Hitting the Books – The Holistic Benefits of Updating Your Bookkeeping

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The term “holistic” has become a buzzword lately, especially in the field of health and wellness. Relating to an approach of the whole, whether it be the whole body (mind/body/spirit) or in this case, the whole business, there are lessons to be learned from stepping back and looking at the entire picture.

Using specialised accounting software is the best way to understand the larger financial picture within your business as well as keep track of inventory, organise records, and streamline payroll services.

Keep reading below to learn more about the benefits of updating your bookkeeping.

Cloud Services

Gone are the days of sitting at a desk for all your work. With cloud-based accounting systems, you can utilise the system anytime, anywhere, on any mobile device. Customers need and expect ‘round the clock service and advice. Now you have all of the information available at your fingertips with a mobile phone application.

The cloud is also a very secure way to store business information. Users can be employees at the office or working remotely, but all with the same access to the main software to add invoices, make changes to payroll, or keep track of inventory. With a cloud-based system, you get the convenience of saving money and work hours with an easy to use platform.

Broad View of Your Business

Accounting software was made to help business owners and employees manage a multitude of tasks without spending hours and hours on data entry and reports. The system is designed to be user-friendly and easy to understand for even the least computer-literate person. Access a plethora of financial reports to know exactly which areas need more attention and which areas are already doing well.

Upgrading a bookkeeping system is a painless and short process. Merely upgrade your current system, or ask your accountant for recommendations when switching to a different company. The system should have automatic upgrades, allow for multi-user sign-ins, and real-time updates. Reports can be generated for all categories, including incoming and outgoing expenditures, business expenses, payroll taxes, and more. These reports are vital to the broader financial picture of your business.

With financial reports, you can also make projections for future developments and profit margin estimates. A business without financial reports is like a ship lost at sea. There is no direction, no understanding of the path to take. Reports and balance sheets that are kept up to date will give a clear and accurate picture of the health (or sickness) in your business. Make sure you have current software to maintain the projections and correct tools to succeed.

Keep Track of Changes

Change constantly occurs with tax laws, new regulations, and compliance requirements. With an up-to-date accounting software system, all of those changes can be adjusted without hassle or worry. Instead of worrying about if your business is compliant with taxes and payroll, you can focus on guiding the business in the right direction.

It is a delicate balance when running any business. Being able to focus on what is important and allowing for the systems in place to do their work is the mark of a successful businessperson. Delegating tasks can be difficult, but is necessary in order for a business to thrive. There are many great software options to choose from that can keep your business running smoothly.

Take a Holistic Approach to Your Business

In business, a holistic approach means to look at the entire business with all of its parts together. Each part must work to benefit the whole. An accounting software system is a large part of this process and may require more training and energy to get the system successfully in place but the efforts will be worth it in the end.

Using Press Releases to Gain Visibility

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It can be hard to get noticed in such a crowded marketplace, but there are a number of things entrepreneurs can do to gain more visibility.

Of course, social media is a hugely effective medium to broadcast your message – but unless it’s of direct relevance and personal value to your extended network, it’s unlikely to show up in their Facebook feed unless it’s a sponsored link… which, nowadays, can be pretty expensive.  The main benefit is that you can use hyper-personalised targeting to hone in on the individual demographic you are wanting to reach, including their tastes interests – but, as already mentioned, this will come at a significant cost.

However, have you considered the fact many companies submit press releases for a completely different reason.  They submit them on the basis of boosting their search engine rank and credibility with ranking sites such as Moz.  Indeed, they often imagine not many people will read the content of the press release – which might sound a little disheartening, but this practice of using press releases to boost your rank with Google is a well known practice that can be quite effective.

A strategy that is good for building your company website’s reputation within search engine marketing (see: domain authority) is to submit press releases that are then published on a high ranking site with a link back to your website. When Google sends out its robots they will rank your website higher as an already authoritative website is recommending your site; which infers trust and credibility onto your website.

You can submit a press release on the internet, for a small fee, or on certain websites for no fee whatsoever… a good example of a press release announcement can be found here; it is about Ogletree Deakins and hosted on PR Newswire; now whilst the content may not seem particularly riveting, something to bear in mind on these sites is that journalists working for huge newspapers such as The Sunday Times, The New York Times and even the BBC use these sites for ease and time-saving when it comes to writing an article on a tight deadline.  

This means there would be a chance of a high flying journalist from a national newspaper linking your site with a particularly feature they are writing as a result of this press release.

In summary, if you’re wanting to get high up in the search rankings within Google, and let’s face it we all know how important appearing on the front page is – because, in reality, how many people scan through the next two or three pages let alone the 679th page which many businesses that rank poorly for that particular search phrase will be on; even though they might have relevant content and offer a great product or service.  The point is, if you want to get up in Google you need to ‘play the game’ and to do that, you need to know what rules can be bent and which can be broken. It would appear that using press releases in this way to boost your Google rank is a way to ethically bend the rules and quickly get up onto the first page of Google.

Raising Capital for Your Serious Start Up

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There’s a point in turning your idea into reality where things get serious; gone are the days of dreaming and scheming – it’s now time to launch,and to do this, you need some capital behind you.

