Posts Tagged ‘Businesses’

Businesses, public pan WiFi monitoring

July 28th, 2011

A regulation that requires bars, restaurants, hotels and bookstores to install expensive Web-monitoring software has sparked controversy among business owners and the public.
The software, which is designed to supervise illegal activities by passing the identities of customers using free wireless services to public security departments, will cost business owners 20,000 yuan ($3,100). Those who refuse to pay and offer unfettered Internet access may face a 15,000-yuan fine.
Ye Jia, a cafe owner in Wudaoying Hutong, Dongcheng district, told China Daily that her brother was asked to install the software during a meeting at the district’s public security bureau on July 22.
“All small businesses with WiFi in our area attended that meeting,” she said. “But I won’t use the software, because I can’t afford the costly fees.
“If the restriction on the wireless service is put into effect, my cafe will be affected and I won’t be able to keep offering this service.”
Many business owners in the city who had not heard about the new regulation expressed disapproval when they were told how much the installation would cost.
“It’s a requirement of the public security organs. Why should we pay the fees?” said Yang Xiaowen, manager of UBC Coffee in Chaoyang district.
A 40-year-old customer surnamed Guan using the WiFi in a Sculpting in Time cafe in Chaoyang district said she thought the regulation violated her privacy.
“I don’t want to be watched. It will make me uncomfortable,” said Guan, who works for a consulting company.
Another customer named Zhou Li, 29, an administrative employee, said she did not care about the regulation and will do private online work at home instead of in public.
Yi Shenghua, a Beijing-based lawyer at Ying Ke Law Firm, said he did not support the regulation, which is similar to one that applies to Internet bars. He said business owners should not have to pay for the monitoring software.
The Beijing municipal public security bureau had not responded to these criticisms by Wednesday.
“I have known about it and we are studying the issue at present,” said Zi Xiangdong, spokesman for the bureau, who declined to make any further comment.
A report in Beijing News said the public security department revealed that the regulation has been introduced in the capital and will be applied across the country.
Cafe owners contacted by China Daily reporters in Shanghai, and in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, said they had been notified of the new measure.
In addition, the developer of the program, Shanghai Rain-Soft Software, did not comment. A receptionist at the company said: “Our manager has been away on a business trip and won’t be back until August, so there is no one available to explain the software.”


Businesses waste more than £400 on software ‘per PC’

April 18th, 2011

Businesses waste an average £432 on software per PC, according to a new software efficiency report.

The majority, 30 percent, of organisations estimated that the value of unused software on a typical PC was between £250 and £499, while one percent believed that the value was at least £1,000. Six percent of organisations did not have any idea of how much was being wasted.

The presence of unused software on employee PCs can be due to a number of reasons, but can often be a result of poor licence management.

For example, 16 percent of respondents did not record software licences in their organisation at all, while of the ones that did, 47 percent use spreadsheets, and six percent still used a paper-based filing system.

However, the management of licences can be made even more complex due to bundled licence and maintenance deals, multiple versions of software, and virtualisation.

A total 251 UK professionals responsible for managing software licences, in companies with more than 500 employees, were surveyed online for The Software Efficiency Report 2011. The report by researchers Opinion Matters was commissioned by PC power management software provider 1E, The Federation Against Software Theft and Investors in Software (FAST IiS) and the International Association of Information Technology Asset Managers (IAITAM).

Geoff Collins, product manager at 1E, said that one of the most surprising findings of the research was that so few organisations recovered costs by reclaiming money from unused licences.

“It’s such an easy thing to achieve if they have got the right tools,” he said. “It’s very difficult to step back and get a 30,000ft view of what your estate looks like. People seem to go out and buy more [licences] instead of reallocating them.”

A quarter of firms said they had not ever considered reclaiming unused software licences, and only eight percent of businesses regularly reclaimed unused software licences.

Although 52 percent said they had considered actively uninstalling and redeploying licences, they blamed risk, user objection and a lack of tools for not being able to do so.

“It’s such an easy thing to achieve if they have got the right tools,” Collins said. “It’s very difficult to step back and get a 30,000ft view of what your estate looks like. People seem to go out and buy more [licences] instead of reallocating them.”

Collins said that this was a significant problem among IT asset managers, under pressure from software vendor audits.

“Many think their job is about licence compliance and they just go out and buy more.”

Meanwhile, a massive 92 percent of respondents admitted to having shelfware – bought software that is left to sit on the shelf. The report estimates that this alone costs each organisation £107 per PC a year in purchase and maintenance costs.

The report said that the challenge with shelfware is that it can be hard to find, as traditional systems management tools only detect installed software.

“IT management teams need to learn how to hunt down and eliminate shelfware, in order to free up budget for more important activities,” according to the report.


Businesses fined £2.2m in 2010 for using unlicensed software

March 30th, 2011

The cost to UK businesses of using unlicensed software throughout 2010 totalled £2.2m in fines, according to the Business Software Alliance (BSA).

The largest settlement in the UK in 2010 was £40,000. And the total was more than double the cost to businesses in 2009.

Other big payouts came from design company Native Design, which settled an unlicensed software dispute last year for £24,000, and Glasgow-based Barrhead Travel, which paid out over £10,000.

The BSA also suggests that the £2.2m figure only represents the amount paid out as a direct result of legal action, and actually the real cost is a lot higher.

It said that the costs cited exclude legal expenses, disruption to business operations, the impact on cash flow when having to make unplanned software purchases, damage to reputation and the repercussions of operational downtime.

“Informant reports come through frequently and businesses need to be aware that it is easy for employees to blow the whistle on unlicensed software use,” said Julian Swan, director, compliance marketing EMEA, BSA.

