Category Archive : Business

7 Ways to Make Employees More Productive

Employee productivity is vital to business success. When the workforce is more productive, they can get more things done, which will positively influence business performance. To make employees more productive, keep on reading, and learn from some of the tips we’ll be sharing.

1.  Change Your Approach to Training

One of the best ways to make employees more productive is to change the way they are trained. Take employee training online. It should be accessible anytime and anywhere, allowing employees to learn at their convenience. Introducing microlearning will also help. This will break down the training modules in nuggets of three to five minutes, which will be easier to comprehend.

For effective employee training programs that will have a positive effect on productivity, check out the solutions that TrueOfficeLearning.com can provide.

2.  Embrace Technology

It is undeniable that technology is a valuable asset in any organization. Among others, it has a huge impact on productivity. With the right technology, employees will be more effective and efficient. It can also improve collaboration and communication. There will be a reduced reliance on manual processes. Technology fuels automation, which allows people to do more without compromising the quality of the outcomes.

3.  Add Plants

Green offices make employees happier and more productive. A good way to go green is to add plants in the workplace. This will not only improve aesthetics, but it will also positively impact the profitability of the business. It facilitates psychological manipulation. It will also help ensure creativity and boost mental function.

4.  Let There be Light

Lighting affects mental health in the workplace, making it another crucial element that can enhance productivity. Poor lighting can cause eyestrain, headache, and dizziness, among other problems that will negatively affect the performance of the employees. When the office is well-lit, on the other hand, it will be easier to function and perform.

5.  Create Work/Life Balance

Work can be stressful for employees, and this can also make them unproductive. It is crucial to promote balance in the office. Create shared spaces in the office, such as a game room or pantry. Organize events for socialization. Provide a flexible work arrangement. Do not make employees feel that they are losing their life because of work.

6.  Improve Workplace Conditions

Give employees a nice place to work to make them more productive. This should go beyond adding plants or having proper lighting, as mentioned earlier. See to it that there are proper heating and cooling systems to keep the employees comfortable. Keep the office clean and organized.

7.  Encourage Autonomy

By encouraging autonomy, employees will feel that they have freedom. This allows them to do things the way they see fit. Avoid micromanaging your people. To make them more productive, make sure that they are empowered. Guide them when necessary, but do not make them feel like robots who will do as they are told.

When your employees are productive, your business will be profitable. Take note of our recommendations above to build a more productive workforce, such as by embracing technology, promoting work/life balance, and improving workplace conditions, among others.

5 Ways Construction Businesses Can Meet Compliance Requirements

Compliance is a process wherein businesses obey the laws and regulations dictating what they need to do, such as when it comes to managing their people and limiting their environmental impacts. In this article, we’ll talk about how construction companies can meet compliance requirements to avoid legal woes, including hefty fines and revocation of business licenses.

1.  Control Dust

Dust is one of the biggest problems in construction businesses. It can result in lung cancer and other serious problems, making it a silent and invisible killer. This can also contribute to air and water pollution, among other environmental problems. From using a fog cannon to exploring new materials, there are many ways by which construction companies can limit the harm dust can pose to its workers, the public, and the environment.

Looking for the best dust control solutions in the construction industry? Check out Bosstek and see what they can do to extend a helping hand.

2.  Provide Personal Protective Equipment

Speaking of dust, providing personal protective equipment in construction is another simple way to ensure compliance. From hard hats to earplugs, construction workers should be given proper PPE to minimize the hazards in the workplace. PPEs will protect them from dust, falling debris, slippery surfaces, and electricity, among others. Rules require a strict implementation to guarantee that everyone will be following the protocols. The PPE should also be comfortable to wear so that the workers will not resist.

3.  Go Paperless

Documentation is one of the key components of compliance in construction businesses. With this, going paperless can be a beneficial move. This is not one thing that happens overnight, so start slowly to ditch the paper and go digital. Through digitization, it will be easier to implement a compliant document management practice. Use document management software to properly manage the files the company has to deal with.

