Sample Reference Letter for an Employee

Businessman reviewing letter

Why are recommendation letters important?

Before diving into the recommendation letter samples, let’s consider what role recommendation letters play in the job application process. Why do hiring managers ask for letters of recommendation? What purpose do reference letters serve?

Powerfully advocate for the job seeker

Well for one, you can powerfully advocate for a candidate in your letter. By throwing your support behind them, the hiring manager will see that this person has successfully worked with a boss or colleague in the past.

Add personality to a job application

Your letter can also help personalize someone’s application. A hiring manager might read through lots of resumes, but your letter will help the candidate come to life by shedding light on their personality and work style.

Point out past achievements

By discussing specific achievements a candidate has made, you can also help prove the job seeker will make similar accomplishments in the future. They say past behavior points to future behavior, so sharing anecdotes in your letter will help the hiring manager see what the job seeker would be like if they got hired.

Help the job seeker get hired

If you write a generic, vague letter, it might not do much to sway a hiring manager’s opinion. Or it could easily be outshined by someone else’s letter of recommendation, where the writer took the time to get personal and specific.

What to Include in an Employee Reference Letter

Contact Information
Include your contact information and the recipient’s name at the top of the letter for a printed or upload letter. List your contact information in your signature when you’re sending an email.

Salutation
If you are writing a personal letter of reference, include a salutation (Dear Dr. Jennings, Dear Ms. Calavan, etc.). If you are writing a general reference letter, say “To Whom It May Concern” or start with the first paragraph of the letter.

Second Paragraph
Explain why the person you are recommending is qualified, what they can contribute, and why you are providing a reference letter. Be sure to use specific examples to speak to their qualifications.

Third Paragraph
Provide a brief summary of why you are recommending the person. State that you “recommend without reservation” or “strongly recommend” the person or something similar.

Include your phone number and email address in the return address section of a hard copy letter or, if you’re sending an email, list your contact information under your name in the signature.

How to Write a Perfect—and Personalized—Letter of Recommendation (Template and Example Included!)

Of course, it’s flattering to be asked to draft a recommendation letter. But on the other hand, you have to admit that you’re dreading it. Your schedule’s already packed, and this is just one more thing to add to your never-ending to-do list.

SEARCH OPEN JOBS ON THE MUSE! See who’s hiring here, and you can even filter your search by benefits, company size, remote opportunities, and more. Then, sign up for our newsletter and we’ll deliver advice on landing the job right to you.

Add to that, reference letters can be a challenge to whip up—particularly when you want to craft something that’s well-written, personalized, and truly does that person justice to a hiring manager.

But stress no more! Writing a recommendation letter for an employee no longer needs to send you into a tailspin, thanks to our easy-to-follow format and guide. (Need to write someone a LinkedIn recommendation? Get advice for that here.)

First things first, you need to know why you’re being asked to write the recommendation letter. Are you writing a letter of recommendation for academic reasons, a personal character reference, a new job, or something else? If the recommendee hasn’t already provided you information about what they need the letter for, ask them to supply you with the following:

A good recommendation letter includes three main points: your relationship with the person you’re recommending, observations and evaluations of their work, and why they are qualified for the position.

  1. Establish how you worked together and for how long in a sentence or two. Did they report to you? Were they your boss? Did you work in different departments, but collaborated closely on a project?
  2. Evaluate the candidate’s work, focusing on their strengths and applying it to the position they’re seeking. For example, if they’re seeking a management position, showcase their leadership skills. Highlight tangible successes that can be quantified, detailing an increase in sales or how effective they were at managing budgets and/or people.
  3. Describe how they stood out from the rest of their colleagues and use specific examples that support your case, whether it’s taking the initiative on a complex project or spearheading a new company-wide program. Concrete anecdotes will create a lasting impression. If you can, it’s nice to seal the deal with a comparison, such as saying they’re “the most effective salesperson I’ve ever worked with” or “one of the top two employees I’ve ever managed”—as long as that’s true, of course!

Still not sure what to say? Our basic template will show you how to write a letter of recommendation that not only is personalized, but highlights why your colleague should get the position they are seeking.

I thoroughly enjoyed my time working with [Name], and came to know [him/her/them] as a truly valuable asset to our team. [He is/She is/They are] honest, dependable, and incredibly hardworking. Beyond that, [he is/she is/they are] an impressive [soft skill] who is able to [result].

[His/her/their] knowledge of [specific subject] and expertise in [specific subject] was a huge advantage to our entire office. [He/she/they] put this skill set to work in order to [specific achievement].

Along with [his/her/their] undeniable talent, [Name] has always been an absolute joy to work with. [He is/she is/they are] a true team player, and always foster[s] positive discussions and bring[s] the best out of other employees.

Without a doubt, I confidently recommend [Name] to join your team at [Company]. As a dedicated and knowledgeable employee and an all-around great person, I know that [he/she/they] will be a beneficial addition to your organization.

I thoroughly enjoyed my time working with Joanne and came to know her as a truly valuable asset to our team. She is honest, dependable, and incredibly hardworking. Beyond that, she is an impressive problem solver who is able to address complex issues strategically and confidently. Joanne is inspired by challenges and never intimidated by them.

Her knowledge of sales etiquette and expertise in cold calling was a huge advantage to our entire office. Not only did she put this skill set to work, but she also led a series of training sessions on cold calling with the team—increasing our total sales by over 18% in just one quarter. I know that Joanne was a huge piece of our success.

Along with her undeniable talent, Joanne has always been an absolute joy to work with. She is a true team player, and always fosters positive discussions and brings the best out of other employees.

Without a doubt, I confidently recommend Joanne to join your team at The Sales Company. As a dedicated and knowledgeable employee and an all-around great person, I know that she will be a beneficial addition to your organization.

Source:

https://remotebliss.com/recommendation-letter-samples-for-job-and-writing-tips/
https://www.thebalancecareers.com/sample-reference-letter-for-an-employee-2062906
https://www.themuse.com/advice/heres-a-template-to-write-a-perfect-and-personalized-letter-of-recommendation

Actionable Long-Term Goal Examples for College Students

Hard questions to answer and to ask yourself

Why Set Long-Term College Goals?

As a high school student, you might have had your life all planned out. But, now that you are in college, it seems that you’ve lost your resolution. Maybe you aren’t even sure what you want to do anymore.

Consider setting long-term goals. These are goals that you want to happen in the future. For example, you may aspire to get your dream job after graduation. Typically, long-term goals will take you more than 12 months to complete.

The Importance of College Goals

Long-term goals are a great way for you to set your path toward the future. Not only will they put in writing what you are working toward, but they can also keep you motivated. Your goal is right in front of you, and it can keep you going.

In college, it is easy to get into a rut and lose focus of what you are trying to achieve. After a hard class or semester, you can look at your long-term goals to remind you of what is important and what you want when you graduate.

