There are millions of entrepreneurs, but only a tiny percentage of them ever become true leaders within their respective fields. What qualities and practices make it possible for owners of small businesses to develop leadership potential? While there’s no set formula for achieving such a high-level goal, anyone who starts a company can make a solid effort to maximize their chances of reaching the heights of their chosen industry.
It’s no coincidence that most of the visible, successful owners and entrepreneurs in every industry are heavily involved in community service projects, not just as participants but as motivators who spearhead efforts of various kinds. They also cosign for student loans when promising employees need help paying for college. Other effective approaches to building leadership skills include joining speakers’ bureaus and professional organizations. Consider using one or more of the following tactics if you want to become a leader within your segment of the business community.
Champion Community Service Projects
Pick one or two community service programs in your local area and get behind them 100%. It helps to select causes you believe in and are willing to devote time to. It’s not about giving loads of cash to charities. Instead, become personally involved as a board member, volunteer leader, or fundraiser. The goal is to get your company’s name and brand in the public eye, support a worthy charitable organisation, and acquire a few valuable skills along the way. Down the road this is also a great way to invest in employee development because you can bring your team in with you when you work to support the causes of your choice.
Co-sign for Student Loans
Co-signing for a student loan can change someone’s life. Without a co-signer, some applicants don’t stand a chance of being approved or getting a competitive interest rate. Be selective with your choices in this regard. It’s wise to limit the field of potential candidates to your top employees who need the financial boost to get funding for higher education. Your signature gives them a chance to attend college on a part-time or full-time basis, in person or remotely, while continuing to work for your business on a scaled-back basis. It’s a fact that owners who co-sign for their employees’ education loans tend to have the most loyal workforces.
Sign Up with a Speakers’ Bureau
Write at least two presentations and sign up with a local speakers’ service. Expect to do at least one audition for the bureau before they send you out on assignments, some of which are paid. Your goal here is to establish your business as a leader in the industry and build your personal brand as an expert.
Take Continuing Education Courses
It’s imperative to stay ahead of the information curve within your chosen field. If your company offers tax preparation services, take timely courses and seminars that cover the latest laws, auditing procedures, and filing guidelines. Seek out the best continuing education courses available. If there are none in your local area, travel to the closest cities to acquire fresh, relevant knowledge that will set you apart from most of your competitors. If you have an idea for a course, take the time to develop a pertinent syllabus and offer it, for a fee, to prospective attendees who can benefit from your unique knowledge and experience.
What type of business do you run? Is it small or large? Are you self-employed? Whatever your business looks like, it’s worth thinking about the type of cover you’ll need in order to protect you, your employees and your company from any unexpected costs that may arise.
That’s why it’s incredibly important to take out the insurance you need in order to be legally compliant. It’s also worth considering cover that’s tailored to the sector or niche you work in. This article will explain how you can protect your business as it operates on a daily basis.
For instance, you may face the issue of stock damage, interruption with your suppliers or various legal fees that have been charged by a customer making a claim.
If you do experience a surprising setback, at least you’ll receive a little peace of mind knowing that you’ve implemented the appropriate cover and protection to help keep your business safe.
In addition, if you regularly work with clients and you have suitable business insurance in place, this can help make you seem more credible and appear to be a trustworthy and reliable business to work with.
Overall, business insurance will give you and your employees the confidence in knowing that everyone is protected should any unforeseen circumstances occur.
Am I required by law to take out insurance?
If you’re an employer, you are certainly required by law to take out the appropriate insurance. You must have employers’ liability insurance to cover any costs for your employees should they become injured while at work on your premises.
Plus, if you use vehicles to support the nature of your business, you’ll need to take out commercial motor insurance. If you have employees that drive company vehicles to transport, carry or deliver goods, you’ll need to ensure they are covered.
What other types of insurance can be useful?
To protect your office building or warehouse, commercial property insurance could be useful to cover any fees required to take care of any damage, repair, or regular maintenance.
You may also need to take out additional insurance to cover any compensation claims made by your clients or customers if they believe they are owed money from you as a result of negligence, for instance.
A legal dispute of any kind can be stressful and damaging for each party involved, more so when a claim is brought against your business in a cross-border dispute. At the very minimum, there will be two jurisdictions and various international laws to contend with.
Your law firm may not be able to comply with legal matters in other jurisdictions. If you find yourself stuck in a cross-border dispute, you should seek advice from established litigation lawyers who are specially trained to handle these cases.
This guide will explore how cross-border disputes arise and some of the ways that these can be resolved.
What is a cross-border dispute?
Disputes can occur between two companies or a company and an individual. This is usually due to disagreements between shareholders, breaches of contract, insolvency and trade issues to name but a few.
A cross-border dispute can transpire if you have expanded your business overseas and a legal dispute occurs between you and a company in a different country. Difficulties can also result from cultural differences and expectations from foreign clients. Understanding how to work with clientele from other countries can help to offset the potential for disputes.
What factors must be considered during cross-border disputes?
When faced with a dispute brought against you from a business overseas, you must attain legal advice from a firm that relates to the jurisdiction in which the matter could be litigated. If you decide to go with a UK-based law firm, they may also instruct a foreign law firm to aid with the dispute.
Having to deal with several law firms can lead to a plethora of issues, including misunderstandings and time delays. This is why it’s important to choose a multi-jurisdictional and multi-lingual law firm to assist you in your cross-border dispute.
Jurisdiction is the term to describe the particular laws that apply in the country where the dispute is created. It can also refer to the authority given to the court to enact justice. The laws within each jurisdiction can vary significantly.
Commercial contracts will often integrate jurisdiction clauses that state where a dispute will be litigated if the dispute cannot be resolved. This means that the relevant parties involved will be informed of the jurisdiction and laws under which the dispute will be negotiated. It can also prevent one of the parties from commencing legal proceedings in an unfamiliar jurisdiction.
How can cross-border disputes be resolved?
Cross-border disputes are best left with experienced cross-border and litigation lawyers, who can easily help to settle the dispute. They can identify whether your contract has a jurisdiction clause or if a strategy needs to be created to navigate the different laws of the country where the dispute is taking place.
You could also try settling the dispute via alternative dispute resolution (ADR) before things escalate. Whether this is through arbitration or mediation, these steps can prevent matters from becoming hostile. Again, the law firm you decide to go with can help to build your case so that the dispute can be resolved as efficiently as possible.
Maybe you’ve heard or read the term “phishing” before and have wondered what, exactly, it was referring to. In the below article, we are going to discuss phishing, some of the most common ways cybercriminals attempt to use phishing tactics and how to guard against them.
What is phishing?
Phishing is a type of online fraud in which criminals impersonate a legitimate business to obtain sensitive information, such as passwords and credit card numbers. It is typically done through email or text messages that contain links to malicious websites or attachments containing malware, but it can also be done through social media and other online channels.
Phishing attacks usually target a wide range of victims and are often very sophisticated, making them difficult to detect. The best defence against phishing, whether you’re an individual or a business, is to remain vigilant and educate yourself about the different types of phishing attacks.
Below are some of the most common ways cybercriminals try to “phish” for sensitive information and gain unauthorised access.
Vishing is a form of phishing that uses voice messages sent over the phone, with the goal of obtaining sensitive information. It typically involves a caller pretending to be from a legitimate business or government agency and asking the victim to provide personal information such as passwords or banking details.
To guard yourself against vishing attacks, never give out personal information over the phone and always verify who is calling by asking for contact details.
If you are in doubt, hang up immediately and call the company or agency at a number you know to be legitimate. To play it even safer, there are helpful phone number ID tools that let you see where the number is coming from before you decide to pick up or call back.
Email phishing is where criminals send emails that appear to be from legitimate sources, such as banks or other financial institutions. The goal is to get users to click on malicious links or open attachments that contain malware or keyloggers.
Often, these emails will include a sense of urgency to increase the likelihood that users will respond. Examples of email phishing messages may include requests for personal information, passwords or security questions and answers.
To guard yourself against email phishing, it’s important to be aware of the tell-tale signs. These include messages that contain spelling and grammar mistakes, have generic salutations (such as “Dear Customer”), or ask for personal information.
It’s also important to never open attachments from suspicious emails and never click on any links contained in them.
Social Media Phishing
Social media phishing is when criminals pose as legitimate companies or individuals on social media platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter. They use these platforms to gain access to personal information and passwords and they are increasingly common.
To protect yourself from social media phishing attacks, be sure to only accept friend requests from people you know, never give out personal information in response to messages or posts and be aware of any suspicious activity on your account.
Spear phishing is a more targeted form of phishing attack, in which criminals target specific individuals or organisations. The criminals create a message that appears to come from someone the victim knows or trusts, such as a colleague or acquaintance. The goal is to get the victim to click on a malicious link or open an attachment that contains malware.
Be aware of spear phishing by never clicking on links or opening attachments from unknown sources, and always double-check the email address of the sender before taking any action.
Overall, phishing attacks have become increasingly sophisticated, making it difficult to recognize them. The best defense against phishing is to remain vigilant, educate yourself about the different types of attacks and take precautions to protect yourself. Be aware of the tell-tale signs and never give out personal information or click on suspicious links or attachments. Taking these steps can help you minimise your risk of falling victim to a phishing attack.
Everyone would like to lower the cost of their car insurance payments. However, not everybody actually looks at active ways to reduce the cost of their auto insurance.
If that’s you, it’s time to change your ways. So, check out the following helpful advice on how to quickly lower the cost of your car insurance.
Carefully Consider the Car You Drive
If you haven’t yet bought the car that you will be insuring, you should bear the cost of insurance in mind before deciding on the model you want to get as some vehicles are more expensive to insure than others.
For instance, sports cars will cost more to insure than sedans.
If the cost of insurance is one of your top priorities and you want to make savings quickly, you should consider changing the car you drive.
Park Your Car in a Safe Place
It might not be possible for you to keep your car in a safer place, but if it is possible, you could potentially make substantial savings on your car insurance. Vehicles that are kept off the road, such as in garages, cost less to insure because they won’t be as likely to be stolen by thieves or damaged by vandals.
So, if you have off-road parking available and aren’t making the most of it, change your ways. You can then lower your car insurance payments fast and ensure your car is kept safe.
Compare Quotes and Choose the Cheapest One
Often, the best way to lower the cost of your car insurance quickly is to shop around for your insurance. By comparing multiple insurance companies and getting quotes from different ones, you should be able to find cheaper auto insurance.
Furthermore, you don’t have to spend countless hours searching for the best deals. Instead, you can use a quick and easy-to-use online comparison site.
So, before you simply get your insurance from Progressive because the insurance company is one of the leading insurers around, for instance, make sure you compare other insurance company quotes.
Make Your Car Insurance Payments on an Annual Basis
While some costs can be cheaper to pay each month, you’ll typically pay more for your car insurance if you make payments on a monthly basis rather than paying for your insurance annually.
Paying one lump sum is often the cheaper option, so make sure you ask your insurer how much you could save by switching to an annual payment.
Get Black Box Insurance
Another option you’ll want to carefully consider in order to lower your car insurance payments is installing a telematics device in your car. With a black box policy, your insurance company will install a GPS-enabled device in your car or require you to download a smartphone app to monitor how safely you drive.
It can show insurance companies how fast you drive, how sharply you brake, what times of day or night you drive, and more. As long as you always drive safely, by installing a telematics device or using a telematics app, you can potentially significantly lower your insurance premium. So, ask your insurer about options for black box insurance.
If you drive your car a lot, this option won’t be useful. But if you only use your car now and then, you could get cheaper insurance.
The reason is drivers who drive fewer miles are less likely to be involved in road accidents. Therefore, they pose less of a risk.
Make sure you don’t lie about how many miles you drive to get cheaper insurance. If you do, your insurer might not pay out when you need to make a claim.
Depending on your personal circumstances, you could even consider driving less by switching to public transport or ride shares so that you drive fewer miles and can qualify for lower insurance costs.
Improve Your Credit Score
Many people don’t realise that their credit scores can make a difference in the cost of their car insurance. Whatever the reason, insurance companies tend to think people with poor credit scores are more at risk behind the wheels of their cars.
So, if you’re able to improve your credit score quickly, you could get cheaper auto insurance. Just make sure you then keep your credit score high.
In the Western educational system, including universities in the United States, essays are considered to be one of the most common types of written assignments. Such papers teach high school students to reason, draw conclusions, and make their points of view. However, only some have writing skills, and for many, it is quite challenging to cope with the stress that comes with the learning process.
A good research paper meets the requirements of the instructor. The student must fully disclose each question included in the prompt. In addition, a quality research paper includes required sections and many other nuances.
The structure of the essay should be easy to understand. The sentences should be coherent and understandable. Most importantly, all statements in the text should be supported by facts. This is very important, especially since you need to be careful if the topic of the paper is related to the exact sciences. Finally, spelling and grammar should also be flawless. It is not uncommon for students to lack knowledge in some subjects. If they feel they can’t handle research for a professional essay, they order one.
Many students pay for essays at Papersowl to guarantee a good result. They choose this service for the entirely original texts and because the quality is not compromised by the deadlines.
To Get More Time
In American colleges and universities, essays are assigned throughout the school year, and submitting the assignment on time is mandatory. However, not all students manage to write such works well, and others simply do not have time for it — there are sports sections, part-time jobs after classes, or even just leisure time with friends. In both cases, an assisted best essay writing service comes to the aid of students.
Today there is a wide range of services for writing texts. It is better to choose exclusively proven platforms. Pay attention to the rating from Guardian, which can improve the search for an author to create your essay. The resource evaluates all the sites’ advantages, allowing you to find the best paper writing service. Entrusting an assignment with professionals is sometimes the only way to turn in your work on time and get a good grade, instead of getting problems and accumulating bad grades.
Getting Better Grades
The most obvious reason why students order papers and essays is to get good grades. It won’t be a secret that a text written by a professional writer guarantees a student’s success. Getting a good grade by doing the work yourself is not as easy as it seems. The student doesn’t have the skills of a professional author and much free time.
There is no denying that essays are more difficult than other academic assignments. If you write an essay on your own, the teacher may not be satisfied with the quality of the work done. The reason may be the professor’s attitude or simply too demanding rules imposed on the text. Since such nuances directly affect the grades, you should be hedged. Essay writing services will do an excellent job. The teacher won’t be able to find anything to complain about when you have a perfectly written paper.
Dealing With Stress And Anxiety
Many students don’t consider essays their favourite task for many reasons. Such an assignment is quite long and complicated. Students also dislike research papers because they are important. Such assignments significantly affect students’ final grades, making texts unavoidable.
Creating a research paper can be a daunting task. Like any other writing assignment, an essay requires a certain set of steps to make your work comprehensive and striking. This and similar tasks can be a burden for the student. College life should be fun and relaxed, with plenty of leisure time. By taking advantage of professional writers, you can relieve yourself of the boredom and anxiety that writing difficult work causes. The nervous system is no joke, so don’t neglect it and underestimate the importance of mental health.
To Sum Up
Learning to create essays or papers competently and bringing your writing skills to perfection is significant. But sometimes, it’s necessary to have a plan to save time and get out of a jam. And you can’t do without the service if you can’t write papers quickly and well in stressful situations. In that case, pay for essay composed by professionals.
More and more, the idea of making business socially responsible has become urgent in light of the looming crisis. As the push to become eco-friendly intensifies, making commercial fleets sustainable is becoming the norm, especially for those of a considerable size. As a fleet manager, you must think about this while hiring and training drivers, monitoring fuel usage, performing fleet vehicle maintenance, and tracking all your expenditures.
If you’re figuring out how to manage your fleet sustainably, here are six tips you can take as a fleet manager:
1. Maintain Your Fleet
While it’s true that trucks are built to last, that doesn’t mean they can do without routine maintenance, especially diesel-powered engines.
Diesel-powered vehicles have aftertreatment systems that regulate the amount of greenhouse gases released by fuel combustion. These systems require regular maintenance, which can be challenging if your fleet is large. Moreover, the aftertreatment system steps can be complicated to handle for small crews. Fortunately, you can hire professional technicians to cover maintenance needs.
2. Screen All Drivers
Sustainable commercial fleet management may involve thoroughly screening all your drivers before hiring them. Since they’ll handle your trucks for most of your operational time, they must be trustworthy.
You’ll need to confirm their driving license, conduct background checks, and validate their driving skills. If they don’t match your standards, you may have to train them or keep looking for those that qualify. Remember, unqualified drivers may affect the cost of your insurance coverage and set you back on your sustainability goals.
3. Equip Each Truck With The Latest Technology
Managing your fleet involves more than buying the latest trucks, getting qualified drivers, and letting them drive independently. You must also ensure that each vehicle is installed with proper technology before it hits the road.
For instance, installing an electronic logging device (ELD) helps you get details about your truck before, during, and after use. Smart usage of technology has allowed companies to roll back their energy consumption. This may be a significant factor in furthering your efforts for greening your operations. Consider talking with experts to see how you can best equip your fleet for optimal fuel usage.
4. Go Paperless
Drivers find it hard to keep up with paperwork during long shifts. It’s not uncommon to end up with incorrect or incomplete reports that lead to compliance issues. Therefore, as a fleet manager, consider using virtual logging systems to reduce administrative costs, track drivers’ reporting time quickly, and maximize uptime.
With these digitalised recording systems, you give contracted drivers a way to better manage their driving time and mileage by accurately recording their performance.
5. Use Efficient Routes
Optimising your fleet’s routes is another way to increase fuel efficiency and enhance productivity. Therefore, you should always keep track of what’s happening on your preferred roads to increase the yield for every haul.
Using appropriate tracking systems such as GPS can help you gather information about your drivers’ routes, identify the problems they encounter, and find possible remedies or alternatives. For example, it may help your fleet discover a shorter, more reliable course if some trips need to be combined, and whether there’s any fuel wastage. This will help reduce fuel expenditure, reduce carbon emissions, and keep you on track with your sustainability goals.
6. Choose Eco-Friendly Vehicles
If you plan to expand your fleet or replace your existing trucks with the latest models, consider investing in ones that match your sustainability goals.
The best choice is to invest in eco-friendly vehicles such as electric trucks. These don’t emit greenhouse gases as long as they’re charged with energy from renewable sources. Therefore, going electric can shrink your entire fleet’s total emissions during your business’s lifetime. Investing in electric trucks will also cut operational spending, help you adapt to changes in the market, and grant you more resources and funding to direct to other important aspects of your business.
Sustainability Is The Path Forward
Making commercial fleet management eco-friendly requires commitment and determination, juggling compliance needs, customer service, and green goals. Fortunately, these tips should provide fleet managers like you with clear starting points for building a sustainability strategy that also promises growth. Start by outlining your objectives, such as reducing your carbon footprint or upgrading your fleet in a year. Then, craft strategies to meet these objectives.
Sustainability will require a considerable amount of investment. But in light of the benefits for everyone in the globe overall, the effort and resources you put in are worthwhile. Take the first steps to greener fleet management today.
Technological advancements led to the evolution of payment options, specifically virtual payment cards. Many companies have recently started incorporating virtual payment cards into their operations. Most consider it a way to streamline the purchasing process while maintaining control over the organisation.
What Is A Virtual Payment Card?
A virtual payment card works in the same manner as a conventional payment card, but the only difference is that it’s an online card. It’s a simple, safe alternative that makes electronic-based payments more efficient.
A virtual payment card, whether you have a virtual debit card or credit card, only exists online and is linked to your actual bank card via a 16-digit number you generate at random. Depending on your card, you can specify a spending limitation plus an expiration date. Making the right configurations keeps your main bank card account safe while preventing fraudulent purchases.
Reasons Why Companies Are Switching To Virtual Payment Cards
The streamlined payment process and convenience that virtual payment cards provide make them a worthwhile addition to any company. Below are reasons why it may be time to jump in with the transition.
1. Makes The Accounts Payable Operations Efficient
Switching to virtual payment cards is one of the best ways to avoid potential inconsistencies when using paper checks. If the accounts payable department in your organisation is struggling with the processing task, the transition to virtual payment cards will help streamline the process.
This can help the department save time on writing checks or metering envelopes. Additionally, it lessens the possibility of human error.
2. Provides A Better Level Of Security
Over the years, the conventional methods of using physical cards have brought about various cases of cybersecurity threats, such as payment fraud. Due to the increasing cases of fraudulent payments, companies need to implement better online payment practices. It’s one of the reasons why switching to virtual payment cards is safer and more secure. Moreover, it’s possible since you can pre-configure a specific maximum spending limit.
With virtual payment cards, you can terminate the account. It may be a wise move to make if there’s a possible data breach. Every transaction involving virtual payment cards has a one-time use bank number for every payment instead of utilizing the same bank numbers for third parties all the time.
3. Streamlines E-Commerce Processes
Another advantage is that they work around the clock, making it easier to do various transactions, including international ones. It’s one of the reasons it stands out from traditional banks.
Going to a physical branch can be a hassle. But with virtual payment cards, everything becomes more efficient. It only takes a few clicks on a computer or phone to work out transactions online to ensure all business operations flow efficiently. Virtual payment cards eliminate the need for cumbersome paperwork and manual errors.
4. Cuts Down On Unnecessary Company Spending
A virtual payment card may be worth considering to limit company spending. The feature of the card that allows setting spending limits will ensure employees have boundaries when it comes to spending. Depending on the card, an employee can receive notifications if they have reached the set limit or will be declined based on the controls in place. This allows you to maintain a strong hold on the budget during payments and lets your employees know how much they have to spend.
5. Improves Employee Trust And Independence
Switching to virtual payment cards has several benefits. This includes enabling businesses to empower their workforce, building trust, enhancing overall transparency, and increasing efficiency. It’s one way to authorize and monitor employee spending in real time via a computer or mobile application. This way, you can provide your employees with a better level of control while at the same time boosting their confidence to do their best.
6. Earns Cash-Back Rebates For Transactions
When a company makes payments to vendors, it allows them to earn cash-back rebates. Generally, it’s considered free money that requires no effort to obtain. As your company uses virtual payment cards, the overall rebate grows and eventually accumulates a decent sum you can reinvest.
As business operations continue to evolve and become more streamlined in delivering efficiency, your company must maintain an edge, which may be possible by switching to virtual payment cards. Working with the right provider will ensure the efficiency of your business. With the benefits a virtual payment card offers, the transition may be worth it to boost efficiency and streamline operations to a whole new level.
Call tracking is a unique analytics tool that enables you to track all your incoming and outgoing customer calls. It also provides crucial data surrounding your marketing performance, giving you the means to analyse and adjust your activities where necessary.
You’ll receive essential data on each of your customer calls, including things such as:
Caller phone numbers
Call abandonment rate
Caller area code
You’ll also have access to a variety of important metrics to help you analyse your marketing. Some of these include:
Calls from your pay per click (PPC) activity – This will reveal all the calls you receive from customers who funnel through your pay-per-click ads.
Marketing activities that deliver inbound enquiries – This will show which of your activities are driving customers to enquire about your product or service.
Website visits from each marketing source – Using dynamic phone numbers, the software will show you which marketing sources led customers to visit your website
Relevant keywords mentioned in calls – You’ll be able to establish a range of important keywords which are important to your business, and see when they’re mentioned in customer calls.
You can also receive a range of detailed insights and reports on customer engagement, which you can then use to create customer journey maps.
This will show you every marketing touchpoint visited by each customer as they interact with your business, showing you a complete overview of where they journeyed to before, during, and after they called.
You’ll also see the journeys of customers who didn’t call, for a more in-depth picture of your customer engagement.
How can call tracking rescue your marketing?
There are many different ways you can use call tracking to revamp your marketing. This includes, but is not limited to:
Full visibility on marketing performance
One of the key benefits of call tracking is that it gives you total visibility on your marketing performance, which is important for boosting your leads and sales.
To make the most impactful changes to your marketing, you need to first have the clearest overview of how it’s performing, and how every customer is interacting with your marketing activity.
These insights and reports will help you track the journeys of each customer, covering every area of your marketing – from each activity, to different campaigns and channels.
Enhanced marketing activities
You can also use the software to enhance your marketing activities. With a clear insight into your marketing performance, you’ll know which areas are delivering the highest number of leads and sales.
For instance, you might discover that your social media ads are producing the most leads and sales, such as inbound enquiries from phone calls you receive.
As a result, you can direct more of your marketing efforts towards social media ads – or content similar to it – since this is evidently the strongest type of activity for your business.
This way, you can increase the number of leads and sales being generated across your marketing, and only invest in strategies which are proven to be successful.
Now you know how call tracking can save your marketing, make sure you find the best software for your business and implement it now.
With running a business, there’s a balance between overhead and profit. Your overhead needs to be low enough to maximise profit, but you also need to invest enough back into your company to grow. One method a lot of businesses use to strike this balance is outsourcing.
Outsourcing is when you pay someone else to perform a task for you. There are a lot of options for outsourcing, but if you invest in the right relationships with other companies, it can help grow both businesses and help you focus on what matters. Whatever field you’re involved in, below are five things to outsource for your business.
Information Technology (IT)
One popular part of business to outsource is information technology (IT). IT is how you keep your network, devices, and information safe. If you can’t afford to hire a full IT staff, you can hire a professional IT firm to do it for you. If you aren’t a technology company, outsourcing your IT needs might be the right move. It will eliminate stress and keep your overhead lower by having less employees. Tech companies typically have their own IT staff, but if you want to protect your network, data, and devices but aren’t involved in tech you can outsource these services.
Like IT, risk management is not a part of every company. It is a specialised industry that a lot of businesses don’t do themselves. It’s no surprise that a lot of people opt for third party risk management. In business, there is a lot of risk. It’s imperative to manage a lot of risks. For example, you might not know all the financial laws and regulations.
You might not understand financial crimes and all the due diligence involved in complying to federal, state, and local regulations. Risk managers provide answers to your questions and consulting on how to avoid fees, high taxes, and other problems for businesses. When it comes to risk, unless you are a huge company you are probably outsourcing to a third party.
Another task you can outsource is Cloud storage. Any business has a lot of data, files, and information they need to keep safe. Whatever field you are in, it’s important to properly store data. If you have your servers on-site, you are also putting all this information at risk for physical damage. A flood or an earthquake could damage the servers, possibly resulting in loss of extremely important data. Data is valuable. Even if you aren’t in tech, Cloud storage is necessary. If you don’t know what you are doing and can’t afford to hire staff to help, you should outsource Cloud storage.
Delivery & Shipping
Are you spending too much on deliveries and shipping services? You don’t need to have all that infrastructure in place to run a successful business. In fact, other businesses are already better at it than you are. If you are spending a fortune on delivery and shipping costs, striking a deal with a big company for all your needs could end up benefiting you both. It depends on the products that you are selling, but if you don’t need to do the shipping yourself you might be able to lay off those drivers, sell those trucks, and make a reasonable deal by outsourcing.
Gone are the days where you need to have an admin, or a receptionist seated at the front desk. Fewer and fewer people are coming into the office anyway. These days, there are companies that specialise in administrative work. With advanced software and tech that organises information better than humans, a lot of the work isn’t even done by employees. When you are looking to lower your overhead, try outsourcing administrative services.
You don’t need to always hire employees full-time for specific jobs. Instead, there are a lot of things that you can outsource to other companies and create good deals that benefit you and your business. Whatever field you are in, outsourcing is a good option.
The way that society is progressing leads to fewer jobs for human beings and more jobs for machines. What will humans do? This is a larger question than we can answer, but if you are trying to make a better life for you and your family by increasing profit and lowering overhead, outsourcing is one of the ways you can do it.
In the digital age, traditional business cards have taken a back seat to newer and more efficient methods of exchanging contact information. As businesses begin to explore digital options for their business cards, it’s clear that these technological upgrades can change the business world in ways beyond just making people look more cutting-edge.
Introducing digital business cards can affect how quickly individuals and companies establish new connections with potential partners while improving the quality of connectivity. This article looks at how digital business cards are shaking up the business world, providing new avenues to create quality connections.
1. They Are More Accessible And User-Friendly
To start with, e business cards are more accessible and user-friendly than traditional ones. For individuals who don’t have access to printing services at work, it can be challenging to create physical business cards if they need them urgently. Similarly, if someone is using a phone or tablet instead of a computer with access to printing facilities, having a printed card can be impractical.
With the accessibility of digital business cards, information can be easily shared with multiple people at one time, quickly establishing connections between different individuals within and outside the company.
2. They Are Cost-Effective
Adopting a digital business card is an excellent way for businesses to cut costs since it eliminates the expenses associated with printing physical cards. For example, when you print traditional business cards, you often have to pay for printing services, graphic design services, and postage.
However, going digital eliminates these costs as your company can create QR codes or signatures free of charge. Additionally, digital business cards are stored in the cloud on platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter rather than in folders in desk drawers, so they are less likely to get lost or damaged over time. This means that the cost savings from adopting a digital format only increases over time as businesses realize the benefits of going digital.
3. They Increase The Speed And Quality Of Connections
In addition to being cost-effective, digital business cards significantly impact how quickly businesses can form meaningful connections with potential customers. It allows individuals to connect instantly by scanning a QR code or searching someone’s social media profile. This eliminates the time investment required in exchanging traditional business cards and the need to trade contact information over email or phone.
Additionally, since these connections are typically made through platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter, there is often far more detail available about a company than what can be gleaned from its physical business card alone. This means that you can access not only the company’s contact information but also its work history and skillset. This allows you to quickly vet a potential partnership before deciding whether or not to pursue it. In the end, it helps businesses make more informed decisions.
4. They Are Easier To Update
Another reason why digital business cards are becoming increasingly popular is that they are easier to update. For example, if you need to add additional contact information like a phone number or an updated address, all you have to do is log into your account and make the necessary changes.
Errors in your contact details are less likely to be encountered with digital business cards, saving you from dealing with issues like unanswered calls or misdirected mail. Additionally, since these updates are typically made in real-time, people who receive your digital business card are constantly updated with accurate information about you and your company.
5. They Are Eco-Friendly
Making your business sustainable also means doing your part to care for the environment. Digital business cards are far more environmentally friendly than their physical counterparts because they do not require printing services and produce fewer waste materials. Additionally, if you link your digital business card to a social media profile like LinkedIn, that too has a positive impact on the environment since it requires less paper for upkeep due to its online presence.
This is especially true for businesses that typically use large amounts of paper. Adopting digital business cards can make a significant difference in terms of resource consumption and environmental impact. Therefore, if you’re looking for an innovative business improvement, this is it.
Digital business cards are shaking up the business world by providing ways to form new and meaningful connections more quickly and more cost-effectively. Whether it’s through social media platforms or innovative QR codes, there are many different methods for businesses to go digital and reap the benefits of improved quality of connectivity. If you’re looking for ways to stay ahead of your competitors, consider adopting a digital business card today!
Data breaches can even lead to business shutdowns. Shocking, isn’t it? Even if an enterprise is thriving and leading the competition every day, everything can go in vain with a single cyber-attack. With customer trust lost, the organisation’s secrets out, and a bad reputation, it is almost impossible to reach the same position in the market.
Therefore, it is crucial to improve your company’s data security and keep your consumers’ trust intact. Any lapses in this regard can cost dearly to companies in the long run. It is what this post is all about. Stay with us as we shed light on how to keep your data safe for a long time.
Companies that want 100% data security should seek SalvageData recovery professionals’ assistance. They have a team of highly qualified and experienced technicians who are proficient in corporate data safety measures. Businesses, especially small businesses, should hire these services to safeguard their sensitive information from hackers.
Use Strong Passwords
First of all, businesses should consider using strong passwords to protect their company data. With advanced cyber-attack techniques, hackers can crack weak passwords within no time. So, ensure you use long, complex, hard-to-guess passwords for all your corporate databases.
Companies can also consider investing in password manager software programs. It can save all the passwords and keep them safe using advanced encryption. Authorised employees can access this program to get relevant usernames and passwords. Consult an expert to learn how a strong password protects from data breaches?
It is high time companies start raising awareness about the phishing and hacking activities going on in the corporate world. Professionals should be hired to explain the ABCs of cybersecurity to the company employees. Regular training and workshops can prepare employees to combat security threats. You should also discuss the common phishing schemes targeted to extract sensitive data from systems.
Invest in Anti-Malware Tools
Next in line is the anti-malware tools. Companies, especially into healthcare interoperability, should definitely consider investing in antivirus tools. These tools create a protective shield around the corporate data system. They are effective enough to diffuse any phishing attempts made by hackers.
Therefore, every gadget connected to the office network should have antivirus and firewall software. These tools will make it impossible for hackers to reach sensitive business and customer data. Companies can also hire professionals to learn about privacy risks and data security considerations for healthcare interoperability.
What is encryption? It is an advanced cyber safety technology that ensures your business and consumer data remains safe from external threats. First of all, make sure all your company’s gadgets are encrypted. Apart from this, emails should also be encrypted to offer supreme data security. Secondly, set up a VPN – Virtual Private Network on all the business devices.
And how can VPN help? For instance, an employee uses a restaurant’s Wi-Fi to operate his smartphone. Such networks usually don’t offer encryption. A VPN will safeguard the information stored on the smartphone. Hackers will not be able to access this data at any cost. You can consult an expert to learn about it.
Take a Backup
Last but not least, companies should regularly take a backup of their data. Because losing a crucial customer or business data can cripple an enterprise. Several data backup software are available in the market. Companies should choose the one that can provide them with the best data protection.
So, this was all about how to keep your corporate data safe in these highly volatile times. With the rate at which cybercrime is increasing every day, you never know when its clutches will reach your enterprise. With these security tips, you can minimise the data breach risk and ensure seamless business continuity.
Accidents are a part and parcel of managing a large and active fleet, and is something that fleet managers and operators should be ready for at all times. Apart from affecting the safety, security and morale of drivers, accidents can be fairly disruptive to modern fleets, requiring substantial time and effort to assess the situation, investigate, and deal with the legal issues that are set to arise.
Being largely inevitable in this business, fleet managers and operators should focus on developing an appropriate response system for dealing with such events, with the objective of maximising driver and vehicle safety, followed by minimal disruptions to operations, in this exact order.
The first thing to do in such cases is to stay calm and assess the situation on hand, by getting in touch with the driver, passenger, or other parties on the ground. Once you’ve ascertained the safety and wellbeing of all the parties, you can then call 911 to report any injuries.
If it was a minor accident, and there are no injuries, you can take down the details and then file a report with the police at a later point in time once all the facts are clear.
Document The Accident
Following the initial response, it is then time to gather and document as much information regarding the incident as possible. This includes the names and contact details of all the parties involved, along with the make and model of the vehicles, and the details of any witnesses, along with their statements.
Make sure to take extensive photographs of the accident scene, along with any skid marks, and damages incurred by the vehicles and other property. It is also recommended to record the road, traffic, and weather conditions at the time of the accident.
Notify The Relevant Parties
Once you’ve gathered all the relevant information, it’s time to inform the relevant parties, including the insurance company, the police, and other relevant stakeholders.
It is also recommended to keep your fleet management software provider in the loop, as they might help in managing and fast-tracking the claims process.
Have A Lawyer On Retainer
Most large fleet owners and companies have in-house counsel to deal with accidents and the various legal issues that come with the same. Smaller fleets can have experienced car accident attorneys on retainer, as part of the best practices recommended by https://www.daveabels.com/
Experienced legal counsel will help take the matter forward, and after going through your initial findings, they can help in investigating further to ascertain where the blame lies, along with ways in which legal claims can be avoided by the company.
Conduct A Thorough Investigation
In order to understand the true cause of the accident, while also minimizing such risks in the future, it is essential to conduct a thorough internal investigation. This includes going through the vehicle’s maintenance records, drivers logs, and other relevant documentation in search for anything that may point towards the actual cause.
Once the cause is arrived at, the necessary preventative measures can be taken to minimize such incidents in the future. The outcome of the investigation can be used to review and update the fleet’s policies and procedures accordingly.
Accidents are often an inevitable part of fleet management, and the only way to deal with them is by preparing for them. With clear policies, procedures, and communications, an accident shouldn’t result in any major harm to personnel, customers, drivers, or operations.
United Kingdom, 2022 – Acquisition International Magazine has announced the winners of the 2022 Corporate Social Responsibility Awards
For many, 2022 was a year of recovery and strength, but, for all, it was also an opportunity to build more experience within a plethora of sectors. Here we see a selection of businesses that stretch from solid CSR training solutions to excellent ESG consulting, and innovative digital financial crime technologies to fabulous luxury architecture.
These accolades are truly testament to their hard work and ability to apply experience, knowledge, and passion to business – for the greater good of our future. Keeping things fresh, these companies provide peace of mind, assistance, and dedicated care so that we can all flourish.
Celebrating the astonishing achievements of this year’s winners, Awards Coordinator, Kaven Cooper, commented: “The Corporate Social Responsibility Awards have been a great opportunity to praise those making a difference in their industries, and Acquisition International is proud to present our awardees. We wish them all the very best for the future.”
A bright new year is upon us and we’re excited to see what it brings for all of these businesses, and many more. Acquisition International is excited to see 2023 unfold, and we look forward to your perusal of this issue – we wish you a very happy and prosperous new year!
Acquisition International is a monthly magazine brought to you by AI Global Media Ltd, a publishing house that has reinvigorated corporate finance news and reporting. Its topical news articles make it a valued read, and this readability ensures that advertisers will benefit greatly from their investment.
AI works alongside leading industry analysts to ensure we publish the most up-to-date figures and analysis. The magazine has a global circulation, which brings together all parties involved in deal making and, in an increasingly global deal market, we are uniquely positioned to reach the deal makers that matter.
About AI Global Media
Since 2010 AI Global Media has been committed to creating engaging B2B content that informs our readers and allows them to market their business to a global audience. We create content for and about firms across a range of industries.
Today, we have 14 unique brands, each of which serves a specific industry or region. Each brand covers the latest news in its sector and publishes a digital magazine and newsletter which is read by a global audience. Our flagship brand, Acquisition International, distributes a monthly digital magazine to a global circulation of 108,000, who are treated to a range of features and news pieces on the latest developments in the global corporate market.
Alongside this, we have a luxury-lifestyle magazine, LUXlife, which appeals to a range of high-net-worth individuals, offering them insight into the latest products, experiences, and innovations to ensure they can live the high-life to its fullest.
Many people find binary options trading complicated; the majority don’t even know where to start. Well, this is true if you don’t have the right information and the necessary tools to equip you when betting on these types of investments. Binary trading can be very profitable if done correctly. Unlike traditional forex trading, binary options trading is much simpler and quicker to understand.
With this type of investment, it is easy to make a lot of money in a very short time, but it is also easy to lose a lot of money over the same short period. This guide will show you how to open a binary account, start trading binary options, and make money in seven simple steps. Keep reading.
A Step-By-Step Guide to Trading Successfully
Trading binary options is not a market you should toy with. You need to get a good broker and develop a binary strategy before you stake any real money.
1. Find a good broker
One of the top things you need to note on your to-do list is to find a good broker. There are two types of brokers, there are those that are high-risk takers and those that like to manage their risk to a minimum. You need to determine where your preferences lie before investing. You should also look into their reviews and only work with the most well-known and trustworthy brokers.
2. Create an account
Before you can begin trading binary options, you need to open an account with a broker. Opening an account is usually easy, below are the steps to follow when opening a binary options account:
● Get internet access
Connect your preferred device to a stable internet connection. Unstable Internet speeds up the process and can cause you to lose money if you trade in real time.
● Pick a trusted broker
Learn the advantages and drawbacks of the brokers you wish to work with. Choose one that suits your needs best.
● Open and activate your account
Once you pick a trusted broker, you can create an account with them. You must provide your information in order to sign up with them. These include your name, email, password, country, currency, еtс.
● Start using your trading account
Once you have registered with the broker, they provide you with two accounts: a demo account and a live account. You are required to activate the latter by placing real funds in it. A demo account enables you to learn how to trade using dummy funds.
