Keeping Cool - Tips to prevent your Comms Room from overheating

Posted June 21st, 2017 by

Whilst we are revelling in the current sunshine and summer temperatures, there will be those struggling to cope and it’s not just humans. As the mercury rises our electronic equipment can become extremely vulnerable.

During periods of high temperatures, it’s very important to keep an eye on your hardware, such as telephone systems and data servers. The increase in temperature can lead to your systems overheating and when this happens the reliability of the equipment can be dramatically reduced. In fact, your business can be seriously affected if your servers suddenly give up due to the heat.

Of course, some equipment will be tougher than others, but if you aren’t fortunate enough to have the very latest technology and huge amounts of money to install a state-of-the-art air conditioning system, then you may find your equipment needs a helping hand.
Most businesses house their equipment in a Comms Room or Server Room and have some form of air conditioning to keep things cool. An ideal temperature range is thought to be between 64 – 80 degrees fahrenheit. It’s worth keeping a close eye on the temperature and making sure it doesn’t exceed these figures.

If you do not have the luxury of air conditioning, there are a few things you can do to try and keep things under control.

Don’t over load the room with equipment that is not critical to the business. The more equipment the more heat is generated.

Buy a thermometer and check the temperature on a regular basis.

Make sure there is adequate air flow.

Turn off unnecessary items such as fluorescent lights to reduce the heat.

Consider investing in a portable air con unit. The cost may be less than the possible expenditure that down time may lead to.

Can we help?

Posted May 31st, 2017 by

At Telcare, we have many years of technical experience and knowledge of the telecommunications industry and feel that reason, combined with our honesty and integrity, is what keeps our customers coming back.

We understand that while business telecoms systems and telephone systems maintenance services tend to fall into standard categories, your needs may not. We know that every customer has a unique set of requirements so a tailor made touch is what's needed in order to provide the telephony service you are looking for.

To give you an idea of our services, we can provide you with the following:

- Free audit with telecom solution
- Telephone system sales and installation
- Structured cabling
- Project manage your entire office move
- Order new lines and reduce the cost of your calls
- Reprogramme your system to accommodate your company changes
- Supply additional equipment
- Maintenance

Please do not hesitate to get in touch, even if you feel your question is a small one, we will do our best to help.

The Business Diaries - March Launch

Posted April 11th, 2017 by

If you experienced a funny incident whilst going about your day you are most likely to mention it to your friends or family that evening. You will reel off the sequence of events with no hesitation, share the humour and entertain your loved ones. Congratulations you've just become a storyteller.

Each of us has thousands of stories like that, maybe not funny but nevertheless a story. Our whole life is a series of stories and experiences that help build our knowledge and wisdom. We don't have difficulty in relaying them because they are true, they happened to us. Think about telling your friend over coffee the latest school run saga, did you need a script? Of course not.

When it comes to business, and it's time to sell ourselves and our product or service, we tend to find this a lot trickier. There's so much more going on in our head, we need to deal with the fear of not knowing our audience, the desire to be liked, relaying all the boring facts about our business, oh and don’t forget that nagging pressure of needing to make a sale or ten. How on earth can we remember the presentation we put together, let alone our 60 second intro!

The Business Diaries tries to bridge the gap, storytelling with a business focus. A story from the heart. Enjoy engaging with your audience; who after ten minutes of listening will get a very good idea of who you are, and will place you firmly on the ladder of 'the know me, like me, trust me' process.

On March 23rd, the Business Diaries was launched. A group of business men and women got together to practise the art of storytelling. This involved two simple skills, speaking and listening, both equally important. Six Storytellers entertained us with tales relating to a theme of Working Away. From a case of shattered confidence in Greece, being the face of TGIs and working in PJs, to taking a quick business trip to Chile, returning years later with a husband and two children. After the interval, we were treated to the tale of working from home, that actually meant working away from home, volunteering to be sawn in half and the anecdotes of accepting different cultures and what to do when your dinner starts moving around the plate. As someone said “It was better than watching the telly.”

