Tag Archives: business

Should You Improve Your Building’s Curb Appeal? Here Are 4 Reasons to Do So

modern building with high curb appealCurb appeal is the visual attractiveness of a property as seen from the street. A building that looks pleasing from outside will have a higher perceived value. This is often seen through a great commercial landscape. But how can curb appeal help your business?

First impressions usually last

The front part of your commercial space is what potential customers are going to see first. It can be off-putting if your property’s frontage looks barren, or worse, unkempt. This is where commercial landscaping services come in. These service providers recognize the need for a green, polished look on a property. In today’s competitive economy, attracting a customer can be challenging. So, if a place looks nice, people will be more attracted to it and will recall it long after. After all, the adage holds true: first impressions generally stick.

Going green

Not only does it make a space look attractive, landscaping is also good for the environment. Green spaces lower the temperature and improve air quality. Strategic planting also helps reduce soil erosion. Roots of plants and trees absorb 20 times more water than tilled soil.

Marketing strategy

A lot of companies know the value of having an eco-friendly philosophy as part of their corporate social responsibility program. Marketing your company as “green” or eco-friendly can broaden the support it gets from niche communities.

Employee productivity

A 2012 Harvard Business Review article revealed that even the most trivial issues can impact an employee’s productivity. Having a green space where they can spend a few minutes to relax alleviates stress. In turn, this makes for a more productive work environment.

These are a few ways that your commercial landscape can help your business become a safer and more attractive one. But, bear in mind that keeping a green landscape isn’t for aesthetic purposes only. You should do it for the betterment of your business’ community, too.

Fire Hazard: What You Can Do to Keep Employees and the Business Safe

Safety signs in the workplaceFires present three main hazards: lack of oxygen, smoke inhalation, and intense heat. It’s critical, therefore, to prevent its occurrence and to follow protocols that mitigate its effect.

Fire safety awareness is one of the ways to protect your workers and keep the business safe. Here are safety tips to reduce the risk of this hazardous incident:

1. Mount Safety Signs

Safety labels manufacturer, Clarion Safety Systems, shares that fire safety signs need constant visibility and they need to be recognizable from a distance. Your employees can’t afford to spend time finding the fire extinguishers or the exits in the event of a fire.

2. Declutter

Combustible items like paper, cardboard, and chemical materials can accumulate in the workplace. These items not only clutter your place of business, but they could also start fires. Built up waste only need a source of ignition to create an incident, destroying property and endangering your employees. Clear out the waste and unnecessary items to prevent a fire.

3. Perform Workplace Safety Checks and Maintenance

Conduct regular site maintenance and inspections. Check for wires, circuits, and other power sources that could cause short circuits and other electrical problems. Make sure that employees never overload circuits. Additionally, replace old components that could increase your business’s risk for fires.

4. Communicate Your Fire Safety Plan

Everyone in your company needs to know about the fire escape plan. They also need to know about fire drills. Do not underestimate the importance of having regular fire drills. Conducting these can help refresh your workers’ memory and will keep them alert and well informed on what to do in the event of a fire.

5. Replace Old Fire Extinguishers

Fire extinguishers provide your first line of defense against containing a fire. As such, it’s an essential device in the workplace. In replacing or recharging your fire extinguishers, you need to follow the National Fire Protection Association standards in replacing or recharging your fire extinguishers. Also, proper signage and labels to their location would be necessary.

Preparation is crucial to preventing and mitigating the impact of a fire. From mounting visible and recognizable signs to replacing fire extinguishers, make sure your workplace is well prepared.

Protecting Your Assets: 4 Crucial Strategies When Starting a Business

Business professionals signing on a dealWhen starting a business, you need to be aware of the possible risks. Keep in mind that you may need to make some adjustments from time to time. Even the most successful entrepreneurs have their ups and downs. Other than strengthening your marketing plans or improving your products and services, you should prepare to secure your assets.

Here are some strategies you can use to protect your assets:

  1. Determine Your Business Entity

Before anything else, you need to choose the right business entity. This is crucial, especially in filing taxes and applying for business permits. Many experts recommend registering your business as a Limited Liability Company (LLC). Unlike in sole proprietorship, you don’t have to expose your assets completely.

