Effective Use of Podcasting to Boost Audience Listening Share

Podcasting has been used for several purposes.  In fact, this new media has been used by business and non-profit organizations for product promotions or advocacy campaigns.  Educational institutions are also using podcasting to improve their learning systems.  

The effective use of podcasting starts from the production of audio material.  To become a powerful communication tool, podcasters need to apply quality production processes in their podcasts.  This means the audio material should be crisp, clear, and easy to understand so that target audiences will be encouraged to continue listening.  

In order to produce a quality podcast, certain equipments may be needed.  These equipments are necessary tools which could make or break a podcast.  Recorders, mixers, voice capture and editing software are just some of the needed tools to create a quality podcast.  

The use of podcasting may vary depending on the target audience of the podcaster.  For example, podcasts fulfilling corporate communication needs will significantly differ from educational podcast or political podcast.  However, all these podcasts need to follow quality production standards in order to gain popularity on the Internet.

Production processes and content of podcasts are important but the way they are delivered to target audiences also matters.  So another aspect on the effective use of podcasting is the creation of user friendly website that will host the podcast.  The website should be carefully designed in order to attract visitors to listen to the audio material.  It must contain text descriptions of the podcast and must utilize RSS tools for easier access.  

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Service level management and what it can really bring to an IT organization

What can service level management bring to an IT organization, really?

Despite the verification presented by modern trends pointing toward the increased dependence of business processes, services and decision making on IT assets (and their performance), it would seem that certain individuals are still not convinced of the inherent value of SLM (service level management).

The cold, hard reality is that technology is becoming a front-runner in the race for profits.  Where people used to buy physical objects in stores, they are now opting to purchase apps and/or shop online for goods / services.  This is a perfect illustration of why service level management is almost a necessity in today’s business world; and of course, those organizations that refuse to join the technology game are not only losing potential customers / sales, but they’re probably being outpaced in terms of overall sales.

Service Level Management isn’t even the most radical thing that an organization can do to restructure their IT component.  Instituting Service Level Management probably isn’t going to require switching platforms, hardware, or most operational protocols.  SLM is more about following through with a set of overlying principles which work together to help IT meet the expectations of the business element of any organization.

This process is started when a SLA (or service level agreement, which is akin to a blueprint for Service Level Management) is established and a complete inventory of all IT, and IT-related assets, is taken.  From there the service level manager (who is usually heading up the SLA design team) takes these ideas / data and begins to formulate a governance strategy based on what is possible (from a technological perspective) and what the ultimate short and long term goals for the parent organization are.

So IT is really responsible for helping modern businesses succeed, right?  More so than at any other time.  In fact, it would even appear that the potential for growth in the technological sector, particularly software, is somewhat boundless.   That is to say that; unlike the physical world where resources are finite, there are no limitations in the world of software.

This is great news for businesses because the production, implementation, and sale of software and apps are relatively inexpensive compared with the costs involved in producing and selling physical products.  Also, with software and software services, a large transportation, storage, and distribution network simply isn’t required.  In fact, extraordinary profits could feasibly be generated by a small team of knowledgeable and experienced IT personnel.  All of which could be managed by a service level manager.  Another great thing about SLM is that it is still flexible enough to allow for outside assistance.  For example, Service Level Management could easily account for utilizing 3rd party services (like cloud computing).   This is good news considering people’s proclivity for outsourcing certain 3rd party services and attempting to integrate them with their present network(s).

Above all, service level management brings a certain level of control to the whole IT aspect.   It’s not that anyone distrust IT personnel or their methods, it’s simply that (as is often the case) some form of an agreement must exist between IT, those in charge making the decisions, and of course, accounting.  In this way, SLM functions like a living constitution for any business.

Organization is also something that service level management is great at fostering.  As the level of technological involvement practiced by the average business steadily increases, the need for more comprehensive management measures in IT will become much more evident.  Service Level Management is one of the only controlling methods that is truly capable of keeping all IT assets in order so that business can be carried out on-site and/or via the web.

Service Level Management training

The Art of Service has a comprehensive offering of education solutions including Service Level Management training geared toward the busy IT professional. AOS instructors are experienced in classroom-style delivery, boardroom-style executive coaching, on-the-job training and online virtual support for remote students.

