2021 Business Continuity Trends

The last year and a half has put business continuity plans under the microscope and forced organizations to make significant changes on the fly. Those that were prepared held a distinct advantage over those that were slow to adopt new technology. Maintaining operations and quickly recovering from a disaster can separate you from the competition and mitigate potential losses. Here we take a look at five of the hottest trends in business continuity for 2021.

SASE Adoption

Security Access Service Edge adoption has increased dramatically, and it looks to be the future network security for enterprises. The ability to access both cloud and on-premise applications allow for greater consistency and flexibility. SASE positively impacts visibility, control, attack surfaces, and latency, all while delivering superb performance.

Cloud Migration

Cloud computing and storage adoption has been steadily accelerating over the last decade, and the last year has proven the value the cloud provides. Remote access and security are two of the biggest benefits of the cloud, but there are other factors involved. Agility and scalability are major contributors to a flexible business model that lends itself to business continuity.

Hybrid Business Model

Although the pandemic is waning, the ability to work from home is an important factor in maintaining business continuity. The trouble is that many people don’t want to work from home, and certain positions are not possible or as effective when working remotely. The hybrid model that allows flexibility for both will only become more prevalent in the coming years.

Unified Communications

Unified communications is one of the hottest trends in business continuity as there are few more essential things in business than communication. Merging your phone system with messaging, conference, and meeting software while incorporating VoIP allows for greater flexibility along with the ability to work from anywhere with an internet connection.

Marketing Automation

Most marketing automation software is cloud-based which allows businesses to manage marketing assets and campaigns from anywhere. This ensures your marketing engine doesn’t come to a grinding halt when disaster strikes.Automation platforms also incorporate chat features and the ability to assign and track tasks from a centralized platform.

Alto9 can help your organization choose and implement the tools you need to maintain business continuity.
We work with your team to tailor a solution that fits the needs of your business. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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Jul 9 21
Michael Auer
10 Quotes About Freedom For Fourth Of July

As we celebrate Independence Day, it is important to remember that it’s not just about cookouts and fireworks, it’s about the freedom our nation enjoys because of the brave people willing to fight for it. Freedom can mean different things to each individual. Here we take a look at ten famous quotes about freedom to contemplate this Fourth of July.

1. “It does not take a majority to prevail… but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.” – Samuel Adams

2. “The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.” – Jim Morrison

3. “Liberty, when it begins to take root, is a plant of rapid growth.” – George Washington

4. “Freedom cannot be bestowed — it must be achieved.” – Elbert Hubbard

5. “Freedom is the open window through which pours the sunlight of the human spirit and human dignity.” – Herbert Hoover

6. “The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission.” – John F. Kennedy

7. “Better to die fighting for freedom then be a prisoner all the days of your life.” – Bob Marley

8. The secret to happiness is freedom… And the secret to freedom is courage.” – Thucydides

9. “You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4th, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.” – Erma Bombeck

10. “So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania! Let freedom ring from the snow capped Rockies of Colorado! Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California! But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia! Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee! Let freedom ring from every hill and every molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

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Jul 2 21
Michael Auer

Father’s Day is fast approaching but there is still time to pick dad up a new tech gadget to improve his life or simply keep him occupied. We’ve scoured the internet to bring you the ten best tech gadget gifts from a variety of different categories and price ranges.

DJI Mini 2 – Ultralight and Foldable Drone Quadcopter

“DJI Mini 2 is beginner-friendly, powerful, and well, mini. Impressive performance, stunning image quality, and creative videos are just a few taps away. Explore an entirely new perspective, capturing the moments that make your life truly yours.”

Marshall Stanmore II Wireless Bluetooth Speaker

“Marshall Stanmore II is the most versatile speaker in the Marshall line-up and is perfect for any room, big or small. It delivers on the promise of high-performance sound that is synonymous with the Marshall name.”

