Author Archives: Black Mountain Software

Is It Time to Upgrade Your Technology?

Technology-Art
When determining technology needs and upgrades, many important questions should be considered: Is this the right time to consider a change? How will this affect the agency’s daily workload? When should we do it? Is this right for our organization?

Changing software or technology can be a big deal. Despite what some vendors might say, it’s a significant change that requires a well-thought out plan and good decision-making that will lead to a beneficial long-term solution.

Five Key Questions to Ask Before Upgrading Your Agency’s Technology

  • How Much Will It Cost and Do We Have the Funds to Support an Upgrade?
  • Read more >
    Posted in Accounting Basics, Best Practices, BMS Tech Tips, City Clerk Cafe, Cloud Computing, Office Efficiency, School Software, Small Cities, Technology, Utility Billing | Comments Off on Is It Time to Upgrade Your Technology?

    How Schools Are Stretching Their Technology Dollars

    Budget Button

    Schools are used to doing more with less, and they never cease to amaze us. When you walk into a classroom filled with laptops, tablets and smart boards, it may seem impossible that schools are saving any money on technology at all. But, that’s where you’re wrong.

    Innovative schools, especially charter schools that are able to tap into unconventional sources for funding, are finding ways to upgrade their technology while cutting their technology budgets.

    The ability to use more technology in the classroom without dramatically increasing their technology budget is a win-win: teachers are able to tap into new sources for instruction and students are learning more with technology-driven lesson plans and instruction. Read more >

    Posted in Accounting Basics, Best Practices, BMS Tech Tips, School Software, Technology | Comments Off on How Schools Are Stretching Their Technology Dollars

    Tax Forms and More for Happier Clients

    Signed, Sealed, Delivered—Easier, More Convenient and Faster.

    F2014-10-03O-Naorms, forms everywhere! There’s 1099’s, W2’s, 1095’s, and utility bills to boot! And now, you can get them all and much more from one reliable, trusted supplier.

    Our most recent and successful business partnership is with Rocky Mountain Print Solutions (RMPS). They produce and deliver BMS-formatted forms that integrate perfectly with Black Mountain Software to ensure your form printing is accurate and improves your mailing success.

    And, do you make yet another supplier call for printer ink? Now you don’t have to. If your printer ink is running dry from printing all those required forms, consider consolidating your form and printer supply needs with RMPS. Read more >

    Posted in Accounting Basics, Best Practices, BMS Partners, BMS Products, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency, School Software, Small Cities, Utility Billing | Comments Off on Tax Forms and More for Happier Clients

    Five Efficiency Hacks for Over-Worked Clerks

    Some days you want to pull your hair out. Some days you may have put on an entire wardrobe of “hats” to wear in your job. And some days you may gaze at that tropical island themed wallpaper on your desktop and fall into a relaxing daydream of a place far from your office–and that’s ok! It happens to us all.

    It’s at these moments when our eyes are tired, we have a headache, and we can’t remember what exactly we were doing two minutes before that we say to ourselves, “How can I make this better?”

    That’s the first step towards efficiency salvation at work. Read more >

    Posted in Best Practices, City Clerk Cafe, Office Efficiency, Uncategorized | Tagged | Comments Off on Five Efficiency Hacks for Over-Worked Clerks

    How Big Data is Shaping Government Agencies for the Future

    Y2014-10-03O-Naou’ve probably heard the statistic that every two years we double the amount of information created. So, at this rate, by 2020 it is estimated that we will produce 44 trillion gigabytes of data each year. This data that we exponentially create is what’s called “big data”, and even government agencies are finding ways to take advantage of the information collected for the good of their constituents.

    For most small cities, like the ones Black Mountain Software services, the use of big data to improve systems and process seems like a futuristic concept. But larger and very progressive cities are finding big use for this big data, using it to improve planning, decision-making and reputation management. Read more >

    Posted in Government Accounting Standards, Small Cities, Technology | Tagged , , | Comments Off on How Big Data is Shaping Government Agencies for the Future

    Spring Clean Your Software and Systems

    T2014-10-03O-Nahere’s nothing like a good spring cleaning to help sharpen your tools and remove the dust and clutter, but one thing we often don’t think about spring cleaning is our computer system and software.

    Early spring is the perfect time (before finalizing budgets) to seriously evaluate your software needs and tools and determine what is or isn’t working for your agency. So put down your feather duster, and instead think outside your cubicle of how you can spring clean your processes.