4.  Know the Law

One of the best ways for construction companies to be compliant is to be familiar with the existing laws. Without proper knowledge of the regulations in place, it will be impossible to meet the necessary compliance requirements. Ignorance of the law does not excuse anyone from culpability. From building codes to business permits, construction companies should be aware of the legal prerequisites of running the business to become compliant.

5.  Manage Data Properly

Even in the construction industry, data management is crucial. Construction companies will collect data from their clients, and the business has the inherent duty to keep this information safe from external threats, especially cybercriminals. It will help to invest in state-of-the-art digital security infrastructure to prevent data from being infiltrated by hackers.

From dust control to data management, this article talked about some of the most important things that should be emphasized by construction companies in its quest towards being compliant. Doing these things will not only demonstrate abidance with the law, but this can also improve business reputation and positively impact profitability, among other benefits.

Sam Ovens Consulting- What are the Benefits of Hiring a Consultant?

For many small businesses hiring a consultant is considered to be unimaginable due to the additional expenses for their budget. However, after hiring consulting services for a certain project, many of them end up using these services on a permanent basis.

These professionals are armed with the necessary expertise and experience to provide expert advice. Apart from being knowledgeable, they’re incredibly objective, thus detecting and stating the real problems of their clients.

Anyhow, in case you’re still hesitating about hiring an advisor, the following benefits will persuade you in the importance of its services.

It’s time-saving

One of the greatest advantages of hiring a consultant is saving valuable time when working on a certain project or dealing with a specific business task. Working on a project by involving your employees who aren’t exactly knowledgeable in that particular field will result in wasting plenty of time. Perhaps they’ll eventually finish the job, but they would definitely need a longer timeframe than a consultant.

On the other hand, a consulting company would finish the project or task much faster, as these professionals have previously worked for numerous clients. For instance, hiring a financial consultant would certainly help you in calculating your business taxes’ in a shorter time period, than giving this task to some of your workers.

It provides greater objectivity

Numerous companies are dealing with business problems due to lack of objectivity. Most of the owners and members of the management are both professionally and personally involved in the companies, thus refusing to admit the existence of any issue. No matter how hard they try to detect its core, they would always be blind to it.

Hiring a consultant is especially helpful for family businesses, as these are the trickiest when it comes to objectivity. In these cases, most family members aren’t honest about the cause of the firm’s problem, as they are afraid of accusing or offending any of the other relatives. Anyhow, an advisor wouldn’t care about family harmony, but honestly state the person to blame. Click here to take a look at some essential tips for running a successful family business.

In addition, hiring an advisor would provide your firm with the long-needed objectivity, as this person doesn’t have any type of personal connection with it. In fact, this professional would inspect the issue without any bias and list the potential causes. He/ She will also take much less time for finding the cause, unlike you and your associates.

It provides greater market knowledge

Company advisors have an extensive experience in your field of work, which makes them familiar with the work of similar firms in the local area. They use this experience to advise you about which business aspects to improve in order to keep up with your competitors.

Actually, the consultant you’d hire would only need a little time to detect your company’s flaws and find the reason behind your stagnation. He/ She would provide you with useful guidelines and strategies that are based on the current situation on the market. No one has better market knowledge than these professionals, so make sure you hire one.

It may turn into a long-term partnership

Although most firm owners hire business consultants as one-time help, they rather soon realize their importance and decide to prolong their cooperation. What starts as a help on a single project is very likely to turn into a long-term partnership.

These advisors are always here for their clients, to aid them with any type of an issue. They’re available for communication every time you would have an important question to ask or when you are looking for an expert opinion. They are excellent at helping you with every single project, making sure that it’s finished in a timely manner.

It provides expertise

Another amazing benefit of hiring a consultant is being provided with the right expertise. These professionals are real experts in their field of work, thus being able to provide an answer to all of your questions as well as a solution for your firm’s issues.

Moreover, advisors have the required licenses and certifications to perform their work duties legally. These documents are proof of their knowledge and record of experience. Therefore, you won’t need to hire another worker, since a consultant is perfectly capable of providing the professional assistance you need.

Also, these professionals are constantly being updated about the latest methods and strategies in their area of expertise by attending special online courses, such as samovensconsulting.com, particularly designed for experts to brush up their skills.