To be safe, you may want to consult a professional. Look for law firms that offer asset protection services in Utah. Professionals will help you determine the best business type and take care of all the paperwork.

  1. Document Everything

It is important to keep records, contracts, and other important documents. Make sure you have copies of all transactions as well. This will help you in case someone filed a lawsuit against your business. In addition, consider having separate bank accounts, checkbooks, and even online banking profiles, such as PayPal or Payoneer.

Never make business transactions using your personal account. Always maintain corporate records exclusively and log the minutes when doing audits with your accountant.

  1. Follow Standard Contracts and Procedures

Even if you’re working with a friend or your relatives, it is advisable to follow the standard protocol for all the expenses. There should always be a written contract for every business expense, including the office rent, equipment titles, and other projects. Make sure you’re dealing with licensed contractors and suppliers. They should always issue official receipts for every transaction.

  1. Look for Appropriate Business Insurance

Business insurance can be a good investment and should be on top of the list for your startup budget. Just be sure to review the policy and coverage. If necessary, consult a professional to check the terms and conditions.

Knowing the possible risks will help you prepare better solutions for the future. As they say, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

How Much Does it Cost to Franchise Your Business?

A group discussing cost of franchisingFranchising is a great way to start a popular business without having to handle all the marketing and brand building. All you have to do is meet the franchiser’s stringent requirement and have the money needed to buy the franchise.

So how much does it cost to franchise your business?

The quick answer is the cost varies depending on your business. Some franchises can run from your home, others need specialized equipment to run. The differences in business operation will always determine how much you need to set up the business.

In addition to this, you will spend a great deal of money on legal costs and quality control reports. Legal paperwork involves:

  • Filling franchise agreement documents
  • Going through and implementing trademark protection policies
  • Going through and understanding the license agreement

There’s More to it Than Franchise Fees

Even though most new entrepreneurs focus on the franchise fee, there are other important costs that will contribute to the total amount needed to franchise. The franchise fee just covers the charges you need to enter the franchise system. You will still need to pay for:

  • Office space, supplies and equipment
  • Industry-specific appliances or equipment
  • Décor and signage for the business premises
  • Legal, licensing, accounting and other support staff fees
  • Insurance and taxes
  • The first opening marketing push
  • Initial inventory and petty cash to push you through the first months

It’s hard to estimate a franchising figure without applying the above facts to the business. For instance, $2,000 might be enough to franchise a cruise planner’s business while $60,000,000 is the absolute minimum you need to franchise a 300-room Hilton hotel.

The best way to know how much you will spend setting up your franchise business is to do specific case studies. Look for the actual costs to franchise the business you want, go through the requirements and use that to make a more accurate cost estimation.

 

Avoid Recruitment Pitfalls: Hire a Financial Recruitment Agency

HR manager interviewing young man in officeRecruitment is a crucial process in every organisation. It can be quite tedious if not well handled and also very costly if you do not get the right resource for the vacant position. Consequently, companies now seek the services of recruitment agencies due to the intensity required in the recruitment process.

Some roles and positions require technical knowledge, and a professional handling the hiring process such as those positions in the financial services and accounting would be best. Financial recruitment agencies can do this for you.

Prioritising Client’s Needs

You want to engage a service provider that has your interests at heart. The client’s needs ought to be a priority in any recruiting process. You want to consider an agency that understands your needs as a client and goes out of its way to get the best candidate to fill in the position.

By comparing your needs to candidates’ profiles, a financial recruiting agency will adequately offer you excellent matches to fill vacant positions. A reputable recruiting firm should, therefore, ensure it does it right the first time.

Holistic Vetting Process

A team of recruiters can identify the best talent in a pool of candidates. Identifying the best talent needs rigorous interviews from three or more recruiters. They would recognise the qualities that the candidate has that matches with the client’s needs.

Competency

Specialisation is key when conducting recruitments. Caution needs to be exercised to ensure only that proficient candidates are hired. Experience, professionalism, and skill should be what any hiring staff should know.

Technological Inclusion

You similarly want to consider a firm that embraces technology in its hiring process. Information Technology (IT) systems such as web-based psychological tests embrace modern hiring regimens that are more accurate, consistent and swift.

