Atlanta is Heating Up Again Thanks to a Surge in IT Opportunities

Georgia’s capital and premier city is gaining traction after the 2008 financial recession that left the city struggling to catch up in terms of growth. Their recovery in large part is due to their increasing presence within the technology industry. Microsoft, Worldpay, and Cardlytics among other big tech companies have set up their headquarters in the area. These corporations are reaping the benefits of low operation costs, tax breaks, and investment funding. 

The Fintech Explosion

Fintech is the focus of many of Atlanta based companies, both big and small. Fintech firms support online financial services and transactions. Alternative monetary systems like Bitcoin, Apple Pay, and Square are becoming more and more popular with consumers and businesses alike. Atlanta is at the forefront of such exchange currencies and payment processing, having even been dubbed “Transaction Alley.”

Business Incubators

Top notch tech-focused research facilities like Georgia Tech and Emory University can also be credited with the tech boom. Georgia Tech’s Venture Lab for example, helps students launch their own startups and has been an instrumental support program within the tech community. As a result, young talent is growing Atlanta’s population in groves. The U.S. Census Bureau recently credited them with the third most population spike out of all the other major cities, with about 5.8 million people now residing in the sprawling city.

Tech City

Those looking to compete for software developing, programming, and computer support roles will find plenty of employment opportunities. Atlanta has always gleamed the spotlight as a business mecca and powerhouse city. However, now it’s specifically shaping up to be its own brand of Silicon Valley. What sets it apart from other successful tech based cities is an affordable housing market, historic character, and southern charm; making it an ideal landscape for encouraging tech focused innovation. 

No matter which city your company calls home, Number8 can help your business connect to top tech talent. If you want to learn more about our consulting process and why we are the perfect offshore software development company to help you reach your company’s goals, then give us a call at (502) 890-7665 today!

Distracted at Work? 3 Simple Tricks to Get You Focused

tips for focusingIn the world of technology, distractions are everywhere. Pinging notifications have a way of popping up on our phones and computers, and then an hour later, we find ourselves trying to remember what it was we were doing in the first place. However, when it comes to staying focused at work, it’s just a matter of building good habits that will stand the test of time (or at least get you to the end of the work day). Here are a few tips for focusing amidst the mountain of emails and instant messages that are sure to come your way. 

3 Tips for Focusing At Work:

  1. Set specific goals.

Part of the reason we get distracted at all at work is that we are bored or overwhelmed by the task at hand. However, knowing your priorities and setting goals can help minimize any attempt at procrastination. One of the best tips for focusing is proper goal setting. Proper goal setting works best when you break down each goal into reasonable time blocked tasks. Outlining all the steps it will take to accomplish what you want and then giving yourself a time limit for each one will help motivate you to meet your potential and fulfill your deadlines. 

Make sure the goals you set are SMART; meaning they are specific, measurable, assignable, relevant, and timely. This will ensure that you aren’t overwhelming yourself or wasting time on unattainable projects. Also try tackling the hardest tasks at the beginning of the day when you’re most energized and have loads of time ahead of you, and save the more routine things on your to do list for the end of the day when you’re brain and attention span is winding down. This way you won’t be as stressed or pushed for time on an important project.

  1. Take breaks.

It’s important to step back every once in a while, and if you do so regularly, you’ll find yourself less prone to give into the little distractions that present themselves throughout the day because you’ve already taken a break. For example, after spending a period of time hard at work, try rewarding yourself by getting up and walking around, grabbing a cup of coffee, filling up your water bottle, or even eating a mid afternoon treat. You can control the temptation to constantly check emails, social media, and text messages by setting aside a specific about of time in your workday for it. Catch up with your peers during lunch, so you don’t find yourself chitchatting at your desk instead of working. It also helps if your work space is somewhat enjoyable. So if you can, listen to background music to pump you up or keep your brain relaxed.

  1. Regulate technology.

When you’re in the office, why not make your devices work for you? Take advantage of the many apps out there that can track your time spent on certain sites, and even block those that you are prone to linger on for too long like YouTube or Facebook. Additionally, consider disabling your phone by turning it on silent, or having calls go directly to voicemail so you’re not interrupted unnecessarily during work hours. Keeping any handheld devices in your bag, or face down on your desk so you can’t see if the screen lights up, will also help prevent you from being pulled off track.

