What is Crystal Reports and how can it benefit you?

Crystal Reports is the ultimate business intelligence application. Used to design and generate reports, Crystal Reports can work with a range of data sources, including Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, Oracle databases, Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Access databases, Business Objects Enterprise and Local file system information.

Value of Learning Crystal Reports

Crystal Reports’ design interface allows users to construct reports with the support of visual-based data. It helps transform data into meaningful information and increase an organization’s competitiveness because it helps identify and reduce operational costs and puts focus on specific performance measures. Its dynamic and interactive content helps users make better decisions every day.

Upcoming courses:

Crystal Reports 2013 Designer 2 Workshop (2 days): November 24-25, 2016 This two-day workshop is designed to enhance your basic report writing skills and move you into creating more complex reports. Time will be spent walking you through the tips and tricks of advanced report writing along with a good amount of hands on practice. In addition, you will cover professional design, techniques, sub-reporting and advanced formulas. This course incorporates a number of hands on exercises that reinforce the learning process. Prerequisite: Successful completion of the Designer 1 Workshop is strongly recommended.

Crystal Reports 2013 Designer 3 Workshop (2 days): January 10-11, 2017 This two-day workshop is designed to expand your working knowledge of Crystal Reports and move you into creating substantially more complex reports. Time will be spent walking you through the tips and tricks of advanced report writing along with a good amount of hands on practice. In addition, you will cover custom functions, advanced formulas and report efficiency techniques. This course incorporates a number of hands on exercises that reinforce the learning process. Prerequisite: Successful completing of the Designer 1 and 2 workshops is strongly recommended.

To register for classes, call Deb Perreault at 204-984-9897 or by email to: dperreault@broadviewnetworks.ca OR: simply click on the course title link above and Register Today!

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Cyber Security Professional Training

Cyber security professionals help prevent losses from cybercrime by preventing, detecting and responding to attacks. With so many security certifications available, it can be hard to know what security is the right fit for your current skills, your future goals and your own personal interests.

At Broadview Networks, we offer classes that help lead to certifications for CompTIA Security+, Microsoft MTA Security. But which one is right for you?

CompTIA Security+
If your job includes securing networks services, devices and traffic at an organization, the CompTIA Security+ might be a good fit for you. In Broadview Networks’ security+ course, you’ll build on your existing knowledge of security fundamentals, networks and organizational security. In addition, you’ll acquire specific skills required to implement security systems and services on any type of computer network.

Microsoft MTA Security
Of you’re an information security specialist hoping to learn and validate fundamental security concepts as well as a focus on security layers, authentication, authorization, and accounting, the Microsoft MTA security course with Broadview might be a good fit. Participants will become familiar with security policies, network security, and how to protect both a server and a client.

We also offer information security training from our vendor Digital Boundary Group

Hardening Windows Networks
October 18-21 2016 (CISSP accredited)

Whether you’re a long-time cyber security professional or newcomer who need a broader base of knowledge to become more specialized, Broadview Networks in partnership with Digital Boundary Group has a course for you!


How do SA Training Vouchers work?

Broadview Networks can help you make the most of your Microsoft Software Assurance Membership and you can redeem your SA Vouchers with us for Microsoft IT Professional and developer training courses.

Broadview offers you the latest Microsoft Official instructor-led courses – giving you the competitive advantage you need.  Make sure you’re making the most of your Microsoft software, by taking advantage of the SA training offer.

How do SA Training Vouchers work? Businesses qualify for a certain number of free training days, based on the type and number of licenses purchased with Microsoft Software Assurance.

How to Activate, Create & Assign and Schedule Training

Here is a link to watch an informative Video demonstrating how to Activate, Create & Assign, and Schedule Training at:



Activate: You must go to Microsoft’s Volume Licensing Service Center (“VLSC”) web site at: https://www.microsoft.com/licensing/servicecenter/default.aspx

to activate your organization’s SA training voucher benefit. The benefit only has to be activated one time, and the entire number of training days allotted to the organization will be activated for use.

Create & Assign: After activating the benefit, you can create and assign SA training vouchers to employees by entering the employee name, corporate e-mail address, and number of days the voucher is worth. After creation and assignment of a SA training voucher, the employee has 180 days to use the voucher before it expires.

Schedule: Employees can choose Broadview Networks who offers the courses they want to take.  To reserve training, employees must provide Broadview Networks with the SA training voucher details found in their voucher confirmation email.


IT Pro Tip: One thing you must be aware of when upgrading to Office 2016

The time has come. You’ve read the information, you’ve had the conversations, you’ve crossed the last t and dotted the last i. It’s time to upgrade to Office 2016!

You’re halfway through the installation process when you get the following message:

“We need to remove some older apps. Some older apps don’t work with Office 2016. Before installing the new Office, we need to remove:…”

You may find previous versions (2013 or earlier) of applications like OneDrive for Business or Visio no longer work with Office 2016. But not to worry! Microsoft is working on the problem and, in the meantime, have offered a couple simple workarounds.

