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Ancoris Blog

The Ancoris blog covers all our latest views and news about our company, cloud computing, Google for Work and its ecosystem of solutions.

Friday, 04 September 2015 14:51

Ancoris recognised for National Channel Award

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It was announced this week that Ancoris is a finalist in CRN's Channel Awards. Ancoris was nominated in the 'Cloud Services Provider of the Year' category, awarded to a solutions provider that demonstrates excellence in the delivery of cloud computing solutions, service and support to end user customers. To select the winner, the judges will now take into consideration each…
We are delighted that Ancoris is a finalist in the BCS & Computing UK IT Industry Awards for our work transforming Epic, the UK's first staff led youth mutual. The project, in the final for 'Workplace Transformation Project of the Year' category, looks set to save Epic around £140,000 a year in costs as a result of deploying a Google…
Wednesday, 19 August 2015 09:13

Ideas and inspiration with Google for Work

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We are happier, more productive and effective when we have the freedom to collaborate and innovate using tools we are familiar with. Below we discuss our 3 favourite tips from Google Insights for the Workplace 1.  8 Ways to Innovate like GoogleGoogle Chairman, Eric Schmidt says "The story of innovation has not changed. It has always been a small team…
Monday, 10 August 2015 14:58

Google Drive plug-in for Microsoft Office

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With Google Drive you can keep all your important files in one place, then open them with your choice of apps and devices. Now Google is offering new ways to work together with Office files, using the Google Drive plug-in for Microsoft Office. How it works: With the new Google Drive plug-in, people using Office for Windows can now open…
Google has recently launched a Transformation Gallery to share examples of business processes that have been transformed using the Google platform. Here we look at how you can use this tool to help your transformation journey. How will this tool help me? Whether you have already identified the areas you want to transform or you are just beginning your transformation…
Companies that implement Google Apps for Work can expect to see a ROI of around 300% and a payback period of just one month, according to a report released by IT industry experts Forrester Consulting. The findings are based on analysing the experiences of half a dozen organisations that have been using Google Apps for several years. Forrester Consulting's experts…
Google Maps have recently changed their terms of service to allow paid for ads to appear in applications using Google Maps. This means websites using Google Maps, such as store locators can have paid for ads added to them, potentially by competitors. Google added paid for ads to the Google Maps application a while ago and you may have noticed…
One of the benefits of cloud computing is that it can make it simpler to give users access to the tools and data they need to do their jobs better. This is not just about making it simpler to maintain your IT systems or support a wide range of end-user devices. It should also make it simpler for your business…
Epic CIC, the country's first employee-led mutual, looks set to save around £140,000 a year as a result of deploying a Google for Work solution that will allow it to focus more of its budget on providing services for children and young people.  The organisation, which already provides a comprehensive range of youth support services throughout the Royal Borough of…
We are pleased to announce the launch of Chromesales UK, our eCommerce site to purchase Google Device Management licenses, Chrome devices, support and consulting services. Since the first commercially available Chromebooks from Acer and Samsung made their debut in May 2011, Chrome devices have gone from strength to strength, first in education and now increasingly in businesses. Today, most PC manufacturers are…
Appogee, has today launched Appogee HR, a new cloud-based online HR management system. Appogee HR helps customers to be compliant with their employee records management obligations and gives employees the ability to self serve, updating their own personal information. Appogee HR simplifies HR management for both businesses and staff. It securely stores employee data, records and company documents online, eliminating…
Successful retailers are finding new ways to empower customers with valuable information to keep them engaged and drive faster purchases both online and in store. Providing local store information with a map is one of the most powerful ways they are doing this, with the most successful providing information such as local inventory levels to empower customers to make buying…
We've previously written about how digitally mature companies significantly outperform their industry peers. According to research by Capgemini Consulting and the MIT Center for Digital Business, they enjoy profits that are 26% higher on average than their competitors. So how do you become a digitally mature company? According to the report, here are the five success factors: a strong vision…
Businesses are bombarded with calls to invest in a bewildering array of digital technologies, from social media to mobile to data analytics. There are many high-profile success stories for small, fast-moving startups, but what does digital investment really mean for larger, established companies? The answer, according to research by Capgemini Consulting and the MIT Center for Digital Business, is that…
Construction group Lafarge Tarmac will become one of the UK's largest users of Chromebooks when it completes a plan to replace 80% of its Windows desktops and laptops with Chromebooks and Chromeboxes. This follows the deployment of Google Apps for Work to all 6000 employees after the company was established in 2013 as a joint venture between Anglo American and…
The last year has seen an upsurge in businesses turning to cloud-based unified communications (UC) as they wrestle with the challenge of keeping employees connected in the face of increased mobility, bring your own device (BYOD) policies and the need for greater flexibility and scalability. Market research firm Infonetics has seen sales of cloud-based UC grow by nearly a third…
Business managers are now ahead of their IT colleagues in embracing cloud computing, according to the the latest annual State of the CIO survey from CIO Magazine. Nearly 60% of business leaders see the role of head of IT as a "cloud wrangler", orchestrating various external providers, compared with just 50% of CIOs. But business leaders don't expect cloud services…
Getting customers excited and talking about your brand can be tough. The modern consumer has a short attention span, expects more and is generally tough to engage with. It can however be surprising what small things can end up working and becoming a hit with customers. Using mapping technology, maybe surprisingly, is one way to do this. It may not…
This video shows you how you can easily edit Microsoft Office files within Chrome.    
   
