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The ACCENT Learning Hub

The IT Support Learning Hub

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

Marty Kaufman

Marty Kaufman is Founder and President of Accent Computer Solutions, Inc., a Southern California-based innovator in IT thinking. He got his start in the world of Big Data as Manager of Information Systems for General Dynamics. He earned his B.S. degree in Computer Information Systems from California Polytechnic University, Pomona in 1985 and started Accent Computer Solutions as a consulting firm in 1987. He has spent his entire career researching and implementing Information Technology strategies and processes to help his clients reduce the cost and risk of IT.

Blog Feature

Executive Insights | Tightening IT Security

Cyber Risk is Business Risk

By: Marty Kaufman
August 30th, 2018

Just recently, I learned about a local business that experienced a cyber attack. All of the employees were sent home to work from their personal computers because the owner was afraid that using their business systems would make matters worse. This business owner called and asked me to come over to talk with him about the situation. As I sat in his conference room and discussed what was going on, he was actually being attacked while I was there! Bank accounts and financial information were being compromised real time.

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Executive Insights | Leadership

What IT Needs Most in This Super Complex Technological World: Communication

By: Marty Kaufman
July 31st, 2018

Threats from malware, complicated projects, and out-of-date equipment are front and center in executive conversations with Information Technology (IT) support firms right now. This past month, demand for my consulting time has been at an all-time high. As I advise business leaders and managers who are trying to get better results from IT, the first part of the discussion usually consists of defining exactly what IT is.

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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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Executive Insights

Protect Your Investment & Stay Productive With Proactive Network Management

By: Marty Kaufman
June 28th, 2018

I bet most of you don’t wake up in the middle of the night sweating about Internet Bandwidth – my team and I do. Over the course of the last few years, the Internet and connectivity have become one of the most important topics of business conversations. Why, you ask? Today, almost every organization uses the Internet and its associated bandwidth for mission-critical applications. Companies are using cloud based-applications ranging environmental control systems (thermostats) and billing software, to ERPs and Shop Floor Control systems. Software manufacturers and the users of these systems (you and your employees) have become completely dependent on Internet availability. We expect it from jacks on the wall and from Wi-Fi systems, and we’re lost without it. Even a little blip in business Internet performance today interrupts voice calls, manufacturing production, billing, warehouse management, distribution systems, medical office patient processing, etc.

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Blog Feature

Executive Insights | Tightening IT Security

IT Security and GDPR: What to Do Next

By: Marty Kaufman
May 31st, 2018

This month has been a security and compliance whirlwind! The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect on May 25, 2018. I’m sure you’ve received a LOT of emails from companies notifying you that they’ve updated their privacy policies. This is just one step companies are taking to become GDPR compliant. We’ve been getting a lot of questions about GDPR and compliance, so here’s a brief overview about what’s going on, and what you may need to do.

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Executive Insights

How Do You Know What You Don’t Know?

By: Marty Kaufman
April 30th, 2018

Congratulations, we’ve made it through the first quarter of 2018! Usually, the first few months of the year are spent working out the kinks in your strategic plan and fumbling around with planning and KPI software (…or is that just me?). I hope you are getting your stride and hitting your 2018 milestones.  Now’s the time when business owners and executives typically start thinking hard about using technology as a competitive advantage. Tax season is behind us, and many companies have begun focusing on Information Technology (IT) related objectives. The problem is, many people have very little idea about how to approach the subject of IT problems and opportunities.

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Executive Insights

A Month of Security and Compliance Inquiries

By: Marty Kaufman
March 30th, 2018

March has been all about IT security and compliance inquiries – and it’s a good thing. This month alone, there’s been over 2 million documented cases of data breaches and cyber attacks – and that’s just the ones that have been reported! It seems that cyber criminals have shifted their focus to ransomware and data breaches. Why? Well, the financial opportunity for hackers is enormous. There’s a general lack of security precautions being implemented and enforced throughout companies, leaving a ton of personal information and corporate data vulnerable to attacks.

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Executive Insights

How IT Helps Hit Strategic Business Goals

By: Marty Kaufman
February 28th, 2018

With the holidays firmly behind us, 2018 is in full swing. February always seems to be the time when activity in the business world increases dramatically. We’re seeing business owners and managers focusing on their strategic objectives. Their first order of business: getting rid of any obstacle in their way. In some cases, this obstacle is information technology (IT).

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Executive Insights

How Do We Get to Strategic IT?

By: Marty Kaufman
January 30th, 2018

If you have ever used a computer, laptop, tablet, or printer, you have most certainly been frustrated by some sort of nagging issue. It can be as simple as your printer not printing or as important as not being able to process payroll!

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Executive Insights

2018 Planning for Opportunity

By: Marty Kaufman
December 27th, 2017

The holiday season is wrapping up quickly and I hope yours was full of joy. The last week of the year is a great time to focus on finishing up your business plan for 2018. For us, that means reviewing our 2018 plan one more time to make sure we didn’t miss anything. After further review, we made a few more tweaks, and then everyone agreed that we’re ready to go!

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Executive Insights

'Tis the Season for Getting ‘Unstuck’

By: Marty Kaufman
November 30th, 2017

November is my favorite month of the year. And why wouldn’t it be?  The craziness of the holiday season hasn’t 100% kicked in, we spend time being very thankful, and football is in full swing! ‘Tis also the season for companies to begin their strategic planning for 2018. For me, I enjoy the activity, excitement, and optimism that comes along with planning for a new year. During this season, I also spend a lot of time with business owners and managers. Our goal is to figure out what they can do to improve the performance of Information Technology (IT) in their business.  These conversations almost always stem from three separate situations:

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