row of different marques of commercial vehicles or vans for retail sale on a motor dealers lot all logos removed

Renting vs Buying Transport Equipment For Your Business: A List Of Pros And Cons

There are many businesses out there that rely on the use of transport equipment. While there are some that invest the money into buying and owning the equipment themselves, there are others that choose to rent what they need from a company such as http://www.rentco.com.au/portfolio/trucks/. If you are on the fence about which idea is the best for your company, here is a list of pros and cons that should make things clear for you.

BUYING PROS

– If you buy transport equipment, it will always be available when you need it. There will be no need to call anyone and ask about availability. You can have what you need at your fingertips at all times.

– There are some expenses pertaining to the equipment that you will be able to deduct on your taxes. For instance, if there is something that needs to be fixed, the cost of repairs can be written off as a business expense.

BUYING CONS

– You will have to invest all of the money for the equipment right now, or at least come up with a sizable down payment. If you don’t have a lot of money on hand, this is not the best financial position to be in.

– Once the equipment is no longer usable, you will have to figure out how to dispose of it. This is not something that you can toss away with the regular trash. You may have to invest a great deal of time and/or money in order to get rid of it.

LEASING PROS

– If you do not use this equipment all the time, leasing is a good idea. This is because you can use it for a short time, return it to the owner and avoid having to pay a ton of money for something that is not in use.

– When the equipment has issues and there needs to be repairs made, that is something the owner will have to deal with. You will not have to worry about the costs associated with trying to get it back in working order.

LEASING CONS

– While leasing costs may seem pretty reasonable at the beginning, the reality is that all of this will add up. By the time you pay to use something for several years, you will have invested so much that it could have been possible to buy your own.

– There may be times when you need the equipment and someone else is leasing it. This can hold you up, which means that time and revenue can be lost. You will have no control over who leases it when you do not have it in your possession.

If you are the owner of a company that needs to have transport equipment available to them, you may have been wondering whether buying or leasing would be the best option for your business. Now that you have all of this information available, your responsibility is to ponder each point and make a decision that would be in the best interest of your business.

cheerful business team winning an award for their performance

How to Use Awards or Trophies to Improve Morale At The Workplace

Low morale in the workplace can be very detrimental in terms of productivity. There are numerous ways to improve employee morale like increasing the workers’ involvement and building their self-esteem. Everyone loves it when their achievements are recognized and it’s always more meaningful if another individual recognizes their success on their behalf. There are some simple ways to do both at once and this article highlights some ideas that you can incorporate into your company.

Project Specific Recognition

When employees are working against the clock to finish a project, it can be hard to take a step back and recognize the excellent job the team did. While it is possible that the supervisor has scheduled the time to debrief, it is ideally essential to make time or celebration and bragging. Utilize this opportunity to recognize any employee who came out as a leader or delivered more than expected. You can utilize a nomination method or ask senior leaders to recognize the superstars.

Shout Outs

It can be hard to call this one an award, but shout-outs are usually effective at empowerment and are easy to implement, particularly if you have a weekly or monthly employee meeting. Simply use the first few or last minutes to open up the floor for the staff to recognize each other’s work, contributions, and support. Shout-outs are more frequent and verbal and there is no limit to giving them. If you do not usually have an all-employee meeting, you can use the organization’s bulletin board and give slips of paper or post-its that allow the staff to publicly thank each other. If your organization has a printed or digital newsletter, shout outs can be posted through this medium.

Employee of the Month

This is a tried and tested way to encourage healthy competition between worker, while still incentivizing the entire workplace to increase their levels of productivity.

Neatest Desk Award

You might toss this one under the silly category, but is an extremely helpful tool in the search for an orderly and clean workplace. You can make a monthly competition and incentivize the employees with a small gift card or free lunch.

Innovation Awards

Most people prefer to work in a place that fosters creativity. So, encourage the workers to think in a different manner by introducing an innovation award. This award can recognize anything the implementation of a more effective recycling program to an idea of a new product. If it is taken seriously and accompanied by a substantial prize, an innovation award can shape the culture of your company.

Workplace awards can recognize almost anything that makes the workplace a better place, from cleanliness to project management and they can be in the form of gift cards to trophies (check out www.trophyspecialists.com.au for ideas!). The secret is to identify key values that are essential to the organization and find fun, creative and even silly methods to encourage your staff to exemplify them.

The point is that Recognition, awards or trophies, even if they appear to be frivolous can help boost morale, engage employees and increase productivity.

Students

The Benefits For Business Owners Of An External Training Company

There are a lot of business owners who worry about using an external training company instead of an internal trainer. There are actually a number of benefits that come with the use of an external training company that all business owners should know about. These benefits will show that there is no reason for business owners to be wary of external training companies.