At Number8, we believe one of the keys to achieving your business’s goals is great IT that supports your company. We help businesses access great IT by connecting them with remote workers that utilize best-practice tools and processes. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page!

Nashville, TN: A Big Surprise in the Growing IT Sector

With the Grand Ole Opry at the heart of downtown, Nashville Tennessee is famously known for being the music capital of the U.S. The city is also rich in tourism and entertainment, and has quite the trendy restaurant scene and nightlife. However, what may come as a surprise to many, is it’s recent claim to fame as a hotspot for the IT community. Information Technology is currently rising up the ranks as one the leading industries in the area and Nashville now ranks second in the country for overall job growth.

Educational Opportunities

It’s easy to see why those just now entering the field are flocking to the city for job prospects. For those pursuing an education in computer science, there are a plethora of programs available including the nonprofit Nashville Software School; which was one of the first coding schools in the region.

Living Accommodations

The city is also at the center of travel, boasting an international airport, with several main interstates intersecting it. Real estate is growing somewhat quickly as well in order to accommodate the ever increasing population. As a result, there are many revitalized neighborhoods and a healthy mix of suburban and urban life with an affordable cost of living.

Economic Revitalization

Because local business is booming, Nashville’s market is one in which fosters entrepreneurship and is ripe with tech startups. While this means Nashville is somewhat redefining their southern image, they are still a hospitable community in terms of tech culture and provide many opportunities for networking within the programming industry. The demand for software developers and computer system design is certainly present. It seems upcoming IT talent can find not only careers that encourage creative ingenuity, but a high quality of life as a resident of the city itself.

No matter which city your company calls home, Number8 can help your business connect to top tech talent. If you want to learn more about our consulting process and why we are the perfect offshore software development company to help you reach your company’s goals, then give us a call at (502) 890-7665 today!

10 Ways to Stay On Top of Reputation Management as a CEO

reputation managementThe internet is an incredible resource for finding out just about anything you could ever want to know. As a CEO, you should really consider how that level of resourcefulness could affect your business. Potential clients use search and social media as tools to gather information regarding your brand and its reputation. So ask yourself — what does the internet say about your company Fortunately, you can have a say regarding your online reputation and how it looks to potential customers and clients. Here are just some of the ways you can stay on top of your company’s reputation management as a CEO.

Ten Tips to Achieve Excellent Reputation Management

1. Assess what you already have.

Unless your brand was born yesterday, chances are it already has somewhat of an internet presence. Do a cursory search to see what comes up for your business’s name as well as keywords you may be optimizing. Evaluate what you already have going right and which areas could be beefed up a bit.

2. Brand yourself.

It can’t hurt to own as many pages associated with your company’s name as possible. Beyond social media, look at business databases like Crunchbase and see if you can create a profile for your company there.

3. Use social media.

It’s not enough to have a Facebook and Twitter — you need to be actively posting. No need to go hog wild with minute-by-minute company updates. But every once and a while posting positive articles, blog posts, press releases, and industry-related news is a great way to be authentically active and show the world that your company is relevant.

4. Optimize your website.

If your company website is cluttered and slow, clients are going to assume the rest of your business runs that way. To optimize your site, clean up pages by removing unnecessary copy and organize them with clear page titles. You can also add things like meta tags and search phrases where applicable. Talk with a local SEO company about helping with this process if it is too outside of your wheelhouse.

5. Blog it up.

Your company’s blog is an untapped resource for keyword and search engine optimization. Creating appealing content that is relevant to your industry is a great way to tell search engines what your company is all about. It doesn’t need to be complex– in fact, it is better if it’s not. You want your content to be engaging and readable, not filled with technical jargon.

6. Read your reviews.

If your company already has reviews on sites like Google Business or Yelp, use them as a resource. Any complaints or doubts expressed by clients should be viewed as genuine feedback you can use to improve your business. If you see negative reviews, don’t fall into the trap of getting into online arguments. The best practice is to apologize and offer a better experience should they return to your business. Take the criticism, fix the mistake the best you can, and move forward knowing how to avoid it in the future.

