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The ACCENT Learning Hub

The IT Support Education Center

The most educational business technology blog for Southern California executives, featuring insider tips, articles, and videos on how to get the best IT results.

Courtney Casey

In an industry dominated by men, Courtney Casey, Director of Marketing for Accent Computer Solutions, Inc., is making her mark on the world of information technology. Courtney has been immersed in the IT field most of her life and has been molded into the tech savvy expert she is today. She began working for Accent while earning her Bachelor's degree from California State University, Long Beach. Known in the Inland Empire as the "Tech Girl," Courtney is a regular columnist for the region's newspaper of record, The Press-Enterprise. Her columns address topical news trends, new technology products, and offer advice on how to embrace technology or avoid common IT pitfalls.

Blog Feature

Team Member Spotlight

Stalled Career Restarted at Accent – A Spotlight on Amber Mena

By: Courtney Casey
September 18th, 2020

For Amber Mena, the challenge to better herself and learn new things has been a driving force throughout her life. After stalling in a job that didn’t lead anywhere, she found her way to Accent Computer Solutions where she found the perfect environment to ask questions, learn from others’ experiences, and grow in a way that inspires her curiosity – while also being part of a team that trusts her to get the job done. “I love growing, learning, and doing new things,” Amber said. “When I arrived at Accent, I was bombarded with knowledge all around me, and it was everything I had hoped for.”

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Proactive Monitoring | Network Security

3 Reasons Why Hardware Updates Support Our Shared Goal of Predictable Technology

By: Courtney Casey
September 8th, 2020

Do you know if you and your IT support provider share the same goals? Here’s the test. If they make more money when your technology DOESN’T work, then you don’t share the same goals. If you want technology to work for your business, then predictable technology should be at the top of the list of your shared goals . Predictable technology means you can count on IT to work. It’s foundational to a proactive approach to IT because if your technology isn’t predictable, you can’t use IT to improve your business and meet other goals -- like improving customer service, decreasing costs, and increasing revenue.

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Learn how to develop an IT strategy book chapter

Do IT Right: It's Not About The Computers

Optimize your business's IT function, understand proper - and cost effective - IT staffing, and learn from the mistakes others have made.

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Cyber Security | Network Security

Replacing Your WatchGuard XTM Firewall: How You Benefit When We Standardize

By: Courtney Casey
August 31st, 2020

WatchGuard XTM firewalls are being phased out and if you have one, you’re going to have to replace yours soon. Evaluating your options can be overwhelming with the number of manufacturers and models of firewalls that are available. How do you know which one will best fit your needs?

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Technology Planning | Cyber Security

Acceptable Use Policy: What Is It, What's Included and Why Is It Important for Businesses?

By: Courtney Casey
August 26th, 2020

Technology is a vital aspect of society and involved in nearly every type of industry and business today. It's hard for most people to go for an hour, let alone a day, without looking at their cellphones. Although the digital explosion has been great for connecting anytime, anywhere, there are inherent security risks involved with technology.

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Managed Security Services

The Best Reason to Upgrade Your WatchGuard XTM Firewall: Get More Built-In Security Tools

By: Courtney Casey
August 24th, 2020

If you have any of the XTM series of firewalls manufactured by WatchGuard, plan to replace them as all XTM models are in the process of being phased out. End of life for this hardware means that soon there won’t be any support or replacement parts from the manufacturer, and software updates will stop. Using old technology isn’t a great idea for many reasons. When equipment goes out of support, the manufacturer won’t be able to help or provide spare parts if something breaks.

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Blog Feature

Team Member Spotlight

A Heart for Helping – A Spotlight on Melinda Pagani

By: Courtney Casey
August 21st, 2020

Melinda Pagani lists two things as the favorite parts of her job. One is when she can solve a problem for a client, and the other is when she can relay appreciation back to her team. In her role as Client Success Manager at Accent, Melinda is the person who has the most contact with clients, so when she hears good news about how the team performed, she’s not going to keep it to herself.

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Blog Feature

Tech Girl

How to Pick a New Business Phone System

By: Courtney Casey
August 11th, 2020

When you sent your employees home to work because of COVID-19, you probably found out just how flexible or inflexible your phone system could be. The experience either helped you to keep communications going or caused frustration for employees and customers alike. Having a reliable, stable phone system can provide a competitive advantage and can be critical to your business’ operations. Because modern phone systems can be integrated into so many other technology tools that your people are using, phones aren’t just what you use to talk to somebody. If fact, they can actually enable the kind of communications that help people work together.

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Toshiba Phone System End-of-Life: What Are Your Options Now?

By: Courtney Casey
August 10th, 2020

Toshiba phone systems are on an end-of-life path that ends on October 31st, 2021 when support comes to a complete halt. You may be thinking, "2021 is still a ways off - nothing to worry about yet." But there's another deadline looming in 2020 that will impact how you’ll be able to use your phone system during that last year of support, and this involves licensing.

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Tech Tips & Trends | Microsoft 365

Best Email Signature Management Options for Microsoft Office 365

By: Courtney Casey
August 7th, 2020

Business owners know how important it is to portray a consistent and professional image. Part of that image includes your email signature. Email signatures are a great opportunity to brand every message you send when communicating with clients, prospects, and vendors. A cohesive email signature leaves an impression and helps develop brand recognition and trust in the long run.

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Tech Tips & Trends | Remote Work

Video Conferencing Options: Zoom vs. Microsoft Teams vs. GoToMeeting

By: Courtney Casey
July 28th, 2020

Video conferencing and virtual collaboration are a major part of the business world today. Many companies are asking some (if not all) of their employees to work from home, causing the demand for teleconferencing to skyrocket. With so many video conferencing tools to choose from -- how do you know which one is right for your business? In this article, we'll compare the three most popular business video conferencing platforms (Zoom, Teams, and GoToMeeting) in four key areas -- functionality, integration, cost, and security. This will help give you a clear picture of which video conferencing option is best for your specific needs.

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