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Free SCJP 1.5 Exams Papers  Your Ticket to the SCJP Exam

It seems like almost everyone who are Sun Certified Java Professional (SCJP) hopefuls wants the easiest way out in passing the latest certification exam, which is SCJP 1.5 or SCJP 5.0. Well come to think of it, who does not want to get a high paying job and be included on the roster of Sun Certified Professionals (SCP)? Everyone does. Because of this, a lot of techniques were developed to make things easier for SCJP wannabes in passing the certification such as creation of review books, exam simulators and tutorials. Another way is to get a free SCJP 1.5 exam paper on various web sites to determine your readiness in stepping up to the challenge of taking the SCJP certification exam proper.

It is indeed a good strategy to practice free SCJP 1.5 exam papers. It functions as if you are taking a mock test within a specific time frame. These exam papers can also be treated as review papers as the actual SCJP 1.5 exam will cover from declarations and access control, to threads and JDK tools. An actual exam also consists of 72 questions that should be answered by the candidate in exactly 175 minutes. That is approximately 2 minutes and 20 seconds that a candidate can try to answer each question. Not that bad actually.

Though these free exam papers were not authorized by Sun, it is still a must to make of use of these for your advantage. Who knows? You might be surprised that the actual tests given to you have the same content as the free exam paper that you have downloaded. Let us just say that this is a one in a million case of readiness sprinkled with luck at the same time.

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Service Level Management and SLA working together

SLA + SLM (Service Level Agreement & Service Level Management)
A brief explanation of how these two fundamental concepts function together and how they can establish a better IT solution (for servicing business agendas).

A symbiotic relationship is one where two or more parties / entities share resources and / or rely on each other for survival or operations.   A good example of a symbiotic relationship would be the microscopic life-forms which resides in the human digestive system, without them, we couldn’t break down food in the way that we do.  In effect, our survival is dependent on the duties these tiny organisms perform.

You’re probably wondering what this has to do with service level management (SLM) or a Service level agreement (SLA), right?    If you haven’t already made the connection; the relationship between SLM and a SLA is essentially a symbiotic one.  For example, service level management procedures cannot be instituted without first establishing a service level agreement (which is to serve as the blueprint of sorts).  By the same token, a service level agreement is simply an outline of goals, inventory of assets, accord between parties, and a series of strategies for carrying everything out.  Like service level management however, a service level agreement cannot be instituted without the assistance of (in this case) SLM.  This is because service level management is actually the active entity responsible for instituting any SLA policies.

In many cases, the same individuals that are ultimately going to be responsible for performing the duties of the service level management are going to actually craft the service level agreement.  In fact, it would be considered odd at this point if the proposed (or current) service level manager didn’t participate in the design of their organization’s SLA.   This is because a quality service level manager is an individual that is often highly skilled, qualified, and experienced; meaning, they should have intimate knowledge about what actually works and what doesn’t.

Of course one should also keep in mind that not every situation is the same.   There’s a surprising amount of deviation and diversity present when you look at all IT departments as a whole.  Sure, they may be operating on similar principles, certifications, and systems, but everything becomes much more complex when you factor software and application into the mix.  This is just one example of why a designated service level manager must be extremely able.   After all, their parent organization(s) is depending on them to not only keep their IT systems up and running, but also to assist in devising ways of utilizing available technological assets to actually begin fulfilling “big picture” business goals and generating profits.

Anything that’s immediately relevant to current operations, goals, projects and/or aspirations will be included in a comprehensive service level agreement.  Care is also taken to explore those items / events which have the potential to become relevant in the future.

The main concern of any service level agreement is to create strategies and contingencies for every aspect in the operation of IT assets.   This is valuable not only for those directly participating in the monitoring and maintenance of IT systems, but also to the people who are involved the decision making processes of the business (or the business that an IT organization is servicing).

Things become even more crucial when you factor in that many of today’s businesses are utilizing IT in exciting new ways.  They are essentially treating IT as another department for generating profits.  This is in sharp contrast to the way IT previously functioned, which was mostly in a maintenance capacity.  Why are business leaders interested in IT as money maker, in and of itself?  It’s largely because today’s public is trending toward utilizing web services.

Almost every type of business organization these days is employing some form of internal and external web service(s).  (Internal meaning, for in-house operations and external meaning, services that customers might use).    However, an organization can’t assess their IT goals or ensure continuous operations without SLA and SLM, respectively.  Likewise, it would be nearly impossible for even the most intrepid, intelligent and daring service level manager to single-handedly formulate a strategy for achieving their bosses’ business goals while also having no idea of what might be required (hardware, software and personnel) to actually achieve them.  What SLA actually does is provide a forum for allowing all involved parties (business and tech-related) opportunity to raise their concerns and add their desires to the fold.  These ideas are then used to formulate strategies and identify components for executing them.