Wrap up

Hiring a professional advisor might be helpful when working on a particular project or on a permanent basis.

These experts will save you time, money, and bring your business back on track!

If Google thinks about Branding, so should you!

Google is one of the world’s largest companies, conquering not only the internet with its search engine but also the realm of physical devices thanks to its Android smartphone ecosystem.

In years gone by, it was announced that Google would be absorbed into a new firm known as Alphabet, enabling it to sit alongside riskier projects without being directly beholden to them.

Then Google’s long-standing logo design was ditched in favour of a much simpler and perhaps more austere replacement. This was enacted as part of a wider rebranding, under which the look and feel of the various services that fall under Google’s remit are being tweaked for a new era. Companies can contact a Gloucestershire Branding Agency to help them along their way and even Google who are a successful company that spend millions on branding, imagery and content haven’t taken it lightly so neither should you.
So why has Google chosen this point in time to take a new direction with its branding, and what can users and businesses learn from its actions?

Dawn of the Mobile Age

Google has not been beating about the bush in terms of what the new logo is intended to achieve. It is designed to represent the fact that the firm no longer exists solely as a provider of a search engine for desktop browsers but has become a multi-platform entity which has to reshape itself for billions of users harnessing myriad mobile devices.

While the logo change could be seen as part of the wider shift in graphic design and typography towards a flatter, cleaner appearance devoid of ornament, as seen in Apple’s iOS and other platforms in recent years, there are other motivations behind it.

Lessons Learned

If it was not clear already, Google’s rebranding is a recognition of the growing power of mobile devices.

The fact that the logo is less visually complex also means that it is more malleable, enabling it to appear on displays ranging from four inches to thirty inches or more without looking out of place. And the quicker it can load via a wireless connection, the more of the mobile search market Google will capture.

Allergies Signs and Symptoms: Why Do We get These Allergies?

Allergy symptoms (Type I Hypersensitivity) are in reality a failure of our own immunity mechanism that produces our body to get hypersensitized and behave immunologically to typically non-immunogenic elements. The substances that induce the body to get this way are known as contaminants. According to the Canada Pharmacy, in 1906, Viennese paediatrician, Clemens von Pirquet, very first coined the phrase allergic reactions after he noticed that certain symptoms of his patients might have been a reaction to outside allergens, like dust and pollen, or particular foods.

Signs and Symptoms

You understand your allergic reactions are starting should your practical experience puffiness in components of your body. This is called local or wide spread inflammatory reaction, brought on by the presence of contaminants. For instance, if your allergy symptoms affect you within the nose, you may encounter puffiness from the sinus mucosa (allergic rhinitis). Throughout this condition, you will probably find yourself carrying out the sinus salute greater than required as irritation of your nasal area will induce you to definitely wipe your nasal area inside an upward direction.

Alternatively, if the allergy symptoms success you within the eye, soreness and irritation in the conjunctiva often follows. Other typical warning signs of allergic reactions are wheezing and dyspnoea and bronchoconstriction, and quite often completely assaults of asthma attack. You may even experience different skin breakouts, such as eczema, hives, and contact dermatitis.

Wide spread allergic responses are definitely more significant in comparison to nearby symptoms. Depending on the seriousness of your reply, allergies may cause cutaneous side effects, hypotension, coma, edema and bronchoconstriction and even loss of life. Hay high temperature is in fact an example of minimal allergic reactions brought on by airborne pollen. But besides environment aspects, allergic reactions may also be induced by medicines.

Why do we get allergies?

Our defense mechanisms is a well-skilled and disciplined bio-weapon that protects the body from dangerous substances. Its technicians are so incredible that it could determine and damage many foreign invaders. Nonetheless, as incredible as our defense mechanisms is, it can make errors sometimes. And so, we now have allergy symptoms, which, as we mentioned, results from a hypersensitive immunity mechanism.

The hypersensitized immunity mechanism misidentifies an otherwise innocuous compound as damaging, and then episodes the compound having an amount of ferocity that is more than needed. Consequently, we encounter conditions that can vary from mildly annoying to unpleasant to complete failing of significant internal organs from the entire body.