Universal Cup Holder Phone Mount

“Keep your phone handy and the screen visible with a car cup holder phone mount. Its adjustable base fits into most cup holders and it has a flexible gooseneck topped off with a universal grip that securely holds any smartphone and can rotate 360 degrees.”

Nokia 6300 4G

“Stay connected to everyone you love with WhatsApp and Facebook. Keep up with your top shows on YouTube and find your way with Google Maps – enjoy more streamlined experiences with speedy 4G. Plus, find answers, get information and reach out to friends with Google Assistant. All this powered to perform and packed into a durable polycarbonate shell so you can keep those chats going for longer.”

Carl Schmidt Sohn Indoor Smokeless Grill

“An indoor smoke-free barbecue feast is waiting for you! Different from the methane charcoal grill, this CSS barbecue grill uses advanced turbo smoke extractor technology. And the smoke can be inhaled quickly by the built-in fan. The transparent tempered glass cover can also block the smoke, so the portable indoor electric grill can provide you with a completely smoke-free barbecue feast!”

Solo Stove Bonfire

No one wants to constantly dodge campfire smoke and have their clothes and hair smell for hours after. Our design philosophy is all about maximizing the joy of the moment. Our Signature 360° Airflow Design™ creates a super efficient burn that’s not only mesmerizing to watch but a joy to sit around and make memories.

Apple Watch Series 6

“Apple Watch Series 6 lets you measure your blood oxygen level with a revolutionary new sensor and app. Take an ECG from your wrist. See your fitness metrics on the enhanced Always-On Retina display, now 2.5x brighter outdoors when your wrist is down. Set a bedtime routine ‘and track your sleep. And reply to calls and messages right from your wrist. It’s the ultimate device for a healthier, more active, more connected life.”

Philips Norelco OneBlade Hybrid Electric Trimmer and Shaver

“The Philips Norelco OneBlade is a revolutionary electric grooming tool with technology designed for men who wear stubble, beards, or facial hair styles; OneBlade trims, edges, and shaves any length of hair”

XGIMI Halo Portable Short Throw Projector

“Equipped with 1080p HDR 10 resolution (1920×1080), the Halo projector provides incredible contrast and color any time of day. Pair that with 800 ANSI lumens, and you are ensured a phenomenal movie, gaming, and musical experience.”


“Bondic® allows you to re-attach broken eyeglasses, refill holes in leaky plumbing, and rebuild just about anything – even fine china! Just apply the unique liquid formula to the damaged area, shine the special UV light on it for only 4 seconds, and voila! The liquid freezes into a rock-solid layer of clear plastic on your command!”

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Jun 17 21
Michael Auer

Technology will play a major role in your organization’s ability to quickly adapt to market changes, better serve your customers and remain operational through unforeseen circumstances. An agile business needs to be flexible and resilient. Here we take a look at a few key pieces of technology that will help you reach those objectives.

Cloud Computing

Business agility is enabled by the cloud by reducing complexities in a company’s IT operations by simplifying their management and thus, reducing costs. It fosters better delivery of internal resources that increases employee productivity and improves responsiveness to the customers.”

Cloud Storage

Using the cloud for storage gives you access to your files from anywhere that has an internet connection. In the event of a hard drive failure or other hardware malfunction, you can access your files on the cloud. It acts as a backup solution for your local storage on physical drives.”


According to RingCentral, VoIP can cost up to 68% less than traditional phone lines. Traditional on-premise phone systems leave you tethered to your physical location, whereas a VoIP platform can be accessed anywhere you can connect to the internet. This provides greater flexibility and ensures continuity of communications in the event of a disaster.

Video Conferencing

Video conferencing boosts productivity, saves time, reduces travel expenses, and overall promotes collaboration. The advantage of video conferencing is the ability to facilitate all of those benefits without requiring constant travel for face-to-face communication.”

Instant Messaging

Instant messaging allows companies to conduct meetings, create presentations, and send and receive applications online without the need to travel to other office locations. The technology also allows users to make corrections in documents and spreadsheets instantly, saving in printing and distribution costs.”

