Smart Ways to Reduce Your Small Business Costs

If you are able to reduce costs for your small business, and implement some better processes that cost less and are productive and efficient, then you are onto a winner. You don’t want to cut corners in your small business, but being able to do more for less is one thing that can really help your bottom line, and allows your business to grow. So here are some of the ways that you can work smarter and save, whilst still have a successful business.

Use the Cloud

The tech that you use and the data that you store is all part and parcel of being able to have a productive small business that can work efficiently. Which is where the cloud comes in. The cloud can be self-managed by apps that provide the services, so you can quite easily eliminate or just reduce the need for an in-house IT staff to manage your technology, which can save you quite a bit. You could also look at cloud storage migration so that you can transfer any file or any number of users from one cloud to another easily, safely, and quickly, all without the need of an in-house expert. So for small business owners that want to reduce costs, but without sacrificing doing business and competing in their field, are all using the cloud.

Go Paperless

If your small business isn’t going paperless by now, then you really should look at doing so. Paper, printers, copiers, and ink can all cost quite a lot of money, especially if people are using them daily. Only print or copy what is necessary. Use emails or messenger systems to talk to colleagues and clients, and send invoices and other information digitally. Having information on a computer system, rather than a traditional filing cabinet, can also be a really good thing for your business and for your savings.

Market Online

If you are yet to step into marketing your business online, then you are missing out on a lot potentially. Not to mention it can be a more cost-effective way to market your business. You can get some pretty good results without having to spend too much when you market online. So look at your social media channels or at starting a blog, to get your business out there.

Reduce Debt

Pretty much all businesses are going to have some kind of debt to start with. It may be a bank loan or you may use a business credit card for certain expenses. But with interest rates where they are, you may end up paying more than you planned on if you use credit card debt for small expenses. Pay off as much debt as you can and do so as soon as possible. It isn’t going to be an instant quick fix. But getting in the habit of doing so will make sure that your business has a much better financial future.

As you can see, there are several ways to cut down your spend, but still have a business that is ready to compete and ready to grow and develop.

What Are America’s Most Dangerous Jobs?

Many people work a 9-5 day in an office. But that is not the case for everyone. There are people like builders and painters who work with their hands all day, but there are also some people who put their life on the line every time that they go to work. It is important to research any job and its requirements before you apply. Below you will find some of the most dangerous jobs that a person can do.

Army

The most obvious one and probably the one that most people think of when you say ‘dangerous job’ is the army. From a soldier to a medic, these men and women put their life on the line every day, fighting for the freedom of this country. This job is dangerous because even if you aren’t on the front lines, it doesn’t mean that you are safe. It is possible that an enemy could attack your base or if there are severe weather conditions, these can take a toll on you.

Lumberjack/Logging

The work of a lumberjack is physically demanding and can be extremely dangerous. This is constantly listed as one of the most dangerous jobs in America for a number of reasons. One of these is that they could very easily fall out of trees or high places that they are working. The other is that the workers can often work far away from hospitals, meaning that if they do get injured, it is a race against the clock to get them to a hospital.

Being the most dangerous job in America, it comes with a high death toll. In 2016, Time said that 135.9 workers out of every 100,000 were fatally injured. If a loved one does die while working, you may be entitled to sue for wrongful death. It is always worth contacting the company and listening to their explanation and how they intend to support you, but if this is not satisfactory for you, you should contact a lawyer immediately.

Pilot

There are so many factors that make being a pilot dangerous. Even if we don’t include human error, things such as weather conditions and navigational devices not working correctly can make the job extremely dangerous. If you end up flying blind, you never know what you’re going to run into or where you’re going to end up. This is dangerous as there are other planes flying at the same time and if a pilot can’t tell where he’s going, this could result in a collision.

Roofer

As roofers spend all their time high up, this makes this job dangerous for obvious reasons. If a roofer falls from the building they are working on, the damage is bound to be significant and result in them at least taking some time off work. Some roofs are even unsafe to begin with, meaning that even considering going up there to fix it is dangerous and you are at risk the second you leave the ground.

We hope that this gives you a good idea about what some of the most dangerous jobs are and why they cause so many injuries.

 

3 Habits to Make Your Home-based Job Thrive

There are many key components and factors which contribute to a remote worker, freelancer, or home-based entrepreneur thriving in their chosen field. Some of these are pretty apparent, and others are a bit more tricky to tease out.

For starters, everyone who works from home and isn’t already employed as a permanent staff member, would do well to set up an effective website, network with the right people via services like LinkedIn, and attend trade fairs and conferences.

Branding is another major consideration, and whether people are drawing inspiration from the dax futures symbol or from the golden arches of a certain fast food giant, developing a strong and unique brand, with the right USPs, is essential.

But what about the stuff that you do, each day, away from the watchful gaze of prospective clients and competitors, in order to keep your business ticking neatly along?

Here are some powerful and effective daily habits you should consider adopting for the stability and betterment of your professional life.

Begin each day with a large breakfast

Breakfast has fallen quite strongly out of fashion in recent times, due in no small part to the current popularity of dietary trends such as intermittent fasting — whose advocates suggest that eating in a restricted time window, generally meaning “no breakfast”, is the correct path towards a range of striking health benefits.