3. Pick an asset to trade
Binary options trading offers traders multiple assets to trade with. The variety and number of assets available vary from broker to broker. However, most brokers have a list of popular assets displayed on their sites. These popular markets include currency pairs, commodities, stocks and indices.
4. Select the closure time
The time of closure, also referred to as the expiry time, is the period at which the contract is executed and closed. Initially, the binary market only permitted short expiry dates. However, over the years, the growth of the market has enabled a wide range of expiry dates that go up to a full year. Closure time is generally classified into three groups: short-term, normal time, and long-term.
5. Determining the size of your trade
At this point, you need to determine the type of lot you wish to buy or sell. You need to consider the size or percentage you are willing to risk. Seasoned traders understand the risks involved and only stake 1% to 2% of their 100% investment.
6. Buy or sell
Binary options trading allows traders to predict whether the price of an asset will go up or down by the time set. If the price of the asset is expected to rise above the strike price, you buy the asset; if its price is expected to fall below the strike price, you sell the asset.
7. Confirm your trade
Before you confirm your trade for it to go through, ensure that you check if all the details are correct. If there are changes to be made, they should be rectified before confirming the trade.
If you are looking forward to trading binary options, we hope this article will help you start. Binary options trading is very simple because it focuses on price and time. Having the right strategies to read market conditions will help you make correct predictions.
Container hire specialist Mobile Mini UK has announced that Modulaire Group, the parent company of Algeco, Europe’s leading modular solutions brand, is acquiring Mobile Mini UK Holdings Limited (Mobile Mini UK) from Mobile Mini, Inc.
With a national network of 16 locations in the UK, Mobile Mini UK is one of the leading suppliers of steel storage units and anti-vandal portable offices and toilets. It operates a fleet of over 42,000 units for customers across sectors including construction, retail, manufacturing, healthcare, and education. The product offering is homogenous with the existing Algeco range. Together Algeco and Mobile Mini UK will create the UK’s largest accommodation hire fleet with 82,000 units.
The two organisations are closely aligned in their values too. They have shared commitments to market leading health and safety standards, as well as equality, diversion and inclusivity. Ethics play an important role in the way both do business, so customers and stakeholders can trust Algeco and Mobile Mini UK to do the right thing at all times.
Expansion in container solutions, which have seen strong growth in the last two years despite market conditions, will add strength to the Algeco organisation and continue to broaden and improve services to customers, who demand quality available accommodation, delivered quickly.
This acquisition further demonstrates the Algeco commitment to its strategy of building a sustainable future that is focused on its three core pillars of Environment, Social and Governance (ESG), with circularity, adaptability, and leasing at the core.
Tom Bruyea, Managing Director, Mobile Mini UK, said: “Mobile Mini UK has made tremendous progress over the past decade, which all our people should be very proud of. I’m certain that the business will continue to go from strength to strength under Algeco stewardship.”
Mark Higson, Group Chief Executive Officer of Modulaire Group, added: “Mobile Mini is a strong, strategic fit for Algeco and the combination of the two companies will drive significant value for both customers and stakeholders. It will help us further deliver the Algeco Vision to be the market leader in modular and temporary accommodation, operating as a trusted solutions adviser to customers.”
No matter how big or small your organisation is, there is always a call for creating a better team environment. This aids not only better communication between departments (which can make for faster and better solutions to business issues) but also increased respect and responsibility between staff in the same departments – and ultimately and increase in stff retention.
Which company away-days are nothing new, there is a growing trend towards doing something outside of your comfort zone, and going on a short sailing expedition is fast becoming one of the most popular team-building activities.
Many tour and travel operators that previous specialised in yacht charter holidays (such as PlainSailing.com) are starting to offer team-building sailing expedition packages that can take as short as a few days and as long as a week, and are goal-orientated.
Before you head off to organise your own company away-day, it is important to choose the right package that can meet your needs.
The boat is the most important component of the package and you can’t deny its impact on the entire sailing trip. If you have the sailing qualifications across your team you can take it bareboat, but more common is taking the boat with a skipper.
You can opt for a yacht (better sailing experience, and closer working environment) or catamaran (bigger and more spacious, and allows for better socialising in the evenings, when you’re not sailing). It’s also dependent on the number of people who want to go. If you have a large number of people then it is best to hire a catamaran that can accommodate all these people together.
There are also trimarans that are advanced and more spacious compared to any other version of catamarans.
While choosing the package, you have options available to choose the food and drinks that are being provided by the company itself. If you have opted for a big enough boats like a catamaran, you have plenty of chances to have an onboard kitchen that can perfectly outstandingly meet your needs, and you can even have a hostess and chef on board to help out too – so your team can concentrate on making memories together.
Other sailing vacation packages also include several gears for the aqua activities that offer a splendid option to enjoy the time with the adventure activities. You could add scuba diving and snorkelling to your itinerary, for the best possible chance to enjoy the blue waters.
Sailing is the best way to unlock the beauty of several locations like the Caribbean islands, Bahamas, Florida, Hawaiian, Greece, the Coast of Australia and New Zealand, and the Caribbean Sea. All of these locations are meant to offer you a great experience and an unexpected and unlimited excitement that people want to get during their vacation those not land-based vacation destinations can offer.
The next time you’re looking to book a team-building experience for your company, sailing is definitely one to be considered. No more waiting around or playing games in stuffy hotel conference rooms, but actually making a boat sail, by working together and pushing new boundaries.
Reducing your energy usage can create some significant savings and free up money to invest in other areas of your business. Here’s how you can cut energy costs:
Switch your energy supplier
There’s no right or wrong way to pick an energy supplier but it’s possible that you’re missing out on better-value deals. With 40 different energy providers of varying sizes active in the UK, it’s worth checking out the competition and seeing if they can offer you better saving opportunities.
Putting your energy spending under a microscope and analysing where you could make some cutbacks is a great way to make some meaningful changes in your company. An energy audit determines where your energy is being spent and can verify the effectiveness of any energy-efficiency projects you implement.
Once you have the information you can use this to improve efficiency and reduce your energy costs. This frees up money to invest in other sectors of your company and optimise any future spending.
Keep the office warm and your bills low
Keeping your workspaces warm is great for worker morale but the matching energy bill isn’t good for your finances. There are, however, plenty of ways of insulating offices and workspaces that won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
For example, loading bays are often chilly but you can keep employees toasty by installing PVC strip curtains. These act as the perfect barrier between the building and the outside elements, and even better – you won’t be whacked with a bill every single month for using them.
Switch off computers and other equipment
It can be difficult to enforce rules about switching out equipment overnight but doing so can prevent energy wastage. This is money straight out of your pocket which could be better spent elsewhere in your business.
Prevent overspending by installing fluorescent bulbs, motion-sensor lighting, and energy-efficient equipment. This includes anything with an A+ rating that will not only lead to cheaper energy bills but offset the initial cost of the equipment.
Promotional products are a great way for businesses to get their message out to potential customers. They are an important tool in any marketing strategy, as they can be used to build brand awareness, increase visibility and engage customers. From pens and mugs to hats and t-shirts, there’s a wide range of promotional products available that can be used to promote your business. With the right product and message, you can create a lasting impression among customers and drive more sales. In this blog post, we’ll discuss why promotional products are key in marketing and how you can use them to your advantage.
You Can Customise Your Promotional Products
Not only are promotional products easy to order and customise, but they are also easy to order in bulk. I’m not talking about the “standard” promotional products like pens, key chains, and t-shirts. I’m talking about promotional products that are custom-made.
You can create custom reusable cups, pens, key chains, and t-shirts that have your company logo on them. You can create custom pens that have your company logo printed on them. You can create custom t-shirts that have your company logo printed on them. You can create custom key chains that have your company logo printed on them.
All of these promotional products can be customised to your liking. They can be made for a specific event or for a specific promotion.
You can create a custom pen that has your company logo on it and then you can hand it out at events or you can give it away as a gift to customers.
They Are Cost-Effective
When you order promotional products from an online source, you are saving money. There are no shipping costs involved with ordering promotional products from an online source. Plus, you are also saving money on printing costs because you’re not printing the promotional product yourself.
You’re printing the promotional product, but the company that is making the promotional product is printing your logo on it and then they are shipping it to you. This is a much cheaper way to get your brand out there than if you were to print it yourself and ship it yourself.
They Create Brand Recognition
Promotional products are a great way to build brand recognition for your business because they give people a reason to talk about your business when they receive them. When you give someone a pen or a key chain that has your company logo on it, they will talk about it and share it with others. They will talk about your company and how much they like your company. This is great for building brand recognition and building customer loyalty.
They Work With Media Outlets
Media outlets love promotional products because they are easy to write about and promote. Just give them the item(s) and the media outlet will write about it. It doesn’t cost anything to get media coverage with promotional products because there is no cost associated with it. The reporter or the editor can write about the item(s) without any additional cost.
Promotional products are also great for online media outlets because they are easy to write about and promote online. You can give someone a pen or a key chain that has your logo on it and then they can share that with their social media followers or they can share that with their friends in their office through email or through text messages on their phone.
Promotional Products Are Easy To Use
Promotional products are an effective and easy marketing tool to use for businesses looking to increase visibility and brand recognition. Promotional products can be customised to fit your specific needs and budget, making them a great cost-effective option for businesses of all sizes. This flexibility makes it easy to reach a wide variety of audiences and increases your visibility quickly.
Additionally, promotional products can be used as part of an integrated marketing campaign, allowing you to further expand your reach. By combining promotional products with other marketing channels, you can create a comprehensive marketing strategy that reaches a wide variety of audiences and strengthens your overall marketing efforts.
Promotional products are an effective and cost-effective way to increase visibility and brand recognition for your business. By using promotional products, you can easily customise them to fit your specific needs and budget, generate media coverage, build customer loyalty, and strengthen your overall marketing efforts.
In the UK, there are 5.5 million businesses, so it’s important to make sure that you can run your business to the best of your ability. From making efficiency savings to ensuring your operations run smoothly, as business owners, there’s plenty to think about.
If you’re wondering about ways you can help your business thrive, you should be considering investing in fintech.
To learn all about fintech and how it can help your business, read on.
What is fintech?
Fintech (or financial technology) is where finance and technology are combined to rejuvenate traditional financial processes and systems to make them more accessible. This is all done with clever software such as AI, machine learning and blockchain technology.
Why is fintech important?
As well as challenging the financial industry to keep on their toes to improve customer experience, fintech companies are excellent for businesses too. For example, by using technology to automate tasks, fintech can help you make efficiency savings and drive profit.
Fintech also makes life simple – which is a huge bonus for any business owner!
How can fintech help?
Here are just some of the ways fintech might be able to help your business:
Payment processing – As we are transitioning towards a cashless society, even small businesses need to be able to facilitate card payments. Instead of a bulky point-of-sale machine, fintech has allowed the expansion of easy-to-transport, plug-and-pay options. This is especially helpful for businesses that move around, like pop-up shops or street food vendors.
E-commerce – Fintech has allowed small businesses to set up online shops with ease. With plenty of platforms to choose from including Shopify and BigCommerce, small businesses can take payment how they wish for goods. For example, in some places, Bitcoin can be used to purchase goods so that the business doesn’t incur fees.
Accounting – Fintech has made the tracking and monitoring of cash flow a doddle thanks to plenty of expenses and invoicing apps.
Customer insights and engagements – One of the main benefits of fintech is that it provides businesses with insights into their customers. By using data to understand customer patterns, interests, wants and needs, businesses can try and find a solution to customer problems. For example, if data suggests poor customer service is an issue, businesses can address this. So, to put it bluntly, there are plenty of reasons you should be considering fintech solutions. If you’re looking at making the switch and incorporating fintech into your business model, specialist fintech law firms can help you make the transition.
Businesses of all sizes must embrace technology to survive in an increasingly competitive landscape. However, the good news is that by embracing fintech, you can not only become tech savvy but ensure you’re improving your business processes and making efficiency savings.
If you haven’t already made the switch, what’s stopping you?
Data science is the process of using scientific methods and systems to extract key information from various forms of data. Data science is one of the most sought-after fields in the United Kingdom, meaning this is a perfect time for budding data scientists to enter the industry.
To ensure the best possible start in a sector as complex and competitive as this, first, candidates must ensure they’re fully equipped with the necessary knowledge and skills – both of which can come most effectively from data science university courses. Once you’ve secured your undergraduate degree, you could consider building upon your skills by gaining a postgraduate diploma in data science.
You’ll be demonstrating a willingness to go above and beyond by choosing to further your education, which is something that should impress prospective employers. In addition, you’ll have a deeper understanding of the industry and exactly what’s necessary to produce fantastic results. In theory, this should give you an edge over other candidates applying for the same job roles.
But what job roles are out there? Here we explore the top available opportunities in the world of data science.
Of course, with a degree in data science, you could become a data scientist. In this role, you’ll be expected to collect and analyse large quantities of data with the aim of using your findings to improve business performance.
While each specific process will be dependent on the business you’re delving into, you’ll be able to draw upon the knowledge and skills accumulated during your university studies to carry out the best possible job. Technical skills you’ll need a firm grasp on include data visualisation, statistical analysis, and mathematics.
How much could I earn?
The entry salary for this job role can be anywhere between £25,000 and £30,000 per annum, which is a fantastic place to start! You can expect £40,000 to £60,000 per year once more experience has been gained, and anything upwards of £60,000 once you reach lead/chief data scientist status.
As a data engineer, your responsibilities will include designing and building systems that can effectively store, manage, and convert data sets. The work you produce should be at a standard strong enough for data scientists and analysts to interpret this data and use their findings to create or improve a business plan.
In this job role, you’ll lean heavily on your knowledge of operating systems as well as have a basic understanding of machine learning. In addition, you’ll need to be confident in your communication and critical thinking skills.
How much could I earn?
The average yearly salary for someone in this job role is around £50,000, depending on your location, experience, and sector. A data engineer on the lower end of the scale could expect at least £31,000 per year, and those at the peak of their career could achieve up to £80,000 per year.
Data analytics manager
If you’d like to go down the route of data analytics and become a data analytics manager, you’ll need strong team leadership, management, and critical thinking skills on top of your data visualisation and programming language skills.
Your job will be to coordinate your team and their tasks to carry out a successful data project. Within this, you could be responsible for researching and creating the best methods to collect data, as well as analysing important information.
How much could I earn?
In the United Kingdom, the average base pay for a data analytics manager is £58,000 per year. At the very least, you can expect £40,000 per year, and at the most, £80,000 per year. Again, this will depend on your specific circumstances, but this should give you a rough idea of what you could look forward to if you enter this career.
Machine learning scientist
To be a successful machine learning scientist, you must be certain of your capabilities in researching complex algorithms and building models to assist machine learning engineers. Similarly to a data scientist, you will need to carry out some data analytics to aid your projects, verify data quality, and pick suitable data sets.
Skills you’ll need to utilise may include data modelling and evaluation, applied mathematics, computer science fundamentals and programming. If this sounds like the right job role for you, it’s important you prioritise the development of these skills.
How much could I earn?
Based on 1,260 salaries, Talent.com found that the average yearly salary of a machine learning scientist is £57,733. At the higher end of the scale sits a figure of £80,000 per year, which you could be awarded after dedicating many years to the subject. Entry-level positions start at £42,092. That’s not a bad place to start your career in data science!
An exciting, rewarding career awaits you
If you’re willing to put in the work at the education level – first securing your undergraduate degree and then postgraduate – you should receive the best opportunities in terms of a relevant career. There’s so much demand for data scientists, which is likely to increase even further as the world moves closer to digitalisation.
Studying for a data science degree will improve your employment opportunities and create many different career paths. The hard work now will indeed pay off. We wish you the very best of luck in your studies and your future career!
Those who own and operate companies the use vehicles must decide on a reliable way to evaluate trucks, automobiles, vans, buses, and other products before buying them. Some organisations spend most of their money on a single expense category: new vehicles. Whether those new items are 18-wheelers or tiny forklifts, it’s imperative to do extensive research and price comparisons first. Not only does price play a role in the decision-making process, but so do safety and reliability. With few exceptions, the same level of due diligence is required, no matter whether the product is a fleet of small passenger cars, delivery trucks, cargo vans, or anything else. Consider the following categories to see how owners of various kinds of companies shop for what they need.
Fleet managers have to make dozens of important decisions every day to keep deliveries on time and drivers safe. That means identifying and purchasing the best makes and models for their businesses is a highly crucial job. In general, it can take many hours of exhaustive research just to narrow the choices down to a few trucks that meet the minimum requirements. Supervisors and owners are keenly aware that the process of buying new trucks has a profound impact on not only profits but also overall productivity. Performance is the central area of concern, which is the reason so many transport firms do extensive test-driving before making final purchases.
For company cars used for carrying passengers, making sales calls, or delivering small goods, owners need to consider fuel efficiency, total price, potential years of service, reliability, ongoing maintenance expenses, and more. Depending on the use and needs of the organisation, some owners will opt for EVs (electric vehicles) or PHEVs (plug-in EVs) in order to minimize fuel usage. Fuel and maintenance are the two greatest ongoing operating expenses associated with automobiles.
Small Vans & Buses
Management teams use the same decision-making processes for buying buses and small vans. However, there is a difference in the general evaluation technique because so many of these assets are leased instead of directly purchased. Leasing is most common for smaller businesses that can’t afford to make outright purchases of large numbers of buses and vans. For entities that don’t want to use leases exclusively, there are options like lease-to-buy that make it easier for organisations with limited funds to get the assets they need to earn a profit.
There’s another category of vehicles that many organisations use, namely things like forklifts, golf cart type conveyances, and e-bikes. However, depending on the kind of company, the expense for these miscellaneous kinds of moving devices can be quite substantial. How do owners decide how to purchase the most reliable and fairly-priced items in this category? When it comes to forklifts and other units used on a typical factory floor, it makes good sense to take advantage of trials. Many manufacturers of lifts, carts, and other assorted small vehicles allow commercial buyers up to a full month to try out the units. Alternatively, some businesses prefer to lease all their in-house forklifts and electric carts.
United Kingdom, 2022 – Acquisition International is proud to announce the winners of the M&A Awards.
As the sixth M&A Awards programme unfolds, we would like to take a moment to reflect upon the achievements of the year gone by. We can appreciate how far we’ve all come and, for the future ahead, we can count on this experience to guide our way through any new challenge.
This year has been brimming with developments and growth for businesses within the sectors of technology, healthcare, advanced manufacturing, and more. Here we take a closer look at a plethora of companies harnessing their skills, responding to trends, and utilising teams bursting with invigorating passion.
After a difficult period of time, it is astonishing how far these businesses have managed to develop even in the face of adversity. Now it’s time for them to bask in their glory!
Our Awards Coordinator, Holly Blackwood, commented on the magnificent success of the winners in this supplement: “I am very pleased to announce the winners of this awards programme. They have done an outstanding job this year and we look forward to seeing where their success takes them in the future.”
SME News draws on our UK wide network of industry insiders to provide you with the latest news, cutting edge features and latest deals from across the UK SME landscape.
Alongside our quarterly publication we also offer an easy-to-use website, newsletter, and a series of awards programmes, making SME News much more than just a magazine, but instead a vital resource.
Bought to you by AI Global Media, the international provider of corporate news and information, this unique magazine is the perfect resource for the CEOs, leaders and decision makers in the UK based SMEs looking to keep their finger on the pulse and stay ahead of the competition.
About AI Global Media
Since 2010 AI Global Media (https://www.aiglobalmedialtd.com/) has been committed to creating engaging B2B content that informs our readers and allows them to market their business to a global audience. We create content for and about firms across a range of industries.
Today, we have 14 unique brands, each of which serves a specific industry or region. Each brand covers the latest news in its sector and publishes a digital magazine and newsletter which is read by a global audience. Our flagship brand, Acquisition International, distributes a monthly digital magazine to a global circulation of 108,000, who are treated to a range of features and news pieces on the latest developments in the global corporate market.
Most business owners want to ensure that their products resonate with their local consumers before expanding globally. If your product or service has become a success and you know there is a market outside Canada, going global is a good idea.
While expanding your business to reach a global market is great and every business person’s dream, it comes with challenges, such as product imitation, which could negatively impact your brand’s reputation. The good news is that you can solve this problem if you invest in trademarks.
But What Are Trademarks?
Trademarks are part of intellectual property rights that consist of recognisable brand names, logos, slogans, symbols, and sometimes even sounds. Their main purpose is to distinguish one company’s products from its competition.
If you are consistent with quality, your customers will associate your trademarks with quality, which can positively impact your brand’s reputation. A positive brand reputation can attract unscrupulous business people who may want to capitalise on your success to sell their products using your trademarks.
Besides eating into your profits, such business people can significantly damage your brand’s reputation since they may not be as careful about quality. If your customers buy such products believing they are genuine only to get disappointed, your brand’s reputation takes a hit.
Registering Your Trademarks
There is no way of guaranteeing that other businesses will not use your trademarks to sell their products. But you stand a better chance of protecting your brand by registering your trademarks.
In Canada, registering your trademarks starts with conducting an extensive search on the CIPO’s database to ensure that your trademarks are unique, a requirement for registration. You may also need to search the database to ensure that no business or entity can claim your trademark registration application on a first-to-use basis.
This process can be complicated, so you may need an IP expert to help you. After establishing your trademark is unique, the next step will be applying for registration on CIPO’s website.
You could also visit their office in person for registration, but online registration is much simpler. Trademarks registration will result in some costs. Applicable fees for trademarks include official fees, professional fees, and taxes which may vary depending on industry and the products on which you intend to use your trademarks.
Is it Worth Investing in Trademarks?
In Canada, you can expect to pay up to CAD 5,000 in trademark fees if you engage an expert. This figure may sound too high for a startup, but not if you consider its benefits.
The most significant benefit of registering your trademark is getting an exclusive right to use it. Having exclusive rights means you can stop others from using your trademarks, including suing them for damages caused by their infringement of your trademark rights.
If your market reach is significant, CAD 5,000 may not be much, considering the reputational damage and loss of revenue that an infringement on your trademarks can cause.
Global Trademark Protections
Canadian trademark protections may not offer protection in the global market. If you want to enjoy the same protections in other countries, you will also need to register your trademarks in those countries, which can be expensive.
But you can cut that cost by registering your trademarks under the Madrid Protocol administered by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO). Once registered under WIPO, your trademarks enjoy protection in countries that are party to the Madrid Protocol.
The cost of registering your trademark with WIPO will depend on various factors. These include the type of trademark, the number of goods or services you wish to market with the trademark, and handling fees applied by the office of origin, such as CIPO, if you are filing from Canada.
Like registering trademarks in your country, international trademark registrations give you exclusive rights to your trademarks, which is 100% worth it.
In the midst of the plethora of challenges facing us all, those who are fortunate to have something to spare may be seeking ways to support causes close to their hearts this Christmas, the peak time for charitable giving. But with so many worthy causes, how do you go about gifting in the most effective way?
Philanthropy is a longer-term, more strategic approach to giving, aimed at addressing the underlying causes of problems facing our communities and wider society. It focuses on effective giving and maximising the impact of donations to ensure they are making a real difference for the organisations, as well as fulfilling the wishes of those giving the gifts.
Here, Andrew Evans, Philanthropy Adviser at Equilibrium Financial Planning shares his top tips for getting started with philanthropy and gifting well.
1. Identify the causes that matter most to you
With more than 170,000 registered charities in the UK and Wales alone, it’s not possible to support every cause. These charities do amazing work, which means that giving begins with identifying the causes that matter most to you and the organisations in which you feel your money is likely to have the greatest impact.
If you’re unsure of how to narrow down your areas of interest, think about what you want to achieve through giving and identify your objectives. You could also consider working with a philanthropy adviser who will help you to identify charities that align with your passions, interests and goals.
2. Do your research
Once you have compiled a list of organisations or causes that you’d like to support, take some time to do your research. This should include elements such as ensuring the organisation has a Charity Registration number. If it does you can visit the Charity Commission’s website to find out information such as who the charity’s trustees are, how muchsenior staff are paid and their published accounts.
It’s also worthwhile considering the size of the charity you want to donate to. Whilst gifting to large charities will make a difference, it’s important not to overlook smaller or newer charities that may be championing just as worthy causes. Your donation could make a much larger impact in a smaller charity with less scope for advertising budgets and fewer donors.
Similarly, you could research organisations nearby that are helping causes in your local area, enabling you to stay in regular contact and even see first-hand the difference that your money is making.
3. Consider a Donor Advised Fund
A Donor Advised Fund (DAF) is a charity that distributes funds in accordance with the wishes of those who make donations. It is simpler than setting up your own charitable foundation and allows you to plan donations over a prolonged period.
The money does not have to be donated straight away and can be invested by the DAF for capital growth or income, but it does attract relevant tax relief immediately. When you are ready to make a charitable gift from the fund, you ask the trustees of the DAF to make the donation. It is important to note that you cannot get the money back once it is placed into a DAF.
4. Know your tax benefits
Whilst the main goal of giving is to make a positive difference, it’s important to be aware of the benefits that gifting can provide to you as well. Charitable giving and philanthropy facilitate a range of tax benefits, including those related to inheritance tax.
Given the continued freeze of allowances, this is a consideration that is becoming relevant to an increasing number of households in the UK. This is because when you give money to charity your taxable income is reduced by the amount you chose to gift. For those earning between £50,000 – £60,000 or over £100,000, a charitable donation may mean your income falls below the tax threshold, meaning that valuable benefits can be retained or reinstated.
5. Go for Gift Aid
Gift Aid also has benefits for your tax bill, as well as for your chosen cause. For every £1 that you give, charities can claim 25p back from the government. If you are a higher-rate or additional-rate taxpayer, you can also claim back 20% or 25% of the donation respectively via a tax return.
FAACE the fuss-free, ethical skincare brand for all faaces is set to launch its first Seedrs crowdfunding campaign to support global expansion plans and help tackle investing inequality
It’s widely reported that female founded businesses get less funding than male, and while venture capital boomed in 2021, women-led start-ups didn’t reap the benefits. Research from the European Investment Bank revealed that female entrepreneurs secured only 1% of venture capital investment last year. This is despite the fact that women-led businesses generate more gross sales, deliver double the return on investment, and fail less often than male-led businesses.
This is why Faace, the multi award-winning skincare brand, is launching its first crowdfunding campaign via Seedrs this December.
“Crowdfunding doesn’t just help address investing inequity; it also helps even the odds for female founders. Female entrepreneurs are typically less likely than men to get investment for their ventures, however female-led campaigns on crowdfunding platforms were found to be 32% more successful at reaching their funding target than male-led campaigns”, says Faace founder, Jasmine Wicks-Stephens.
“We’ve been inspired by fellow female-led brands in the ethical beauty and fem-care spaces like DAME and Upcircle who have experienced great success with overfunded crowdfunding campaigns and so we are excited to now invite everyone to share in our future successes as well, with investments starting from just £11”.
Taking Investing into Your Skincare to the Next Level
Born out of Jasmine’s need as a new mum for easy and effective beauty products, Faace set out to disrupt the £13billion UK beauty industry in 2020 with fuss-free, ethical skincare designed to look after your skin, when you don’t have the time or energy to do so.
In just two and half years, Jasmine’s passion project is now an award-winning (Elle, Marie Claire, Telegraph + more), results-driven skincare brand with thousands of customers around the globe. Available in 23 countries and 59 retailers from Harrods to LookFantastic, the brand has received prominent industry features from press and influencers with reach into the millions, gained a strong social and CRM community, and earned an excellent Trustpilot rating.
As a female focused brand, Jasmine is also dedicated to opening up the conversation and destigmatising topics like menopause and period, whilst supporting organisations in these sectors addressing period poverty and menopause (Hey Girls and The Menopause Charity).
To date, Faace has been largely self-funded, with investment from angel investors and a £150,000 investment awarded from the SFC Capital x The Red Tree beauty accelerator as part of a year-long collaborative partnership to help accelerate growth.
Jasmine and the team are now looking to raise upwards of £150K via crowdfunding platform Seedrs. “We’re really excited to offer shares in our business and build a larger team of cheerleaders who can support our growth and potentially benefit from it in the future”, says Jasmine. And with the next year set to be their most exciting year yet with four new products in the pipeline as well as launching into new countries and retail spaces like Selfridges and Zalando it’s an incredibly exciting time to join Faace.
If you’re thinking of creating your own start-up, these are Jasmine’s top tips on how female founders can fund their business:
Confidence is key
When pitching for investment female founders have been found to be notoriously more conservative in their revenue forecast than men, which can result in a “thanks but no thanks” from potential investors. It’s really important to be confident in yourself and your business, and while you don’t want to swing the other way and over promise on sales projections, don’t underestimate your trajectory either.
Shout about your business
Don’t be shy about your accomplishments and don’t look at shouting about your business as bragging or sharing goals as ‘desperate’ – it’s not. You’d be surprised by how many opportunities can come your way just by sharing with your network what you’re up to. LinkedIn is a really useful (and often underutilised) platform when it comes to sharing about your business – namely because you’re getting the right eyes on your posts, i.e., people in your industry who can help the growth of your business.
Network with other founders
Build a network of founders and consider them your teammates rather than rivals – even those you’re in direct competition with. Share your experiences and help people out when you can – you’ll discover that as founders you go through similar challenges, and it can be invaluable to get advice and support from one another – remember there is room for everyone!
Be strategic with your fundraising
You need to have a really good handle on your financials when it’s time to look for investors. You don’t want to start desperately pitching for funding because you’ve run out of money, it doesn’t help your cause one bit as investors will want to know you can manage your finances. Be strategic and keep assessing where you are, and where you want to be, so that when you present your figures to potential investors, they can see you’re following a well thought out expansion strategy.
Be opened minded about where investment will come from
It’s really easy to underestimate how much a product or business launch will cost. So, while you might have some money saved, it’s worth looking into other ways to help get your business up and running. Check out The Angel Investment Network, crowdfunding platforms like Seedrs, and investigate any accelerator programmes with monetary prizes attached.
Did you know you can leave part (or all) of your death benefit from a life insurance policy as a donation to a charity or nonprofit organisation? Permanent life insurance policies, such as whole life insurance and universal life insurance, with their guaranteed death benefit, are perfect candidates for charitable giving.
Leaving a gift to charity can be a great way to continue supporting a cause even after you’re gone. If you’re thinking of leaving part of your death benefit to an organisation, here are some aspects to consider:
Which organisation to donate to
The first step is to choose which charity or organization you want to donate to. Is there an organisation you’ve been contributing to or working with throughout your life? Maybe you’ve been fostering for a particular animal shelter for years. Is there a cause that’s particularly important to you? Perhaps you survived a particular type of cancer and want to ensure other people have access to the same level of care as you did.
How much to leave
Once you know which organisation you want to donate to the next step is to decide how much you want to leave. When designating beneficiaries, you can choose what percentage of the total death benefit to leave them. You may want to consider your other financial obligations when making this decision. For example, if your children are still dependents, you may want to leave a larger portion of the death benefit to your spouse. You may choose to change how much you leave to charity later, after your kids are out of the house and living independently and you have fewer financial responsibilities.
Leaving a gift to more than one organization
You can choose to leave gifts to multiple charities or organisations the same way you can leave your death benefit to more than one person. This can be a great option if multiple organisations have been important to you.
If you choose to leave part of your death benefit to multiple organizations, you’ll want to consider how much to leave to each one. You may leave a larger gift to an organization you’ve been more involved with or choose to give more to a bigger organization that requires more funding in general. Or, you may simply decide to divide the amount evenly.
Letting your other beneficiaries know
If you choose to leave part of your death benefit to a charity or organisation, you may want to let your other beneficiaries know. Letting them know now can help them understand your wishes and may help avoid any confusion in the future.
Research shows that increasing the retention rate, even by 5%, can lead to an increase in profit by up to 95%. Similarly, businesses are also 60-70% likely to sell the product or service to an existing customer.
This shows that companies must focus on customer acquisition and customer retention to ensure growth and profit. To understand how to build a customer acquisition plan and retain potential buyers, firms must understand the following principles:
Research the Audience
Identify the Target Market
Identifying a target market and understanding its needs are essential to customer acquisition and customer retention. Companies need to determine what type of clients they want to acquire, how they can reach them, and what services or products they should offer tailored to the target audiences.
Understand their Requirements
Once a target market has been identified, companies can understand their requirements. For example, a business may need to research its target market’s buying habits, preferences, and demographics to determine what product or service it should offer. Companies can also use surveys and other feedback forms to gain insight into their target purchasers’ needs.
Tailor Business Offerings
Moreover, businesses can further create customer acquisition marketing strategies that are tailored to the audience’s preferences. This will help them acquire new consumers more effectively by targeting individuals most likely to be interested in their products or services. It will also help them retain existing clients by offering a product or service that exclusively meets the market’s demand. For instance, identity marketing can be beneficial for businesses to identify their target audience and develop a plan tailored to their needs.
Use Reward Programs
Reward programs are an effective way of encouraging buyers to stay loyal to a business. They can help with acquisition and retention by offering incentives to join and stay with a company.
For instance, a loyalty program might offer discounts after reaching a certain number of purchases or give points that can be redeemed for rewards. This encourages people to keep returning and making more purchases from the brand. It also enables potential buyers who may need to become more familiar with the business to try out the services. For acquisition, sign-up rewards are ideal.
Provide a Personalised Customer Experience
Personalised experiences create a better first impression and make people feel valued. Individuals are more likely to continue engaging with brands that show they care about their individual needs and preferences. Furthermore, it leads to higher satisfaction levels, increasing the likelihood of repeated business opportunities from existing customers and referrals from satisfied customers.
Additionally, it saves time and resources by reducing the effort needed for marketing and sales activities such as lead generation, onboarding, and support, making it easier to reach a larger audience.
From an analytical perspective, personalisation helps identify the consumers that should be prioritized for product or service upgrades and other opportunities to increase their lifetime value. Additionally, it helps businesses better understand their buyers’ interests and needs, so they can make more informed decisions about how to engage with them in the future.
Offer Excellent Customer Support
A good customer service experience helps to create a positive brand image that can attract new clientele and ensure existing ones remain loyal. This approach can help businesses build trust with their buyers by providing helpful advice, resolving queries quickly, and offering personalised solutions. It also helps in building a lasting relationship between the company and its customers.
Consumers who know they will be supported if they have problems or need assistance are more likely to stay with the company for extended periods. Besides, potential customers tend to trust companies that respond to both positive and negative reviews. This is especially true for businesses in highly competitive industries, as buyers tend to look for companies that show a commitment to customer service.
By understanding and applying the basic principles, businesses can create a customer acquisition strategy that will bring in new business and maintain existing customers. Firms must remember that every business is different and will require its unique approach, but if they keep these general tips in mind, they’re well on their way to success.
As interest rates are hiked by ratios not seen in decades, the fallout from slowing economies across the world is likely to hit middle income earners as much, or more, as those on lower incomes. While those at the poorest ends of society are well-versed in being able to make a little go a long way, those on middle incomes have less experience here.
In the UK, only the richest 10% of households are expected to add to their savings in the next 12 months. The group taking the biggest hit will be middle income earners. Currently 58% of this group have at least three months’ worth of essential expenses in savings, but within a year that is likely to fall to 48%. The middle class is existing on a knife edge.
This is a group that has done all the right things in their careers, but they have either been unable or unwilling to compromise on the lifestyles they work hard to maintain to build up savings. A mortgage hike, utilities increase, an extra £50 a week on groceries will all add up. For businesses that rely on monthly payments, there may well be plenty of perfectly ‘successful’ people who suddenly find that they owe debts that they cannot immediately pay.
Businesses need to prepare for a new type of debtor, which need to be treated in the right way. The old way of thinking – that those who end up in hard times are somehow morally or spiritually bereft – is dead. Covid, war in Europe, impending recession, these are not the faults of individuals and so debt collection operations that operate punitively will find themselves acutely out of touch with what people expect.
69% of people who are in debt don’t talk about it with anyone. The main reason why people avoid this is because they feel ‘embarrassed’. Just under half of people who don’t want to discuss debt say that they do not want to ‘burden’ anyone else, while 39% said it is because they did not want people to think badly of them.
When we talk about AI communications, we often talk about the need for machines to do the legwork, processing the data and asking the simple questions, so that a human can come in over the top and provide the emotions that customers really value. While this works well in cases of grief or in service where the customer needs to feel valued, there are reasons to believe that in intimate issues where there may be feelings of guilt or shame, this may be turned on its head.
Whether they mean to or not, humans can give off subtle tones of judgment in their speech and their own experiences can make them prejudiced. By contrast, a machine can be consistent, fair, and logical – qualities that are essential when discussing financial solutions. They do not get bored; they do not get distracted. Machines can have the difficult conversations humans can’t.
How AI can give debtors a personalised experience
A machine can only be an effective communicator with affluent debtors if they communicate in the ways they expect. This is a demographic that is busy – busy with working late and starting early, busy with commuting, busy with mid-week socialising, weekend brunching and morning exercise. Long, continuous forms of communication, such as phone calls, are out. Similarly, letters – long serious prose that demands attention in the evening after a hectic day – are also not suitable. You need to reach this demographic in bitesize chunks, such as with instant message over text and WhatsApp.
You also need to speak to them in the way they will expect. For most people who find themselves in this unfortunate situation, they will genuinely want to pay the money back. They won’t see themselves as ‘criminal’ and will switch off entirely if they are chastised or threatened, resulting in a much more expensive process for you. The tone needs to be one of understanding and reassurance. It needs to be serious, without being downbeat.
Fortunately, machine learning algorithms have become finally tuned over years of millions of conversations with people, reflecting a user’s language, resulting in a natural, warm, and engaging dialogue.
What the benefits are for debt collection
Sending debt collectors round and taking cases to court comes with a cost. This cost can be more than the debt itself, making it a more astute business decision to drop the case altogether than to go through the process. That all changes if you can put those with high earnings – or high-earning potential when they find employment again – onto a sensible plan with automated, tailored AI communication.
If done well, the way you handle debt collection can not only recover what you are owed, it could also work as something of a customer sales tool – keeping that customer with you as their finances restabilise.
Your company needs to treat its new wave of debtors as the valued customers they were and as they will see themselves as capable of being again. Harnessing AI to have millions of light-touch, automated conversations, is certainly a step in the right direction.
For business owners, the ways in which you can promote your company have changed dramatically over the last decade. The majority of marketing now takes place online, particularly since the start of the pandemic.
It’s imperative that you understand how to advertise your business online amidst competition from big names out there and garner the attention of new customers. Executing an advertising strategy can be an expensive ordeal depending on what you plan to achieve, therefore you may wish to consider a quick business loan to help get you started on your marketing journey.
When implemented correctly, you can increase sales, develop your business and expand into new markets. But first, let’s take a look at some of the different options for how you can effectively advertise your business online.
Public Relations (PR)
PR is simply about getting your business in publications and other online sites – this might be if your business has recently won an award or launched a new service that you want people to be aware of.
It’s important that PR targets the relevant audience and your niche; for example, if you run a business development company, it’s ideal to focus on being seen in business magazines or select trade publications.
Google is a hub for advertisements and can often seem to be providing you with helpful information. It is actually doing so in the hopes that you see these advertisements, which is where the majority of Google’s revenue originates from.
PPC is an online advertising model where your business pays a publisher each time one of your advertisement links is clicked on – essentially, you’re paying for targeted visits to your site. You can even bid for ad placements on search engines, meaning someone is presented with your site should they search for keywords relevant to your offerings.
What is useful about this method is that you only pay for what consumers click on, providing you with a low-cost strategy and an efficient way to attract new customers.
You must first decide on what you plan to achieve and whether you want to generate traffic to your website or increase product sales. Figuring out your target audience is also useful to understand what social media platform to target.
Posting regular updates about your brand and products will help to keep your followers and customers up to date with your services. Your followers may even share the content with their followers or leave comments, which is free marketing in itself.