So how exactly does the immune system enter into a hypersensitized state?

There are a number of ideas on this. Some schools premise that allergic reactions are typically triggered by protein. Certain individuals have malfunctioning genetic codes in order that their lymphocytes or even the white blood cellular material (the stuff that your defense mechanisms is made of) are unable to home distinguish between the frightening and also the non-frightening protein.

So, for example, when you ingest protein from shellfish, your lymphocytes feel that the compound is trying to invade your body. Consequently, they produce considerable amounts of antibodies which connect themselves to mast cells and basophils throughout the entire body. This is referred to as the sensitizing publicity and this is the very reason why you suddenly develop allergic reactions.

5 Ways to find extra funding for your SME

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are businesses with no more than a certain number of employees, usually taken to be no more than 250 for medium-sized businesses, and no more than 50 employees for small businesses. SMEs outnumber large firms by a considerable margin. Small businesses accounted for 99.3% of all private sector businesses in the UK at the start of 2018, and a total of 99.9% of all businesses are either small or medium-sized.

One of the main challenges of launching a new SME is often finding funds to get the business started. Luckily, there are several viable options that are available for SME owners these days.

Here are five of the best ways you can fund your SME:

  • Self Funding 

The majority of SME business owners start by funding their venture themselves. Also referred to as bootstrapping, this strategy helps businesspersons to bolster the growth of their projects for some time until there is formal funding available to grow the business. This way forward takes considerable hard work and dedication, and can include using credit cards, leveraging personal assets and using savings, but it isn’t always enough. In which case…

  • Your Friends and Family can Help with Fundraising.

One of the most effective ways to receive funding for your small business is through your friends and family.  The closest people to you will believe in your vision more than those who need convincing from a distance. They will also believe in your ability to transform that vision into a reality. Perhaps the major downside to this is that you’ll be risking a personal relationship if the business fails and the agreement is not structured correctly.

  • Equity Funding  

Equity financing is one of the best ways to raise extra funding for your small business. Here, you can sell your company’s ownership. You’ll receive funding from investors. However, you’ll have to part ways with some portion of your ownership as well as some level of control in your business. Investors could be from your family, angel investors, or venture capitalists. But you’ll reap a significant amount of benefits by using equity financing, including accessing mentorship programs, experience, and advice and guidance from experienced entrepreneurs who have a real vested interest in you doing well. One other disadvantage to this method of funding however is that you’re in a relationship for the long-term, so you need to make sure it’s right for you.

  • Selling Shares 

New investors will want to know the value of your business including how much it could increase in value if they purchase shares. To accomplish this, they will want to know how much their funding will increase your sales as well as profitability, so you need a good business plan and solid figures to make this work. You need to provide prospective investors with an updated financial model that indicates the following: How the business is going to invest the money in different departments to increase sales. And how the initial cost to the business will impact the cash flow.

  • You Can Take a Business Loan

Banks offer business loans for many different reasons including to help business owners finance equipment, real estate, vehicles and for a business cash advance. The loans are often for the short term, but it can sometimes be over the longer term. The duration may vary based on the level of financing needed. Many such loans require collateral. Often, this is the product being purchased.  In this case, the investment will have a low-interest rate compared to one that has no insurance. Some banks will only offer such loans for a significant amount. Therefore, if you should need to borrow less than the minimum provided, you need to seek a different financial institution that will provide that level of credit.

When starting an SME, it’s easy to sometimes get carried away with a lot of spending. The current tax deductibility may even tempt you. Although tax breaks will help cut down on the costs for your business, they will not make it possible for you to purchase for free. You’ll still need to pay for the bulk expenses that a start-up requires.  With that said, it’s vital for you to know how you are going to get that extra funding needed to make a real go of your SME.

Why Should You Invest in a Pallet Flow Rack For Your Business?

Are you trying to keep your warehouse flowing as best as it can? When you’re busy and trying to move forward with things, it’s likely that you are looking at new technologies to try and make things easier. Which techs work well for what you may need?

