Education

Posted by Charles Edge on May 15th, 2015

Two-factor verification on your AppleID helps to keep everything nice and secure. Once enabled, you will need any two  of the following to access your iCloud account: The password to your Apple ID, a device trusted in the portal (we’ll trust devices during this process) or a recovery key (which we’ll create during this process). In other words, don’t lose your recovery key!

To enable two-factor verification, you’ll need to already have a password with at least 8 characters that contains at least 1 number and 1 capital letter. Once your AppleID username and password meets these requirements, go to appleid.apple.com and sign in to the AppleID you will enable two-factor verification on. Once in the portal, to enable two-factor verification:

  • Click on Password & Security.
  • Enter the answer to the questions you set up.
  • Click on Get Started…
  • Click Continue on the next screen.
  • Read the first screen with information about two-factor verification.
  • Read the second screen and click Get Started.
  • Add your current phone number to start the verification process.
  • Enter the 4-digit verification code that gets texted to your phone.
  • Click on Verify for devices to trust.
  • Click Continue.
  • On the next screen, document your Recovery Key.
  • Click Continue.
  • Enter the Recovery Key to verify it.
  • Click Confirm.
  • Check the box to confirm you understand what you’re getting into.
  • Click Enable Two-Step Verification.
  • At the confirmation dialog, indicating that two-factor verification was enabled click Done.
  • Two-factor verification then replaces your security questions.

Again, don’t lose that recovery key!

Posted by Charles Edge on March 29th, 2015

I’m no “serial entrepreneur” but I have been involved in starting multiple companies and now multiple divisions of larger companies. And along the way, I’ve found that there are a few distinct types of apps that are must haves. Here, we’ll look at 10 apps. Now, these don’t necessarily need to be “the” app that you decide to use, but the category of app is likely going to help a lot for many small business owners.

MindMeister

Before you do anything, brainstorm! And mind mapping tools are a great start to that process. MindMeister, from MeisterLabs is a great simple mind mapping tool. And when you’re brainstorming, the last thing you want to spend pretty much any time doing, is figuring out the technology. It’s important to use a simple app for this. I usually start with the Notes app and then move into something a tad bit more complex. And MindMeister is usually that slightly more complex tool!

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 11.12.03 AM

Numbers

Yes, prepare for spreadsheets. I like Numbers for the iPad and iPhone. Excel for Office is also now available, which is useful I guess… But from financials to inventory to tracking just about anything, Numbers is a must for many!

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 11.14.28 AM

Box

Spreadsheets aren’t the only types of files you’ll need. And many files are going to need a different app or type of app. Box, and similar services such as Dropbox, will let you sync any file (well, almost any) to your devices. For example, that marked up pdf of the business plan that some angel investor is sending you back. It’s the swiss army knife of file apps, and the data lives on the cloud. And, it’s a great way to share those larger files to customers, that you might otherwise send to their email addresses, angering them by filling up their email.

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 11.24.13 AM

Mint

You’re going to need a much more complicated way to manage money. But, in the beginning, before you’re concerned about where to accrue things, the simplicity of just seeing your cash flow is super-helpful. Especially if you’re getting started by paying a bunch of money for Apple devices and apps to run the business! Even with more complicated budgets, until you have dedicated staff looking at numbers, I’d rather look more often using simpler apps and getting right to the information I care about. In the first few months, that might be whether you can buy a new MacBook for the new hire after you cover rent. Later, your accountant will take your phone from you and delete the app and possibly set it on fire. Well, they can’t set an app on fire, but they would… Sometimes I miss those simpler times… But not the stress.

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 11.27.55 AM

Square Register

Money is awesome. Accepting any money, any time is really important when you’re starting out. Whether you’re firing up a small new Apple consultancy or selling shoes, you’ll need something. If you have inventory, you’ll want something far more feature rich, that allows you to track that. If you are selling hours, you’ll likely eventually need something integrated with payments that tracks that as well. But in the beginning, keep things simple. And pay more for something when you need to, and you can get guidance on what to get for your industry.

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 11.34.21 AM

Hootsuite

There’s no doubt that in the right hands, social media can provide a lot of help to organizations. And really, organizations of any kind. Getting the message out, communicating with customers, finding potential customers, getting your site some exposure for search engines and just in general putting yourself out there. But if you post something on Twitter once and never come back to it, it’s not that useful. Further, you can’t be online all the time. Hootsuite let’s you schedule posts, find things worth posting, analyze what was posted and do all of this across a number of different social networks, from YouTube to Facebook, to Twitter to getting all this into a CRM, such as Salesforce!

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 2.55.22 PM

Elements

Sales is what makes an organization succeed or fail initially. Great products allow you to keep the doors open, and not get run out of town for hocking craptastic wares. But if you can’t get people buying your product then you will fail. This is a universal truth. And your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software needs to be online and accessible from your iOS devices. Most packages seem to get this. Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce, Oracle and SAP are all big software packages, with plenty of features and complexity. As a new company, you need something simple, that will eventually allow you to grow into something more complex. Consider Elements CRM as one of many options.