Document Sharing

One of the main advantages of online file storage and sharing is that collaboration is smooth. You can share files instantly, access information quickly, and avoid any unnecessary delays. That’s not all; you can work from anywhere and collaborate in real time with people in any part of the world.”

Marketing Automation

The best marketing teams use marketing automation to make their campaigns more accurate and to empower their sales team with better leads, and achieve greater ROI. Using marketing automation, marketers are better able to qualify leads and pass them onto sales, resulting in higher revenue and greater growth.”

Alto9 helps companies create great web applications, adopt DevOps processes, and maximize cost savings in the cloud. We help businesses scale effectively and control costs on any cloud platform with practiced cost-saving techniques and dedicated expert management.

Through our strategic partnerships with both RingCentral and Amazon Web Services, Alto9 can help you establish an agile business model incorporating unified communications and cloud computing solutions.

Download our free guide: Ascertaining Unified Communications

Jun 16 21
Michael Auer
15 Inspiring Quotes About Freedom And Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a time to honor those that have given their lives for our country and celebrate the freedom they have provided for us.  Throughout the history of our country, there have been many great people who have shared their thoughts and appreciation for our fallen soldiers.  Here are fifteen inspiring quotes about freedom and Memorial Day.

“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.” – Elmer Davis

“Heroism doesn’t always happen in a burst of glory. Sometimes small triumphs and large hearts change the course of history.” – Mary Roach

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them.” – John F. Kennedy

“…And if words cannot repay the debt we owe these men, surely with our actions we must strive to keep faith with them and with the vision that led them to battle and to final sacrifice.” – Ronald Reagan

“Those who have long enjoyed such privileges as we enjoy forget in time that men have died to win them.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt

“Our flag does not fly because the wind moves it. It flies with the last breath of each soldier who died protecting it.” – Unknown

“Freedom makes a huge requirement of every human being. With freedom comes responsibility.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

“As we set today aside to honor and thank our veterans, let us be mindful that we should do this every day of the year and not just one.” – Beth Pennington

“We must dare to be great; and we must realize that greatness is the fruit of toil and sacrifice and high courage.” – Theodore Roosevelt

“And they who for their country die shall fill an honored grave, for glory lights the soldier’s tomb a beauty weeps the brave.” – Joseph Rodman Drake

“The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example.” – Benjamin Disraeli

“It doesn’t take a hero to order men into battle. It takes a hero to be one of those men who goes into battle.” – Norman Schwarzkopf

“Who kept the faith and fought the fight; The glory theirs, the duty ours.” – Wallace Bruce

“I believe our flag is more than just cloth and ink. It is a universally recognized symbol that stands for liberty, and freedom. It is the history of our nation, and it’s marked by the blood of those who died defending it.” – John Thune

“I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.” – Nathan Hale

Alto9 will work with you to understand your business needs and translate that into a cost-efficient, secure, scalable cloud environment. Alto9’s experienced team of experts provides industry-leading application development, DevOps outsourcing, and cloud consulting services. Alto9 customers have direct access to their AWS certified engineers, who work around the clock to ensure customer success. Contact us today for a free consultation.

May 28 21
Michael Auer

There has been a significant migration to new communication tools such as VoIP platforms, meeting software, chatbots, and document sharing centers over the last two years. Many businesses made the switch to a work from home model. These tools have become more commonplace over the last decade and have now become an essential piece of digital transformation. Communication is key in all aspects of business, and keeping your tools up to date is a must. Here we take a look at six questions to consider when upgrading your communication tools.

How Reliable Is It?

It doesn’t make sense to make a switch to a tool that will be less reliable than your current solution. Most communications vendors will be transparent about expected uptime, and many of them leverage it as a selling point. Be sure to do your research and cross-reference any data you receive from a vendor with trusted industry publications. Decide what amount of potential downtime is acceptable for your organization and do a deeper dive into those tools that fit your requirements.

Does It Work With Mobile Devices?