If you work with pallets, then you may be looking at Pallet Flow racks as an option that makes sense for what it is that you need to do. These specialized racks stack pallets in a manner that allows your employees to easily use and access pallets at your warehouse. But, why do they work well? Here are a few considerations.

Helps Your Employees to Work Faster, Not Harder

Speed is of the essence in a warehouse, but you don’t want speed to get in the way of doing your job well. Pallet flow racks have been built to make the work flow go much more quickly because they allow your employees to get pallets and keep going without hesitation or stopping.

Wastes Less Storage Space than Other Options

Storage space is at a premium in most any warehouse, and anything that saves space can be a huge help. These racks have been designed to help you stack more pallets vertically and keep them out of the way. Ease of access and extra storage space? That sounds like a win-win.

Safer Option for Storing and Getting Pallets

Safety is key when you’re in a warehouse, and it’s really important to take the time to find ways to keep the assembly and packaging lines as safe as they can be. Not only can you stack pallets higher with these, but it also holds everything in place in, preventing them from falling onto unsuspecting employees below. These racks add a new level of safety, making it easier for you to keep things in order and adhere to safety regulations and other concerns that may otherwise come up.

Find the new technologies out on the market and see what a big deal that it is for you to make considerations and see what there is for you to do in order to make a difference. Seek out the solutions, find out what others are doing, and know that you’ve got everything in order so that you can get the best results.

Wondering Whether You Should Start an Import/Export Business? Here’s What to Consider

You need something, you buy, borrow or acquire it one way or another. As long as there’s a population (which is growing very fast), trade will continue. Buying goods from one another is the essence of business in whatever form. When you need products that aren’t within your local country, they ah veto be exported, and the products are very many. The export and import business is lucrative. You bring in what people want, sell it via your supply chain and earn your returns. Simple, right? The simplicity lies in your business model, and if you are interested in the import and export trade, you need to up your game.

How to Start an Import/Export Business

Prepare yourself for a ton of logistics, and that is not all, you’ll have to come to terms with international economics and much more. It may be a great idea to possess an excellent background in business, international relations, and global finance. With such data, you are going to comprehend processes that you need to go through before you can sell or purchase a product from an overseas supplier. You need to possess knowledge that goes beyond borders. Some things like the price of any Export containers need to be at your fingertips.

  • Choose a business name and establish a website: Since the network is vital in the import and export business, you need to possess a perfect site that creates your global link. The main aim here is to balance the flow of correspondence, sell your products online or offline and build your customer base.
  • Settle on a product to import and export: Well, you cannot do everything in the export and import business; choose a product and settle on it.
  • Locate the appropriate market: Now that you possess a product, choose where you want to sell it. Utilize current trends in the sale of this product to spot the perfect market.
  • Set a price for the product: The price needs to be set based in the volume as well as the commission on that volume.
  • Locate customers for your business: You can do this via numerous means like SEO optimization and other physical means.
  • Create a safe logistics department: This will cater for transporting the products to where it needs to be so that it can be sold.

Which Business Model Is the Best? 

Well, in the export/import business, people typically charge based on a commission or a retainer. Via the commission structure, you get a percentage rate for any trade deal that you complete. On the other hand, if it is through a retainer, your client is going to pay you a monthly fee. There’s also an alternative model whereby you can simply purchase and sell goods and make a margin. When you figure that a certain product will be straightforward to sell, choose a commission model. Of course, a retainer would be more appropriate for products that are hard to sell. Those who are confident in their business skills, can go for the alternative model and take all the risks. The import/export business is quite impressive. After you get the hang of it, you will make a lot of money no matter what business model you settle on.

Five stacking tips for warehouse safety

Warehouse safety is important for several reasons. First, the health of employees is important. If they are frequently injured, soon there will be no one to work in the warehouse. The goods themselves are important, too, as they must be stored and moved without being broken or damaged.

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Sensible stacking

Sometimes you need to pile items high to fit them all in, but the heaviest items must always go on the bottom of the stack. You don’t want lighter items crushed by heavy loads, nor do you want them toppling over and injuring or killing people. Amazon has received some bad press for its warehouse practices. To learn more, see this report in The Guardian.

