Advancing technology is a major part of running a business

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Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question,“what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

Technology is a major part of running a business- now more than ever. Various pieces of software have been created to help businesses complete tasks efficiently. If you aren’t using the latest and greatest technology, your company can quickly fall behind in productivity.

Powerful Computers
Many computer stores give special offers for businesses buying in bulk so don’t be afraid to ask. There are certain things you’ll want to look for when purchasing business computers. First, figure out your specific needs. A solopreneur photographer will have very different needs from a full-time yoga instructor. Second, review tips for choosing a new computer, look for an excellent processor and high RAM also give a boost in performance. Take a look at the best business computers for an idea of what to get.

High-Speed Internet
To get the most out of your fast-running computers, you’ll want employees to have the fastest internet possible. Speed is important when looking into internet providers, but what’s more important is uptime. You want a reliable internet connection that won’t go down often. Check Internet Service Providers in your area and look for high-speed fibre optic broadband. Fast, reliable internet is crucial for your business, so go for the best package you can.

IT Experts
To make sure your technological features run well, you’ll want someone capable of handling them. IT Experts can ensure the internet stays up, the computers stay clean, and help you and employees with any issues. Some people prefer to hire IT staff, but it’s can be more economical and practical to use tech support services. This way you get the help and advice of multiple knowledgeable IT experts. IT services can help you reduce downtime, secure your computers, and fix day-to-day issues. IT is vital for keeping a business running smoothly, so you’ll want one to keep your technology in shape.

Cloud Computing
Cloud computing is a term used to describe a range of internet software. Making use of cloud storage allows your business to back up data to a reliable internet-based vault.  There are also cloud programs on the web designed for helping companies. For example, many people turn to Google Docs for creating work that is easy to share and collaborate on with co-workers. Cloud computing is getting more popular, so it’s worth using for your business.

The Best Software
You’ll want to set up your computers with the right software for employees to do their jobs. Microsoft Office is considered a staple for business operations. You’ll also want fast browsers- Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome do the job well. Other software you use can depend on what your company does. If you deal in creating graphical material, Adobe Creative Cloud is an excellent package. There’s also software which can handle general business operations, such as accounting and backing-up data. Find the best business software that can assist your company with its daily activities.

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Five tips to help you rise above your competition

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Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question,
what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article
written specifically for our readers.

Keeping up with competition is crucial to a successful business. Competition encourages companies to offer the best possible service and continue to improve. However, competition isn’t just about getting more customers. You also want to attract the best employees, have a higher market share and have the best image in your field. Overall, you want people to think of your company before any others when thinking of your sector. Here are five tips to help you rise above your competition.

  1. Reach Out To New Markets Increasing your target demographics can boost your business reach. Make sure you are doing this strategically. For example, if you run a women’s fashion store, you can beat out competing stores by also offering children’s clothing. When thinking of which store to go to, mothers will be much more likely to choose yours. But if your target demographic isn’t mothers, offering children’s clothing may alienate your customer base. It’s all about finding out what competing stores don’t do that makes sense for your business. Find gaps in the market and be the first to fill them.
  2. Get The Best Employees You will want the best employees in the field. Excellent employees will drive your business to be the best that it can be. The highest salaries and/or best benefits will often attract the most valuable employees. You can use the Croner salary benchmarking survey to find out what other businesses in your field are offering. You may have to pay more in salary or benefits, but the trade-off is usually more dedicated employees. 
  3. Offer Better Service Customer service is huge for retaining a customer base. Delivering high-quality customer service should always be a high priority for your company. Excellent service can include fair return policies, customer loyalty rewards, and friendly customer service reps. If customers from your competing business are unhappy with the service there, they’ll turn to you instead. Keeping customers happy will keep them coming to you over the competitors.
  4. Build On Your Strengths To be the best in your sector, you have to clarify what you offer that competitors don’t. For many businesses, this means offering the lowest prices. Supermarkets often offer price-matching and compare their prices with competitors in advertisements. You don’t have to be the cheapest in the field. You can focus on having the highest-quality products, or offering the best customer service. Figure out what areas you beat competitors in, and build on those strengths.
  5. Utilize Marketing Marketing your organization is crucial to beating the competition. For example, being the cheapest taxi service in town means nothing if no one knows about it. Get your name out there and develop your reputation. There are many ways to market and advertise your business. Look into modern marketing techniques. Marketing can quickly help you get ahead of competing companies.