Unfortunately, one of the greatest challenges any entrepreneur wanting to start up their own small business faces, is raising capital to take the acorn of their idea into the fledgling stage of business development.  Essentially, the process of raising capital is what enables them to take their business to the next level.

That said, unless you’re an established company such as American Pavilion that rents out clearspan fabric structures you’re unlikely to get on Shark Tank anytime soon; meaning you need to find a more low key way to attain the capital you require.

However, something to be mindful of is that entrepreneurs face immense emotional pressure and work very hard, yet still face an extremely high risk of failing within the first few years.  In this case, having friends and family to support you is particularly crucial but when they have money tied up in your business – the dynamic can change to the point they become a source of pressure and stress rather than comfort and support.

This article looks at three of the most common suggestions for raising capital as a start-up business, at an early stage – which are to get a business loan, seek help from friends and family, and crowdfunding.

GET A BUSINESS LOAN

The most traditional route for setting up a small business is to get a small business loan.  This is one of the most easy, reliable, and simple ways of financing your business. You keep complete control of your company, as you aren’t having to offer equity to external investors, who each get a say in how your company is run – and convincing one person, is a whole lot easier than going around investor meetings.

FRIENDS AND FAMILY

If you have a wealthy relative, or several friends and family who are open to backing your business for a small incentive (such as interest on the loan) then this can be a great option, as it will cost less and be easier to arrange than commercial financing; however, borrowing money from friends and family can be a very stressful experience that totally changes (and sometimes annihilates) friendships.  It might be worth considering the potential strain put on your friendships should the business not turn out to be a success.

CROWDFUNDING

A recent trend in raising startup capital is that of crowdfunding; where you pitch your idea on an online platform such as www.crowdfunding.com and strangers can offer bits of cash to back your idea – but these ‘bits of cash’ can accumulate to several million dollars.

In summary, there are three main options; raise money from a commercial source such as a bank, raise money from friends and family, or raise money via crowdfunding.  Whatever route you decide to go down just make sure that your cash flow projections are realistic and that you are asking for as much as you actually need; as one of the main reasons for business failure is a lack of cash flow.

Marketing Advice for Strong Startup Success

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Most startups fail within the first year of business, and even fewer of them make it past the 5-year mark. There are a number of reasons why this is the case, but quite often it is because they have failed to market themselves effectively.

If you want to be successful as a startup entrepreneur then you need to nail your marketing campaigns right from the off. If you can’t do that, you will struggle to gain enough momentum to keep you afloat until things really take off, and they never will without the right marketing strategy.

So, marketing is important, but how do you get it right as a startup?

Collect and Use Data

Probably the best way to ensure that your marketing efforts are on point is by collecting data from your target audience, analyzing it and then marketing in ways that you know your audience will be receptive to. If you don’t have time to collect, analyze and act on data yourself, have a marketing agency like MyOptimind take care of it for you. It has never been easier to collect data and gain a deep level of insight into your audience, so you would be foolish not to do so.

Show Your Difference

Unless you’ve invented a really unique product, chances are that you will be competing with a whole lot of other companies, many of whom will be way more established than you are. The only real hope you have of competing with them is showing your audience that you are different. If you can show them how and why you do things differently – and the why must represent a benefit to them – they are way more likely to be interested and give you a chance.

Build Authority

A really good way of convincing people to buy stuff from your startup is by first building your authority in your niche. You can do this by writing blog posts, making how-to videos and engaging on niche forums. Once you put yourself out there and people see that you know your stuff, they will automatically be more interested in doing business with you than someone they don’t know who may or may not have as much knowledge as you.

Sponsor a Community Event

If your startup is locally based, a very effective way of marketing yourself is by sponsoring a local event, such as raising funds for a local charity or community project like the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence. This will automatically show you in a positive light, and people will respond positively to you and your company as a result.

Engage Your Customers

Instead of simply selling to them, seek to engage with your customers instead. Start conversations with them on social media, ask them what they think about your products and what special offers they would like to see and they will treat you more like a friend or acquaintance than a salesman, and they will be more likely to act and buy something for you as a result.

If you try some of the above techniques and you keep working at it, you will start winning people round to your startup, and you will still be in business this time next year.

Tools That Will Help Run Your Business Efficiently

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In any business there’s always room for improvement, no matter how big or successful it may be. Business only works through strategic planning and executing of those techniques, and there are new and improved ways of running a business coming out each day. Whether you feel like your business needs improving or not, it’s always a good idea to keep up with the latest ways that people are trying to help with their businesses better than ever. Here are some tools that will help run your business efficiently so that you can build a bigger and better empire.

Document management software

It’s likely that at some point during the business day you’ve got to deal with paperwork or some sort of document. Files like these can easily become lost, muddled, or even duplicated which can make running your business harder than it needs to be. You can now buy document management software to help you manage these files and keep them organised in one handy place. Software like this often offers template management too, which can save you tons of time and really help the efficiency of you and your staff.

Employing the right people, and keeping them trained

An important factor in any business is the people who help keep it running, and that’s why it’s important that you have the right people working for you. Hiring people can be a tough task, especially because interviews don’t really show a person’s full working capacity. Instead, you could use employee referral software which allows you to see what your members of staff are achieving. Not only that, you can send them useful bits of information which can increase their productivity and knowledge of their job.