Service level management and a comprehensive service level agreement are the only two components needed to build a bridge between the desires of an organization and what they’re actually capable of accomplishing.  These two revolutionary concepts in establishing, monitoring, maintaining and utilizing IT services are perfect for meeting the requirements and challenges facing the modern business.

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BIOS Virtualization: Is it Possible?

Whenever you integrate a device onto your computer system or install any software on it, you will need to make sure that the BIOS (the Boot Input Output System) is capable of recognizing and acknowledging the presence of any embedding that you perform on it.  The BIOS area is a crucial yet functional element that you can use.

When you launch your operating system on your computer system, it is the BIOS that calls on the attention of the operating system and in return the OS calls on the devices and any application that you have on the system. Imagine when the BIOS tries to load any application without the need to wait for the operating system to be launched?  Is this possible? Well, the answer is definite and absolute – Yes!

This kind of a technology is possible with the use of the BIOS Virtualization.  With the BIOS Virtualization, you are attempting to boot and load your computer system’s resources without the need for any operating system to do calling and supervising of these resources.  The virtualized BIOS will work as if it is the operating system that tries to manage and supervise every application software like your browser to be launched and be utilized without the presence of the real supervisor – the operating system. 

One of the pioneering companies that is able to develop and make this technology fully utilized is the Phoenix Software Solutions.  This company tries to envision a technology where at least 15 to 20 applications are capable of being executed and launched inside the virtual BIOS without the interference of the operating system. 

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How Copies of Foundation Exams Can Make A Difference in Your Prince2 Certification?

Do you want to know the easiest way to pass the Prince2 Foundation certification exam? Then you may want to search for copies of Prince2 Foundation exam questions that can be downloaded from the internet. Though there is no assurance that these questions will be given again on the next exam, still it is worth a shot to find answers to these questions. This may also act as a form of a review for you. There are a lot of web sites that offer such downloadables, either for free or for a premium fee that is reasonable enough for delegates on a tight budget. It would be advantageous if you will do this as a group to lessen the load of uncovering the answers to certain challenging questions.

This has always been an issue to some since they claim that this is a sort of cheating. Well maybe it is if you will bring it with you during the exam and peep on some answers. If not, then it could just be a form of a resource material that you can take advantage of during training. However, it is not good to rely only to these exam copies in passing the exam. Candidates should still have to work their butts off in understanding the concepts and processes behind Prince2 to prepare them on taking bigger project support roles in the future.

There is nothing wrong on being resourceful. Checking on some web sites that could give you review materials before the exam is a plus on your part. Who knows? You might be surprised that the first question on the actual exam happens to be one of the questions that you have reviewed. 

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What are Service Level Management Critical Success Factors

Examples of CSF (critical success factors) in service level management

In order to claim progress in any endeavor (from a scientific perspective) one has to be able to present evidence clearly showing that positive effects are being produced.   This is often done in many situations by demonstrating some particular action’s beneficial residual effect on adjacent, related or connected components.  In service level management CSF (critical success factors) are among the most obvious watermarks one can use to gauge overall effectiveness of the practice itself. 

But just what are critical success factors, and do they pertain to?     Critical success factors (in SLM) are basically benchmarks in several categories that must be met in order to ensure that IT is not only fulfilling its duties to its constituency, but also working toward realizing the larger business goals of the parent organization.   Service level management itself is a bit of a departure from established IT duties, but it is a necessary process.   This is largely due to the fact that modern businesses are increasingly relying upon the services of their IT departments to not only run their organization internally, but to also generate additional profits and/or interface with the public at large.  All of this adds up to the fact that we have already entered into an era in which a new form of business is emerging, one in which web services are becoming vital components in profit generation / retention.  What critical success factors actually seek to do is essentially make sure that the needs of clientele are being met and that the system itself is being constantly monitored for stability.

What are some specific instances of Critical Success Factors in SLM?
There are a number of critical success factors for service level management which are fairly obvious and must be taken into consideration if long term success is to be achieved.  Arguably, the biggest CSF with regards to SLM is probably ability to meet the demands of an established service level agreement.  (For those that might be unaware; a service level agreement, or SLA, is a set of pre-agreed upon boundaries and logistics that are negotiated and set up by an IT division.  The desires outlined in any SLA are meant to reinforce the business concepts and aspirations of the parent organization and provide an organized, detailed and reasonable plan for achieving them.)  At its heart, the SLA is meant to simply align the goals of any business with the processes and resources of its IT department.