In today’s business world, there is a great deal of communication that takes place through mobile devices. Ensuring you choose mobile-friendly tools will help keep you up to date with what is a growing trend. If your business has team members who work from home or need to be traveling for significant periods of time, this feature is a must. Being able to communicate with your clients and team members from any location even when they don’t have access to a computer is a significant advantage for your business.

How Quickly Can You Scale Usage?

Being able to scale your usage up and down quickly without incurring exorbitant costs provides your business with the flexibility to take on large projects at will. When it comes to telephony, this is where VoIP platforms hold a distinct advantage over traditional PBX systems. Adding additional lines can be as simple as a few clicks and does not require additional hardware. If your business frequently scales based on projects, this will be something to strongly consider when purchasing a new communications tool.

Is It Cost-Effective?

Finding a cost-effective solution that fits all of your needs is the goal of anyone seeking a new communication tool. It is important to look at this type of purchase with a long-term perspective and ensure you won’t require another change as your business grows. This is also why scalability should be factored into your potential costs. In most cases, switching to a VoIP platform will provide significant cost savings when compared with your current phone system. They also eliminate the need for new hardware or phones as they are cloud-based and softphones can be employed.

Will It Make Your Team More Productive?

The decision to purchase a new communication tool should factor in whether or not it will ultimately benefit your team as far as productivity and job satisfaction goes. Will this tool make their job easier and help them complete tasks more efficiently? Are there things they need to be doing that can’t be done with your current set of tools? You most certainly do not want to incorporate a tool that will hinder their work either. Be sure to discuss potential changes with your team to determine the impact this kind of change will make on them.

Does It Come With Adequate Support?

When purchasing any kind of new technology, you want to ensure you’ll have adequate support to help rectify any issues that arise. Does the seller offer in-depth onboarding and training assistance when you first purchase the tool? What kind of availability does their customer support team offer? Ideally, you’ll want to have them available during your company’s hours of operation to ensure you can have questions answered and things fixed when they need to be.

Through our strategic partnerships with both RingCentral and Amazon Web Services, Alto9 can offer solutions to help you establish both unified communications and business continuity.

Download our free guide: Ascertaining Unified Communications

May 25 21
Michael Auer

As organizations continue their move to the cloud, containerization has become an integral component of this strategy. The benefits of working with containers far outweigh the potential risks. When built correctly, containers are very secure and enable speed and flexibility in development. Modularizing applications into small microservices allows you to modify or remove features without disturbing the application as a whole. Containers will be a significant part of both DevOps and Agile moving forward, and the following benefits are the primary contributing reasons.

Agility and Scalability

It is far faster to provision new resources and deploy code with containers. The time it takes to start and scale a container can be a matter of seconds. With the complex procedures involved in allocating resources, a new virtual machine can take weeks to be provisioned. The higher build velocity also enables lower costs as developers are not bogged down with extra work. The small size of containers means thousands of them can be created without incurring additional overhead. Speed and agility are essential to keep operations smooth.

Consistency and Isolation

Containers essentially provide a sandbox environment for developers to work, isolating each project away from other applications. This means they are not drawing from critical resources such as CPU, storage, or memory to perform their work. Developers can work in predictable environments no matter where the application is deployed, as individual software dependencies can be included. This consistency means fewer bugs to diagnose and allows developers to make assumptions in their test environments that will be consistent in production.

Portability and Flexibility

Containers can run in nearly any environment, which makes for much easier development and deployment. They can run on virtual machines, the public cloud, bare metal, and even the leading operating systems, including Linux, Windows, and Mac. When an application runs in a container, it can be deployed across multiple operating systems or hardware platforms. These applications will run the same regardless of where they are deployed because containers carry all of their dependencies with them. They can also be moved from system to system with very little friction, providing added flexibility.

Most enterprises are currently running on virtual machines, but these benefits make a move to containers a necessity. Virtual machines need to include an operating system, whereas containers only require additional dependencies outside of the OS. This makes them much lighter, enabling faster deployment and more effortless scalability. Both of which are significant contributors to increased productivity and lower costs.

