June 2021 Newsletter

PNORS Technology Group

Welcome to the June 2021 PNORS Technology Group Newsletter.

Here at PNORS, we are looking forward to our annual Aligned2Achieve workshop.  Sales, operations, delivery and marketing teams from all PNORS businesses work together over two days to consolidate our plans for the coming financial year. 

Top of the Agenda is always to lock down where we can improve our current service and product offerings to our clients.  We look at how we can innovate as a business, where are the opportunities and how can we help our clients achieve whilst making their growth through technology easy.

Our sales and delivery teams work together to review and refine our project methodologies to ensure our project implementations continue to be professional and seamless and that we deliver the best possible outcomes for our clients.

The marketing team round off our workshop to plan how best to present the benefits available to our clients and the greater PNORS audience by embracing our integrated products, services and innovations.

Several services available from PNORS Group businesses are featured in this Newsletter. Cyber security, digitalisation and collaboration tools are vital and important business considerations whilst looking to the remainder of 2021 and beyond.

I trust you will enjoy reading this Newsletter.

Please look after yourselves and I thank you for your support.

Warm regards,

Paul Gallo 
PNORS Technology Group

In this issue

  1. What vulnerabilities are hidden in your IT infrastructure?

  2. Businesses with a Digitally Savvy Board Win in a Highly Competitive Market

  3. Microsoft Teams vs Zoom vs Webex: Why the battle for supremacy is making life easier

What vulnerabilities are hidden in your IT infrastructure?

Cyber security has never been more critical to business continuity.

We are acutely aware of the havoc created by ongoing and increasingly sophisticated cyber-attacks, both here and around the world.  Australian businesses are spending billions of dollars locking down their IT security in the wake of these much publicised and sometimes catastrophic breaches.

A vital first action in preparing your IT Business Continuity Plan is to identify and rectify underlying vulnerabilities before someone else does!

What is vulnerability in IT security?

Today, many companies are opting to perform vulnerability scanning on an annual basis to ensure their environment is protected. A vulnerability scan identifies gaps or weaknesses in the overall IT infrastructure, configuration, network architecture or technology that can be exploited. It is like leaving the front door of your house unlocked or windows open when you're not around. A vulnerability, if left unchecked, can significantly increase the risk of a cyber-attack. 

A vulnerability might be an unpatched operating system, it could be unprotected passwords and/or untrained staff susceptible to a phishing email containing a virus with a strain of ransomware that can then spread itself across your computers. However, as cyber-crime increases year on year, one way to add an additional layer of protection is to perform regular vulnerability scans.

Potential hidden IT vulnerabilities:

  • Hardware/Software:

    • Out of date/unpatched software and/or operating systems 

    • Misconfigured machines

    • Anti-Virus software that is misconfigured, out of date, illegally acquired

    • Pirated software

    • Loose password policies and overall security

  • Network:

    • Firewalls misconfigured

    • Firmware not updated

    • Routers misconfigured

    • Wireless passwords are loose 

  • People:

    • Inadequate security training/awareness 

    • Insider threats

    • Social engineering

  • Processes:

    • Lack of regular audits

    • Lack of business continuity plans

    • Lack of security


How do I know if I have vulnerabilities?

Netway Networks are now offering Vulnerability Scanning and Assessments as a part of their services offering.

If you are concerned about the ongoing cyber threats and want to ensure your business continuity is not affected, please request a free quote.

Businesses with a Digitally Savvy Board Win in a Highly Competitive Market

Digital transformation has been a forward-looking business imperative in many organisations over the last 5 years.  Digital leaders are predicting that those without a digital-first mindset and related skills, will be left behind. 

A lack of urgency at the Board level to adopt a digital-first approach will result in many Australian businesses quickly becoming uncompetitive in this rapidly evolving landscape.  

