Mail You Should Always Shred

shredding junk mail

The endless flow of junk mail we receive daily may seem harmless, yet much of it contains information useful to identity thieves. By casually discarding these materials into the wastebasket, you increase your risk of identity theft. A personal shredder is an easy, safe way to prevent mail containing sensitive information from ending up in the wrong hands.

Overlooked Identity Details In Your Mail

While we may be ready to shred any mail containing Social Security numbers, we may overlook other details such as phone numbers, date of birth, or details relating to employment or vehicle registration. Identity thieves use this basic information to create victim profiles. Personalized mail is a stepping stone toward a deeper dive by identity thieves toward accessing more valuable information. Make sure you shred any documents containing these often overlooked details.

The Risk of Pre-Approved Offers

Pre-approved credit card offers you receive in the mail have already established most of your critical information to make activating a new card easier. This convenience, however, brings a skilled identity thief closer to acquiring the last few pieces in the identity puzzle to open a card in your name.

Children and Identity Theft

Children are becoming one of the highest targeted groups by identity thieves, as their credit history is completely clean and thus extremely valuable.  Documents from schools, medical documents or any other mail that contains your child’s name, address or age encourages identity thieves to focus on a child’s vital data.

Need a Personal Shredder? Use this guide to help find one that fits your needs: Home Shredders

Father’s Day Home Office Gift Guide

father's day home office gifts

Not sure what to get Dad for Father’s Day? Here are some home office upgrades that will enhance his personal workspace.

A Sit-Stand Workstation

For dads looking to get into shape or just be more active while they work, the new Lotus™ Sit-Stand Workstation brings flexibility and movement to the home office. Standing burns up to 50 calories more a day than sitting, so the Lotus is the ideal addition for any dad who works frequently at his desk. The Lotus features Smooth Lift™ Technology so transitioning from sitting to standing and back again is effortless. Twenty-two different height settings and 17″ of vertical adjustment make the Lotus ideal for accommodating any stature. The Lotus also arrives fully assembled­­—no complicated instructions, no mounting. Just unpack and get started.

standing desk for Father's Day

A Personal Automatic Shredder

The Fellowes AutoMax™ Autofeed Shredder, initially designed for large offices, offers the ease and productivity of automatic shredding with a deskside personal shredder option. The 130C shreds up to 130 sheets of paper at one time, automatically. This includes paper with paper clips, staples, and wrinkles. Simply fill the bin, lock it and push the button. The Accufeed™ Technology shreds away while Dad gets back to other work.

automatic shredder for home office

A Plush Touch Back Support

Back pain is one of the most common complaints by anyone who sits at a desk. Offer Dad the gift of back comfort with the new PlushTouch™ backrest. The Innovative FoamFusion™ technology features memory foam infused with gel beads for maximum personal comfort and support. The adjustable strap with durable buckle also easily fits most office chairs.

backrest for Father's Day

An iPad Case with a Ballistic Nylon Cover

If Dad is an iPad fan, the MobilePro™ Executive Folio iPad Case is the perfect gift, not only protecting his iPad, but also offering a variety of productivity features enclosed in one case. The ballistic nylon exterior also features business card holders, a pen loop, a file folder, a refillable writing pad pocket and a magnetic closure for a complete, slim, all-in-one mobile workstation.

The SmartConnect Case™ allows for an iPad Air®/Air® 2 to be used in-folio, free-standing or hand-held, in vertical or horizontal orientation, and at three viewing angles. The case also includes a  removable Bluetooth® keyboard (iOS®, Android™ and Windows® compatible) with integrated wrist support for increased comfort and productivity.

iPad case for Father's Day

 

Programmers and Sit-Stand Workstations

programmers and sit-stand desks

As a programmer, you can spend 7-10 hours a day focused on coding, which also means all that time seated at a traditional computer workstation. The unhealthy impact of chronic sitting can contribute to heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Standing is an ideal solution for healthier work at a computer. However, if you decide to stand at work, what equipment should you consider that specifically fits your profession?

Sit-Stand Workstations That Adjust Easily

A static sit-stand desk forces you to either stand entirely while working or take a break, while some adjustable sit-stands may require interrupting your task to make the manual changes to height. When as a programmer you are engaged with a piece of intense code, that may not be an option. Select a sit-stand workstation that easily adjusts from sitting to standing positions, so no focus on a task is lost. Smooth Lift Technology sit-stands feature that intuitive adjustability so you need only rise while grasping the lift adjustment lever, then grasping the adjustment lever once again to lower the desk back to a seated position. Make sure your sit-stand also has a good spectrum of height adjustment options, which is especially important for tall programmers.

