Affordable Ways To Get Your Business Noticed

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One of the most difficult parts of running a business is getting your name out there. While some larger companies resort to elaborate branding campaigns or glitzy launch parties, getting your business noticed doesn’t have to cost the earth. The internet has opened up a range of opportunities for businesses of all type to grow at warp speed if you know the best ways in which to harness it.

Here are just a few affordable ways of getting your business noticed.

Utilize Social Media

While many businesses have social media accounts, few use them to their full potential. As well as promoting your services, you should also use these accounts to engage with your customers directly. Try to post interesting stories and links to any blogs you have written, encouraging people to get involved with their own feedback and thoughts. As well as Facebook and Twitter, you should think about engaging with Instagram and other social media which may be relevant to your business. This may give you an opportunity to tap into new markets which you had previously missed out on.

Create Fresh Content

You should have a blog on which you post sharable content on a regular basis, remembering to post these links on social media. Rather that sharing bland content, try to engage with current trends, solve problems and post offers and competitions. Anything that gets people involved and brings you in more followers can only be a positive thing. As well as this, it is extremely important for the SEO of your website to post fresh content on a regular basis. You should also try to contribute guest blogs on other established websites. Not only have these got a stronger chance of being read, you can also include backlinks which are central to boosting your rankings.

Branding

It’s not essential that you spend thousands upon thousands on a rebranding exercise, but you should make sure your brand is consistent throughout all your materials. Always refer to your business the same way, and make sure to use your logo and colour scheme throughout everything. Remember to always clearly display your contact information. If you’re looking to impress, consider a virtual office in the heart of London available through www.hoxtonmix.com.  Your business should have a distinctive tone of voice which you should use throughout all materials.

Make SEO A Focus

We’ve already mentioned what a major impact SEO has on the modern business, but this really cannot be overstated. It’s worth hiring an expert to give your website a thorough review to find out any ways in which it could be improved. We’ve already talked about the importance of creating fresh content and gaining backlinks. However, you should avoid paying for backlinks as you can end up being ranked negatively as a result.

 

These pieces of advice are just a few affordable tips that you can implement to considerably improve your chances of getting your business noticed and helping it to grow.

Bringing Your Manufacturing Home

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With economic globalization taking a massive hit, countries are looking for new ways to support their own economies from home. This is to lower reliance on other countries when it comes to the products that we use. With this, businesses are presented with a great opportunity. Manufacturing is one of the biggest areas that governments want to be in their borders. So, a lot of governments will soon be rolling out incentives for small businesses to be making their products at home. Jumping on this bandwagon before it leaves is a great way to ensure success for your business. And, to help you out, this post will be going through three of the main elements you need to start your own factory.

Of course, factories are never small. So, you’re going to need a decently sized property. Thankfully, with loads of factories having closed within a lot of countries, there are loads of options available at low prices. You just have to find one that will suit your business well. Make sure that it’s within a good distance of a densely populated area. This will ensure that you have access to plenty of staff members. You also need to make sure that the building is suitable for the type of manufacturing you’re going to be doing. This will be highly dependent on the type of business you’re running, so you need to figure this part out for yourself. But, the tools you will be using will play a big part in helping you to decide.

Next, you need to think about the equipment you’ll need and how you’re going to source it. This will be from small things like pens right up to big items like waste disposal units. You can’t just think about your main processes here; you have to think about everything. For instance, if you plan to move boxes from one side of the factory to the other, you may need a few forklifts to get the job done. Sourcing things like this will require getting in touch with some specialists. For a lot of equipment, you won’t be able to find reviews online. So, you’ll have to rely on what the salesman has to say. Of course, you can always try to find some reviews, though.

Once you have a load of heavy machinery, you need people to operate it. It’s wise when you first open something like a factory to have a large portion of your employees be experienced. This will ensure that they have the knowledge to complete the jobs you have for them. And, anyone without experience will be able to learn from the more senior staff. Over time, you can look at hiring more people with less experience. But, to start with, it’s good to have as much know-how at your disposal as possible. You can use a staff agency to help you find the manpower you need to get your work done.

This should give you a good idea of what goes into starting your own factory. There’s a lot of work to be done in something like this. And, it’s worth doing plenty of research to make sure that you do it correctly.