Option 1: Call Microsoft…

…or let a Microsoft partner like Broadview Networks take care of you. Office 2016 is all about being streamlined and easy-to-use, a solution can always be found.

Whether it be an upgrade to newer versions of the app, or even another option for a program that may add more value for your business, step one is always to talk to the source: we’re here to help!

Option 2: Use a workaround

Microsoft has created an official workaround that essentially creates a custom installation of Office 2016 for issues with OneDrive for Business. Working with a Microsoft partner will ensure that this fix is deployed quickly and easily.

Want to know more about upgrading to the powerful Office 2016? Call (204) 984-9897, or email solutions@broadviewnetworks.ca.


IT Tip: What is HaaS, and how can it benefit you?

We do love our acronyms in IT: OS (Operating System), PHP (Hypertext Preprocessor), MCSE (Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert)…but what about HaaS?

You may be slightly more familiar with SaaS – Software as a Service, sometimes called on-demand software. It’s the software licensing and delivery model in which your business gets software on a subscription basis over a network, and your managed services partner takes care of central hosting.

HaaS is a similar concept. It stands for, as you may have guessed, Hardware as a Service. In this model, your managed services partner owns hardware that’s then installed on your site. For a low monthly fee, you get access to hardware, along with installation, monitoring, and maintenance that suits your needs.

How does it add value?

As a small- to medium-sized business, HaaS can be incredibly beneficial for you and your organization.

Fiscally, it can be very cost-effective. For one monthly fee, built directly into your managed services contract, your hardware concerns are taken care of. Not sure if that state-of-the-art piece is going to work out? No need to spend thousands, with HaaS you can use hardware only so long as it works well for your needs.

In terms of work and expertise, it takes care of warranty and what-do-I-buy woes. Because the hardware is built into a larger managed service offering, your partner can tailor it to your specific needs. When it comes time to switch, there’s no need for you to worry about how to get rid of old hardware and install upgrades; your managed service provider will take care of it for you.

Want to know more about Hardware as a Service or Broadview Networks’ Complete View offerings? Call (204) 984-9897 or email solutions@broadviewnetworks.ca.


IT Tip: Public or Private Cloud – Which is Best for Your Business?

When considering infrastructure models for cloud services, there are three options: public cloud, private cloud, or a hybrid cloud computing environment. But which service adds the most value to your organization?

Private Cloud

A private cloud hosting environment resides on your company’s intranet or hosted data center. All your data is protected behind a firewall, and all management, maintenance, and updating is the responsibility of your team.

If you already have extensive data centers, this is a fantastic option, as you can use your current infrastructure. Private cloud environment are also more secure, in general, and share fewer resources with other organizations.

Public Cloud

Instead of being hosted on-site, a public cloud environment hosts your data in the provider’s data center. A third party is responsible for management and maintenance, and the solution is easily scalable.

A public cloud reduces time and cost when it comes to testing and deploying products, and all data remains separate from others. However, some feel less secure, as a third party provider is in control of security (though instances of security breach are rare).

Hybrid Cloud

Not sure if all your applications and hardware are compatible with the cloud? Do you have certain systems that need a secure environment, with others that require scalability or affordability? Hybrid cloud environments allow for integration of some cloud offerings, without completely deviating from your current private environment.

The Bottom Line

When moving to a cloud environment, fully or partially, be sure to consider all the pros and cons of private, public, and hybrid. The cloud isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution; rather, it allows for specific creation of ideal environments based on your organizational needs.

Want to talk more about which cloud environment can add the most value to your organization? Call Broadview Networks to talk about Cloudview Solutions at (204) 984-9897, or email solutions@broadviewnetworks.ca.


IT Pro Tip: A Clear Roadmap for Launching Lean IT

Lean IT provides principles, methods, and tools to help you balance demands for information, functionality, accuracy, and efficiency. The next step is a clear roadmap of the exact steps needed to successfully launch a Lean IT initiative.

The webinar below was offered by the Lean IT institute, and goes over the sequence of steps needed to engage people, change behaviour, and create measurable results.


Flash Feature Focus: How does workplace skills training provide value?

When it comes to training for employees, many tend to think in terms of specific technology: a new piece of hardware or software imperative to the performance of the job and overall business value. While this type of training is important, boosting other important workplace skills can bolster the bottom line just as much.

Employees are increasingly expected to have strong skills in areas such as numeracy, literacy, interpersonal skills, etc. Investment and support from companies ensures employee skills are where they need to be to do the absolute best job they can.

Workplace Skills and Return on Investment

It’s wonderful to support and encourage employees, but not at the cost of positive ROI. A 2014 study found an average 25 per cent return on investment for training programs. Some companies who participated reported returns of 300 per cent.

From customer satisfaction to productivity gains and quality assurance, training employees on more than technical skills adds value and opportunity. What’s more, in 2013, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development found literacy scores significantly below average, and numeracy skills just at average, which can diminish business value if not addressed.

For more information on how workplace skills training can help you in your career or business, call our Training Consultant Deb Perreault at (204) 984-9897, or email solutions@broadviewnetworks.ca.