The Flexibility of Multiple Monitors

As a coder you definitely need more than one monitor, so converting to a sit-stand desk shouldn’t mean a compromise.  Make sure your standing desk offers the option for multiple-monitor arms.

Storage Space

Changing over to a standing desk also shouldn’t mean giving up on other advantages of a standard computer workstation, like storage space. Storage space and work surfaces are still essential, so having a standing desk designed with added work and storage spaces allows you to incorporate a hot cup of coffee, notepads, pens and your smartphone into your standing workspace.

standing desk with workspace

Cord Management

One of the big advantages of a static workstation is that all the wires running to your electronics stay still. With a standing desk, continual movement up and down can lead to stress on power cables, tangled cords, and sometimes accidental unplugged peripherals as you change position. Check your sit-stand for cord management design features so that wires move seamlessly with your changing position.

Adding a Sit-Stand Desk to Your Home Office

home office sit stand desk

The daily office grind, doesn’t change if you are managing a small business out of your home or working full-time from a home office. Much like a desk job in a corporate setting, sitting down all day can compromise your health.  In fact, as Marc Hamilton a physiologist and professor at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, La. indicates: “a man who sits 60 hours at a desk job but still works out for 45 minutes a day five times a week still has a sedentary lifestyle.”

Making the Change to a Sit Stand Workstation

Sit-stand desks are a healthy option to the traditional workstation in that regular standing and sitting throughout the day provides the flexibility and movement that can encourage calorie burn and minimize the weight gain that comes with a excessive sitting, and the great benefit of having one in your home office is that you don’t need to make a request to HR. Newer sit stand designs come fully assembled so they are easy to set up. Most importantly new Smooth Lift Technology makes it easier to transition from sitting and standing and back again throughout the day.

Customizing Your Home Office with Sit-Stand Workstations

Personalizing your home office to fit you is one of the great benefits of working from home.  Select a Sit-Stand that has full adjustability. The Lotus Sit-Stand features 22 different height settings and 17″ of vertical adjustment so that you can position your workstation for personal comfort.

So Many Computer Cords to Manage!

The high-tech nature of the modern home office may mean tangles of computer cables. Choose a sit-stand with cable management options so your home office looks uncluttered. The Lotus also features a device charging slot which allows your entire workspace to move freely with you-no cable strain or tangles.

Working with More Than One Monitor

If your home office profession requires multiple monitors, you will need to find a sit-stand workstation that accommodates that need. The Lotus offers the option of a dual monitor arm kit that transforms your sit-stand into a multi-screen workstation-perfect for programmers!

Learn more about Lotus Sit-Stand Desks.

 

Last Minute Deductions for Your Business

 

office tax deductions

As the new year approaches, it’s a good time to review any office needs so you can add those deductions as business expenses. Here are some suggestions to improve productivity for your workplace while saving money during tax season.

Upgrading Your Office Shredder

Have you noticed that you can’t make a phone call while shredding because it’s so noisy, or perhaps you are constantly tearing jammed paper from the shredder’s jaws. Or when emptying the shredder bin, you notice that the paper isn’t quite shredded, more half-eaten? These are all signs that it is time for a new office shredder.  Upgrade to an office shredder that is jam proof, quiet and sure to turn documents to dust before 2017 starts. Shredder tax deductions.

best size paper shredder

 

Adding New Business Machines to the Office

Every time there is an important presentation and you need fifty bound PowerPoints, your first thought is usually that this is an occasional need so you might as well just take the project to your local print shop for binding. If you find yourself saying this often, then you may be throwing money away on expensive outsourced binding costs when you can do it quickly and easily yourself.

Pick out a reasonably priced binding machine and create impressive presentations for every big meeting. Plus, it’s an easy business write-off. Binding Machine tax deductions.

comb binding for business

The same goes for those pesky laminating tasks you sometimes need. If you calculated all the costs accrued every time when you needed laminated handouts for an event or laminated badges for a trade show, you would realize how much you would save with the minor cost of an office laminating machine, which is tax deductible. Laminating Machine tax deductions.

2015 Starlet2_Plus_P_R

Flexible Storage Solutions

Bankers Box tax deduction

As your business grows, so does the amount of paper records you may have to store. Your initial consideration may be metal filing cabinets, which are bulky and take up a lot of space. But more importantly steel cabinets aren’t flexible, offering solid but rigid records storage.

