January 2021 Employee Update
In the spirit of more communication since most of you are working from home, here’s an internal-use-only e-newsletter. Lots of things cooking so this first-ever edition could be even longer, but in the spirit of brevity, we’re not going to cover everything in January. We’ll try and piece together some sort of newsletter every month going forward. If you have any items you’d like to include, such as vacation or family milestone photos, or perhaps reader-shot-style success afield images, by all means, send them to me for the next employee newsletter. If there’s a question or agenda item you’re interested in hearing more about, please let me know. Deadline for any items for the February newsletter is Wednesday, Feb. 10. Thanks!
Admin Rises to the Occasion
Thank you to admin staff for their patience in dealing with customer complaints about late delivery of their newspapers. Outdoor News has never dealt with the postal issues like what we’re facing right now. We’ve had minor, localized delays before, but we’re dealing with total system failure of this federal agency. Our postal rep told Sara on Tuesday that this could continue for months as the USPS goes through a reorganization.
We’re considering immediately launching e-editions in our other states to give readers the option of not waiting for a mailed version. Phil and Evy have been investigating some options, though our current WeeHaa vendor for Minnesota has been a professional outfit and would be relatively turn-key. There is cost up front, but over the long-term, converting a print reader into a digital subscriber is more profitable.
Office Rental Update
Flexible Circuits next door has expressed some interest in reacquiring some ground footage on the west side of our space. A couple staffers from there swung through in late December, and we’re waiting to hear from building management. That would be ideal if it works out since we could keep our mailing address.
Aaron has been investigating some photo archive software to improve that system. He’ll be testing some software called SmugMug via a 14-day trial the next fortnight.
In the next couple of weeks, Aaron likely will unveil a plan we’ve been considering for months to replace our existing email system. He investigated several options, and we settled on a Microsoft solution because that also gives us access to OfficeSuite updates. We held off on this during the holiday busy season so folks could deal with the switchover during a “slower time.” Everyone would keep their current email address. More details to come probably by next week.
We’re working with a web developer, Roger Sievers, to tune up the Fishing Reports page this winter before open water kicks in this spring. He sent us an update on the new “dashboard” this week. As this shapes up, we’ll send folks a link to check it out.
Backing up. Last year, Aaron sent editorial and production staffers flash drives to back up their machines. Is everyone doing that at least weekly? If your machine or hard drive crashes, this will allow you to preserve your data. Please do this. If you’ve forgotten the process, neither Aaron nor I will ridicule you (OK, I won’t…) if you need a refresher tutorial.
Those of you not present in the office on Tuesday missed a batch of mahnomin porridge featuring Rob’s small-batch Minnesota wild rice and Glenn’s (mass produced?) maple syrup. It was a hit. And it tastes a lot better than it looks.
If anyone has any questions or wants more info on any of the above, please call or email me, or visit in the office.