Trained Professionals

When you work with a reputable external training company, you will ensure that you are working with trained professionals. When you hire your own trainer, you have to believe what their resume tells you and you will never know if they are the best at their job. Training companies will know what they need to look for in trainers and will ensure that the trainers they hire have the correct knowledge and skills.

The professional working with a training company will also be qualified to teach. This is important because not everyone is qualified to teach and will not have the right manner to impart knowledge. The trained professionals hired by training companies will know how to adapt their training models to your business needs and how to determine if your employees are retaining the knowledge.

A Lack Of Knowledge About Your Business

A lot of business owners believe that the lack of knowledge about your business that training companies have is a weakness. The truth is that this can be a benefit to the training. When you have a trainer who has in-depth knowledge of your company, assumptions will be made during the training. The trainer could believe that the employees all have the same knowledge that they have and this is not always true.

When the trainer does not have any knowledge of your business workings, you will not have to worry about these assumptions. The trainer will also be able to explain the use of the software or skills that they are showing in a way that all of your employees will understand. They will also be more objective when questions are raised by your employees during the training.

You Will Save Money

Business owners are always looking for ways to save money and they often believe that external training companies will be too large an expense. The truth is that hiring an external training company will actually save you money when compared to hiring an internal trainer. This is due to the fact that you will only have to pay the external company when you need training.

When you have an internal trainer, you will need to pay them a salary even when they do not have to train anyone. This can be a large expense for smaller businesses which can be avoided by using an external company. Most external training companies will only charge you for the actual training that they complete and will not require a retainer. When looking at the overall costs, this will be better for the bottom line of your company.

Professional teacher showing carpentry machinery to students

Tips For Building A Strong Team Culture In Your Workplace

Teamwork is something that could make or break your business. This is why you need to have a strong team culture in your workplace. We spoke to an expert HR consultant from Perth to find out how to achieve this. There are a number of tips that you should consider which will help you create this culture and reap the benefits that it provides.

Team Culture Starts At The Beginning

There is no point in hiring people who cannot work as part of a team if you want to have a team culture in your workplace. This is why you need to start building your team from the very beginning. This means that you need to hire people who fit the team culture of your business and will be able to work with your other employees.

To do this, you need to use interviews and pre-employment assessments to determine if someone’s personality fits your business culture. You need to look for people who are open to cooperating with others and willing to listen to what other people have to say. This will play a large role in the success of your team culture.

Hold Teams Accountable

When you create teams in your workplace, they need to be held accountable for the results of their work. To do this, you need to have clear team and individual expectations set out. Everyone in the team needs to be aware of the fact that the result of the team’s work is what counts.

There are many companies that introduce reward systems to help with accountability. If the team is able to achieve their goals, they will be rewarded for this. You should also look at individual recognition based on the contributions the person has made to the team effort. This will ensure that everyone works in the team and not only certain people.

Keep Communication Open

One of the most important aspects of teamwork is good communication. This means that you need to have good communication channels open for the team members and management. The teams in your workplace should be able to have open communication with each other and with their managers.

A great way to improve team culture in your company is to solicit ideas and suggestions from your employees. This will help you determine if there are any issues that you need to address and find out what your employees feel the best solution is. This communication also allows team members to give suggestions on the best ways to achieve their team’s goals.

Resolve Team Conflicts Quickly

You will not have a strong team culture in your workplace if there is conflict within the teams. If there are problems with certain individuals in a team, you will need to work to correct this. One of the best ways to do this is through frank communication with the person to find out what the root of the problem is.

If you find that some members of the team do not fit the team mold, you might have to replace them. The person that you replace them with should be someone who is going to protect the integrity of the team. Of course, when replacing an individual, you need to be careful with how you handle this.

business woman using tablet computer and email icons

Why Your Business Should Have An Email Filtering Service

Email filtering is an efficient service that helps filter out unwanted spam emails from your inbox. Although most spam emails may be harmless, some can be quite risky particularly if they find their way in your inbox and are clicked on. Hackers and other malicious people may use phishing emails to dupe you into clicking to links, which under instances gives them access to your private information, network, or even infect the entire network with malware. Having an email filtering service (either in-house or cloud-based) is therefore recommended for all businesses and companies.

Benefits of Using an Email Filtering Service

1. Reduce server load and data volumes

According to research, 7 out of 10 emails sent to company emails are spam. Unless the company has an email filtering service, these junk emails can cause an unexpected load on the server. With such high amounts of junk mails, email volumes can easily spike making it almost impossible for the mail server to process each in time. This could also cause you to spend more money on internet and mail services as well. Nevertheless, investing in a robust email filtering and processing service can help keep unwanted emails out, hence reduced server load.