Keep everyone in the loop

The key to a successful business includes efficient communication. It’s important to make sure that not only are you having regular meetings and updates with senior members of staff, but with all members of staff. There will always be need to know information, but even the littlest of details can completely change how someone approaches the way that they do things. Many successful businesses choose to have a weekly meeting with all members of staff where business and personal matters can be discussed and resolved. Communication is key!

Clever financial options for your customers

A really popular business strategy is being able to offer finance to your customers. This won’t apply to all businesses, but if you’re selling products that would take the average person a while to save for, it might be a good idea to offer a finance deal for them to take if they’d like to. It’s convenient for customers who can’t afford things straight up, and it’s great for you because you are then bound into a contract, meaning that you will have regular contact with them for the entirety of the finance deal. This will give you the chance to keep them sweet, and they will be more likely to return.

Try these tools in your business and see if they can help you accelerate the growth and reputation of your business!

How To Boost Your Plateaued Business

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There comes a time in most businesses where success has been increasing, and sometimes at quite a speed, only to gradually slow and level out onto somewhat of a plateau. While, in most cases, this is nothing to worry about, it can be frustrating. You want to keep yourself, and your employees, motivated and an increase in sales would do just that.

Before you consider letting employees go or seek further investment to boost your companys finances, have you thought about the following three strategies to reignite your success?

Expand Your Reach To New Customers

Its possible that your growth has come to a halt because youve already won all the customers you will find in your local area. Instead of trying to sell more to your already-engaged consumers, why not look further afield, into new markets, for wider success?

Thanks to the internet, its easy to scope out the potential of new markets, both within your country and across the world. Do a competitor analysis to ascertain how great a need there is for your product in these new locations before attempting to launch. If there are no other businesses operating in the same industry as you, then thats a green light. Its recommended you start slow and look for a small number of new clients or launch a manageable new branch (for example, one store), so as not to put your existing business at risk.

Rebrand To Change Customer Perceptions

A rebrand or redesign can be a very powerful tool indeed for encouraging greater sales. If youve been in business for a while, youll have developed some key equities that youll want to keep as part of your visual brand language moving forwards. To neglect these important qualities may risk damage to your brand communication.

Never fear if you dont believe youre very design articulate, partner with a strong design and marketing agency, such as the experts at Eventige.com, who will be able to guide you through a rebranding project. Think about the semiotic meanings of the colors and shapes you use. Are they communicating a motivating message to your end consumer?

Launch A New Product or Brand Extension

If youve already tapped the potential of one line of products, there may be scope for you extend your line to include new solutions. You may choose to ask your customers directly if there are any other needs they have, you could run a series of interviews or focus groups or perhaps collaborate with another business to bring your two areas of expertise together.

Collaboration is a fantastic way to grow your business, as youll learn new skills and techniques and benefit from co-branding a product, reaching out to a new audience.

Boost Your Stagnated Business

You dont need to go to extreme measures to boost your business again. Consider the above opportunities. Strategize new markets and products to develop, or reflect upon whether you could tweak your current brand communication and hopefully, youll soon see the buzz return to your workplace, motivating your employees and seeing your bank balance go back in the right direction: up.

 

Making Sure Potential Customers Make Their Way to Your Site

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For a few years now, new business owners have decided to start up their ventures online rather than going down the old brick and mortar business route. While this may go against tradition, it has proven extremely profitable for many, and for good reason! When you’re starting out, you don’t have a reputation, recommendations, or established brand image to support you in the market. It’s difficult to get your products to stand out amongst all of the competitors out there. But by operating online, you significantly reduce running costs and can offer your goods and services at lower prices – something that is always bound to catch any buyer’s eye. However, when it comes to making a success of your online business, everything won’t necessarily be plain sailing. After all, the web is a large and heavily saturated place, and it can be difficult to direct potential buyers to your page, regardless of whether you’re offering low prices or not. So, how do you go about ensuring you get as much traffic as possible? Here are a few ideas to get you started on the right foot!

PPC

The first thing that you want to do is to advertise. Advertising is what will expose your products to potential buyers and encourage them to look further into who you are, what you have to offer, and (hopefully) how to make a purchase from you. If you’re operating online, the best place to advertise is also online. This is because your adverts could include direct links to your website where the customers will be able to push their purchase through and make you profit. However, as we are all aware, advertising can be expensive. The best option for people who are watching their budget is often PPC advertising. Now, there’s PPC directly targeted to near enough every sector out there… PPC for Car Dealers, PPC for clothing companies, PPC for events companies. But each runs off a relatively similar concept. PPC stands for “pay per click”, which means that you only have to pay the advertiser for each unique web user who is directed to your page. This means that you are only paying for genuine traffic!

SEO

“SEO” is yet another acronym that you should familiarise yourself with. It stands for “search engine optimization”. While it may sound complex, it is simply the process of helping your webpage to appear as high in search engine results pages as possible. It sounds relatively insignificant, but if you think about, people use search engines to find pretty much anything they want or need on the web. If your page features higher in the results, they’re more likely to click it. How often do you go past the first page or two of search results yourself? Probably very rarely! So, collaborate with an SEO specialist in order to secure a high ranking and gather the maximum traffic possible.