While there is research to suggest that fasting may be beneficial for health, most of this looks at occasional, acute, periods of fasting, not fasting as a daily, recurring habit.

It’s important to realise that when you skip breakfast, one of the key things that will happen is that you will skyrocket your production of stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline. This may make you feel a bit elated for a while, but it will also very likely end up causing attention issues, diminished focus, and mood management troubles.

By beginning each day with a large breakfast as soon as you’re up, you blunt the stress hormone response, and fuel your body for the next few hours of steady, consistent work.

End each day with a task review for the next day

Every day should end with you performing a review of the work that needs to be done the next day. As part of this process, you should determine which project, or projects, are going to receive the majority of your attention, as well as create a form of checklist or to-do list, highlighting the key tasks and sub-tasks that you’ll aim to accomplish.

There are various benefits to performing this exercise, but the primary ones are: to reduce the potential risk of procrastination, distraction, and confusion by the next day, and to have a clear action plan in place so that you can hit the ground running instead of wasting an hour or two in the morning getting your bearings.

Wherever possible, commit to a strict end time for work, and relax after

The working-from-home life lends itself to certain unfortunate habits. Perhaps the primary one of these for ambitious, entrepreneurial types, is the ever-present temptation to work at all hours day and night in order to move past the competition.

This may be necessary at times — but it should never be your default, day-to-day approach to your work. Not only will failing to have set work boundaries cause a terrible work-life imbalance, but it will also lead to eventual burnout that can sink your entire career.

Wherever possible, have a strict clocking off time, and stick to it. Once the hour has struck, relax.

Where Do You See Your Work In Ten Years Time?

Whether you’re just starting out with your career, or you’ve been working for more years than you’d like to count, it’s always a good idea to have vision. When you can see ahead into the future, you’re more likely to have more control over your present. And one of the ways that you can do this is through goal setting. Although you may not always achieve every goal because they could change, by having them in the first place, you’re able to make something happen. But what will that something be? To help you figure out exactly what that could be, here are some questions to get you thinking about where you see yourself later on down the line.

Do You Want To Be A CEO?

Maybe you want to be a CEO. Whether you’re in college and looking at starting your own business when you graduate, or you’re climbing the corporate ladder, and you know where you want to end up, seeing yourself as CEO could be a real option. By looking at someone such as Issa Asad Qlink, you’ll see that you can take your skills and passion and turn it into a company that you’ll be CEO of. But you could also think about becoming CEO at a company that you’ve always wanted to work for, or even work at now.

And Make A Lot Of Money?

Or maybe you just want to make a lot of money and it’s as simple as that. When that’s the case, and you are still in college, you should think about the high-paying careers you can aim for to make this happen. Or, if you’re already out there in the working world and you don’t want to retrain, then you need to start putting plans in action to earn a lot more money, or make more money in another way.

Then Retire Early?

And if you want to be able to retire early, you need to start working on this and fast. Because not only do you need to be earning well, you need to be saving that money, and investing in things that are going to only increase in value and give you money back, in order to make that happen.

Do You Want To Make A Difference?

Or maybe you’re not concerned about how much money you make or retiring early, but you do want to be able to make a difference. And when you want to make a difference in the world, you have to be able to put a lot of time and attention into making that happen. Because work isn’t always about you, but it’s about what you can give back. So give this option some serious thought.

Or Build A Lasting Legacy?

Finally, maybe you want to build a legacy. Whether it’s something under your own name, or something for your kids to take over. When you want something that lasts, you need to know how to make the work you put in now keep paying off to make that happen. And this is why goal setting is just so important.

Essential Information for All Employers Looking to Maintain a Content Workforce

Whether your business has one staff member or thousands, it’s absolutely essential that you maintain a content workforce to guarantee the high levels of productivity and brilliant customer service that generate your business’ income. But with so many different responsibilities, few business owners fail to give the necessary amount of thought and support to their staff members to be truly considered good employers. So, if you’ve neglected your staff a little and are looking to start making changes to this, where should you start? Not to worry. That’s where we come in to help. Here are a few areas of employee care that you need to begin focusing on.

Contracts

First things first, if an individual is working for you on a consistent basis, it’s important that you offer them the opportunity to become a full or part time employee, as opposed to being self-employed. Of course, bringing in self employed people for one off jobs is absolutely fine and some individuals simply prefer being self employed. But if these people are working for you most days, then the offer of becoming an employee will go down well. Contracted hours (which go hand in hand with a steady and regular income) will give them a sense of loyalty towards your brand, boosting their efforts to do an effective job.

Wages

By law, all employees should be paid the minimum wage. This goes without saying. But how about offering your staff base a good living wage? This may take a little out of your own profits, but it will draw the best individuals towards your brand and will also ensure that your staff have sufficient cash flow to maintain a good quality of life. This will mean less stresses at home, which means better efforts in the workplace. If your staff are stressed with money worries, their mind is often going to stray from their work, they are less likely to get a good night’s sleep before their shift and they won’t have the positive mindset required to deliver friendly customer service.