When forming a business, the number of pivotal decisions you need to make is eye-watering. And yet if you choose correctly at this stage, it’ll be a much smoother ride to success.
Picking a structure for your fledgling company is particularly important, with the main sticking point being whether you form an LLC or an S-Corp.
If you’re new to these concepts and you don’t know which is right, read on as we dismantle and demystify each in turn.
Limited liability companies are legal entities created by entrepreneurs who want to build businesses without leaving their personal assets hanging in the balance.
For instance, with an LLC you won’t be beholden to any debts that the organization accrues. You’ll also be able to report income and losses made by an LLC as part of your tax return, rather than having to file separately for the business.
LLCs can be owned by an individual, or by a partnership of several people, in which case the aforementioned pass-through taxation process would still apply.
How to form an LLC, e.g. in Florida
There are a few things you need to do to form an LLC in Florida, and you can either choose to handle this yourself or make use of an LLC formation service to take care of all the complex admin instead.
Every newly launched business needs a name, a registered agent, articles of organization, an operating agreement, and an employer identification number.
From a liability perspective, S-corporations are identical to LLCs, which gives founders a means of innovating without taking too many risks with their personal financial situation.
When it comes to taxation, S-corps make their income and losses taxable through the people who own shares in the organization. IRS rules on what qualifies as an S-corp are stringent, and the main requisite is that a maximum of 100 shareholders are allowable.
Another important factor for those who want to turn their business into an S-corp is that it has to be registered as an LLC or a C-corp beforehand.
In fact, a business can be both an LLC and an S-corp simultaneously, because these are not mutually exclusive states.
Which one is right for you?
Speaking generally, LLCs are subject to fewer rules and restrictions regarding things like ownership structures and operational requirements than full-blown corporations, whether of the S or C variety.
For example, there’s no cap on how many owners can hold a slice of an LLC, while the 100 shareholder cap on an S-corp is just the start of the obligations and standards to which this type of business must adhere.
Having things like a board of directors, and scheduling shareholder meetings, as well as issuing stock and creating corporate bylaws, will all be a necessity if you go the S-corp route.
For entrepreneurs who are just getting started with a new business project, setting up an LLC is the obvious choice. If it makes sense to move it to an S-corp further down the line in order to optimize your taxation situation, then that’s perfectly possible without needing to also incur any additional liabilities as an individual.
What about growth?
The growth of a business is not just contingent on its structure, and you don’t need to get too bogged down in deciding between LLC and S-corp status early on.
When you eventually do get to the stage that your company is enjoying sustained growth, getting experts in taxation and legal matters involved to advise on and oversee any structural transition is wise.
The customer journey is one which can have a transformative effect on a business’s success, with new technologies opening the door to exciting opportunities. The team at Hevolus are leading the way to a bold future in this regard. Recognised in Acquisition International’s Global Excellence Awards as Most Innovative Classroom Education Technology Provider 2022, we thought this the ideal time to dig a little deeper to uncover some of the secrets of the team’s success.
Customer experience makes up an enormous part of the purchasing process. No matter how good the product is, the experience is what most people take away from buying. As such, it pays not only to invest in the customer journey, but to continually be looking at how to improve it.
Based in Italy, the team at Hevolus are ideally equipped to assist businesses of all shapes and sizes to do precisely that. Their focus on a hybrid customer experience, which combines the physical world and the digital work into what they call phygical. This has been achieved through the use of webXR, which has allowed the team to help companies around the world to transform the way in which their business models and process work. The aim is always to provide an engaging and emotional experience, tailored to the specific requirements of the organisation.
Since opening their doors, Hevolus has stood apart from the crowd thanks to constant investment in &D. The team are leaders when it comes to the world of technologies for phygital experiences and for the metaverse, including blockchain, digital twins, NFT, virtual and augmented reality, Artificial Intelligence, IoT and cloud computing. These innovative ways of working have been at the core of the methods used by the Hevolus team to transform the user experience and business strategies of businesses in a host of different sectors.
The strategies that are offered to clients include the study of the customer journey, the R&D of IT platforms, and operational tests, meaning they are “ready to go” without the need for massive development. That the team have been able to achieve such success whilst retaining their innovative streak is a testament to their hard work and commitment to the intentions that have made the company since its inception.
Many impressive brand names have turned to Hevolus to support them in the development of new ideas and concepts, including Ferroli, Würth, Natuzzi, the National Chamber of Italian Fashion, Ferragamo and Vodafone Business to name but a few. This truly international selection of the team’s clients has turned to Hevolus primarily because of the firm’s renowned customisation which allows them to develop bespoke solutions as well as the completeness and scalability of their ecosystems. No matter what industry the team work in, they are able to adapt to suit their needs with ease.
Building a business of innovative thought has not been an easy task, and the Hevolus team have has to ensure such bold ambition is woven into the very fabric of how they work. Innovation is the core of every decision made by the team. An area where the team focus especially is that of human resources. Hevolus thrives through the careful interception and nurturing of young talents. With well-defined processes and work plans available, the Hevolus team have built a solid internal organisation, where senior resources can help to train the talents of the next generation.
Like many organisations, Hevolus was impacted heavily by the COVID-19 pandemic. Having made the active decision to follow market behavioural trends and help customers sell better by involving the consumer more, they were fully ready for the crisis precipitated by the pandemic. The team had already designed and implemented augmented and mixed reality stores for Natuzzi in pre-Covid times, and could apply what they had learned to a host of new businesses in short order. The pandemic acted as a massive accelerator on progress. Hevolus was required to react swiftly to support their clients across a range of different industries and sectors.
The solutions that the team have always championed, namely hybrid working and ways forward such as Cloud Computing, AI and Mixed Reality technologies were immensely popular. They could guarantee shared, collaborative and highly engaging experiences, even from a distance.
For many businesses, turning to Hevolus proved to be the turning point at which they could revitalise their success. Some companies would stop developing and growing at this point, with demand for their services at an all-time high. This certainly wasn’t true for Hevolus. In 2022, the team were among the early adopters worldwide of the Qualcomm Snapdragon Spaces platform for the creation of metaversic 3D environments.
The potential of digital technology is one which every business can see the potential of, but few truly understand. When it comes to creating a world which is more sustainable and inclusive, the Hevolus team see new technological innovations as playing a crucial role in addressing wider societal challenges and helping to contain the impact that large-scale industrial change is generating. Digital transformation, focused on technologies including augmented and virtual reality, additive manufacturing, digital twins, artificial intelligence, internet of things and blockchain, can offer an evident contribution to properly implement all 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda.
Implemented correctly, technology can help to overcome the distinction between able-bodied users and disabled users. The Hevolus team have adopted inclusive design for precisely this reason, with apps that are developed according to the criteria of the User eXperience Design. This means that output can be closer to the habits, expectations and needs of the majority of users, creating ways for people to live positive, unique and memorable experiences.
With their eyes always looking directly ahead, it’s little wonder that the team at Hevolus has managed to achieve such tremendous success. We cannot wait to see how their innovative streak serves them and their customers in the months and years to come as businesses continue to embrace the immense power that technology can bring.
iatrixAir is a healthtech start-up that provides mission critical products and services using sensor fusion and machine learning that detects and destroys airborne pathogens and biothreats in near real-time for commercial and public buildings. It’s a huge opportunity and a huge problem to solve. But this company has nailed it – making it deserving of being named Best AI-Based Air Quality Control Solutions Developer – North America.
Like the water we drink, we shouldn’t have to concern ourselves with the quality of our indoor air. iatrixAir’s technology makes the indoor air quality of commercial and public buildings safe and healthy, so it is clear of airborne pathogens and biothreats, in near real-time. This comes in the form of smart, efficient, medical grade filtration and air exchange products that monitor air quality 24/7/365. iatrixAir’s “Air Quality as a Service” business model delivers absolute performance with a low-cost monthly fee, and white-glove, never-touch installation by professional contractors.
The company builds relationships with independent representative firms that recruit and train building contractors to install its products and deliver its services to building owners and operators. The key difference from competitors is that its approach is mission-critical and near real-time, with fast detection using sensors that run every ten seconds; machine learning which uses a predictive and automated approach; fast-first pass disinfection using only proven enclosed, intense UVC light; and real-time visual information via mobile and desktop apps or digital signage. Thanks to iatrixAir, a building operator or owner can now rest assured that their buildings are providing safe, healthy air to employees and visitors.
iatrixAir is on a mission to salvage the air quality industry from being full of misinformation and pseudoscience, and industry standards are also ineffective to stop airborne pathogens such as COVID-19. The rate of ventilation of air in a space should be double the current standards. It’s not so much a technology challenge but rather an education-marketing challenge backed up by improved test methods and standards.
COVID-19 cost the US economy upwards of $200b in 2021 and some reports estimate that the total costs could be up to $16T. What didn’t help in this was that at first, the experts and scientists could not agree on the mechanism of COVID-19, however they now all agree that these airborne pathogens go further and linger in the air for longer than previously thought. It took over a year for the WHO and CDC to provide guidance on the real root cause of COVID-19. Now the root cause is known, iatrixAir is speeding to the market a mission-critical solution of fast detection, fast remediation, and fast information.
The US White House has released the Indoor Air Quality Building Challenge in which a pledge is provided along with steps that a business can take in order to improve their indoor air quality, plus realise tax credits for installing indoor air quality solutions. The spotlight is on indoor air quality. A recent comment by an industry observer indicated that perhaps the building operator or owner has a bigger impact on your health than your doctor! We now spend over 90% of our time indoors so safe and healthy air is very important.
Indeed, iatrixAir continues to see an enormous opportunity with many companies needing better air quality solutions, whether workplaces, schools, shopping malls, or restaurants. Indoor air quality should not be something we have to think about. The key is understanding the air quality in the space and its air flows. iatrixAir will over the coming years have huge amounts of data in the cloud that it can use to make its products more effective and efficient using the latest AI machine learning.
Now, it is working on creating discreet products which can’t be seen or heard but still keep the air quality safe and healthy. The company is filling its patents on this approach and has licensed other patents to place these products on the market in the new two to three years.
Because UVC is a very proven science. And iatrixAir is showing the industry how it’s done. And just in time as RSV, the annual flu and a resurgence of CV-19 is occurring or what is called the tri-pandemic. The spread of airborne pathogens can be reduced with existing technology re-purposed, combined with new technologies such as machine learning.
For businesses looking to elevate themselves in any area, they must completely understand their clients’ demands as well as how to meet them. Consulting businesses must find their feet in this extremely competitive industry and Hahnelt Consulting has done just that – and beyond. Here we learn more from CFO, Michael Hahnelt, as it wins the prestigious award of Leading Private Equity Post-Merger Consultancy of the Year 2022 – Germany.
Michael Hahnelt founded Hahnelt Consulting and, as CFO in the board and management position, he brings 34 years of international operational experience – and 20 of which are from the process-oriented automotive supply industry.
Today, thanks to his leadership, Hahnelt Consulting stands for qualified management consulting and interim management – from concept development to implementation. Driven by ensuring efficient commercial structures, the firm strengthens the competitiveness of its SME clients sustainably – from the short-term individual measures increasing efficiency through the long-term interim projects, e.g., the assumption of a mandate as managing director or CFO.
After all, in the current business market, recognizing and implementing optimization approaches is one of the key competencies for increasing the value and competitiveness of medium-sized companies.
To develop a company’s success that is clearly recognizable in just a few months, the practice-oriented view of numbers, facts and strategies is of key importance: the targeted, rapid realization of all necessary measures.
With its expertise in finance, business processes, and knowledge gained from around 35 years of international work experience, at top-level addresses in small and medium-sized manufacturing, Hahnelt Consulting works alongside their clients to realize their goals.
Together, the teamwork towards success for their clients, which in turn leads to success for Hahnelt Consulting. Due to this high production affinity, Hahnelt Consulting is remarkably familiar with the success factors of production companies. Many years of best practice experience guarantee that its clients enjoy the benefit of the firm’s eye for the essentials of their corporate affairs.
The firm’s projects differ in their scope of securing commercial functions and CFO services in post-merger activities, at PE portfolio companies, increasing efficiency and operational realignment. The transitions are often fluid and change during the project. Implementation takes place through interim management. Hahnelt Consulting’s focus on excellence drives the team to success.
Specialist and management functions as a member of the board and shareholders, as well as awards as CFO Award for Excellence stand for international professionalism in finance, accounting, controlling, materials management, IT, supply chain, and production planning.
As a consultant and implementer, Hahnelt Consulting is a business partner of private equity companies but also of independent SME companies. The firm’s vast team of interim managers is the perfect interface between the SMEs and the private equity world.
Interim managers may be involved in all phases of a business cycle, such as business start-up, growth phase, stabilization, stagnation and working in a crisis and on its potential impact.
In almost all these entrepreneurial phases, reorganizations, restructurings, realignments, mergers, splits, changes of shareholders, purchases, and sales or partial sales of companies lays a result. Due to their mostly international activities, interim managers speak several languages and are familiar with diverse cultures, which makes them so attractive to many companies.
That is why the private equity firm often uses the right specialist for the company and its situation: reorganizer, M & A or post-merger integration (PMI) expert and generalist. The prerequisite for a successful implementation of the task in cooperation with the company, the PEG, its management team and the interim manager is a detailed analysis of the current company situation. This is an essential aspect of the “positive chemistry” between the participants.
Using interim managers in these situations can support the participants in their projects and be a major success factor. Once the appropriate decision-makers have experienced a successful interim assignment, other tasks are often assigned to the interim manager in addition. The enormous treasure of experience of a carefully designed interim manager from Hahnelt Consulting can cover all management tasks of an organization and master challenges.
Overall, Hahnelt Consulting manages projects in various branches of industry and penetrates deeply into every task, and this will remain the firm’s focus as it looks towards a bright and exciting future.
For business enquiries, contact Hahnelt Consulting on their website – www.hahnelt.com
Vertical market software is particularly niche, and it should be tailored to each business – as well as across every industry. From practice management to field service business software, property management to gym/fitness facility software, and non-profit/charity software or other verticals, Payrix has solutions that we can’t refuse. Here we explore its values and aims as it wins the exciting accolade of Best Mobile Commerce Solutions Provider – Southeast USA.
A great example of vertical market software is a point of sale (POS) system which is a combination of hardware and software that allows merchants to receive payments from customers, instantaneously – the communication between banks and payment processors is made possible by POS hardware and software.
There are many benefits to POS systems such as increased sales, better cash flow management, lower chances of theft, and customer convenience. When a customer buys things, they want the payment to go through instantly so that they may receive their goods right away.
Cash flow management is improved for businesses through POS systems because the money is usually transferred to the bank at the end of the working day. Alongside this, these electronic payments are easy to account for and resolve. As a bonus, since the reconciliation process can be automated, costs for businesses can be lowered.
Customer convenience plays a huge part in the benefits of POS systems as they wish to carry less cash. Also, by offering great POS systems, businesses can actually make more money as customers impulsively buy more. The ROI of the company then skyrockets as a result of this.
Also, a plethora of businesses are more likely to suffer theft and, therefore, it is great for them to be able to reduce the presence of cash on the premises. In the same vein, companies can save a substantial amount of money from security services by using POS systems, as there is less cash around. Also, when money is transferred electronically, we can guarantee less spread of viruses such as Covid-19 that has rippled throughout the world.
Introducing Payrix, we take a moment to look at how it is changing the world of mobile commerce solutions for intricate and innovative POS software. As a dedicated and intelligent team of payments and software experts, Payrix offers vertical software companies with a full-service platform where they can grow their business for the long run. This passion for easy payments to transmogrify a business puts Payrix in good stead, increases its success, and nurtures its network of business cooperation.
Payrix is on a mission to be the preeminent provider of embedded payment solutions for software businesses who want to monetize their platforms and eliminate friction. It’s why we combine expertise, quality and innovation with a flexible, all-in-one platform to empower our clients to focus on growth and pursuing their passion.
With strong ethics and values, Payrix lives by its desire to support its customers in a sustainable and fair way. With its product roadmap and customer experience entwined, Payrix “can unleash our possibilities”. Guaranteeing a streamlined service, and relationships that are nurtured from the beginning, Payrix has a surplus of customer and hiring experience that has allowed it to flourish.
Its values are integrity and accountability, client experience, innovation, continuous improvement, and teamwork – all of which have boosted it forward in the competitive industry. Staying true to its word and by being committed to its customers, Payrix is clear, honest, and understanding. In this way, Payrix is flourishing from all of the connections it has made – and kept – over its time.
Building solid relationships with its clients is the number one priority for such a provider. Always searching for ways to perfect and innovate its products, it empowers its customers and constructs a relationship that will stand the test of time. Not only this, but Payrix is devoted to sustaining the relationships within its team. Working side by side, the entire team have compassion for one another – and the end results truly show it.
Payrix ensures green to fuel growth, property management software, higher growth and returns, simplified processes, and much more. For example, field service business software can hugely benefit from Payrix’s solutions. Due to the fact that Payrix has the perfect set up to allow quick payments with simple billing and fee models, and better maintenance, a field service business can get paid via web, mobile, or ACH.
As a new vertical software platform supporting a plethora of industries and services, Payrix promises – and delivers – the best user experience possible. This is due to the launch of its product with an embedded payment solution that is compatible with all different payment types. Payrix knows that it is not a “one-size-fits-all” solution – which is exactly why it tailors its services to fit each business, never-mind each varying industry.
Dealing with underwriting, risk, and liability processes, Payrix analyses data so that its customers can have peace of mind and the smoothest experience. Manually and automatically collecting data is no small feat, however, Payrix has solutions that make it all swift and successful every time. This analysis contributed towards risk management of any business, and allows for breathing space when it comes to compliance regulations.
Charities can also hugely benefit from Payrix’s aid as it helps registered payment facilitators to switch over to a single platform for all of their payments needs. By doing so, each charity can severely reduce the costs of multiple software tools and vendors whilst keeping the same user experience throughout every service.
For the future, Payrix is going to become a giant in its industry, spreading around the world at a quick and unstoppable rate. It is already well on its way to this. The possibilities are endless with Payrix as it continues to invent easier and more effective solutions, and this is exactly why Payrix has won Best Mobile Commerce Solutions Provider – Southeast USA. We look forward to seeing what it does next.
The protection and maintenance of a business’ intellectual property (IP) is often overlooked and misunderstood by business owners. The IP of a business is a valuable asset, and in the correct circumstances can be utilised to help generate additional income with relatively minimal effort through licensing.
Pete Konieczko-Hansom, Head of Intellectual Property at Blacks Solicitors, shares an overview of matters that business owners should consider when it comes to protecting their IP.
What are intellectual property rights
Intellectual property is something that is created using the mind – for example, a story, an invention, an artistic work or a symbol. This typically gives the creator exclusive rights over the use of the creation for a certain period of time. Copyrights, patents, designs and trademarks are all types of IP protection and these can be used to protect the unique creation of names of products and brands, inventions, the design or appearance of a product and things written or produced.
Protecting a brand name
It’s important for a brand name or logo to be protected by seeking to register it as a trademark. A trademark is a sign, design, logo or expression that is capable of identifying a product or service from a particular enterprise2.
Once a brand name is trademarked it will be easier for businesses or individuals to stop others from copying their brand. This can be seen with licensed sporting goods, for example, if a product bears a football team’s logo the customer will know that they are purchasing the official merchandise of the team.
Protecting unique inventions
If a business or individual creates unique or innovative processes or ways of operating, it may be worth protecting this process with a patent. There are very strict rules and regulations in place to obtain a patent, and so businesses should seek advice from a professional sooner rather than later. Obtaining a patent presents many benefits, whether this is through passive income through licensing out the invention or restricting your competitors by forcing them to use inferior materials or products.
A patent is a type of IP that gives the owner the legal right to stop others, for a limited period, from making, using or selling the invention without their permission.
Protecting confidential information
If a business’ process or procedure isn’t capable of being patented, this can still be protected by restricting access to essential and confidential information. There may be several reasons why a business chooses not to patent its product, particularly as a patent only protects an invention for a limited time, after which anyone else may use, sell or create the patent.
The protection of information can be secured in a variety of ways, from confidentiality agreements to physically limiting the number of individuals who have access to the relevant information. An example of this is the closely guarded secret regarding the Coca-Cola recipe. Whilst it is potentially capable of being patented for a limited time, the company chose against divulging the recipe to the public and instead chose to rely on contract law. This has therefore allowed the Coca-Cola recipe to remain a secret since its invention in 1886 by simply restricting the number of individuals who have knowledge of the key ingredients.
For anyone with a well established brand name, there is always the option of expanding into new areas that they do not already operate in via licensing. This can be related to different geographic areas, or to different areas in terms of products, services and sectors. An example of this is Games Workshop which has a variety of licensed products from candles, to clothing, to an escape room.
Welcome to the December edition of Acquisition International Magazine, bringing you the latest news, features, and success stories from businesses all over the world.
As 2022 soon draws to a close, there couldn’t be a better time to celebrate the successes of our businesses who have been rebuilding and thriving after a tough few years due to the pandemic. From a healthtech start-up solving the huge problem that is airborne pathogens and biothreats, to a world-first company simplifying corporate risk profiling data management, they have truly been showing their industries how it is done – and are nearing the end of a highly successful year.
The weather might be getting colder, but these businesses are on fire as they continue to defy the odds and exceed expectations. They’re making lives easier, and some are even saving them. In this issue, we explore the ground-breaking work being done with next-level expertise and resilience in what have been some of the toughest times, where business are putting their clients above themselves and are devoted to providing only the very best service.
We hope you find this issue informative and motivational, and we look forward to seeing you again for a next edition in the new year.
According to a May 2021 Federal Reserve report, as many as 83% of Americans have at least one credit card, leaving approximately 17% that currently don’t have a line of credit. But it’s becoming more complicated to live without a credit card, given how often the average person does business with online companies, as well as local companies which are improving their online presence.
If you’re considering getting a new credit card, switching to a new credit card, or reapplying for a card after the “seven year swipe”, read on for some suggestions.
1. Choose a big, reputable credit card provider
Try to avoid smaller credit card companies if you can. By applying to some of the biggest credit card companies out there, like Chase Bank, American Express, Citibank, Capital One, Bank of America, Discover Card, U.S. Bank and Wells Fargo, you’re more likely to receive quality customer service and support.
You will also be getting a highly flexible card that can be used almost everywhere.
2. Figure out what kind of card best suits you
Ask yourself: What do I want from a credit card? For some, cash back cards are best, where you earn cash back for things like groceries and gas. But first you will have to make sure that you can get cash back from your local stores and gas stations.
If you would prefer a travel or international card and want to charge purchases abroad or redeem miles, you will have to figure out if it’s worth it for how much you travel and if these cards are accepted at the airlines you want to fly with.
3. If you’re planning on buying a house or a car soon, don’t apply for a new card
If you’re planning on making a big purchase like a car or house within the next 12 months, you should hold off on applying for a new credit card. This is because the credit card company will do a hard inquiry on your credit, which will hit your credit score and cause some damage there.
However, if you have better than fair to good credit, a credit check may knock off only a few points off your credit score. Refresh your memory on what can push a credit score down.
4. Diversify your applications in case you get turned down
There are many different uses for a new credit card, including funding a new business, or even refinancing an old debt. But don’t put all your eggs in one basket!
Just like with anything you apply for, like a job or a gig, make sure when applying for a credit card that you don’t just go with one company. After all, they might turn you down, especially if you have a large credit limit with another company.
Focus on how much you’re using off of your card every month. This is called the credit utilization ratio, and it should be kept as low as possible before you start applying.
5. Search for better introductory rates are temporary
Many favourable introductory rates are temporary. If the interest rate on a card looks low, that’s what is commonly known as a teaser rate.
It is federally required by law that credit card companies may allow a teaser rate to go on for as long as 6 months, but it can be withdrawn even earlier than that if you’re more than 60 days late on paying off your bill.
Be sure to ask up front if the rate provided is a teaser rate and what you’re really expected to pay once the grace period is over. For more on the subject, read about the rights of credit card providers and common practices.
6. Analyse all of your older accounts
True, closing your old accounts will keep you safe from identity fraud, especially if you don’t plan on checking it regularly.
However, keep in mind that closing multiple credit accounts will often lead to a dip in your credit score. Be mindful of this before closing all of your accounts that you could still use periodically for better credit.
Tips on Using Your New Card
One of the best feelings after applying for a card (at multiple locations, ideally) is being approved for a new card. But when activating your card and getting it all set up, consider setting it up to accept direct deposit with your job to make sure there are no barriers to you getting your money.
You can also set up autopay for your credit card bills so you never forget to make a payment on time. Also, if you’re transferring a balance from one of your old cards, you will usually have your provider work that out on their side so it should be in your account by the time you officially open it.
As life goes on, you might find yourself in need of more than one credit card. You may also find yourself in the market for a new credit card if your previous creditor just isn’t cutting it for what you need.
It’s always a big decision to open a new credit card account, but hopefully with these tips you’ll be able to make a sound decision that works for you and your situation.
As the volume and variety of data soar, enterprises require more advanced analytics tools. Therefore, increasingly more organizations upscale their investments in business intelligence (BI). According to Industry Research, the global BI market will reach $35,380 million by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 5.6% during 2022-2028.
Despite the growing demand for advanced analytics, not every organization is ready to initiate BI-related projects. After all, BI development is no easy task, which implies the integration of different data sources and assuring data quality.
For this reason, those who decide to initiate business intelligence projects usually fall back on BI advisory and utilize third-party expertise to mitigate the development challenges. This article discusses why the choice of a BI consultant plays a critical role in project success and provides tips on finding the best service provider.
Why is the choice of a BI consultant essential?
Typically, consultants are involved in BI projects at multiple levels. For example, a consultant first provides business and technical advice to validate a client’s idea, concurrently helping to draw up the requirements and project plan. Then the same consultant participates in BI development and implementation and is involved in coding, design, testing, and optimization.
Apparently, such a wide range of tasks requires a broad set of skills and proficiency in BI development from both business and technical perspectives. In addition, a consultant must have relevant industry expertise – after all, developing BI for logistics, telecommunications, and healthcare would slightly differ.
Suppose a consultant does not meet these requirements. In that case, an enterprise risks deploying a useless or defective BI solution and ineffective budget spending. On the contrary, choosing the right BI consultant with relevant skills and domain expertise increases the chances of project success.
How to find the best BI consultant?
To increase the chances of finding the best BI consultant, we would recommend corporate decision-makers the following algorithm:
Step 1. Preparation
If an organization considers initiating a BI project and starts looking for a consultant, we would recommend doing a little preparatory work in advance. In particular, decision-makers should elaborate on their business requirements and define the project goals, as this information may come in handy while searching for a BI consultant.
Decision-makers may initiate meetings with linear managers and enterprise IT experts to discuss relevant questions:
What pain points do we want to solve with business intelligence?
What kind of BI software do we need? What features and capabilities should it provide?
Are there examples of similar BI solutions on the market?
What technologies and tools will we use during the development?
What budget and resources are we ready to allocate?
What assistance do we require from a BI consultant? What skills and expertise do we need in the first place?
Based on the answers, decision-makers can formulate their requirements for a potential consultant. For example, an organization plans to utilize a microservices architecture. In this case, it goes to a consultant with a deep knowledge of a microservices concept.
Step 2. Researching
After an organization has determined the basic requirements for a BI consultant, it can proceed to gather a pool of candidates. At this stage, decision-makers should try to collect all relevant information about each potential consultant.
To start with, they may look at the consultants’ websites. There they can find general information about consultants, their services, domain expertise descriptions, and specific certificates.
Also, it is advisable to look through the portfolio section. First, the portfolio highlights a consultant’s expertise. Second, it helps understand whether a consultant had experience with similar BI projects. In addition, a portfolio may provide insight into how a consultant approaches BI software development.
The research stage should imply visiting directories (such as Clutch, G2C, etc.) and reading reviews of the consultant’s clients. Both good and bad reviews can provide a lot of valuable info – whether customers are generally satisfied with the services, what they say about a consultant regarding data and project management, communication, and meeting deadlines.
Among other things, decision-makers may try to reach out to the consultant’s clients directly and ask some questions about their past interactions. On completing all these steps, an organization can gain a comprehensive view of a particular BI consultant and decide if it deserves further consideration.
Step 3. Filtering
At this stage, an organization should already have a pool of candidates potentially suitable for the role of a BI consultant. Now an organization should filter out consultants to determine the most worthy ones.
For convenience, decision-makers may create a table in Excel or Google Spreadsheets and fill it with the research results. This way, they can compare all the relevant parameters – the relevance of experience, company location, and the ratio of good to bad reviews – and identify the leaders.
Step 4. Communicating
After an organization has filtered out the most relevant candidates, it is time to contact them and start discussing the project idea. At this stage, it is critical to analyze the communication with BI consultants, as it will help to make a more confident final choice.
Here are some communication aspects that are worth considering:
Does a consultant show interest in our idea? Is a consultant committed to answering our questions?
Is a consultant open and transparent about its expertise?
Is a consultant ready to share contacts of its clients?
Can a consultant’s team explain why we should prefer them over competitors?
Does a consultant make a good impression?
If a candidate has passed all the filters, the organization can choose it for providing BI advisory. However, if none of the candidates meets the requirements, corporate decision-makers may consider initiating a new search cycle and searching for other providers.
Today, implementing BI technology may be considered a natural step for any growing enterprise aiming at enhanced decision-making and competitiveness. Since BI development is very challenging, many organizations prefer to engage third-party BI consultants, who can validate ideas, create project plans, and, if necessary, take over the BI implementation.
However, an organization should not contact the first BI consultant it comes across, as it may lead to project failure. A clear understanding of business objectives and a comprehensive candidate analysis are the keys to choosing the right BI consultant.
Running a small business nowadays requires careful consideration, especially with the technology used. If you want to maintain an edge in your industry, cloud technology is something to keep in mind. Cloud services allow convenient accessibility of data. Keep in mind that all it takes for your company to fail is a power outage, a cyber threat, or a technological malfunction.
The cloud will ensure your daily business operations flow seamlessly, ensuring better productivity and security. Today, you have an array of cloud services available at your disposal, which can make the selection process a challenging one. To streamline your company’s daily operations, consider checking out kissingerassoc.com/software/acumatica-cloud-erp/ and other reliable online sources to centralize all data into a simple interface.
What Is Cloud Service?
The increasing availability of cloud services allows a wide range of options for storing databases, files, and servers. With cloud services, you know that all sensitive business data are safe. Generally, the service is cost-effective and includes several convenient features.
Additionally, cloud services ensure seamless accessibility of data from any location. The feature makes the collaboration process among the workforce convenient.
In simple terms, cloud service allows businesses to have dedicated fixed storage in a secure place. It also allows access to data in a remote server. Today, there are various types of cloud services available, and the most popular include cloud backup, cloud hosting, and Software as a Service (SaaS).
Knowing more about cloud services is one way to ensure a head start. Consider checking out snowflake cloud services and similar providers to understand better what they can do for your small business.
Considerations When Choosing A Cloud Service For A Small Business
If you want to ensure your small business maintains an edge, cloud services are worth considering. Another advantage of the service is helping cut down costs since it minimises the need to maintain an in-house IT team and on-premise hardware.
Today, the abundant providers of cloud services can make it challenging to choose the right one for your small business. Luckily, there are valuable pointers to remember to help you make the right choice.
1. Determine The Specific Needs Of Your Business
A common mistake by many business owners you must avoid is diving headfirst into researching cloud computing without figuring out the specific needs.
It’s crucial to remember that cloud services can meet the various needs of the business. With this in mind, prioritise your business needs.
Nowadays, you can find cloud-based team collaboration tools, cloud Customer relationship management (CRM) or Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, and cloud file storage options. As your business grows, consider more advanced cloud services that meet your growing IT needs.
2. Learn About The Certifications And Standards
Cloud service providers capable of complying with the recognised standards and quality frameworks clearly adhere to the industry’s best practices and standards. Although the standards will not determine which service you’ll choose, they’ll go a long way in helping you shortlist potential options.
During the selection, you should look for effective data management, structured processes, visibility of services, and superior knowledge management. It would be best to determine how the provider you’re considering plans to resource and sustain strict compliance with the standards.
3. Know The Quality Of Customer Support
A key consideration when selecting a cloud service is the quality of customer support. The ideal way to know is to check out online reviews. Good customer support is crucial to making the utilization of the technology manageable. Try to shortlist providers capable of providing technical support 24/7 via chat, phone, or email.
4. Look For Proper Documentation
Good documentation is one of the key indicators to watch out for when selecting a cloud service. Consider it a positive sign if a provider offers straightforward documentation on its website about using the service. Today, some trustworthy service providers offer in-depth guides for their products.
If you want to avoid the hassle and ensure your business operations run seamlessly in the cloud, proper documentation will help ensure you stay on the right path.
5. Scrutinize The Service Level Agreement (SLA)
The service level agreement (SLA) should be an important consideration when selecting a cloud service. Generally, it’s an agreement that establishes the minimum level of service to expect. While assessing the capability of a cloud service provider, thoroughly read the SLA and check out the essential elements, such as what the provider can do in case of unforeseen events such as power outages or data loss, security practices, and potential downtime.
For small businesses, investing in the right technology, such as the cloud, is worth considering. Cloud technology plays a key role in streamlining operations by saving time and money, especially with the technical aspect of running your business. These valuable insights will guide you in choosing the right cloud service for your small business.
When entrepreneurs start their businesses, they don’t always consider trademarking them. However, having one has several benefits for your business. Your trade name is a valuable asset that might make you a fortune. A trademark is also an excellent way to protect your company. As a result, irrespective of how big or small your business is, it’s a worthwhile investment.
In a world where entrepreneurship is booming, small businesses are abundant. Businesses all over the globe are creating products and services intending to get a share of the market. While you could differentiate yourself based on product or service features, differentiating your brand may be far more important. All companies have trade names. However, no two companies should be registered under the same name. You can check the Intellectual Property Laws in your country to learn more about the significance of trademarks.
That said, below are some of the reasons why you should register your business trademark.
1. It’s Inexpensive To Obtain
Unlike other forms of intellectual property, trademarks are usually inexpensive to obtain. You can use platforms such as Trademark Engine to create one from the comfort of your home.
A trademark protects your brand name, but it’ll also save you money if there’s a legal conflict. If you have legitimate proof that you have the trademark for your business, it puts you at a vantage point in legal proceedings. Consequently, it also makes it harder for you to get sued.
2. It Adds Value To Your Business
Registering your business trademark may increase your business value. In this competitive world, businesses realize the power of branding and image. How people perceive your brand is important and may directly correlate to profitability. Brands carry value because they communicate what your company is about. The goal is to create a company perceived as valuable and credible. One way of achieving that is by obtaining a trademark. A trademark may make your business more recognizable and trustworthy.
Your brand name is an intangible asset. It’s hard to measure how much a brand is worth. But a credible trademark could boost your business value as the brand grows. This is good for business because a valuable trademark could increase the selling price if you want to sell your business. It may also help you gain leverage in negotiations if you’re undergoing a merger.
3. Provides Legal Protection
Obtaining a trademark provides legal protection for your business or brand name. A trademark signifies that a specific name, brand, product, or service is legally registered in your name. So, no one else is allowed to use it, or it may be deemed intellectual property infringement. Also, depending on your region or jurisdiction, you may have the option to make your trademark incontestable after a certain period. This adds to the protection of your trademark.
Should any conflicts arise because of your legally registered trademark, you’ll have the law on your side. This also means that if you prevail in a court case, you’ll be able to sue the other company or person for damages.
4. Gives You Operational Freedom
Once you have a trademark, you now have the liberty to conduct business freely. If you don’t have a trademark, there’s a chance that conflicts may arise. Someone in a foreign country could register the exact name (or a similar one) before you do. In such an instance, you may not have leverage should legal proceedings arise because, technically, they legally registered the name.
Most legal disputes unfold in this manner and it’s hardly intentional. Keep in mind that all over the world, hundreds, if not thousands, of trademark applications are submitted daily. You may be shocked to find that the name you had in mind is already taken. This happens often but you’ll be free to operate without worry if you have a distinct registered trademark.
5. Creates Better Relationships
Trademarking your business may increase its credibility. Certain cultures could see you more favorably if your company has a trademark. Prospective partners may be concerned about this because they’ll also be investing in your company. Since they’ll be introducing your products or services into their country, their reputation is also at stake. They also want to be protected. For example, if your product is defective, it may help to have a warranty on your branded products because it shows that you’re accountable for the defect. So don’t underestimate the value of having a trademark.
6. Good For Marketing
The trademark sign is also useful in marketing. You may be familiar with several well-known companies in your area that carry the “R” sign, which represents a trademark. That emblem is useful in marketing since it conveys credibility. This may improve consumer trust and encourage the general public to take your company seriously.
The most significant benefit of registering your company’s trademark is its legal protection. Legal disputes arising from trademarks are often unintentional. But it’s also caused by entrepreneurs that don’t prioritize the legal process of trademarking. If you haven’t registered yet, consider obtaining a trademark for your brand or business as soon as possible. That way, you can operate your business without much worry.
Businesses and individuals across the globe are facing difficulties due to rising inflammation levels in the current geopolitical situation. People are already beginning to make adjustments to combat these difficulties. Here, we will discuss how using technology to its full potential can help you to protect your finances in 2023.
The level at which you use technology varies greatly depending on what you do and the size of your business. You may be an entrepreneur, an investor, or have a growing business. Whatever the case may be, you need a strategy. Carefully analyse your technology needs and how you can make the most of what you already have at hand. When you think of artificial intelligence, you might think of it as being inaccessible and expensive; however, AI takes many forms and, depending on your requirements, can now be incredibly accessible. For example, thanks to AI, getting approval on a loan or other types of credit can be processed within a matter of hours. You can also easily track your finances and stick to budget goals thanks to AI-powered algorithms.
Don’t underestimate the power of automation. It is an incredibly simple tool that can be used over a wide variety of tasks and mediums. Automation can prove invaluable for businesses of all sizes, helping streamline operations and improve efficiency. But also, on a personal level, having a manageable and realistic budget is vital going into the new year, and having automated savings and payments set up will massively help to keep your spending in check. Ensuring that you have automated savings in place will be the most beneficial, as it means you will have an emergency fund to fall back on if necessary. Another benefit of automation is setting up minimum payment amounts to your credit cards, meaning that you don’t have costly penalties and late fees.
Thanks to cutting-edge technology, including AI and machine learning, there are now endless apps and platforms that can help you better manage all your assets, including everything from monthly budgeting, shopping, pensions and investments. For example, for investors, apps and trading platforms allow you to buy and sell a wide range of assets, including Bonds, ETFs, Options, Futures and CFDs, using the latest tech, including robo advisors. The newest investment apps also allow you to put in place automatic stop-loss orders, which protects you from excessive losses. Data analytics for investments are also set to improve further in the coming years, offering even greater visibility of asset performance. You can also find apps that will help you to monitor your expenses, use coupons, track payments, and categorise your spending. With mentions of an economic downturn, it could be easy to panic, but keeping a clear head and making small changes will help you prepare effectively. There is no way to see into the future, but taking some simple steps and utilising the latest technology we have at hand could make a difference over the coming year.
Robotic process automation (RPA) is a hot topic among businesses for many reasons. It increases productivity, which in turn increases profit. Business efficiency is another area where RPA can do wonders.
While RPA can impact a company positively, many business owners still need to be wary about adopting the technology. However, the whole point of robotic process automation is to free workers’ time and energy to focus on more vital activities.
This article aims to provide information about the commercial advantages of RPA so you can start adopting it. As you read on, you’ll understand how investing in RPA for your company is money well spent.
Ways RPA Can Improve Your Small Business
Say you’re looking to implement RPA in your business. The first thing you must do is look for a reliable IT company to provide and give you the necessary adjustments for your specific business. Online resources like https://www.1rivet.com/rpa-finance/ and others give you insight about companies that can help you find a service provider to help you implement this tool.