These are just a couple of techniques that you should try out to ensure that you get as many visitors as possible on your site. Remember that the more visitors your page receives, the more people who are being exposed to what you are selling and the more profit you are likely to make!

9 Bite-Sized Tips For Reviving Your Restaurant Business

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It’s not easy running a restaurant business. Profits can be slim, operating costs high, and you always need to be pushing your restaurant forward. If you stand still for more than a moment, then there’s going to be another restaurant ready and willing to the customers that aren’t quite impressed by what you’re doing anymore. But fear not, because reviving a restaurant that’s become stuck in a rut isn’t as difficult as you might think. Below, we take a look at ten actionable tips that’ll make your restaurant appealing to locals and visitors alike.

Update Your Menu

New restaurants have an instant advantage over ones that have been in business for a few years: everyone knows that they have a brand new menu (because how could they have anything else?). That means every item on their menu has been well-thought out; there’s nothing on there that can yet be “phoned in” by a chef working on autopilot. But you can catch up to the start-up restaurants by reviewing and updating your menu. This will also be good for you, and for your cooks: menus can get pretty boring! Take a walk through your offerings and see what items are tired and should be retired, and which should stay. This also gives you a chance to add some fashionable menu additions, such as vegan and gluten-free options.  

Create One or Two standout Dishes

You can’t make every dish on your menu an above-average offering. You have to think about time, after all! Still, that doesn’t mean that every item on your menu has to be a standard offering. Think about creating one or two standout dishes, for which your restaurant will be famous. When it comes to putting together your new menu, put some extra time into creating something special – this is a fun part of running your own restaurant business. The emphasis should be on a creative dish, made from the best ingredients. If everything works as it should, it’ll be the most popular dish on your menu.

Get a New Look

It doesn’t take long for a restaurant to look a bit dated. The walls can look a bit faded, the toilets aren’t working quite as well as they should, and the cosy atmosphere you created when you opened is now a thing of the past. Updating your look can breathe new life into your establishment, and is actually a good way to get people visiting again; they’ll be thinking “we haven’t been there in a while, let’s go check it out!” Also, keep in mind that the toilets are often indicative of the quality of the place. It’s a bit odd but true!

Redesign the Inside

While your refurbishing your outside and walls, remember that it’s where people are sitting that really counts. If you have booths that have scuff marks, or tables that won’t stay straight without wedging some paper under one of the legs, then it’s time up update your furniture. There’s a wide range of restaurant furniture by Apex available, so take a look and see which type of tables and chairs would best suit your restaurant’s new look. The entire look and feel of your restaurant – not to mention your customer’s comfort – can depend on the quality of your furnishings, so make sure you’re putting a lot of thought into what you buy.

Be a Presence

You’ll have a lot of tasks to take care of as a restaurant owner. However, no matter how busy you are, it’s important that you’re a presence in your restaurant, especially if you’re operating a local joint. People are much more inclined to revisit a space if they know they’re going to receive a friendly greeting from the owner. In any case, running a restaurant is difficult enough, and this is one of the fun parts!

Host Special events

You’ve got a big space, the facilities to cater, and a local population keen to attend events, so why not host one? There’s a lot of scope for hosting special events, such as concert evenings and guest chefs, and there’ll also ensure that plenty of people come through the door.  

Breakfast and Lunch

Not everybody can afford to eat dinner in a restaurant. And when they do go to a restaurant, they typically stick to what they know. You can cater to this market by offering a lunch menu, and a weekend breakfast menu. This is obviously cheaper, but will boost your revenue – and more importantly, will bring a whole new type of customer through the doors.

Improve Staff Training

Your staff play a massive role in the success of your restaurant. It doesn’t matter if the food you serve is outstanding; if the service is terrible, then you’re unlikely to get too many repeat customers. While some restaurant owners think that having the best food is the most important attribute, keep in mind that most restaurant goers aren’t culinary experts; they just want to have a nice meal with their loved ones. If you’ve hired correctly, then your staff will already be pretty good at navigating customer expectations and offer a high level of service. Still, there’s not a waiter or waitress in the world that wouldn’t benefit from receiving some extra training from time to time.

Getting Food Out

If you’ve created a pleasant ambience, offer good drinks, and make your restaurant conducive to conversation, then your customers are likely to give you a little bit of leeway when it comes to waiting for their food. Yet still, there’ll come the point when impatience begins to set in. As such, make sure that, while your emphasis should be on delivering delicious meals, that the waiting time isn’t excessive. The average time from order to food being served is around 25 minutes, so try to keep it within this limit. If the wait time is routinely exceeding forty minutes, then there’s something wrong with your order process.

It’s not easy running a restaurant, but there are ways to help yourself. Take the tips above, and you should notice an improvement.

The Untold Business Benefits Of A Safe Working Environment

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Many entrepreneurs are aware of the laws surrounding safe working environment. Namely; you need to provide on or face potential legal issues. As a result, most businesses strive to make their work environment as safe as possible, purely to fit with the law.

