA. It is also vitally important that a PA keeps on track of all new technology, new ways of working and are open to any PA Tips they can glean from colleagues and even their boss.
Virtual Assistant can work anywhere anytimeHaving run a successful Virtual Assistant business for nearly ten years, I am frequently asked What is a Virtual Assistant. I suppose the term is not familiar to everybody and it can sound like quite a strange concept. The question is then followed with “Why would I use a Virtual Assistant?” Let us look at the idea of the Virtual Assistant and the reasons why people and businesses choose to employ one.
I would describe a Virtual Assistant (VA) as. Someone who works for a small business or organisation but not directly employed by them. They are accountable for the work they do on their behalf. They are, in effect, a subcontractor who provides secretarial and/or administrative support.
The duties of a VA can include scheduling activities such as meetings, organising travel, social media, customer service, email campaigns, book-keeping and much more. A VA can work from their office (they might, for example, rent office space in a shared building), from their home office, or from the offices of their clients. They can also do a combination of any of these.
The definition of a Virtual Assistant on the Wikipedia website is as follows:
“A Virtual Assistant (typically abbreviated to VA, also called a virtual office assistant) is an entrepreneur who provides professional administrative, technical, or creative (social) assistance to clients from a home office…. They usually work for other small businesses, brokers and consultancy groups. Reports state that there are as few as 5,000-8,000 or as many as 25,000 Virtual Assistants worldwide; the profession is growing in centralised economies with “fly-in, fly-out” (FIFO) staffing practices.” www.wikipedia.org.
There is currently a debate in the industry about the title of a Virtual Assistant and whether ‘we’ as an industry should change it. The general feeling is that the title ‘Assistant’, (to those who aren’t familiar with the industry), doesn’t give an accurate impression of the variety of roles a VA can fulfil.
I believe there are four types of Virtual Assistants:
Virtual Assistant (VA). A VA is someone who can assist their client with some secretarial and administrative tasks, usually on a short-term project basis. Equally, they may undertake individual jobs over a period; for example, creating a database of business cards.
Virtual Personal Assistant (VPA). A VPA is someone who works in close collaboration with a small business owner, providing secretarial and administrative support. The VPA will be there long-term. The relationship is similar to that of employer and employee. Nevertheless, the VPA will only visit the client once or twice a week, and despite the longevity of the relationship, is self-employed.
Virtual Executive Assistant (VEA). A VEA is someone who works in close collaboration with a small business owner to provide secretarial and administrative support. A VEA could be part of the business development strategy for the company. The VEA is an important part of the business, becoming one of the planners and authorising partners.
Personal Assistant. A PA is someone who works for one person in one organisation. However, in the VA world, many VAs call themselves PAs as many employers/clients understand this term better.
What is a Virtual Assistant
In conclusion, the answer to What is a Virtual Assistant is that the role has many different nuances. However, the role is primarily an administrative role that helps people and businesses undertake the numerous administrative activities. It is very similar to that of an Executive PA.
This is an extract from my book entitled Becoming a Virtual Assistant and avoid the Mistakes I made. In this book, you will discover many PA tips on starting your own business or discover some PA tips and Secretarial Support if you are in full-time employment that will help you understand your boss and their reason and reactions on many of the tasks they undertake.
What is a Virtual Assistant and How to Become a Virtual Assistant
The term firewall is thrown about by those in the know about computer security, but what is it?
In the most general of terms, a firewall is a defence measure that your computer uses in an effort to protect itself from unwanted programmes and outside access to your computer. Think of it as a kind of filter that guards you against the dangers of the internet.
How does a Firewall work?
A firewall works by comparing information to a set of rules. For instance, if a website or online (more…)
Welcome to the Blog posts of Julie and the team. If you have been on one of Julie's training courses, you know that she is passionate about PA, EAs and Secretaries being the best they can be. She also has very strong opinions about what a PA, EA and Secretary should and shouldn't do.