Banishing the Darkness on Your Business Premises

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When it comes to setting up a business, there are far too many things to consider and it doesn’t make sense to try and do it yourself. Yes, it’s understandable if you are just a new business owner and you want to learn as you go along, but that doesn’t mean you need to start a business blind and run into problems that may or may not ruin your business.

Something that very few owners think about when it comes to setting up business premises is the idea of proper lighting. When you do home improvements, lighting is often something you think about. You might think about lighting up a specific part of the room, you could contemplate diffused lighting to make certain areas of your home look warmer and you might also think about the different colours you can get for your bulbs. Sadly, the same level of care is rarely put into a business, but this article is going to fix that.

Highlighting Your Products

Lights are naturals at showcasing products. When a beam of light shines down on one of your products, it’s automatically highlighted and people all over your store will be able to see it. It almost becomes a centrepiece in your business, people think that it’s a premium product or very important, and it’s even better if the surface of the object is shiny so that it reflects light. Highlighting your best products is important because it gives your customers a sense of urgency when buying something.

Protecting Your Business

This isn’t something many people think about, but lights can actually help to protect your business. The more dark areas there are in your business or around your premises, the more likely you will be a target of burglary or thieves. If there’s a dark corner of your business that is hard to see with CCTV cameras, then you probably won’t be able to see the face of thieves as they steal your products.

People usually say that to protect your business you need to use things like detectors at the entrance and exit of your store, or you need to lock things behind shelves, but that’s not always possible for something like a grocery store. If you are worried about people breaking in at night, you can install some LED lightings around the premises and illuminate your surroundings. This makes it easier to spot thieves on CCTV and it also deters them because they have less room to maneuver and fewer objects to conceal themselves behind.

Setting the Mood

Depending on what type of business you run, you could completely change the mood of your business with some well-replaced lighting. If you’re running a modern hotel, then mood lighting around the bed and diffused lighting to make a room seem warm and comforting are going to make all the different in establishing a relaxed environment for your guests to stay in. If you run something like a library, then the lights need to be bright enough to allow people to read and study in comfort.

The Social Media Hacks that Will Boost Your Business

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Social media has revolutionized the way business owners can interact with customers and market their products and services. Sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are huge platforms that can deliver real results if they are used correctly.

Here are some simple social media hacks, which if implemented will boost your business:

Keep Up to Date with What’s Hot

If you want people to pay attention to your social media accounts, you need to know what is hot and what is not in your particular niche and to your target demographic. If you are posting out of date, irrelevant content, few readers will come back for a second go and you will be missing out on the opportunity to sell to them.

Utilize as Many Sites as Possible

Facebook and Twitter might be the big guns, but websites like Instagram and Pinterest are hot on their heels, and in many cases, are even better at spreading the word about your company, engaging readers and making sales, depending on who you are trying to target. Instagram, for example, is great for targeting young, creative types, whilst Facebook can be used more generally – target your posts to the right sites and you cannot fail.

Increase Your Reach

Reaching as many people as possible is crucial if you want to run a successful social media campaign. Luckily, there are many things you can do to increase your reach. For example, you could run a competition to encourage likes and follows on Facebook, or if you could use a service like the one here to increase comments follows and shares. Of course, the most important thing you can do to increase your reach is create valuable content that people will be happy to share for no other reason than it is useful, interesting or valuable.

Hire a Social Media Manager

If you have the money to do so, it is well worth investing in a dedicated social media manager, whose job it is to write and publish regular content on a range of platforms. The more engaged you are with your demographic, the more invested they will be in your company, and this should convert to more sales, so on time, a good social media manager will pay for themselves.

Engage with Your Followers

There is absolutely no point amassing thousands of followers if you do little to engage with them. The companies who most successfully use social media to their advantage are the ones who take time to answer customer questions, run competitions, engage in witty banter and generally have fun with their follower, rather than just trying to sell to them all the time.

Embrace Change

The world of social media changes so fast that you have to be ready to change your strategy and learn new ways of connecting all the time. For example, Facebook recently added an option to live stream videos. Businesses who learn how to use this to their advantage by offering on the spot streaming competitions, giveaways, like the ones here,on and viral marketing will do much better than those who fastidiously stick to text-based posts.

If you take the time to set up social media accounts, make sure you also take the time to engage your followers and strike up a mutually beneficial relationship and you will soon find social media working for you!