The Admin Console has a new look. The redesign comes as part of a Google-wide move to updated interface design standards intended to make products easier to navigate and use. This video highlights a few things that have changed.    
   
Sunday, 08 February 2015 21:12

Get unlimited storage with Drive for Work

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Get unlimited online storage for your business and get access to all your files on the move.
   
It is the second year in a row that Chromebooks top the Amazon best seller list at Christmas in the USA. This year, they take all 3 slots, whereas last year they only took 2, another indication of their momentum. The top three Chromebooks sold on Amazon over the holiday season included models by Acer, Asus, and HP: Acer C720…
Thursday, 15 January 2015 16:44

The Cabinet Office moves to Google Apps

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The Cabinet Office technology transformation programme has reached another milestone, with its outsourcing contract with Fujitsu expiring this month. From January onwards, the Cabinet Office will run its own in-house service with CTO, Tom Read as its lead. This approach is expected to achieve 40 percent savings compared to the outsourced services. The Department has 2,430 civil servants who will…
Earlier this year, Google introduced a new interface for Google Drive, which included a new way of importing, selecting and managing files. This was the most significant in a number of updates to Docs and Drive in Google Apps, with additional tools for working with forms, images and tables introduced over previous months. With all of these exciting new features…
So far I have covered using location to build your omnichannel strategy with tools to interact with customers, including using store locators, mobile and geofencing to engage with and improve the customer journey. A further powerful use of location is for internal visualisation and decision making. This involves using the vast amounts of data you collect about shoppers behaviour to…
This short video explains very clearly the difference between the standard version of Google Apps and its more advanced version Google Drive for Work. Please note that Google Drive for Work is the marketing name for this storage solution and Google Apps Unlimited is the SKU name for this offering. You will see these terms used interchangeably.
In…
Three of Google's retail customers recently took part in a hangout to talk about their experience with Google Chrome devices. Google has now shared a video of the hangout and we really think it's worth your time to take a look. In this video, each of the three customers shows how it's been able to use Google Chrome devices to improve…
In a previous blog, we looked at how data leaks from ungoverned file sharing, using consumer-grade apps like Box, Dropbox and SkyDrive, may now present as much of a security risk for organisations as data theft and other malicious act. To tackle that risk, businesses need to understand what their users are currently doing and which apps they're using. They'll…
Cloud computing is delivering huge benefits to businesses, but it's also creating some new challenges. A recent report by the Ponemon Institute found that employees looking to get their work done more quickly are routinely violating company security policies by using personal file sharing products like Box, Dropbox and SkyDrive to share documents with colleagues. The resulting potential for data…
In previous posts, I discussed how location should be central to your omnichannel strategy. A very powerful tool to take your personal 1 to 1 marketing to the next level includes mobile and geofencing technology to target personalised advertising and offers based on location. When geofencing is used correctly, it can double the ROI of your marketing campaigns and increase…
Wednesday, 15 October 2014 12:52