"Experts warn that many companies lack the skills to lead major digital implementations but, with strong support directly from the boardroom, the chance of long-term success is far greater. Fostering a data-driven culture is also an important component to any digital transformation journey - one where all executives, from the boardroom to senior management teams, can easily access data sitting within the company to make more informed decisions to better meet the needs of customers". (source)

We have identified a number of immediate technology implementations that can be adopted to help you maintain and grow your competitive advantage:

  • Customer portals – EDI or eCommerce ordering and procurement portals allowing customers to place orders, track documents, track delivery, and much more

  • Automate manual processes – digitalisation of manual processes by way of accounts payable/accounts receivable document automation, EDI, and more

  • Utilising the cloud – cloud calling, virtulisations and cloud hosting provide significant benefits to your business 

  • Investing in collaboration solutions – Teams, Webex, Zoom and others keep you connected regardless of where you are located and what needs to be done

  • Building a roadmap for future growth – talk with one of our Consultants today about the plans for your business and how to build a path for growth 

  • Auditing your cyber security – this should be done annually to ensure you remain operational regardless of your business size or type.  Allowing for this in your annual budgets is an absolute must to proactively mitigate your cyber risk.

  • Invest in your people – most importantly, provide training to keep your staff up to date with technology, cyber security and emerging trends 


Microsoft Teams vs Zoom vs Webex: Why the battle for supremacy is making life easier

Once upon a time, collaboration tools were not an everyday necessity or even on our radar. They were expensive, took up extensive machine bandwidth and were rarely available beyond Skype for Business. The easiest way to communicate was via phone or email and there was no ability to share data in real-time. 

Fast forward to 2021 where businesses and households have constant access to fast internet and the affordable and more powerful devices that stand up to the high bandwidths required to run virtual communications.  Add to the mix, quality and widely available communication tools and communication has never been so seamless.

However, as the Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic forced businesses everywhere to consider how best to manage their remote workplaces, the battle for market share amongst the vendors supplying collaboration solutions rapidly ramped up.  Solutions like Zoom experienced growth of 326%.  

Webex vs Zoom vs Microsoft Teams: The battle for market share 

There are a handful of collaboration solutions on the market, and they all have their own place depending on your technology stack. Most notably, tools like Webex, Zoom and Microsoft Teams are front runners in their space.  These tools are driven by technology that allows the hosting of voice/video chats with one-to-many participants. It is interesting to note that Skype was once the market leader, however, Microsoft recently announced a product end of life date of July 31, 2021. 

Now, most collaboration tools have voice/video chat, online meetings, file/data sharing and live chat amongst their core features and are continuing to move collaboration software into seamless communication tools. Additionally, as market share continues to fluctuate, all these suppliers are investing significantly in new and ground-breaking features to keep ahead of the competition and maintain a competitive advantage.

What it means for you

The ongoing evolution and development of collaboration tools leads to fantastic outcomes for end-users.  We get to enjoy and take advantage of these fresh and impactful developments without the previous price tags.

As Microsoft, Webex and Zoom contest to take the leading platform crown, one of the most recent developments is the integration of phones through IP-calling and further integrations to other business software, such as CRM, website integration and more. 

The competitive nature of these suppliers is driving the development of next-generation tools and advancing technology post COVID beyond recognition.

What's next for collaboration?

  • Open API's and further integrations

  • Chatbots and Smart Virtual Personal Assistants - many businesses are beginning to use SVPAs in the office for collaboration purposes such as note-taking, scheduling meetings and task reminders

  • Smart devices – advancements in video cameras, room kits, sound bars and microphones are just the beginning. Watch this space

  • Smart meeting rooms - the future of collaboration just got better with smart meeting rooms. From virtual assistants and interactive whiteboards to intelligent scheduling and 360-degree video cameras, there is a plethora of new technologies available to equip your meeting rooms

  • Artificial Intelligence - in the office, a voice-enabled smart assistant can arrange meetings and take notes for us in seconds. In the meeting room, AI-driven devices can make sessions run more efficiently by automating tasks such as rescheduling calls or sending crucial notifications. AI assistants can even suggest which resources or documents a person may need for a meeting and make them available to access when the session begins.