Vital Factors That Production Businesses Have To Get Right

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Many different factors can contribute to the success of a production or manufacturing business. But there are also a set of elements that are vital to its survival – get them wrong, and you might find that your fledgeling company struggles to get off the ground. In today’s guide, we’re going to take a look at the vital elements that all production businesses need to get right – without exception. Let’s take a look at everything you need to know.

A market

Without a market for your product or service, failure is a certainty. You have to go through a thorough period of market research to ensure consumers want, need, or are attracted by your product or service. What you create might press all your buttons, but if it doesn’t do the same for anyone else, you will sink without a trace. Get your market research right, however, and you might just have yourself a viable manufacturing business.

Compliance

Production and manufacturing businesses have a lot of inherent dangers within them, which is why there are so many rules and regulations about how you create, sell and market a product. Any failure to comply with federal and state regulations will result in one of several things: hefty fines, PR disasters, or closure. Do not go into the production business without understanding all of your responsibilities.

Quality control

Quality control is another essential area of production where there is no room for mistakes. It is vital that you invest money into testing equipment. Take a production business that uses lots of liquid – the food industry, for example. According to Process Sensors, there is a lot to think about, from moisture measurement through to chemical checks. Invest in people, too – employees that are responsible for all aspects of quality control and safety or stress testing are essential to protecting your business interests.

A fantastic team

As a production business, your reputation will depend on the employees you hire. These are the people that will be creating and producing huge volumes of different products, so you’ll be looking for highly relevant skill sets, loyalty, and expertise. Avoid taking the low-cost employee route, as it will only end up causing your problems in the future.

Secured capital

Setting up a manufacturing or production business isn’t something you can do with a few dollars you find down the back of the couch. It costs a significant sum of money to get started in the industry, and you will need to secure plenty of capital. A factory space will be necessary, as will the equipment you need to fill it. Production companies are also renowned for needing plenty of people, even if your manufacturing process is almost fully automated.

A robust marketing plan

Finally, make sure that you are getting out there and making noise about your company. No business will survive without a solid marketing strategy, so ensure you have one in place. An online presence is an absolute necessity these days, and you can also find new customers and clients on social media platforms like Facebook and Linkedin.

OK, so there you have it – have we missed any important factors? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

Gadgets & Gizmos Modern Businesses Can’t Function Without

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In today’s modern world, it’s hard to imagine how anyone, let alone businesses, functioned before the rise of new technology. Technology has altered the world in many ways, changing the way that we lead our lives, and also, how society functions. It’s incredible that in such a short period of time, so much can change and evolve, especially in industries such as the business sector.

Today, there are many gadgets and gizmos that modern businesses just couldn’t function without. In the 90’s it was photocopiers and basic computers, today there’s a lot more than that making running a business easier and less stressful. The question is, what are the pieces of technology that modern businesses just couldn’t function without? Let’s find out.

Voice recorders

Business meetings seem to go by in a blink of an eye with so much being said that it can be difficult at times to take everything in. To ensure that nothing gets missed, many business owners choose to use voice recorders to keep track of what’s being said in meetings. Obviously, if a voice recorder is being used, it’s important to make everyone in the meeting aware of it. If you don’t already have a voice recorder and think it would be useful for using in meetings, they are available at Spy Centre, as well as on sites like Amazon and eBay.

Cloud storage

Okay, so not technically a gadget or gizmo, but cloud storage is, without a doubt, one of the pieces of tech that modern businesses could not function without. Not only does cloud storage provide secure online storage for documents and data, but it also makes sharing information with employees quicker and easier. One cloud account could give your entire company access to a range of files, reducing the amount of time spent sharing documents and data via email, and also reducing the cost of printing information out, making your company greener.

Tablets and smartphones

It’s no secret that tablets and smartphones have become a vital part of daily life for the majority of people, but what about businesses? The truth is that many businesses could not function without the use of smartphones and tablets, especially since they can now do pretty much everything that a computer or laptop can. From writing emails to managing your business accounts, smartphones and tablets have made running a business, especially when on the go, much easier, and so, today many business owners couldn’t live without these crucial gadgets.

Portable phone chargers

Although a phone charger could just be taken out and about with you, it’s not always practical to plug it in and start charging a smartphone up. Hence why portable phone chargers (there are also portable laptop and tablet ones too) are so useful. Whether you’re commuting and your phone is about to die, or you’re in a meeting, and your laptop has little battery, a portable charger could be a lifesaver.