Efficiency

A recruiting approach that achieves high levels of efficiency guarantees a smooth transition without disrupting the day to day operations of an organisation. You need to ensure the recruiting firm fills your vacancy with a candidate promptly without affecting your operations.

Staffing should no longer be a bother to you. With a Financial Recruitment firm that has efficient staff, an efficient online recruitment system, and a holistic vetting process that prioritises your needs, you are guaranteed of finding the right candidate for you.

Opening a Beauty Salon: 4 Ways to Prepare

Beauty Salon Owner with Employee and Customers in the backgroundDue to everyone’s obsession with their own looks, a beauty salon is one of the top business ventures that entrepreneurs can engage in. A beauty shop can help clients feel good about themselves and impress other people.

If you are planning to open a beauty salon, the following tips will teach you how to prepare:

Attend a cosmetology school

If you want to open a beauty salon, you must have the technical expertise regarding the different services offered by most of the popular salons in town. Consider enrolling in a cosmetology school in Salt Lake City. This could be a good first step towards success. It may take a few months to a year to finish, but the investment is definitely worth it.

Obtain financing for the business

Any business must have adequate financing before it can even start. If you don’t have enough cash, approach a financial institution and apply for a loan.

Choose an ideal location

An ideal location for a beauty salon is somewhere that is not too crowded but has a reasonable amount of foot traffic. It must also be visible and properly designed to stand out. In most cases, the location determines the success or failure of a business.

Hire experienced beauticians

The beauticians will be working with your clients, so they must have adequate skills and experience in the field. If possible, they must have taken cosmetology courses in a reputable beauty school.

For beauty salons to become successful, there should be a combination of experience and good customer service. If beauty salon owners and their staff will be able to satisfy their clients, they can enjoy a steady stream of income and an established customer base.

The Many Benefits of Startup Business Loans

Businessman pressing a Business Loan concept button. Instagram styling applied.Turning an innovative idea into a business is easier than ever. Thanks to the Internet, anyone savvy enough can market products and services and become a successful entrepreneur. The real challenge, though, is taking your venture to the next level. If you believe and can prove that it can be more profitable down the road, you need extra capital to scale up your production.

Fortunately, there are many ways to beef up your coffers. Many founders behind early-stage startups court investors, but TAB Bank noted that some are more willing to take the risks involved in obtaining a loan from a reputable bank.

Here are the notable advantages of online startup business loans overseed and Series A rounds:

No Equity Sacrifice

By and large, banks wouldn’t take a share of your business. They only want to make money from the deal through interest, which means you get to own 100% of your startup after the deal. If your venture becomes financially sustainable in the long run, you’d reap all of the potential rewards for yourself alone. You may eventually have to reach out to investors for further growth, but a loan could make your business more valuable by then.

Low Interest

Many bank startup loans come with low interest. Non-traditional lenders usually charge higher rates since they tend to work with unconventional borrowers. Of course, the amount of interest you could get depends on how risky your venture is. But if you show that you have it all figured out, you’d find a bank that’s comfortable to lend you money with a favorable interest. Plus, you could enjoy tax benefits from the interest you pay over the lifetime of your loan.

Fast Process

Securing a loan from a bank you’ve had a positive history with is simpler. Of course, many other factors could affect the speed of your application. Startups with a decent track record generally obtain loans faster than businesses that are not yet up and running.

In business, everything involves some form of risk. The key is to take a 360-degree evaluation of your venture to see the best source of funding you should seek. If you feel securing a business loan makes sense for your situation, and you qualify for one, don’t pass up on this great opportunity.

New Jobs and Technology: The Future of the IT Industry in the UK

Team of programmers collaboratingThe IT industry in the UK plays an important role in the growth of the economy. It increases the GDP of the UK by creating employment opportunities in an evolving industry. More and more graduates of IT-related courses are applying for new jobs in the industry. Not only does the industry require IT graduates, but they also need graduates with knowledge and training in business-related courses such as management, marketing, finance and more.

