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What Could Your Company Do with a Web Application?

As industry becomes more reliant on connectivity, business needs and those of employees and customers are also evolving. Along with this evolution, web-based database applications have become the medium for the next century.

AppStorm describes a web app as an application utilizing web and [web] browser technologies to accomplish one or more tasks over a network, typically through a [web] browser. More specifically, an app utilizes computer software designed to help the user to perform singular or multiple related specific tasks, using Web technologies like Flash, Silverlight, JavaScript, HTML & CSS, Java, various other programming languages and other computer technology intended for the use across networks.

How can a web app provide more functionality and customization to your business? 

·      Compatibility: Unlike many desktop or smartphone applications, web-based choices are far more compatible, regardless of platform. The customer can access the app via web browser, usually without installing additional software. making your audience far wider than it might otherwise be.

·      Scalability: The world of business is changing fast, and so is the size of your company. It’s tough to predict where you’ll be and when you’ll get there, which makes scalability essential. You need a system that can grow and change with your company, and custom web applications can do just that.

·      Everything You Need, Nothing You Don’t: When you’re dealing with an off-the-shelf solution, you’re getting lots of things that may not match your specifications. Custom web application design means your needs are the primary consideration from day one of project development. The entire application is built to meet your needs, and that means you’re going to have something that does exactly what you demand from the moment it is released.

·      Time Savings: Imagine automating a vital yet time-consuming process – what could you do with the time you save? Custom web apps offer the ability to change your company’s daily tasks, increasing your company’s productivity and efficiency with a single web application.

·      Financial Savings: Automation of your business processes or tasks will provide you with substantial financial benefits in the long run.

While the idea of customization may sound daunting to the owner of a smaller business, a web app specifically designed with your business needs in mind can automate helpful and engaging tasks, like alerting customers of new product releases or price changes, forwarding web-generated leads to sales representatives, even conducting business any time, anywhere, in any language and currency, through any distribution channel.

A web application designed and developed by Kinetik I.T. will keep your employees and clients informed while building credibility. Many of our clients have experienced a measurable return on investment by implementing web-based solutions.

To see examples of custom-designed web apps and learn how they’ve helped several of our clients, please visit our online portfolio. 

Why Fixed Price is a Bad Idea in Software Development

As a professional Phoenix custom software design and development company we often take over custom software development projects after the relationship with a fixed-price software development company has turned sour. The fixed-price pricing model for software and web application development projects may sound attractive to a customer initially, but unfortunately, both parties will most likely suffer in the end.

A fixed-price contract happens when the customer is guaranteed a fixed price to complete certain tasks and/or provide specific variables. A fixed-price contract might also have a limit for expenses, in which case the customer cannot be billed for any amount over these limits. In any arrangement of this kind, the specifications must be complete and detailed and the contract must allow adjustments to the price for any variation to the agreed-upon specifications. 

The only fixed-bid software projects that have a chance of success are those which cover additional time, in the event the software development company has underestimated how long it will take to complete the project. Estimating is often the hardest part of any software development project. Estimating a project’s timeline is never an exact science, especially for custom projects which may entail unexpected needs and wants on the part of the client, leading to “scope creep”; or unforeseen technical issues that are often out of the control of the software developer, leading to spending additional time to provide a “work-around”.

In business, it can be difficult to agree ahead of time on the scope of an entire project, and determining the specific details of the software requirements and performance criteria is no different. Similar to custom building a home, the unexpected and unforeseen will often occur in the middle of the process. While software design specifications and features may be decided upon in advance, building the actual product, taking into account the high degree of detail necessary, and leaving little room for interpretation is very costly and not always a good use of the client's resources and money. 

At the end of the day, the most important consideration is the final product and its overall fit and performance.  When considering a fixed-bid contract, whether client or developer, ensuring a quality end product is paramount. 

For the client, fully understanding project needs and outcomes, and working with a trusted company can go a long way to ensuring a successful outcome. When working with a new developer, consider starting with a smaller project, a kind of test run to ensure compatibility before delivering a larger project – especially one that may entail a fixed-price agreement.