    Spring cleaning your software means: 

    • Assessing your software and storage needs now and for the future
    • Setting aside budget for growing software needs
    • Sharpening your software tools and evaluating if there are any new add-ons or features you would like to integrate
    • Upgrading your version of software
    • Upgrading your storage needs
    • Identifying tools that will help you do your job better
    • Investigating other options for software that better suits your agency

    First, every agency should evaluate and assess what their future needs are and if the current software is meeting those needs. Read more >

    Posted in Best Practices, BMS Tech Tips, City Clerk Cafe, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency, Small Cities, Uncategorized, Utility Billing | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Spring Clean Your Software and Systems

    City of Lava Hot Springs Switches from DOS to BMS

    From D-O-S to B-M-S

    We are excited to feature one of our newest clients, Lava Hot Springs, Idaho, in our small town stories this month. This is possibly one of the most unique places we have ever featured.

    About Lava Hot Springs, Idaho

    Lava Hot Springs, located in Bannock County, has a few things that make it unique. Besides the fact that it has 102-degree water surrounding the 455-acre town, it also claims to be an “odor-free” natural hot spring! Just imagine, soaking in warm, mineral-rich water as you take in the surrounding beauty with a deep, detoxifying breath that smells of…nothing! Read more >

    Posted in BMS Products, City Clerk Cafe, Customer Spotlight, Small Cities, Technology, Utility Billing | Tagged | Comments Off on City of Lava Hot Springs Switches from DOS to BMS

    How a Good Audit Trail Can Save You!

    T2014-10-03O-Nahere’s only one word scarier than “tax prep”: Audit. Regardless of how scary this word sounds, there are tools and processes available that can save you
    from a truly nasty predicament. Those processes include a thorough and comprehensive audit trail.

    Despite use of the word “trail”—which insinuates a long and lengthy process—the idea of an audit trail is actually very simplistic and feasible. Creating an
    audit trail is as simple as:

    1. Utilizing software that allows you to make notes on entries and changed accounting records

    2. Logging the details of the change or record for future reference

    3. Including in the audit trail details of who did what, when, how, and for how much, and

    4. Read more >

    Posted in Best Practices, BMS Products, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency | Comments Off on How a Good Audit Trail Can Save You!

    Engineers Week 2016

    Spreading the Word About Engineers

    T2014-10-03O-Nahere’s one week in February where we take a moment out of our lives to show love, respect and thanks for the ones who make a difference in our lives.

    Did you think we were talking about Valentine’s Day? Well, leave it us to hold out for a more lesser-known, slightly nerdier holiday: Engineers Week!

    Why do Engineers get a whole week of celebration here at BMS? Well, simply put: engineers make our lives better! Their work helps turn ideas into
    solutions, solve problems, build dreams and see opportunities for future improvements. Because they play such an integral role in our society, National Engineers Week exists to increase the conversation about why we need engineers, and brings awareness about the career field to schools and educators so
    we can continue to develop the next generation of engineers! Read more >

    Posted in BMS Staff, Technology, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Engineers Week 2016

    8 Things Every City Clerk Should Understand and Know About in 2016


    T2014-10-03O-Nahe job of being a City Clerk requires wearing many hats: software user, recorder, reporter, coworker, conference-goer, accountant, social media expert, customer service provider, budgeter…there is no end to the many roles and tasks completed by city clerks on the daily. In honor of a new year that promotes continued learning and self-improvement, we’ve compiled a list of what we believe are the eight things every city clerk should know and understand for 2016.

    What the Cloud is?
    With so many agencies going to “The Cloud,” it is important to know exactly what this dreamy concept is and how it affects data computing and storage. Read more >

    Posted in Accounting Basics, Best Practices, BMS Products, Cloud Computing, Government Accounting Standards, Office Efficiency, Technology | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 8 Things Every City Clerk Should Understand and Know About in 2016

    Stay Connected with Black Mountain Software

    If you sign up for Black Mountain Software emails, about 4 times per year you will receive a special email designed for organizations like yours that are not already Black Mountain customers. We won’t clutter your inbox, and we will provide information relevant and helpful to you. And don’t worry, your email address is never sold or given out to third parties.

    Select the Email Updates You'd Like to Receive:

    Other Ways to Stay Connected:

    Subscribe to the Blog Subscribe to City Clerk Cafe Connect with LinkedIn
    Follow on Facebook Follow on Twitter Connect on YouTube