Nevertheless, it may surprise you to know there are actually lots of benefits to creating a safe working environment. It’s not just a legal requirement, it will help your company in many different ways:

Greatly Improves Productivity

Honestly, it’s bizarre how much your business can improve its productivity with a safe working environment. There are no hazards for people to worry about, meaning they can focus on the tasks in front of them. They won’t be distracted, and there will be fewer disruptions too. People won’t have to take time out of their work to try and fix a safety issue, they can just knuckle down and do everything. The entire atmosphere in your business changes and everyone starts working to the peak of their efficiency.

Reduces Employee Turnover Rate

Employees will not enjoy working for a company that doesn’t provide a safe working environment. As such, what would you do if you worked for a business that didn’t take safety seriously? You’d leave and move somewhere else. As a business owner, this is terrible as it means employee turnover rates are high. The consequence of this is more money being spent trying to bring in new staff, and it’s just a massive burden. But, with a safe working environment, you improve employee retention and reduce turnover rates!

Prevents Money Loss From Accidents

It’s common sense that a safe working environment causes fewer accidents in the workplace. It’s also common sense that this is clearly a beneficial thing! Fewer accidents mean your business will lose less money. If you don’t have the right business insurance, then you could spend a lot of money paying compensation after an accident occurs. This could be to customers, employees – you name it. By making your workplace as safe as can be, accidents won’t happen, and there’s no need to spend money paying anyone compensation!

Maintains A Positive Business Image

Imagine your company doesn’t have a safe working environment. What happens to your image? Eventually, word gets around about how dangerous your premises is, and people start to look at your company in a negative light. They hear your employees talk about how bad it is to work for you because there are so many hazards. Furthermore, if accidents happen because your work environment isn’t safe enough, then they could make the news, which further damages your image. When you have a safe working environment, then nothing gets in the way of your positive image, and you maintain it!

It’s clear that a safe working environment benefits your business in so many different ways. Speaking of which, your small business should focus on making your premises as safe as can be. Don’t just meet the bare minimum legal requirements, go above and beyond to provide a great working environment that people feel safe in.

Boosting Business Productivity: Expert Advice For Entrepreneurs

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So, you decided to launch a new business, and now you’re ready to make some serious profits. Well, the best way of achieving that goal is to ensure that your company and employees become as productive as possible. Those without experience might struggle when it comes to that task, and that is why there is some excellent advice and guidance on this page. Take a read through some of the ideas below, and then work out how you can apply them to your operation. We’ll try to keep things as simple as possible to avoid confusion and ensure every reader can benefit from this post.

Automate as much as possible

There are lots of ways in which modern entrepreneurs can automate areas of their operation. Maybe you need to invest in some robotics or something similar to make light work of dealing with your warehouse? Perhaps specialist software that automatically records all your income and outgoings will help you to save time when you need to complete your tax return? Just use some common sense and look for areas in your business where it’s possible to remove human workers and replace them with machines or computers. That will help to ensure you complete orders in the fastest time.

Invest in the latest technology

You’ll find new technology hitting the markets every single week that could assist you in reaching your business goals. That is especially the case when it comes to dealing with your workload and managing your staff. Developers around the world create workload management software that is guaranteed to help you save lots of time and money. Those programs will consider many different factors before advising your team on the best processes to follow in the most suitable order. Again, a software of that nature is sure to help your business become more productive this year.

Offer financial rewards to employees

Sometimes you have to use some psychology to encourage your workers to go the extra mile for your brand. Dangling a financial carrot in front of your employees is often the best way to get them to go above and beyond the call of duty. Let your workers know that you will reward a bonus to the employee who offers the best performance each month. That should help to create an element of competition within your team, and you should notice the benefits and improvements almost immediately. If you don’t want to hand out cash, you can always get some vouchers or family theme park tickets.

Now you know how to boost productivity within your operation, it’s time to start working on your plan for the next twelve months. Make sure you don’t forget any of the advice from this article because it could make a significant difference to the level of profit you create. When all’s said and done, you became involved in the business world because you wanted to make a fortune, right? Then you need to implement some of these ideas before it’s too late. Good luck!

Size, Location, Facilities and Other Office Moving Tips

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There is no doubt that the decision to move to a bigger office space is a difficult one to make. Sure, your business has enjoyed success where it is now, but how will the uprooting everything to go elsewhere affect this? The whole process required in-depth project planning, solid communication skills with everyone involved and a full understanding of your individual business requirements. However, if you get everything right, you will put yourself in the strongest position to upgrade your company to the next level. In this blog post, we are going to be talking you through a few top tips to help you with your office upgrade.

Look at Your Current Infrastructure First

Before you do anything, you need to closely analyse your current office infrastructure. Have you outgrown it or is there still room to expand in-house? There is no point changing location unless you are sure that it will bring positive benefits to your business. It is an expensive and time-consuming process, so you really need to have confidence that you have gotten the most out of your current space.

If you feel like you have, now is the time to analyse your current workplace in detail to see what you rely on to run your business effectively including technologies, processes and stakeholders. You need to ensure that everything is fully transferable to prevent as many delays and drops in productivity levels as possible. Your IT systems may have been designed for your current size and specifications and you need to install entirely new ones in the future.

Choose a Location

Next up, you need to closely consider the location where you will be moving to. Of course, a lot of business is done online these days, so you may consider this to be not as important as it used to be, but there are still plenty of advantages to setting up in a good place. Issues like customer footfall, proximity to suppliers, transport facilities and accessibility for employees are all things which should be firmly on your radar.