IT Tip from Deb: What Data Would You Like?

A few weeks ago, I received an email from Amazon with my Data.  They sent me a fascinating report of the music that I listened to over the past year – to include the artists, songs and albums I’d purchased.  I was surprised by some of the data and was actually motivated to expand my music selection into other music genres that appeared to be quite low on my “report card”.  In other words, my personalized Amazon data gave me a very useful feedback perspective to help me shape my future music selections.

It also allowed me to see that other customers who liked my same music were purchasing the artists’ newest releases.  This prompted me to expand my existing music collection by purchasing the new releases while taking advantage of Amazon’s special price offer and with ease to the Shopping cart!

On January 27, I attended a Microsoft Power BI Lunch & Learn at Broadview Networks and I was surprised to see so many of our customers in attendance.  I guess everyone is looking for how to best capture Big Data analytics from a value perspective these days!

What I learned is there is a need for “analytical” skills from the end-user level and Microsoft Power BI allows for this.  There are at least two things required in dealing with big data.  The first is to “find and query” the data.  The second, to interpret your findings.

So, tell me what would a Learning Data Snapshot look like? Imagine a process that would give each learner a snapshot of the data surrounding their learning activities.  I would love to see how I spent my learning time by media mix, for example:  % of learning time using video, text, structured e-Learning and e-learning abandonment, social collaboration, classroom, etc.  I would love to see data on my patterns of completion or non-completion of learning resources.  And, my list begins to grow.

In the past 2 years, we have seen the growth of Big Data and we have seen organizations increasingly gather Bigger Data Sets on learning.  However, we have not seen the growth, yet, of Learning Snapshots, that provide feedback, trending and analysis for a learner of their own learning approaches/behaviors – and even comparison with peers.

Microsoft’s Power BI tools will work best when there is a mutual sense of value.  I love getting an annual summary from American Express of my spending, including trends that provide feedback on expenditures.

So, what would YOUR Learning Snapshot look like? What are a few of the data sets that you would love to see on a future Learner Data Snapshot?

If you could take a couple of minutes and send me a sentence or two with your ideas to Deb@broadviewnetworks.ca.  We will be working on this topic and offering business intelligence learning events over the next few months and will gladly share a summary of responses with the learning community.

For details for how Microsoft Power BI can help you, please call me or your Account Manager at 204.984.9897.

Yours in learning,
Deb Perreault
Training Consultant


Lean IT – How Skinny Can We Be?

In today’s IT landscape, there are continuous demands for CIOs to cut waste and cost from the IT Service Management delivery process. This is where Lean IT can help extract value. We live in a time where processes themselves do not only need be effective, but cost effective as well. Is what we do really necessary? What can be minimalized? Applying lean principles will not only “cut the fat”, but strike a balance for continuous service improvement.

Lean IT Association Foundation Training & Certification

Course Description:

IT organizations are constantly seeking new ways to improve customer satisfaction, service quality and value for the business. Lean IT is applied to transform your IT organization to a customer-focused, efficient and transparent IT organization that can deliver sustainable results to the business.

The Lean IT Association Foundation training covers all elements to introduce you to Lean IT. After completion of the training, you will be able to participate effectively in a Lean IT transformation program.

Course and Learning Objectives:

At the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • Understand the concepts behind Lean and how Lean can be applied in IT
  • Analyze customer value and translate the voice of the customer to processes
  • Understand Lean concepts as customer value, value streams, flow, pull, perfection
  • Diagnose and improve processes with value stream mapping
  • Problem solving with the Kaizen approach
  • Work with the DMAIC improvement cycle
  • Designate improvement activities that improve process results
  • Understand what behaviors & attitudes are essential within Lean organizations
  • Prepare the student to take the Lean IT Association Foundation Certification exam

Delivery: Classroom delivery

Quint Training Delivery Partner (ATO): Quint is a founding member of the Lean IT Association.

Course Approach:

The Lean IT Association Foundation Training is two days. During the training, you will learn the fundamentals of Lean and how to apply Lean in an IT domain. In the training you will practice with exercises to build hands-on skills. The training will introduce you to the softer aspects of Lean IT like change approaches and how to change people’s behavior and attitude. All the exercises are related to ICT, but no technical IT knowledge is required.

This course is delivered using an exciting case study designed to further enhance the candidates understanding of Lean IT. Students who have attended this course are prepared to successfully take the associated Lean IT Association Foundation certification exam which is a requirement for attending any of the further Lean courses available in this track.

Course Student Material:

Students will receive a Lean IT Association Foundation classroom workbook containing all of the presentation materials, the case study, the book Lean Thinking and sample exam questions.

Reference Materials:

Lean Thinking, Womack & Jones.


There are no pre-requisites for this course, although a basic knowledge of IT concepts will be helpful.

Target Audience:

Any member of an IT organization.

Training Fees: $1,800 CDN plus 5% GST

Course Dates: January 27-28, 2016 and February 23-24, 2016

To Learn More and to Register, please call Deb Perreault at 204-984-9897 or email Deb@broadviewnetworks.ca