With Bankers Box file boxes, you can easily add more boxes as your business grows, move them to back rooms or easily take them to outside storage units without a lot of fuss. As some of your files get outdated, you can easily discard unneeded boxes. The perfect storage solution for any small business and an ideal deductible business cost: Bankers Box Tax Deductions.

Holiday Home Office Buying Guide: Four Unique Gifts

For those on your gift list who take their home office seriously, here are some great ideas to provide comfort and productivity.

Home office

Upgrade to an Automatic Shredder

automatic shredder for home office

Enhance productivity in the home office by automating  everyday shredding needs. The AutoMax 200C Auto Feed Shredder gives that special someone on your gift list  versatile shredding performance with 200 sheet automatic shredding and 10 sheet manual shredding. The AccuFeed Technology lets them shred hands free with a 12 minute run time. They can also shred paper clips, staples, credit cards and junk mail. A great gift for anyone who needs a better shredder.

Add Professionalism and Save Money with Personal Laminating

versatile home office laminator

End the days of expensive laminated projects at the local office center. The Saturn 3i 125 Laminator is a simple DIY laminating machine that makes durable handouts, laminated business cards and dry erase charts that bring productivity to the home office for less money. This home office laminator is the ideal gift for someone who needs occasional laminating projects and also needs to save money for their home business. The Saturn 3i 125 provides rapid one minute warm-up and  a 12/1/2″ entry for versatile document size, as well as a supply kit to get them started.

 

Improve the Air of the Home Office

home-office-air-purifier

With the winter months, the home office can get stuffy and with cold and flu season, germs circulate throughout the heating system. Time spent in the home office can make anyone sick, even when they try to sanitize surfaces and wash hands. After all, cold and flu germs linger in the air for a long time, making a home office air purifier a thoughtful gift. The AeraMax DX95 Air Purifier provides hospital type filtration, effectively cleaning the air in large rooms 300-600 square feet. Also the AeraSmart™ Sensor monitors the air quality and automatically adjusts the fan speed to keep air purified all the time. Look for the certified asthma and allergy friendly™ by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America stamp of approval if someone on your Christmas list needs extra protection from allergies and asthma.

 

Toast Toes in a Chilly Home Office

8030901_climatecontrol-footrest

 

Sometimes a home office can be too warm or too cold, or both depending on the weather. If you have someone on your Christmas list with complaints of cold feet, this Climate Control Footrest will be deeply appreciated. This comfy footrest fits easily under the desk and features three temperature settings: cool fan, low heat, and high heat-so it also works great on sultry summer afternoons. The fan lets you adjust workspace airflow to suit your preference and the auto-off feature prevents overheating. They will also enjoy the surface massage bumps to help soothe their feet while they work.

When A Laptop is Too Hot To Handle

hot laptops

All laptops get hot while you are working on them. But when is your laptop too hot? Have you been noticing unexpected self shutdowns? This may indicate a bigger problem. Laptops are designed with preventive sensors to stop overheating from causing damage. Frequent shutdowns may indicate technical problems.

Check Your Laptop Fan.

All laptops have a ventilating fan to release the excess heat they produce. Find the fan and place your hand near it. You should feel warm hot coming out. This means your heat management system is working properly. If the air coming out doesn’t seem that warm, this may mean a buildup of dust is limiting the fan’s capacity. If you are okay with opening up your laptop, you can find the fan inside. Blow on it  or use compressed air to get it clean. If you are not comfortable with this maintanence, find a reputable computer repair service to take care of the problem. (Make sure you let them know you think it just needs a thorough cleaning).

A LapDesk Can Help Your Lap Stay Cool & Comfortable.

Because working laptops can still be uncomfortably hot, use lap desks to help manage the heat and keep you comfortable. Portable laptop desks are good for business travelers as they make working in airports and in hotels easier. The GoRiser also has cooling vents to help ventilate the laptop, as well as SoftShock technology which provides a softer cushion for your lap.

Laptop Lap Desk

GoRiser Laptop Lap Desk

 

Other designs like I Spire Series Laptop Desk are ideal for home users with features like bumpers to keep the laptop securely in place making them more comfortable for those who use laptops while on the couch or in reclining positions.