The importance of gadgets and gizmos for businesses is undeniable – many businesses could no longer function without many of the vital pieces of tech mentioned above.

How To Get Returning Customers

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It’s easy to forget about your customers once they’ve paid their bill and left the door, but a good business will find ways to focus on its customers in and out of the store. Every store needs return customers to keep business ticking over throughout the year. Employ some of the following tricks of the trade and you’ll soon be seeing regular faces (so much so, you may even get sick of them!).

Get to know your customers

No customer likes to feel like they’re just another pay cheque on a conveyor belt. Get to know customers by engaging in small talk during non-busy periods. You’ll connect with them on a personal level, which will encourage them to come back. Invite people to open up about themselves by letting them know about you and your business background. Some regulars may develop such a rapport that they’ll become advocates for your business, coming in with their own friends and families and effectively marketing your business for you.

Encourage customer feedback

Customer feedback can make happy customers reflect on their good experience and remind them to come back, whilst it can also allow unhappy customers to vent their bad feelings and allow you to entice them back through promotional deals and apologies. Not everyone will tell you how they feel face-to-face, so encourage written feedback cards or online reviews. If you have customers’ emails you can even send them feedback forms to fill in privately. There are many types of online reputation management software such as RenegadeWorks that can keep you on top of online reviews – good and bad – whilst also encouraging more conversation on places such as social media.

Introduce loyalty schemes

A loyalty scheme encourages customers to return by giving them a reward after a certain amount of visits or money that has been spent. This could include a points card that gives you a discount after a certain amount of uses, or a loyalty card that gives you a free drink after having bought a certain amount. People love freebies and discounts, so give them this as an incentive.

Keep previous customers updated

Remind previous customers that you’re still there by constantly advertising new deals and changes. You can do this with outdoor signage, by advertising in local news outlets, by telling people on social media and by emailing customers with news (if you have their email address). If you offer a delivery service, you may even be able to post a leaflet through their door (a thank you note to loyal customers can go a long way – especially if it comes with voucher or some kind of complementary treat).

Beat the competition

You may lose some customers to competition, in which case you need to win them back by beating the deals offered by these rival businesses. Competition can be healthy if you’re a good sport about it. Keep tabs on competitive business and either try to outdo what they’re offering, or make yourself stand out by offering a promotion on something unique to you.

Legal Troubles You Don’t Need Troubling Your Business

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Starting a small business can be demanding enough. You have to take your knowledge of the industry and, from it, grow a knowledge of the market, of marketing, of customer service and all the different gears that keep the business running. But it’s also essential you know the law since it’s one of the aspects of business that can be most damaging when you get it wrong. Let’s take a look at some of the most major concerns you need to have with the law as a business owner.

Health & safety

Your responsibility for the safety of the working premises is one of your most important since it directly influences the well-being of other people, mostly your employees and customers. It’s also one of the most common ways to find your business in legal trouble. This isn’t because a lot of business owners aren’t concerned about things like fire risks and tripping hazards, however. More often than not, it’s because they have failed to consider something that they didn’t realize was their responsibility. Health and safety rules cover all kinds of risks, from accidents to environmental health impacts like ventilation and noise. Make sure you brush up on not only the most obvious risks, but all that fall under your legal obligations.

Labour

How you use and treat your workforce matters in a lot of different ways. One of the most important rights of an employee is their right to fair pay in fair terms. This means that a late cheque or invoice that breaks your obligatory statement of terms of employment can give someone reason to pursue legal action against your business. Holidays, bank holidays, sickness, training needs, and the right to ask for flexible working conditions are all covered by those rights as well. But it’s not just about making sure you meet your employees’ rights but ensuring the responsible use of unpaid interns and volunteers as well. They each have their own labour laws that you need to ensure you cover.

Discrimination and harassment

Where malicious behavior and discrimination against people of certain ages, genders, races, disability and so on can be argued, your business is at more risk than ever. The damage to the public image as well as the legal charges can easily cause any business to struggle. You shouldn’t only codify how you treat cases of interpersonal harassment within the workplace. You should make sure that you are not vulnerable to cases of institutional discrimination, like a gender pay gap within the business. Whether you mean to be part of that kind of discriminatory practice will not matter if it’s proven that you are. From now one, things like the pay gap will have to be reported annually, so it’s best to ensure that you are treating employees as equally as possible in all manners.