Many companies in the UK offer IT-related positions. ALLTEKS Ltd, a Kent-based IT company, provides job opportunities in IT support and disaster recovery solutions to talented IT graduates in the UK. The company provides their services to businesses across the UK who need IT solutions.

UK’s IT Sector

With each passing day, more and more opportunities are being offered to IT graduates. Game development, multimedia programming and cyber security are some IT positions being offered in the UK. These innovative IT-related jobs enhance the growth of the IT sector in the UK. With technology advancing each day, who knows what else is in store for the future of information technology.

Future Information Technology

One of the fastest growing areas in the IT industry is cloud technology. Many UK businesses are storing enormous amounts of data on cloud-based technology. Cloud storage lessens the need for big company expenses, and it easily allows companies to upgrade or downsize their storage systems. In the near future, we are likely to see more information stored in the cloud rather than our PCs or laptops.

The IT industry is also being affected by the rise of mobile devices. Future IT-related jobs may be using their smartphones to program, process or monitor data for future IT software. A simple swipe or touch of the screen can achieve numerous tasks; what can it do for the IT industry? We won’t have to wait too long to see what technology has in store for us.

 

How to Enhance Workplace Safety and Productivity

HR presenting a contract

In the face of increasing competition in a cutthroat market, the last thing you need in your company is under-performing employees. Instead, you need all hands on deck as you try to grow your sales and increase your market share.

In addition to hiring qualified workers, you have to go the extra mile and ensure they have a safe working environment. Numerous studies show a great connection between labour productivity and workplace safety.

Carry out an Assessment

You only get to keep your employees safe if you can identify the potential sources of danger. Carrying out a safety assessment is the easiest way to identify areas and situations that pose a risk to your workforce. As such, you need to examine all stages of your production line for weaknesses.

Wet and slippery floors are also a possible source of danger for your employees. The same case applies to chairs and desks with poor ergonometric designs. Although it is easy to overlook back pains and carpal tunnel, they can take a toll on your productivity.

A high level of such incidences would lead to a spike in the number taking time off to seek medical attention. It would also result in a spike in the cost of your medical health coverage.

Institute Proper Corrective Measures

On top of avoiding physical injuries such as cuts, bruises, and broken bones, you also need to eliminate conditions that lead to poor health. Poor sanitary conditions and improper waste disposal increase the chances of suffering a disease outbreak.

Hence, you should make an effort to uphold proper hygiene and ventilation standards. If your workers stand for long periods, consider laying out a rubber safety mat around their stations. Such mats provide soft cushions for your employees making them comfortable while eliminating joint pains.
That way you get to improve productivity and lower absenteeism due to poor health.

The key to a successful business practice is keeping the production levels high. Keeping your workers safe and comfortable is a sure way to maintain the production levels high.

It’s All About the Work: Choosing Your Business’s Creative Partner

Design Studio in SydneyRunning a business is not just about figures, logistics, and other hard items. It’s also about creativity. This holds true for the marketing and advertising aspect of the business. And when it comes to these things, you’ll need to think outside the box.

It pays that you work with a reliable creative partner, such as a design studio in Sydney like Digital Ads International Pty Ltd or an advertising agency. They’ll help you make your brand good. More importantly, they’ll help you establish a meaningful relationship with your customers.

Below are some things you need to take into account when picking a creative partner for your business:

What Can They Do?

The first thing you need to do is come up with a list of potential providers. They can be recommendations from friends or someone you’ve come across somewhere. After that, look at their portfolio and find out which company offers complete and integrated solutions. For your reference, an ideal provider must offer the following: creative campaign services (above-the-line, below-the-line, digital), branding, and technical solutions, such as web development and SEO.

Have You Seen Their Portfolio?

It’s not enough that you know what your prospective provider can do. It’s equally important that you know how they do it. To give you an idea, you must look at the portfolio of works. Check out their case studies. If you can, get in touch with their previous clients and ask them about their experience with the provider.

Have You Considered Cost?

Creativity and design come with a cost. As such, it’s important to find out if the creative firm offers different packages that will suit your budget. If none of the packages falls within your requirements, you should be willing to negotiate.

Creativity and design are an important part of any business’s branding and identity. Never settle for less; you ought to find the right partner.