Happy New Year and Some work smarter tips for 2011

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Saving a few $. Ok, I’ll admit it, my finances are a little shaky, hell, at least I’m not alone! Times are tough and many of us are working twice as hard for less return compared to this time a year ago. But that doesn’t have to spell disaster, it just means that we need to work not only harder but smarter. I’ve adopted a few tricks and tools that enable me to do just that; work a little smarter and save me a few dollars at the same time.

Some work smarter tips for 2011:

Embrace Google Apps… Don’t have access to Microsoft Office?? No worries… as a Google account holder all you really need is Google Docs. Other free apps that you can leverage include Google Voice, Google Calling, and Google analytics… all free to use and very powerful for your business. Starting a blog… just grab yourseelf a blog from Google’s Blogger service (blogger.com)

Ditch the land line – seriously, do you need a land line?? I’m totally land line-free now that I use Skype (PC and mobile) and Google’s free Calling service.

Upgrade your technology – Indeed it takes money to make money and if you depend on computer hardware in your work make sure your home PC (or MAC) are not more than 3 years old. PCs are dirt cheap and so are the peripherals.  Are you still lugging around that 6 year old, 12 lb laptop? If so its time to pass it on to your kid or donate it to someone who can use it. Forget that it cost you $1200 because you can replace it with a slim, 3lb netbook for under $400. Most important, invest in an external storage device. For under $100 you can have a small, external hard-drive, ideal for backing up all your data (priceless) and easily portable so you can bring it with you when you travel.

Embrace open source software and web services – Thinking about purchasing a new Office Suite? Forget about it, why not just use Google Docs or an open source office suite solution? Need a blog or CMS for your website? Don’t spend loads of cash on software that you don’t need. For a powerful CMS invest in an open source solution like Joomla or for your blog , use Blogger (Google) or even better, WordPress, use free web hosting for personal blogs or invest a few $$ in a hosted WordPress solution – make sure you spend a few $$ a grab a custom domain name for the measly $8 per year that it will cost you.

Backup, Backup ,Backup- whatever you do, make sure you back up all of your data (docs, email, websites, photos, videos). It takes no time to burn a DVD (you do have a CD or DVD burner right??)  or simply store your data on a USB drive or even better, an external hard-drive. If none of these solutions sound doable to you there’s always hosted (cloud) storage available for very little cost. Be sure to create a Backup plan and schedule as well as plan for a recovery solution.

Read the full post at http://blog.gisuser.com/?p=8406

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