What a great evening! Perhaps I’d call it “A very British Icebreaker!” As they say “People Buy from People” but what’s missed off from that is “..they know and trust” and we certainly got to know a few people a whole lot more! Don’t worry guys your secrets are safe …yeah right! Neville Gaunt

The Business Diaries was an inspired event. I was thrilled and honoured to share the floor with some fabulous, entertaining, funny story tellers. Fascinating to hear stories from people you have got to know through business, learning things you never knew about them, makes you see them in a totally different light. It was a wonderful opportunity to be part of something new, something that was not business focussed and yet still gave you a networking opportunity in a social and fun way. Aly Harrold

Thanks go to our six brave and amazing storytellers, Amanda Flanders, Molly Wright, Linda Garcia, Jemma Fairclough-Haynes, Aly Harrold and Chris Pollard. Much appreciation also to Al Frank Monk, the Business Diaries Photographer and Shirley Eastley, the Business Diaries Coordinator.

The next event will be June 8th at 6.45pm at the Medway Innovation Centre. The theme will be ‘Decisions Decisions’. Please do join us, tickets are available from Eventbrite

Spring Update

Posted March 22nd, 2017 by

What a brilliant time of year it is, winter is officially behind us, spring has sprung and summer is on the horizon.

Feeling energised, we have signed up Team Telcare to ‘Colour Me Purple’, the colour run organised by the Friends of Wisdom Hospice. If you fancy a 5km run, jog or walk (apparently, anything goes) whilst being covered in paint, then you can sign up here. If you want to sponsor Team Telcare, let us know, all funds go to the hospice which needs to raise £2,000 a day!Wisdom Hospice

2017 has got off to a productive start. Office moves have been keeping us busy. We help our customers right from the early stages and get involved with the planning. We believe good preparation paves the way for a smooth move. We create a checklist to make sure everything has been given consideration and action is taken at the right time in the moving process. No one likes to move into a new office and find they’ve forgotten something major.

canstockphoto40249156Once the decision to move has been agreed, customers often take the opportunity to upgrade their telephone system and their office set up. This helps them to make the most of the latest technology and improve their organisation’s way of working. The need to move has likely come about because of a change in the company’s working environment, maybe growth or scaling down, so acknowledging these changes at this point makes good sense. When it comes to the actual move, it’s not unusual for us to undertake the relocation of the system during the evening or over a weekend so business interruption is avoided. Customers always have the benefit of our helpdesk team for any niggles or last minute changes.

Recent installs have included a 45-extension system right on our doorstep here on the Medway City Estate. An engineer’s bonus, as not a lot of travelling involved on that job and always a pleasure to serve a neighbour.

We are now undertaking a major project to update the telecoms in a Grade II listed stately home located within a grand country estate. Let’s hope there aren’t any chandeliers involved!
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In addition, the helpdesk has been engaged in dealing with customer queries and problem solving issues that occur on a daily basis. Remote assistance is such a valuable part of our service. Providing a quick response to a customer’s call or email, enables them to get on with running their business and keep telecom disruption to a minimum. Our customer satisfaction surveys report that 84% of our customers felt that our response to their problem was dealt with ‘extremely quickly’. We are very proud of that statistic and are grateful to our clients for the feedback.

Introducing The Business Diaries, Storytelling in Business

Posted February 1st, 2017 by

Throughout 2017 we will be bringing you four amazing storytelling sessions told by business professionals who have some interesting experiences to share.

This is not a time for pitching products, it’s a time to hear about the personal experiences of fellow business men and women. The stories might be amusing, challenging, inspirational or perhaps a little sad but they’ll definitely be worthwhile hearing.canstockphoto20753801

The business community may appear a scary place for an entrepreneur when starting out; hearing honest accounts from fellow business men and women is not only motivating but confirms that the local business community are here to help, support and enable others to flourish.

Join us in March, June, September and December for an entertaining evening of storytelling. Each session will bring storytellers ready and willing to pass on their lessons learnt, the ups and downs of business and give a taster of life in their shoes.

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The first event will be held on Thursday March 23rd 2017 at 7pm at the Innovation Centre in Rochester.
The event is free, however there will be a limited number of seats so registration is required. Please go to Eventbrite to register.