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 3.19.39 PM

SurveyMonkey

When you first start, you need to pay particular attention to how you’re doing. You can do that for free with SurveyMonkey. And when you get bigger and you can afford a very small amount of money for the service you can then upgrade into their paid plans, to replace the SurveyMonkey branding with your own branding. Surveys are really easy to create, manage and distribute.

Pretty cool. We like their business model as well… 😉

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 3.21.18 PM

Mailchimp

There are large, complicated and sometimes necessary marketing automation software packages, such as Marketo. But there’s also a very popular and simple tool that you can use if you don’t have someone on staff to manage Marketo. Since many a small business doesn’t have all the resources available to run a complicated nurturing system, Mailchimp might be able to make your life much much better. And they have a pretty rad mascot!

Screen Shot 2015-03-30 at 3.28.59 PM

Bushel

Hey, it’s our article. But really, these devices suddenly have financials, customer data and even business plans. Keep your assets secure, make them easier to setup and let us help you to push the limits!

Bonus: That killer app for your industry

ERP, or Enterprise Resource Planning, is software that will run your company. You’d probably be surprised how many of your competitors have written software and sell it on the open market. You know how the commercials say “there’s an app for that?” Well, there usually is… And before you embark upon stringing together some random software titles to get a good workflow together, consider trying to find something that will fill those gaps for your organization.

Posted by Charles Edge on February 13th, 2015

So you’ve been through our features page and you’ve seen our marketing messages. You’re sold. But you have someone else that needs to approve this whole Bushel thing: the owner of a company who decided to buy Macs, the director of your department who tasked you with locking down your iPads, investors who are funding your initiatives and want to see devices secured. So really, what are the benefits that Bushel provides that these people care about? And how do you describe the total cost of this initiative?

Let’s address the benefits first. The four areas most decision makers care about tend to include the following:

  • You need to quickly setup devices. This includes adding devices to your Bushel account, pushing apps to devices, automatically configuring email accounts and automatically configuring settings on the devices to make them as secure as possible.
  • You need to be able to lock down a Mac, iPad or iPhone if that device gets lost or stolen. When devices fall outside your control we give you the ability to secure them. Remove your data, lock a device or wipe.
  • You need to be able to be able to make a quick report on what devices are floating around out there. This inventory includes warranty status, serial numbers, capacity, model and other information (including IMEI if you’re doing enterprise app distribution). We keep track of all that. And we let you export it to Excel, Xero or Quickbooks so you can quickly report information to your boss.
  • You need to consistently know that your devices have the appropriate apps. You have loaded up devices with apps only to have staff turnover and wiping devices cause you to have to buy a whole new set of apps. We let you smartly manage what apps go to what Apple IDs.

A lot of people make decisions based on cold hard cash. So consider this, if you setup 10 iPads by hand, it’s likely to take about half an hour each to load them up with apps, configure security settings and get your inventory of serial numbers and the such into a spreadsheet. That’s about 5 hours. Bushel costs $2 per month, per device. And after the devices are in the hands of your coworkers, you can remotely control them, saving you tons of time when you decide to start using new apps, move your email to a new mail service, add a new wireless network to the office or one of the other many, many things that our customers do on a monthly basis.

In short, Bushel saves you time, makes you more nimble and gives you oversight over all of your devices. Because as a small business, we love small businesses and want to help see you spend your time building an awesome company, rather than get mired in the monotony of setting up and managing Apple devices.

Posted by Charles Edge on January 28th, 2015

Upgrading to a new Operating System can be a pain. Apple continues to make the process easier and easier, especially from Mavericks to Yosemite. For the most part, you go to the App Store, choose to install the new Operating System and then click on the buttons that are highlighted until the process to upgrade to OS X Yosemite is complete.

Screen Shot 2015-01-26 at 4.13.18 PM

Upgrade to OS X Yosemite Through Bushel

 

The person who uses a computer will still have to click on some buttons to upgrade to OS X Yosemite. However, if you add the Install OS X Yosemite app to your apps in Bushel, all of your Mac devices will get the Install OS X Yosemite app. This can take awhile to download (after all, it is a 5.7+GB operating system upgrade), especially if you’re deploying to a bunch of devices on the same network at the same time. Once downloaded, Install OS X Yosemite should open. When the app opens, the person using the computer simply completes the process by clicking on the default options until the computer reboots. And there, one of the least painful OS upgrades you’ll ever do!

Good luck!

Posted by Charles Edge on January 14th, 2015

After months of working on Bushel, we’re super proud to announce that we’re leaving our pilot phase and are now generally available! With this full release comes a new logo, some new screens and we’re stoked to have everyone let us know what you think!

bushel-wordmark-dark-2