Perhaps you are even thinking of having your own business premises built from scratch. This is likely to be a hugely time-consuming and costly process, but the major advantage is that you get everything exactly as you would like it. You may need to employ a professional project planner to ensure that everything runs smoothly, and you may also require some partner organisations and Veris use a variety of methods to perform Underground Service Detection Surveys before you even begin. There is a lot to think about so make sure that you have weighed this decision up in your mind thoroughly before getting started.

Perks of Moving

The whole point of moving office is that you are supposed to be going somewhere which is better than what you have already. As well as preserving the culture which you have built up in the life of your business so far, you will ideally be adding some features that both you are your employees can enjoy. Think bike storage, catering facilities, and access to exercise equipment etc. Perhaps the benefits simply come from where your office is located and the other businesses that are in the local area like cafes, restaurants, grocery stores etc.

Consider the Difference in Size

Just because the new office that you are currently looking at is bigger, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will be more accommodating to your business needs. You need to do all your measurements carefully, checking the dimensions of your furniture and other larger items to ensure that it all fits comfortably in the new office. You want to avoid dead space wherever possible. After all, you are paying for every inch and you need to make sure that it is all being used in the best way. The effect that you should be aiming to achieve is a nice balance between emptiness and clutter. When you are showing clients around the place, it doesn’t look great is your office is packed with disused space. Remember, decoration can also be an effective use of space as well.  

Consult with Your Team and Take Their Requests

Obviously, your opinions and ideas as the business owner are hugely important when you are creating your new office. However, it should also be a collaborative process as managers, employees, and even contractors all weigh in on how they would like the extra space used. Perhaps one department is pushing hard for extra desk space because they would like to expand. So, you should try to establish a smooth request management process which involves everyone being able to put their case forwards.

Make Your Moving Timetable

Your office move obviously needs to be carefully coordinated, and one of the best ways of achieving this is by creating a timetable that takes into account every little detail. You want the actual move to be completed over a short period of time – maybe even a weekend to minimise business disruption. However, there is a lot of preparation to make before you can get to this stage. Enlist all the professional support you can get as early as you can including moving companies, IT support technicians etc. When you make the timetable, ensure that everything is followed rigidly as you don’t want the process to be dragged out unnecessarily.  

There is no doubt that upgrading to a bigger office can be a great decision for all kinds of business. Not only are you giving yourself room in which to grow, you are also giving yourself the option to improve your facilities and experience new location benefits. However, this is not something that you should be entering into lightly. To make sure that you enjoy a positive overall experience, you should put in place a strong project plan that takes into account all eventualities and leaves you with a transition that is both smooth and orderly.

Understanding Logistics Is Essential For Every Company

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We’ll start with an easy question. What do we mean by logistics? There are actually a variety of different meanings behind this term. In this case, we’re talking about the activity by commercial organisations of transporting goods to customers. It is crucial that businesses think carefully about this area of the business model for a variety of reasons. Costs, for instance, can be high here which is why there are many businesses that choose to outsource this area of the company and get another business to handle deliveries. Though, there are certainly issues that can arise with this plan. You need to think about speed and efficiency as well. If your logistics services aren’t efficient turnaround for your company is going to be slow. This could lead to customers favouring the competition instead and avoiding your business completely.

So, let’s explore some of these areas and make sure you know how to keep logistics on track in your company.

What About The Warehouse?

The warehouse is where you keep all the stock before it is shipped off to customers and a great warehouse goes a long way to making sure that logistics in your business are top notch. Obviously, if your warehouse is run in an effective way, it will be a lot easier to get things out and on the way to your customers without delay.

Tech could play a big part here, and unsurprisingly, this is not the only area of logistics where a little more tech could benefit your company a lot. Here, we’re talking about cloud servers. With cloud servers, you can complete inventory stock management remotely. That means regardless of where you are, you will know exactly how much stock is left in your company. This is fantastic because it’s not just you that will be able to check this. If it’s on the cloud server, every part of your business will be connected and be able to see how much stock is left. So, for instance, you might have more stock of a certain colored item. If that’s the case, marketing would know to push this color more than the rest. It’s a basic example, but it shows just how important connectivity can be.

Of course, if you want a great warehouse, you need to make sure that it’s easy to manage, move and prepare items. For this, you need the right equipment, and with forklifts for sale online, it’s easy to get this for your company. Though it is certainly an expensive commitment and that’s where you have to think about whether it’s worth handling the logistics of your business yourself. As already mentioned, a lot of companies do outsource, and it is worth exploring this option.

Is Outsourcing Logistics A Smart Move?

By outsourcing logistics, you will be employing a company to handle everything for stock management to deliveries and everything in between. The advantage of this move is that you no longer need to worry about these areas of the company yourself. It takes a significant weight off your shoulders as a business owner. You can also limit the costs if you get the right service, but that’s a big ‘if.’ There’s a strong possibility that you’ll find the service adds a large amount to the overall cost which is of course exactly what you were trying to avoid.

It’s why you need to compare the costs of these types of services because we’re not talking about pocket change here. You could be dealing with massive amounts of money that will ultimately be added to your business budget overall.