“Companies that cut corners to save costs when it comes to renewing software licences are breaking the law – this is an ideal excuse for frustrated employees to secure some payback on management that thinks it can get more with less.”

The BSA insists that these costs have a wider impact on the economy.

Research carried out in 2010 by analysts IDC for BSA found that by reducing the 27 per cent software piracy rate in the UK to 10 per cent over four years, 13,011 high tech jobs would be generated. By 2013, the move would also see new economic activity generate £5.4bn, with HMRC able to claim £1.5bn in new taxes over the same period.

“This is money that businesses can ill-afford to lose, especially during an economic downturn,” said Michala Wardell, chair, BSA UK committee.

“Many businesses need to understand that software is a valuable asset and a key driver of growth for UK plc. Companies that don’t comply can expect to face stiff financial penalties as a consequence.”


Businesses pay £6.5m software piracy bill

September 2nd, 2010

Businesses are paying millions in settlement and licensing costs for copyright infringements, according to anti-software piracy organisation, the Business Software Alliance (BSA).

Action against companies in Europe, Middle East and Africa cost £6.5m in the first half of 2010, according to the BSA’s latest report.

This represents an increase of more than £500,000 compared with the same period in 2009.

More than £2.5m was paid out in settlement fees and a further £4m was used to purchase business-critical software to ensure companies were legally compliant.

In the UK alone, the total cost to businesses reached over £2m, more than double the amount paid out by UK businesses in the whole of 2009.

“The BSA conducted more than 1,000 legal actions in the first half of this year in EMEA,” said Sarah Coombes, EMEA senior director for legal affairs at the BSA.

“One company’s use of unlicensed software was so extensive that a settlement of nearly £200,000 was agreed,” she said.

In the current economic climate, Coombes said businesses should not run the risk of flouting copyright laws and opening themselves up to potential legal and financial sanctions.

Despite campaigns by the BSA to educate businesses on software licensing, the figures show there is still a way to go in changing the attitude of some companies, said Julian Swan, EMEA director of compliance marketing at the BSA.

“We hope that these figures act as a reminder to businesses that if they are caught using unlicensed software, the BSA will take action,.


Software allows businesses to process credit card sales on mobile phones

August 8th, 2010

Sage North America, a business software company, recently introduced Sage Payment Boss, which enables small businesses to accept credit card payments anywhere they can use their mobile phone to connect to a 3G network.

All the program requires is a merchant account provider. The program can also process and verify all credit card payments, and even sends out an electronic receipt when a sale is completed.

The program can also be used in conjunction with Sage’s Billing Boss system, which not only ensures that businesses are paid immediately for their services, but also tracks and manages all incoming payments in real time, monitors sales activity and reconciles all credit card transactions with merchant accounts.

Used together, these programs effectively eliminate paperwork for small businesses.

Several major cell phone carriers, like Verizon and AT&T, recently announced their plan to implement a mobile payment system that would let consumers use their smartphones in lieu of their credit card.


Why manufacturing businesses need erp manufacturing software such as sage mas 90 and sage mas 200

August 7th, 2010

Present day organizations are relying and emphasizing on the fact that using multiple computer software’s for storing their data, information records, and documents helps them in the long run.

The norm in the industry is that implementation of some software’s are an efficient and easier way of keeping track of daily and constant changes evolving dynamically around businesses.

To prioritize this, few leading companies are utilizing software’s centering on recruitment and staffing, which has helped them in making tactical and strategical business decisions at ease.

An applicant tracking software is an online portal service that keeps tab of the various recruitment happenings like new job postings, candidate availability, references, application status etc.

These form an integral component in the hiring procedures in an organization.

Some people in the Industry also call the ATS software a Comprehensive Talent Management System, as it is used by people from both employers as well as potential employees for multiple purposes.

But what makes the applicant tracking software so unique is the fact that it is easily customizable and most importantly the user can familiarize themselves with the application very quickly.

ATS being a fully automated software helps businesses to generate, track and manage records and files of the hiring process completely.

Being system generated they are even able to keep track of minute details which has time and again proved for organizations using the ATS as a highly cost efficient and effective hiring process software.

According to recruiting companies, this software is a personalized solution for keeping all their hiring records in one place.

A lot of companies nowadays recruit online and online recruiting software’s are the perfect solution for their staffing needs.

Businesses are aware of the fact that having an ATS is similar to having free additional help 24/7/365. This not only helps in streamlining your work but also in channelizing your key result metrics into quantifiable outputs.

The applicant tracking system helps in reducing the stress of running the business and helps to grow your business into a successful corporation by easing the process of hiring employees who match the right job profile.

With the ATS, a dreaded mass recruitment drive of what seems like scrutinizing thousands of resumes and deciding upon them, hardly now takes matter of minutes.

This is the success rate at which a business can easily sort through their applications and quickly choose those who best qualify for the position and quickly move onto the hiring process which will ensure in bringing new employees into the business quickly and efficiently.


Businesses advised to get to grips with SaaS and the cloud

July 22nd, 2010

Organizations have been advised to familiarize themselves with software as a service (SaaS) and cloud computing technology – just in case uptake of the software becomes obligatory.

The Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM) Europe has warned that companies may find that decisions relating to adopting the service could be thrust upon them.

“Some of these decisions about what you’re going to use will not be made for technical reasons, it will be mandated,” Doug Miles, the body’s UK managing director, explained.

Because of this, the expert recommends that businesses look at and learn about both of the offerings.

However, he added that he thinks SaaS is more tangible than cloud computing because providers and servers tend to be more accessible.

Meanwhile, a recent survey conducted by Iron Mountain found that over half of its respondents were already using SaaS technology for mission-critical applications.

The research also suggested that uptake of the service was set to become even more popular, with 65 per cent of those questioned planning to add new SaaS services in the next 12 to 18 months.


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