Disgruntled employees

When you’ve done nothing wrong, you should have nothing to fear. However, if you terminate an employee or take disciplinary action that they feel is biased against them, that might not necessarily matter. Disgruntled employees can just as easily be those behind a discrimination or harassment claim as those who have genuine grievances. Your best protection against disgruntled employees is to take in-depth notes of employee interactions. From the recognition of issues at work to any corrective or disciplinary measures to the content and context of meetings themselves. This evidence is crucial to show that discrimination is not a contributing factor in your actions. A disgruntled employee, when they can’t take legal action, may choose to take public action instead, attacking the reputation of the business. In those cases, you might be able to launch your own action based on claims of defamation.

Disgruntled customers

If your customers are displeased, you might also find yourself in for a legal fight there. It’s not about cases where customers aren’t happy about their product, but rather it’s about cases where their consumer rights have been violated. Every business owner needs to understand the in-depth facts on consumer rights. From their right to clear advertising free of misleading material to their right to goods that are satisfactory quality. Recently, laws have expanded to include digital goods, too, so even if your business runs solely in the digital world, you need to make sure you’re not inadvertently stepping on consumer rights.

There are a lot more legal factors to consider than just the ones mentioned above. Many of them will be industry specific, for instance. But these are some of the most common ways a business can find itself in legal hot water. Make sure you’ve got yourself covered from every angle or it could cost you the business if you’re not careful.

Saying “Thank You” To Your Team Doesn’t Have To Be Difficult

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The people who work at startups are invariably hard working and dedicated to the cause. They have to be: after all, nobody else is going to get the money rolling in. As a result, it’s a good idea for bosses to show a bit of gratitude for what their teams have put in, besides their paychecks. Here are some ways you can say “thank you” to year team for all the hard work they do.

Let Them Choose What Project To Work On Next

The startup bosses that tend to succeed are those who are best at delegating activities to their team. Bosses can’t do everything: nor should they.

Sometimes a good way to reward your team and to show that you trust them is to allow them to pick their next move., Often the people working in your company will have a better idea of what needs to be done next than you do, so this can often be a win-win situation. Giving employees more autonomy is a surefire way to improve morale in your organization and get people fired up for the work that they are doing.

Plan A Team Happy Hour

Happy hours can involve anything, from cooking to paintballing, so long as they are fun. Organizing a happy hour after work is a surefire way to get your team to know each other better in a social setting, improving their overall commitment to each other and your business.

You can also use happy hours to create something together with your team, like a painting you can put up in the office, or a slap up meal everybody can enjoy together.

Give Them Their Holidays

Nothing is more annoying or more damaging to morale than having to work on the holidays. This is why it is so important for startups to use a staff holiday planner to make sure that they adequately arrange for absences in the future. Get your employees to plan their vacation time with you early on in the year (now is a good time) so that they don’t end up disappointed later on when they find out that they’ve missed the boat to book time off. Make sure that they know you’re doing everything you can to ensure that they have time off they deserve with their families.

Write A Letter

Letter writing is seen as old-fashioned these days, especially in the working environment. As a result, when somebody receives a handwritten note, thanking them for all their hard work, it has a giant effect. Handwritten notes are way more effective than emails or instant messages over Slack.

Acknowledge Individuals In Your Newsletter

The best leaders are quick to recognize all the people who have helped them achieve their goals. Plus, they understand the role of incentives, and how public praise can help others strive harder and achieve more in their own work. This is why it’s such a good idea to send out company-wide newsletters thanking individuals personally for all their hard work. Whether it’s helping make a project a success, or simply being there for other team members when things got tough, it’s worth acknowledging this at the company level.

Have You Made These Marketing Mistakes?

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We all make mistakes, but in marketing, it can be the difference between winning over a large group of customers and failing to make any sort of impression. It may mean that your startup never find a footing on the market and drops out of the running within the first year. If you want the solution, you just need to be aware of some of the most common errors and then dodge them completely.

Simplifying SEO

Simplifying SEO is a rookie mistake, but it’s one that is quite common on the market. If you do this, you are likely to earn yourself a Google penalty at worst and very little results at best. You won’t get very far using keywords and links as your only form of marketing. SEO has expanded a lot since those days of simplistic marketing. Instead, you need to think about social media, content production and even re-marketing.

Forgetting To Target

Anything that you release related to content and marketing should be targeted. What this means is that you need to know the type of individual who is going to be most interested in your content or products. If you have this information, you should easily be able to get large sales numbers straight out the gate.