That said, here are several ways a small business can benefit from RPA:
1. Potential To Save More Money
When combined with workflow tools, robotic process automation solutions can significantly benefit businesses. Contrary to popular belief, the two methods complement each other rather than compete.
To complete a task, the program looks for instructions from the workflow tool. It then carries them out and reports its progress back to the workflow tool once it receives those instructions. In a nutshell, RPA and workflow tools complement each other and form the necessary circuit for efficiency at a reasonable cost.
2. Enables Staff To Focus On Higher-Priority Tasks
When you automate routine process, you can also improve employee morale. Some experts found a correlation between job satisfaction and the amount of effort put in by an individual. For instance, when workers succeed in their roles, they want to be recognized for it. This expectation is an active motivator, helping businesses attract and retain ambitious workers.
A secondary advantage of workers’ happiness is that they’re less likely to look for other opportunities when they’re happy and fulfilled in their occupations. This can improve your retention rates significantly and attract
3. Increases Opportunities In Expanding And Scaling Your Business
When entrepreneurs are ready to take their company to the next level, they frequently face challenging choices. Oftentimes, there’s a lack of adaptability in a company due to the ever-increasing number of tasks and responsibilities. As a result, business owners fail due to inflexibility even though the demand is there.
At this point, RPA can help you with various processes to get you closer to your goals. In addition to the monetary aspects of your business, you can also use RPA for any mundane jobs that need accomplishing. Because of RPA, even small businesses can stand toe to toe with their larger counterparts, responding to shifting market demands quickly.
4. Provides Additional Analytics
When robots do the work, situations like data leaks, outdated information, and wrong analytics are less likely to happen. RPA allows businesses to see through their data and obtain verified, actionable insights with little human error. Businesses can also utilize RPAs in places where human data collection might be impractical.
As a result, businesses can achieve a deeper and more complete understanding about their operations, industry, etc., by collecting and analyzing data from various sources. Meanwhile, workers have more time to devote to advanced analytics, ultimately improving overall decision-making.
5. Improves Communication Within The Company
Switching to RPA is ideal for businesses because its intelligence can better handle your essential communication procedures. Workers don’t have to worry about updating files or making small changes because RPA can change single documents with triggers and procedures and make these changes in other documents. Thanks to these procedures, all team members will always be privy to the most recent data.
6. Enhances Customer Satisfaction
RPA may streamline your back-end processes and boost customer satisfaction when appropriately used. Because automation software handles routine jobs, human workers have more time to engage with consumers and increase revenue through cross-selling and up-selling. Your teams also have more time to address customer feedback and queries, improving customer loyalty to your business.
When a company adopts RPA solutions, it gains valuable insight into its most important objectives. With efficient business processes and IT in place, RPA is a straightforward model for a business to achieve their automation goals. RPA can also fix problems regardless of how old a procedure, platform, or program is, which is crucial for businesses to provide a healthy workplace in the digital era.
LinkedIn has established its presence in the professional world. The platform has over 750 million users globally. The purpose of LinkedIn is to serve as a professional network for business-minded people. In addition, many LinkedIn users are decision-makers in their companies. Consequently, LinkedIn is ideal for B2B marketing campaigns.
Because of the several features available on LinkedIn, it is easy to test locations and target demographics to obtain the best results. This article discusses LinkedIn paid advertising and how to set it up
#1 – Choose an Objective
Before running ads, you need to know why you want to run the ads. For example, do you want to increase site traffic or do you want to sell your good or service, or you want to increase brand awareness? LinkedIn offers several objectives for increasing conversions and awareness.
· Lead generation objective
This objective uses lead generation forms on the platform. The forms have prefilled fields and multiple-choice questions. So, without leaving the platform, LinkedIn users can submit their information and be converted in a few clicks
· Website conversion objective
This objective optimises for website actions you consider essential. For example, these actions could include downloading a whitepaper, completing a purchase, or starting a trial.
#2 – Choose Your Targeting Option
After setting an objective and choosing an ad format, you must choose your target audience. Your LinkedIn ads performance depends on the target audience. Fortunately, there are several ways to target an audience on LinkedIn, including LinkedIn audience network, matched audiences, and demographic targeting.
· Demographic targeting
LinkedIn demographic targeting is accurate because users provide up-to-date information due to the platform’s incentives. Consequently, your ads can reach a high-intent audience. With this feature, you can target your audience based on several demographics, including industry, job function, seniority, and skills
· Matched audiences
You can target specific users with matched audiences beyond those that fit certain criteria. To use this feature, you must create audiences within LinkedIn or retarget website visitors. The audience could be a list of companies or email contacts
· LinkedIn Audience Network
The LinkedIn Audience Network feature allows you to target users beyond the platform. With this feature, you can also target users from several partner websites and applications. Consequently, you can expand your audiences and increase spend.
#3 – Choose Ad Format
There are several LinkedIn ad formats depending on your chosen objective for your campaigns. Some of the most popular ad formats on LinkedIn include;
· Single image ad
Single-image ads are on LinkedIn feeds for both desktop and mobile devices. These ads consist of one image, an introduction, a headline, a description (optional), and a call to action
· Carousel image ad
Carousel ads are similar yet different from single ads. These ads consist of 2 to 10 images, an introduction, and a specific headline for each image. These ads are great for telling your brand’s story.
· Message ad
Message ads are unique ads that show in the message inboxes of LinkedIn users. These ads contain a subject, footer, text, and call to action. In addition, these ad format has a personalised feel since they show up in the inbox appearing like a direct message from a LinkedIn user on behalf of a company
#4 – Set Up A Budget
All campaigns on LinkedIn need a budget, ensuring that you spend enough for the desired results and not overspend. You can set daily, lifetime, and campaign group budgets on the platform. Furthermore, it is essential to understand how you are charged for budget setting. LinkedIn charges you through objective-based pricing. Consequently, each objective and placement has a different setup cost.
· Lifetime budget
A lifetime budget is the total campaign budget within a start and end date. With a lifetime budget, the platform will not exceed your overall budget, but there may be varying daily spends
· Daily budget
You must set a daily budget at the campaign level and use a set or continuous schedule.
· Campaign group budget
Campaign group budgets limit the campaign spend within a single group. Therefore, when setting up a daily budget, you can also use the group budget.
To wrap things Up,
Setting up LinkedIn paid advertising is not limited to the options discussed in this article. You still have to set a bidding strategy and optimise your ads for the best results. Setting up and optimising your ads properly can help you achieve your KPIs
No matter the industry in which your business operates, social media can act as an extremely powerful marketing tool, allowing you to expand your reach and connect with customers who may not have known about your brand otherwise. Currently, Facebook is one of the biggest social media sites that there is, providing the businesses that use its platform with a vast array of advertising options to take advantage of. Many businesses operating online will be able to yield great results through the use of such social media advertising alongside their other marketing campaigns, but is Facebook advertising the right choice for you and your company?
In the article below, we will discuss the benefits that advertising with Facebook can bring to your business, helping you to make the decision that best aligns with your business goals.
Reach A Wider Target Audience
Social media sites such as Facebook provide the businesses utilising their platforms with a great way to connect with their customer base and reach the users who may not have known about their brand otherwise. With over 2.6 billion individuals currently using Facebook, the social site is able to provide business worldwide with the opportunity to place the products and services that they offer in front of their target audience. No matter the industry in which you operate, Facebook will place your ads in front of the right people, allowing you to market your brand to a diverse and expansive user base.
Remarket your Products to Potential Customers
Remarketing provides a great advertising alternative for businesses that are still unsure as to whether marketing their products and services with Facebook’s platform is the best step for them. Remarketing is a more cost effective marketing option when compared to standard Facebook advertising options, working by targeting those users who have been seen to visit your website and show and interest In your brand in the past. This helps to keep your products and services in the minds of the customers who are most likely to complete a purchase, extending the sales funnel and helping to increase the likelihood that your site visitors return to make a sale at a later date.
Overall, there are a number of great benefits readily available to those who choose to use Facebook’s platform to market their brand to their target audience, allowing them to reach a wider customer base and boost their online visibility. If you decide that Facebook advertising is the right step for your business but find yourself unsure of where to start, what should you do?
There are a number of great online business courses made readily available for entrepreneurs worldwide, providing the vital information that they need in order to achieve their goals and reach success. With the help of a quality online Facebook Advertising Course, you could learn more about how to run your own ads across the Facebook social platform, helping you to showcase your brand and the services that you provide to an expanded target audience.
When two companies combine, it can help the new entity boost its market share and profits. The two main ways of achieving this are through mergers and acquisitions. Mergers occur when separate companies combine to form one company. While an acquisition is the takeover of one company by another. There are many complications that can occur during this process, which is why you should always seek expert advice from specialists in mergers and acquisitions. Below, we explore some of the potential issues you might encounter.
One of the most common issues is that you overpay during the merger or acquisition. Calculating a valuation for a business is complex work and involves projections and estimations that might not be accurate – especially when the business you’re buying won’t tell you if you’re overpaying. One way to try and avoid this is by being conservative with your offers: set yourself a suitable value for your acquisition target as a limit rather than an aim. This can ensure that you don’t overspend.
Incomplete due diligence
During the acquisition or merger process, it’s vital that you investigate your target in forensic detail. Incomplete due diligence can result in your missing a crucial detail that comes back to haunt you. To avoid any mishaps, you should ensure a complete check is carried out beforehand and that you have the appropriate seller representations and warranties documented in your agreement.
Even once an acquisition or merger has gone through, there are potential issues that can arise. Staff retention is one area you should prioritise. You’ll need to quickly structure the business in a way that boosts staff morale and retains the best talent in the business. Employees can often feel under threat following a merger or acquisition. You should allay fears by communicating clearly with employees and by building trust. By improving morale in your business, you can boost productivity and staff retention.
Mergers and acquisitions can also present security threats to your business. To complete the deal, both parties will be sharing sensitive information. The danger here is that a cyberattack could leave this confidential information vulnerable. Meanwhile, if you don’t have a security plan in place or the right training for your staff, you could end up with crucial data leaks. During the process, you should prioritise your data security to ensure that all parties remain safe during a merger or acquisition.
Mergers and acquisitions can prove to be incredibly beneficial, but they’re also complex to finalise. But by prioritising avoiding the issues above, you’ll be in an excellent position to try and complete a smooth deal.
The dangers facing businesses are ever evolving and becoming more and more deadly as times goes on. As many blessings has technology has brought, it has brought with it an element of malice for those intending to use it for the wrong purpose. Cyber-attacks are becoming more sophisticated, dangerous, and conspicuous so it is becoming harder and harder for businesses to put up the defences that will protect their people, their data, and their productivity. Every year, threats are emerging and developing. If this a growing concern for you and your business, you may not know where to start in implementing the changes needed to adapt to developing threats.
What are the best practises for business protection? What are the tips for cybersecurity? What software is available to build up your business’s virtual defences? You may feel powerless against the intelligent attacks that are surfacing today and daunted by the prospect of building secure barriers against them. Therefore, research is so valuable and hopefully through the information and suggestions that have been collected in the following article, you can begin your journey of education and start considering the changes you can implement to improve the security of your business.
Tips for Building a Strong Defence for Cyber Security
As the dangers change, so do the suggestions for building a defence. However, these basic principles should stand you in good stead to be prepared for cyberattacks when they occur.
Stay up to date. This principle applies to various areas of business practises. Software updates are essential to add new features, fix bugs and upgrade software. Since vulnerabilities in software will be one key way that attacks can creep in, it’s vital that you do all you can to keep software at is most up to date version. The same things applies when it comes to hardware. To support the most up to date software, you need to have up to date hardware. If not, older machines are slower to respond to cyber-attacks and could leave the system weak to threats. A major aspect of staying up to date is in education and training. Users are a vulnerability in your defences, especially if they don’t know what to look out for when it comes to cyber threats. One mistake from an untrained employee could bring cyber disaster for the whole system. Evidently training is essential, and this training needs to be constant, up to date and in line with the most relevant practises.
Think before you click. It may sound like an obvious suggestion, but so many threats gain access to system from people opening emails and clicking links and attachments without thinking about it before hand. It’s important to be on the lookout for phishing scams that cleverly impersonate a reputable source, but danger lies within. Don’t open suspicious emails, don’t download attachments from unknown sources, don’t respond to unverified requests for information. Try hovering over a link to see the destination URL before you click on it. Basically, think about things before you do them and you’re less likely to fall victim to a cyberattack that exploit your naivety.
Make the most of software. If you need to share confidential information, use a secure file-sharing software solution instead of emails that can be intercepted and sent to mistaken address. Using a secure file-sharing solution will guarantee the encryption of the information and the need for authentication for the file to opened on the receiving end. Furthermore, look for anti-virus and anti-malware software that you can implement to build up your defences against these threats. While it’s impossible to eliminate the threat completely, you can reduce your vulnerability with this kind of protective software.
Consider the strength of your network connections. Avoid using public networks which you share with everyone else that is connected to it. In these situations, any files or information you share is vulnerable to attack. Instead, secure your network and privatise the information you share by using a virtual private network, or VPN. This will protect the private data and encrypt your connection and will provide such a strong defence that even your internet service provider can’t access it.
Improve your authentication techniques. Don’t become lazy with your passwords, using easy to guess combinations on many different logins. Put more effort in to create unique passwords that add another layer of protection. Furthermore, many platforms allow you to enable a double factor authentication procedure to double up the security for your accounts.
Ponder before you plug in. External devices, such as storage devices, can be infected with malware that can spread to your own devices if you plug them in. To avoid this danger, make sure you know exactly where the external device has come from and ensure they are scanned for malware before you plug them in and access them.
Making the Investment
It will surely take investments of time, energy, and money to implement the security upgrades you need to empower your business and its employees to be able to face cyber threats. However, it’s vital that these investments are made in order to protect your business from the consequences that arise from a security breach. The loss of data, money and reputation can be devastating if a cyber-attack is successful, so though it may feel like a big investment, it is a necessary one. Educate yourself with the guidelines and best practises that you can implement and the unique strategies that your business can introduce to protect itself from danger.
Sadly, even the most useful tool can quickly become a destructive weapon when it is placed in the wrong hands.
This fact of life permeates every industry, every family, every community. Something designed to valuable and beneficial can be used to cause harm when in the wrong hands and moved by the wrong motives. An example of such a tool is that of social media.
On the one hand, social media is a blessing. It connects people over great distances, it opens the doors to communication for people of all backgrounds, and it provides a platform for education and the sharing of knowledge and experience. Social media is a great tool for businesses and marketers, allowing companies to increase their visibility, promote their content and products, and manage their reputation. 72 per cent of adults use at least one social network, over 10 million advertised on Facebook, and in 2020, the ad spend on social media in the United States was a staggering 40.3 billion dollars. Evidently, social media can be an invaluable innovation.
However, there is a dark side to social media that is becoming more and more apparent in recent times. It has been reported that social media increases people’s stress, affects user’s mood and encourages a feeling of anxiety and depression through the comparison it generates between people. It can be a dangerous method of spreading misinformation that has devastating consequences, and it can also be a platform for cyberbullying, offensive content, privacy invasions and even identify theft. Evidently, caution is needed when it comes to the use of social media.
As a business, there is a special effort needed to make sure that this tool is used in the best way for the benefit of your customers and your organisation. It can be such a minefield that it feels difficult to navigate. It can be so daunting, that businesses become reluctant to use it at all and give up on it completely. However, being limited by this fear of the unknown will mean missing out on a world of opportunity. Clearly, moderation is needed. Therefore social media moderation is quite a hot topic at the moment and there are more and more organisations offering this as a useful service for other businesses. We will now go on to learn more about what social media moderation involves and why it is so important especially in this day in age.
What is Social Media Moderation?
As the saying goes, “everything in moderation”. This phrase portrays the simplicity of the term in general – that even good things need to be controlled. Moderation is the process of controlling the content that is posted by a business on social media. If offensive or inappropriate content is posted, a team of content moderators work tirelessly to monitor the content and remove it before it becomes viral and accessible to the wrong audience. The activities of users on social media platforms are managed and regulated by social media moderation teams to make sure that the content is in line with the platforms rules and in keeping with a brands aesthetics. While you can control the content you put out, you can’t control the user generated content that others on social media may put out there. This is where social media moderation comes into play, managing the quality of the content while working to maintain your brands reputation.
Reasons Why You Need to Moderate Your Social Media
Evidently, moderation is a basic necessity of responsible social media use. We will outline a few specific reasons why social media moderation is so important for businesses to encourage you to put the right policies and procedures in place to protect your organisation in this regard.
Effective social media moderation will…
…Improve your businesses online presence. Social media platforms are a great place to gather new customers and keep an eye on the competition. While social media promotion gives customers an opportunity to communicate, the views they share are not always positive and may not meet the guidelines of the community. In this situation, social media moderation will reduce the amount of profane or offensive comments. This makes the platform safer for everyone and improves the online presence of your brand.
…Restrict the amount of spam content. There is a lot of valid, useful information on social media, but there is also a lot of spam. In an attempt to boost their profile, some users will pot fake news or commercial spam to the pages of popular brands to get attention. Social media moderation will remove these comments, reducing spam, improving the safety for other users, and helping visitors to a page to find genuine comments and reviews.
…Protect the image of your brand. Any campaign on social media has the goal of encouraging customer engagement, boosting website traffic, and increasing profit as a result. Unfortunately, the content generated by other users can start messy conversations and deviate from the purpose of the campaign. Social media moderation will again come into play, removing unwanted content to improve your company aesthetic, and maintain the image of your brand.
…Increase traffic on your website. A negative buzz around something you post on social media will likely detract people from your website, making them less likely to check out your page and investigate what you offer. Moderating such comments will help to induce a toxic-free environment and encouraging users to look at your website and thus improve your reputation and drive sales.
…Drive sales. On the topic of sales, genuine user generated content can be a great way of driving them as people are more likely to respond to objective third party reviews than self-promotion. Social media moderation will ensure that people see these recommendations and allow you to provide personalised offers and services to your audience.
There is no hiding from the fact that companies, both large and small, need to invest in legal aid to help with the smooth running of their operations. And, with more than 90% of legal and tax professionals saying their work provides them with a significant sense of professional purpose, it would appear their contributions are meaningful and essential.
The list of legal help available to businesses is exhaustive, so it begs the question of whether it’s better to bite the bullet and hire an in-house legal team or to export help to a third party. Both approaches have their good and bad points, so it can be a difficult decision for business leaders to make.
From reviews and housekeeping to informed advice, due diligence and regulatory compliance, corporate lawyers must wear many hats. But which is better, in-house or third-party corporate lawyers and legal aid?
In-house lawyers: Why choose them?
Companies and organisations considering an in-house legal team will need to be aware that it will require a significant outlay to acquire one. However, with that increased investment comes improved efficiencies and wider benefits to the business.
Time savings and efficiency improvements
One of the key targets for companies around the world is to improve efficiency and save time on their processes and admin. While an in-house lawyer might not be able to improve any technical aspects of your business, they can certainly speed up any legal processes and market changes.
External lawyers won’t necessarily understand the business-specific requirements of your company, which can cause delays in decisions as they need to be brought up to speed. An internal legal professional will have no such delays and can help to anticipate, resolve and identify laws and regulations before they become an issue.
Deciding to bring an in-house lawyer into your team does represent a significant initial outlay, with significant expenses in the first year including recruitment fees and employment costs. But with the costs of external lawyers regularly costing over £500 per hour, those costs quickly rack up.
An internal legal professional can provide their expertise on corporate, commercial and finance or regulatory matters swiftly and with a tailored focus on growing the business.
While an external lawyer can also do those things, they take longer to become familiar with the specific needs of the business, and at a significant hourly rate, costs can quickly escalate. For growing businesses, perhaps seeking acquisitions, and subsequent reorganisation efforts, outside legal help begins to make less cost sense.
Using your own legal team means you don’t have to give up control of your projects to a law firm that may not be as committed to your success as you are. Your projects will be completed to your company standards without the need for constant back-and-forth guidance, which can be time-consuming with outside assistance. For hands-on guidance, it’s best to trust an in-house team that already has a detailed understanding of the inner workings of your company.
What are the benefits of third-party legal assistance?
All leadership teams must seek legal advice from time to time, whether that is frequent or not. But it’s not always black and white whether you should opt for your own legal assistance or whether a third party is the safer approach. While often more expensive, there are clear reasons why businesses should choose outside legal help rather than in-house options.
Specialist knowledge and experience
While it’s great to have your own legal representative within the company, by nature they must have a more broad understanding of the law. Opting for a third-party lawyer means you can hire specialists in their field, often with many years of experience in their particular niche. Not only do they have the talent but they also have the contacts, network and resources to make a special project as watertight and legally compliant as possible.
It’s important to ask yourself whether you believe your existing team and framework have the capability to complete quality work in the areas required for any project. If you think the answer is a ‘no’ then it’s better to reach out to a specialist to ensure the right boxes are ticked throughout the process.
Gaining outside perspective
An in-house legal representative is a great choice because they are familiar with your processes and needs but that does mean they are at risk of losing some perspective. Particularly during busy times and intense projects, it can be hard for them to see the wood for the trees.
This is where an outside legal representative can come to the fore. They will provide an unbiased opinion and perspective, helping to deliver outside-of-the-box thinking which can help find solutions to problems in a much faster timeline.
Internal or outside legal help – which is better?
Ultimately, there is no one approach that is overall better than the other. Internal legal teams are great for more efficient processes and accountability while third-party lawyers can offer a depth of knowledge your company lacks. With commercial law and intellectual property law ranking highly in the most sought-after law fields, it’s clear that this area of the legal process is an essential one.
To ensure your business remains competitive, it’s important to weigh up the pros and cons in each scenario your business finds itself in, remaining flexible to ensure you choose the right solution for your budget and time constraints.
Cryptocurrency has seen a huge increase in popularity over the past few years, something that has been heavily influenced by the pandemic. During the pandemic, people had a lot more time on their hands and could also not spend their money on things like shopping or eating. This led to a lot of people investing in cryptocurrency, as they could spend their money wisely. One type of cryptocurrency that has seen a rise in popularity is Ethereum, which is what we are going to discuss in this article.
Cryptocurrency is considered a high-risk investment, which is why it is important to know what you are getting into before you invest. So, if you are considering investing in Ethereum, then this article is for you. Keep on reading to find out more.
Understand The Basics Of Cryptocurrency
Before you invest in Ethereum, you must first have a clear understanding of the basics of cryptocurrency. If you are new to the world of investing and cryptocurrency, then it would be a good idea to do some reason into how cryptocurrency works, so that you know how to invest your money wisely. As mentioned in the introduction, investing in cryptocurrency can be risky, but if you understand the basics and recognise when it is the right time to invest, you should end up with a successful investment.
Manage Your Expectations
Another thing to be aware of before you purchase Ethereum is managing your expectations. The crypto market can be volatile, so you need to have reasonable expectations of what money you will make. Although keeping an eye on the markets will be helpful, starting off your investment with a sensible expectation will help you make smarter investment choices. Before you invest, you should do some research into how to securely sell Ethereum as this will give you a good guideline of what to expect if you do choose to sell in the future.
Keep An Eye On The Market
When investing in any sort of cryptocurrency, it is important to keep an eye on the market. The financial market can be volatile, and cryptocurrency is no exception. Keeping your eye on the market will be useful throughout your investment as it means you can recognise when prices are changing, and you can make any adjustments to your investments as you see fit. It would perhaps be a good idea to download an app that helps you manage your investment, as the app will be able to tell you when prices are changing. Additionally, keeping up to date with financial news will be helpful, as you can get daily updates on what is happening to your investment.
Be Wary Of Scams
Although cryptocurrency is secure, there is still the potential to be scammed when buying Ethereum. It could be that one site is offering a particularly good deal and that draws you in or they are promising you a high return on your investment. The best way to avoid a scam is to research the website well and check that they are a legitimate seller of Ethereum. It could also be beneficial to read some reviews and see if people have had a positive experience dealing with the site.
Cybersecurity is becoming a critical issue globally, given the heavy Internet usage for businesses. Hackers find it easy to crack into your system and acquire sensitive information. In fact, during the second quarter of 2022, there were approximately 52 million data breaches. This is a significant figure, and cybersecurity awareness training is one of the best ways to prevent and lower instances of data breaches in your organization.
Essentially, you’d want your employees to know what cyber threats are, their possible effects on your company, and what they can do to prevent such attacks. With that, here are five tips for educating your employees to stay safe:
1. Provide clear guidelines
Be specific when training employees and describe the guidelines they must observe to stay safe online. As much as possible, avoid giving them vague clues or instructions on what they should do. Instead, present detailed information to enable them to understand better what you expect of them.
Some technology regulations you can impose include the following:
Always use strong passwords
Teach your employees the qualities of strong passwords and their benefits. For instance, passwords should be at least eight characters, have a mixture of upper and lowercase letters, and include numbers and special characters. Ideally, the longer and more complex the password, the harder it can be for hackers to crack.
Never give out login data
Emphasise to your employees the importance of not sharing any login information, even if the message they receive looks like it came from someone within the organisation. Ensure to establish strong protocols for detecting and reporting suspicious messages as well.
Scan computers for viruses frequently
Train your workers to turn on scanning and automatic updates. This can help ensure they get informed in case a threat is detected.
Whether you have employees working on-site or remotely, creating a secure workspace is essential. Doing so not only helps safeguard your business’s critical data but also allows your employees to perform their tasks in the digital workspace safely and efficiently.
2. Orient employees on the various types of cybersecurity threats
One of the best ways your employees can stay safe online is by knowing the different types of cyber threats. If they’re well-informed, they’ll be in a better position to take the right steps should a cyber-attack happen.
In addition, cybersecurity breaches take any form, and one strategy that hackers use to obtain your passwords, login information, and sensitive organisation data is to target your employees. Therefore, you can prevent your company from being a victim of cyberattacks by educating your staff about the most common threats like:
Phishing is a type of social engineering attack where a hacker sends you an email that appears to be from a person or organisation you know, convincing you to click on the link. This makes it one of the most common forms of cyber threats. According to Forbes, over 90% of cyberattacks infiltrate a company through emails. An FBI report also reveals at least a 400% increase in phishing attacks yearly. For this reason, you’d want your employees to be much more vigilant and report any suspicious emails.
This is a form of malware where attackers obtain access to your devices and then lock and encrypt the stored data. It denies you access to your documents, and you may have to pay the attackers ransom to regain access.
In this type of threat, an attacker cracks your password by using different programs and password-cracking tools.
With appropriate training and knowledge, your employees can be more aware of and easily recognise attacks that can put your system and critical business data at risk.
3. Highlight The Effects Of Cybersecurity Breaches
Cyberattacks can significantly affect your company, and one of the severe risks is financial losses. In fact, cybersecurity breaches can yield an average loss of USD$ 200,000 for businesses of any size.
Aside from the financial impact, a cybersecurity breach could disrupt your operations. Your system and network could be compromised and experience glitches that can lead to loss of productivity or total failure of all company activities.
Furthermore, it can also damage the reputation of your business. A cyberattack could make you lose the trust of your loyal customers and partners. Clients who previously trusted you with their data may turn away, and trying to persuade them won’t be a walk in the park.
That said, you can minimize such instances when your employees understand the severe effects of breaches. As they become more aware, they can be more vigilant and cautious not to click links from untrusted sources.
4. Educate Employees On How They Can Identify Distrustful Activities
In 2021, the mean number of data breaches and cyberattacks increased by 15.1% from the preceding year. This number keeps on rising as hackers discover more creative and intelligent ways to use to access your system.
For this reason, it’s crucial for your employees to know how to spot any suspicious activities and how to handle them. Let them observe the following signs:
Unexpected display of new programs and apps on their devices
Devices slowing down
Inability to control their keyboards or mouses
Unusual pop-ups during booting, shutdown, or usual activities.
Motivate all your workers to report any distrustful or suspicious signs straightaway. Even though the threats may not be significant, prompt alerts can help prevent issues that may lead to adverse effects.
5. Include Cybersecurity Awareness In Onboarding
Onboarding is a vital part of growing a company. When you include cybersecurity awareness training during this process, new hires can quickly understand their roles in cybersecurity from day one. Let them know the kind of data that requires protection and how they can do it.
Additionally, you can set cybersecurity expectations for them and the penalties they may face for failing to adhere to the organisation’s cybersecurity policies. According to an Egress report, approximately 74% of businesses have been breached due to internal team members breaking security rules. Thus, it may be good to set penalties for your employees to be keen on security policies.
Aside from the awareness, train your new employees on what they should do when a cyberattack occurs. Doing so introduces your workers to your culture and makes them feel like a part of the larger team. It also shows them you care about their safety, which can encourage them to stay safe from the first day onwards.
Hackers can obtain your company’s sensitive information in various ways. Educating your employees about cybersecurity awareness enables them to get an insight into how they play significant roles in protecting your organisation against malicious attacks. Above are some tips that you can consider when training your employees. You can also maximise tools and software for further protection, especially if you have a remote team to avoid cyberattack risks.
Moving digital assets into the cloud is a common trend for businesses nowadays. More of them find the convenience of organising and retrieval it affords highly advantageous to their operations.
Sadly, there are certain risks with the cloud migration process. Some of them include possible data loss or alteration, which can expose important information to data breaches.
As cybersecurity threats continue to skyrocket, it’s crucial to implement protocols throughout the migration process to ensure security. Here are some valuable insights into protecting sensitive data during a cloud migration:
1. Know The Current Status Of Your Data
Many companies tend to overlook the data being stored in various databases. Yet, failure to thoroughly assess and categorise data can only make asset retrieval harder, a threat not even hackers can hope to cause on their own. With this in mind, assessing your company data should be the first step in the cloud migration process.
Not doing so can increase the risk of losing data. So, start by separating assets you need to keep for pending and those that can come later. An assessment will ensure only useful and critical data will remain while categorising ensures convenient monitoring.
To determine the status of your data accurately and ensure optimal security during cloud migration, consider checking out the best IT support in Santa Fe and other similar providers in your area.
2. Limit Accessibility
One of the ways to improve data security during the cloud migration process is by limiting end-user access to data.
During data migration to the cloud, you don’t want the wrong personnel tampering with any assets. So, give end users access to only what they need to carry out their tasks. You can implement a two or multi-factor authentication (MFA) control. Either option adds an extra layer of security.
You also have the option to dedupe your company’s data. This deletes unnecessary copies of your data, compressing the amount for transferring and maximizing your storage. In the long run, this results in lower operational costs and better data security.
3. Make It Phased Or Step-By-Step
If you’re planning to transfer data to the cloud soon, it may be best to do it in a phased manner. Avoid the urge to fast-track it at once. Doing it in phases gives your handling team the time and leeway to monitor each asset being transferred.
Begin with low-priority data so you can minimise potential risk. Once all of that is covered, you can then move on to transferring more critical data. You should conduct testing on how the configuration goes and pinpoint security inconsistencies before taking this step.
4. Determine Compliance Requirements
Another crucial factor to keep in mind during cloud migration is compliance. So, learn the regulatory protocols applicable to your company data. You should know the specific backup, storage, encryption, and transfer requirements.
For example, financial companies must comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in dealing with sensitive customer data. Knowing these stipulations allows your business to stay on the good side of regulatory boards.
5. Use Data Encryption
During data migration, perform data encryption to ensure security before, during, and after transit. Remember that data is susceptible to sabotage or breaches in between databases. One way to boost security is to utilise secure transport protocols such as hypertext transfer protocol secure (HTTPS).
6. Determine The Impact Of Migration To The Remaining Data Center
Once you transfer your company data to the cloud, you still need to consider the remaining devices in your data center, such as your company drives or storage servers. Decide on what you’ll do with the storage equipment left behind after the migration. You have the option to reuse or liquidate them.
7. Review The Security Level Of Your Cloud Service
After successfully migrating your company data to the cloud and clearing out your old storage, the final step is re-evaluating overall security and possible limitations. Although the cloud is relatively safe, it has its share of weak points. Watch out for the latest vulnerabilities and ensure that you apply the latest patches or adjust the settings immediately.
Migrating your company’s data to the cloud requires a high level of security and some thorough planning. This can seem daunting on paper. But with these steps, you can ensure your company data stays safe throughout the process. Remember to cover all bases when handling something as important to your business as your digital assets.
Disruptions happen daily at factories around the globe, causing significant damage to production processes. According to Statista, there’s an estimated loss of $184USD million in 2021 due to supply chain disruptions globally.
No manufacturing business is immune from these issues, but you can take steps to mitigate them and ensure resilient operations. The manufacturing space is constantly evolving, and manufacturers need to stay on top of new technologies and innovations to improve their efficiency and productivity.
Here are some tips for resilient manufacturing operations:
1. Use an inventory management system (IMS)
Inventory management in manufacturing is complex, especially when you have multiple locations with different resources and suppliers. An inventory management system helps eliminate errors by automating manual tasks and providing visibility into where products are located and how much stock remains. It also provides real-time data about product availability and lets you know if any items need replenishing before they run out.
Statistics revealed a total of $71.4USD billion loss due to insufficient inventory levels, wherein products sold or promoted are products that are actually not in stock. These numbers imply that having an effective inventory management system is crucial for maintaining efficient operations.
2. Optimise your IT infrastructure
Manufacturing companies often rely heavily on technology to keep their operations running smoothly. However, outdated IT systems can lead to downtime and slow down productivity. To avoid this, optimize your IT infrastructure to support all your needs. Optimization includes upgrading hardware and software, as well as implementing cloud solutions.
Cloud computing has become increasingly popular among manufacturers. Forbes reported a 92% increase in businesses relying on the cloud over the past decade because it allows them to access information and applications anytime, anywhere.
With cloud solutions, you can maximize virtualization to create a single operating system instance across multiple servers, reducing costs and improving performance.
3. Implement a quality control program
Quality control programs are essential for ensuring the safety and reliability of manufactured goods. They provide detailed documentation of each step involved in the manufacturing process, including materials, procedures, and equipment. Quality control programs also include inspections to verify that standards are being met throughout the operation.
Implementing a good quality control program that meets your specific requirements saves you from costly mistakes by identifying issues early on and preventing them from becoming major complications later on.
4. Use data analytics to make informed decisions
Data analytics provides valuable insights into how well your company is performing. With this information, you can make informed decisions that improve productivity and profitability.
Manufacturing operations are complex. They involve multiple steps and different types of equipment. Data analytics can help you track every aspect of your operation to make smart, timely decisions.
5. Keep up with regulatory compliance
Regulatory compliance is a critical aspect of manufacturing. Manufacturers must comply with various regulations to protect consumers and employees. Some examples of these regulations include those from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
These rules govern everything from workplace safety to environmental protection. If a manufacturer fails to meet these requirements, it could face fines and penalties. Therefore, manufacturers must stay abreast of new laws and regulations.
6. Train your workforce
Training plays a vital role in improving employee skills and knowledge. Trained employees tend to perform better than those who don’t. When employees understand what they’re doing, they’ll work more efficiently and produce higher quality results.
A 2019 report by Statista reveals that manufacturing companies spend an average of $1308USD per worker annually on training because they know that investing in training will improve their bottom line. It’s not just about providing technical knowledge; workforce training should also focus on soft skills like leadership, communication, problem-solving, decision-making, and teamwork.
7. Develop a strong relationship with suppliers
Lastly, suppliers play a crucial role in manufacturing processes. Without them, there’d be no products or services available. As such, manufacturers must build long-term relationships with their suppliers.
It means establishing trust between both parties by communicating openly and honestly. It also involves knowing your supplier’s business model, strengths, weaknesses, and culture. By building a solid foundation with your suppliers, you can achieve mutual success.
To run a flawless and successful manufacturing operation, you must consider these tips. You may have heard or used some of these before, but it’s always good to review them. Remember, creating a detailed plan and sticking to it is the best way to ensure a resilient manufacturing operation.
Behind any organisation and company’s success is a team of happy, healthy, and satisfied employees. Any business with high employee morale tends to enjoy a healthy work culture and well-engaged employees and won’t have any problem sourcing or attracting the best talents in the industry.
Employee morale says a lot about how a business is towards its staff, and if you want to build or grow your empire, you should invest more in it. There’s a positive ripple effect in boosting employee morale in the office. Once you keep your employees happy and satisfied, they contribute more of their passion and commitment to the company, yielding an increase in sales and a thriving workplace.
Consider these basics to start improving employee morale in your organization.
1. Provide Promotional Or Growth Opportunities
Giving your employees a sense of purpose will boost their morale and motivate them to work towards your company’s goals. As a worker stays in the company for a longer time, ensure to provide them room for growth, such as getting promoted or transferred to more challenging roles. Your employees will feel more valued by caring about their professional and personal growth. Now’s the best time to invest in employee development.
You can launch a mentorship program or provide training, so employees will not get stuck with their existing skills and abilities. Always offer opportunities for them to improve their professional skills. Motivation comes from feeling that you are growing and developing as an employee. After all, your company can ultimately take advantage of employees with increasing talent and skills.
2. Organise Team-Building Activities
Team-building activities that bring employees closer together are crucial to fostering positive morale. A large part of a thriving workplace is because of the strong professional relationships between all team members. Fortunately, there are many team-building ideas that you can apply to nurture relationships. Finally, when working relationships are sturdy and effective, the overall productivity of the company will also improve.
Organise team lunches and happy hours if you work in the same office. Remote teams, however, may have a challenging time organizing these kinds of events. But you can always use remote work tools, where people can conduct conferences and hold fun virtual team-building activities together. What’s important is to schedule these activities frequently, so everyone feels unified as a family in the organisation.
3. Implement A Rewards And Recognition System
A good and positive workplace should always dwell on the positive side of things. Therefore, it’s important to have recognition and reward systems. Employees are more productive when they feel appreciated. The best way to boost employee morale is to recognize them. Not only does recognition boost employee engagement, but it also increases productivity and loyalty, which leads to higher retention.
Contrary to what other business leaders expect, employee recognition doesn’t have to cost a lot. Even sending out thank you notes for their job well done can already significantly impact employee motivation.
Employee recognition is very effective and has a long-lasting effect. You can create reward programs in different departments that pick out an employee of the month and give them perks such as free coffee coupons or branded merchandise from the company. These small investments can boost employee morale a lot.
4. Make Communication A Priority
Your company must facilitate and encourage communication. Its importance can’t be overstated. Everyone wants to work in a transparent company where they can express and show their real feelings and thoughts. It will allow them to showcase their creativity and help the company achieve its goals.
It should be easy for employees to ask questions, speak up in meetings, and collaborate with colleagues. Even when your business operates remotely, make communication convenient and accessible for everyone.
Managers should schedule one-on-one meetings with employees to encourage them to share problems and create resolutions. It allows them to nurture, build, motivate, and maintain happy and satisfied workers. When communication is open and convenient, the workplace becomes a better place for everyone.
Many companies no longer prioritize checking with their employees in this busy world. There are many causes of low employee morale, including burnout, poor communication, mistrust, lack of recognition, and a lack of growth opportunities. However, you can prevent these when you implement effective employee morale strategies. The more support and encouragement your employees receive, the more confident they will feel about doing their best work. Therefore, apply the tips in this article, and you’ll see positive results in your business.
Today’s business models depend on internet connectivity, and network outages are costly. Business systems and applications rely on the internet for optimal functioning. And even the slightest disruption in connection can have a detrimental impact on an enterprise. As such, it is critical to have a reliable internet failover option for your business.
Enterprises need a wireless internet backup to ensure continuity of operations when an outage happens. To this end, 5G has become a popular internet connectivity redundancy option for businesses.
This article explores the importance of the 5G network as backup internet for businesses.
What is 5G?