Creating Long-Term College Goals

  • Specific: College goals need to be specific to what you want to accomplish, like graduating cum laude.
  • Measurable: You should be able to track your long-term goals using small stepping stones, like getting all A’s this semester.
  • Achievable: Make goals that are reasonably within reach. For example, if you’ve been struggling to pass your courses, don’t set a goal of graduating with a 4.0 GPA. This might be unrealistic.
  • Relevant: Set goals that are relevant to your college education and future career. For instance, you wouldn’t want to strive toward getting an engineering apprenticeship if you plan to go into medicine.
  • Time-Bound: You need to set a specific end date to look forward to, like getting your master’s degree in two years.

When you’re just starting out in college, it is important to get your goals set. You’ll want to write these out and keep them somewhere you can see them and mark them off as you complete them.

Have a 3.0 GPA Upon Graduation

You can modify this goal as you go along for your academic achievement, but this keeps you working hard in your classes. And, it’s achievable. It is also specific and relevant to being in college. You can also break this into smaller goals to help you reach your desired GPA, like homework and grade goals.

Complete Your Bachelor’s in Four Years

Get Accepted into a Graduate Program

A goal to get into graduate school is a perfect one to break down into smaller actionable steps. You might work the steps into getting high GRE scores and getting references from your professors.

Complete General Education Courses First

Many times, the general education courses might seem boring or dreaded. Students might also want to get right into what they are studying. By setting a goal to get these out of the way first, you aren’t putting them off until the end.

Publish an Academic Paper Before Graduation

Not only will publishing an academic paper look good on your resume, but it is also a great long-term goal to set for yourself. It will show your commitment to your field and really push you in your desired degree program.

Learn a New Language Studying Abroad

It is important to experience other cultures and get outside of your bubble while you are in college. Setting studying abroad as a long-term goal can help you look beyond just academics and think about the connections and networks that might help your future. Plus, a second language is a great skill to list on a resume.

Long Term Goals List with Examples & An Easy Technique to Achieve Them

What is the definition of a long term goal? It is simply an objective that you want to accomplish in the future, but one that will require a significant amount of time and planning. It will most likely take years, not months, to achieve and in many cases reaching the long term goal will also take several smaller steps during the process.

  1. Become a Leader in your Field
  2. Be Your Own Boss
  3. Find a Career You Love
  4. Get a Degree
  5. Buy a House
  6. Save Enough to Retire
  7. Finding a Life Partner
  8. Fund Your Children’s Education
  9. Become a Millionaire
  10. Learn a Foreign Language
  11. Be a Better Parent
  12. Generate Passive Sources of Income
  13. Invest in Real Estate
  14. Become Debt Free
  15. Declutter You Life
  16. Go on Your Ultimate Vacation
  17. Increase Your Level of Fitness
  18. Live Abroad
  19. Learn a New Skill or Trade
  20. Become a Mentor
  21. Research Your Family Tree
  22. Reach and Maintain Your Ideal Body Weight
  23. Learn to Cook Like a Chef
  24. Turn Your Passion Into a Career
  25. Write a Book
  26. Learn How to Sing
  27. Give a TedTalk
  28. Create an Online Course
  29. Start a Club
  30. Create a Podcast
  31. Start a Blog
  32. Master a Video Game
  33. Be Able to Type Without Looking
  34. Have a Credit Score over 800
  35. Invent Something
  36. Compete in a Fitness Competition
  37. Watch all the Oscar Winning Movies
  38. Conquer a Fear
  39. Learn a New Software Program
  40. Get Straight A’s

Inspirational quote board Inspirational Boss Mug I am a woman on a mission goals post it notes

Schedule a no-cost consultation today!

We help students around the world with their college applications and related scholarships. With us you can apply for college admissions and we’ll help you apply for all available scholarships with that.

You May Also Be Interested In:

How to Become Web Developer for Free?

UNESCO Calling Application for International Fund for Cultural Diversity

Colleges in France for International Students

Colleges in Germany for International Students

Best Ways for College Students to Make Money

Christmas Presents for College Students

Best Laptops for High School Students 2020

Best Remote Jobs for College Students

Best International Credit Card for Students

Source:

https://examples.yourdictionary.com/actionable-long-term-goal-examples-for-college-students.html
https://bucketlistjourney.net/long-term-goals-examples/
https://www.freestudy.com/10-long-term-goals-for-college-students/

What Is Blogging?

Google aims to provide its users with the most relevant results for their queries. That means: if you want to rank high in Google and get passive, organic traffic, you need to be the most relevant result for the query.

How to Do YouTube Keyword Research in 3 Easy Steps 2

What Is Blogging?

Man edits photos on his laptop for his blog

Vikki Velasquez is a copy editor, researcher, and writer. Vikki earned her Bachelor of Arts with honors in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies, and minored in Religious Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Blogging refers to writing, photography, and other media that’s self-published online. Blogging started as an opportunity for individuals to write diary-style entries, but it has since been incorporated into websites for many businesses. The hallmarks of blogging include frequent updates, informal language, and opportunities for readers to engage and start a conversation.

What Is a Blog?

A blog or weblog is a part of a website where you publish content (including text, images, and videos to make the articles informational and engaging) in reverse chronological order or newer posts appearing first.

  • Content Frequency: Blogs are regularly updated with new content (even multiple articles a day) while a website is a more static web entity optimized for static content with no new or fresh content.
  • Readership & Engagement: A fresh content uploaded, blogs often create a connection with your readers (& subscription options via newsletters) and attract engagement like social shares & comments from the readers. Websites, on the other hand, to do not encourage conversation and hence no scope of audience engagement.
  • Better SEO: With a blog, you can cover a whole array of topics and have better content (engaging & in-depth) that helps you stay relevant to search engines and hence rank better for the queries you’re targeting. Websites, on the other hand, are static and have thin or sparse content that doesn’t give them an upper hand in ranking on search engines like Google. (We will talk more about SEO and how to rank later in the article)
  • Blogs get more traffic: Another advantage of blogs over websites is that blogs get more visibility on social & search engines. Hence they drive more traffic to you as compared to websites.

This very blogging guide that you’re reading right now is on my blog DigitalGYD.com. It is a perfect example of a blog with regularly updated content, search engine ranking, user engagement etc.

Benefits of Blogging: How Can Blogging Help You?

Step 1: Find a Niche You’re Passionate About

  • Pick a niche you love talking about: Unless you’re passionate enough about a topic you can’t pull it off long enough
  • Choose a niche you have some clarity on: I am not talking about expertise (it can be acquired while you’re growing your blog) but you need to have some clarity about a topic before you start pumping put blog posts about it. Even if you outsource the blog content, you’ll need some knowledge to supervise your writers and see how your blog is performing.
  • Choose a profitable niche: Let’s be honest here. We build blogs to make money or generate leads for profit. Unless you’re just testing out or want to open a hobby blog you need to make sure your blog niche has enough demand amongst the audience. You can do so using a tool like Google Trends (and see how people are searching for a topic and the search trends over time.

