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CTN Solutions has been serving the greater Philadelphia area since 1997, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

The Cloud Continues Massive Growth

The Cloud Continues Massive Growth

Cloud computing has been one of the most utilized tools for business in 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has made it crucial for businesses to give remote access to tools and one effective way to make that happen was to look to the cloud. This has expanded an already booming market and presents businesses of all sizes with the opportunity to get the computing they need without huge upfront costs. Today, we’ll take a look at the cloud computing market and how hosted computing solutions can improve your business. 

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What Exactly is Software-as-a-Service?

What Exactly is Software-as-a-Service?

Businesses have many problems they need to solve. With technology, the process typically starts with identifying a problem, researching solutions, and finding one that will successfully work to solve the problem. Traditionally, when dealing with technology, a company would procure the hardware and hire technicians to implement the solution and deploy the services needed. If they had to borrow money to do it, they would because the profits would presumably be more than the payments even with banks tacking on interest. 

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A Few Ways Small Businesses Can Use the Cloud

A Few Ways Small Businesses Can Use the Cloud

Cloud computing has its cost and time saving benefits, but when your business is small, it could just be looked at as an unnecessary addition to your computing infrastructure. Today, we will go through a few ways that even the smallest of businesses can utilize cloud computing. 

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Cloud Costs Could Undermine Your Efforts

Cloud Costs Could Undermine Your Efforts

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues around us, many businesses have found themselves seriously reconsidering their business infrastructure, pondering the switch from onsite hardware to cloud-based options. While these hosted options can offer businesses relief from a costly hardware refresh, it is important to acknowledge that cloud computing may not be a one-size-fits-all panacea. Let’s take a closer look.

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Businesses are Dashing to the Cloud. Is Yours?

Businesses are Dashing to the Cloud. Is Yours?

This is a strange time for everyone. For business owners, it’s filled with uncertainty as many businesses have had to shut down in the face of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Others were forced into embracing remote operations. For these companies, their cloud platforms are turning out to be major benefits. Today, we’ll explain why.

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Is the Hybrid Cloud Something You Should Consider?

Is the Hybrid Cloud Something You Should Consider?

Cloud solutions are extremely popular among modern businesses, whether they rely on public cloud resources or maintain their own in-house private cloud. Some businesses, however, elect to take the middle ground and use a “hybrid” cloud solution. Let’s take a few moments to determine if your business could benefit from this approach.

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Don’t Migrate to the Cloud Unless You Consider This

Don’t Migrate to the Cloud Unless You Consider This

We hear a lot about the benefits of moving your business to the cloud. It can reduce that big expense on new infrastructure and the ongoing management costs. The cloud can increase the effectiveness of your IT budget. It can add functionality and increase user satisfaction. 

Businesses are rapidly moving all or portions of their IT to the cloud, and for a lot of good reasons, but before you do, it is important to remember the following:

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How Cloud Services and Pizzerias Offer Similar Benefits

How Cloud Services and Pizzerias Offer Similar Benefits

When you look at the cloud service business model, it can be easy to wonder how it is so beneficial to businesses - or really, how it fiscally can be. After all, dollars to donuts, the monthly service charges most likely add up to less than a business would spend for another, comparable service. To understand how the cloud does this, it may help to look at something that often occurs in the office.

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Utility Computing in the Cloud

Utility Computing in the Cloud

There is no denying that the cloud has exploded into the fastest growing business computing method, and for good reason. The cloud has a plethora of options that are designed to meet the needs of the modern business. Today, we examine how your business can leverage the inexhaustible supply of cloud options. 

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Four Ways Cloud Storage Can Benefit Your Business

Four Ways Cloud Storage Can Benefit Your Business

Cloud solutions have proven their value in many different business applications. A major one is the ability to use a cloud service as a storage solution. By doing so, a business can enjoy a few additional advantages as compared to one that relies on more traditional storage solutions.

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Why a Hybrid Cloud is Right for Your Business

Why a Hybrid Cloud is Right for Your Business

The cloud can bring numerous benefits to a business. Public cloud offerings can reduce technology costs, provide scalability and flexibility to a business’s computing infrastructure, promote collaboration, protect your business from data loss, and much, much more. What it cannot do, however, is guarantee the control some organizations wish to have over their technology infrastructure. Some businesses prioritize that control, while others are bound by industry and government-induced regulations. For those businesses, there is the hybrid cloud.