7. Promote positive reviews.

Having an online review strategy doesn’t only have to be about responding to negativity. Clients with positive experiences are often more than happy to lend their two cents if you let them know how much it would mean to your business. You can even simplify the process by providing direct access to review sites through things like your online newsletter.

8. Follow guidelines.

People are always trying to cut corners and find the quickest way to get the results they want. When it comes to your business’s online reputation, that is not the right approach. Following guidelines shows search engines — not to mention clients — that you are serious about having an authentic, positive online reputation.

9. Reach out to influencers.

Influencers are journalists and bloggers that people trust when it comes to industry opinions. It is common practice for them to work with companies to help provide honest reviews for their audiences. Find out what influencers you want to work with and reach out to see if they are willing to work with your brand.

10. Be patient.

When it comes to online reputation management, slow and steady wins the race. You may be putting in hours, days, or even months of work before you see the kind of results you want. Don’t be discouraged. Your online reputation can take years to build, but only seconds to ruin. Taking your time and being patient ensures you don’t make boneheaded mistakes that can undo all the good work you put in.

At Number8, we believe one of the keys to a positive business reputation is great IT that supports your company and offers reputation management services. We help businesses access great IT by connecting them with remote workers that utilize best-practice tools and processes. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page!

10 Benefits of Hiring Nearshore Software Developers

nearshore software developersIf your technology company is growing faster than those you have on deck can handle, chances are you are considering offshore development to help with the workload. Finding offshore talent allows you to hire skilled developers that can handle the nitty gritty aspects of projects so you and your team can focus on the big picture. However, many people find that offshore development isn’t exactly what they hoped for when they hire people on the other side of the world. Successful product development relies on communication. Huge gaps in time zones, language barriers, and other factors hinder productive communication and, in turn, your project’s overall success. Thankfully, not all offshore development has those snags. You can get cost-efficient and effective results by working with nearshore software developers. Nearshore developers live in countries closer to where your business is located — such as Central and South America. Their proximity allows several benefits for you and your company.

Here are 10 great reasons you should hire nearshore software developers for your next product.

  1. You can scale your IT team as needed. While you may need developers now, you may not need them in a month or two. Hiring nearshore allows you to get the work you need, when you need it.
  2. Hiring nearshore developers saves you time. You can find qualified talent through an agency that builds the team for you, so you don’t have to go through the hiring process yourself.
  3. Nearshore workers are trained in the agile development methodology which allows them to find creative solutions that work.
  4. When hiring nearshore developers in Central America, you have less of a gap between time zones, so you and the outsourced team are working on similar timelines.
  5. Developers in Central America learn English early on and in the American dialect. This means less of a language barrier between supervisors and offshore developers.
  6. While hiring nearshore developers eliminates many of the obstacles that come with offshore, it is still more cost efficient than searching for and hiring new talent onshore.
  7. Delegating development tasks provides onshore talent time to work on the big picture and create things that allow your company to stand out in the market.
  8. Nearshore developers share the responsibilities that come with product development. You agree upon a predetermined goal and they execute your vision.
  9. Places like Costa Rica and Honduras have rapidly growing technology sectors full of reliable talent.
  10. Reducing communication issues that normally come with offshore development helps improve your return on investment and bottom line.

More and more large companies like Amazon, Apple, and more are turning to nearshore development.

The benefits of hiring offshore developers who are in the same, or close to the same, time zone as an in-house team are vast. Nearshore developers can not only save your company time, but also money. By hiring nearshore developers for software development, your in-house team can focus on project management and client communications. They can also focus on developing new software ideas that the nearshore team can then make realities. Hiring nearshore software developers is becoming the work flow of the future. You won’t want to leave your company, and your team, behind.

At Number8, we find dynamic talent that work with your company for effective development. Our nearshore software developer are fully trained in agile product development. Our team can come up with creative solutions that will help your company succeed. If you’re interested in learning more about Number8 and what we do, give us a call at (502) 890-7665, or check out our information page here!