Newsletter for Fall 2010
October 2010 - Issue 12
In This Issue
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Attention: Rent Plus users. We've got a special message for you below.

Microsoft has released a beta version of what some techs are saying is not only the best internet browser Microsoft has ever produced, but possibly the best browser for Windows that anyone has produced. More about that below. Also, we've found a better solution for remote connections. It's called TeamViewer and it makes it a lot easier for our Support Department to connect to your computer when that is required.

We've been working on a new web-based software system for the last couple of years. It's still not finished---building software takes a looong time---but we're getting there. There's a little about it below and you can be sure there will be lots more in the future.

Internet Browsers. Microsoft has just introduced the beta version of Internet Explorer 9.0. Although Internet Explorer still leads the pack among browsers, Firefox and Google's Chrome have been gaining ground. They're all going for a cleaner, leaner look. Microsoft says IE 9 is "more like the stage so that the web page itself can be the star." There's no doubt, it is good looking.

One important reason to upgrade is internet security. IE 9 offers protection from "malvertising." We don't even need to understand exactly how this works. It's enough to know that it's a new way for the bad guys to put something that will cause harm to our computer on an otherwise perfectly benign website. IE 9 tells us: "Content on this website has been reported as unsafe. We recommend that you do not continue to this website."

IE 9 only works on Vista or Windows 7 but, we've said before that Windows 7 is the best operating system that Microsoft has come up with in a long time. So, it's time to upgrade!

Speaking of Upgrades. Operating systems, browsers, and virus-protection software are all regularly updated to improve security. But we constantly see our users' computers displaying messages that say, "You need to install the upgrade!" All of the companies that produce this software continuously work to improve their security. They have to do that to keep up with the hackers who are developing new ways to get into our computers. But all that work does no good if we don't install the upgrades.

TeamViewer. All computer technicians are always interested in new applications. Our Customer Support Techs have tried many different remote access applications and they've finally found one that we really like. It's called TeamViewer and it uses full encryption and has high security ratings. We purchased a corporate license, which means that our users don't need to purchase remote access software. TeamViewer allows us to do an automatic connection through the internet that does not require getting through your local router so it's much easier to setup. It's very easy to install and use. We even put the downloads on our Space Control Login page.

By the way, if you ever travel with your laptop and would like to access your home computer while you're on the road, TeamViewer offers a free residential version.
Tradeshows. A year ago, after finding ourselves standing around in empty exhibit halls chatting with other vendors, we decided to skip a few tradeshows. The recession seemed to be keeping people at home looking after their storage business rather than attending tradeshows. There was no need for us to be there if our customers weren't there.

A New Space Control. At the same time, we were working on a new web-based software package and thought our time could be put to good use there. We worked with our designers and programmers and put together a system that has us very excited. After some analysis we realized that, although the industry has seen several web-based systems, they are all pretty much the same site software we've all been using for years, but moved to the internet.

The Industry Has Changed But The Software Hasn't. While the industry has moved from the single-owner mom and pop operation to large companies with many different locations, storage software hasn't changed much. Management is vastly different when conducted at this level. Yet, no one has really developed a management software package. So, that's what we did.

It's so cool. We started with the latest technology. Programming for the web has made huge advances. We didn't do a web package before because the tools available just wouldn't let us make it as user-friendly as Space Control must be (and has always been). But now, there are new programming languages available that let us not only be easy to use but downright cool. It's a whole new look and yet intuitive and simple.

See You In March. We can't wait to show it to you. And we plan to do that at the March ISS show in Las Vegas. We may not be ready to sell it yet, but we will have a demo that you can check out.
Since HiTech was purchased by CenterShift we've gotten loads of calls from Rent Plus users who aren't too happy about the new ownership, or about being forced to go to an expensive, complicated web-based application..

Give us a call. We can convert most Rent Plus files and with Space Control, you get:
  • The BEST tenant ledger in the industry, with everything on a single screen.
  • Great Theft Prevention and industry-leading Audit Trails.
  • Foolproof data security.
  • Timely support.
  • Credit Card interface that meets newest PCI DSS regulations. Plus ACH.
  • Online.HQ and Online.PAY: Take payments through your web page. (opt.)
  • Yield Management: Strategies to really increase your rental income. (opt.)

So, if you have some Rent Plus systems and want a more reliable, better-supported system, please give our sales rep, Gilbert Bohen, a call at 800-663-8688 or email GilbertBohen@SpaceControl.com.
About the many types of discounts you can setup in Space Control's NX.gen? Everything from the $1.00 move-in special, to pay 12 months and get the 13th month free, to a $20 coupon. We find users still using rent allowances because that's what they are used to but discounts give you a lot more information.

On the Operational Variance report NX.gen details how much money was "given away" with each type of discount. Move-in discounts are separated from discounts to existing customers. Instead of just looking at a gross amount given away in Rent Allowances, you can tell how much the move-in special on those 5 X 8 spaces are costing. And, yes, you can create a discount that can only be used at move-in and then only for the one particular size that you want to "push" at this time.

Another advantage to using discounts is that the Sales Journal will post the discount in the month that it takes effect. If you give the 13th month free to customers who pay 12 months in advance, that discount doesn't hit your Sales Journal until it happens in the 13th month. And, of course, if the customer moves out before the 13th month, there is no discount at all.

We had some staffing problems during August and had a hard time keeping up with our Saturday support hours a couple of times. But, we're back on track now, fully staffed, and Saturdays are always covered, as they have been for years. I would like to personally apoligize for any problem this may have caused you.

Ramona Taylor
Space Control Systems, Inc.

phone: 1-800-455-9055