Step 2: Choose Your Blogging Platform

Don’t fall for the free blogging platform temptations, they do more harm to you than good. They’re bad for SEO, don’t rank well, lack features and the biggest of them all, you don’t own your content. Your blog can get deleted or compromised and you can’t demand an answer.

Step 3: Choose a Brandable Name of Your Blog

Now, of course, you need to keep all the above things in mind but don’t waste a lot of time in picking up the domain name. Because in the end, the content that you publish will build your brand and not just the domain name.

Step 4: Get Hosting

Step 4: Setup WordPress and Create Your Blog in 10 Minutes

Get feedback on your writing

Every post on our blog is subjected to that scrutiny. We take turns to read each other’s content and offer feedback. We identify areas that could be added/removed, points that could be clarified, sentences that could be worded better, etc.

pasted image 0 69

SEO vs PPC Which Should You Use

Ryan Holiday

If you want exceptional work, you need the input of another person. It could be your spouse or a co-worker. You could ask on social if anyone’s interested in helping. Or you could join communities dedicated to improving drafts.

Update older content

I absolutely love how @ahrefs new Content Explorer tool exposes how much our team works on updating/republishing our old content VS publishing new stuff 😇 💪

Do you know any other blogs that are so committed to keeping their content fresh & awesome? 🙂 pic.twitter.com/SIGbEQpWW9— Tim Soulo (@timsoulo) March 27, 2019

Overview ahrefs com blog how to drive traffic to your websi on Ahrefs

If you have Google Analytics installed, you can find pages with decreasing traffic easily. If not, paste some of your older pages into Ahrefs’ Site Explorer and look at the organic traffic graph in the “Overview” report.

Overview ahrefs com blog duplicate content myth on Ahrefs

Authorship:

https://www.thebalancesmb.com/blogging-what-is-it-1794405
https://www.digitalgyd.com/blogging/
https://ahrefs.com/blog/blogging-tips/

Device management

Despite BYOD being a fairly old concept, many businesses are only just becoming aware of the need for it as their employees start to work from home for the first time. Those that do not have experienced IT teams or large budgets must be able to protect themselves just as much as larger organizations. That is because hackers are equally likely to target a small company as they are a global corporation.

Citrix Endpoint Management

Mobile Device Management (MDM)

The core purpose of MDM is to protect the corporate network by securing and optimizing mobile devices, including laptops, smartphones, tablets, and Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, that connect to enterprise networks. Besides boosting the security of business networks, it also enables employees to use their own devices, rather than corporate-supplied devices, to work more efficiently and be more productive.

MDM software is part of the wider enterprise mobility management (EMM) family, which incorporates enterprise file syncing and sharing, identity and access management (IAM), and mobile application management (MAM). MDM, in the context of controlling PCs, is referred to as unified endpoint management (UEM), which enables organizations to manage all of their enterprise devices from one single location.

The best MDM solutions

1. ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus (FREE TRIAL)

ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus

ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is a free MDM solution that can monitor desktop computers, laptops, smartphones, and tablets. The software supports multiple operating systems including Windows, Mac OS, Chrome OS, iOS, and Android. Through the customizable dashboard you can monitor mobile smart device status, giving you complete visibility over the connected devices your employees bring to work.

The mobile asset management experience offered by ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is very comprehensive. The dashboard also enables you to view additional information on devices including device owners, installed applications, and more. You can schedule regular device scans to keep this information updated.

If there are any problems with a device you can use remote troubleshooting to take control of the device and find the root cause of the issue in real-time. The administrator can use a remote chat to communicate with the end-user of the device. The chat can also be used to issue security commands.

ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager is recommended to enterprises who want a free mobile device management solution. The software’s free for up to 25 devices. ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is available on-premises (for Windows) and in the cloud. For pricing information, you must request a personalized quote from the company directly. You can download the 30-day free trial.

EDITOR’S CHOICE

ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is a complete enterprise mobile management package that comes in both on-premises and cloud-based versions. Include a configuration manager for single or mass device set up and there is also a self-enrollment app that you can use for your device enrollment program. You can also set different policies for business-owned and user-owned devices.

2. Kandji (FREE TRIAL)

Kandji Dashboard Screenshot

The setup for a group of devices is planned in a system called Blueprints. You can create the same Blueprints for different models of mobile devices because the features that you include in one of these plans relate to the applications and access rights, which sit on top of the operating system and aren’t hardware dependent. You don’t have to apply the same Blueprint to all devices, so you can create different plans for different groups of users.

User accounts can be acquired from third-party apps, so you can import the accounts that you have already set up in systems, such as Slack or Okta. This allows you to easily create a single sign-on environment for all of your mobile devices, also coordinating access rights to on-premises Macs.

You set up an account on the Kadji website and then download an agent onto each of the devices that you enroll in the service, so there are both cloud and on-device elements to this system. The starting price for the package is $399 per month for up to 100 devices. You can get a 14-day free trial, which starts with a system demo to assess the Kandji service.

3. VMWare Workspace ONE

VMWare Workspace ONE

VMWare Workspace ONE is a mobile device management tool that can be used to remotely manage devices. With VMWare Workspace One you can configure devices in bulk with the Apple Device Enrollment Program, Know Mobile Enrollment, and Android zero-touch enrolment.

To manage devices, you can configure policies that determine restrictions and assign them to devices. You can distinguish between devices and assign them based on the operating system or ownership type. Ownership types are divided into BYO (Bring Your Own) and corporate-owned so you can tell which devices are company-owned and which are owned by employees.

The platform also enables you to automatically push applications to devices. This means you can purchase applications in bulk and deploy them efficiently without wasting any time. When it comes to adding new devices, users can enter credentials into an onboarding workflow to join the management solution.

VMWare Workspace ONE is suitable for enterprises of all sizes and comes with a range of pricing options, due to its seven editions. Prices start at 800.66 (£1.33) per device and $3.00 (£2.40) per user. You can try the 30-day free trial to manage up to 100 devices.

Choosing the right mobile device management system

The growth of mobile device usage and the steady push towards IoT devices has changed the reality of network monitoring. Monitoring mobile devices is now just as important as managing computers. MDM software solutions make the remote network monitoring process easier by allowing one location to monitor all the devices throughout your network.

Our editor’s choice for this article is ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus because it supports enterprises with an easy-to-navigate user interface and a free package. Other choices like AirWatch Workspace ONE and BlackBerry Unified Endpoint Management are also standout alternatives.

Taking a proactive approach to monitoring mobile devices allows you to eliminate potential entry points to your network and keep your data safe. If you’re not already monitoring mobile devices consider investing in a solution.