Why you should make your store locator mobile ready

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Just about every retailer who have bricks and mortar stores has some kind of store locator. These vary greatly in functionality but surprisingly few are fully mobile compatible and optimised for use on smartphones. With the explosion of mobile, now two-thirds of people in Britain own a smartphone and 71% of smartphone shoppers use a store locator to find a…
Are your employees using consumer file-sharing services? Google Drive for Work is born in the cloud and built for secure corporate shared document access in an increasingly mobile world.  Because of this heritage, it goes way beyond other office productivity suites crafted for the PC age and retrofitted for the cloud. And unlike other storage and sharing cloud offering, Google…
The Google Apps Marketplace is the one stop shop for hundreds of third party apps which complement Google Apps for Work. Until now, it has been a well kept secret to all but Google Apps administrators. This is because only they could add these apps to their domain. As of September, managers and employees can add apps which help them…
Atmosphere Live, Google first digital event on interactive media was attended by over 20,000 viewers and went ahead without a hitch for over three hours. The event is now available on demand and here are the two keynotes which caught our eye. The Next Generation of Cloud (Scroll to 1.36) - Urs Hölze At Google for 15 years, Urs Hölze…
76% of customers prefer to purchase in-store and 71% of smartphone shoppers use a store locator to find a shop. Making sure people can easily locate and get to your store with a web and mobile locator is the starting point of a positive shopping experiance.  A locator can be used not only to help customers find and navigate to your…
Monday, 08 September 2014 14:57

Building an omnichannel strategy using location

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In a recent Retail Week report, retailers rated omnichannel the top priority for 2014 and this is not surprising when further research has shown omnichannel shoppers spend 50% more than single channel shoppers. Location and mapping can be key to success in omnichannel, helping businesses provide customers with a personalised and consistent experience across all channels and make better business…
Paul Taylor, the FT's personal technology columnist reviews Chromebooks for Business and looks at two models from Acer and Samsung. In the three years since Chromebooks were launched internet access has become ubiquitous and offline capability is available for a wider range of applications. Paul acknowledges that some of the early issues have gone away and is complimentary about Chrome…
The announcement of Google Drive for Work today will be disruptive to the corporate cloud storage marketplace and a real alternative to Dropbox, Box and Microsoft OneDrive. The new premium service is an advanced business focused version of the existing Drive service, it adds further administration controls, advanced file audit reporting and eDiscovery services so organisations can monitor the communications…
Tuesday, 25 February 2014 16:54

Chromebook comes of age

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A year ago, we predicted that IT departments would consider putting Android, iOS and Chrome devices into the mix rather than automatically refreshing with the latest generation of Windows-based systems. It turns out they're not just considering them but purchasing them – in rapidly increasing numbers. Research from NPD Group shows that, in just eight months, Chromebooks have taken off to…
The Cloud Skills Academy, developed by Appogee, the Products Division of Ancoris Limited, is an e-learning resource that provides help pages, interactive demonstrations, tips, shortcuts and FAQs on all topics in Google Apps.   From today, every user of Cloud Skills Academy will have a Learning Record which provides a history of all topics they have read in the Academy, as…
The jury may still be out on whether consumers will embrace "wearables" like Google Glass and smart watches, but the next year will see innovative organisations putting both "wearables" and the growing range of extremely low-cost Android devices now available to use in a variety of business situations. Expect to see high-end wearables, which allow images to be fed to…
Until now, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has largely had the market for "hyper scalable" server-on-demand services to itself, but all that has changed with Google Compute Engine (GCE) moving out of beta and into general availability. Both AWS and GCE provide highly scalable infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) offerings that are typically used by social media platforms, by e-commerce, streaming TV and online…
Although computers can seem like they're everywhere these days, there are still many jobs that have yet to be touched by IT. That's usually because previous generations of technology were either impractical – getting in the way of workers doing their jobs – or too expensive to deploy, maintain and support for a remote workforce numbering in the hundreds or…
While much of the talk so far about location-aware apps (also known as geo fencing) has focused on targeting adverts at consumers, the coming year will see apps emerge that improve the way companies deliver services to existing customers. Typically, these apps will use the customer crossing a geofence to kick off the first step in delivering the service. For…
Tuesday, 14 January 2014 12:18

