Free help with IT problems

A new scheme to help small businesses access free help with IT problems has been successfully launched in Norfolk.Norfolk Chamber of Commerce and the county's Business Link say their e-Club Norfolk online scheme will be invaluable to firms which do not have information technology expertise in-house.

A new scheme to help small businesses access free help with IT problems has been successfully launched in Norfolk.

Norfolk Chamber of Commerce and the county's Business Link say their e-Club Norfolk online scheme will be invaluable to firms which do not have information technology expertise in-house.

About 70 businesses gathered at Swaffham's EcoTech Centre for the launch, where a panel of IT experts had been assembled that will help small businesses get the most from their technology.

Angi Doy, business development director for Norfolk Chamber, said: "Business Link IT advisers have been busy in recent weeks recruiting a panel of experts. This new online service available on the e-club website puts small businesses in touch with an IT expert, each of whom have agreed to give their time and expertise free of charge and to answer any question posed within 24 hours.


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"Questions and answers will be posted on the e-club website, so it will be a valuable resource for businesses to build their knowledge of how IT can work for them. Many small businesses do not have IT expertise in house and this service is for them."

The experts each gave a short presentation on their area of expertise to the business audience, and then answered questions ranging from "Which search engines are best for my business?" and "Where can I get a firewall for my Apple Mac?" to "Can I get broadband on a boat?".

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The answers will be posted on the e-club website at www.e-clubnorfolk.co.uk.

The audience also heard from James Ellis of Norfolk Country Cottages who told how the company has maximised its business through using IT. He talked about his quest for broadband and how at one time his business feared it would need to relocate if the firm could not access the high-speed internet connection in its area.

Mr Ellis took matters into his own hands, contacted BT and organised local community meetings until the critical 'trigger point 'of demand was reached, which meant that BT upgraded the local exchange.

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