What is a “Personal Technology Consultant”?

sim_cardsI believe that certain individuals and small businesses need the services I offer. Successful and busy individuals want to establish a relationship with a trusted advisor whom they can call to address technological glitches quickly and effectively. For this reason I have added the adjective “personal” to my title –Personal Technology Consultant. Lots of people hang out the “consultant” shingle. Lots of “consultants” work exclusively with corporations or large businesses. I want to meet the needs of the successful entrepreneur, professional, start-up business, or individual, who desire the ease and effectiveness of a personalized service.

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Do you do everything?

I can successfully tackle many types of technological issues, but of course no one can do everything. I will assess your needs and refer you on if it does not seem that my skill set is the best fit for you.

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What if you can’t fix it?

Some things can’t be fixed and nothing is guaranteed. Just like a lawyer can’t guarantee the outcome of a trial I can’t guarantee a broken PDA or data loss incident can be recovered. What I can do, however, is guarantee my best effort and knowledge applied to the problem.

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What if I don’t know the first thing about cell phones or pc’s, but I want to set up a system in my house, or for my practice/business?

If you are fairly unknowledgeable about this whole area, then I am probably ‘your guy.’ I enjoy helping individuals choose a system that is right for them, setting it up, and maintaining and upgrading it. I don’t need to use lots of techno-lingo to get my point across. As proof of this fact, my mother-in-law thinks I’m terrific at explaining how her VCR works!

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How much do you cost?

Time is money. I can typically accomplish in an hour what it might take a lay person 4 hours to do. As a consultant, I also can’t bill the standard 40 hours a week that the typical salaried individual receives. It’s the nature of the business.

I have hourly rates for individuals and businesses with typical one hour minimums for my time. I can quote per project rates and retainer rates. We can discuss rates for ‘after hour calls’ if this is necessary.

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Do you have any professionals whom you work with more than others?

Because my wife is a psychologist I am quite familiar with the ethical codes of confidentiality, and even with ‘the dreaded’ HIPAA. I have established a detailed computer system for her, which has certainly improved her practice by making her more accessible to her clients, and maintaining her electronic records in a secure and HIPAA compliant manner. To date she has survived 2 hard drive crashes (one was caused by our 5 year old son), without losing a byte of data!

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Can you detail some examples of the types of systems you have designed?

I worked with a professional photographer and assisted him in the following ways:

  • Assisted with selection of the best PC for his professional needs, taking into account the massive amount of memory which is required by digital photography software systems (Adobe Photoshop)
  • Managed the ‘porting’ of his landline phone to a mobile phone in order to maintain a local presence once he had moved out of area
  • Upgraded and re-built two of his PCs following hard drive failures
  • Aided in the selection of his professionally-used mobile phone, which is now linked seamlessly to his PC system
  • Selected and set up the appropriate internet connectivity, given the local choices in his state
  • Established an email system which works both at his home office, and on job locations, using Microsoft Outlook on a home PC and a field-based laptop

For my wife I set up a professional system which takes into account the unique needs of professionals who must maintain the utmost level of confidentiality and security of records. (This type of system would probably also work well for other professionals, such as attorneys, dentists, and other allied healthcare professionals).

  • Selected a Blackberry which serves as her primary customer contact so that she can choose to respond to new callers immediately
  • Established an email system which can be accessed at any time, in real time, via her Blackberry.
  • Messages from her website are sent in real time to her Blackberry, allowing her to respond as soon as is feasible to new client inquiries
  • Security and client confidentiality is maintained at all times on her Blackberry and PC by having passwords installed on each
  • Developed a professional-grade computer data back-up system which is maintained at all times for client records. Detailed reports and records must be maintained for 7 years; back ups are mandatory. She never has to attend to this system at all, it is all done ‘automatically’ –aka, I maintain it
  • Installed Quicken so that she can easily and precisely manage client payments, invoices, and statements. This makes tax time a breeze!
  • Installed various assessment-specific software programs, such as the Woodcock-Johnson, BASC-2, and WIAT-II.

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What is a Wireless Concierge?

A Wireless Concierge is an emerging term that refers to a service which will manage device selection, procurement, setup, billing and on-going maintenance for your wireless service and device. There have been a few startups attempting to do this on a large scale but most have since ceased operations.

I can provide most of these types of services if this is what you’re looking for.

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