Three elements of business security to consider

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Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question,
what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article
written specifically for our readers.

If you’re moved away from a home office and or are ready to have a storefront, make sure you’re thinking about security. It’s much easier to implement security protocol from the onset than it is to go back and redo everything later. Plus, if you have good security practices in place from the beginning you are less likely to have security issues.

Smart Locks
Wouldn’t it be awesome if your business had a drawbridge? You could simply pull up the welcome mat when annoying customers with complaints came knocking. Smart locks aren’t as impressive as a drawbridge, but they are far more practical. With smart locks, you can control exactly who can and cannot enter your place of work. Employees can be given codes and clients can be accepted through intercom systems. As well as this, when you’re not in the office, your business is more secure.

Alarm Systems
The latest alarm systems can be set up and installed with certain built-in mechanisms. For instance, you can decide under what circumstance it goes off and who it alerts. You might want a loud alarm for all to hear. Or, a silent alarm that only alerts you and perhaps the authorities. This might be best if you want to catch thieves or trespassers red-handed. For more info, have a look at different systems online. 

Security Cameras
Security cameras have three purposes. The first is to spot potential threats or dangers. There might be someone wandering around your business property who shouldn’t be there. A security camera feed can alert you of this so you can have them removed. Second, a security camera can provide you with evidence for a court case or for the police. Third, security cameras can act as deterrents. People are less likely to steal or damage your business if they know they are being watched. Make sure you always comply with state and local laws when setting up and using a security camera.

Business Stress Solutions

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Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question,what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers. 

Everyone knows that running a business isn’t easy, but that still never fully prepares you. You might find that keeping your new business afloat is proving more difficult than you expected. You might be under a lot of stress and anxiety. There are a few things you should consider if you are having trouble moving your business forward. 

You might not think you’re ready for a business partner, but then again, you might not be thinking of a partner correctly. Think of a business partner as someone who can help decrease the stress of running a business. A partner can help ease the workload or the financial burden. It can help you see solutions or options that you missed or didn’t see before. 

Another option is to try to digitize as many elements of your business as possible. This can help you be more efficient and better able to analyze your business practices. There are a lot of options for digitizing the business processes and procedures. Take some time to research your needs and see what options are a good fit. 

While there’s no way to make money grow on trees, you may want to consider adding to your cashflow with a loan or establishing credit for your business. Of course you should absolutely consult with an accountant before making any significant change to your books.

Organization is pivotal when you’re trying to run a business and do all of the other things that make you, you. You likely have a lot of data and information that has to be sorted, emails that need responding to and everything else that makes a business run. Try to be more organized and find a system that works for you. If carving out chunks of time to do specific tasks is what works, do it without apologies or regrets. If keeping a running list of what needs done helps, do that. Figure out a system that works for you. You can also consider hiring a personal assistant to help you.

 

 

4 Considerations When You Are Starting A Business

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 Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question,“what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers

Anyone who has ever thought about starting a business will know it is about much more than just a great idea. There are four business elements that you should make sure you’ve thought through as you’re starting your business.  

  1. Office – Even as a solopreneur, your business needs a central hub. You should carefully consider where your office will be and what it will be like. Your office space impacts your productivity and can ease or contribute to your stress level. If you’re ready to move out of your home office, you can consider a shared space or even renting through a company like www.hoxtonmix.com.

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  1. Finances – If you have a plan for your finances from the beginning, you’re already setting yourself up for success. At minimum, take time to review your budget as carefully and as closely as possible. For more on writing a budget, see www.inc.com,
  2. Marketing – All businesses need to find a way to sell their brand as efficiently and effectively as possible (J & A Creative can help). Make sure you know who your ideal client would be. It’s a good idea to set aside some funds early on for your marketing needs. 
  3. People – Once you’ve outgrown solopreneurship, you want to make sure anyone you hire is a good match. It is so essential that you put the necessary effort into hiring the right staff. Ideally, your recruitment process should be one that looks for people who will be an asset to the organization and have qualities such as perseverance and a hard work ethic.