When stacking, the height of the stack should be noted. There are usually rules governing stack heights, and these should be observed to avoid accidents and breakages.

The right stack for the job

Different items may need to be stacked in different ways. Pay attention to the goods being stacked, and choose the right method for the safest result. Types of stacking include brick, block, pinwheel and plywood.

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Stack materials according to what they are and any hazards they may represent. For example, stack pipes upright so no one can trip over or collide with them. Lumber should be checked for nails that could damage goods or people.

As you stack, pallets should also be checked for damage. Identifying a pallet that is suffering from wear and tear and replacing it is always a better idea than letting a stack collapsing because the pallet has splintered or fallen apart. At the same time, keep an eye on the state of your shelving. It may need to be upgraded to cope with greater loads. If you want to find out more about options for shelving Ireland, you can start by consulting a reputable provider such as rackzone.ie/shelving/industrial-residential-shelving, where you can get advice and all the guidance you need on shelving Ireland.

Warehouse safety must always be viewed as a priority. By being vigilant in your maintenance and choosing materials that are made well and of good quality, many safety issues should be identified and rectified before they cause significant damage. Preventing accidents tends to cost less than clearing up the mess that they cause.

Coworking In Auckland – A Guide To Working Etiquette

New Zealand’s coworking spaces are as diverse as the country is with many spaces offering businesses a range of options from which to choose. Auckland, especially, is seeing a surge of new and different types of spaces offering assistance to digital nomads, non-profits, and an assortment of professionals. For professionals working in this environment, finding space to work is no problem.

In fact, one could argue the coworking model is a good fit for the New Zealander whose business culture is one that promotes respect and trust. The coworking space, conversely, provides a platform that encourages an already positive attitude for building business relationships. Those looking to join a coworking space in Auckland will find the guidelines for appropriate office behaviour align with the cultural attitude related to work.

Continue reading to learn more about kiwi working etiquette if you’re interested in coworking in Auckland.

Coworking Conversations

The coworking space provides ample opportunity for professionals to chat with others in the space. Just by virtue of the way these offices are organised, they encourage conversation. Workstations often place professionals in close proximity, and even if renting more private space, the chance to engage others in the space is ever present. Servcorp Coworking Auckland is a perfect example of how many coworking spaces promote social interaction.

At the same time, this proximity can also breed behaviours that can disrupt normal workflow. While a convivial atmosphere, the space is still a professional environment, so conversations that are too lively interfere with others in the space. If you are someone who loves the social part of coworking, keep conversations quiet, or better yet, if you feel the conversation is going to be lengthy consider taking it to one of the designated areas.

Respectful Boundaries

The coworking space is a public space, and because there are no walls, it is very easy to traverse other boundaries, and worse yet, crowd other’s space. Whether it is talking too loud at the workspace, borrowing other people’s paper clips, pens, staplers, etc., or helping yourself to other people’s unattended snacks, do not assume that everyone in the space welcomes your intrusions. If the person does not offer or you do not ask, then consider the item off limits until the person has offered it to you. While it might seem a trifling thing to quibble over, people traverse boundaries in a million ways before a big blow out occurs.

Clean Space

The great benefit to sharing space with others is it can create a comradery that engenders both friend and business relationships. In many cases, it also creates a bond among people who work in the space. At the same token, this same closeness can create a situation where people feel free to treat the space the same way they would treat personal space.

Leaving personal items behind, not discarding empty food cartons and packaging, and not making sure that the space is left clean can create annoyance among your coworking mates. While it might seem like common sense, treat the coworking space much like you would treat a conventional office. Personal items, including garbage, should be discarded at the end of the workday, and foods that might spill or are greasy should be eaten in a designated space, whether it is a lounge or a café. Ultimately, your coworking space is a great place to share because it does reflect professional space, and cleanliness contributes to this professionalism.

Finding Your Space

Because coworking spaces generally define their own character, you can find these enclaves to be very different in culture to each other. However, within this culture, many of them encourage inclusivity, which in turn builds opportunities for relationships. At the core of this idea is an office etiquette that emphasises respect for everyone in the space.