If you are interested in the role of storyteller, please contact Lisa at lisa.settle@telcare.co.uk

20 Years and Counting

Posted January 30th, 2017 by

We are celebrating our 20th anniversary this month. The 20 years have flown by, it really does seem like yesterday when we were operating from our little office in Dartford.
20-years
We relocated to the Medway City Estate, Rochester in 2001 and since then have very much become part of the local community.

We have been extremely lucky to have a loyal team helping to steer the Telcare ship and we are very thankful for a fun and harmonious office environment.

Our customers have also been loyal; we still have customers that joined us back in 1997. Our client base has grown steadily and includes small companies with a few staff to larger companies with a few hundred.

Regardless of size, we always endeavour to assist our customers based on the understanding that all businesses are different and we therefore approach each job with a listening ear and a tailor made touch. We care about our work and getting things right.
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The Telcare path may have changed slightly over the years but our aims have been consistent and our customer pledge remains the same.

"Customers can be assured that our pledge to provide great service will not falter. We will continue to be known for our reliability. Our team will be knowledgeable and respond to queries promptly and thoroughly. Our aim is to deliver this service in a friendly way so that our customers enjoy doing business with us as well as feeling valued."

Customer Satisfaction Survey

Posted January 23rd, 2017 by

Customer Satisfaction Surveys are a great way for us to monitor how we are managing our service and of course how we can improve it. Our aim is to provide value to you and your business.

We do understand that answering lengthy surveys takes time away from your day, that’s why our survey only takes you two minutes to give us a lot of feedback. There are just eight questions and for ease of use the answers are multiple choice, so you really will whizz through it. istockcustomerservice

Please click here to go to our survey

Should you feel that you would like to add your own words and comment on something specific, or tells us about a member of our team who has been particularly helpful, please email our helpdesk. helpdesk@telcare.co.uk

Thank you, we appreciate your help.

2017 is off to a good start

Posted January 4th, 2017 by

2017 is off to a good start. Happy New Year to you all from Team Telcare.
Mix Fireworks or firecracker.
It’s time to grab the bull by the horns and focus on the new year ahead, it will be what you make it, but we all need a little support along the way. How fortunate we are then, to be located in Kent, where there’s a thriving business community with hundreds of business men and women encouraging each other along their chosen paths.

Having access to these marvellous men and women can be a most valuable asset for you and your business. We all need contacts to help our business grow. So how do you meet said marvels? You network! Being out and about in the business community, meeting like-minded people and developing mutually beneficial relationships is a positive move for any business. It’s a great way to find out what’s happening in your local business world, learn something new and receive free advice and mentoring.
On that note, we know of a few events coming up that you might wish to attend. canstockphoto6370084

MEBP Networking Breakfast is on Weds 11th Jan 8.30am to 10.30am at BAE Systems, Marconi Way, Rochester, Kent ME1 2XX

Medway Education Business Partnership is an organisation bringing together schools and businesses in order to prepare young people for the work place. The organisation is hugely successful in providing young people with opportunities to engage with local employers through various work experiences.
MEBP have just recently become a BTEC Training Centre in order to deliver Workskills Qualifications. They are very excited about their plans for 2017 and are holding a networking breakfast to bring everyone up to date and explain how businesses can get involved should they wish to. For more details or to book a place, please contact Dawn on 01634 204995 or email dawn@mebp.co.uk

The Networker’s Networking Event is on Thurs 16th Feb 9.30am to 3pm at Eastwell Manor in Ashford.

This event is for those who have only just started to network right through to the serial networker. There will be speakers running us through the pros and cons of networking and teaching us how to network effectively. There will also be some interesting information on the psychology of networking. To sign up for this event click here www.butterfliesanddreamsep.co.uk

Telcare will be attending both of these events and will look forward to meeting you there.

Vietnam to Cambodia, we smashed it!