Some Key Full Forms and Definitions

The MDM and BYOD space can be quite complicated, with lots of technologies and solutions available for organizations to choose from. We have distilled these into a list of terminologies and definitions below:

  1. Bring your own device (BYOD): BYOD is the concept of employees using their own laptop or mobile device for work. Traditionally, it meant bringing a device to the employee’s workplace or connecting it to a secure corporate network.
  2. Content access: Content access means providing a connection to a back-end repository that employees can use to share or transfer content onto their devices. This includes providing content access to repositories like SharePoint or Documentum, while avoiding roaming download restrictions and enabling logs of which users access and download files.
  3. Enterprise mobility management (EMM): An EMM solution is a collection of policies, processes, technologies, and tools used to manage and maintain employees’ mobile devices. An EMM suite enables organizations to manage mobile device usage and drive the secure use of devices on their networks and systems. For example, MDM software is frequently used in combination with security tools as part of a complete EMM solution.
  4. Mobile application management (MAM): Mobile application management is a process that enables organizations to apply policy control functionalities to applications, which are managed by their EMM console. This is particularly useful if a device does not allow the management capability that an organization requires or if businesses choose not to install MDM profiles onto devices. Mobile application management comes in two forms:
    • Preconfigured application: This is typically an application like a personal information manager for calendars, contacts, or email. It could also be a secure web browser provided by a third party or an EMM provider. A preconfigured application is set up to be managed and secured by the organization’s EMM system.
    • Application extension: This sees policies applied to applications through a software development kit (SDK) or through a wrapping process.
    • Mobile content management: Mobile content management is the process of enabling employees to access content via their mobile devices. This can be achieved through client-side applications, or secure containers, that enable users to store content on a mobile device. The EMM enforces security policies such as authentication, copy and paste restriction, and file sharing to secure the process. The user is then able to access applications like email or content from back-end repositories. Content can also be managed through push-based document delivery, which puts functions in place to control document versions, issue alerts to users when new files are added, or to flag upcoming content expiration dates.
    • Mobile device management (MDM): MDM is software that allows organizations to monitor, manage, and secure their employees’ devices across multiple service providers and operating systems.
    • Remote monitoring and management (RMM): RMM is another piece of software that enables IT service providers to monitor devices, endpoints, and networks remotely. It is also known as remote IT management, whereby a provider manages a fleet of devices across an organization or multiple companies.

    MDM Solutions

    Fortinet endpoint visibility and device protection solutions enable organizations to protect every single employee, regardless of where they are or which network they are connected to. The solutions provide organizations with visibility of every device across the enterprise, then control and protect each. This ensures organizations understand which devices are accessing their networks, and from where, so that they can continuously assess their potential risk and take a more proactive approach to endpoint protection.

    To further protect devices, Fortinet offers real-time endpoint protection, detection, and automated response through FortiEDR, a proactive solution that automatically prevents data breaches in real time without overwhelming organizations’ security teams with false alarms or disrupting the business’s regular operations.

    Fortinet solutions also include pre- and post-infection protection against ransomware attacks, as well as contextual incident response that includes customizable playbooks to help organizations with threat investigations, discovery, and threat hunting.

    These endpoint protection solutions are tightly integrated with the Fortinet Security Fabric, which ensures advanced protection, reduces businesses’ attack surface, ensures dynamic access control, and detects and diffuses threats in real time. They also help organizations automate and orchestrate responses to threats.

    How Does Mobile Device Management Work?

    MDM relies on two separate components. The first is an MDM server management console, which is stored in an organization’s data center and enables administrators to configure, manage, and enforce policies. The second is an MDM agent that receives and implements these policies on users’ devices.

    Why is mobile device management required?

    Mobile device management (MDM) is required because it allows organizations to secure their networks, ensure employees access corporate systems using secure devices, and prevent the risk of data breaches. Cyber criminals are increasingly launching cyberattacks against mobile devices and platforms, which means it is imperative for organizations to have solutions in place to defend themselves. MDM solutions provide protection against attacks aimed at mobile devices by detecting the latest threat strands and preventing them from infiltrating corporate networks.

    What does mobile device management mean?

    MDM means mobile device management, which is a type of software that enables organizations to monitor, manage, and secure their employees’ mobile devices. Businesses can use MDM to secure corporate networks and enable employees to work using their own personal devices. The term is included within the Gartner Magic Quadrant for unified endpoint management (UEM).

    Authorship:

    https://www.fortinet.com/resources/cyberglossary/mobile-device-management
    https://www.comparitech.com/net-admin/mobile-device-management-software/
    https://www.fortinet.com/resources/cyberglossary/mobile-device-management
    Device management

    The configuration process with Miradore is enrollment-based. That is, you don’t configure all the devices, but you invite each user to set up the device with the Miradore client to access your network. Those configurations can include secure email apps, wifi protection, and a VPN service. The VPN is only available for iOS devices.

    BlackBerry UEM

    What is IoT Device Management and How it works?

    IoT is transformative as it empowers businesses to adopt a data-driven approach, which helps them create new business models and also facilities the improvisation of the existing operations and processes. But IoT is all about collecting data from multiple scattered devices, so there are many intricacies that need to be taken care of in the entire process of data collection. This is where IoT device management is needed. It is necessary for managing, monitoring and sustaining the security of the connected devices.

    As the adoption of IoT has increased across different industries, IoT device management has become significantly important. It can be said that IoT device management is an indispensable requirement necessary for the successful deployment of an enterprise’s IoT solution. This article will explain more about IoT device management, how it works, and which all technologies facilitate IoT device management:

    What is IoT Device Management?

    IoT Device Management refers to processes that involve registration, configuration and provisioning, maintenance and monitoring of connected devices. For example, all the significant cloud providers, Azure IoT Hub, AWS IoT or Google Cloud IoT, include services of IoT device management in their offerings.

    You may find billions of smart devices that are already running on the internet worldwide. However, every single device needs to be connected to the web for the first time. Therefore, the first step is to register the device.

    For example, in AWS IoT, each device is called a thing. A thing can be either a physical device or a logical representation of a device. You can either register one device at a time or multiple devices based on your requirements.

    For example, when you have a sensor to track temperature in your time, you can register one sensor at a time. But, if you have to manage a fleet of self-driving cars, you may have to register multiple sensors at a time.

    If you are using the AWS IoT cloud platform, you can create groups in the IoT device registry. Using groups in the registry allows you to aggregate devices to implement a similar command to various devices at once.