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Taking a Look at Cloud Growth

Taking a Look at Cloud Growth

In today’s modern business world, you’d be hard-pressed to find an organization that doesn’t utilize the cloud to at least some extent. Let’s take a dive into how businesses use the cloud to be more sustainable and efficient.

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With So Many Cloud Options Picking the Best One Can Be Dizzying

With So Many Cloud Options Picking the Best One Can Be Dizzying

Technology plays an integral part in just about all modern businesses in some way, shape or form. Without a place to purchase devices, however, no one can reap the benefits of them. Some businesses are vendors that provide organizations with these devices. In a sense, they act as the middle man between the producer and the consumer, acquiring devices for sale to businesses and users alike. In this way, vendors are critical for every single business.

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Problems Persist in Private Cloud Implementation

Problems Persist in Private Cloud Implementation

Private cloud computing is on the rise, and it’s for a good reason. Data security is a major problem for countless businesses out there. In the wake of growing concerns over privacy and security threats, it has urged organizations to take it more seriously now. Putting together a comprehensive private cloud system has its fair share of challenges, but when done properly, data security problems can be solved as well.

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Cloud-Based Security Is Concerning for Small Businesses

Cloud-Based Security Is Concerning for Small Businesses

The cloud is such an important part of today’s business environment that most organizations use it to some extent, even if it’s just for basic storage needs. However, the cloud needs to be properly maintained, starting with the way you secure your cloud services. Take a moment to ask yourself if your cloud--whether it’s hosted on-site or by a provider--is safe and secure.

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Are Cloud-Based Solutions Right For Your Organization?

Are Cloud-Based Solutions Right For Your Organization?

You’d be hard-pressed to find a business these days that doesn’t use the cloud in some way or another. Before investing in the right cloud solutions, it’s important that your organization considers several factors. Here are three of the most common ones that your business should consider before investing in and implementing a new cloud service.

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Unified Communications Boosts Organizational Collaboration

Unified Communications Boosts Organizational Collaboration

Communication is one of the most important parts of running an organization, and this is especially true for smaller organizations that need to work closely in order to make progress. Today’s collaborative workplace is dependent on people understanding a unified message and working to succeed in that endeavor. To this end, a unified communications strategy can be extremely helpful.


Defining Unified Communications
What kinds of tools do you use on a daily basis to make sure that everyone stays connected and informed? Be sure to include technology solutions like email, telephone calls, mobile apps, and instant messaging. Now imagine all of it together in one singular platform. When you consolidate so many solutions into one, you make the experience easier for everyone involved, including your employees, supervisors, and administration.

Another aspect of unified communications that makes things much easier for your business is the fact that it’s hosted in a flexible cloud-based environment. Since you’re accessing these platforms through the cloud, you don’t have to worry about hosting and maintaining the infrastructure that these solutions are hosted on (as long as you’re outsourcing this, anyway). This also saves you a considerable amount of time and resources during implementation, as well as lowers the barrier for entry due to its ease of use.

How They Are Good for Business
By building a unified communications system you gain multiple benefits. You enhance security by being able to manage all communications--both inside and outside your organization--from one easy-to-manage dashboard. It is great for organizations that depend on department-to-department collaboration. Just think about how much easier it is to collaborate when there are reliable communication solutions at your fingertips. The end result is a much more efficient and valuable situation that you would see with a more traditional system where you utilize multiple solutions to handle your company communications.

If you want to learn more about how unified communications can work for your company, CTN’s consultants can take you through what it entails to build one, and just how much more efficient your operations can be with enhanced communications solutions. Reach out to us at (610) 828-5500 for more.

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Get Rid of Those Filing Cabinets with Document Management

Get Rid of Those Filing Cabinets with Document Management

The file cabinet. It may be a staple of the office, but can be a pain in the neck. Every file needs to be printed and collated only to be filed in a dingy file cabinet with the off chance that it will ever be needed again. For businesses with lots of paper, a document management system can go a long way toward modernizing your organization, and providing an access-controlled database where you can find any file in seconds.

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Can Hosted VoIP Be a Game Changer for Your Business?

Can Hosted VoIP Be a Game Changer for Your Business?

Many business transactions may be moving away from the telephone, but it is still a must-have for any business. Not everyone is Internet-savvy after all. Nowadays, there are plenty of telephone options out there, but only one carries no upfront hardware costs or a exorbitant fee structure: Hosted VoIP. Today, we will take a look at the benefits of cloud hosted VoIP, and how to get one working for your business today.