Forgetting Images And Video

Remember, one of the worst things you can do with your content is making is a blank wall of text. This will make it look terribly bland and can be boring for readers or users online. As such, you do need to fit images and videos in, selecting them carefully. You may also want to think about optimizing any images you use. The infographic that follows has more information on this.


By Digitalico Agency

Survival Of The Fittest

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In a world saturated by competition, it can be the little things that make you stand out from the crowd. Sure, your product or service needs to top notch, the quality un-compromised and your customer service a real focus, one that you maintain at all times. But given all your competition will be placing an emphasis in the same places, start making sure you have the little things done to a high standard too. It is the little things, the little details, that will make you seem that much more professional. That’s how to make your brand completely watertight, and encourage your new and existing customers to do business with you.

Website

This is going to be your most active ambassador. This is going to be your first impression to new clients or customers and the go to place for current ones; the place they will go to see if you are offering anything new. As such, you need to make sure your website is the best representative it can possibly be. It needs to detail what you offer in a smart and professional way that also calls for a touch of personality, and that includes your domain name. Make sure you have a dot com if you can. No .wordpress or .tumblr. These will make you seem amateur.

Email

There is no point in having a snazzy website with all the bells and whistles if your email is going to let you down and give the game away. Your website is there to hook clients and customers. It is there as a landing page from which they can buy from you or contact you. So make sure you have a business email and not a [at] hotmail.com. This will put some doubt in their mind as to whether you are really as professional as you claim to be.

Office

It doesn’t matter if you have an office at home, in your garden, in a business park or on the 18th floor of a skyscraper; it needs to be professional. That means employing office cleaners, giving a place a new lick of paint, having some indoor plants dotted around the place, a seating area and maybe your company logo on the wall. If you are unsure of what you need to take this step up, why not make notes of everything you like the next time you have a meeting at someone else’s office space. Equally, why not make a note of everything you don’t like too.

Cards

A surefire way to look unprofessional is to be unprepared on the business card front. It could be that you are out a dinner party, or in the pub, or at a networking event when you start talking business, only to be asked for your business card, except you don’t have one. You will see i in their face. They’ll go from intrigues and excited to skeptical. So make sure you have some professional-looking business cards at hand.

Just In Time! How To Save Time At Work

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Streamline Your Processes

If you want to save time at work, you need to figure out where exactly you can get that time. Often, refining processes that are already going on in your office can help you get a few minutes back. For example, try holding meetings where you’re all standing up – it’s been proven that they don’t last as long. You could also think about how many people have to approve each thing that more junior employees do. Consider changing the hierarchy and giving them more of your trust and therefore more responsibilities so fewer people have to sign off on their work.

Trust Your Staff

A lot of people advise that if you want to save time at work, you should ask your staff to fill in timesheets so you can see where exactly they’re using their time and what they’re doing almost every minute of the day. However, timesheets are not something that many trusting bosses would ask their staff to fill in – on the contrary, make sure that you give your employees regular breaks so that they feel refreshed and enthusiastic about coming to work. Lethargy and monotony are much worse for productivity in the workplace than a few breaks. Trying to monitor your staff too closely will ruin your relationships with them and their loyalty to your company in the end.

Update Your Technology

It’s important to remember that technology keeps changing all the time and a lot of the new technology that’s produced can help you to save time. If you’re not completely sure about what you need, it’s a good idea to talk to an IT services company that can help you decide what exactly is right for your business.

Close Your Emails

When you’re doing a task that you really want to focus on, have you ever considered closing down Outlook for an hour or so and fully focusing on the task at hand instead? It’s so easy to get distracted by other tasks if you can constantly see new emails pinging into your inbox in the corner of your screen and in the end you might just find that each task takes you longer than it needs to. Make sure that someone else monitors the company’s social media in that time.

Go Paperless

If you really want to shave some extra time off your work day, why not consider going paperless? It’ll dramatically reduce the time that you and everyone else you work with spends standing at the printer wondering why it won’t work – and it’ll also be a whole lot easier to find documents you need. It’s a lot quicker to search through documents on your computer than a huge filing cabinet full of paper, after all.

Prioritize Your Work

Most of all, it’s important to assign each piece of work that you have to do a different priority level – do you need to do it immediately? Make sure that you focus on the critically important and immediate tasks first before moving onto the other ones.