    • An IoT policy
      An IoT policy is a document that mentions whether your device can send and receive and from where. Without this policy, your device cannot have access to send and receive data. You will have to link the IoT policy to the device certificate to provision a device in the IoT core.
    • An X.509 Certificate
      It is a digital certificate that leverages the X.509 public key infrastructure to validate that the device within the certificate has the correct key. If you already created an IoT device or thing, you may either have AWS create an X.509 certificate for you or use the existing one.The certificate allows the IoT device registered on the IoT core to communicate with the device and authenticate. You have to copy a certificate to the thing that you created for your device and onto the device itself.AWS uses X.509 certificate as it is ideal for long-term connections and you will only have to copy the certificate onto the device once.
    • Your IoT Device/Sensor
      The above process may work if you have only one or a few devices you require to provision in IoT core. The process is tedious and time-consuming for many devices. However, AWS provides us a way to do it automatically for many devices.

    Step 4: Data Analysis
    The last step is to analyze the data generated from IoT devices by applying computation and action on that information. You need to perform the computation on data using the following steps:

    • Workflow Execution
      Define a workflow for the data collected by IoT devices or sensors. For example, if the temperature under which a specific product needs to be kept gets reduced, users should receive a notification immediately. A defined workflow for an IoT-enabled system can help you take actions efficiently.
    • Maintenance
      It is essential to keep an eye on the functioning of IoT devices from time to time. You should have a plan for the maintenance of an IoT device or sensor.
      For example, if your IoT device or sensor stops sending the data, it can affect your business operations. Therefore, you should have an action plan that should send a notification to the owner when the device stops transmitting the data.
    • Action and Analysis
      IoT devices should be connected to execute any specific action based on the data collected via IoT sensors. For example, if temperature sensors send the alert about the increased temperature level in the room, the air conditioner should automatically manage the temperature level.

    The best MDM solutions

    1. ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus (FREE TRIAL)

    ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus

    ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is a free MDM solution that can monitor desktop computers, laptops, smartphones, and tablets. The software supports multiple operating systems including Windows, Mac OS, Chrome OS, iOS, and Android. Through the customizable dashboard you can monitor mobile smart device status, giving you complete visibility over the connected devices your employees bring to work.

    The mobile asset management experience offered by ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is very comprehensive. The dashboard also enables you to view additional information on devices including device owners, installed applications, and more. You can schedule regular device scans to keep this information updated.

    If there are any problems with a device you can use remote troubleshooting to take control of the device and find the root cause of the issue in real-time. The administrator can use a remote chat to communicate with the end-user of the device. The chat can also be used to issue security commands.

    ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager is recommended to enterprises who want a free mobile device management solution. The software’s free for up to 25 devices. ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is available on-premises (for Windows) and in the cloud. For pricing information, you must request a personalized quote from the company directly. You can download the 30-day free trial.

    EDITOR’S CHOICE

    ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is a complete enterprise mobile management package that comes in both on-premises and cloud-based versions. Include a configuration manager for single or mass device set up and there is also a self-enrollment app that you can use for your device enrollment program. You can also set different policies for business-owned and user-owned devices.

    2. Kandji (FREE TRIAL)

    Kandji Dashboard Screenshot

    The setup for a group of devices is planned in a system called Blueprints. You can create the same Blueprints for different models of mobile devices because the features that you include in one of these plans relate to the applications and access rights, which sit on top of the operating system and aren’t hardware dependent. You don’t have to apply the same Blueprint to all devices, so you can create different plans for different groups of users.

    User accounts can be acquired from third-party apps, so you can import the accounts that you have already set up in systems, such as Slack or Okta. This allows you to easily create a single sign-on environment for all of your mobile devices, also coordinating access rights to on-premises Macs.

    You set up an account on the Kadji website and then download an agent onto each of the devices that you enroll in the service, so there are both cloud and on-device elements to this system. The starting price for the package is $399 per month for up to 100 devices. You can get a 14-day free trial, which starts with a system demo to assess the Kandji service.

    3. VMWare Workspace ONE

    VMWare Workspace ONE

    VMWare Workspace ONE is a mobile device management tool that can be used to remotely manage devices. With VMWare Workspace One you can configure devices in bulk with the Apple Device Enrollment Program, Know Mobile Enrollment, and Android zero-touch enrolment.

    To manage devices, you can configure policies that determine restrictions and assign them to devices. You can distinguish between devices and assign them based on the operating system or ownership type. Ownership types are divided into BYO (Bring Your Own) and corporate-owned so you can tell which devices are company-owned and which are owned by employees.

    The platform also enables you to automatically push applications to devices. This means you can purchase applications in bulk and deploy them efficiently without wasting any time. When it comes to adding new devices, users can enter credentials into an onboarding workflow to join the management solution.

    VMWare Workspace ONE is suitable for enterprises of all sizes and comes with a range of pricing options, due to its seven editions. Prices start at 800.66 (£1.33) per device and $3.00 (£2.40) per user. You can try the 30-day free trial to manage up to 100 devices.

    Choosing the right mobile device management system

    The growth of mobile device usage and the steady push towards IoT devices has changed the reality of network monitoring. Monitoring mobile devices is now just as important as managing computers. MDM software solutions make the remote network monitoring process easier by allowing one location to monitor all the devices throughout your network.

    Our editor’s choice for this article is ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus because it supports enterprises with an easy-to-navigate user interface and a free package. Other choices like AirWatch Workspace ONE and BlackBerry Unified Endpoint Management are also standout alternatives.

    Taking a proactive approach to monitoring mobile devices allows you to eliminate potential entry points to your network and keep your data safe. If you’re not already monitoring mobile devices consider investing in a solution.

    Search for devices

    You can configure the search scope through a server property, include.device.properties.during.search, which defaults to false. To include all device properties in a device search, go to Settings > Server Properties and change the setting to true.

    Many mobile operators or device manufacturers provide lists of authorized mobile devices. You can use these lists to avoid having to enter a long list of mobile devices manually. Endpoint Management supports an import file format that is common to these supported device types: Android, iOS, and Windows.

    The official version of this content is in English. Some of the Citrix documentation content is machine translated for your convenience only. Citrix has no control over machine-translated content, which may contain errors, inaccuracies or unsuitable language. No warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied, is made as to the accuracy, reliability, suitability, or correctness of any translations made from the English original into any other language, or that your Citrix product or service conforms to any machine translated content, and any warranty provided under the applicable end user license agreement or terms of service, or any other agreement with Citrix, that the product or service conforms with any documentation shall not apply to the extent that such documentation has been machine translated. Citrix will not be held responsible for any damage or issues that may arise from using machine-translated content.

    DIESER DIENST KANN ÜBERSETZUNGEN ENTHALTEN, DIE VON GOOGLE BEREITGESTELLT WERDEN. GOOGLE LEHNT JEDE AUSDRÜCKLICHE ODER STILLSCHWEIGENDE GEWÄHRLEISTUNG IN BEZUG AUF DIE ÜBERSETZUNGEN AB, EINSCHLIESSLICH JEGLICHER GEWÄHRLEISTUNG DER GENAUIGKEIT, ZUVERLÄSSIGKEIT UND JEGLICHER STILLSCHWEIGENDEN GEWÄHRLEISTUNG DER MARKTGÄNGIGKEIT, DER EIGNUNG FÜR EINEN BESTIMMTEN ZWECK UND DER NICHTVERLETZUNG VON RECHTEN DRITTER.