Alto9 will work with you to understand your business needs and translate that into a cost-efficient, secure, scalable cloud environment. Alto9’s experienced team of experts provides industry-leading application development, DevOps outsourcing, and cloud consulting services. Alto9 customers have direct access to their AWS certified engineers, who work around the clock to ensure customer success. Contact us today for a free consultation.

May 21 21
Michael Auer
How To Ensure Business Continuity In The Event Of A Disaster

Ensuring business continuity helps your organization maintain agility, become more resilient, save money, and avoid costly downtime. While it may be impossible to prepare for every situation, you can create a strategy to minimize your risk and get back up and running as quickly as possible. Business continuity has taken on an even greater focus in the wake of the ongoing pandemic as organizations have realized they are far more vulnerable than they initially thought. Thankfully, technology has allowed many of these risk factors to be mitigated and even eliminated. Here we take a look at how to ensure business continuity in the event of a disaster.

Create A Comprehensive Plan

The first step in being prepared for a disaster is to create a comprehensive business continuity plan. This should include everything from the team responsible for carrying out the plan to the strategy for getting back up and running after a disaster and everything in between. You’ll want to analyze your risks and potential vulnerabilities and develop a clear plan for addressing each one. Determine what it will take to maintain operations throughout a disaster and contingency plans for each vital aspect of your business.

Store And Backup Data In Multiple Locations

“Having proactive data backup procedures in place can add additional security for your business and allow you to handle any unforeseen data loss situations, keeping your productivity and brand stable. Since data loss can happen at any time and in a multitude of ways, just making backups is a good place to start.” Multiple location backup ensures that you will not lose your data regardless of the system that is impacted. Some options include desktop storage, cold storage, cloud storage, and personal hybrid cloud storage.

Invest In The Right Technology

A VOIP platform is essential to business continuity as you can connect phones over the internet, enabling your team to maintain communications anywhere there is a connection. Meeting software allows teams to stay connected for company briefings, team meetings, and client calls. Having a centralized marketing automation platform that houses all of your content and the tools you need to carry out campaigns assures you that your efforts will not be negatively impacted in the case of an emergency. Cloud computing allows your team to maintain operations and critical functions during a disaster and helps to avoid costly downtime.

Platforms such as RingCentral and Amazon Web Services have played a significant role in the continuity of organizations throughout the pandemic. These services allow you to maintain communications and operations seamlessly regardless of where your team is working. Alto9 can help identify your most prominent risk factors, develop a plan to ensure your business is ready for anything, and provide the technology necessary to make it all happen. Contact us today for a free consultation.

May 19 21
Michael Auer

7 Trends Driving The Future Of DevOps

DevOps has already become firmly entrenched in the technology industry as it allows businesses to deliver applications at a faster pace and makes maintenance easier for existing deployments. The world of DevOps is rapidly evolving as it continues to be a major component of digital transformation. Here we take a look at seven major trends driving the future of DevOps.

DevOps teams will increase the speed and quality of their releases. The main reason will be the popularization of Application Release Orchestration (ARO) tools, applications that combine pipeline management with release orchestration. That way, teams can deliver new applications more quickly, since teams can scale release activities across different pipelines and tools.”

With the rise of hybrid (remote/in-office) product teams, upskilling and online training initiatives will expand. As the pressure continues to rise to sell products and services through e-commerce sites, apps, or SaaS solutions, the lines between product and engineering teams will rapidly blur, giving rise to cross-functional, multidisciplinary teams that must learn and grow together.”

The shift left phenomena, which enables fixing of bugs/security issues early in the software development life cycle when it is cheapest to do so, is accelerating. By implementing a shared security responsibility model and enabling developers to take more ownership related to infrastructure, security and other critical production issues with code, organizations are shipping code faster and cheaper with less bugs.”