To learn more about services and products, and to stay up to date with Kinetik IT, visit or follow Kinetik on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.



Three Reasons to Create a Mobile Site Now

Statistics clearly state the case: nearly 100 million people use the mobile web daily, and smartphones are outselling PCs faster than ever. Transitioning to include your business site on the mobile web is a must.

So, how does your current website look on a mobile browser? If it’s not designed with optimized mobile settings, the aesthetic may not carry over well to a smaller, handheld device. Aside from a poor user experience, a sub-par mobile site can compromise the look, feel, and content of your company’s website, negating the time and money invested in developing thoughtful messaging and concise branding.

The simple fact is that, due to the limited amount of space and generally slower connection speeds, a mobile design needs to be both more simply designed and more task-based than the standard companion website.  Here are a few reasons to consider this shift to a mobile-optimized site – sooner rather than later:

  1. Appearance: Your site’s design probably does not look as good as you think it does. Mobile web emulators abound online, offering an easy way to view your site across devices. Type in your URL for a glimpse at what potential customers see – does it offer the user experience you’d like customers to have? If not, it’s time to develop a mobile site.
  2. Lagging behind: Chances are, your competitors already have a mobile site. Even if they were not early adopters, the biggest companies in every industry have a mobile site, and it’s a sure bet that your competitors are in that mix.
  3. Increased traffic: Mobile sites mean better SEO. Google is bent on ensuring searchers have the best possible experience, and while no one is saying exactly what that entails, it’s certain that mobile sites for mobile users factor in somewhere, so capturing those who are looking may mean you have to go mobile.

You need only look around – to see the multitudes using phones to read, shop, and research – to understand how necessary a mobile website is for today’s business. Kinetik IT has been offering Phoenix businesses web and I.T. solutions, including mobile sites, that will enhance profitability for years to come. To learn more about services and products, visit or follow Kinetik on Facebook, LinkedInor Twitter.



Implementing Your Disaster Recovery Plan

We have all heard stories about what’s lost during natural disasters – homes, businesses; in cities waterlogged during southern hurricanes, California and Colorado wildfires that consume entire communities. While major events like these, which cause millions of dollars in damage, occur on a limited basis, a different kind of disaster catches businesses by surprise every day: data loss. Seemingly mundane in comparison and you may think that the chance of this occurring may be relatively small, yet this type of disaster can have a huge impact on your business, resulting in loss of time, loss of productivity, revenue and, potentially, clients.

Data loss can occur in any number of ways including human error, computer virus, hardware or system failure, software corruption, data or cyber theft, as well as natural disasters. The remedy is to have a Disaster Recovery and Implementation Plan in place, to ensure data is adequately protected and can be recovered in a timely manner after the system breach.

Your disaster recovery plan is an important part of your business and the consequences of not having one can easily be underestimated. When disaster hits, the question is: Will you be ready?


A How-To Guide

Human beings tend to act like the proverbial ostrich-with-its-head-in-the-sand when it comes to preparing for unpleasant events. But when disaster strikes, regardless of the cause, the feeling of being able to recover data will offer peace of mind and allow you and your team to confidently move forward. What are the first steps you should take? Where do you turn? This quick overview can help.

  1. Choose responsible people. You cannot properly get your disaster recovery plan off the ground if you don’t have great people around you to help. As you build the actual plan, be sure you have responsible people in charge of the process.
  2. Upgrade regularly. Over time, your company is going to change. As it does, your disaster recovery plan has to change too. Be sure it’s updated as often as is necessary to keep up with your company.
  3. Get the right help. Planning for disaster recovery is not as simple as pulling a template off the internet. Instead, choose an IT consulting firm to help.

When you’re ready to get serious about disaster recovery planning, there is no better place to turn than Kinetik IT, where we’ll walk you through every step of disaster recovery planning.