2. Minimize spam, malware, and virus exposure

Picking real emails from a long list of junk mails is not only tiring but also leads to massive time wastage. Nevertheless, having a filtering system in place can help reduce the time you spend going through emails. In addition to this, applying local filters can help improve efficiency as well as reduce the risk of clicking on junk emails with malicious content inside. About 90% of all junk mail contain attachments, most of which once downloaded to your computer can infect the entire network with a virus, malware, and such. An efficient filtering system can therefore help reduce such risks effectively.

3. Improved large-scale email sending performance

Sending large batches of emails to email subscribers and other interested parties can be quite a challenge if your mail server is laden with junk emails. It becomes even more difficult if your mail server has been exposed to the internet. With a mail filter in place, sending large volumes of emails is as easy as clicking a button. The mail server will have enough resources and capacity to process and send out these emails successfully without any glitches. Another advantage of this service is that it prevents malicious individuals from injecting harmful code to your servers.

4. Reduces risk of being blacklisted

Without an email filtering service, your mail server will be prone to hacking and even be unable to detect malicious content send through it. Most servers will blacklist any server recognized to send malicious code or emails, which can be bad for your business. With your company mail server blacklisted, it will be almost impossible for recipients using blacklist monitors to receive your emails. This could translate to low performance. Nevertheless, having a filtering service in place can help prevent possible infections from the network, thus a reduced risk of an attack.

It only takes one infected machine for an entire company network to be compromised. To be on the safe side, have a trustworthy, robust, and reliable email filtering in place.

Unrecognizable senior women working outside in her garden

Importance Of Ensuring Your Employees Are Sun-Safe When Working Outdoors

Exposure to UV radiation (direct sunrays) can have many adverse effects on your skin and general health. For starters, UV rays are carcinogenic, hence can cause skin conditions and even cancer. As an employer, it’s essential to ensure your employees are well protected from these harmful rays especially while working outdoors. Anyone working outdoors is at the highest risk of UV radiation, hence should put on protective gear or apply sunscreen creams to reduce its effect.

Potential Risks of Working Outdoors in the Sun

1. Skin Cancer: Working under the sun without any protective gear puts workers in direct exposure to UV radiation. According to the Cancer Society, these rays cause squamous cell and basal skin cancer. Prolonged exposure to the same may also cause the deadliest known type of skin cancer, melanoma.

2. Eye Problems: Aside from skin cancer, direct exposure to the unbearable heat of the sun (between 10 am and 4 pm) is known to cause macular degeneration, cataracts, and conjunctiva. The cell degeneration becomes worse as one continues to work under the sun without any protection. Employees with such problems will need specialized care, which also means their output will be significantly affected.

3. Weakened Immune System: Exposure to UV rays takes a toll on the skin’s natural defenses, which under most instances goes way beyond the immune system. The development of cancerous cells also leads to a weaker immune system, which leaves the individual at a higher risk of contracting other infections.

From the facts outlined above, it is evident that leaving your employees to work directly under the sun puts their health at risk. This can have various implications for the company too. For instance, these employees will need additional medical cover to get treatment for these conditions. Since this is a workplace acquired condition, the company may have to take care of the patient. This can be quite draining on the company’s finances.

In addition to protecting the employee’s health, ensuring they are sun-safe also reduces the risk of having lawsuits your way. Affected employees may choose to sue the company for exposing them to such conditions knowingly. This again could have a negative impact on your company’s image.

How to Ensure Your Employees Are Sun-Safe

1. Educate the employees: Have the employees sensitized on the effects of UV exposure and how to keep themselves protected from such. Some of the best ways to reduce exposure include applying sunscreen, putting on protective clothing, and sunglasses.

2. Switch schedules: If the employees have to work during the day, then ensure much of the work is done outside times when UV rays are strongest. Times between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. are a lot risky to work outdoors, hence should be avoided.

3. Beware of the environment: Even with protective gear and sunscreen on, working on specific surfaces increased the risk of UV exposure. Some of the surfaces to watch out for include snow, sand, water, and glass.

4. Schedule regular checkups at a skin cancer clinic in Perth. This will ensure that any issues are identified early on and treated appropriately.

These are just but a few tips on how to ensure your employees are sun-safe. While this could save your company some money in the long run, the employees’ health won’t be at risk either.

Marketing word cloud, business concept

Should You Be Focusing On Online Or Offline Marketing?

While online and offline marketing share many of the same principles, they do have different approaches and produce different results. When you own a business, you need to consider if you should be focusing on online or offline marketing. There are a number of points that you should consider when determining this.

The Reach Of The Marketing

Online marketing has a greater reach than offline marketing because anyone with the internet will be able to access this. While this increased reach might seem like the best solution for your business, you have to consider who your target market is. If you are looking to only connect with people in your local area, international online marketing will not be the best solution.