Holiday

Staff should be allowed a certain amount of time off from work each year. They can take this in one large chunk or individual days. Try to be as lenient as possible with holidays. Remember that not everyone will want to take a solid week off for a getaway holiday. They may have familial commitments which will mean taking one or two days off for a wedding here and a couple of days for a birthday celebration there. The more lenient you are with negotiating leave, the more likely your staff are to have a stress free time off, rejuvenating themselves and returning to work happy and enthusiastic.

Sick Pay

If employees are too ill to work they can claim statutory sick pay of £89.35 per week. You are obliged to pay this for up to 28 weeks. This is not negotiable and is required by law. However, you are entirely in your right to request sick notes from a doctor as proof that the member of staff is too ill to work. If you receive an appropriate sick note, refrain from acting in an unprofessional or harsh manner to the employee: they are unwell and it is their right to be helped through this time. Remember that stress can enhance and accentuate existing illness, so undue stress for the employee is only likely to prolong the issue.

Bereavement Leave

Needless to say, bereavement leave is an extremely sensitive topic. Surprisingly, many employers lack empathy when negotiating this with their staff. It is essential to remember that staff who are requesting bereavement leave may not be in the best state of mind and you do not want to add to their troubles and worries. Consult the employers bereavement leave guide if you have any concerns or questions.

Maternity and Paternity Leave

Paid maternity leave is standard practice in the U.K. and law has developed to also allocate paid paternity leave too. This allows both parents of a child, regardless of their gender, to spend necessary bonding hours with their child as they enter the world. Statutory maternity leave is 52 weeks: ordinary maternity leave of 24 weeks and additional maternity leave of 26 weeks. Not all new mothers will necessarily wish to take the entire time off, but it should at least be offered. It is recommended that new mothers take at least two weeks off following their child’s birth (four weeks if they are working in a factory). Statutory paternity leave is only two weeks paid leave, however, further paid time off can be issued at your own discretion.

Training

Once all of these areas have been talked through with your employee and outlined in their contract, it’s time to get them to work. Before setting them to the job, encourage them to undertake a training process which will endow them with all of the essential information required to excel in their position. A staff member who is confident in their job role, what is expected of them and how to deliver the best performance are going to be a much better asset to your workforce than someone who is feeling lost and as though they are faking their way through each day.

These are just a few areas of employee care that you should prioritise. Remember that your workforce is the backbone of your company and without them you wouldn’t be able to thrive or make the turnover that you are used to. So treat your employees in the best manner possible. Workers who feel appreciated will take extra steps to ensure that they are providing the best quality work for what they are being paid. Appreciation also encourages staff loyalty, ensuring that professionals stay within your company rather than taking their skills to competitors. Maintaining the same staff members for extended periods of time also saves you from having to take on new staff. This means less cash paid out in advertising positions or using recruitment agencies, less time spent training new members of the team, staff members to bond more effectively and allows you a better understanding of your workforce as a whole.

Taking Better Care Of Your Workers – 5 Top Tips

Every business needs excellent workers at its core to succeed. Your employees might drive the sales. They represent your company in customer service or manage your administration. Each function is essential to keep your business running. Without people power, your business would simply fail. So how do you make sure that your people are performing as well as they should be and can continue to do so for years to come?

Develop Yourself

Looking after your employees should be every manager’s priority. Of course, nobody is born with a built-in ability to manage and lead effectively. It takes time to acquire the experience. It also takes time to acquire to achieve the level of skills you need to be as effective in your role as you want to be. Reflective practice is a great way to self-develop your managerial skills. Beyond this, aim to continue your education and training with continuing professional development.

Keep On Top

Use online and computer-based apps or systems to keep on top of your staff development, vacations, and performance reviews. There are plenty to choose from. Some HR software is available for free, so you can keep on track with the needs of your employees. It helps you to schedule key meetings, and ensure there are enough human resources during holiday periods. Most importantly, it means you can stay on top of your recruitment program and applicant tracking.

Benefits

Many companies review their benefits packages annually. Usually, these are carefully crafted to attract the best talent while caring for the needs of your employees. You might choose to include things like gym memberships if many of your workers are office-based. You might operate a diversity in the workplace policy. Still, many companies find that parents of school-aged children make up the majority of employees. In this case, you might prefer to add childcare support to your package.

Health & Safety

Small startups can’t always afford to hire a specialist health and safety officer. This means it is down to you to ensure all employees are trained and working safely. Accidents and illnesses often have to be reported to official bodies. How do you handle that sensitive administration? How do ensure that employees are in good health and enjoy good levels of fitness? Of course, there are interpersonal clashes that can occur too. The physical and mental well-being of your team should be your utmost priority.

Careers

Ultimately, your employees work for you as part of their career aspirations. Are you supporting their progress or hindering it? If you’re unable to offer continuous professional development, pay rises and promotion, you’ll suffer a high turnover of personnel. The cost of recruitment is much higher than working to retain your current employee list. It’s not just money that motivates a worker to perform well.

Taking better care of your workers should always be on your mind as a manager or business owner. They are the force that drives customers to your business and converts them to revenue. You workforce keep your business running and help you to grow it, develop it, and make it a success. What more can you do today?