5G is the fifth generation of wireless connectivity. It is the next step in mobile technology, designed to transform the world. The new standard offers faster data speeds (upto 100 times), lower latency, and greater capacity for handling traffic compared with 4G LTE.
But what does that mean for businesses?
In a world where remote working is becoming the norm, 5G creates unlimited opportunities for people and businesses. Specifically, 5g backup internet is ideal for businesses to connect with remote employees and branches in case fiber cables fail.
The Importance of 5G Backup for Business Internet
So, what happens when your internet goes down? You could have a backup plan that allows you to continue operating as usual while your connection is restored. Solutions include secondary fixed lines and cellular network redundancy options.
But if you’re looking for an alternative approach that offers higher speeds, 5g backup internet can be an excellent choice! Below are the reasons why your enterprise should consider 5G as a backup internet connection:
Ideal for Temporary Use Cases
A 5G connection is ideal for businesses with temporary use cases. This includes retail outlets and branch locations that need a temporary internet connection until dedicated access is installed. Since 5G is a wireless solution, installation is quick and easy. You don’t need to wait for days to install your own network. Indeed, 5G allows for a new level of flexibility to help you get your business online faster and more efficiently than ever before.
Wired failover solutions don’t always ensure the uninterrupted network availability that businesses need. Mostly, network cables enter the premises via the same trench when installing the fixed lines. And when accidents occur, they might interrupt the primary and secondary connections. Such occurrences can cause unprecedented network outages, and the business will incur losses. That can be worse if the enterprise applications require 100% internet uptime.
Thankfully, the 5G network offers a less invasive and high-performance wireless option to ensure continuity of operations when internet failure occurs. It is a secondary internet source that can’t be affected by physical interruptions.
Businesses have a lot of different needs, but one of the most important is network reliability.
5G network delivers the most reliable and consistent connection possible. With 5G backup internet, your business can be sure that your customers won’t have to deal with signal drops or data congestion.
With 5G, you can rest assured that you’ll have a strong network connection no matter the location of your employees and customers. Also, the enhanced reliability provided by 5G means you don’t have to worry about dropped calls or canceled transitions.
When there is a network failure, enterprises still need sufficient bandwidth to run applications. And with the 5G failover option, retail outlets and branches can switch connections without compromising network bandwidth. It promises to deliver faster speeds and increased capacity for more devices than ever.
The 5G network can support many users and applications while delivering high-quality connections. You don’t need your IT support team to configure systems to give priority to critical applications.
The wireless connection allows all data to flow seamlessly without affecting the user experience. With 5G, you can count on greater bandwidth and higher speeds, even when your company’s critical systems are in use. You can expect faster download times, so your employees will be able to get the information they need more quickly.
Does 5G Replace Fiber?
When it comes to mobile connectivity, 5G is the only option that can work at par with fiber. It offers high data speeds, great capacity, and lower latency than 4G LTE. However, 5G doesn’t replace fiber by any means.
Instead, 5G compliments fiber by enhancing mobility. It makes it more convenient for enterprises to stay connected when there are interruptions in fiber connections. 5G is the best wireless option for businesses that need high-capacity connections and low latency for internet failover.
But fiber remains essential for connecting the world and businesses. It should be your primary internet option if you want to ensure enough optimal capacity and application performance for your enterprise.
5G backup internet offers availability, reliability, and bandwidth – vital capabilities of a perfect internet backup for businesses. The wireless connection overcomes the challenges of wired failover options to keep an enterprise running when the primary network outage strikes. So, you should consider deploying 5G connectivity to keep your business up and running in the case of the primary network hitches.
We live in a world where businesses constantly reinvent themselves to remain competitive. Automation and digitisation goals feature in well over half of all today’s businesses’ long-term corporate strategies, according to PwC’s most recent annual Global CEO Survey. Which is why artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual worlds or ‘metaverse’ related technologies and tools have risen to prominence, particularly in relation to improving on-the-job training and upskilling new talent.
In 2022, many businesses are now starting to benefit from the application of AI and metaverse technologies in providing streamlined training and onboarding for employees. Combining AI and metaverse technologies affords companies an incredible new opportunity to train and equip people with the necessary skills to navigate the future of work.
Indeed, the very nature of the future of work across a multitude of different sectors will be hugely impacted by new AI and metaverse technologies. It’s estimated that over 23 million jobs will be impacted by virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) by 2030, and that these technologies have the potential to deliver a £1.4 trillion boost to the global economy over the next eight years, according to recent PwC forecasts.
The real value of AI and metaverse training
AI and metaverse-based tools are benefitting both new, younger staff entering the workforce for the very first time, as well as established employees with a need to constantly upskill, advance existing aptitudes, or go through certain compliance training.
In addition to this, due to the huge increase in remote and hybrid working, post-pandemic, in-person training has become far more challenging. That’s why leveraging the latest virtual and augmented reality technologies can provide businesses in with lucrative advantages. For example, employees that train in VR simulations learn twice as fast as e-learners and four times faster than classroom learners, according to the PwC 2022 US Metaverse Survey.
Utilising the capabilities of the metaverse means that training can be conducted that activates employees’ senses. It promotes interactive engagement methods via immersive VR, AR, and extended reality (XR) training. Virtual metaverse training environments can also be made to feel more lifelike using tactile, haptic technology, enabling individuals to learn by doing lifelike activities, and co-learning with their colleagues.
Most importantly, these new virtual training environments allow the creation of a fully realised world that can be manipulated to appeal to the learning style of a specific individual. Which means that learners not only absorb and retain information faster, they get far more pleasure and enjoyment from the process. So it’s little surprise that metaverse learners are 3.75 times more emotionally connected to content than classroom learners and four times more focused than their traditional e-learning peers, according to PwC’s study.
Safe, secure and flexible learning environments
As the metaverse delivers a real-time setting for individuals to train in, they can immerse themselves in an environment that simulates any kind of real-world workplace situation, including high-pressure scenarios. Plus, as the environment is a virtual version of reality, it means that the learner can make mistakes without jeopardising the safety of themselves or others.
Virtual training on the latest operational processes in manufacturing, for example, can be optimised through the metaverse to perfect business processes, with huge increases in efficiency, staff productivity and noticeable increases in the elimination of waste materials and resources.
In addition to improving on-the-job training processes, metaverse training environments enable far more effective onboarding processes for new employees. When done well, the use of AI and metaverse technologies to boost onboarding has the potential to contribute positively to staff retention rate. In turn, this will have an impact on overall satisfaction and thus productivity, as an employee settles in over time.
Overall, the use of AI and metaverse technologies for training current staff and onboarding new employees contributes positively to the recruitment process. As it can reduce training time, whilst simultaneously increasing employee motivation and willingness to participate. Essentially, the metaverse can show employees what their job would be like before they even join.
Metaverse training improves employee engagement
Consider, for example, the fascinating experiment recently carried out by MGM Resorts, in partnership with the VR firm, Strivr, to allow job seekers try out roles using virtual reality to reduce employee churn. Not only did this pilot study show how metaverse training can improve employee engagement, Strivr CEO Derek Belch also noted that the data gathered from using VR “can be very powerful for both the employee, as part of their candidacy for a role, as well as for the employer to make better data-driven decisions”.
Time and money (through training and resources) can be saved on both ends if an employee isn’t suitable for a role. Now, more than ever, we have the power to connect candidates with roles they’re suited for and passionate about. This is key, considering, during the recent so-called ‘great resignation’ many people quit jobs with which they were not enthralled about. The metaverse allows job candidates to try careers they’re likely to excel in, leading to greater job satisfaction, and therefore higher levels of productivity.
With hands-on simulated training and exposure into a new setting, the latest AI and metaverse training technologies can provide businesses and employees alike the best tools to succeed. Equipping employees with the necessary skills they need in order to navigate the future of work.
Grant writing can be a daunting task. If you’ve never written a grant proposal before the idea of putting one together can be overwhelming. This article will cover the proposal writing process from start to finish, with tips and best practices along the way. By the time you’re finished with this advice, you’ll be confident you’re putting your best foot forward when approaching organizations for funding.
What is a non-profit grant proposal?
A grant proposal is any document sent to a funding body to convince them to support a project or organization. This is how organizations fund everything from science projects, to charity work, to new startup companies.
For non-profits, knowing how to write a good grant proposal is essential to their survival. Particularly as grants are often a primary source of income.
A non-profit grant proposal should cover the following bases:
The introduction should briefly describe the organization and its mission. It should also state what the proposed project is and why it is needed.
The statement of need should explain the problem that the project will address and be backed up by data and statistics.
The project description should give more details about what will be done to solve the problem. It should include information about who will benefit from the project and how they will be helped.
The budget should show how much money is needed to fund the project. It should itemize all expenses and there should be a clear justification for each item.
The concluding statements should reiterate the importance of the project and summarize what has been presented in the proposal.
How to write an effective grant proposal for a non-profit project
Writing a successful grant proposal requires preparation and research. You’ll need to identify potential donors and consider the work they’re interested in funding, as well as craft a compelling case for your project. Follow these tips to learn how to write an effective grant proposal for your non-profit project.
Know your audience and connect with them
Before you start writing, think about who will be reading your proposal. What kind of information do they need or want to know? What would grab their attention and make them want to support your project? You should research the organization and submission guidelines thoroughly; only send your proposal to funds or donors you’re qualified for.
Slightly personalize your proposal to each new body you’re sending it to, making sure that you connect with each one individually. You can also use concrete examples and stories to make your mission relatable, by bringing these people and issues to life.
Keep it focused
A good story has a clear beginning, middle, and end. In other words, don’t try to cram too much information into your proposal. Stick to the most essential points and tell them in a way that is easy to follow. A successful grant proposal won’t be your last point of contact with a funding body, so you can always give more information on a call later on.
Don’t try to gloss over any challenges or potential risks associated with your project. Reviewers will see through this and it will hurt your credibility. Instead, show that you’re aware of these issues and have a plan for addressing them. In the non-profit world, it is more important to show that your organization reflects on potential issues, acknowledges complexities, and, in doing so, is able to provide unique solutions.
Write a strong cover letter
Your cover letter is your first chance to make a good impression on a prospective funder. It should be concise, convincing, and personalized to the specific funder you’re pitching to.
Your cover letter should be no more than one page. Get to the point and demonstrate the necessity of your project. Be sure to also mention any previous grants you have received from this funder and how those funds made a positive difference. Alternatively, mention similar (successful!) projects they’ve funded that covered similar ground.
Introduce your organization
After your cover letter, start by introducing your organization and any previous successes you’ve had. Be sure to clearly state how your work aligns with the funding source’s goals and priorities. Then, you can move on to a short executive summary detailing project activities, expected outcomes, and budget.
Start with a short executive summary
Funding bodies look at grant proposals like yours all day. To stand out, you need to make your pitch on the first page or two. It’s the same reason academic papers always start with an abstract: the reader can decide within a couple of minutes whether this is worth reading in full.
To write an effective executive summary, you need to cover the following points:
Outline the problem you’re trying to solve.
Briefly explain why your solution is novel or is reliably proven to work.
Demonstrate that your organization has the experience and skills for this project.
Outline the budget you’re asking for, and how you’re going to evaluate success.
It might be that the reader is only interested in a particular section, or needs to see your budget section before they read anything else, so consider using an online free PDF editor to add a hyperlinked Table of Contents. This should help them to easily navigate your proposal.
Set clear goals and achievable milestones
Once you’ve provided a brief summary, you can move on to your project properly. Start by telling the story of the problem people are having, and how your project is going to solve it. Make this convincing with SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-bound) and a few clear milestones which you’ll use to measure progress.
Outline your project
Now that you’ve outlined your goals, it’s time to detail how you’ll achieve them. The focus should be on demonstrating your expertise as well as how innovative and necessary your project is. Describe any resources you’ll need to buy to complete this work, the expected ROI and if possible the partners you’re going to work with to get them.
Where possible, tie your project back to work you’ve seen succeed before. Those could be examples you’ve found in your research, past similar projects, or your own previous achievements.
Set your budget and justify it
Applying for grants and funding is often very competitive. With this in mind, you need to clearly demonstrate why you need this much money, and you need to demonstrate that you’re prepared for funding. Your budget should be intrinsically linked to the other sections of the proposal and, therefore, illustrate how each item is justified.
A successful grant proposal for non-profit projects
As they read your grant proposal, funding bodies go from “warmly open to your ideas” to “ready to sign waiver forms and get started”. You’ll make this happen by telling them everything they need to know upfront, but use the rest of your proposal to tell a convincing story about who you are, the problem you see in front of you, and why your non-profit is the one to solve it.
With hybrid working figures peaking to their highest levels on record, Jordan Brompton, co-founder and CMO of myenergi, discusses why EV drivers who have switched to working from home could be looking at a payback period of less than six years if they choose to invest in solar panels.
According to insight from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), more than 38% of the UK workforce now enjoy either a part-hybrid or totally remote role. While sceptics have suggested that this trend will begin to fall in-line with retreating COVID-19 cases, a recent survey from Tracking Happiness found that workers are reportedly happier and more productive than ever thanks to their newfound flexibility. As such, if anything, remote working rates are expected to rise further over the coming years.
While this scenario would have been considered almost unthinkable prior to the pandemic, multiple lockdowns have demonstrated that a significant percentage of roles can be successfully delivered remotely, resulting in a more engaged workforce and offering a number of commercial benefits too. Indeed, alongside better performance, greater engagement and increased staff retention, organisations offering remote options are said to have a 21% higher profitability margin.
But alongside professional flexibility, there are additional – financial – benefits available for electric car drivers who work from home and choose to invest in solar panels. Indeed, thanks to the latest developments in eco-smart home energy management technology, householders can not only slash their energy bills, but also significantly reduce the payback period of their investment into renewables.
Savvy saving – investing in solar
When it comes to self-generated renewable energy, solar PV is a reliable and efficient solution with a realistic price tag and minimal maintenance requirements. As the technology has continued to evolve and improve, it has become highly popular with homeowners nationwide.
To tackle the seemingly looming energy crisis, data from Solar Energy UK reveals that more than 12,000 photovoltaic (PV) installations were undertaken in July – an increase of almost 200% year-on-year. In addition, installers nationwide have been reporting enquiry surges of more than 1,000%.
But while solar panels will invariably help to reduce the grid electricity consumption of any household, typically only 45% of self-generated renewable energy is consumed. Indeed, while most household energy is used in the mornings and evenings, most renewable energy is generated during the middle of the day. Unless you have a comprehensive battery set-up, it’s most likely that you’ll export sustainable power at periods of low consumption and buy it back at a more expensive rate when you really need it.
In the past, this scenario has somewhat dissuaded domestic investment into renewable self-generation. However, the latest developments in eco-smart home energy technology have changed things.
At myenergi, we’re renowned worldwide for developing pioneering eco-smart energy solutions that maximise the efficiency of self-generated supply. We help users to harness the true benefits of self-generation through market-leading smart technologies, reducing their carbon footprint and helping them to take complete control of their energy spend.
We’re best known for designing the market’s first eco-smart electric vehicle charging device – zappi – a future-proofed solution that, alongside operating as a mains-connected charging device that automatically optimises around your energy tariff to enable charging at both cheaper and greener times from the grid, seamlessly integrates with renewable tech to harness self-generated energy.
The ability for remote workers to effectively ‘soak up’ excess solar during the day gives zappi users the opportunity to charge for free – quick, simple, zero emissions motoring. While charging your car through mains supply is still far cheaper and more environmentally friendly than running a petrol or diesel car, doing it with renewable energy can take EV charging completely off grid – reducing annual bills for electric motoring by upwards of £500 per annum!
For those who don’t work at home, solar is still a great investment if paired with myenergi’s eddi. The clever diverter diverts surplus renewable energy to domestic heating systems, such as an immersion, storage or space system, to provide users with 100% renewable heat and hot water. It can even be paired with a domestic battery device to store self-generated energy for use during the evenings.
In result? A smart home with minimal grid demand, powered by completely free renewable energy.
Embracing the future
Remote working is clearly here to stay. The benefits, for both employers and employees, are countless and the positive impacts of a more controlled work/life balance speak for themselves.
But rather than rely on grid supply, remote workers with solar panels should consider harnessing the benefits of eco-smart energy management to maximise the opportunities available. At myenergi, we’re proud to provide innovative ways for homeowners to embrace sustainability while also cutting costs and reducing payback periods through our pioneering product line-up.
It might sound obvious, but maximising consumption of self-generated renewable energy is key to taking total control of your home energy use. It’s a great opportunity and one to seize with both hands.
The Proptech M&A Market Report from Hampleton Partners, the international M&A and corporate finance advisory firm for technology companies, reveals that the first half of 2022 saw 55 property technology (Proptech) deals, 57 per cent up on 1H2020 and 12 per cent up on 1H2021 numbers.
The previous half-year deal count high was 2H 2019, pre-Covid pandemic, when 63 Proptech deals were completed.
Axel Brill, managing director, Hampleton Partners, said: “The Proptech market doesn’t appear to be slowing down, despite recent market volatility, as capital continues to flow in and the market remains thirsty for technological innovation, especially where it drives operational efficiency.”
Enterprise Real Estate Software M&A
The largest of the Proptech segments, capturing 25 per cent of all M&A activity over the past five years, Enterprise Real Estate Software such as document management and e-signing has become a vital replacement to traditional manual documentation delivery to counter travel restrictions, social distancing and remote work, experienced most sharply throughout 2020.
Significant deals in this segment include Spain’s Idealista’s acquisitions of InMovilla and Smiling Cloud to improve CRM software, real estate marketing, invoicing, and virtual property visits.
Real Estate Fintech
Deal flow in the real estate Fintech segment proved strong in 1H 2022, despite challenging macroeconomic conditions. Deals increased by 167 per cent between 1H 2021 and 1H 2022. Like most other subsectors, deal volume declined in 1H 2020 as a result of the COVID 19 pandemic.
Two examples of deals in the real estate Fintech segment are:
US-based public company Porch Group’s acquisition of Floify Inc. in a deal valuing it at $86.5 million, late 2021. Floify provides the real estate and finance sectors with automated mortgage origination and management SaaS as well as document management capabilities.
In May 2022, Altus Group’s $28.8 million acquisition of Canada-based Rethink Solutions. Rethink Solutions provides an AI-powered property tax management software with open APIs for firms operating in the North American real estate market. Additional features include tax and expense management, value assessments, budgeting & forecasting, and tax saving tracking software.
Property Management SaaS
Deal volume in the Property Management SaaS hit a record high in 2H2021 recording an enormous 250 per cent jump over the previous quarter and a 75 per cent rise over 2H2020.
Aareon’s acquisition of Momentum Software Group in June 2022 is a good example of an acquisition in this space, enabling Aareon to corner the Nordic market.
Momentum, provides property management and energy monitoring software, as well as related APIs for property owners. The software helps firms to manage units, develop housing, monitor energy data, and analyse consumption behaviour.
Top acquirers of Proptech companies – past 30 months
The top two acquirers of Proptech companies over the past 30 months and their three most recent acquisitions are:
MRI 12 acquisitions including: Apartment Data Services; Property Suite NZ and Angus Systems
CoStarGroup 6 acquisitions including – Business IMO; ComReal; Homes.com
The future of Proptech technology M&A
Axel Brill, managing director, Hampleton Partners, continued: ”Companies need to flex their M&A muscles and acquire competitive capabilities before interest rates rise even further, whilst also disposing of non-core assets to cut unnecessary costs.
“We expect larger technology companies, both public and private, will continue to actively engage in M&A to accelerate time to market and fill in product gaps. This is vital for tech giants as their competition intensifies during market downturns. As for Proptech valuations, the market will limit high valuations to businesses that have simultaneously demonstrated growth and profitability.”
Out of control inflation has now engulfed most of the world’s major economic zones, including nearly every developed and some developing nations. While many working adults manoeuvre to side-step rising prices in dozens of ways, what about owners of small businesses? Many of them work from their homes operating micro companies as a way to earn a second income. Luckily, many of the same techniques that individuals use to battle rising prices can work for entrepreneurs too.
One of the best examples is real estate investing, long a top choice for those who want to build long-term financial security through regular cash flow and multiple tax advantages. In the same way that families tighten their monthly budgets, entrepreneurs can review their recurring expenses and make one or more strategic cuts. Other tactics that can save owners money are outsourcing and joining the local chamber of commerce. Both have the potential to minimize various types of routine business spending. Here are some ideas to get started on bringing your small organization’s costs down in the face of inflation.
Investing in Real Estate
One of the newest wrinkles in the multi-faceted field of real estate investing is related to the surge in Airbnb-type rental properties. For those who operate small companies and also own a home, the situation can yield significant financial benefits. The concept behind short-term vacation rentals is to turn unused or rarely used rooms in your home into income generating rental units. The technique has grown in popularity during the past few years and offers homeowners a potentially lucrative, user-friendly way to generate cash from the otherwise dormant property. However, while the process is relatively simple, there’s more to it than just posting an online vacancy notice. It’s essential for potential Airbnb entrepreneurs to learn all the details about how to operate a profitable venture. Only then should small business owners decide if the idea is a worthwhile one for bringing in additional cash.
Cutting Operational Expenses
There are smart budgeting apps that can assist any commercial entrepreneur with developing detailed monthly income and expense statements. The goal is to pinpoint realistic ways to lower expenses without affecting profits. It’s important to avoid traps like assuming that you can save by slashing advertising costs. One of the core principles of commerce is that every dollar spent should generate income, so across the board cost cutting is usually counterproductive.
It takes a bit of soul searching to figure out what chores can be outsourced. That’s because it’s human nature for sole proprietors to want to do it all, even when they don’t have the time, funds, or skills to meet that lofty objective. For most owners of small enterprises, common candidates for outsourcing include chores like tax filing, advertising, and IT security. For business owners with in-house teams, you can still invest in employee development and outsource at the same time just be sure to outsource tasks that do not take away from your collaboration efforts.
Joining the Local Chamber of Commerce
There are many benefits to chamber membership, even if there are fees associated with membership in some cities. In addition to networking potential, members can learn about their niches from mentors, uncover new markets, meet local vendors, and learn new techniques for controlling costs. If your local area doesn’t have a chamber of commerce, consider starting one.
A business continuity plan (BCP) is a contingency measure you put in place to protect the company from unexpected disruptions. It could be natural disasters like floods, earthquakes, fires, or cyber-attacks.
A BCP will help ensure the operations continue, your staff is secure, and business assets are safe. Remember, you never know when such calamities will happen. Adequate planning can help you avoid losing revenue, customers shifting to your competitors, and incurring high costs, which could lead to a decline in your profits.
Significantly, your plan should be well-detailed. The plan’s goals and the financial resources dedicated to achieving them should be described in detail. With that in mind, below are five steps you can use to build your business continuity plan:
Step 1: Form A Business Continuity Team
Having a continuity team ensures you have reliable individuals you can rely on should a disaster happen. They’re a significant component when creating your BCP. Pick dedicated staff from every department in your company. Ensure they’re keen and organized in their work. Here are some of the most critical roles that will need to be filled in your BCP team:
Governing Management: The staff in charge of this acts as the connection between enterprise managers and the BCP team.
Program Facilitator: This person is in charge of arranging activities related to creating the plan, like budgeting and developing recovery plans.
Information Officer: This team member is responsible for acquiring and distributing information associated with the BCP.
Meanwhile, most businesses operate with an intricate information technology system comprising computers, data servers, networks, websites, phoning systems, etc. Managing all these can prove hectic. Therefore, you’ll also need a strong expert IT support team who can help you when the need arises.
If you’re in the US, it’s best to look for reliable companies like Tech Advisory that offer IT support in Providence. They can assist you in creating a complete strategy to stop repetitive IT-related problems, do regular consultations, and quickly remedy your technical issues.
Step 2: Evaluate Risks
After you’ve compiled a reliable team, assess all the risks that may affect the company and include them in your business continuity plan. It’d help if you gathered input from all the major stakeholders in your enterprise. From their perspective, you’ll know where there’s a significant risk and the measures needed for the threats to be averted.
Such risks include natural disasters like tornadoes and fires, information technology attacks like malware and data breaches, and other online crimes. After identifying all the risks, discuss them with everyone to get their take on where the loopholes are and how the risk can be mitigated.
Step 3: Conduct A Business Impact Analysis
A business impact analysis is a critical part of BCP because it involves scrutinizing how disruptions and calamities can impact essential scopes of your business. You can use the information to decide restoration priorities and policies.
In addition, a business impact analysis will allow you to see how the key roles operate and associate with one another. It guides you on what to do when significant functions stall, how they’ll affect business income, and how to continue future business plans.
Making it work is possible if you get honest and well-detailed feedback from managers and the staff in your company. They’re the ones who know the business inside and out. You could gather information from them through questionnaires, workshops, and meetings. Also, take the initiative to learn and understand how every department is different and its equipment.
Step 4: Document The Plan
Once you’ve gathered all the information, it’s time to compile it. You may have to write a few drafts before the final copy. The plan should include goals, objectives, structure, budget, timeline, BCP teams, relocation plans, IT disaster restoration, and testing schedules.
Once you finish compiling the plan, keep the hard copy in a secure place. Distribute hard copies to the company’s key players and leave several soft copies stored on the cloud.
Step 5: Test The Plan
Testing the BCP lets you know if the plan is productive or not. It’s necessary to do a test regularly to see if any flaws need amendments. This also helps ensure the plan is up-to-date and precise. Perform drills that simulate emergency scenarios to test your company’s preparedness. Also, reviewing it is essential because your team members may change from time to time.
A business continuity plan enables your business to stay functional in an emergency. Thus, it should be detailed and contain all the information about your business and the areas that could be significantly affected when the company suffers a problem.
AI adoption is the way forward to help tackle the challenges of urbanisation.
The world is moving faster than ever with billions of people on the move. In fact, by 2050, more than two-thirds of the global population will live in cities.
That’s why cities are growing at an amazing pace and this leads to various implications including transportation problems, food security, and resource scarcity.
There are many factors that accelerate urbanisation including but not limited to:
Cost of living
As a result, we need new innovative solutions to tackle the challenges increased urbanisation has to bring for us.
If you’re also looking for ways to tackle the challenges of urbanisation with AI adoption—read on. We have listed some use cases of AI in tackling some Urbanisation challenges.
5 of Al’s biggest benefits amidst urbanisation
AI for better parking management system
A UK-based study suggests that a typical car is parked 96.5% of the time. Despite this fact, parking facilities in big cities have always been a challenge.
Since urbanisation is growing at exponential rates and there is an ever-increasing number of vehicles on the road, it is necessary to have parking facilities that can cater to the growing demand.
An AI-based solution to this problem is a smart parking management system.
Imagine a scenario where a car owner can just drive into a parking lot, and the parking system will know the owner’s identity, the type of car, the destination, and other relevant information.
The parking system can then guide the car to the nearest available parking slot, and the car can be parked in the most space-efficient manner.
A similar parking management system by Wayleadr helps solve some of the common issues faced by traditional parking systems such as handling the payments, enforcing the parking area’s rules and regulations, reporting vehicle entries, and much more.
So, AI helps manage parking facilities in a more efficient way, solving one of the major urbanization challenges.
Food security issue
Food Security Issue is a major concern in cities where there is an increase in the population. In 2021, food insecurity affected 33.8 million people, and this figure will proliferate with the increase in urbanisation.
There is less area available to produce food, and the demand for it is much higher. However, this can be handled by AI adoption.
Farmers and food supply management companies can use AI to track the condition of crops and harvest the produce at the right time to achieve the highest yield.
They can also use machine learning models to analyse data and provide appropriate recommendations to solve food security problems caused by urbanisation.
AI-based smart surveillance and monitoring systems
Another challenge of urbanization is to protect people and their belongings. It is also necessary to protect critical infrastructure like power stations, water supply systems, etc.
Artificial intelligence can be used to create smart surveillance and monitoring systems to keep an eye on the city.
With AI, you can create an intelligent system to detect abnormalities and send out alerts. It can help manage law and order situations effectively.
Autonomous vehicles for a better transportation system
Urbanization leads to increased travel demand. This will create a huge pressure on the existing transportation system.
Autonomous vehicles, powered by AI, can be used to reduce the pressure on the system by providing on-demand services.
This enables passengers to book services from their smartphone application and get picked up from the location.
It can also be used for transporting goods from the source to the destination.
Increased efficiency of existing infrastructure
AI can help optimise existing infrastructure like water supply, power supply, and waste management systems. It can help in ways including but not limited to:
Predict failures and repair them before they happen
Automate the design process and reduce human errors associated with it
Regular monitoring of the infrastructure
Efficient water management by smart irrigation systems
Tackle urbanisation with AI
The world is growing at an unprecedented pace, and this could lead to several issues.
These issues can be solved easily with the help of AI.
In this article, we walked you through 5 urbanisation challenges that AI can easily handle.
From improving the parking management systems to catering to the growing travel demand, AI can help tackle some of the major urbanisation challenges.
The 9/11 victim compensation fund is the fund that was created for monetary compensation to the families who lost their loved ones, victims who got injured, and others who got ill resulting from the toxic dust after the collapse of the Twin Towers during the vicious attack on the World Trade Center (the Pentagon) and the Shanksville crash (Pennsylvania) on September 11, 2001.
Many people perished due to direct attack, while others suffered from medical conditions due to dust exposure.
Average Competition Fund
The average amount for the 9/11 victim compensation fund is discussed as follows;
The amount disbursed was a maximum of $7.35 billion, where administrative and operational costs were inclusive. It only covered two categories of victims; those injured physically, 911-related cancers, or those who perished from the attack.
Due to concerns about the recovery process for those who got injured and others who got illnesses from the attack, the Victim Compensation Fund was reopened in 2010 and reauthorized in 2015.
In addition, the fund was running out of Capital, and therefore, it was reauthorized again and signed into law as the Public Law 116-59-Continuing Appropriations Act,2020, and Health Extenders Act, 2019.
At least 3000 people died from the attack: 189 at the Pentagon, Pennsylvania plane crash claimed 44 people and another 2763 who were in or within the World Trade Center. Some perished due to direct attack, while others suffered from medical conditions due to dust exposure.
Claims for eligibility are as follows;
Be Registered with the September 11 victim compensation fund before the deadline
Have withdrawn, settled, or dismissed any 9/11-related lawsuits Should legal authority make claims on behalf of a deceased Have a 9/11-related medical condition
Show proof that they were present in the attack locations between September 11, 2001, and May 30, 2002.If you are a victim and want to file a compensation claim, you’ll need to work with a 9/11 compensation attorney. Here are reasons why you need an attorney.
Reasons Why You Need a 911 Victim Attorney
Expertise in medical malpractice
911 Victim Attorneys are experts in medical malpractice, work injuries, and workers’ compensation issues. The process of proving eligibility for compensation is complex because you need to prove that you sustained injuries during the 9/11 incident. An attorney can help you prove that.
Can help you get compensated
911 Victim Attorneys could help you get compensated if you or your loved one got injured during the 9/11 attacks. Compensation can be obtained through settlements and court rulings to cover your medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other expenses incurred due to your injury or death. The amount of money received is dependent upon the extent of your injuries or loss.
Can help you deal with your insurance companies
911 Victim Attorneys have experience dealing with insurance companies. They will ensure you get the maximum amount possible to cover your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other expenses incurred due to your injury. They know how to fight for clients’ rights to obtain compensation for damages caused by another party’s negligence.
As discussed above, it is advisable that any person experiencing a medical illness resulting from exposure to the dust from the collapse of the tower or families who lost loved ones to the attack get the pay-out for full victim compensation. However, you must seek the help of 911 victim attorneys.
Putting your business on the market for sale is a considerable undertaking, regardless of its uniqueness. This is why it’s essential to avoid the mistake of selling your business to the first investor or company that makes an offer. The search for the ideal buyer and a fair negotiation are vital elements for a successful sale that will reflect your hard work.
Moreover, business brokers could help you find qualified buyers for your business and provide an in-depth search and good analysis of the possible opportunities and offers. They will also prepare your company for sale and handle all discussions with potential buyers on your behalf.
How and Where to Find Prospective Buyers for Your Unique Business
Finding a buyer for your business is more complex than spreading the word that you are selling. There are various outlets available for finding prospective buyers for your business. But while industry organizations, trade publications, or online listing services could be viable routes, you need to understand that confidentiality is critical. Working with business brokers is the best way to find ideal buyers for your business while ensuring and maintaining confidentiality. They can field inquiries from buyers and reach out to prospects without mentioning your name and your business.
Separately, business brokers review qualified buyers to guarantee they have the monetary capital to buy your company and that they are an ideal fit for your one-of-a-kind business. Through a discounted cash flow analysis, all investors will consider your company’s potential future profits and growth patterns, whether your business is relatively new or has been in the industry for decades. Basically, your business’ value will be in proportion to these indices. Regardless of how unique you may believe your business is, with the right strategy and business valuation, you will sell your business at the right price.
Why Should I Engage the Services of a Business Broker?
Selling your business, regardless of its industry, can be complicated. From business valuation and confidential marketing to prospective buyers’ questions, it is typically a trying and time-consuming process for most sellers. While you may know how to run your business, you may not know how to sell it. On the other hand, mergers and acquisitions advisors can guide you through the selling process, from helping you prepare your business for sale, finding buyers, negotiating terms of the deal, and assisting with due diligence until the deal closes.
In addition, business brokers use multiple sources to find buyers for your unique business, developing a curated list of hundreds of potential buyers. Moreover, they pre-screen the buyers to determine if they have the financial resources to make an offer. Your broker will handle the due diligence process when they identify a serious business buyer.
Then, the mergers and acquisition advisor will negotiate the final selling price on your behalf and address all the regulations, licenses, and permits that impact the sale. While the selling process can be emotional and draining for you, the broker will help you maintain objectivity and guide you on best practices and what to expect during the closing process.
eCommerce has become an essential part of doing business. No matter what kind of B2B company you have, it’s critical to be able to reach out to customers online. You can do just that with a B2B eCommerce platform. Whether you’re selling products or services, having an online store will help expand your audience and grow your customer base. However, with so many eCommerce platforms, which one should you use for your company? Keep reading for a list of the best on the market today.
Selection criteria for choosing a B2B eCommerce platform
When setting out to find the best B2B eCommerce platforms, there were a few factors you should consider:
Ease of use: The platform should be intuitive and easy to navigate. It should also have a high-quality user interface that clarifies how to start building your store.
Customer support: Customer service is critical when you’re trying to build your business on an eCommerce platform—if you’re running into problems, you must know where to go for help (and how quickly they respond.).
Integration with other systems: You’ll want access to software tools that integrate seamlessly with your new eCommerce site so that your sales channels work together seamlessly for maximum efficiency and effectiveness. Your customers shouldn’t see those cracks in the system; they need seamless experiences across all fronts, whether online or offline.
If you’re looking for a platform that can handle your online and offline sales, BigCommerce is one of the best options. It has a wide range of pricing plans and features, including custom themes and integrations with popular apps like MailChimp, Shopify Payments, and Salesforce.
Further, the company’s support team is also known for providing fast responses to customer questions through its help center—often within 15 minutes—so there’s no need to wait long if you have an issue with your site.
Shopify Plus is a B2B eCommerce platform that allows you to sell products and services online. It offers many features, including a customisable storefront, order management, inventory management and fulfillment, customer management, and marketing tools.
Shopify Plus also comes with 24/7 support from industry experts who will help you set up your store or integrate it with your existing systems so you can get started as quickly as possible.
Magento is an open-source eCommerce platform used by more than 200,000 merchants worldwide. Easy to use and with a large developer community, Magento has helped many businesses grow their online presence. However, being easy to use means there are no restrictions on what you can do, which could leave your business vulnerable if you’re not careful.
While it may have been designed for B2C (business-to-consumer), Magento can also be used in B2B eCommerce, but it’s not ideal for this purpose because of its lack of functionality and poor support structure.
The architecture of OroCommerce allows you to easily customise it as needed—whether adding new features or changing the way existing ones work. This flexibility also makes it easy to add integrations with third-party software like inventory management tools or payment processors; this can help streamline your sales process and reduce costs.
WooCommerce is a free and open-source eCommerce plugin for WordPress. This platform is best suited for small and medium-sized businesses and large enterprises.
WooCommerce has over 1 million active installs, making it one of the most popular eCommerce platforms in the world. If you’re looking for an easy way to build an online store on your website, WooCommerce will help you achieve that goal by providing all the functionality you need in a single package at no cost.
Adobe Commerce is a B2B eCommerce platform that offers a wide range of features. Adobe Commerce provides a good user experience with a clean and intuitive design, making it easy for merchants unfamiliar with eCommerce platforms.
Adobe Commerce has a large customer base and is used by many large brands. The platform supports all major payment gateways, including PayPal, Stripe, and Authorize.net. It also provides inventory management tools to track your stock levels through integration with popular ERP systems like SAP Business One or Microsoft Dynamics NAV.
Unilog is a B2B eCommerce platform used by over 1,000 businesses. It offers everything you need to build and run your business and has a wide range of features.
Unilog offers products like:
A content management system (CMS) for creating stunning pages on the website
A tool for managing orders and customers
A product catalogue that lets you add new items easily
Shopware is a German-based eCommerce platform. It was launched in 2001 and has become one of Europe’s most popular eCommerce platforms. Shopware is built on PHP (a server-side scripting language) and MySQL (an open-source database).
Also, the platform can be used by developers who know PHP or even those without any development experience since it has a drag-and-drop interface that allows users to create their stores.
Shopware offers several extensions that allow companies to customise their online store according to their needs. Some examples include:
Shipping services integration
Multichannel inventory management
Payment gateway integrations
Comparing the 8 Best B2B eCommerce Platforms
Now that we have covered the top B2B eCommerce platforms let’s consider a few more essential points when choosing one.
What’s your budget? Some platforms are free, while others cost hundreds of thousands a year. If you’re on a small budget, there is no need to worry: plenty of affordable options are available.
Do you need an all-in-one solution or want to customize everything from scratch? Some vendors offer both self-hosted and hosted solutions with varying degrees of customisation options built in. Others may only offer one type of solution (either self-hosted or managed). Remember that this won’t affect how many payment gateways they support – just whether those gateways integrate with their platform’s user interface.
As you can see from the above comparison, many different options are available for your business. We’d recommend you start by looking at these top B2B eCommerce platforms, which will give you a good idea of what each has to offer. After completing this initial research phase, it’s time to decide which platform best fits your needs and budget before implementing.
If you run a business, you might assume that your legal requirements will be met by a corporate lawyer, with this type of expert helping to oversee things like contracts, employee disputes, compliance and so forth.
However, criminal lawyers also have a lot to offer organizations of all sizes, so let’s look at a few of the examples of their involvement in the commercial sector, and how modern companies can find the right representative for their needs.
Defending businesses against criminal charges
Individuals are not the only ones who can have criminal charges leveled against them. This is also a situation which companies may find themselves in from time to time, and so a lawyer specializing in business crime will be a valuable asset in this context.
From dealing with the initial proceedings following an accusation, to building a defense and representing your organization’s interests in the courtroom, these facets and many more are part and parcel of what attorneys in this field do every day.
Crimes covered include everything from bribery and corruption to fraud, tax evasion, insider trading and even road traffic offenses involving business-owned vehicles.
Minimizing operational disruption
The other aspect of a criminal lawyer’s role in the corporate world is that of damage limitation, which includes ensuring that the company can continue to function as smoothly as possible after accusations are made or charges are brought.
This in turn means that the brand reputation of a business will be shielded from erosion by false claims, so it truly is a multifaceted relationship.
Hiring lawyers that are local to your company is important not just because it makes things convenient, but also because it means that they’ll know everything about the legal system in your region. This specificity of knowledge ensures that they can navigate the process of defending your business effectively, without missing anything important.
If in doubt, ask partners and associates for recommendations, as you’d be surprised how many other businesses will have had to call upon qualified criminal lawyers in the past.
