Acronyms are great, they can really speed up communication and make it easier to write documents, as long of course that everyone shows what they are. If you know them, then you are part of ‘the club’, but if you don’t then they can make you feel excluded. We have all sat in meetings where they have been thrown around, and found one we did not know but didn’t want to ask what it was. No one wants to look like the only person in the room that does not know it (but chances are you are not alone!).
This is particularly true in IT and Technology, where meetings are just an endless series of Acronyms being thrown around. So here is our guide to the most common ones, but to start I will explain some more business type ones, as a warm up!
TLA – ‘Three Letter Acronym’ – This is an old one, and used a bit of a joke about the use of acronyms
OOO – ‘Out Of Office’ – Basically this means that the person will not be as quick to respond to their emails or requests as quickly as normal
EOM – ‘End Of Message’ – This is used a lot at the end of a subject in an email, it denotes that there is nothing to read in the body of the email, it is all in the subject line.
COP – ‘Close Of Play’ – Meaning the end of the working day. Though this is a bit ambiguous depending on when your working day ends!
Now on to the technical ones
HTML – ‘Hyper Text Markup Language’ – This is the code that is behind most web pages, it is used to help with the layout and formatting of the content, for example;
<P> This is a line of copy </P>
Is saying that everything between ‘<P >’ & ‘</P>’ is a paragraph (the ‘P’ is what makes them ‘Paragraph’, they can be quite a lot of other things as well). So that is an example of HTML, but it is everything on the page.
CSS – ‘Cascading Style Sheets’ – These are separate documents that are used along with HTML documents to create a web page, so HTML helps with the ordering and structure, but the CSS tells an item how to look, so that could be font, size, colour or position amongst many other things.
API – ‘Application Programming Interface’ – This is a little bit of software that allows one application to talk to another application, a good example is if you have a website that takes payments, then you would use an API to get your website and the payment site to talk to each other.
SEO – ‘Search Engine Optimisation’ -This is the process of improving the quality and quantity of website traffic to your website or landing page from search engines.
BPA – ‘Business Process Automation’ – This is exactly what it sounds like, if you have a common repetitive task that is currently done by a human, then there is a good chance it could be automated, to make it quicker, more efficient and consistent.
CMS – ‘Content Management System’ – This is a system that allows you to make your website ‘dynamic’ which essentially means that you have an admin, that you can log into and update the content, users, pictures etc on your website. A really common one is WordPress, which you may of heard of.
CRM – ‘Customer Relationship Management’ – This is easily confused with CMS, but is quite different, this is a system that allows you to manage your customer relationships, so you can add notes, send emails through it and set tasks with deadlines. A really popular CRM is called Hubspot.
FTP – ‘File Transfer Protocol’ – This is a system that allows you to look directly at the file structure on a remote computer or server. This is used primarily to allow you to copy files between one computer and another. For example, if someone has built a website for you, they may use FTP to copy it from their computer to the server to make it live.
IP – ‘Internet Protocol’ – This is a set of rules, for routing and addressing data across networks so they arrive at the correct destination.
DNS – ‘Domain Name System’ – This is like a phonebook of the Internet. Human beings use domain names to access information online but web browsers use IP addresses. DNS translates domain names to IP addresses so browsers can load Internet resources.
SaaS – ‘Software-as-a-Service’ – This is where you use a service that is built in a website, so you log into it through a browser, rather than it being a piece of software you install on your computer. This is useful as you can ensure that you are always using the latest version of something, as it is not installed on your computer. Good examples of this are Xero (accounting software) or Canva (graphics creation software).
I hope these have been useful to you, and that you learnt at least one new acronym.
So in summary, acronyms are useful shorthand as long as everyone knows them, if they don’t then they create a barrier and make things harder to understand.
If you need help with your CSS, CMS, API or HTML then get in contact.