5 Mistakes Your Company Must Avoid

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Productivity is essential in any workplace. Unfortunately, there could be some common mistakes holding your company back. You must therefore take steps to identify the issues so your business can move forward, and here are some informative tips to help you do just that.

Failing to Prepare for the Worst

The saying prevention is better than cure remains accurate. Any successful business wanting to survive in a fast-paced industry will quickly realise that they must not only have a plan, but a backup plan, too.

If you fail to prepare for the worst, your business may fail to reach its potential. The thought of a problem arising within the company probably makes your stomach churn, but they can happen, so you must be prepared for the worst, whether it is a marketing mishap or a clogged drain in the staff toilets. So, create a company policy, find the best plumbers and flood cleanup crews in your area, and ensure you always have a plan B. It will make working life so much easier.

Retaining the Wrong Employee

There will come a time when you hire the wrong person for your company. They may not have the right attitude, are unable to fill the brief or are simply insubordinate. You will, however, be required to decide on their future with the business.

While it is important to sometimes provide your staff with a little leeway, this should never come at the cost of your company’s operations. Continuing to employ a poor performing member of staff will not only slow your company down, but it could set a precedence for other members of staff, who believe it’s okay for them to turn up late, procrastinate or come into work with a negative attitude.

Not Preserving Talent

While it is important to cut poor performing team members, you should also strive to preserve your talent. If you have a standout team player who produces great work on time to a high standard, you must reward their hard work and efforts through career progression, pay rises or a more flexible working life. If someone is helping your company to grow, give them an opportunity to grow with you – or they will go elsewhere.

Creating a Dull Environment

Boring beige walls, too many rules and little interaction will only create a dull and stifled working environment. To provide a productive, creative and enjoyable place to work, you should aim to offer a more welcoming workplace, which could include changing the office layout, painting the walls in bold colours and featuring a hangout space for people to take a break from their desk to relax and destress.

Going Off Brand

The worst thing your company can do is lose its tone of voice, because this can make or break your business. You must strive to maintain the same personality and image your customers or clients have come to expect from you; otherwise, you will appear unprofessional and customers will turn to your competitors.

Nail Your First Recruitment Drive With These Tips!

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Your staff are going to be one of the most important assets your company has at its disposal, so obviously you want to make sure you’re hiring the best talent available. These are the people who will make every little task at your business happen, and have a considerable influence on your company culture. Here’s some of our best advice for hitting that first recruitment drive on the head…

Make them Want the Job

The first thing you need to do is give prime prospective employees a good reason to apply for the job you’re advertising. Seen as you’ve only just started your business, you’re probably going to be strained in terms of the finances you can throw around. However, the real assets will have a pretty clear idea of what they’re worth, and probably won’t want to work for the kind of salary you’re able to offer them. With this in mind, you need to put a unique spin on the openings you’re advertising, and make your company somehow more attractive than the industry giants you’re up against. Recruitment consultancies that specialise in a particular industry, such as Portfolio Credit Control, may be able to offer some great insights here. Whatever resources you use, you’re going to need to have something up your sleeve to attract the top talent.

Don’t Settle

Of course, no matter how attractive you’re able to make your brand, you’re probably not going to get the kind of experts you’d ideally want right of the bat. However, that doesn’t mean that you should settle for substandard talent! If you wind up hiring a whole workforce full of mediocre or even incompetent workers, then it will cripple your business’s efficiency and start to drain your valuable resources. This, in turn, can lead to a strenuous and expensive round of layoffs. From sorting through those initial applications all the way to the final interview, you need to have some firm, non-negotiable criteria that you’re going to use for each individual position. It’s only when you’re truly desperate for employees that you should sacrifice the kind of standards you’re setting for your recruitment drive. It’s better to have a company staffed by poor-quality workers than no company at all!

Look in the Right Places

Directing your job postings at people is a tentative balancing act. You need to make sure that it’s far-reaching enough for you to get a decent selection, but small enough for you to separate the wheat from the chaff quickly. If you put an ad on Gumtree or a site that’s equally universal, then you’ll get a massive influx of applications. This may sound pretty good on the surface, but it will mean that there’s a lot more work involved in sorting through those candidates and finding the real diamonds in the rough. Use more targeted platforms in order to dangle your postings on a smaller pool of candidates. LinkedIn has proven to be great for this, but there are a range of other job boards focused on specific industries and niches.