It is also important that an IT department and service manager be able to present their services in a way that is both cost effective to their entire company/organization as well as the customers they might be interfacing with.  For many businesses the web services provided by IT are meant to assist in profit generation, this should always be taken into consideration. 

The most obvious CSF for service level management is probably the ability of IT to actually provide services that are meeting the needs of their parent organization’s customer base.  Through judicial application of SLM, many organizations are beginning to interface with their IT managers on business grounds, not just technical ones.  For many individuals in upper management, service level management is a way of assigning complex and crucial tasks to those in their IT departments who have the tools and experience to complete them.
Service Level Management Certification
Having a solid strategy in place that also allows an IT division to keep their entire system under constant surveillance is also a well recognized critical success factor.  This also goes hand in hand with the concept of cost effectiveness; after all, how can you generate profit if the system isn’t operational?  This is also true of the level(s) of IT standards and compliance present at any given time.  As a general rule, those IT organizations that are more in line with established standards for IT quality are much more likely to keep their system fully operational (for a longer duration of time with no mishaps), thereby assisting in profit generation.

It is also important that an IT organization engaging service level management practices attempt to foster an IT service society.  This not only engenders employees to participate more fully in their duties and engage in creative decision making, but also to maintain long term stability.

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When service level management and industry-wide IT standards collide…

When service level management and industry-wide IT standards collide…

For years, IT had languished in the obscurity, separated from the actual decisions and processes that drive businesses.  Up until several years ago, most organizations simply saw their IT department as a group of individuals that would service their computers or network if it there were any problems.  That’s right people; IT used to be a maintenance position in most companies.  However, things are different now, because even megalithic businesses are becoming increasingly dependent on items like web services and sales.  In other words, technology is starting to take center stage alongside conventional business processes and logic.  This of course, is what service level management is all about; it provides IT with the tools and acumen to perform alongside traditional business concepts.
What’s service level management supposed to achieve?   First off, whenever a company or IT –intensive organization decides to adopt a system of service level management they start by taking inventory of their current assets.  This would include all IT assets internal and external, on-site and off-site.  Then, a service level agreement (SLA) would be constructed, which is meant to perfectly align the goals, desires, aspirations, and realities of any business with that of its supporting IT department.  From a technical point of view, a SLA must take technological advancements (over a certain amount of time) into consideration as well.  This is largely because technological change is very rapid in our society and a new advancement tomorrow may be able to cut or completely eliminate costs in another area, meaning the company itself saves or profits.  It should be noted however that service level management should not be used as an organizational or control tool by upper management per se, it is only a way to demonstrate to how certain technologies can be used to non-technical individuals (in a boardroom meeting, for example).
Service Level Management Certification
A service level manager has a very intensive set of responsibilities.  They have to not only constantly monitor the entire system that they’re responsible for, and make sure it’s assisting in profit retention / generation, but they also have to keep track of their IT employees, ensuring that they’re on task as well.   The bottom line is that being a service level manager is a very difficult job, and requires a keen intellect, as well as experience, leadership, business knowledge, and instincts. 

But what about industry standards in IT, how would these assist or conflict with service level management?  In most cases, service level management will be in perfect alignment / agreement with any and all industry-wide standards (with regards to IT).  Management of, and/or implementation of, 3rd party services / applications / vendors however, might not adhere to current (industry-wide) IT standards that are in place.  Another glaring problem is the fact that service level management is often so “cutting-edge” that it may be months or even years before standardized IT literature catches up.  To put it simply, an organization uses industry standard IT protocols to get their system up and running in peak condition, but service level management is a method for breaking new ground or utilizing known IT assets in an unexpected manner.

In reality however, the established IT standards always catch up and implement new developments, it just takes time.  Until a fairly detailed cross section of the many typical uses for service level management have been studied, catalogued, tested, and refined, there may be missteps between what we would refer to as, “industry-wide standards” and current business technologies.  One (hypothetical) possible problem area is that of certification.  If a company implements a highly successful and profitable set of (their own) standards in service level management, they might lose their ITIL (or similar) certification.    Of course most organizations will opt for the profits over certification every single time, but not if they are reliant on their certification for attracting new clientele or for boosting their company’s reputation / visibility.  Hopefully, the certifications and standards gatekeepers will take items like service level management (which is a golden opportunity for a lot of businesses) into consideration before they flatly suspend compliances with industry-wide standards and/or certification proceedings.