What is Cloud-Hosted VoIP?
Before we go into what cloud-hosted VoIP is, you have to understand what VoIP is. With Internet bandwidth increasing very quickly, there are now phone systems that work over an Internet connection rather through the traditional telephone infrastructure. As a result, Internet-based phone systems are growing in popularity. Called Voice over Internet Protocol, companies who were looking to take full control over their communications costs, started to purchase expensive PBX technology, hosting it in their place of business, and paying a VoIP provider per user. Sure it was expensive to start up, but once a company owned the hardware, costs normalized and the phone system was theirs to do with as they please.

Cloud-hosted VoIP moves the PBX platform from your server room to the cloud, removing the upfront hardware and maintenance costs that typically keep businesses from investing in their own telephone solution. With a cloud-hosted VoIP solution, you and your staff gain anytime-anywhere access to a feature-rich and reliable telephone system without the cost, headaches, and hassle that traditional telephone systems are often associated with.

Cloud-Hosted VoIP Features
While the main advantages to integrating a cloud-hosted VoIP system come from the transfer and reduction of cost, there are other benefits. Being able to quickly, and affordably, scale to your organization’s needs, provides you the opportunity to pay only what you need to pay, and not get locked into a lengthy and expensive long-term contract. If you need a new phone line, you can get one, and it will be reflected in next month’s bill.

Speaking of bills, the Cloud-hosted VoIP solution allows you to budget your communication costs based on your users, not on your whole system. This provides an advantage for project-oriented businesses, as they can easily add a phone when they need one and get rid of it when they don’t.

Another major benefit isn’t one you would typically expect. The security of cloud-hosted VoIP systems is solid. Your VoIP provider is in charge of your system’s hosting and security. As with most data center-based computing platforms, a cloud-hosted PBX server is completely protected with comprehensive disaster recovery protocols as well as ample physical security.

A lot of hosted-cloud VoIP options offer conferencing solutions and the opportunity to unify your organization’s communications platform. This can have several positive benefits including simpler management, cost reduction, and increased efficiency.

With Cloud-hosted VoIP at the center of your business’ communications, you can do more with less. For more information about the VoIP options CTN has, call us today at (610) 828-5500.

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Why The Cloud Should be Approached Responsibly

Why The Cloud Should be Approached Responsibly

It can be argued that your organization isn’t considered “modern” without taking advantage of truly modern technology solutions. This includes the cloud, which provides anytime-anywhere access to important information or products. This type of access--also known as Product as a Service--can help your budget by eliminating large up-front costs in favor of smaller payments more regularly. This might seem ideal for your organization, but we urge you to take a step back and think about the solution before accepting terms of service without looking for extra hidden costs.


A study performed by Research in Action asked 468 CIOs all about their cloud usage and the costs that come with them. The majority agreed that cloud investment was one of the biggest expenses that their organization had, which only seemed to feed into the consideration that any additional expenses can add up in the long run. These CIOs also found that most of their concerns over hidden costs were made up for by the sheer quality, quantity, and reputation of the vendors. Here are some of the issues that were considered during this poll:

  • Putting forth more effort to properly manage vendors, and their corresponding Service Level Agreements (SLAs).
  • Bottlenecking and the impact poor cloud performance could have on brand perception, productivity, and customer support.
  • Spending more to solve complex problems inside cloud environments.

Whether or not these concerns are justified is another issue altogether. While they might be difficult to measure, they are certainly issues that need to be addressed in some way, shape, or form. Many organizations simply don’t have the solutions to adequately determine how much the cloud costs. Many of these companies are simply using dated systems that track their cloud performance, limiting the amount of information that can be tracked.

Costs of Scalability
Some businesses also have trouble scaling their cloud solutions to the point where the organization benefits most. This happens when you’re spending too much on cloud services you don’t need, spending too little and creating an operational deficiency, or managing and administering the cloud in a way that doesn’t create a profit for your organization. You need to understand how much space and and processing will be required of your organization so that it can handle your cloud requests, as well as the flexibility needed to ensure change can be made easily enough. What it amounts to is understanding how your business’s cloud technology handles its bottom line.

Knowing When You’ve Gone Too Far
The cloud is nice for business purposes, but without taking a closer look at your finances, it’s easy to forget how much you actually use the cloud. Look at your personal use of cloud services as an example. If you use Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, and other cloud-based services, while they are all relatively cheap, they can add up and cost you a considerable amount of money.

Depending on your business’s specific needs, you’ll need various cloud services that will vary by industry. How will your organization use the cloud? To find out, reach out to us at (610) 828-5500.

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