Providing planning assistance
It’s worth noting that you don’t just need to wait until your business is hit with criminal charges before contacting an attorney.
In many instances, companies choose to get in touch with lawyers as a precautionary measure, so that they can get advice and guidance on how to manage any legal speed bumps that may or may not appear in their path at some point in the future.
Preempting problems and being prepared to sidestep them swiftly is a great way to save time and money.
Giving you the gift of choice
Criminal investigations that involve businesses can feel like they are only leading down one path, with one possible resolution.
This is often not the case, and it takes a criminal lawyer to know what avenues are available, and what is the most appropriate way forward for clients.
If you don’t want to leave the reputation of your business hanging in the balance, and instead would prefer to take back control when things turn against you, hiring an attorney is your best bet.
The bottom line
Every business deserves quality legal representation, particularly when criminal charges are involved. Even small firms cannot afford to go it alone because of the prospect of negative publicity and prosecution putting them on the back foot for the foreseeable.
Are you looking to sell your business? Lion Business Brokers can ensure that you and your business move throughout the sales process without a hitch, offering you premium services that are supplied by its team of industry experts. As such, Lion Business Brokers has earned the accolade of M&A Advisors of the Year 2022 – USA for its devotion to producing and delivering quality.
Headquartered in Texas, Lion Business Brokers is a trusted and well-established figure within the mergers and acquisitions industry, boasting a portfolio filled with high-value projects. The company focuses on business sales, business valuations, and of course, mergers and acquisitions, with the customer’s needs always being its main priority. Indeed, Lion Business Brokers bears a fiduciary responsibility to its clients; if the client does not have a successful exit, Lion Business Brokers does not have a successful engagement. With years of experience under its belt, the company is able to secure the very best solutions that offer premium results, tying into its goal to obtain maximum value for its clients.
Since its founding, Lion Business Brokers has had the opportunity to represent a diverse array of businesses, the names of which it keeps confidential. However, the company does showcase a summary of businesses that it has previously represented, including service, construction, distribution, manufacturing, and retail organisations. Within these areas, Lion Business Brokers has worked with day cares, landscaping businesses, florists, bars, and much more, resulting in a vibrant and varied portfolio. Lion Business Brokers considers itself to be a generalist broker practice, which has cultivated an audience filled with a wide range of buyers looking for quality businesses to purchase.
Not only does Lion Business Brokers support sellers, but it also provides buyer representation. Developed for those looking to bolster their net worth through the purchase of a business, its buyer representation services provide clients with access to businesses that are perfect for them. This is one of many benefits that come along with hiring a business broker. In short, Lion Business Brokers’ service is simple: it acts as an intermediary between the buyer and seller, which then translates to greater ease and fewer issues with the buying process. The company’s team are skilled in negotiation, business valuations, and acquisition, meaning that clients can be sure that they receive a confidential and professional buying experience.
Lion Business Brokers credits its team with the success of the business, explaining that the team places what’s best for the client as a greater priority than their commissions. Passionate about what they do, the team work hard to achieve better results for their clients, maintaining the exceptionally high standards laid out by the business. The team consists of alumni from the University of Texas, Baylor University, and Concordia University of Texas, and boasts decades of combined experience, with staff coming from accomplished backgrounds. Henceforth, it could be said that Lion Business Brokers has employed the best of the best.
The company prides itself on providing an unmatched level of service, and this is truly thanks to the Lion Business Brokers team. Approaching its clients with a world-class attitude, Lion Business Brokers represents its clients with passion and integrity, which has created a positive reputation for the business. The five-star business has garnered a plethora of positive reviews, with clients praising each aspect of the business and its team. One example, left by a Private Equity Firm Managing Partner, reads as follows:
‘I have worked with Joshua on several projects. Joshua is a skilled intermediary who represents his clients well to the private equity community. He also does a good job with respect to educating his first-time sellers on the process and what to expect. We look forward to working with Joshua again.’
With business exploding in the post-Covid era, Lion Business Brokers can expect to delve into even greater success, as there are more active buyers in the market today than there have been in decades. Thanks to this saturation, Lion Business Brokers will have the opportunity to further diversify its work. The company’s future certainly looks bright, as there are dozens of plans in place that will lead to expansion and subsequent evolution. In a market that is currently increasing in size, this will be an exceptional advantage, pushing the company leagues ahead of its competitors.
M&A Advisors of the Year 2022 – USA is a title that captures the heart of what Lion Business Brokers does. The company deserves this title as it exceeds customer expectations and sets the standard for the wider market, serving as an example for other mergers and acquisitions businesses. In essence, the future of the industry lies with Lion Business Brokers.
United Kingdom, 2022 – Acquisition International Magazine has announced the winners of the 2022 Legal Awards.
Acquisition International has designed the Legal Awards programme to recognise and award those firms and professionals who have offered best in class legal services, as well as those who have strived to adapt and innovate in what has, by all regards, been a challenging couple of years.
Approaching its tenth year, the Acquisition International Legal Awards programme seeks to reward the hard work and dedication of those firms and professionals who have strived for a new level of perfection and professionalism. On the eve of the announcement, Awards Coordinator Kaven Cooper commented on the success of this year’s Legal Awards: “It was a pleasure hosting the awards programme this year and coordinating with all the winners. I would like to offer my heartiest congratulations to all the winners and would like to wish them all the best for their future endeavours.”
Acquisition International prides itself on the validity of its awards and winners. The awards are given solely on merit and are awarded to commend those most deserving for their ingenuity and hard work, distinguishing them from their competitors and proving them worthy of recognition.
Acquisition International is a monthly magazine brought to you by AI Global Media Ltd, a publishing house that has reinvigorated corporate finance news and reporting. Its topical news articles make it a valued read, and this readability ensures that advertisers will benefit greatly from their investment.
AI works alongside leading industry analysts to ensure we publish the most up-to-date figures and analysis. The magazine has a global circulation, which brings together all parties involved in deal making and, in an increasingly global deal market, we are uniquely positioned to reach the deal makers that matter.
About AI Global Media
Since 2010 AI Global Media (https://www.aiglobalmedialtd.com/) has been committed to creating engaging B2B content that informs our readers and allows them to market their business to a global audience. We create content for and about firms across a range of industries.
Today, we have 12 unique brands, each of which serves a specific industry or region. Each brand covers the latest news in its sector and publishes a digital magazine and newsletter which is read by a global audience. Our flagship brand, Acquisition International, distributes a monthly digital magazine to a global circulation of 108,000, who are treated to a range of features and news pieces on the latest developments in the global corporate market.
As digital transformation and remote work continue to gain steam, IT services remain absolutely indispensable for businesses of all types and sizes. Whether an in-house team dedicated to the maintenance and upkeep of systems or a reliable outsourced support provider, having robust IT support remains critical to keep a business chugging along in the face of numerous risks and challenges.
Having an ‘IT Guy’ isn’t just for the big companies, and no matter how big or small a company, IT solutions stand to add substantial value in terms of efficiency gains, and are cost-effective in the long run. If you’re still on the fence regarding IT solutions and support for your business, here are some key reasons why they are more critical than ever before, and well worth the added costs.
How To Choose The Right IT Support Services?
There is a lot that needs to be considered before narrowing down to an IT support provider that best aligns with your business needs and requirements. Ideally, you will have to consider a provider’s core competencies, solutions and offerings, certifications, testimonials, and lastly the cost and contractual terms being offered.
While there is no shortage of managed IT service providers, this often only results in choosing the wrong service, only to be faced with frictions, downtimes, and inefficiencies for the months ahead. This is why even reputed players such as USWired’s San Jose IT support services offer free consultations, and a demo to earn the trust of small and medium-sized business owners.
4 Reasons Why IT Support Remains Critical For Businesses
Productivity & Efficiency Gains
A reliable and competent IT service can essentially pay for itself in terms of productivity and efficiency gains.
Not only do support teams and services advise your business on the latest trends and solutions to supercharge your productivity, but they also help identify and cut out redundancies, and other issues that may have been weighing down on system performance.
Poorly implemented software tools and solutions are a major drag on productivity, and can materially impact an organization’s profitability and competitiveness.
With the rising complexity of enterprise tech solutions, it is far from the purview of even an average tech-savvy user to effectively set up and implement systems.
By outsourcing to a competent service provider, businesses can receive the best-in-class solutions, perfectly tailored, and implemented to their requirements without having to go through the extensive trial, testing, and learning curves that often come with it.
Most IT support services offer a turnkey solution, wherein all of your technical requirements are taken care of, perfectly in tune with your specifications, and all you have to do is turn the key, and start using.
Security, Privacy & Data Protection
The rising tide of digital transformation and remote work brings with it heightened security risks, data privacy concerns, and challenges pertaining to data storage, and management.
If the recent ransomware attacks on SolarWinds, the Colonial Pipeline, or the entire Costa Rican Government itself are any indication, things are only going to get more menacing going forward. As a result, your business needs a certified expert on your side, not just to identify and suggest precautions against threats, but even for emergency response, if things do take a turn for the worse.
The fields of cybersecurity, data protection, and privacy have undergone substantial evolutions in just the past few years alone, and there are a number of systems, frameworks, and best practices that can only be implemented with the help of a qualified IT support service.
IT systems, network infrastructure, and all of their surrounding frills create a number of different moving parts, with exponentially rising complexities. In order to ensure reliable services for both internal, and external use, constant maintenance, and monitoring remains imperative.
Ensuring the reliability and upkeep of these systems is best left to qualified professionals, who can respond to issues and offer quick resolutions without hampering productivity.
IT support services are the need of the hour, and their value far outstrips their costs if you can make the right choices and communicate your needs and requirements effectively.
With the increasingly complex nature of enterprise software solutions, businesses small and large will start to find it difficult to manage all their IT needs in-house going forward.
Indonesia and the GCC are leading jurisdictions for green and sustainability sukuk, together making up 53% of total issuance.
The report recommends promoting common regional and international standards, developing capacity with issuers, and expanding the wider ecosystem.
Global green and sustainability sukuk issuance totalled $4.4 billion during the first half of 2022, following a record annual issuance of $6.1 billion in 2021, according to data published by the High-Level Working Group (HLWG) on Green and Sustainability Sukuk. HLWG has issued its first report titled “Financing a Sustainable Future”.
The HLWG was launched in November 2021, during COP26, by founding members HM Treasury, Ministry of Finance in the Republic of Indonesia, Islamic Development Bank, LSEG (London Stock Exchange Group), and Global Ethical Finance Initiative (GEFI).
The report, produced in partnership with the Islamic Finance Council UK, GEFI Initiative, and LSEG, provides insights on the green and sustainability sukuk market, discusses key recent transactions and regulatory developments, and provides views from key industry stakeholders conducted through discussions of the HLWG and an industry survey. Featuring a roadmap outlining key recommendations to facilitate the development of the green and sustainability sukuk ecosystem globally, key findings include:
Indonesia and the GCC are the leading jurisdictions for green and sustainability sukuk, together making up 53% of total issuance.
Sukuk have been the main driver of ESG debt issuance in the GCC, making up 80% of green and sustainability bonds sold by GCC-based issuers during the first half of 2022.
On average, 82% of annual green and sustainability sukuk have been issued in international markets since 2018, reflecting strong demand from overseas investors.
On average, green and sustainability sukuk generated order books worth 4.4 times their offering values, compared with 3.3 times for comparably sampled traditional sukuk.
The report recommends promoting common regional and international standards, developing capacity with issuers, and expanding the wider ecosystem.
Omar Shaikh, Advisory Board Member & Director, Islamic Finance Council UK (UKIFC), commented: “We are pleased the HLWG has filed its first report which finds that despite the increase in the issuance of green and sustainability sukuk, there is scope for greater capacity building across issuers, investors and professional services to scale the market to serve the Islamic world.”
Shrey Kohli, Head of Debt Capital Markets, London Stock Exchange, and Chair of the HLWG on Green and Sustainability Sukuk, said: “The growth of green and sustainability sukuk will enable more countries and companies to access finance in a manner consistent with their faith and values. As sukuk are linked to assets that may be eligible for green and social projects, they will become vital tools to fund the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals and the just transition to net-zero, as has been evidenced by transactions by Working Group members such as the Islamic Development Bank and Etihad Airlines.”
“I sincerely thank all members of the HLWG for their expertise and insights. We look forward to working with the market to implement the recommendations as head towards the next two COPs in Egypt and the United Arab Emirates.”
Mustafa Adil, Head of Islamic Finance, Data & Analytics, LSEG, said: “This July marked five years since the first green sukuk was issued, raising $58 million. Green and sustainability sukuk have made great strides during this time, gaining traction across several Islamic capital markets in Southeast Asia, the GCC and Africa, with cumulative total issuance amounting to $21 billion by the first half of 2022.”
“As we approach COP27, it is our aim this report will inform and encourage more countries to adopt green and sustainability sukuk as an innovative approach for financing their SDGs and sustainable development plans.”
LSEG is well placed at the heart of global capital markets to be a strategic enabler of sustainable economic growth. It plays an important role in accelerating the transition to net zero and supporting the growth of the green economy. Refinitiv, an LSEG business, provides an exclusive Islamic finance database including over 1,500 Islamic financial institutions data covering $4 trillion Islamic finance assets. The London Stock Exchange’s Sustainable Bond Market (SBM) is home to more than 300 green, social, and sustainability bonds, raising a combined £120 billion.
According to statistics by J.P. Morgan and Real Capital Analytics, the commercial real estate market is booming, multifamily vacancies are at a record low of 4.7%, and sales of commercial properties recorded a 56% year-over-year growth in Q1 2022.
And, if there is something that has made this growth possible, that is the availability of new technologies and innovative solutions that support the timely and cost-efficient delivery of real estate projects. Learn the impact that technology is having on the CRE sector in the guide below.
Understanding More About Commercial Real Estate Technologies
While the commercial real estate sector is undeniably thriving, reports indicate that there is a shortage of 2 to 5 million units. And, this gap has placed real estate developers and property management companies under unprecedented pressure.
However, thanks to emerging technologies, real estate developers are now able to automate several aspects of their operations, gather real-time and accurate data, visualize the finished product, and maximize cost efficiency.
Since commercial real estate technology is transforming the industry at lightning speed, it is crucial for all developers to learn more about it and keep on top of emerging trends.
BIM and 3D Modelling Supports All Stages of Real Estate Projects
Building Information Modelling (BIM) and data-rich 3D models are playing a critical role in the digital transformation the real estate industry is undergoing today.
These systems, which employ technologies such as CAD software and cloud computing, are powerful visualization tools that developers can use to obtain more accurate estimations of the costs, challenges, and risks of a real estate development project during its pre-construction phase.
In turn, developers can avoid costly mistakes and revisions at later stages of the construction process, which can delay the completion of the project.
VR and Augmented Reality Boost Buyer Confidence
Due to the shortage of commercial and residential units, a growing percentage of properties are sold off-plan – or even before the building is constructed. For developers seeking funds through this strategy, the ability to close deals before investing in a new construction project may be critical.
Nonetheless, according to reports by Fannie Mae, confidence levels among property buyers are dipping to an all-time low.
Luckily, new visualization technologies such as VR and augmented reality can deliver an unprecedented amount of data about a certain building before it’s constructed. This means that developers and potential buyers can visualize the property’s value, quality, timelines, costs, and schedules from the pre-construction stage or earlier.
New Software Facilitates Property and Facilities Management
Facilities and property management software allow developers to effortlessly manage more than one product at once while also automating aspects such as keeping up with compliance, handling complaints, and finding new tenants.
NFT and the Metaverse Can Streamline Real Estate Sales
It isn’t a secret that real estate transactions are cumbersome, highly bureaucratic, and prone to human error. However, emerging technologies such as NFTs and the Metaverse can streamline commercial property sales by supporting immediate, secure, and immutable transactions.
Indeed, these solutions are based on blockchain technology, which is revolutionizing many aspects of real estate thanks to its properties. Blockchain transactions are not only impossible to be tampered with, but they also provide privacy and security to the parties involved in the transaction.
Big Data is Enabling Smarter Business Decision-Making
CRM systems, coupled with property and facilities management solutions, allow developers to capture an unprecedented amount of market insights. This data is not only far more accurate and current than it has ever been, but it is also easily accessible and can be used in real-time.
This means that developers can get immediate access to reliable market insights, better understand the needs of clients and buyers, and mitigate risk.
While these technologies have already left a significant mark on today’s real estate industry, new, cutting-edge solutions are just around the corner. So, it has never been more important for developers to keep up with the latest trends in the market.
In 2022, the war on cybercrime is continuing as criminals get savvier and continue to seek new ways to exploit businesses and the public online. Back in 2016, we noted here at Acquisition International that cybercrime was a looming threat. It’s therefore no surprise to our loyal readers that the fight against bad online actors continues.
With this in mind, how can you respond as a business owner or a high-level manager? There are a number of relatively simple steps you can take to protect your employees, business, and consumers.
Utilise digital tools
There is a wide range of different digital tools out there that can be used to effectively root out cybercrime and fraud, as well as prevent them from happening. For example, seon.io’s software can identify a user’s IP, which can give companies valuable information on where a user is located, if they have been blacklisted, or if there is something suspicious going on.
By identifying the IP, a merchant can decide whether they want to proceed with the transaction or whether more information is required from the user. There are also other tools that analyse transactions and can flag any that seem out of character for a user or exhibit an unusual pattern of behaviour. These tools and many others utilise big data, AI, machine learning and even the IoT to crack down on cybercrime, particularly fraud.
Educate yourself and your team
One of your best lines of defence in the fight against cybercrime is awareness, according to the following article from Chubb. If you empower your employees with the knowledge they need to identify suspicious behaviour, criminal activity, and unusual behaviour, they will be able to respond to issues in a much more efficient manner. Additionally, you need to maintain a general awareness of all risks and trends regarding cybercrime to react at a decision-maker level quickly and without jeopardising further damage to the company. This education can take the form of courses and qualifications, online webinars, in-person talks, reading, audio, video, or sessions with cyber professionals. In terms of keeping up to date, you can include updates and things to be aware of in periodic communications to employees, along with resources so they can continue their research on their own accord.
When it comes to developing your staff’s knowledge, you can start with essential guides such as flagging suspicious emails, not clicking on unusual ads and links, ensuring websites are trustworthy before entering credentials, and limiting the use of company networks while using public wi-fi networks. This can then be developed into more technical and sector-specific guidance, depending on their needs and your business challenges.
But it is essential to ensure you stay up to date. The world of cybercrime changes incredibly quickly, and criminals are always looking for ways to circumvent the system and find new ways to exploit vulnerabilities. This means that the education process should be ongoing, including for you and your team.
Collect and evaluate security logs
The information and data contained in your security logs are a great tool at your disposal. A great best practice for you to adopt is to collect them and ensure they are thoroughly analysed to identify any suspicious activities. Looking at the information in these logs is an excellent way for your to spot untoward things that are happening, including logins, application executions, activity during non-business hours, and PsExec executions, which could all highlight something is wrong. Using these logs is valuable not just in terms of identifying cybercrime but when trying to catch perpetrators, compile evidence, and develop processes and measures to prevent it from happening again.
Keep patches up to date
You can have all the best tools, software, and digital solutions to protect you from fraud and cybercrime, but if you don’t keep them up to date, they are useless. Your IT team needs to stay on top of all updates and patches to be sure that the software will be as effective as possible. Cybercriminals and hackers will often seek to exploit vulnerabilities in systems, and when they do, the developer must close that loop. If you do not stay up to date with these matters, it gives nefarious actors an open door into your precious network, system, and company.
Practice good password habits
When was the last time you changed your password? When was the last time your employees changed their passwords? The answer is likely, not long ago, and no idea. It is extremely important to get into the habit of practising good password habits, as CNET notes. This should include choosing a completely unique password by means of a random password generator. It should consist of upper and lower case characters, numbers, and symbols and should not be any kind of word that is easy to guess. Employees should not reuse passwords between platforms and should change them every few months. You can set up internal reminders on choosing passwords and when to change them to help your employees remember to do so. It might even be possible for some systems to trigger password changes automatically after a certain time frame has elapsed.
Restrict unapproved app installations
Downloading unauthorised programs or applications can be a significant hazard for companies as many can include malware or other forms of viruses. The employee may not even realise their system has been compromised until it is too late. These viruses can spy, delete data, download sensitive information, and generally cause havoc, bringing essential systems and networks to a standstill. Many companies will put a ban on downloading anything without permission from the IT department or use powerful anti-virus services like Norton that pre-installed on desktops to prevent malicious cases from occurring. In many cases, this can be set automatically, with a popup appearing and preventing any downloads from happening. But you should also urge employees to be careful with downloading apps on their phones, mainly if they use them for work communications and other purposes.
Have a backup and recovery plan
Having a backup of all systems that are refreshed regularly is essential. Furthermore, this should accompany a full recovery plan that kicks in if something goes wrong. If your system is compromised somehow, you do not want to risk losing everything; therefore, backing up all data, settings, and systems daily is vital. Then, should something go wrong, you simply revert to the most recent backup, limiting the damage and being able to return to operations with minimal interference. Ensuring this plan and the backup system are in place will save you time and money, as well as protect your business interests.
Standard operating procedures (SOPs) are a part of every organization. SOPs are processes that outline the procedure of performing a task. SOPs allow companies to hire anyone with the right qualifications as they can do the job as long as they follow the standard procedure.
Standard operating procedures are valuable tools for streamlining tasks and ensuring efficiency.
On the other hand, some SOPs can become rigid and slow, especially if other firms develop better processes for doing a task. Certain strategies can transform your SOPs and make them more proactive and productive:
Make SOPs Searchable
The SOP manual at many firms is a thick leaflet with hundreds of pages. Some employees spend up to two hours a day looking up company information.
Most employees prefer shorter SOPs and would like to access them whenever necessary quickly. Therefore, consider using certain tools like Solarwinds that you can find at this page to make your firm’s standard operating procedures searchable.
Employees can search for the SOPs they need to use for a particular task and do so efficiently instead of perusing the entire SOP manual. It will save time and ensure they can focus on more critical tasks.
Putting SOPs In A Central Location
When writing SOPs, you should ensure that all who use them can access them, and the best way to do that is to put them in a central location.
Unfortunately, most companies only give their employees Standard Operating Procedures during employee orientation, and that is it.
Even if they were to glue them against the wall, they would quickly become damaged. The best solution is to use certain tools to ensure that the SOPs are in a central location, particularly a digital one, where anyone can access them.
Cloud storage is an excellent idea as the SOP manual will be accessible by anyone with access to the cloud, but it will also be secure.
Use A SOP Template
An SOP manual contains thousands of minute details, which can be time-consuming and cumbersome to create depending on your organization’s size, industry, and scope of operations. Moreover, you may have to create different SOPs for different organizational roles.
It would be better to build on the work of your predecessors. Therefore, consider using an SOP template to create SOPs productively.
The template is an excellent starting point for organizing and describing various tasks. You can find different templates that provide you with different ways to craft SOPs. Find the best way for your company and use the suitable template.
Develop A Distribution and Training Plan
A standard operating procedure should not be left abandoned in a drawer, on a shelf, or a hidden file on a computer. For SOPs to work best, you should regularly remind employees of them, which you can do by instilling this in your company’s mission and vision.
You can use it to develop a distribution plan which enables employees to see the SOPs as often as possible.
You can also develop a training plan which every member of the organisation can use when joining and can be adapted to them. Such a plan ensures that employees are constantly aware of the correct procedures, which increases their chances of using them.
When you improve your SOPs, you can easily use the platform to distribute the new SOPs as opposed to printing thousands of pages of manuals and sending them manually to employees.
Certain software can help you take a proactive approach by implementing regular retraining, which is particularly important for high-liability areas or areas where the standards and regulations change often.
Drafting and maintaining optimal standard operating procedures is a daunting challenge. The ways above are ways you can help make your SOPs more proactive and productive. Test them and see the results they have on your organisation.
No matter what your organisation does, one thing is for sure: it executes hundreds of processes daily. For example, if you work in Finance, there are specific processes related to your market. Moreover, each department inside your organisation runs different processes: HR, Customer Success, Sales, Administration, etc. So the question is: are they being done as efficiently as you need them to be?
What is business process automation?
Let’s start by defining what is a “business process”. It’s the series of activities that must happen to achieve your organisation’s objectives. For example: when an employee requests time off from work. First, they usually need to speak to their supervisor, then to the HR department, which needs to be approved or denied. Then, the decision must be communicated to the employee. Now, imagine if you could automate most of those tasks instead of doing them manually.
Business process automation is replacing the manual execution of tasks with a BPM software that automates them for you. It may sound complicated or too “tech,” but it is incredibly simple. For example, a cloud BPM software that is low-code / no-code allows you to model, design, and execute your processes without knowing anything about coding or programming.
How to automate your processes:
Define the process:
What process will you automate first? Once you make this decision, define each task that it involves. It basically means knowing who does what, and in what order.
Model the process:
Once you know the tasks that you need to execute in order to carry on the process, you need to define it visually by creating the workflow needed. Here is an example of the workflow for a reimbursement request process:
An employee completes a public form detailing what they need to reimburse. An email with the information is sent to the person in charge of revising it. This person has to decide to approve the request, ask for more information, or reject it. Once a decision is made, it automatically sends an email to the employee notifying the decision. If the decision is to reimburse, it creates a task for the employee in charge to carry out this action.
After modelling the workflow, the process is ready to go! Just launch it with a simple click and start making decisions.
Monitoring and improving the process:
Make sure everything is running smoothly, and figure out quickly if it has any bottlenecks. You can introduce changes and improvements anytime.
Benefits of business process automation:
Automating your processes means digitalising your organisation, and taking this step results in numerous benefits:
Optimise internal management, and achieve greater productivity and efficiency by automating repetitive tasks. By using BPM software, you can automate tasks that one person previously handled but could actually be done automatically.
Monitoring: By automating your processes, you can access real-time information on each process, providing complete traceability.
Save time and money: By automating processes previously done manually, you save on resources. Stationery and printing, transfers between offices, waiting times, storage, and preservation of paper will no longer be necessary.
Obtain customized reports: Get daily and historical reports. Use the valuable data to evaluate the performance of your processes and make the necessary decisions with agility, without the need for analytical tools.
Be scalable: You can be sure that every one of your processes will execute as you planned them. Moreover, integrations between systems reduce human errors. Let your team focus on the tasks they really need to execute and not on repetitive tasks that can be automated.
Now is the time to digitalise your organisation. As you have learned, starting by automating your business processes is a simple and beneficial place to start!
Italian dual citizenship is trending because the country has immense benefits for immigrants. Relocation to Italy opens up an incredible lifestyle where you get quality education, excellent healthcare, and opportunities to work in business or profession. You also get one of the most powerful second passports that enables you to travel visa-free across the EU and many other parts of the world. The dual citizenship process is complicated for a novice, but you can get a consultation on Dual Italian Citizenship on mbersanilaw.com for a smooth start. Let us explain why legal guidance from an expert is a must-have for aspiring immigrants.
Seek assistance in choosing the apt route
The good thing about Italian dual citizenship is that you have a choice of several routes to get into the country as a citizen. But the availability of different alternatives may overwhelm you regarding your eligibility. For example, you may qualify through your ancestral roots (descent), marital connection (marriage), or an extended stay as a resident (naturalization). Some aspirants may be eligible for two routes, such as in the case of having ancestral roots in Italy and marrying an Italian. An expert who knows immigration laws well enough can help you pick the apt alternative for the easiest access to a second passport.
Sort your paperwork
Whichever citizenship route you qualify for, you may find yourself dealing with extensive and complex documentary requirements. The descent route is perhaps the trickiest in this context because it requires documents like your ancestor’s birth, death, and marriage certificates from their local commune. Imagine the pain of procuring decades-old papers from a small comune in a different part of the world. You may have to spend a hefty amount on traveling to Italy and still not get your hands on the papers. A local legal specialist has the right connections to ease the task. They can also guide you about the translation and legalization of non-Italian documents to make them valid for the citizenship process.
Get guidance with the citizenship process
Italy is one of the easiest countries to immigrate to, but you cannot take the simplicity of the citizenship process for granted. You still need to follow several steps and wait for years to get a second passport. The extended queues at the consulate can get on your nerves. The wait gets longer if you make an error or omission in the documents or miss a step somewhere. A seasoned citizenship lawyer offers helpful guidance throughout the process, ensuring the timely completion of formalities without anything being amiss. You can focus on other aspects of relocation and be confident about closing the process sooner than later.
Moving to Italy is a ticket to a dream life for yourself and your loved ones. The dual citizenship option is the best one for aspiring immigrants. However, you cannot expect the process to be a breeze because it entails several steps. An expert can show the way and make it less challenging despite the stringent rules and requirements. You should look for a reliable one for the best guidance.
Most of us take it for granted these days, but the rate of technological change in the past decade or more is astonishing. Super-fast internet, cloud storage, video streaming; just imagine what things will be like a decade from now.
The development of new tech has particularly impacted the business world, bringing both opportunities and threats to SMEs and major corporations alike.
Accountancy is one area that has changed beyond recognition during the digital revolution. Key functions like tax reporting, forecasting, and making/receiving payments have now moved online, and are backed by the latest developments in software and fintech.
If you are an aspiring accountant, you need to be up-to-date with the changes that will shape the next generation of accountancy. If you own a start-up company or established firm, you should know how accounting has changed in an increasingly uncertain business world.
So, here are some insights to consider right now and for the years ahead.
Making Tax Digital
One of the most significant changes for businesses in the UK to ensure they are tax compliant is adhering to HMRC’s new digital filing systems.
Making Tax Digital, or MTD as it is often known, is legislation that relates to how businesses file their tax returns. As of the start of November 2022, all firms must switch to official MTD filing instead of using their current online VAT accounting method and keep comprehensive records of their VAT and corporation tax to satisfy the requirements.
All VAT-registered companies must conform to Making Tax Digital requirements (barring those specifically excluded) regardless of whether they cross the old VAT threshold. The easiest way of meeting the rules is to utilise MTD-specific accounting software.
You will need to register for MTD if you haven’t already, and there’s plenty of information about that online if you are unsure.
Analysis & forecasting
The current economic conditions around the world, and specifically in the UK, are such that many businesses face uncertainty and unpredictability.
There’s only so much that you can do to prepare for those unknown eventualities. However, by analysing your current financial position – and using digital tools to help forecast the weeks and months ahead – you will at least have some context for your decision-making.
Accounting software packages offer a range of features that let you analyse past data and take decisions based on that. There are training courses available that offer an insight into data analysis and forecasting, while many specialist accountancy firms can help with this. This can help owners and CEOs to make the most informed choices for their business.
Financial analysis is nothing new, but the tools and software packages that the digital revolution has afforded business owners ensure you can make smarter decisions – vital in these challenging economic times.
It’s incredible to think now, but accounting was once carried out manually with paper and pen, with accounts filed in an old-fashioned set of folders.
It required an amazing amount of work, so moving accountancy online has saved time and hassle and helped minimise the errors that can creep in when working with high volumes of numbers, especially when there are filing deadlines to satisfy.
Accounting software has helped to create efficiencies for businesses of all sizes, while the increased implementation of fintech has armed company owners with various tools to help run their day-to-day business; be it cloud storage – ensuring around-the-clock access to essential accounting info – or faster, more secure payment mechanisms.
Even the ‘grassroots’ of accounting, such as data collection and entry, has been enhanced by automation tools and artificial intelligence, which has helped to minimise the mistakes of incorrect invoicing or inaccurate reporting.
It has created a greater synergy between company directors and their accountancy staff – in-house employees or an external firm – and their efficiency gains that can help businesses save money and make better, more informed decisions and with one eye on the future.
For anyone planning on a career in accountancy, it’s vital that you are comfortable using these new technologies. Whether managing accounts via the latest software, sharing data analysis through the cloud or sitting in on planning and forecasting meetings, your connections with your clients are required to be stronger than ever before.
These are exciting times for the accountancy profession – even at this moment in history where economic uncertainty reigns.
These are exciting times for the accountancy profession – even at this moment in history where economic uncertainty reigns.
Social media has become a vital part of online business success. All industries nowadays belong equally to the virtual and the real world; through social media, companies can directly interact with customers on several online platforms and form a relationship by engaging in conversations and sharing content.
The overwhelming process of managing targeted promotional campaigns on social media might be intimidating; however, if done properly, it could pave the way for a profitable and reputable business.
The following are the top tips for promoting a business on social media platforms:
Prepare your business to go on social media
First and foremost, launching your business on social media needs to be appealing, and it should come out with a visual identity. Thanks to technology, many applications are there, for example, a logo maker application makes it easy to design an outstanding logo and helps people recognize and remember a brand. Also, branding colours play a role in building a long-lasting brand identity. Overall, good employment of online applications will make the business’s soon-to-be presence memorable.
Choose the right platforms
A platform is where a business is going to spread and flourish. Therefore, a better understanding of the available platforms, their audience, and their goals will lead a brand toward a matching platform. As a result, attracting and reaching the target audience is possible.
While YouTube is a reasonable choice for a video production company, Instagram, Pinterest, or Facebook, on the other hand, can easily promote a fashion brand. In the end, research the platform that best fits your industry to move your business forward.
Remember that you can combine several platforms simultaneously and diversify your promotional materials like videos, photos, podcasts, and written content.
Create a calendar
A business’s presence on social media should be planned and organized; randomly posted content will only disorient the audience. Moreover, preserving the integrity of a brand’s public image requires using a regular calendar for each platform. Eventually, a calendar is not only going to regulate posts but also meet set goals and strategies.
A greater engagement generates a bigger reach. We can increase engagement by using the different advertisement tools available on the platforms. For example, since Instagram stories are popular, a good Instagram story maker will spice up your business page and keep the audience on the hook by interacting with catchy story content.
Do not over promote
In most cases, mixing regular advertisement with social media promotion is a common mistake. Unlike traditional ads, experts’ advice says to follow the one-in-seven role on social media, which means a business can have one direct promotional post after posting six content-based posts. In this case, the promotion message will reach the targeted audience without exaggeration. Overall, over-promotion is a trap a business can easily avoid with a neat posting calendar and proper planning.
Visual content, especially videos, could quickly capture the audience’s attention. A short video can deliver a brand’s message and grab an audience’s attention in a better way than a post does. Dedicating time and effort to create innovative videos with captivating content will pay off later. Taking benefit of the growing popularity of Instagram reels, Facebook stories or YouTube shorts are also effective. Eventually, as a business owner, tools and audience are available on the platform; the rest is up to you.
Address problems quickly
Being responsive will not only get a business a good reputation but will smoothly solve problems ahead. Negative feedback – though unwanted- is inevitable. Therefore, dealing with it quickly by addressing whoever is complaining privately and apologizing in public would seem like dodging a bullet for a business while also polishing the public image.
Surprisingly, it is not the number of followers that matters. Interaction with each other, interest, and loyalty matter most. As a result, such a small community will participate in the future promotion process. On the other hand, a business page should always be welcoming to build a community around it, so engaging with the audience by greeting new members and CTAs (Call To Action) should be at the top of the to-do list of a business page admin. In brief, building a community on social media has two primary elements: a willing-to-grow business and the right audience to target.
Many people want to have a business they can call their own. However, building one from scratch is not easy. Because of this, many entrepreneurs are choosing to buy an existing business. But buying an existing business is not as easy as buying a used car. You must take the proper steps to ensure you get the most out of your investment. So, here are the first steps to take in company acquisition.
1. Why Do you want to Undertake an Acquisition?
Before you acquire a business and spend money, you must first establish why you are doing so. What are your motivations for buying a new company? In most cases, entrepreneurs who purchase a new business will do so because they want to expand the existing business. But your reasons should be more specific.
Buying an existing business comes with many benefits. For one, it eliminates the hassles in setting up a business from scratch, such as developing new products, building a solid customer base, and hiring staff. You also won’t have to go through the challenges during the crucial early years when many new businesses often fail.
The most common motives for acquiring a new business are diversification, R&D/Patents, leverage, transformation, scope and scale. Find out which among these drivers are your motives behind buying a new venture. Regardless of your reasons, be honest with yourself about your motives. Otherwise, you could acquire the wrong business, which could lead to many problems down the line.
2. Make Sure you Have a Strong Team
So, you are eager to push through with your plan to buy a new company. But before you do so, there are things you must do, and one of these is to have a solid team. There has to be a working group in your company with representatives from every business department. They must be able to work together and communicate well with each other.
Developing a team is not only about finding a group of people having the right mix of professional skills. You must have a strong team who are goal-oriented and share the same company values. No matter how good your business might be, it cannot prosper without a dynamic team working cohesively towards achieving a shared business goal. When hiring new employees, set expectations from day one. Set ground rules and let everyone know about your expectations for the team, not only in the short term but also in the long term.
Encourage every team member to exhibit respect towards one another. They should see one another as a business partner who will work with them towards achieving a shared business goal, and not just someone sitting at a desk beside them. Invest in employee training and online courses as it can help ensure that the team is ready to undergo the acquisition.
3. Do Your Research
When acquiring a new company, you must do your homework by gathering data and insights on your potential business venture. Do your research about growth opportunities, competitive landscapes, market trends, technology advancements, etc. The most successful business acquisitions involve market research, aside from the usual due diligence.
When doing your research, identify areas for possible expansion and find out how to expand your current offering. For instance, you can research changing market trends due to new construction projects, increasing levels of education, and other changes that will bring in new opportunities for the business.
Use the data gathered from your market research to develop new and effective strategies. For instance, see how you can improve the distribution channels and marketing mediums and find out if there are any opportunities to introduce a new product in the market. All these can help you make more informed decisions for your newly acquired business venture.
4. Know Your Business Finances
As the buyer, you have every right to know the financial standing of the business you plan to buy. Ask for a copy of the financial statement and ensure that it is prepared according to the generally accepted accounting principles and that the selling company is fairly presenting the company’s financial condition, results of business operations, and cash flows over the specific periods indicated.
Getting into the financial aspects is one of the most important steps to acquiring a new business. Consider hiring good payroll employees who can help review the seller’s business and assess the key financial indicators, which include profits, sales, expenses, debts, and cash flow. They can also identify any potential red flags and irregularities.
When reviewing the financial statements, one aspect to think about is the accounts receivable. If there are customers who still owe the seller some money during the closing date, find out who will be responsible for paying the overdue debts. Decide whether to buy the accounts receivable or let the seller collect them.
5. Do a Due Diligence
Before you purchase the business, you must know what you will get from the deal by performing due diligence. It means conducting thorough research to confirm that you are buying what you expect and not getting something you don’t want. Hire someone who can assess the value of the business and determine whether you should proceed with the purchase.
During due diligence, gather as much information about the business and determine what’s necessary to make an informed decision. There are various areas of due diligence to explore – business license, reputation, industry-specific research, etc. It also involves conducting an audit to confirm the relevant facts and financial information. Verify anything else that was discussed during the business deal.
Business acquisitions that go through a process of due diligence offer a higher chance of success. Due diligence helps the buyer make informed decisions by verifying the available information. It also gives assurance that their expectations about the transactions are factual. While due diligence may be costly and time-consuming, these are justifiable expenses compared to the risks of failing to conduct proper due diligence.
Maxim Manturov, Head of Investment Advice at Freedom Finance Europe explores the misunderstanding facing the 5G market, its uses and potential value to investors
The 5G market is projected to be worth $65 billion (£53.6 billion) by 2026, and by 2024, there will be over a billion global 5G subscribers. While the 5G sector has been impacted by scepticism after years of hype, there is likely to be a new phase of competition in niche 5G strategies and local markets as major telecoms companies forecast significant prospects for the mass market.
Public networks are not yet capable of delivering the ultra-high speeds and short latency that 5G promises, and as a result, the industry is trending towards private networks. However, as leaders of cutting edge technology and solutions, telcos are looking to the future – and at the significant potential of creating 5G networks for the public.