To learn more about services and products – including implementing your tailored plan if and when it becomes necessary – visit or follow Kinetik on Facebook, LinkedInor Twitter.

The WHY of Creating Microsoft Access Solutions

At a time when so much information is stored in the cloud, and many companies  operate remotely, Microsoft Access may not be the first program to come to mind when thinking about database management. But in fact, Access is one of the most mature Microsoft products released in 1992. 

Microsoft Access is a powerful and useful information management tool which systematically stores information for reference, reporting, and analysis.  The way the data is organized allows for in-depth analysis, and management – far better than is possible with spreadsheet applications. More than just a list or table, a database is a formidable tool, allowing for relationships between tables and dictate which data is mandatory to be entered by the user and much more. This allows a user to easily retrieve, sort, analyze, and report data without compromise.

These points are moot, however, if a client doesn’t understand how a database can help them achieve their end results. When working with this type of client, start with the why.

If ten Access developers were asked what they do, the answer would, most likely, include several variations on this response: "I deliver custom business solutions for companies using Microsoft Access."

The above answer is correct – that’s technically what the developer does, and the how is by using Microsoft Access VBA. But what about the why? Why is it that they do what they do?

Data is the lifeblood that drives a company.Every company relies on accurate data to run their business. Without accurate data, there is no business. From orders, customers information,  to appointments, sales, inventory etc., it's all data and it's all vital in the operation of a business.

If data is the lifeblood of the business, a professional database development company can help by creating a solid database design and architecture which is the foundation of any database, ensuring integrity of the data. . Lack of data integrity has substantial consequences such as duplicate records, lost data, and orphaned records. Eventually lack of data integrity will affect your business operations. Access Developers are in a unique position to help business, from small to midsize using an amazing tool without parallel.

Thinking about the question again, a better answer would be something like this:

"Because data is one of a business’s most important assets, our passion is helping you protect and discover its power."

To learn more about services and products, and to stay up to date with Kinetik IT, visit or follow Kinetik on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.

Online Security Measures for Individuals

It often starts out small – a five-dollar purchase that shows up on in the bank statement, a strange email notification, a hacked social media account. Day in and day out, personal information is scattered around the web, in places you might not even realize. From broadcasting our location on Facebook and Foursquare, to extolling our professional credentials on LinkedIn, and expressing opinions on Twitter and Wordpress, our lives are more of an open book than ever before.  So how, as individuals, can we ensure our information is safe? Kinetik I.T. President Josette van Stiphout offers some suggestions. 

The most fundamental step, she explains, is making sure no one is spying on you. “For individuals, let's start with something simplistic – really making sure that your computer doesn't have spyware installed. What can happen ‑‑ if you're an individual, and you do online banking, and you're not aware that there is spyware on your computer, they can obtain your bank account numbers, your personal information, and they can access your online financial data.” Take these steps in verifying the security of your computer and accounts:

Computer safety: Make sure that your computer is clean before you do any online transactions related to banking or personal information – install a good anti-spyware software and regularly download the anti-spyware definition updates, or set up automatic updates. 

Create a strong, complex password. Microsoft suggests that the stronger your password, the more protected your computer will be from hackers and malicious software. Create an effective password following these guidelines:

·      At least twelve characters long.

·      Does not contain your user name, real name, or company name.

·      Does not contain a complete word.

·      Is significantly different from previous passwords.

·      Contains characters from each of the following four categories: Capital letters, lower case letters, numbers, and symbols. 

Ensure data security: When online, only deal with secure and encrypted websites that are from a credible source. For this final step, van Stiphout explains that simply looking for the https in front of the domain will indicate if your data is encrypted. “Especially when making online purchases, you want to make sure that https prefix is there, and you should see a little lock on the bottom of the toolbar that shows that the session is encrypted,” she said.