    CE SERVICE PEUT CONTENIR DES TRADUCTIONS FOURNIES PAR GOOGLE. GOOGLE EXCLUT TOUTE GARANTIE RELATIVE AUX TRADUCTIONS, EXPRESSE OU IMPLICITE, Y COMPRIS TOUTE GARANTIE D’EXACTITUDE, DE FIABILITÉ ET TOUTE GARANTIE IMPLICITE DE QUALITÉ MARCHANDE, D’ADÉQUATION À UN USAGE PARTICULIER ET D’ABSENCE DE CONTREFAÇON.

    ESTE SERVICIO PUEDE CONTENER TRADUCCIONES CON TECNOLOGÍA DE GOOGLE. GOOGLE RENUNCIA A TODAS LAS GARANTÍAS RELACIONADAS CON LAS TRADUCCIONES, TANTO IMPLÍCITAS COMO EXPLÍCITAS, INCLUIDAS LAS GARANTÍAS DE EXACTITUD, FIABILIDAD Y OTRAS GARANTÍAS IMPLÍCITAS DE COMERCIABILIDAD, IDONEIDAD PARA UN FIN EN PARTICULAR Y AUSENCIA DE INFRACCIÓN DE DERECHOS.

    ESTE SERVIÇO PODE CONTER TRADUÇÕES FORNECIDAS PELO GOOGLE. O GOOGLE SE EXIME DE TODAS AS GARANTIAS RELACIONADAS COM AS TRADUÇÕES, EXPRESSAS OU IMPLÍCITAS, INCLUINDO QUALQUER GARANTIA DE PRECISÃO, CONFIABILIDADE E QUALQUER GARANTIA IMPLÍCITA DE COMERCIALIZAÇÃO, ADEQUAÇÃO A UM PROPÓSITO ESPECÍFICO E NÃO INFRAÇÃO.

    Authorship:

    https://www.leewayhertz.com/iot-device-management/
    https://www.comparitech.com/net-admin/mobile-device-management-software/
    https://docs.citrix.com/en-us/citrix-endpoint-management/device-management.html
    Device management

    In a bring your own device (BYOD) work environment, users expect to be able to work from any location at any time, on the device of their choice. Moreover, users now typically have several identities, meaning that they use their devices in both work-related and non-work-related contexts. For example, they might bring a personal tablet to a business meeting and expect to access files on a team’s Microsoft SharePoint site, or they might present a Microsoft PowerPoint presentation over Microsoft Skype for Business. They’re likely to check both work and personal email accounts on their phone, and may use their phone camera to take photos of whiteboard sessions to help them remember what a work group collaborated on during a meeting. On both types of device, they’re likely to have a mix of apps, some for personal use and some for work.

    IMG_0021

    Network Device Management Software

    SolarWinds ® Network Configuration Manager (NCM) is built to give you broad control over your config backup policies. You can create a scheduled job by identifying the devices and configs you want to back up and specifying the times when the network backup will be made. You can also choose whether you want to backup all configs or just the ones that changed since the last backup. Next, you can configure an email notification and attach the results log. NCM is designed to organize your archives by device and date to help you locate them quickly.

    Network Configuration Manager is built to simplify change detection by downloading and comparing configs to their prior, backed-up versions while monitoring syslog and SNMP messages for real-time notifications. In addition to detecting changes, NCM helps identify who made the change and provides a visual comparison highlighting the config changes.

    Make bulk config changes with config change templates

    Network Configuration Manager supports scripting and using powerful config change templates, so you can make bulk configuration changes. Scripts are useful for making simple changes on similar devices, but for more complex changes, you can use config change templates determined by the properties of the target device. This allows you to develop one script and deploy it on dissimilar device types. In addition, NCM provides immediate or scheduled execution with result logging and reporting.

    No matter the size of your business, network device management can help you save money by enhancing your cybersecurity and reducing downtime. Unauthorized or failed config changes can lead to downtime, loss of productivity, or even security vulnerabilities, which can allow bad actors to access your network.

    How MDM Conditional Access works

    MDM policies are applied to groups of users (it will affect all of the user’s devices) and they can enforce Conditional Access to Exchange Online, SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business through any of the supported mobile applications.

    Conditional Access works like this: when a user logs into Office 365 through a supported mobile app, the app checks with Azure Active Directory to see if the user is subject to a Conditional Access policy. If the user has a policy assigned, and the device is not marked as enrolled and compliant, the application prompts the user to enroll the device in MDM. In the case of an Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) client, Exchange sends an email with a link to enroll. Once the user has enrolled the device, the device settings policies are sent to the device, and the user must update the device to meet the appropriate settings such as PIN and encryption. After the settings are updated, the agent on the device informs the management service, which in turn marks the user’s device as enrolled and compliant in Azure Active Directory.

    Solution

    Microsoft Digital has been involved in mobile device management (MDM) for several years and is evolving strategies and best practices to ensure the proper balance between convenience and security as BYOD becomes the norm in organizations of all sizes.

    Microsoft Digital approaches MDM a bit differently today than it did in the past. Even as recently as 2013, the focus was much more on providing access to applications. Now, however, the focus is on access as defined by certificate and profile provisioning. In the future, the focus will be on conditional access that is based on the state of the device as interpreted through the MDM system and Microsoft Azure Active Directory.

    The Microsoft Intune and Microsoft Azure teams are working together to provide solutions so that Microsoft Digital can address a range of related issues: identity and access management, mobile device and app management, and information protection. The first step is to make Microsoft Digital cloud-based and enable a mobile workforce.

    Identity and access management

    For employees who use multiple devices for work, a key convenience—a requirement, even—is to have single sign-on (SSO) and a common identity, so that they can get their work done on whatever device suits them at the moment. A common identity enables application access management, regardless of whether those applications are on the device or in the cloud. This ensures that the user can have a consistent experience across devices and remain as productive as possible.

    Microsoft Digital is delivering identity and access management by providing that SSO experience, using federation to manage access to external resources, and consistently managing identities across on-premises and cloud-based identity domains. This helps Microsoft Digital address the matter of managing access.

    Developers can build applications that use the common identity model, integrating applications either with Active Directory Domain Services for on-premises applications or with Azure for cloud-based applications.

    Azure Active Directory syncs with on-premises Active Directory Domain Services through Azure AD Connect. Azure Active Directory enables self-service password changes and resets, and self-service group management for internal users. It also supports multifactor authentication, so that internal users don’t have to carry around their smart cards.