Posted December 19th, 2016 by

I am extremely pleased to report that after months of training, fundraising and let’s be honest, sleepless nights, I am relieved to say that we’ve done it. My cycling buddies and I managed the arduous cycling journey beginning in Ben Tre, Vietnam and ending in Siem Reap, Cambodia. img_1793

The challenge was huge, both physically and financially, so when I first signed up, I would wake up at 3am and say to myself “Lisa what have you done”.

Even though our training was well planned, the one thing we really couldn’t prepare for was the heat. Temperatures soared to 38 degrees and on the first day that was quite a shock to the system, especially at the points when we were cycling without shade. img_1771

Surprisingly it didn’t take long for our bodies to adapt to the temperature and we soon got into the routine of early starts and long days; with water and snack stops planned at regular intervals along the way. Water stops often included ice, we would enjoy stuffing great chunks of it wherever we could, so that we had the pleasure of it gently melting down our backs whilst cycling.

One of the highlights throughout Vietnam and Cambodia was the effect we had on the children. They were so excited when we cycled by and would call out “hello, hello” whilst frantically waving at us. They were delighted when we shouted back or waved at them, it would often result in loads of giggles for them and sore throats for us. img_1750

The route, which was mainly flat, took us through villages and towns, over bridges, along water ways and on some ferries. We came across lots of interesting sights that ranged from temples and monasteries to street markets and paddy fields. Contending with the traffic did take some getting used to as it seemed as if it everybody did their own thing and that was completely acceptable to all the other road users. So being confronted by a motorcycle, carrying an entire family going the ‘wrong’ way, soon became a normal occurrence. img_1637

The ‘sore bum’ subject was a matter for discussion most evenings, which usually resulted in extra applications of chamois cream as well as saddle re-adjustments the next morning. Heat rash was quite common amongst the cyclists and a few of us had the odd war wound to bring home.

As you would imagine on a challenge like this there were naturally highs and lows for everyone. A particular low point for us was on our first day of cycling in Cambodia. Although it wasn’t the longest distance by far, we felt exhausted and I recall being extra fidgety in the saddle. When we eventually reached the hotel in a hot, tired and sticky state the first thing we wanted was a shower. Unfortunately, this particular hotel was fairly basic and the shower left a lot to be desired, so washing with a cup of water was a bit disappointing especially when you added the cockroaches into the mix.

img_1557 The good news was that there were lots of high points and we three girls laughed our way across Asia. Sally’s ability to turn a normal situation into something of hilarity kept Liz and I amused throughout. Her encounter with a cow whilst she was squatting in a field was really quite entertaining and something that will bring a smile to us forever.

During the adventure and on the training weekend, we got to know the representatives from the charities and understood more about their work with women with cancer. Equally we met ladies who had overcome their battles or had lost a loved one and were riding in their memory. This kept us going, a constant reminder of why we were raising the funds. rs3723_logostrap_final_rgb_3jos-cervical-cancer-trust-logologo-site

Between Liz, Sally and I we have raised £12,500.00 which has far exceeded our expectations and it’s still coming in, so enormous thanks go to you all for supporting us, we really do mean that.

So if you are thinking of taking on an adventure or a challenge of this type, give it a go, my experience has shown me that I am braver than I thought and stepping outside my comfort zone was hugely worthwhile.

Intermittent Line Faults

Posted October 24th, 2016 by

Intermittent faults can be very frustrating for everyone involved. Trying to trace and resolve the fault is as difficult for the engineer, as it is for the customer who is trying to convince the engineer that there is definitely a fault!

Line faults often lie with the provider but it’s not always easy getting them to accept liability. An engineer’s visit will only consist of a 15-minute test and the likeliness of the fault occurring during this time is not high. This will then be classed as a failed visit and you, the bill payer, will be charged.
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We understand that aside from the irritation it can be disruptive to your business too, so we are always keen to find a solution as quickly as possible.

We have found that by collecting accurate and detailed information of the fault is very helpful. We ask our customers to record 5 examples of the fault with as much detail as possible, such as the date and time of the call, whether it was inbound or outbound, where the call has come from and the issue experienced. This can highlight trends, which makes it easier to pin point the cause. We have designed a spreadsheet to help, which, once completed can be sent on to the line provider, who will then have more information to work on.