There’s also an issue with quality. One of the aspects that you should always consider when outsourcing any area of your company is whether the new business can maintain the same level of quality. If the answer is no, then it’s a serious issue, and this is especially true for outsourcing. If you look at reviews online, a common issue that customers have is with the speed and quality of deliveries. They hate when deliveries arrive late, when packages arrive damaged and when the customer service for the company providing the deliveries is terrible. There are ways around this. You can check whether the company has a positive performance history online and also explore some of their other clients. Check whether the businesses that they provide a service for have a fantastic record for deliveries. If they do, then there should be no issues using that particular company for your own logistics.

Still, it’s important to realize that ultimately whenever you outsource, you are giving away a fraction of the control of your business away. This isn’t always a bad move, but it does mean that you get to make none of the decisions and all of the responsibility or indeed accountability for the outcomes.

Giving Customers What They Want

When you do set up the logistics area of your company, you need to think about what customers want. Ultimately customers want to be in the loop, and they want to know exactly when a product is going to be delivered or when it will arrive. They are eager to ensure that the service is customization so they can choose when a product will be delivered too. This is something you should take into account regardless of whether you are managing your own logistics or not.

Again, tech can help here. With tracking tech, you can make sure that customers are always able to see exactly when a product is going to be delivered and how long it will take. They will even be the first to know if a product is going to be delayed and you can see how this would be beneficial for them.

You may also want to think about setting up an app for your business so that customers can keep a check on their deliveries and orders. Make things easy as possible for customers and they will buy more products. It’s as simple as that.

We hope you find this helpful when dealing with logistics in your company.

The True Cost Of Providing Employee Benefits

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As anyone in the world of business will tell you, one of the most expensive overheads a company can have is the people working for it. In the beginning, these people won’t simply walk into their jobs, and money will need to be spent to find them. This can be very expensive, and a lot of businesses struggle at this early stage. From here, you will have to start paying salaries, taxes, and loads of other little things to make sure that they are safe, secure, and happy in their role. All in all, this will put a lot of pressure on your business, and this is before you even begin to consider the benefits you give them.

In most cases, when you decide to do something nice for your employees, it will often come with loads of little negatives which make it hard to justify. Of course, though, you don’t always get a choice, and providing these things to your employees will be essential if you want to get good work from them. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring the true costs of doing something good for those working for you, while also helping you to make it a little bit cheaper.

Leave/Vacation Time

 

Nowadays, almost every job you will find will come with some sort of vacation allowance which enables employees to take some time out of work each year to spend on themselves. This is designed to help your employees to stay on their toes, while also ensuring that they are happy. It can be very hard to work for an entire year without a proper break. So, to make sure no one is overworked, you will have to work hard to provide this to them.

The main area which makes this expensive is covering the time when important people are away. There will be employees in your company which perform essential roles every day, and will be missed when they are not around. To make sure things go smoothly during their absence, you will need to cover this time, paying other people to take over for the duration of the vacation. Using freelance staff is a great way to do this, and there are loads of agencies out there with the experience to help you.

Along with the money being spent on their replacement, you will also have to think about the money you pay them while they are on holiday. It is standard for people to get at least a portion of their normal working finances during this time. To make sure that you can cover this, it will be worth factoring it in when you’re deciding what you can pay everyone on the team, taking out the extra you will have to pay them while they are on their breaks.

A Company Car

 

Jobs which come with cars are often some of the most popular you will find on recruitment sites. This sort of benefit isn’t to be sniffed at, and it can give someone a lot of freedom without having to pay the price. Of course, though, when the employee doesn’t have to pay for something, it will mean that you’re covering the costs, and you will need to consider a couple of different areas when you’re doing this.

The first will be the car itself. In most cases, you will handle this on a lease agreement, instead of buying the car to give to your employee. This will already make things a little cheaper, while also giving you upgrades as they come out. Of course, though, it won’t be cheap, and the contract you will have to sign could last for a couple of years. This makes it very important that you only give this to people who are very serious about the prospect of working for you into the future.

Along with paying for the car itself, you will also have some other areas to think about. Insurance will be one of the biggest, as you will need something special for this sort of arrangement, sparking the need for some research. A lot of employers will also want to get the help of a lawyer like https://www.robinettelaw.com/west-virginia/morgantown-car-accident-injury-attorney/, just in case they ever need to cover an accident caused by their workers. While this isn’t essential, it can provide you with a great line of defense when you’re working on a company car.

Breaks And Their Environment

 

Over the last couple of decades, it has become increasingly popular for modern workplaces to take on elements of comfort which have never been seen before. Stocked drinks fridges, lounge areas, and entertainment can all improve your employee’s breaks by a huge margin, as covered by http://www.health.com/home/workday-breaks-help-employees-reboot-researchers-say. Along with this, longer and more frequent breaks are becoming standard throughout the world of work. Of course, while these things are good for employees, they can cost the business a huge amount.

While having good breaks will always improve their work, it also has the chance to distract your employees. If they have too much time for playing games during their work day, it will be impossible to switch to work mode, and you could lose a huge amount of money thanks to poor productivity. There is a fine line to walk when you’re trying to achieve the goals in the paragraph above. To help you out with this, there are loads of blogs around the web covering modern offices and workspaces, giving you the chance to see what has worked for others.