    Multifactor authentication provides an additional layer of security in case a device falls into the wrong hands or is used improperly. When a user attempts to log on or perform an action that is subject to multifactor authentication, the application or service confirms the user’s identity by sending a text, making a phone call, or using a mobile app. Typically, this additional authentication factor is a numeric code, such as a personal identification number (PIN), and may only be intended for a single use. The user must respond (usually within a limited period, such as 10 minutes) before the application or service allows him or her to proceed.

    Credential caching enables enterprises to determine how long credentials can be cached on a device. This allows the enterprises to customize the user experience when users access applications and resources on devices. For example, enterprises can specify how long credentials pass through during logon or device registration, so that users do not have to enter their credentials so many times.

    Mobile device management

    Users prefer a consistent experience when they access and work with their line-of-business (LOB) apps, no matter what device they use, how often they use it, and what platform it runs. Device enrollment should be simple, and the process for finding and working with apps and other internal resources should be familiar. In addition, policies should help users feel secure that their personal data is protected on devices that they also use for work, and it should be possible to remove devices that users no longer want included in a managed environment.

    Device enrollment

    Users can enroll a device relatively quickly in Intune. Notably, the process is opt-in rather than opt-out. This sets a friendlier tone for the experience, because it doesn’t feel like a mandate. Users recognize the value of being able to use personal devices for work, and voluntarily enroll them.

    Similarly, when users no longer want to use a device for work, they can easily remove it by using the Intune console (the web portal for information workers). For example, if a device has been lost or stolen, the user can either remove it for himself or herself, or request that Microsoft Digital do so. When a device is removed, corporate assets are automatically removed from it. Devices can be completely wiped or just selectively wiped. See the “Device retirement/wiping” section later in this document.

    Authorship:

    https://www.solarwinds.com/network-configuration-manager/use-cases/network-device-manager
    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/blog/2015/07/21/explore-the-built-in-mobile-device-management-mdm-feature-for-office-365/
    https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/insidetrack/mobile-device-management-at-microsoft

    5 Business Growth Strategies for your company to increase profit

    Unless you can say how much each effort is contributing to your company’s growth, you won’t be able to get the maximum out of them. You know, when Peter Drucker said that “What gets measured gets managed,” he may well have been talking about growth.

    Breaking down your sources of growth.

    business growth

    Growing a successful business is easier said than done and companies of all sizes face a lot of challenges. Wondering how you can ensure that your business is sustainable? You need to develop a growth strategy for your company. If you don’t have a solid plan for growth, you are actually increasing the chance of losing your business to your competitors.

    If you want to grow your company, you need determination, good business practices, and application of good business growth strategies. Keep in mind that an effective growth strategy is more than simply envisioning long-term success. You should figure out measurable steps in your growth and follow them.

    Of course, small and medium-sized businesses vary greatly in their size and capacity for growth. They have different organizational structures and management styles but it is apparent that SMBs experience common business growing pains and problems at similar stages in their development.

    Types of business growth strategies

    Traditionally there have been four major business growth strategies. However, I expanded on the existing framework to include a few more. So, here are seven specific types of business growth strategies that you can use to fuel growth for your brand.

    1. Market development (market penetration)

    Market penetration strategy (or market development) is a business growth strategy in which you attempt to sell your existing products into untapped markets. This involves identifying new markets that would be a good fit for your current product line.

    Market development is a common growth strategy because it allows you to move beyond your existing customers. As a result, you’ll expand your share of the market. This type of segmentation may involve targeting a new industry, new demographic, new corporate department (e.g., going from HR to finance), or new geographical location.

    They started as a product accessible only to Harvard University students. From there, they expanded to include Stanford, Columbia, and Yale. Next they opened the platform to all Ivy League and a number of Boston-area schools. Then, they expanded access to colleges around the U.S. and Canada.

    2. Market disruption

    Market disruption involves coming into a well-established industry that is usually dominated by a few legacy brands and proceeding to do things completely differently than everyone else. There are a number of ways you can potentially disrupt a market, including:

    3. Product expansion or diversification

    Developing new products or adding new features to existing ones can be a highly effective business growth strategy. Product development opens your brand up to new audiences who weren’t interested in your brand before.

    4. New channels

    New distribution channels rank among the top 10 business strategies for growth because they propel revenue growth without any product changes. Ecommerce businesses like Allbirds have increased revenue by also growing their brick-and-mortar presence. Whereas Allbirds was exclusively online in the beginning, they currently boast 29 real-world stores.

    Sometimes, one company’s identification of a new distribution channel can trigger a tsunami of change throughout the industry. Take Salesforce. They introduced the idea of cloud-based, subscription software in an industry dominated by large, expensive, complex enterprise software requiring an army of professional service reps to get it to work. Salesforce went on to grow rapidly, and today it’s a $21 billion+ entity. The software industry transformed, and today is completely filled with other SaaS offerings.

    5. Strategic partnerships

    Strategic partnerships with other brands can generate growth that otherwise wouldn’t be possible. For example, if you partner with a company that offers a product or service that complements yours, you get access to their audience, and vice-versa. You also receive referrals from your strategic partner and benefit from the goodwill built up around their brand.

    An example of a strategic partnership that worked well is the one between Lyft and Taco Bell. Lyft offered Taco Bell delivery service to its customers, in which a Lyft passenger could request a mid-trip stop at a local Taco Bell (“Taco Mode”) with a simple tap within the Lyft app. The partnership led to free publicity for both companies and an increase in sales for Taco Bell.

    Strategic partnerships can also focus on an improved or unique product. Once again, looking at Taco Bell, a partnership with Doritos resulted in the creation of the Doritos Locos Taco. To say it was a massive hit is an understatement. Within the first 18 months of the new product launch, Doritos Locos Taco sales surpassed 800 billion.

    6. Acquisitions

    There are some distinct advantages to acquisitions. They allow you to reduce competition by acquiring direct competitors. They allow you to gain access to proprietary technology that would take significant time and money to develop yourself. And they give you access to the acquired company’s customer base.

    7. Organic growth

    Out of all the business growth strategies, organic growth is by far the ideal. It means you’re able to spur growth without the reliance on mergers and/or acquisitions. As for your marketing strategy, it means you’re growing without the need for advertising, where once you stop spending, you stop growing.

    Largely through organic growth, a home goods startup in a $29 billion market went from zero to a 3% market share within 5 years. Organic search was a major factor in the rapid growth, with the startup attracting 4.1 million organic visits to its website each year.

    With organic growth, your customer acquisition cost is lower, your return on marketing spend is higher, and it puts you on a frictionless upward trajectory. The more organic growth you can achieve, the less you have to spend on marketing and the more you can invest in further developing your brand, developing new products, and delighting your customers.

    Combine business growth strategies to win

    The fintech company, founded in 2005 in Stockholm, Sweden, enables consumers to make product purchases without full payment at checkout. Rather than pay in full, shoppers can divide their payments into four interest-fee installments, pay the full amount within 30 days, or extend payment up to three years. The result is a 45% increase in average order value from shoppers paying with flexible installments.