She adds, “If you do online purchases, never order from a company that doesn't have a name or address that is verifiable. I always research the company before I do any online transactions with that company.Verify that the company indeed has an address, contact information, that's all verifiable.  You should also find out the safety rating of a web site before visiting it. Norton and TrendMircro are good will have safety ratings.  When in doubt, don't visit the site.  Better safe than sorry. Spyware and viruses can be hard to get rid of.  Your personal information can be compromised and you could lose date if your computer has to be rebuilt with no adequate data backup.  This all takes time and can be very costly. 

Last but not least: Be aware of phishing emails/scams, where you make receive fake notifications from an organization that is posing itself as a legitimate company. These notifications are designed to encourage you to click on links and steal your identity by acquiring information such as your username, password etc. 

Kinetik Information Technology is a premier provider of internet and information technology solutions and resources that move our clients forward. Kinetik I.T.'s mission is to design and develop world-class web sites, internet marketing strategies, web, database, custom software & online shopping cart applications; as well as to provide the resources and network technology that move our clients forward, enabling our clients to reach their full business potential.

To learn more about services and products, and to stay up to date with Kinetik I.T., visit or follow Kinetik I.T. on Facebook, LinkedInor Twitter.

Kinetik I.T.’s MVP

In any sport, being called out as Most Valuable Player, or MVP is a big deal. Being awarded the title by a group of one’s peers holds special significance, because colleagues understand the dedication and challenges an individual faces in becoming skilled in a particular line of work. While typically used in sports, the term MVP has come to be used in completely unrelated fields of endeavor such as music and business – as well as the technical community.


According to Microsoft, the MVP award is given to "exceptional, independent community leaders who share their passion, technical expertise, and real-world knowledge of Microsoft products with others.” The awarded are those who "actively share their ... technical expertise with the different technology communities related directly or indirectly to Microsoft". An MVP is awarded for contributions over the previous year. One such person can be found in the offices of Kinetik I.T.: Tom van Stiphout, Microsoft Access MVP.


Tom is the Software Development Manager of Kinetik I.T. Having earned a degree from Amsterdam University, he moved to the United States in 1991. After a few years with C++ and Windows SDK programming, he gradually shifted his focus on database programming. He worked with Microsoft Access from version 1.0, and Microsoft SQL Server from version 4.5, when both products were first released.


In 1997, Kinetik I.T. became one of the 27 Regional Directors in the United States, a title it held for three consecutive years. In this capacity Tom attended several conferences in Redmond and was one of the presenters at the annual Developer Days conference in Phoenix. During the last several years Tom has added .NET programming to his repertoire and he is particularly interested in hybrid applications that combine the best of what various platforms have to offer. Tom has been a frequent contributor to the Access newsgroups for many years, and was recently awarded the title of Access MVP.


To learn more about services and products – including how Microsoft Access can help your business – visit or follow Kinetik on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.



Microsoft Certified IT Partner

A quotation by author John Gardner proclaims, “Mastery is not something that strikes in an instant, like a thunderbolt, but a gathering power that moves steadily through time, like weather.” To work toward a mastery of our chosen craft, at Kinetik I.T., we maintain the training and knowledge base that comes as a Microsoft Certified Partner. 

To the layperson, the distinction may not sound like much; within the I.T. world, however, gaining the Microsoft Partner status is an accomplishment that exemplifies a dedication to quality and continuous improvement, as individuals and as a company.  To become certified, a company must be established in business for a minimum of five years, demonstrate exemplary customer service, have attained advanced training and passed certain exams. 

The program was launched in October 2003 and offers special access, training, and support to members of its Partner Network. Microsoft describes these partners as independent companies that can provide customers with the highest levels of technical expertise, strategic thinking, and hands-on skills. They encompass a broad range of expertise and vendor affiliations and their real world perspective can help customers prioritize and effectively deliver technology solutions. 

In 1993, Kinetik I.T. became one of the first Microsoft Certified Solution Providers in the Valley and we have maintained the partnership for over 18 years. As such we have direct access to Microsoft’s Solution Channels. Our full-time staff includes Microsoft Certified Professionals, Microsoft Certified Solutions Developers, Microsoft Certified Systems Engineers, Microsoft Certified Computer Network Technicians and Microsoft Most Valuable Professionals (MVP).