Across the globe, telecoms companies and governments alike are looking at ways to introduce effective 5G solutions into their existing infrastructure or creating new options. Currently, China is the current leader in 5G capabilities. As of Q1 2022, 5G coverage by number of subscribers is highest in Hong Kong, according to OpenSignal. However, by 2025, it is expected that half of major Western European countries will have access to 5G.
Telecoms companies to watch
There are a number of telecom companies globally that are scaling up 5G operations and as a result, are likely to attract investment. Companies among the top 10 patent holders of 5G technology, including Huawei (13.5%), Qualcomm (10%), Samsung Electronics (10%), ZTE (9.8%) and LG (9%) are also worth taking note of. Huawei (#002502) is in fact leading the way with the greatest number of 5G technology patent applications, with an overall share of 13.5%, versus Intel, which is at the bottom of the list with 1.47%.
Huawei reported that revenue for the first half of 2022 fell 5.9% year-on-year to 301.6 billion yuan ($44.8 billion) and net profit margin fell to 5% from 9.8% a year ago. However, Huawei’s 5G business segment is showing strong growth even in overseas markets. The company has signed more than 5,000 5G commercial contracts in its home market, Hungary, Thailand, South Africa, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, to help companies build 5G infrastructure.
Indian telecoms company Reliance Jio, whose investors include Facebook and Google, spent $11 billion (£9.9 billion) in a 5G spectrum auction, beating out competitors in a race to dominate next-generation digital services in the country of 1.4 billion people.
Reliance Jio has around 400 million subscribers and a 37% market share, according to analysts at Jefferies. Taking the lead in the 5G race will only strengthen the company’s position and create additional growth opportunities. The company’s chairman Mukesh Ambani has announced that he will be making a gift to the nation in the form of launching Jio’s 5G network in key cities, including in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata, for Diwali. By December 2023, the company plans to have 5G network coverage across India.
The current state of play
According to Ericsson, the number of mobile 5G users worldwide was 217 million in 2020, 664 million in 2021, could reach 1.2 billion in 2022 and 4.4 billion by 2027.
In the current challenging global environment, with economies slowing and recession looming, 5G technology will grow and be widely deployed. When applied on a large scale in the manufacturing sector, 5G will further the growth of smart operations and Internet of Things (IoT) solutions that can significantly reduce energy and people power consumption.
It’s also likely that 5G will make an impact in the healthcare and telemedicine sectors. For example, in China, 70% of patients have to travel to cities from nearby provinces to access quality healthcare. 5G can make it easier for people who are less mobile to interact with their physicians. The concept of smart cities may also be realised with the full-scale implementation of 5G, vastly improving connectivity to benefit people in cities both on foot and in transit.
While a great deal of investment is needed to realise the potential of 5G on a global scale, it is highly likely that the key telecom industry players will be the ones to realise this – unlocking potential for individuals and investors everywhere.
Choosing to become a funded trader or sole trader, can affect your journey in the financial market, what type of opportunities are presented to you, and your ability to take advantage of them. Each option has its fair share of pros and cons, and deciding which is best for you is one of the decisions experienced, and new traders must make.
Before you make that decision, here’s what you need to know about both options.
What is Solo Trading
Solo traders are people who fully control their trading accounts and run them as individuals. A sole trader is largely independent, and it is a path taken by a lot of forex and stock traders.
There are many successful sole traders, and becoming one is simple. To become a sole trader, find a suitable trading platform that offers you several trading options and sign up. You can start with demo trading if you have no experience or make a deposit in your trading account and begin trading as soon as possible.
What to Consider When Becoming a Sole Trader
Here are some requirements for being a successful sole trader
Education Continuous learning is essential for growth as a sole trader. It helps you to build on your capital and increases the opportunities presented to you in the market. Look for a means to earn relevant certification and search for a trading platform that gives you access to relevant news and resources to help you succeed.
Risk management parameters For funded traders, the prop firm may set risk management requirements to follow, but a sole trader is responsible for that decision. Before actively trading, it is necessary to do your research to determine your preferred risk management tools, take profit targets, and stop loss levels.
Portfolio management Invest capital you are comfortable risking and set realistic expectations for your trading journey. When starting, investing 20% or less of your initial capital on a particular asset is preferable. In addition, solo traders must define their trading strategy and perform extensive backtesting to perfect it.
Funded trading requires you to trade on behalf of a company. With a funded trading account, the company provides you with enough capital, purchasing power, and leverage to take significant advantage of the financial market.
Becoming a funded trader is a goal for some experienced traders because they can easily make profits in the world’s most profitable financial markets, and it can act as a primary source of equity. There is typically an agreement regarding the profit distribution between the trader and the proprietary firm.
There are various types of funded accounts depending on the financial instrument you are handling. For instance, forex traders have a chance to test their skills against the largest financial market in the world with a funded forex account. If you are an options or futures trader, some proprietary firms provide funded accounts that cater to those instruments.
What to Consider When Becoming a Funded Trader
Becoming a prop trader might seem like a big hassle and too difficult. However, according to experts at Howtotrade.com, becoming a prop trader is now more accessible and inexpensive than ever before.
A prop trader should look out for this before joining a trading firm:
Opportunity to Scale
After the first evaluation, funded traders are given an initial capital of up to $50,000. If the trader can consistently make profits, there should be a system to enable the trader to grow their account size by having access to more capital.
Finding a prop trading firm that gives a monthly income is rare, but some do. The offer is made to help the trader focus more on their trading success while their basic needs are covered.
If you are interested in earning a base salary, applying to big prop trading firms is advisable. However, doing this may affect your profit agreement with the company and require you to work from an office rather than remotely.
Credibility and Reputation of the Platform Take time to look for a prop trading firm with a good reputation among other traders. Look out for reviews on sites like Trustpilot and read the terms and conditions before applying.
Funded Trading v Solo Trading
The differences between solo trading and funded trading include:
1. Freedom to Trade
Solo traders don’t answer to anyone but themselves. They are in charge of developing their strategy, doing their own research, and managing every aspect of their trading account. Solo traders only have to follow the general rules and regulations set by the company regarding trading activities.
Funded traders have to answer to the company they are trading for. They must follow certain rules and regulations since they are not trading their own money. These rules will outline the payment policies, business practices, and risk management practices that apply to the account. Sometimes, the terms and conditions can be changed at the company’s discretion.
When becoming a funded trader, it is advisable to remain aware of the firm’s terms and conditions regarding the funded account. If you are a new trader, reach out to other funded traders using the platform to get an idea of what you should expect from them. So, read the fine print when considering a prop firm to determine if it is in line with your trading strategy and profit target.
2. Access to Funds
Solo traders are mostly limited to their initial capital and may find it hard to secure extra capital, especially when starting out. The limit of their capital can affect their strategy and the amount of profit they can make while trading. But as they become more experienced and successful, solo traders can use the leverage provided by the broker to increase their position in the market.
With funded trading, traders don’t have to worry about risking their own money because they will receive all the capital they need. The capital at your disposal enables you to experience exponential growth at a level you might not get if you are trading with your own account. Your profits are greatly increased, and your experience grows along with it.
3. Ease of Application
Becoming a sole trader is relatively straightforward and fast. You will have to provide some personal information, find your account, and start trading. Nowadays, becoming a prop trader is easy because of the various trading platforms providing these services to traders. But there are several steps in the process of getting a funded account.
First, an interested trader will have to apply for a funded trading program by filling out a form. Typically, you will be asked about your background, trading experience, and educational level. Some would require you to take an interview to discuss your preferred market, skills, and trading strategy.
After the interview, traders will have to pass an evaluation challenge and prove they can be profitable. The trader will work with a given set of parameters. For instance, the trader may be required to make a 15% profit over 20 days.
If the challenge is completed successfully, the trader will be awarded a funded account and can start trading. But it doesn’t get there. With a funded account, you are not alone in the process, as the firm may provide training to help you make successful trades.
4. Monthly fee and profits
For solo trading, you will have to pay a commission for executing trades but don’t have to release any profits to the trading firm. On the other hand, most prop trading firms will charge a monthly fee for the service because the traders are using their capital.
The monthly varies from one firm to the other, and some may demand a one-time payment of up to $1000 for acquiring a funded account. Plus, profits will be split between the trading platform and the trader.
It is usually a 50%-50% split, but there are some cases where the company would offer a higher profit percentage to the trader, which is something most traders look out for before applying for a funded account.
Trading with your own capital means that you bear the full risk in the event of your loss. This is why it is important for traders to have a bit of experience before trading full-time, as many traders have lost their capital due to the volatility of the market.
Funded trading protects the trader’s capital from losses. But there might be a limit to it because funded traders are expected to be experienced professional traders who can make steady profits. For instance, the trader may be given a maximum drawdown of 10%, and their participation in the program could be reviewed if they go below that.
If you have a small account but want to expand your position in the market, becoming a funded trader might be the best solution. If you want to be in complete control of your profits and trading activities with enough discipline to learn on your own, solo trading could be the most profitable path for you. The path you choose depends on your goals and capital, and you should take your time to consider which is best for you.
Study highlighted how solutions related to payments and remittances continue to drive the growth of the region’s fintech sector, with lending and open banking growing at a fast pace
Data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) are the top technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution that are powering fintech solutions, found a Mastercard study on the state of fintech in the Middle East and Turkey markets.
The white paper titled ‘The Future of Fintech: Smart, Scalable, Collaborative’ was released during Fintech Surge in GITEX Global 2022, one of the leading technology events in the Middle East. Mastercard is a Strategic Sponsor of Fintech Surge where senior global and regional executives are speaking at multiple panel discussions, fireside chats and presentations.
Announced during a panel discussion, the white paper findings were discussed by industry leaders who highlighted how young, technologically savvy, and informed consumers are driving the trend for fintech products and services across the Middle East and Turkey. The metaverse, AI, 5G, and data analytics are making hyper-personalized experiences possible for consumers, which, in turn, fuel the demand for a 24/7 digital experience.
“The fintech landscape is accelerating at an unprecedented speed to transform economies and the exchange of value. Our study “The Future of Fintech: Smart, Scalable, Collaborative” shows that new players are continuously emerging, their scaling strategies are maturing, and investments are accelerating. Yet, the core mission of fintech companies remains the same – they strive to empower consumers, increase financial access, and help bring the unbanked and underbanked into the digital economy. Mastercard provides the services and tools fintech innovators need to iterate at each stage of their journey, transform bold ideas, and achieve scale at pace to connect more people to the digital economy,” said Ngozi Megwa, Senior Vice President Digital Partners and Enablers, EEMEA, Mastercard.
The study highlighted that fintech are disruptors of the status quo in the pursuit of a better tomorrow. They are agile and able to identify opportunities – often during times of upheaval such as the 2008 financial crisis and COVID-19 pandemic, when the need for innovation is heightened.
The global fintech market was valued at US$112.5 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach US$332.5 billion by 2028, reflecting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.8%. The white paper also revealed that there are more than 470 fintech unicorns globally, with 40 of them added in Q1 2022. The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region alone is expected to have 45 fintech unicorns by 2030, a tenth of global numbers. In Turkey, 2021 was a record year for fintech deals and funding. The highest ever fintech round in Turkey was closed in 2021 and one startup announced its acquisition.
A major reason for this growth, the study found, is the collaborative approach that can lift all boats in the fintech sector of the Middle East and Turkey. The paper goes to say that fintech solutions in these markets work to resolve pain points of consumers and merchants in a very localized framework. For the fintech sector and companies to expand, they need to start operating across borders.
The white paper explored the ecosystem around how fintech can be established, operate and grow. Some of the key findings include:
Fintech startups in MENA recorded huge growth in funding in 2021
Fintech startups in MENA recorded a 183% growth in funding in 2021, the highest yearly growth rate over the past five years. Most of the fintech funding deals (32%) and funding capital (49%) across MENA in 2021 was focused on the UAE.
Regulation of the fintech sector is on the rise
Regulation of the fintech sector in the Middle East and Turkey includes multiple facets, such as payments, remittances, equity crowdfunding, E-money and P2P lending. The UAE has regulations for all the five facets and leads in the region, followed by Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, which regulate four out of the five facets. Egypt and Turkey have regulations in place for three of these facets while Qatar has soft-launched its regulatory sandbox and is planning to have a full launch in the near future. The four areas in focus for Qatar are payments, regtech, Islamic finance, and SMEs.
Regulation, though, is still very localized, as the primary concern of regulators is to protect consumers in their own countries. Very few country regulators have forged collaborative partnerships with their counterparts in neighboring countries, to allow companies from one country to operate seamlessly in the other.
Open banking is seeing increasing consumer acceptance and is transformative in fintech adoption
51% of consumers say faster transactions are the biggest benefit of using open banking. The Mastercard New Payments Index 2022 shows that consumers are using open banking for a variety of tasks, including bill payments, loans, Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) payments, credit score optimization, remittances, saving, trading cryptocurrency, paying off loans, and financial planning, among other things. Over 50% of consumers across the region want to link their accounts to automate payments, because transactions are faster. And almost 50% find it more convenient to track and manage bill payments, to transact between accounts, and for general financial management.
Partnerships with global corporations are important
It becomes very important for fintech companies to get global corporations on board. This enables a fintech company to resolve several cross-border issues related to regulation, payments (making and receiving them), raising funding rounds, among others. Companies like Mastercard are helping fintechs to rapidly scale. It is also important for a fintech to identify the most relevant stakeholders – including making the right connections in the traditional banking sector – to be able to successfully navigate local, regional, and global growth.
When you run a small or enterprise-level business, you face many daily challenges to ensure that it operates smoothly and efficiently. With larger organisations, you can delegate some of your responsibilities. However, the buck will often stop with you, so you still want some insight and oversight into those responsibilities.
Of course, in the modern digital era, many tools and processes can help make things a lot easier. These tools don’t mean you can nip off to the pub early. Still, they can vastly reduce stress and workload and make operations more efficient than before, especially when it comes to using machine learning to identify search intent.
One tool you may already use is enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. One of the significant advantages of ERP software is that there is a long list of ERP modules you can choose to implement according to your needs which can help when creating an efficient data pipeline. How can these different modules help your business? We look at the main list of ERP modules to see what benefits they can bring.
What is ERP?
ERP software is a management tool that allows any size and type of business to manage a range of everyday operations. These can vary from inventory control to accounting. The idea behind ERP software is that it brings together all your main business processes in one place and allows a flow of data between those processes. It can be a crucial cornerstone of any digital transformation strategy.
If you opt for a complete ERP suite, that will include enterprise performance management. This tool lets you oversee financial aspects of your business, from planning and budgeting to predicting financial results to producing financial reports. However, let’s assume you are just embarking on your ERP journey; what is a good list of ERP modules to consider?
What are ERP modules?
ERP modules are components of your ERP package that are designed to carry out specific tasks as part of your overall ERP program. They can automate different tasks while working together so that your ERP is a central repository of all relevant data. By implementing a list of ERP modules that are right for your business, you can see dramatic increases in operational efficiency.
A list of ERP modules to consider in your ERP suite
While ERP systems may differ in basic functions, think of them as a foundation for managing various aspects of your business. Your priorities may vary greatly and could include looking at modules that track and analyse ESG performance data to modules that monitor your supply chain.
An accounting module can be one of your key choices regarding ERP. It can analyze and manage every financial aspect of your business, from your current financial health in real time to predictions of future economic performance over different periods. It can also keep close track of what invoices have been settled, which are still outstanding, and when they are due to be paid.
Finance modules allow you to store all relevant documents, such as any commercial proposal, where they are easily accessible. They can also create those crucial documents, such as tax statements and balance sheets. Your module can automate those repetitive tasks such as monthly billing and settling outgoing payments. With in-depth, real-time analysis, it is simple for your teams to prepare financial reports of any type.
It doesn’t matter whether your business works in manufacturing, wholesale, or retail; you need a regular and reliable supply of goods or raw materials. Any breakdown in that supply chain can cause a bottleneck in your operations, ultimately leading to financial losses.
A procurement module can manage any part of the procurement process. You can use it to create a list of preferred vendors and link them to the products or materials they supply. It can track and analyse quote requests and, when those quotes are agreed, it can pass all info to relevant departments such as your warehouse and can update inventory details when orders are completed.
3. Inventory management
Knowing precisely what your inventory levels are can be a key factor for most businesses. It’s not just a case of knowing how many SKUs (stock-keeping units) you have but where they are located. If you operate in multiple locations, knowing and managing your inventory can be essential when it comes to order fulfillment.
An inventory management module will integrate closely with your procurement module so that you have an accurate, real-time oversight of what’s going out and what’s coming in. It means that you know that you have enough inventory to fulfill orders and that you avoid both over- and understock scenarios. In many cases, you can also use this module to track other factors such as purchase and sales orders as well as dispatched orders.
4. CRM (customer relationship management)
People like personal service, and a CRM module is a perfect way to help give them what they want. This module can store all information about your clients/customers, from previous transaction histories to geographical location. This means that any time there is interaction with customers, your staff can see that historical data and move straight to the reason for the call.
It doesn’t matter how much data you have; you can utilise services such as Azure data lake services so that it’s securely stored, easily accessible, and available for in-depth analytics. This module can greatly benefit leads and sales opportunities as it can help your team see who may be open to marketing or cross-selling.
5. Human resources
A little more advanced than a workforce management module, this is ideal for storing and accessing info on all your staff. It can hold all relevant personal info, such as date of employment commencing, emergency contacts, etc., but also employment history, contracted hours, holidays due, and any disciplinary notes.
HR has always been an area of operations open to human error when using manual data input on spreadsheets. An HR ERP module is an ideal solution on any list of ERP modules as it reduces the chances of inaccuracies and can send all relevant data directly to your finance or payroll department.
If you do any significant level of marketing, then it is worth considering a marketing module. It can help automate a number of your marketing tasks, including running and analysing campaigns across any channels you use, including social media. You can set it up to schedule email marketing and SMS messages to all the customers on your mailing list.
You can also utilise the module’s advanced segmentation options, so that marketing messages are only sent to those customers identified as relevant to that message. Of course, the module will also analyse and report on campaign effectiveness and generate reports so you can see how well your marketing efforts are working. This module can help you generate more leads, boost sales, and increase customer retention and loyalty.
If your organisation is involved in ecommerce, whether B2C or B2B, then a specialised ERP module will offer an ideal solution. It can help you manage any platforms you use to sell products and makes it simple to add new products, update product info and pricing, and can even make it easy to change platform layout if necessary.
As with other modules, the beauty lies in the integration with other modules and your ERP as a whole. You can do this with various different tools or a single solution such as the SageMaker API. This means that all the info and data you would ever need is collected together in a single, easily-accessible database.
When you are a business leader, it can sometimes appear daunting when you look at the wide array of tools, systems, and other resources available to you. From the best product management books to automated systems, how can you choose which ones are most suitable for you and your organisation?
No matter how big your business or the sector you operate in, enterprise resource planning software is something you should consider. Which modules you decide upon depends on your business needs and type, but the ones in our list of ERP modules are perhaps the most commonly used and valuable to most organisations.
It’s not just about making life easier for you and your staff; it’s about increasing accuracy and efficiency while freeing up team members to focus on more critical tasks. When chosen carefully – and implemented properly – you should see dramatic increases in all aspects of your operations as well as better financial performance.
No matter the stage you are at with your business, you might be heading for success and growth. However, for you to achieve your goals and beat the competition ahead, you need to have funds to ensure that your business meets its needs.
Despite how good you might be at running a business, your cash flow might stunt, make, or break the success of your business. This makes funding your small business important when it comes to ensuring that its finances are healthy.
It can help you achieve the goals of your business. However, it is not easy for all small business owners to achieve success with their businesses. Running a business does not just revolve around funding the business.
That notwithstanding, here are a few options for funding your business at whatever stage to help it thrive;
Business grants are one of the ways through which small business owners can get free money to fund their businesses. This is money that does not have to be paid back. Unfortunately, getting business grants is not easy due to high demand.
You can, however, apply for one anytime throughout the year when the opportunity arises. All you have to do is to check grant programs at CFDA (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance). These grant programs are offered by the government.
Checking through these programs, you will easily find out what is required for your business to be eligible. You can also talk to SBDC (Small Business Development Center) or SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) for connections for business grants.
Sometimes, you might find yourself in a situation where you do not have enough working capital. This does not necessarily mean that you should get a loan. Instead, you can use business credit cards to cover things like purchases, monthly bills, and operational costs.
Credit cards provide small business owners with short-term funding, depending on their set monthly limit. This funding, however, has to be paid, whether partially or in full, within the month. Paying the full amount is always good and helps in raising the credit score of your business.
Different financial institutions provide both business and personal credit cards. They all come with different limits and requirements for eligibility. When choosing a credit card provider, make sure that the one you choose meets the requirements of your business.
Crowdfunding platforms provide funds for entrepreneurs who have a business idea but would not like to spend a lot of time going through loan application processes. It allows entrepreneurs to get funds from the public using sites such as Kickstarter and GoFundMe.
These funds can be used to cover business start-up costs or costs of launching a service or a product. However, small business owners need to understand that contributors fund small businesses in exchange for something such as a product or access to a software application.
Contributors might even ask for some equity in your company. The higher the amount of money an individual contributes, the better the reward that they get. You, however, have the option of choosing not to reward anything to those who contribute.
Lines of Credit
Small business owners can fund their businesses through lines of credit. Lines of credit are better than credit cards in that they have lower APRs (Annual Percentage Rates). In addition, they have higher limits compared to credit cards.
Unfortunately, they only last for a couple of years, unlike credit cards which can last for as long as you want. This means that lines of credit are best suited for small business owners with short-term funding requirements.
There are different funding opportunities offered by the federal government specifically for small businesses. Among these, small business owners should look at those coming from CDLF (Community Development Loan Funds) and SBA (Small Business Administration).
SBA loans can be accessed from lending partners such as credit unions and banks. Small business owners can use these loans to increase their working capital and finance the purchase of working equipment.
CDLF loans, on the other hand, are designed for small business owners coming from low-income communities. They are offered through select lenders including banks and non-profit organizations. The lenders are funded by grants or the US government.
As you can see above, there are different options for small business owners to fund their businesses no matter the stage they are at. It is, however, important for them (business owners) to ensure that they are choosing a funding option that meets their requirements as well as those of their businesses.
It’s a mantra that seems almost as old as time itself, but the ‘be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful’ strategy of Warren Buffett has served him well in more than five decades as an investor.
It’s a philosophy that will be tested in the rest of 2022 with international economies facing upheaval caused by the fallout of the pandemic, the beast of inflation and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.
Buffett’s words are treated as gospel by some, and in truth, despite the economic pressures many countries are facing, now might be as good a time as any to consider trading foreign currencies – volatility, after all, does not exclusively have to be a bad thing.
The situation in the Ukraine is forcing energy prices up for many countries around the world; however, it’s those that rely heavily on gas that have been the worst hit.
According to the International Monetary Fund, the UK has been the hardest hit anywhere in Western Europe in terms of energy bill increases, and one of the implications of that – allied to chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s surprising decision to offer tax cuts to one and all – is that the value of Pound Sterling has plummeted.
Meanwhile, the US Dollar is performing much better than expected, and while there are reasons – both economic and somewhat artificial – for that, for forex traders it’s essential that you understand the nuances of how energy price changes are impacting one nation to the next.
International Trade Deals
As times get tough, it’s commonplace that national leaders will look to consolidate by striking international trade deals.
These can, naturally, have a knock-on effect to the value of currency pairs, although traders eyeing the big fish – a deal between the UK and the USA – may be disappointed after newly anointed prime minister Liz Truss said that such an agreement was ‘unlikely’.
Such deals have been in short supply for the UK since the Brexit split from the European Union but talks over a pan-Asian trade agreement between the USA and 13 countries including Japan, South Korea and India continue at pace. That could be a situation for forex traders to keep a close eye on.
You may be familiar with the forex trading strategy that is the ‘carry trade’.
This is a tactic that typically relies on their being disparities in interest rates between two countries that boast liquid forex trading opportunities. The success is in predicting currency pairs where a high-yielding currency can be traded against a low-yielding counterpart. It’s a risky strategy, particularly in times of great global volatility, but it’s a technique that many traders have deployed for years.
In essence, we are looking to sell a currency with a low interest rate to then re-invest and buy into a higher-interest currency, with the difference in yield being our takeaway profit.
Some nations with notable currencies have historically offered low interest rates, such as Japan, while the same is true in reverse in Australia – although rumors suggest the interest rate in the UK could hit an eye-watering 5% early next year!
The pursuit of convenience is something that people have done from the beginning of time. It is the objective of millions of scientists and researchers who toil away in labs, wearing safety goggles and clean white lab coats, labouring over prototypes. Putting the scientific method to work for the purpose of bettering our way of life and making it easier in ever-increasing ways, is the driving force behind the development of technology.
Apps have been some of the biggest game-changers in this regard. One can contribute most of life’s conveniences to apps. Want to do some shopping? A few taps is all one needs and they can reinvent their wardrobe. Late for a meeting and can’t take the bus? A taxi is a few taps away. Need to get someone a gift at the last minute? You can sort that out with an app.
Apps have essentially changed our lives, for the better, no matter where we live and no matter which area you can think of.
The stock market is one of the industries that has been profoundly altered as a result of the growth of mobile applications. Apps have fundamentally altered the functioning of the stock market since they are now available to an increasing number of people who are interested in trying their hand at trading.
But how does one differentiate the good apps, from those of lower quality? Does this translate the same worldwide, and is it the same for example, within the U.S and Australia for example? This article will perfectly demonstrate how to differentiate between apps of high quality for your trading experience, and those which lack in quality.
Why Should You Use Apps: A Brief Look At The Main Advantages
When one is entering the foray of the stock market and the requisite apps which may come with it, one may be sceptical of them to say the least, or if not sceptical, may not see the practicality that stock apps may offer.
The key reason why apps are truly worthwhile to use in today’s world is because of how easily accessible they have become to the general public. This accessibility has made stock trading an investment that is worth making.
Many apps generate a substantial revenue stream proportional to the number of users who download them; consequently, in order to attract a larger user base, these apps will make themselves easier to use and may even provide simulated trading activities to help traders become more familiar with the stock market.
The main point of this argument is that it is in the best interest of any stock trading app that is worth its salt to be accessible to the stock market and to make it easier for you to trade. This is because the more accessible it is to the stock market and the easier it makes it for you to trade, the more traders it is likely to have, and the more traders it has, the higher its revenue will be.
What you Should Look Out For In a Trading App
When it comes to selecting an application, it is only natural that a person will search for something that is primarily suitable for them and that is tailored to the manner in which they intend to invest their money. However, a certain degree of standardisation is often maintained, and what will be described below are the aspects that contribute to this standard, as well as the things that one need to be on the lookout for when selecting a trading app.
Laws and Regulations
When looking for the finest stock app to match your needs, you should prioritise analysing whether or not the broker is reliable and has the necessary licences. After all, you will be putting your own money into the programme. As a result, you must choose the software with extreme caution. As a result, you should avoid using a stock application unless it has been licensed by a trustworthy licensing organisation.
Push Notifications as a Main Feature
It is crucial for trading applications to have the capability to send notifications and alerts to users. It would be virtually Impossible to keep up with the movements in the industry if you were not provided with consistent notifications and alerts. You will need notifications and alerts in order to be able to keep an eye on the significant events that are taking place in the trading market.
App Speed and Quality
Trading applications are intended to perform the function of your personal tools within the field of trades. It doesn’t matter what sort of trades you wish to perform, what counts is for the app to have a fast and high-quality speed. Trading apps that only serve to slow you down are of no use to you as a trader, as you’re on the go most of the time. As a result, the most effective trading software should unquestionably have a speed that does not inhibit its effectiveness.
Know What You Want Out of An App
When it comes to choosing an app, said app needs to have all the features and niches which you would want it to have. However, one cannot accomplish this, if they do not have a solid idea of what they want out of their trading experience.
To get yourself ahead of the curve and be able to adequately choose how to trade, the best bet would be to make, sure to adequately narrow down what it is that you’re looking for in your experience, and then make sure that the programmes you use live up to those expectations as precisely as is humanly possible.
Closing Statements: There Is No Universally Perfect App, Only one Perfect for You
When it comes to all of these different types of apps, none of them are perfect. Some of them are completely different to others, whilst some are carbon copies or cheap knockoffs of each other. Finding the “perfect” app is not what you should be looking for, instead one should keep their eyes peeled to find the app which suits them, whilst still adhering to the aforementioned standard.
You’ve certainly daydreamed more than once about how you’ll invest in a firm, retire well, and see the globe. The accomplishment of this is not a simple task, but one has to begin somewhere. To get started in the world of investing, you don’t have to need a large sum of money; in fact, some people begin with as little as a hundred dollars or less. The good thing is that you can accomplish this all online, without leaving your house, provided you have a brokerage account.
This article will explain in plain English and without jargon how to purchase company shares. Here are the steps you need to take to buy stocks online.
HOW DO SHARES WORK?
When a firm goes public on the stock exchange, it sells shares, which are small portions of the corporation. When you buy shares in a firm, you gain the right to vote on certain company decisions and there is a possibility that you will receive dividends. The company’s stock price fluctuates according to several variables, such as corporate choices, financial performance, and favourable or unfavourable news coverage. This contributes to the process of determining how much the company is worth.
How do you go about purchasing stock in a corporation in the United Kingdom?
Find A Reliable Broker To Trade Online
You need to begin by selecting a trustworthy internet broker to work with. This article might help you out a bit. Just answer a few questions to get a free recommendation, or keep reading to get a general recommendation.
When making a recommendation for a brokerage, we take several factors into consideration, including the costs associated with the broker, the stock prices, the trading platform, the available markets, and how simple it is to register an account. You don’t need to be concerned about this, as we only recommend trustworthy brokers, and the safety of your funds is of the utmost importance. If you wish to find a reliable broker online, click this link to learn more!
Create A Stock Trading Account
Once you’ve decided on an online broker, you’ll need to open a trading account before you can start trading. In most cases, this can be accomplished online. For the most part, a trading account is all that’s required to begin investing in the stock market online. Imagine a bank account that also allows you to keep shares in addition to cash. Usually, it takes a couple of days to open an online brokerage account, but at some brokers, you can do it in just one day.
Transfer Money Into Your Stock Broker’s Account
To purchase and sell stocks online, you must have funds in an investment account.
The bare minimum for a deposit is only twenty dollars. You can invest as little as $500 with certain brokers since they allow you to buy fractional shares. This means that even if one share of Amazon is priced at over $2000, you can still invest that amount.
You can pick between ACH and credit/debit card deposits. At some brokerage firms, such as eToro, for example, you can even use PayPal to finance your investment account.
Find A Stock That You’re Interested In Purchasing
You can receive ideas from the thoughts of others, or you can perform your own study and come up with your own ideas. For instance, you have the option of purchasing some of the stocks that are held by Warren Buffett. In contrast, if you conduct your own research on stocks and invest some time and effort into it, you will gain a great deal more from it. You can get ideas for investments from your stockbroker in the form of stock evaluations and evaluations, but you can also come up with your own ideas through independent research. Learning how to choose a successful stock and the appropriate stock market can also be aided by taking investment classes and keeping up with the latest financial news.
You might want to think about utilizing a stock screener. For example, WallStreetZen does more than just display financial data; it also assists users in interpreting the data and gaining an understanding of the context.
You have the necessary account, funds, and stock to purchase. At this point, all that is required of you is to click the “Buy” button. Stock purchases are initiated when a trader accesses their trading account, locates the stock they intend to acquire, enters the desired quantity of shares, and clicks the “Buy” button. You also have the option of simply selecting the amount of money you would want to invest in the stock in question.
When you place an order, you have the option of selecting from a variety of order types, such as a market order, a stop order, or a stop limit order. While a limit order enables you to define the precise price at which you wish to acquire the shares, a market order buys shares right away at the market’s current price. You may get further information on the various order kinds here.
Review Your Stock Holdings Regularly
It is over; you have successfully purchased the shares, and they are now on your own. Now more than ever, it is essential to keep an eye on your finances.
If you purchased the shares intending to keep them for a longer period of time, you do not need to monitor the price fluctuations on a daily basis; however, you should consider monitoring the quarterly or annual reports as well as the corporate forecast. This essentially involves doing periodic reviews of the financial strategy you have in place.
Setting a stop-loss price at which to limit losses and a target price at which to sell stocks at a profit are two examples of position management strategies for traders holding positions for shorter time horizons.
What’s The Next Step?
When you already hold shares, you are able to monitor the performance of those shares. This is something you may do periodically, such as after the release of financial reports or the announcement of dividends, or whenever your selected firms are discussed in the media. Although you should plan on holding onto your investments for at least a few years, if a particular holding fails to meet your planned returns you have the option to sell.
Since 2020, the commercial world has changed so much that it’s almost impossible for many to remember what business was like in the previous century. Before the advent of social media, widespread use of mobile phones, worldwide internet connectivity, and AI (artificial intelligence), the daily life of business owners and workers was completely different than it is today. What are some of the most impactful, on the ground factors that are part of today’s cutting-edge business environment? For one, college degrees have become an indispensable part of the corporate resume for job seekers. Additionally, sole proprietorships are becoming much more common as independent-minded entrepreneurs choose to take their own paths to the top.
In just the last five years, huge numbers of new business owners are choosing to work from their homes, which has led to much lower demand for physical office space in city commercial centers. As government regulation of the commercial sector expands, large corporations are forced to operate in more restrictive environments. Another change is the continued shift from a production economy to one that is more service-based and centered on intangibles like data, information, and IT infrastructure. The following are a few of the most pertinent changes in the commercial world.
College Degrees Offer Long-Term Job Security
For serious success in the world of commercial business, college degrees have become nearly a requirement for all serious candidates. Just a generation ago, it was still possible to get by without a four-year diploma, and many still enter the trades after spending time in vocational programs. But, in business, college is more vital than it ever has been.
Fortunately, student loans are available for anyone who wants to tackle the academic challenge that comes with a degree program. Education loans make it possible to attend an institution of their choice without having to worry about paying for next semester’s tuition or fees. Borrowing some or all of the money needed for college makes it possible for students to focus on their coursework and earn good grades, which is the whole point of education in the first place.
Physical Office Space is No Longer Necessary
In an economic environment where billions of dollars are spent every day online, it’s no surprise that internet-based businesses and virtual companies are gaining popularity. One of the results of the widespread use of computers in retail buying and selling is a decreased need for physical office space. At least in the business community, much of the work can be done without having any face-to-face contact with clients. This trend will likely continue to gain momentum as more entrepreneurs and startups operate 100% online operations.
Sole Proprietorships are More Common
Another result of the online commercial revolution is a rapid growth in the number of sole proprietors. Many businesses that traditionally were done face-to-face by small companies now make ideal startups for individuals who work from home. Tax preparers, financial counselors, and resume writers are just a few of the new wave of one-person companies that are changing the face of modern business. Many brokers who previously worked for large firms now run their own operations from home-based offices.
When you’re just starting in the world of cryptocurrency, the dozens of different cryptocurrencies, from Bitcoin and Ethereum to Dogecoin and Tether, might be intimidating. To help you gain your bearings, these are the top ten cryptocurrencies with the biggest growth potential or the total value of all coins currently in circulation.
Top Cryptocurrencies with the Most Potential for Growth:
The best cryptocurrencies in 2022 aren’t just currencies; they’re also native assets for some of the most intriguing organizations and projects in the financial industry. Both Mark Cuban and Andreessen Horowitz are major fans of cryptocurrencies, particularly decentralized finance (DeFi) investments, which have been popular this year. Here are some of the top VC-backed cryptocurrencies to invest in 2021.
1. Bitcoin (BTC)Bitcoin (BTC) is the first cryptocurrency, created by Satoshi Nakamoto in 2009.BTC, like the majority of cryptocurrencies, is built on a blockchain, which is a distributed ledger that tracks transactions over a network of thousands of computers. Because modifications to the distributed ledgers must be authenticated by solving a cryptographic puzzle, a process known as proof of work, Bitcoin remains secret and secure against fraudsters.
Bitcoin’s value has soared as it has grown in popularity. A single Bitcoin cost roughly $500 in May 2016. A single Bitcoin was worth roughly $29,700 on June 1, 2022. That’s an increase of more than 5,800%.
2. Ethereum (ETH)Because of its potential uses, such as smart contracts that run automatically when conditions are fulfilled and non-fungible tokens, Ethereum is a favorite of programmers as both a cryptocurrency and a blockchain platform (NFTs).
The Ethereum network is used to create the majority of non-fungible tokens (NFTs). As a result, an inflow of NFT purchasers might raise Ether’s price. Ethereum is used to buy and sell NFTs; the more investors that want to buy NFTs, the higher the demand for ETH.
Ethereum has also exploded in popularity. Its price increased by over 16,300 percent from April 2016 to the beginning of June 2022, from around $11 to over $1,800.
3. Tether (USDT)Tether (USDT) is a stablecoin, meaning it is backed by fiat currencies such as the US dollar and the Euro and has the same theoretical value as one of those denominations. Tether’s value is meant to be more stable than that of other cryptocurrencies, which is why it is popular among investors who are concerned about the extreme volatility of other coins.
4. U.S. Dollar Coin (USDC)USD Coin (USDC), like Tether, is a stablecoin that is backed by US dollars and aims for a 1 USD to 1 USDC ratio. USDC is a cryptocurrency based on Ethereum that may be used to conduct international transactions.
5. Binance Coin (BNB)Binance Coin (BNB) is a cryptocurrency that may be used to trade and pay fees on Binance, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. Binance Coin has evolved beyond just completing transactions on Binance’s trading platform since its launch in 2017. It may now be used for trading, payment processing, and even arranging travel arrangements. It may also be exchanged for other cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum or Bitcoin.
The price of BNB in 2017 was only $0.10. Its value had risen to approximately $300 by early June 2022, representing an increase of roughly 300,000 percent.
6. XRP (XRP)XRP, a digital technology and payment processing corporation developed by some of the same individuals as Ripple, may be used on that network to facilitate the exchange of many different currencies, including fiat currencies and major cryptocurrencies.
XRP was worth $0.006 at the start of 2017. By June 1, 2022, its price had risen by more than 6,400%, hitting $0.40.
7. Cardano (ADA)Cardano (ADA), a latecomer to the crypto realm, is well-known for pioneering the use of proof-of-stake validation. This technique minimizes transaction time, energy usage, and environmental impact by removing the competitive, problem-solving aspect of transaction verification present in systems such as Bitcoin. Cardano, like Ethereum, allows smart contracts and decentralized apps through the usage of ADA, its native coin.
Cardano’s ADA coin has developed slowly in compared to other notable crypto currencies. In 2017, the price of ADA was $0.02. As of June 1, 2022, its current price is $0.55. This is a 2,650% increase.
8. Binance USD (BUSD)Binance USD (BUSD) is a stablecoin developed by Paxos and Binance to produce a cryptocurrency backed by the US dollar. To maintain this value, Paxos holds a quantity of US dollars equivalent to the whole supply of BUSD. BUSD, like other stablecoins, enables traders and crypto consumers to transact with other crypto assets while mitigating the risk of price volatility.
9. Solana (SOL)One of Ethereum’s key competitors, Solana, has seen exponential growth in 2021 and is one of the cryptocurrencies with biggest growth potential. Solana has climbed from a low of $1 in the year before 2021 to about $100. Solana is one of the largest decentralized financial blockchains, with billions of dollars in cryptocurrencies stored on its blockchain. Many investors are flocking to Solana’s blockchain for both NFTs and DeFi.
To perform transactions quickly and securely, Solana offers a hybrid proof-of-stake and proof-of-history approach. It was developed to aid in the powering of decentralized finance (DeFi), decentralized apps (DApps), and smart contracts. The platform is powered by SOL, Solana’s native coin.