    Klarna has also been focused on geographical expansion, entering new markets across Europe and finally the U.S. Today, Klarna delivers flexible purchase options to 90 million consumers across 250,000+ merchants in 17 countries. More than 2 million transactions are processed globally through Klarna technology daily.

    Growth Strategy Examples

    Increasing market penetration

    In many ways, trying to increase market penetration is a bit of a win-lose game where every new customer you make is a customer loss for another company that’s targeting the same market. Put simply, increasing your market share implies serving customers that would otherwise be served by a competitor (aka stealing other companies’ customers).

    For example, in the cloud computing industry, Amazon Web Services (AWS, a company owned by Amazon.com) has retained most of the market for many years, but Microsoft’s Azure service has been growing at a fast pace at the expense of AWS’ market share.

    Targeting new customer segments

    Chobani line of products

    For example, yogurt maker Chobani has introduced different presentations for its yogurt offers that go well beyond its popular fruit-in-the-bottom presentation. It now features Flip®, a yogurt-based snack that students and office workers can grab “on the go,” and a yogurt drink that has amassed avid fans among sports enthusiasts who consume it as a post-workout drink.

    Entering new markets

    Consider the case of a motor oil company that makes and distributes lubricants for the automobile industry. To serve its markets the company has distribution deals with auto repair shops, department stores, and gas stations since those are the places where their target customers, i.e., car owners, usually buy motor oil.

    In an expansion effort, the company could decide to create a new brand of oil targeting trucks and the heavy machinery industry. Although the underlying product is relatively the same, its distribution channels, customers, pricing policies, presentation, and even its business model will have to be different because the company will be now attacking a different market.

    Selling new products to existing customers

    For example, when ride-sharing app Uber introduced its food delivery service Uber Eats, it leveraged its vast user base to promote the service and millions of their existing customers immediately downloaded the new app within a few hours. Any other food delivery service trying to compete against Uber Eats will be at a big disadvantage if it has to build its audience from scratch.

    Creating complementary products

    A potentially great way to increase sales in operating businesses is through the development of complementary solutions that help increase demand for your products. Think about Nestlé’s success with its Nespresso machines which multiplied sales of its coffee products and helped the company leapfrog in the very competitive coffee space.

    Nespresso innovative products.

    Nespresso turned out to be a great “vehicle” to deliver Nestlé’s coffee products, making it a perfect match for the company, reminding us a little of the success of Gillette’s famous razor and blade business model that we mentioned earlier.

    Productization of the value chain

    Another area that’s usually ignored, but that could offer important growth opportunities, is what we call the productization of the company’s value chain. In other words, taking something that the company is very good at and offering it to third parties as a standalone product or service.

    For example, back to Amazon Web Services (AWS), the company allows companies around the world to use Amazon’s vast array of servers and cloud computing tools for their own purposes. AWS leverages a technology platform that Amazon already needed anyway to run its own operations and makes it available for third parties to use for a fee, giving Amazon the opportunity to scale this operation to levels it would never have reached on its own.

    Shifting focus from customers to buyers or vice versa

    You may find space for growth by exploring the relationships between buyers and users that exist in your markets. In the healthcare space, for example, some companies have stopped promoting their products to doctors, which most providers do, and instead refocused their efforts to reach patients directly through targeted advertising and promotional efforts.

    Inorganic Growth Strategy

    I have found that most definitions of inorganic growth (also known as non-organic growth) try to limit it to mergers and acquisitions (M&A), however they leave out two alternatives to M&A that I believe should be evaluated before considering an acquisition: strategic alliances and corporate investment.

    To make sure we are not limiting ourselves too much, let’s define inorganic growth as any growth strategy that results from controlling another company’s resources, rather than developing those resources ourselves.

    In most cases, you will go the inorganic route as a way to produce rapid and strategic results, catch up in a market where you were left behind, access key assets and intellectual property, or to build synergies to put your company in a favorable position against competitors.

    This means that inorganic business growth are almost always of a strategic nature and involve certain levels of risks, especially M&A, but those risks can be mitigated by testing the waters first through one of the alternatives.

    Strategic growth alliances

    At its most basic level, a strategic alliance is a collaboration agreement between at least two companies to pursue a common set of strategic growth goals and is usually a cost-effective alternative to an acquisition or a merger.

    This is what car manufacturer Ford and clothing retailer Eddie Bauer did when they joined forces to create the widely successful Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer Edition, which featured premium leather seats and other luxury perks in an effort to compete with Japanese companies in the luxury SUV market.

    One reason to consider a strategic alliance instead of a full-blown merger is that an alliance can achieve most of the same growth strategy goals without the commitment and complexity of the real thing, making it a good alternative to see how the companies work together before making bigger commitments.

    The obvious downside of a strategic alliance is that we have to share the profits that the collaboration produces, and the fact that managing the combined effort as two separate companies may turn out to be more difficult.

    A particular form of strategic alliance is the Joint Venture (which is normally referred to simply as a JV), where two or more companies co-invest in a new entity to undertake a new business or tackle a market together.

    A JV can be executed between private companies only or it can exist between government and private entities, an arrangement that’s usually referred to as a Public-Private-Partnership or PPP. These are very popular in developing countries to promote private participation in public projects.

    Strategic alliances work best when the capabilities of the companies are complementary in nature, and not competitive with respect to each other. For example, a company that provides industrial equipment could partner up with an engineering firm that provides design and construction services.

    Just as you’d do for a merger or an acquisition, you must do extensive research and due diligence on the potential partner to make sure their growth strategy goals for the partnership align with yours, and that the final agreement will be manageable.

    Corporate investment

    Another way to test the strategic growth waters without getting too wet is by investing in companies that operate in a space that’s attractive for us. This is somewhat popular in large corporations and is a judicious step prior to a full acquisition.

    These investments can be done by directly acquiring a minority piece of the target company, or by allocating money in common investment funds (e.g. private equity funds) which find and screen companies operating in a particular space.

    A new trend that’s becoming popular for making direct investments in early stage companies is by creating a Corporate Venture Capital (CVC) arm inside your company that finds and screens potential targets in need of seed, growth or expansion capital.

    Through a CVC program, you create a fund to invest in startups in the form of equity. With this, your company becomes a shareholder in the entrepreneurial company as a way to keep a close watch on its developments and progress.

    It is startups, not large corporations, that usually redefine industries and change the ways of doing business. Our corporations are usually slow, bureaucratic and careful, while startups are agile, creative and fearless.

    If well structured, a CVC plan should be a win-win for both sides: the startup gets access to funds and markets, while the corporation gets to expand its product portfolio with cutting-edge developments without the risks and costs of an in-house innovation effort.

    Sources:

    https://extrabrains.net/5-business-growth-strategies/
    https://terakeet.com/blog/business-growth-strategies/
    https://strategyforexecs.com/growth-strategy/