Migrating from monolithic to microservice and containerized architecture will be a must for all the company for their Digital Transformation journey. It’s not going to be a choice or option anymore. This is where the adoption of Kubernetes will be on rise and when organizations will adopt multi-cloud, Terraform will be the ultimate choice to automate Infrastructure.”

Serverless architecture is gaining significance amongst the DevOps community, as servers are not required to be provisioned and managed like a traditional hosting service. The technology leaders in this field include Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform, and they provide enhanced scalability, deployment, productivity, and user experience with nominal cost.”

Cloud-native security will become more critical as organizations embrace Kubernetes, serverless, and other cloud-based technologies. Teams need new tools and processes to protect assets, which is why we predict a wide adoption of DevSecOps in the coming year.”

AgileOps combines proven agile and DevOps techniques for I&O teams to improve agility, manage software development and swiftly respond to requirements. The ever-increasing need to quickly respond to user requirements in real-time will drive the further growth of AgileOps in IT operations.”

Organizations using a DevOps model deliver applications quicker and innovate faster. AWS offers elastic, on-demand infrastructure resources and tooling designed to support DevOps practices such as continuous integration and delivery, infrastructure as code, microservices, and monitoring & logging.

Partnering with Alto9 for DevOps consulting brings best in class managed staff augmentation. Think of it as ‘plug and play’ DevOps. Download the Alto9 Cloud Consulting Solution Brief to get more information about how we can help transform your business.

Solutions Brief
May 17 21
Michael Auer
How To Successfully Manage A Hybrid Work Model

Many organizations have made the decision to incorporate a hybrid work model beyond the pandemic. This move has been made with the knowledge that many people remain productive while working from home and prefer doing so. The office isn’t going to go away as it breeds camaraderie and collaboration, and many of us simply can’t wait to get back. There are pros and cons to each side, which makes the flexibility of the hybrid model ideal for today and the future. Some may choose to exclusively work in either location, while some will want to split time in each. Employee satisfaction and well-being have become a priority for forward-thinking organizations. Still, a number of factors need to be considered before employing a full-scale hybrid work model.

Technology Upgrades

In order for people to work from home and remain connected and productive, new technology is needed. This can come in the form of cloud storage and computing, VoIP platforms, and marketing automation. Even basic necessities like laptops, telephone, printers, monitors, backup batteries, and headsets need to be addressed. You want the people working from home to have everything at their disposal that they would have in the office. This might even include paying for internet service, stationery, desks, and chairs for your remote workers.

Clear And Consistent Communication

In order for a hybrid model to work, communication cannot be sacrificed. Meeting software, VoIP systems, instant messaging, and document sharing should all be incorporated to achieve unified communications both in and out of the office. Regularly scheduled team meetings and one-on-one sessions should be commonplace for organizations looking to employ a hybrid model and keep everyone on task. It is important that those working from home still feel like they are a part of the team and do not become isolated from the rest of the organization.

Flexible Hours And Location

In a hybrid work model, where your employee’s work should not be the only flexible thing. For those who do not need to be on the clock during a specific timeframe, their schedule should be primarily up to them. Let people work when they are the most productive. Allow for an appropriate work-life balance that enhances their effectiveness and helps them avoid burnout. Flexible work schedules also allow you to attract and retain top talent. “A 2018 survey found that 80% of workers would choose a job that offers a flexible schedule over those that did not.”

Well-Defined Goals And Objectives

For managers to keep everyone working toward a common interest, there needs to be well-defined goals and objectives for both individuals and the team as a whole. A shared calendar for each group is a great way to delegate tasks, schedule collaboration sessions and ensure everyone meets their deadlines. It can be very easy for things to slip through the cracks when your teams operate out of different locations. Clearly defining goals and objectives while leverage technology to track progress will all but ensure success in your hybrid work model.

Through our industry experience and strategic partnerships with Amazon Web Services and RingCentral, Alto9 can provide the expertise and technology needed to implement and manage a successful hybrid work model. Contact us today to learn more.

May 11 21
Michael Auer