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KPI for Service Level Management

Examining KPI (key performance indicators) in service level management

Anyone that’s intimately familiar with any type of management effort (even outside the area of technology) is surely familiar with the concept of KPI or key performance indicators.  They (KPI) are the benchmarks that measure how successful and type of action or deployment actually is.   With regards to service level management, there are various key performance indicators that one can use to evaluate ongoing IT operations.   KPI’s should be referenced on an ongoing and continual basis in order to ensure that standards and goals are being met and/or addressed properly.  While the concept of using key performance indicators in such a manner is a relatively simple idea to grasp, it is slightly more difficult to put it into action. 

One of the central players in both service level management as well as identifying KPI’s is a service level agreement (SLA).   The service level agreement is akin to a blueprint which covers all the details associated with the management, monitoring, assessment, and utilization of any particular organization’s IT assets.  Through the establishment of a comprehensive SLA, a realistic strategy for SLM can be determined and instituted.

What are some examples of Key Performance Indicators in service level management?
According to ITIL ® (or Information Technology Infrastructure Library), which is a recognized authority in IT practices, methods, regulations and standards, there are a number of key performance indicators to consider with regards to service level management.   These KPI’s mostly deal with how well an IT organization is meeting the goals and requirements laid out in their clients’ SLA.

Because the goals and objectives present in the service level agreement are so clearly stated it is fairly easy to collect key performance indicators.  These include items like; the actual number of SLA-related issues that have been reported over a specific period of time, as well as how many SLA’s need to be / have been renegotiated or might require alterations.  Other obvious KPI’s to take note of are how clientele requirements are being met in terms of both specific requests, and overall satisfaction.
Service Level Management Certification
These combined key performance indicators should be in alignment with what are known as critical success factors (shortened to CSF).   In service level management, a person’s overall success can be measured by their ability to meet or exceed these CSF’s.  Aside from actually giving your customers what they’re paying you for, devotion to established service levels and the ability to supply cost-effective services is an absolute must.   It is imperative that an organization meet any and all relevant industry-wide standards. 

Individuals have long been using KPI’s to structure workflows, establish expected duties and outline how well business objectives are being met, this is not news.  But, it should be noted that consistently failing to meet key performance indicators is most likely a sure sign that there is some miscommunication, flaw or unforeseen development which is unaccounted for in the active SLA.  In cases like this, a complete reevaluation of a service level agreement might be necessary; this is especially true if one is already managing a dedicated, dependable and ethical team of professionals.

What’s the point of utilizing and relying on Key Performance indicators to enhance service level management?
Despite the tendency of most IT managers to focus solely on the processes and functionality of their network and system, at the end of the day, the most important facet of service level management is meeting the demands of the business they’re servicing.  This applies to both situations where IT is simply another department in a larger organization as well as those that might offer independent 3rd party services.  The world is becoming increasingly dependent upon web assets, and businesses are certainly no exception to the rule in this regard.  In fact, those businesses which are unable to justify their IT budgets are essentially misusing the technology that they are in possession of.  To put is simply, adherence to service level management standards by way of key performance indicators is not only a great way to monetize one’s IT assets; it is the only way to do it effectively in the long term.

More information about Service Level Management and the use of KPIs can be found in our online store.

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Disaster Recovery Server SQL Is An Efficient Recovery Partner

Disaster recovery does not only come in the form of methods and processes requiring manpower. At these modern times, IT systems have also began using more high-tech methods to increase security and safety especially for database operations. Thus, the advent of disaster recovery server SQL began.

The disaster recovery server SQL can provide its clients with various options flexible enough to combine with other recovery methods. It provides the clients with these useful services.

Clustering – Disaster recovery server SQL enabled more than a couple of nodes to link together and share a common disk space. The active node is the one who will own the shared resources. This feature effectively protects your system from a server failure.

Database Backup – This feature is especially designed to protect the whole production environment in case the whole system meets a disaster.

The disaster recovery server SQL has a wide range of systems which hosts various database specified back up processes.

The complete database system backs up the entire system of the specified business area. In this mode, all files regardless of type and size are being backed up within the server SQL.

The differential backup system is in contrast with the above mentioned. This type of database backup system backs up only some specified portions of the concerned area. This system also requires lesser management since it only involves a limited amount of storage space.

The transactional log back-up makes changes possible pertaining to the log information of the transaction log created for the database. However, a model which operates under a simple system cannot maximize this feature.

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