When looking at the reach of your marketing, you also need to consider the age bracket and profession of your target audience. Younger people tend to respond better to online marketing, while other people respond to traditional offline marketing. It is important that you keep this in mind when you choose a marketing method.

The Costs Of Marketing

If you want to have success with offline marketing, you will generally have to spend a significant amount more than you would for online marketing. Online marketing is generally more cost-effective which is important for businesses with small marketing budgets. Offline marketing generally combines radio, TV and print adverts where you pay for visibility. The larger the print advert or the better the timeslot of your TV advert, the more it will cost and you could blow your entire budget on a single advert.

The cost of using online marketing methods will vary depending on the method you use. If you are looking at SEO, your costs will primarily be related to hosting and website design. You can create a viral post without any monetary outlay. However, if you are looking at paid advertising you will need to pay, but this amount varies depending on the platform and the parameters of the advert.

Conversion To Sales

All of the marketing that you complete is looking to convert visits or exposure into sales. When using online marketing, it is often easier for customers to see your advert and then buy your product or get in touch with you. Online advertising helps with impulse decisions as customers generally take the first steps to buying when they click on your advert.

Offline marketing works differently as the viewer will have to take the time to search for your company or visit your physical store. This generally gives them time to think about the purchase and they could decide not to follow through with the purchase. This is why many marketers look at combining some form of online ease of access with their offline marketing.

Online marketing also has the advantage of boosting engagement with your customers. If you are targeting a younger demographic, this is important because research has shown that they are more likely to buy from brands that engage with them online.

3 ways you can retain your existing customers

People are racing to get new customers for their business. But you shouldn’t forget that your existing customers. You should try to retain them as it is cheaper than getting new ones. With existing customers, you have earned their trust already. They have spent money on you and will be willing to spend more if you can take care of them properly. Here are three ways you can retain your existing customers.

1. Upsell

If you have a product or service that satisfies the need of your customer, then the customer will consider buying your product or service before going anywhere else. So, once you have a customer for your product or service, you can upsell. For example, if they have booked an online course with you, then you can offer them other courses that are related to the previous course.

2. The loyalty program

You can start a loyalty program. You can give some good rewards to customers for joining your loyalty program. This way your customers won’t go to your competitors and stay with your company for their needs.

3. Customer service

Providing good customer service is very important for a business. It’s required for a business to grow and increase customer base. It is also important for retaining existing customers. You should provide satisfied service to your existing customers all the time to retain them.

These strategies will help you to retain your existing customers. Having lots of loyal customers will improve the brand image of your company and more people will be interested in your brand.

4 ways to stay competitive in the market

The competition is fierce now. Businesses often find it hard to deal with competition. But competition actually improves your performance and takes you to a new level. Here are some ways you can remain competitive.

Don’t copy others

You shouldn’t copy others. You should go down your own path. You should try to implement your ideas and not that of others. Your competitor may have a high budget and lots of employees. You might not have a good budget, so the competitor’s strategy won’t work in your case.

Don’t ignore competition

You should keep track of your competitors. They may come up with products that are better than yours. You should then try to improve your product or service and become better than them. Keeping up with the competition can improve the quality of your products or services.

Don’t underestimate your competitor

We usually think of the big competitors. But the small competitors can even beat you in the competition. They can outperform you and get a bigger customer base. You shouldn’t underestimate the small competitors.

Don’t use any unethical means

The competition will always be there in business. That doesn’t mean that you have to get dirty to survive the game. You shouldn’t do unethical things like stealing your competitors’ list. You should be honest always.

There will be always competition in business. You shouldn’t give up or be disappointed. You must take competition positively. Competition can help you to be better at your business.

Top 4 reasons to diversify your workforce

Diversity is required in a company. Diversity can build a better consumer brand and improve the performance of your employees as well.  Here are some of the reasons why you should diversify your workforce.

Bilingual workers increase productivity

You should add people of different backgrounds in your workforce. This will increase the chance of having employees who speak multiple languages. Bilingual workers can earn 10% more every year than those speaking only one language. A bilingual employee can negotiate better with clients. It is possible to increase client base with the help of bilingual workers.

They are more productive

When the workforce consists of a diverse group of people, they will know new ways of tackling problems. You will have a more productive team this way. You should separate men and women evenly and get better results.

They are more creative

Diverse teams are more creative. New ideas will be generated from people of different backgrounds. Creative teams will produce better results and boost your branding.

Helps to avoid lawsuits

There is discrimination in many workplaces. By hiring people from various backgrounds you can lower your chances of being accused of any kind of discrimination.

Many companies are adopting this strategy of hiring a diverse group of people. It is proven that companies become more successful when the team consists of people from different backgrounds. If you own a business, you should also make up a team of a diverse group of employees to be more productive and successful.