When SOL was introduced in 2020, its price was $0.77. By early June 2022, its value had risen to roughly $40.58, a gain of more than 5,100%.
10. Dogecoin (DOGE)Dogecoin originated as a joke in 2013, but thanks to a dedicated community and clever memes, it soon blossomed into a major cryptocurrency. There is no limit to the number of Dogecoins that may be issued, unlike many other cryptocurrencies, rendering the currency subject to devaluation as supply expands.
Dogecoin’s price in 2017 was $0.0002. Its price had climbed 40,000 percent to $0.08 on June 1, 2022.
What is The Best Cryptocurrency to Buy in June 2022?
The best new cryptocurrency to buy in right now is DeFi Coin (DEFC). While the rest of the crypto market has been falling, this currency has soared more than 500% in response to news that DeFi Swap, the platform behind DeFi Coin, has finally launched its long-awaited crypto exchange.
DeFi Currency may now be obtained by swapping it for another coin. DeFi Swap also serves as a DeFi staking platform, with APY rates ranging from 30% to 75% when you stake DeFi Coin. You must lock in your DeFi Coin for 360 days to get the greatest rate.
DeFi Coin, in particular, is meant to encourage long-term investment. A 10% fee is applied to every DeFi Coin sale, incentivizing investors to hang on even as the price climbs.
10 Cryptocurrencies with The Biggest Growth Potential to Buy Right Now- Final Thoughts
The development of cryptocurrencies and decentralized financial solutions is still in its early stages. If you’re new to cryptocurrencies, it could be wiser to start with a small amount of risk capital and build a portfolio of prominent cryptocurrencies. Initial coin offerings (ICOs) can be alluring, especially given their steep rises. A sharp decline in value after the ICO is almost as common.
More established currencies, as opposed to newly minted cryptocurrencies, help to reduce volatility and provide greater liquidity. It’s crucial to know where you can trade a cryptocurrency and how big the market is for that coin.
Many early investors have learned that there is no practical way to get out of their investments. If cryptocurrencies are here to stay, there are likely to be some incredibly great opportunities among the most widely traded currencies, while also avoiding risk from abandoned projects or a lack of liquidity.
No matter the size or nature of your business, effective management calls for analytical ability. Fleet management is one of those tasks that necessitates a well-thought-out plan from the outset, just like managing your finances and collaborating with suppliers. It’s not enough to simply buy the proper vehicles; you also need a plan for keeping them in excellent condition. You need to take preventive actions if you want to save money and maintain productivity.
Here are six recommendations for effective fleet management:
Use Fleet Management Technology
Investing in technology can give you an edge over the competition when it comes to managing your fleet.
For one, modern solutions, like fleet tracking software, are used for tracking trucks. The safety of drivers is paramount, so it’s a must to always know where each vehicle is. However, keeping tabs on the whereabouts of a fleet of vehicles, be it five or 1,000, is not as easy as it sounds. So, when it comes to keeping an eye on fleet operations and ensuring the security of vehicles, firms rely on GPS technology and other GPS monitoring systems.
Furthermore, if you use an advanced system to create your maintenance reports, you’ll be able to make smarter, more timely decisions that will have a positive effect on your business in the short and long term.
Prioritize Fleet Safety
Fleet managers should pay attention to the condition of their vehicles and drivers to avoid any accidents. Don’t wait for an accident to happen before you start thinking about fleet safety. Luckily, strategies exist for businesses to reduce the number of distractions and risks their drivers face on the job. For instance, you may provide your drivers with hands-free gadgets to prevent them from being distracted by smartphones and GPS use.
Moreover, the fleet manager is responsible for enforcing the company’s health and safety policies, and any additional procedures that may be necessary to ensure the fleet’s protection.
Remember that the expenses your business will incur by taking precautions are far less than the risks you’ll be leaving on the table by doing nothing.
Measure What’s Important
Metrics are valuable because they allow businesses to track progress, but they might lose their meaning if they aren’t measuring the right things. In order to keep control of your fleet, precise measurement is essential.
Cost per mile, fuel expenses, driver behavior, compliance, inspections, and operating costs are just a few aspects that provide valuable insight into vehicle and fleet performance. A centralized fleet management software or an upgraded smart spreadsheet can do the computations for you, helping improve efficiency and simplify the process of keeping track of such pieces of information.
Choose The Right Vehicles
While it’s true that you can probably discover some great prices by shopping around, you’ll save money in the long run by purchasing the right vehicles.
It’s preferable to have all purchases go through a single fleet manager. And, whether or not that’s possible, it’s important to make a list of required equipment for all vehicle purchases. If you overmatch or undermatch a vehicle’s major feature specs, it could be bad for business. Vehicles that aren’t a good fit for their intended tasks will likely collect dust in the parking lot. Overmatched vehicles, meanwhile, can do the work, but at a much higher cost.
Also, it’s worth noting that the greatest vehicles for your fleet now won’t remain that way in a few years. Thus, your procurement plan should be based on the latest information to help your team make the best choices.
Set Up Replacement Cycles For Vehicles
Fleet managers will be able to replace vehicles that have reached a high mileage limit or are otherwise no longer suitable for fleet safety if they have a replacement cycle in place. Because costly fleet vehicle part replacements are eliminated, fleet managers are able to save money. As a result, it helps mitigate problems with vehicles’ components that could otherwise lead to accidents.
All of the aforementioned suggestions are vital to effective fleet management, but they won’t be enough on their own. You also need to get your workforce involved in solving systemic issues. Gather your personnel for strategy discussions and brainstorming to develop a culture of teamwork. Increasing your understanding of your own management style is another area for improvement.
These insights will improve the security, effectiveness, and ethics of your fleet. It’s scalable, so, with the right strategies, you may expand your business without experiencing any hiccups.
Square 9 Softworks, the ‘Most Innovative Digital Transformation Software Provider’ for 2022, has developed a stellar international reputation for simplifying common business tasks with a complete overhaul of its clients’ business processes. With enterprise content management, document capture, web forms, and business automation tools, it streamlines its clients’ internal infrastructure and allows them to save time, money, and manpower, ensuring their staff can get on with the truly important things in their day to day.
Automating the important yet mundane is something that Square 9 Softworks has made one of its core competencies over the years, turning the paper-intensive paperless and freeing up the schedules of people who previously had to sink time into handling such things manually. Nominally, it allows businesses to find more time for growth and innovation, able to trust the sophisticated backroom processes that Square 9 Softworks has put in place for content management, document capture, and much more. Indeed, part of this trust cultivation has been ensuring that these processes are disaster ready and flexible in the face of change.
With powerful, business continuity, risk tested, and rigorously developed processes, its streamlined solutions allow for dependable, secure – and perhaps most importantly, compliant – document management that fits itself seamlessly to all manner of different roles and requirements. Indeed, the way Square 9 Softworks works it in inviting clients to use its online tool to input their role and sector in order to find out which of its solutions would best the client, their team, and their business. Its huge variety of software-as-a-service offerings also cover custom solutions, in which Square 9 Softworks will work one-on-one with a client to create something truly bespoke.
Critically, its champion-level service is also backed up by a team that are on hand to support its clients at every turn. From the very first interaction with a client, in which Square 9 Softworks aims to learn their strengths, goals, and weaknesses, to progress meetings months down the line, there will always be a clear and empathic line of communication open through which a client can reach a friendly and helpful human voice. Whether a client is using its solutions to streamline their HR processes such as onboarding and employee management, or to achieve something more sector specific such as making use of accounting software for agriculture, it is excited to show just how widely applicable its business support is.
Indeed, it can help an agriculture company to manage their permits, purchase order forms, invoices, and other such papers in a customizable and impeccably implemented fashion. This extends to food supply, education, automation, distribution, and government, allowing it to make a name for itself with everything from progress reports to IEP approvals and student portfolios, the support of which is handled by its team of experts. Dedicated to going above and beyond to meet customer needs, the team is experienced, highly trained, and well educated, delivering complete transparency as they work in order to reassure its clients that they will never be without access to help.
With wait-times measured in minutes available through its website, its training videos, documentation, and technology tips come with an easy ticketing system that processes support requests. Crucially, it ensures that it has kept itself to scale with its demand so that it has the right number of staff to respond to the number of clients it takes on, resulting in a reliable, sustainable, and well managed business that keeps clients at the very core of its operations.
It is this quality of service that has achieved it recognition by KeyPoint Intelligence, who nominated it for the Buyer’s Lab Pick Award from 2020 to 2022. Moreover, it was recognized by G2 as a leading developer of Enterprise Content Management Software, and earned the Marcum Tech Top 40 Award for its continual innovation and ingenuity, a critical part of its business model. Essentially, with over 15 years of experience in fast, disruption free implementation that allows the delivery of the best solutions on time, within budget, and to specification, it has managed to earn a satisfaction rate of 96% amongst its customers.
This number has been derived from its long history of being able to maintain positive client relations. Its in-depth, empathic, and solution-based way of working endears it to a broad variety of clients found up and down a multitude of industry verticals, allowing the holistic transformation of business with an intuitively designed, secure, and innovative technological processes. The result of this is a new generation of businesses who can assign their time more productively, setting tasks to their staff that allow for a fulfilling and effectively organized workday that doesn’t contain a variety of menial tasks.
The promise that Square 9 Softworks makes to its clients is one that speaks to the hope of getting a client’s document capture up to the best it can be. With each of these processes being implemented with ease, a user-intuitive mindset, and a respect for a client’s existing framework, it offers several different OCR strategies and other such developments, invaluable for all manner of teams. Thusly, demand for its services has only gone up over the course of the covid-19 pandemic, as it became more and more important for the technological frameworks a company depends on to be flawless in their design and perfectly functionable in their execution of tasks. With its recently released Scanner Offer in partnership with Kodak Alaris, Square 9 Softworks’ future is gearing up to be a bright one; and it is excited to bring its clients and wider industry with it as it continues to push towards bigger and better.
For business enquiries, contact Alexa Pritchard from Square 9 Softworks on their website – square-9.com
Woodside Quality LLC (Woodside) is a CVE Certified Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) providing performance improvement, project management, and analytics support to federal and commercial clients. Recognised as Best Performance Improvement Consulting Firm 2022 – Virginia in this issue of SME News magazine, we take a closer look at the company.
Woodside Quality LLC is the ground-breaking company with a long-standing track record of excellence in solving the difficult problems. Its consultants are highly educated and experienced personnel with careers focused on transformation of operations through sound analysis. With experience in service, healthcare, manufacturing, defence, finance, information technology, and product development, Woodside Quality LLC is prepared to support its clients’ most complex operations.
Five core values underly the work the Woodside team does. Firstly is knowing its customers – who they are, what they want, and what they need. Next is life-long learning, as Deming once said, “There is no substitute for knowledge”. Systems thinking is about approaching each problem from a holistic view point. Understanding variation focuses on statistical thinking. Finally, every member of the team has an appreciation for the human dignity and inherent worth of each individual.
These core values enable Woodside to help its clients optimise their value chain systems and put measures in place to hold the gains and continually discover opportunities to improve. Of course, as its clients learn from it, it learns from them, growing its knowledge base and skillsets as each new problem is solved. The company’s tagline describes its approach – It analyses the customer’s processes to provide the keenest, most in-depth insight into the cause systems that drive success. This insight enables them to make data-driven, sound business and operational decisions. These informed decisions then ensure customers deliver consistent exceptional results.
Every new client presents different challenges. Woodside’s consultants have worked across the spectrum of manufacturing as well as service industries, from healthcare to software, from hospitality to medical devices, from financial services to telecommunications, and in governmental agencies including the Department of Defence, Veterans Affairs, EPA, and GSA. The diverse experience coupled with its scientific approach to learning in every engagement are what drive the primary factor in Woodside’s differentiation: its consultants’ breadth and depth of knowledge, and its ability to adapt its approach to each client’s unique situation.
Indeed, as a knowledge-based consultancy, Woodside has no success that is not driven by the acumen and competence of each and every person within the firm. In recruiting new talent, it looks for those who share its core values. It looks for people who have an innate sense of curiosity about the world, who want to learn about the systems and processes they encounter in their work to understand the causes of problems. It values humour and patience, and a bias for informed action. Of course, as an SDVOSB, Woodside is proud to support its veterans by hiring veterans wherever possible. It knows that its nation’s veterans have the work ethic and technical ability to be excellent contractors and consultants.
CEO of Woodside, Rip Stauffer says, “Our diverse workforce and the competency of our staff contribute to an internal culture where facts are valued above conjecture, where every opinion is valued (even if it might be challenged). New insights gleaned from engagement often contribute to the success of any other engagement. This snowballing effect has grown our reputation with clients to the point where most of our new engagements have come from previous clients or through word of mouth.”
However, the COVID-19 pandemic made some of Woodside’s processes more difficult (because they required face-to-face action), but it presented the team with a myriad of new learning opportunities, too. The company has picked up new tools and skills for running efficient and effective remote sessions of all types. This remote work has enabled it to hire exceptional talent from across the country, further expanding its diverse mix of experience and knowledge.
Now, it has new headquarters in Ashburn, Virginia, which it has been operating from since June 2022. Not only does this office give employees a comfortable space to work in, but it also enables the hosting of clients and partners for in-person meetings and collaborations.
Woodside President, David Allway comments, “The office gives us a dedicated place to work for the first time since COVID-19 began in 2019.”
Having been beginning its expansion early on in the pandemic, the company has never had a real home to call its own before. Lockdowns and quarantines forced setbacks for working in-person, but as restrictions lifted, the team found a great opportunity to return to working face-to-face for the foreseeable future. Thus, there is truly nothing holding Woodside back now – The world is its oyster, and we at SME News are rooting for it to thrive and succeed.
Monaco is considered one of the most ideal places of residence for anyone seeking to reside in a safe European location with world-class leisure facilities, a sublime climate, and a favourable tax system. Monaco residents benefit from no personal income tax, making the principality a sought-after choice for wealthy individuals seeking to relocate to Monaco as their main residence.
With the continued growth of luxury real estate, Monaco will long be a superb investment opportunity. To find out more about an apartment for sale in Monaco, read on below.
Monaco residency requirements
To become a Monaco resident, applicants must show proof of accommodation. This may include the purchase documents of local real estate, details of the property you plan to rent for a minimum of one year, or a letter and proof of property ownership or rental from a close relative who resides in Monaco. Potential Monaco residents may also own a company that holds corporate real estate in Monaco.
In addition, all applicants of a Monaco residence by investment must demonstrate financial self-sufficiency to live in Monaco. The minimum amount required by the Monaco government for a residency application is €500,000 per the main applicant and must be held with the bank at all times during the residency period.
Financial self-sufficiency may also be demonstrated by showing that the applicant is employed by a Monaco company or that they plan to form a new company in Monaco that creates at least 10 new jobs, or finally, they can provide a letter of support from a close relative the applicant plans to live with.
Once the residency has been granted, the applicant of the Monaco residence by investment can live in Monaco for as long as desired. After 10 years of permanent residency status, it is possible to apply for Monaco citizenship.
Benefits of becoming a Monaco resident
Living in Monaco has many benefits, making it a great time to invest in Monaco real estate and become a Monaco resident.
For many, Monaco’s warm and stable climate and convenient geographical position make it an attractive place to live. With over 300 days of sunshine a year, Monaco qualifies as one of the sunniest European locations. It is also bordered on three sides by France, while the other side borders the Mediterranean Sea, making it the ideal location for skiing throughout the winter or hiking in the alps in the summer.
Monaco’s exquisite beaches, unparalleled dining, exceptional real estate, and world-class leisure facilities have contributed to the principality’s status. It is also the host of some of the most well-known events, including the Monaco Grand Prix and the Monaco Yacht Show.
Monaco also presents a very high standard of living due to its access to reputable private schools, trustworthy private medical facilities, and having one of the lowest crime rates in Europe.
Not forgetting its favourable tax system that levies no income tax, no wealth tax, no local tax, no property tax, and no capital gains tax on individuals.
Monaco residence by investment; a secure value
Monaco real estate prices continue to rise, offering a sound return on investment year after year.
According to the latest Real Estate Observatory Report, released in early 2022, the majority of property in Monaco sell for around 5 to 10 million Euros.
Monaco real estate prices have increased by 75% in the past decade. These exceptional property price increases are being driven by demand as more high-net-worth-individuals seek out the benefits of owning Monaco real estate. Due to Monaco’s small land mass, there is limited inventory of Monaco property for sale and rent, further increasing property prices.
It is without question that Monaco is one of the finest places in the world to reside. If you are seeking a Monaco residence by investment, contact a trusted real estate agent in the principality and let them find you your dream apartment for sale in Monaco.
Welcome to the October edition of Acquisition International magazine, bringing you the latest news, features, and success stories from businesses all over the world.
Autumn brings us brisk mornings, crunchy leaves underfoot, and a time of deep reflection. We welcome this new season with open arms and we have plenty to look forward to. With many small steps to extravagant plans in progress, these businesses have something to offer to us all. Whether it’s aid or inspiration, there’s an avenue for us to explore with the help and motivation from them.
Here we present a collection of businesses and individuals all searching for – and securing – new ways to help others. They improve businesses everywhere and have a wide reach around the world. Working with some well-known organisations, they have carved out a bold and beautiful path for themselves. They have become trailblazers for generations to come and will continue to be that guiding light for the foreseeable future.
From video production to performance marketing, IT consulting to law firm solutions, and financial advice to digital technology that can help our thought processes, this issue offers the chance to peruse a myriad of articles within these areas – and beyond.
We hope you find this issue informative and motivational, and we look forward to meeting you again for our next edition.
It’s easy to think that because you’ve seen A Few Good Men or watched a few episodes of Suits, you know what lawyers get up to from day to day.
Of course the reality is very different from the way the work of legal pros is interpreted in the media. So what kinds of tasks does a criminal defence lawyer take on, and how will this help you if you’re accused of a crime?
Interviewing clients in detail
Once a lawyer is assigned to your case, or you hire them independently, they’ll speak to you privately about all of the pertinent information, and use what they find to begin determining the next steps that are best for you.
Speaking to a lawyer is a legal right, as is having what you tell them kept confidential, so it’s always worth grabbing this opportunity.
Carrying out their own investigations
A criminal lawyer won’t just base their defence of a client on a single conversation; they’ll seek to dig deep into the case, using investigative skills and hiring others to assist if necessary so that they’ve got as much leverage as possible if it goes to trial.
This can involve interviewing witnesses, and also checking to see what the prosecution is intending to use against their client. And at a time when even celebs are highlighting underhanded police behaviours, a good lawyer is more important than ever.
Examining evidence and finding flaws or paths forward
There’s a lot involved in evidence analysis, and this isn’t just something which the cops do to find defendants guilty.
Criminal lawyers take a look at everything pertinent to the case to see if it stacks up with the claims made against their clients, or if there’s been a mistake in the system which could free them, or at least raise doubts about the prosecution’s case. This kind of attention to detail is one of the things that could help you sleep at night if you’re the one under scrutiny.
Finding a criminal lawyer if you’re accused of a crime
To get the best lawyer for your case, you need to look to experienced pros who are located nearby. For example, the accomplished lawyers at Marshall serve as criminal defence lawyers for clients across New Jersey, because they know better than anyone else what it takes to fight a criminal accusation in this state.
Ensuring a lack of bias in the jury
Another legal requirement is that when a case goes before a jury, the members are carefully vetted to ensure there’s no innate bias against the defendant present.
The defence lawyer is part of this filtration process, and they will even be able to eliminate jurors if all they’ve got to go on is a hunch.
Pleading with the prosecutor
Striking a plea bargain is common in many cases, because it means that the defendant can minimize their sentence or even avoid incarceration altogether, so long as they make certain concessions.
A lawyer will be the negotiator in this instance, and so again it pays to have experienced legal professionals on your side.
Holding court at the trial
This is the part of the job that’s usually featured at the cinema or on TV. Lawyers do really perform many of the theatrics that you’ve seen recreated by actors, although this goes on for hours, days or even weeks, rather than just a few minutes.
Seeking fair sentencing
Should a lawyer have been unable to get a client the outcome they’d hoped for, after a conviction they will again negotiate with the prosecutor to try and make sure that the sentence their client receives is proportionate.
So in terms of what criminal lawyers actually do, the answer is that they do a heck of a lot for a lot of people!
There are a number of different strategies that businesses can use to acquire other businesses.
However, the best strategy for a particular business will depend on a number of factors, including the size and financial condition of the target business, the industry in which it operates, and the overall objectives of the acquiring company.
In general, there are a few key strategies that are often used in successful business acquisitions.
In a merger, one company acquires another company and then combines the companies under a single corporate identity.
Mergers are often used to acquire larger businesses because the acquirer gains access to the target company’s existing customer base and product lines. This can help the acquirer gain market share and increase its overall profits.
When two companies merge, their operations are integrated, and each company’s assets are distributed between the two shareholders of the newly combined business.
In a merger, the acquiring company usually pays a combination of cash, stock, and/or other assets to the other company’s shareholders. The acquiring company’s shareholders then become owners of the newly formed business.
Another common strategy is to buy out the target company’s shareholders. This can be done through a tender offer, in which the acquiring company offers to purchase shares from shareholders at a premium price. Businesses often acquire other companies by purchasing the shares of the target company.
There are two primary types of stock purchases: friendly and hostile. In a friendly acquisition, the acquiring company purchases shares of the target company from the current shareholders.
Friendly acquisitions are often used when the acquiring company wants to expand its operations by acquiring a smaller company that offers a product or service that complements its own business.
Asset Acquisition is a process by which a company acquires another company’s assets. Asset acquisition is often used when the acquiring company does not want to assume the liabilities of the target company.
An asset acquisition often involves the acquiring company purchasing a portion of the target company’s assets and then liquidating the rest of the target company’s assets to satisfy any outstanding debts.
For instance, with a motor sales company, each vehicle owned by the target company needs to be insured. Therefore, it’s vital to know the difference between unstacked or stacked insurance.
A recapitalization occurs when a company issues new shares of its common stock to a group of investors to replace its existing equity.
In many cases, a business that is experiencing financial difficulties will attempt to recapitalize its operations to raise additional capital. A company that is experiencing financial difficulties may try to recapitalize its operations through a private placement.
A private placement occurs when an investor buys shares of a company’s stock directly from the company. A company that is recapitalizing its operations may also issue new shares of its stock publicly.
Co-operation strategies are arrangements in which two or more companies agree to cooperate with one another to expand their operations. Co-operation strategies can be used to enter new geographic markets, or they can be used to provide each company with new products or services.
When two companies engage in a cooperation strategy, they generally each retain their current operations. However, they also agree to share knowledge and resources with each other.
A reverse merger is a type of acquisition in which a private company gains public trading status by acquiring a publicly traded company.
In a reverse merger, the private company is the acquiring company, and the publicly traded company is acquired by the private company. When a private company acquires a publicly traded company by way of a reverse merger, it gains the public trading status of the acquired company.
There are a number of different strategies that businesses can use to acquire other businesses. As mentioned, a business acquisition can be a great way to grow your company if you approach it thoughtfully and undertake the necessary due diligence.
By understanding the risks and benefits associated with an acquisition, you can make an informed decision about whether this is the right path for your business.
In recent months, there seemed to be a sharper focus on a specific work arrangement, remote working. As its name implies, this means members of the workforce or employees are all working from remote settings, usually from the comfort of their homes. Depending on the work done in your organization, some team members can even be from overseas.
Remote working soared in popularity, as it consistently proves its advantages from the end of the employer and even from the employees. It is, however, not perfect, as it is laden with challenges unique to remote working. One of those challenges has to do with employee communication. The absence of a physical connection may lead to a lack of communication and miscommunication if its importance isn’t understood.
To that end, here are some reasons why employee communication has to be nurtured and fostered, especially when in a remote work setting.
It Bridges The Gap Brought By Physical Distance
The physical distance between team members should no longer be felt with various apps and mediums of communication over the Internet. It’s up to you to choose which ones to use for your business. As a bonus point, learn more about employee communications application here to understand better how they can benefit your business. In a nutshell, employees in a virtual office can be just as close with their colleagues as those in physical offices are.
To do this, you may opt to have different group chats, like one for work-related queries and another merely to chat with others. It helps make work-life easy and fun, particularly when non-work-related conversations pop up. Even those in a remote work setting need a moment to take a break.
It Increases Employee Trust And Engagement
When employees feel they’re in an organization where communication is the norm, they may be more engaged with their co-workers. Whatever the type of working arrangement is, employee engagement is needed to keep employees happy.
A good practice related to good communication is for organizations to have regular check-ins with their team members. Keep those conversations confidential, so employees with concerns can feel open to speaking out. They don’t carry that weight, potentially affecting their work quality.
It Keeps Everyone Up-To-Date With Company News And Announcements
Miscommunication and confusion happen when other employees are left out of announcements and updates. This situation is no stranger in a remote setting, whereby employees don’t have hallway announcement boards or memos as in a physical office.
To avoid this, make it a point to communicate every announcement, any changes, and upgrades in company policies on the group chats, for instance. Many online communication tools come with all sorts of features to ensure visibility of those announcements, like pinning those.
If your organization doesn’t prioritize communication, you can expect your virtual office to be chaotic. Your employees won’t be on the same page as recent workplace developments.
It May Prevent Friction Between Employees
As is the case in any relationship, the lack of communication is often a reason for friction and misunderstanding between employees. Expectations may not be on the same page, and responsibilities will also be questioned, among a few situations.
This situation may be one of the biggest concerns in remote working, given that there’s much more room for miscommunication when talking virtually. The tone of the message may not be accurately construed when solving problems through chat.
However, you also can’t blame some employees for being shy to talk over the phone or camera if this type of communication wasn’t established as a norm in your remote workplace when they were hired. Meeting the middle point can be achieved only through good communication. Should there seem to be a conflict between two employees, such can be addressed quickly and promptly through communication. If you continue to give deaf ears to those, the friction between employees will continue, impacting their work results.
Remote working or not, effective communication is very important in any collaborative process, such as work discussions. Communication problems can arise in any organization, even more so with those working remotely. Working around those challenges starts with clearly understanding why good communication is key. That begins today. Because you’re now aware of its implications in your workplace, management will be more intentional in making the necessary efforts to maintain good employee communication. And by doing so, you can effectively safeguard your business from the adverse effects of poor communication.
There is no doubt that mobile phones have deeply entwined into our daily lives. They fulfill a wide variety of needs, from allowing us to consume quality training sessions to the ability to capture special moments or ordering our favorite dessert.
Mobile training is more practical, convenient, interesting, and economical, and enables a more satisfying experience for employees. Mobile learning, which is sometimes referred to as mLearning, is the desire and capacity to learn using virtual media, including content material, interpersonal relationships, and portable electronic devices.
Mobile devices, such as phones, tablet devices, and smart notebooks, can be employed for mLearning. It emphasizes the learners’ flexibility and involvement with technology. This informal learning environment is created by using mobile applications to make learning easier. The benefits are described in more detail below.
Why You Should Consider Mobile Learning?
Since everything in the world is mobile, the material must be adaptable, responsive, and portable. This kind of diversified mobile engagement is common in today’s workforce, whether it be for just-in-time information searches or taking a formal training program.
People are incorporating training programs into their everyday lives more frequently than ever, thus cross-device availability is necessary.
Businesses must therefore change their learning ecosystems in order to adapt to the contemporary learning environment and deliver the relevant information at the appropriate time.
Mobile learning, which encompasses all digital resources that enable access from a mobile device, has gained popularity in recent years. That’s because it’s accessible from any place and is simple to use.
It also provides a wide range of benefits for employees, such as learning outside of working hours. Mobile learning is when you combine formal learning activities using mobile phones.
Let us look at some additional benefits of mLearning:
Helps Employees In Maintaining Focus
Employees have the option of learning on their own schedule with a portable device. Employees are not required to take time off of work for required classes or stress about failing to attend training sessions. Since it enables the company to cut expenditures on training while still adding to an employee’s productivity, mobile learning is also beneficial for the organization.
Learning On The Go Is More Accessible
Given that it is more accessible than other learning strategies, mobile learning is quite beneficial. Employees get 24/7 access to course materials from just about any device. As a result, they can learn new skills without having to rely on a laptop in the workplace or a campus library. Employees can effortlessly engage with other learners while using mobile devices for completing their training sessions.
The same feature is available in contemporary apps like WhatsApp and others. Have a concern? Simply pick up your phone and contact your peer learner. Discovered a fascinating or crucial idea? Save the material by pressing the copy-paste buttons.
These limitless opportunities for social and collaborative learning are major selling factors for the mobile learning strategy. These methods or pillars of mobile learning will undoubtedly increase participation in mLearning experiences.
So let’s examine in greater detail the five different ways that mobile learning can increase employee engagement:
A Customized Educational Experience
Employees today seek a more meaningful learning experience that goes beyond mindless memorization. A task that is easily accomplished with mobile learning. With mLearning, you can provide learners with training modules that can be viewed in smaller chunks, at the time they most require it.
Mobile learning gives workers the option to pick and choose the content that is most pertinent to their employment and useful to them while ignoring the rest, much like a basket of ingredients. The result is a training program that is specifically designed for each employee’s needs while simultaneously advancing corporate learning goals.
Employees today like to pick their work style, their learning style, and their learning schedule. That’s exactly what mobile training provides. Mobile phones are excellent because, well, they’re mobile. This implies that training materials can be downloaded and finished by employees at their personal convenience and speed. They can decide to learn while they are engaged, motivated, and in a setting that best satisfies their learning requirements. Additionally, most workers find that learning at their own speed is less demanding.
Teamwork And Effectively Communicating
Humans have always needed contact, and this need is timeless. Before we can have a feeling of belonging and involvement, we must first feel socially linked to our colleagues. Therefore, using smartphones as a device for communications and collaboration during learning is necessary to increase employee engagement via mobile training.
Employees can learn collectively, exchange ideas, and trade experiences through chat forums and discussion groups. Workers receive timely information on the gadgets they are already monitoring every ten minutes thanks to calendars, push alerts, and reminders. Also, it keeps everyone on the team informed and moving forward with the necessary training.
Recognizing And Instant Reaction
When it comes to boosting employee engagement using mobile training, real-time recognition, as well as feedback, are crucial. Features that allow regular knowledge tests are frequently included in mobile training. Employees can assess their progress and determine which areas require additional time or practice.
Badges and leaderboards are examples of gamification tools that provide instant achievement recognition. Furthermore, peer-to-peer evaluations and rankings for specific activities or projects offer a more intimate chance to receive feedback.
Overall, immediate feedback and acknowledgment are fostered through mobile learning, which makes learners joyful and more willing to give their best to their learning and work.
Chance Of Real-Time Training
Human attention spans are getting shorter, but one may be able to hold their focus for longer than one may think. This is why they are more likely to become sidetracked when reading through lengthy lectures or training manual pages. In fact, it’s likely that fantasizing will hinder them from recalling little of the things they’ve heard and read. Even worse, they won’t recall the details of how or what they ought to include in their job applications.
Mobile training is helpful for individuals with relatively shorter attention spans. Employees can access the training material in small sections and use their newly acquired skills and knowledge within the organization right away.
Mobile learning is a great method that enables learners to undergo a fun learning process with utmost flexibility, which increases employee engagement and significantly boosts their performance, thereby leading to an increased return on investment with respect to training.
We hope this article helps you gain knowledge on ways of using mobile learning to enhance employee engagement and boost their performance.
Freight shipping companies play an important role in moving cargo from one point to another and ensuring that both the cargo and its owners’ interests are properly safeguarded. Unfortunately, freight shipping companies are also vulnerable to many common mistakes that could potentially lead to serious problems down the road.
By learning about these common pitfalls from the most reputed Los Angeles movers at Moving APT and how they can be avoided, you can make sure that your shipping needs are met by an experienced and competent company that will give you value for your money without making mistakes that could end up costing you more later on.
Not selecting the right carrier type
Just about every freight shipping company has its unique requirements for the goods they will ship. That’s why it’s important that you do your research and make sure you know what those requirements are so that you can be prepared. For example, some carriers require palletized goods while others only accept containerized shipments, yet others are not able to transport goods over a certain weight or height.
Failing to select the right freight shipping options
Freight shipping options can be overwhelming, but if you’re not sure which route is right for you, use the following information as a guide. Make sure to review the aforementioned options so that you can choose the best choice for your business’s needs.
(1) Use an online freight calculator to estimate what your shipment will cost.
(2) If possible, do some research about which shippers provide door-to-door service at no additional charge.
(3) You may want to consider using a freight forwarder to take care of all the details involved with international shipments.
(4) Review any broker’s policies before using them to make sure they are compatible with your company’s needs.
Confusing customs clearance with customs brokerage
Since Customs Brokers take care of all the tedious details associated with shipping goods across international borders, companies who want to avoid costly errors and delays hire a Customs Broker. Customs brokerage is one service offered by freight shipping companies.
In this case, it is the company’s responsibility to know if they need customs brokerage services or not (the broker will let them know). It can be difficult for a non-professional to tell which process they need when looking at complicated shipping documents.
No matter what your budget is, you should make sure to choose the best service with the best rates rather than opting for what seems cheap. There are many factors to consider that make all carriers unique, which means they might not offer identical prices across the board. Think about what you need from your company as well as what kind of services they provide and go from there!
Choosing a carrier solely based on customer reviews
Look for customer reviews on Google Plus or Yelp. A carrier that has high ratings is more likely to be a company that doesn’t cut corners, so you can trust them with your shipment. If a company offers lower rates, be wary as they could have other ways to make up the difference–for example by cutting corners on safety standards or overloading trucks. Also, watch out for fraud. You may not know it but if you book your freight shipping through a 3rd party website then there’s a chance that someone else (i.e., fraudsters) will take off with your money without fulfilling their end of the bargain.
Finally, never ship anything internationally without first comparing prices from multiple carriers since some companies charge per kilogram rather than per package and this could quickly add up. You will need to book a freight service provider for several reasons and making sure that you make the right choice is important. These common mistakes are easy to commit and hence you must be watchful for them.
Social responsibility is a way to ensure good business practices and do what is suitable for your employees, staff, and customers.
More and more businesses understand that their role in society goes beyond their product offerings and can profoundly impact the culture.
Since most companies significantly impact the environment, from having on-premise workers that use resources to travel to and from work to the natural resources used in producing and maintaining their goods, taking a socially responsible approach to work is gaining attraction.
For example, some industries are realizing the impacts of their products on the environment and have taken business-conscious decisions that benefit the environment without impacting their bottom lines.
For example, Starbucks announced in 2020 that it is shifting its company philosophy to become a resource-positive business meaning it will look to gut its carbon, water, and waste footprints. The goal is to cut the impact of its products and services by half.
One area where Starbucks is lowering its impact on the environment is its Carbon Neutral Green Coffee initiative that strives to conserve water usage in processing by 50% by 2030.
Additionally, Starbucks has announced that they will begin to implement a strategy to eliminate their single-use cups and begin to use reusable cups for every store in the next few years.
Also, Starbucks promotes inclusiveness and equality, making it a socially responsible workplace for its employees and customers.
The benefits of being a socially responsible business like Starbucks are increasing brand exposure and, more importantly, improving its brand reputation.
As seen by Starbucks, providing for a Corporate Socially Responsible (CSR) business offers various advantages. In fact, a CSR philosophy can;
Empower company employees to take advantage of corporate resources to do good in their communities
Bolster a company’s image and build upon the brand
Boost employee morale and improve productivity
Increase customer loyalty and retention
Of course, not all CSR philosophies deal with environmental or social causes. Moreover, in some cases, being legally compliant, such as with various, constantly evolving Russian sanctions or sanctions about other geopolitical events, is essential for legal and perception reasons.
Whether your company is looking to make a positive impact on the communities, you serve or taking a more productive role in changing the corporate environment for the positive, embracing CSR has a distinct advantage on customers’ perceptions.
While there are plenty of advantages, especially toward the long-term reputation of the company brand, many in ownership believe that adopting a CSR will hurt their bottom line.
Contrary to many business owners’ thoughts, adopting a socially responsible attitude doesn’t have to cost a lot of money.
While some owners think that lack of resources or financial impacts is a driver in adopting a CSR, the reality is that it is often a lack of long-term vision about the sustainability and advantages to their brand that limits ownership from adopting these new philosophies and practices.
In the example of Starbucks, there are some financial investments toward their decisions for a more socially responsible, positive-impact direction. But the trade-offs in terms of brand reputation and customer loyalty far exceed those investments.
One of the more significant ways that a little forward investment can positively impact your margins is that by adopting a CSR into your business, you will dramatically improve employee morale.
Lower turnover is essential in industries that require customers to feel familiarity and to build a sense of community, such as in service industry positions like Starbucks.
In B2B and manufacturing, creating a positive environment and culture aligned with larger social priorities lowers turnover, a significant driver in costs increasing due to the lack of productivity associated with employee loss.
Employees leave a company causing it to reduce productivity, decrease co-workers’ morale, and increase the cost of hiring and training replacements.
Recognizing the advantages of adopting a Corporate Socially Responsible philosophy provides your company with a lot of positives. For one, you increase company morale and decrease costly turnover while boosting productivity.
Second, adopting a CSR that aligns with the more significant social trends puts your brand into better alignment and increases its reputation as a result. Companies that have better reputations tend to create more loyal brand customers, which in turn, increases long-term revenue.
Effectively handling your finances is one of the most crucial components of any business. There are many different ways a business can do this, but more often than not, it’s achieved through a process known as spend management.
This important process is vital to your company’s success, and due to this, it’s essential you know exactly what it is and how it works.
Read on, where we’ll explain what spend management in your business is, and how it can be optimized to work most effectively within your company.
What is spend management?
Spend management is a process which involves the complete handling of every payment and transaction which occurs across your entire business.
In every company, there are often many different transactions taking place on a daily basis, all within multiple areas of the business. For instance, this could range from subscription services and resources, to travel expenses and business lunches.
With all these payments being made, it’s important to have an efficient system of monitoring, tracking, and controlling each one.
With spend management, the relevant team – most often the finance department – will consistently record every single transaction made, and log all the surrounding data. This can include how much was spent, what was purchased, and what company received the payment.
To optimize the process, many businesses use spend management software. This is an expert tool which handles all your spend management for you, all within one central platform.
Many of the common practices in spend management, such as recording payments, logging receipts, etc., are completed for you. The software also adds additional features to help you make the process more effective – spend controls, insights, and much more.
How does spend management work?
Spend management can be conducted in a variety of ways, but as mentioned above, none are arguably as effective as using spend management software. Here’s some of the ways spend management software can work to fully optimize your business:
Automated and streamlined processes Spend management software can offer your business a more streamlined process for handling payments, through the many automated features it provides.
For instance, you can set up automated approval processes within areas of your business. This will allow for any transactions which fit within a certain criteria to be automatically approved, without the need for your intervention.
This can be to approve transactions from certain teams, or payments of a certain limit, or within a particular period.
This will help your spend management process – and your company overall – run more efficiently.
More control over spending The software can also work to give you more control over how your company spends money, down to every individual transaction. It does this through a range of spend controls it offers you.
For example, one of the features you can incorporate into your process is applying spend limits to payments.
This will mean that any transactions which exceed a specified limit will be automatically prevented, and you’ll also be alerted of the transaction.
This can help you better control how much is being spent in your business – between different teams, for instance – and ensure all necessary budgets are being kept to.
Useful spend insights Spend management software can also provide you with highly useful insights into your entire corporate spend, to make you aware of all the different ways you could be more cost-efficient.
For example, the software can offer you alternatives to certain payments your business is making regularly, which will be much cheaper to pay for, but offer a similar service. This could be a particular software your company uses.
With this information, you’ll constantly have a full picture of how efficiently your business is spending money, and more importantly, all the different ways this spending can be optimized.
Now that you know what spend management is, and how this expert software can help you conduct it more effectively, you should consider the benefits of implementing it into your own company approach.