With all of this in mind, it should start to get a lot easier to assess the costs of providing benefits to your employees. As time goes on, more and more jobs are coming with perks which can’t be ignored by those looking for work. With the best people going to the companies offering the most, this sort of investment could have a huge positive impact on your business. Of course, though, you will need to do some research to make it work.

Go Japanese Or Go Home

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Japan is a popular destination for tourists. In fact, a small island in Japan has even been named the most popular travel destination in 2018. Needless to say, the island nation is becoming an attractive area, both regarding culture and landscape. The global public has fallen in love with the kawaii characters and the healthy sushi – even though most people continue to refer to all the Japanese cuisine in terms of sushi – and more and more tourists plan their holiday in the island where the sun rises first. But aside from being an exciting vacation destination, Japan is also a fantastic place to start building your business empire. With its mixture of reliability, innovativeness, cultural differences and growing markets, Japan has everything you need to grow your startup safely and durably. So what’s stopping you from going Japanese and making a success of it? Here are the key lessons you need to learn before approaching the Japanese market.

They love apps in Japan

Japan is by far one of the most modern countries in the world. As a result, it’s also the country where apps are the most popular, and especially gaming apps. In fact, despite its small size, Japan is the first country in terms of consumption of gaming app, enabling developers and app companies to profit significantly from monetizing their application to the Japanese market. Japanese users are more likely to use in-app purchases, creating an average revenue per download of $6.34, opposed to the cost per install of $1.86. So, if you’re considering the internationalization of your business, you need to give your app Japanese exposure to approach this profitable market. From a practical point of view, you should offer a Japanese version of all play apps, as it’s the best way to grow your revenues effectively. Lifestyle and networking apps are also big in Japan, as the market reacts positively to the western culture. For businesses, it’s a simple enough tech alternative to testing a new market without a high budget involvement.

You can trust Japanese engineering for your business

Japanese engineering is received positively all around the world. In fact, when it comes to everyday items, more and more users turn to Japanese manufacturers for replacement parts to fix their IT devices. Last year, Murata Manufacturing, a Japanese manufacturer, announced that their parts still support Apple’s technological leaps forwards with the iPhone X. Another common everyday item that benefits from the Japanese engineering quality is your car. Japanese cars have a reputation for being extremely reliable, more than American or even German cars. Automakers such as Honda, Nissan and Toyota, have long proven their worth, and even though you could apply for a Nissan extended warranty plan, you probably know that it’s likely you’ll never need it. The natural effort that Japanese manufacturers put in design and research pays off so that pieces last longer and don’t need to be often replaced. Working with a Japanese partner in any part of a manufacturing project is a profitable choice.  

An intensely innovative and playful country

Every year, CEATEC opens its door to the largest electronics show in Japan. And every year the nation that has invented the Walkman and the blue LED light continues to fascinate visitors with their innovative approach to electronics. Last year, CEATEC introduced a Bluetooth bitescan, designed to measure your chewing strokes. The purpose? Helping people to eat healthily by maximizing their chewing habits, and ultimately collecting data to improve the food and dental industries. Japan has also brought a new identifiable print to the market, the earprint, which is much more difficult to fake than a fingerprint. Finally, for those trying to lose weight, an infrared calorie counter can help you to know how much you’re really consuming in a meal. What would you give to share these innovations with your audience?

The joy of Japanese partnerships

Admittedly, if you already have a business outside of Japan, you may only be looking for a partner to expand your activities on the island of the rising sun. You might as well gain new insights into business management and performance management by developing a close connecting with a Japanese firm. Indeed, management in Japan doesn’t start in the office. Management is designed by people for people, and it has a clear purpose: To help you to make the most of your knowledge and expertise in your life. As Japanese has a deep understanding of the value of each individual, they, therefore, ensure that business management delivers individual value to each employee.

Who is the Japanese customer?

If you’re looking to understand the Japanese customer, it’s important to understand that while the market is different, most consumers are learning lessons from their European and American counterparts. Discounted prices and online retailers have now become a popular behavior in Japan too. In other words, you might want to remember the lessons learned on the Western market regarding best value for money items, as you will be using these to enter the Japanese market. The typical Japanese household spends more time at home than going out, and they choose lunch boxes over lunch offers. In short, if you want to export, you need to deliver exceptional value.

What does the market want?

However, you’d be pleased to know that exporting onto the Japanese market can be easy. Indeed, you are dealing with an audience who is attracted to Western products. Surprisingly, while American and European customers love the cuteness of kawaii items, their Japanese neighbors find our Snoopy, Smurf, Bart Simpson and Barbapapa just as cute and desirable. In fact, you could almost say that Western characters have a kawaii reputation in Japan, among children and adults. Lifestyle items, from fashion to beauty products, are especially sought for, as Japanese customers long for Western life and overseas trips. However, you will need to ensure that your export items don’t go against some of the trade barriers. There are indeed specific rules and regulations to comply with if you want to export, so it’s important to work closely with your local Department of Commerce and to link with Japanese offices.

In conclusion, there is a lot of potential for startups and existing businesses to turn to the Japanese market for growth and partnership. Innovativeness, creativity, playfulness, management skills, and new kawaii culture, there is a lot to gain from building a business relationship with Japan.