Enterprise social to become mainstream

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Social tools have been making inroads into business for a while in an informal way. However, until recently, these tools lacked enterprise-strength control over what could be shared, where and with whom. Many of the larger organisations who would benefit from a more "social" approach to internal communications have, rightly, been wary of exploring what "enterprise social" could do for…
April 2014 sees the end of extended support for Windows XP, which still powers around 30% of all installed PCs. This will finally force many organisations to look for replacements for their current PCs, laptops and netbooks and will accelerate the corporate use of a wider range of devices and operating systems. Although these users, who are largely SMEs, are likely to…
Tuesday, 07 January 2014 13:13

Trends and Technologies to watch in 2014

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It is that time of year again, when we take stock before we look ahead.  Our 2013 predictions came true as we saw the shift towards cloud computing accelerate.  With the economy getting back on track, there is plenty of scope to bring in innovation and business transformation.  Here are the trends and technologies which we expect to gain momentum in 2014.…
The cloud computing landscape has changed dramatically since Google Apps for Business was launched in 2007. Back then, deploying cloud solutions such as Google Apps and salesforce.com was about delivering improved mobility and collaboration at lower cost for specific processes – such as email and CRM – which are business critical but relatively standardised. Today, the cloud is about delivering…
You'd expect us, here at Ancoris, to tell you that Google Apps for Business is the best cloud solution for your organisation, large or small – but that's now been confirmed by independent analysts at The Radicati Group. Google Apps is the clear leader Radicati's "Top Player" quadrant, with both the largest market share and the best score when it…
The first big storm of this winter got us thinking about how we deal with unexpected events, whether that's extreme weather preventing our staff getting into work or a more local emergency like a flood, fire or burglary at our offices. Business continuity isn't the first reason (or even the fifth!) why we and our customers choose to use Google…
At the start of the year, we predicted that 2013 would see IT departments consider putting Android, iOS and Chrome devices into the mix rather than automatically refreshing with the latest generation of Windows-based systems. It turns out they're not just considering them but purchasing them – in rapidly increasing numbers. Research from NPD Group shows that, by August, Chromebooks…
We are pleased to announce that Ancoris has joined Google's reseller program for their "Geo" products including Google Maps for Business API, Google Maps Engine and Google Maps Coordinate. This allows us to offer a full range of Google Enterprise offerings to our customer base and provide a responsive service to companies who wish to buy Google Maps for Business…
We are pleased to announce that the Appogee products division of Ancoris has been shortlisted for an award as E-learning Development Company of the Year. The independent judging panel, co-ordinated by the eLearning Network, have whittled down more than 200 entries to produce an impressive shortlist that really showcases the amazing range that e-learning now covers. Shortlist for e-Learning Awards…
Wednesday, 04 September 2013 00:00

Ancoris is finalist for UK IT Awards

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After our success in the CRN Channel Awards, we are truly delighted to announce that we are also in the list of finalists for the UK IT Awards in two categories: Cloud Provider of the Year and Small Supplier or VAR of the Year Click here to view the shortlist The UK IT Industry Awards from Computing and BCS are…
We are proud to announce that we have been shortlisted for CRN Channel Awards in two categories: Specialist Reseller of the Year and Mid-Market Reseller of the Year. View the 2013 Shortlist here Now in their 20th year, the awards continue to represent the pinnacle of achievement in the UK market, rewarding outstanding performance in the IT channel. With refreshed…
Earlier this month, we spent a day at the 5th Big Data Insight Group Forum, which was sponsored by Google in partnership with Ancoris. The event provided an opportunity to share experiences and insights with colleagues from more than 150 organisations. What most struck us from the event is just how much data is now available that could inform our…
Ancoris is now a provider of Customer Success Services (CSS) for Google Apps, approved by Google. As a Google Apps Premier Reseller, Ancoris has met the criteria, specified by Google, for delivering a consistently high standard of support and advisory services for Google Apps. Ancoris now offers Google Enterprise’s high-calibre services, which includes enhanced 7 x 24 technical support, proactive…
One of the hot topics for 2013 is "Big Data": mining huge data sets – and unstructured data such as comments on social media sites like Twitter – to gain business insight. Large retailers have been employing Big Data techniques for years, in applications such as basket analysis. However, gaining that kind of insight used to involve a significant investment…