Located in Phoenix/Scottsdale, Arizona, Kinetik I.T. is a full-service information technology and internet services provider, offering a wide array of technology and internet strategy solutions, as well as sound advice.  To learn more about services and products, and to stay up to date with Kinetik IT, visit or follow Kinetik on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.



Security Tips for Business

To ensure online safety, users should start with the basics – whether it’s for business or personal use.  Namely, users should make sure the computer is clean from data compromising software such as spyware before completing any online transactions related to banking or personal information; users need to have a complex password; and, when online, users must verify websites are secure and sensitive information is encrypted by the provider.  For business-specific security, a few more considerations apply.

While tips for business security are similar to those for personal use, businesses need to view things from a more comprehensive enterprise-minded level.  For businesses, it’s imperative not only to have anti‑spyware and anti‑virus software installed, but also maintaining security updates and patches are installed in a timely fashion.  It’s also imperative for businesses to ensure that backups of data are performed on time.

It’s not enough just to back up data, either.  At Kinetik I.T., we recommend trying once a month to restore a file from a backup to verify it was done correctly, ensuring that data is accessible when needed.  “We have often seen it happen where a company, after doing years of backups, has never tried to restore a file. Then, when they lose data and try to restore it, it’s very disappointing to find that all the time and effort they’ve spent on backups has been for naught.  And restoring a file is a quick and simple task – and it can make all the difference,” said Kinetik I.T. president Josette van Stiphout. Businesses should make sure data is backed up correctly, and that the restore is successful.

Businesses can also have a network assessment performed, which, in addition to assessing security, includes ensuring that employees only have access to the appropriate information and files, that the Active Directory is set up correctly, and that external vulnerabilities are being identified and taken care of.

Feel like your company’s online security isn't what it should be? Talk to a member of the Kinetik I.T. Team today to see how we can help.

Creating a Disaster Recovery Plan for Your Business

It could be as big as a powerful weather event. It could be something as small as a car crashing into a power line just a few miles from your business. It could be as simple as an equipment failure. No matter what the cause, though, it all adds up to one thing for your company – disaster. Take a moment to imagine your company without power or access to your data for 12 hours. Multiply that. Imagine your business without access to any of that for 24 hours. 48 hours? It seems like just a day or two of downtime shouldn’t do that much damage to your company, but the simple reality is that it can and will.

Enter disaster recovery planning.

Every single business, no matter how small or large, has to have a comprehensive disaster recovery plan today. That problematic event is literally just around the corner. It doesn’t take much, and learning how to make certain your business will survive is an absolute must.  

Wondering how to get started when you’re already spending each day trying to stay afloat in a problematic economy? It’s an overwhelming prospect, but we can help.

The premiere IT consulting company in Phoenix, we can be here from start to finish. Take a moment to look at the services we offer.

  • Planning: Easily the most important phase of disaster recovery, we know that you may not be familiar with how to match your needs with the technology that can help. We’ll help decide what your risks are and how to protect your company, as well as how to budget for those expenses.

  • Documentation: You can plan forever, but if you don’t actually document what has to be done, you can’t respond to disaster as well as you’d like. We’ll help you get an inventory of your assets together as well as show what backup technologies are in use and the process that must occur should disaster finally hit.

  • Implementation: It can be tough to know what to do once it hits, but we’ll work with your staff members to implement all of your solutions so that what should happen in the event of a disaster actually does happen.

  • Testing: You want to make certain that you actually know what to do when disaster strikes, so we’ll help with this phase too. Once things are implemented, we can help you understand how well the backups work and exactly how the data is restored. We can even do this periodically to help test plan updates.

      You don’t want to be left in shambles when a disaster occurs, no matter how small your company or your IT budget may be. To learn more about our IT consulting and disaster recovery planning services contact us at or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.