Comfortable Laptop Lap Desk

I-Spire Laptop Lap Desk

Dual Monitors Increase Productivity and Lower Company Costs

Dualscreen_shutterstock_172717535_edited-1

 

In a recent study conducted by Dell, dual monitors were tested against single monitors for productivity. The research revealed that dual monitor configurations saved time and improved accuracy in the computer tasks performed. Workers also favored the dual monitor option for their daily computing needs. Positive responses from users is also important data from a productivity perspective as higher satisfaction among employees translates into greater productivity.

 

Choosing the Best Multi-Monitor Setup

8041701_DualDepthAdj_Hero

Flexibility with adjustment is key for comfort and monitor placement where you need it

Easy to mount monitor arms take the headache out of setup and allow changes in workstation configurations to be made easily without hassle.

Tilt and elevation adjustment capabilities offer the greatest and most precise range. Your monitor arms should adjust to you, not you to it!

Weight support-Make sure the monitor arm you select can handle the weight of  25  pound flat screens.

How Dual Monitor Arms Performed Over Single Monitors Setups

In terms of speed of performance, dual monitors increased efficiency by two minutes per task over single monitors.

Time on Monitor

The research also showed that information was easier to find using dual monitors.

easy to find infoe

How does this productivity translate into financial savings?

Researchers broke out the potential savings by number of employees and by monitor configuration. For example, moving from a single 17-inch screen to a setup of dual 19-inch monitors brings a productivity gain that translates to 56 extra days of work per employee per year, or approximately $1.5 million in cost savings per year for a company of 250 employees.

Three Must-Have Father’s Day Gifts for the Home Office

Dad’s day is just around the corner. Give him these gifts to complement his home office with comfort and productivity.

 mexican-fathers-day-42

Upgrade Dad’s Shredder

Show how the new auto feed shredders make shredding easier. This is an especially great gift for dads who love new technology. The small office sized auto feeds operate hands free, grinding up 130 sheets of documents at one time, and all automatically. Just fill the drawer, push the button and walk away! The 130C also shreds paper clips, staples and credit cards with ease.

130C-HeroLeft_041014

Enhance Dad’s Tablet Performance

The new MobilePro is the perfect gift if Dad is a tablet user. The slim, all-in-one mobile workstation lets Dad take his work anywhere, combining iPad and paper in one luxurious folio.  The Executive MobilePro also comes with a detachable Bluetooth keyboard. Dad will love the ballistic nylon exterior, business card holders,  pen loop, a file folder, a refillable writing pad pocket and the fact that he can use his iPad in-folio, free-standing or hand-held, in vertical or horizontal orientation, and at three viewing angles.

MP_ExecFolio_HeroRight_051415

The Gift of Comfort

For long hours working in his office, Dad will love the Heat and Soothe Back Support. This temperature controlled backrest provides warmth or coolness to relax back muscles while delivering continuous lumbar support.

9190001_Hero_072210

Change the Way You Work at Your Desk and End Back Pain

 

866f362a-2a01-4027-b38c-081bc1f5a573-medium

 

A little awareness of how you work at your desk and some minor adjustments can end that nagging back pain.

  1. Try to keep your head and neck aligned above your shoulders. This may take some practice, as we commonly hang our head forward to see computer monitors. Known as vulture neck, this can lead to consistent back pain over time.
  2. Don’t reach too far for your mouse. Keep it close to your keyboard. The overreach, combined with insistent clicking of the mouse button, transfers pain from arm, to shoulder, to back.
  3. Use a lumbar back support on your desk chair. That added support prevents chair slump. You can also get supports with cooling and heating features for extra comfort.9190001_Hero_072210.png
  4. Breathe for your back. Try these breathing exercises every now and then while sitting at your desk. Take deep breaths from your stomach muscles, think of sucking your belly button toward your spine. This strengthens core muscles that weaken from excessive sitting.
  5. Make sure you are the right distance from your monitor. Hunching forward is bad, as is reaching for your keyboard from far off. Try to be about 2-3 inches away.
  6. Keep feet planted. Crossing feet at the ankles or resting a foot on a file cabinet will eventually put strain on your back muscles. Keep feet flat on the floor and about shoulder width apart.
  1. Take a break. Just moving around every 15-20 minutes helps circulation.
  1. Don’t cross your legs. This position creates tension in your legs that translates into back pain.
  1. The infamous phone cradle. Don’t cradle your phone on your shoulder. Even though you may do this infrequently, eventually this awkward position strains neck, shoulder and back muscles.