You Get What You Inspect

WHAT ARE WE TRAINING FOR?


“Knowledge has to be improved, challenged, and increased constantly, or it vanishes.” – Peter Drucker

I took part in a training last week on how to effectively evaluate the impact of learning. Throughout the session, the recently-released report from the Association for Talent Development (ATD), Evaluating Learning: Getting the Measurements That Matter, was referenced and many of those mentions were fairly shocking.

According to this white paper study, while organizations invest approximately 8% of annual profits in training initiatives, a mere 35% of those surveyed “reported that their organizations evaluated the business results of learning programs to any extent.”

Additionally, the 2016 report noted that the majority of funding available for training impact evaluation is earmarked for assessments targeting only Levels 1 and 2 of Kirkpatrick’s 4 levels of effectiveness. But before I go off about why this is so puzzling, perhaps it’s worth a quick refresher on exactly what this Kirkpatrick Model actually is.

Developed by Dr. Don Kirkpatrick, his namesake model sets the standard for accurately gauging the impact of training. His framework organizes learning impact into four buckets, which represent the essential ripple effect that well-designed training should initiate.

1. Reaction – This take the pulse of the individual learner. Did they enjoy the training? Did they find it engaging? Did they believe its content was relevant and useful to them, individually?

2. Learning – This level goes beyond the individual learner’s “feelings” about the course or training and evaluates how much of the intended new knowledge (theories, skills, competencies, etc.) imparted within the training was actually absorbed by its participants.

3. Behavior – This third level looks at the correlation between what participants learn in a training and their subsequent work performance or behavior. Level 3 evaluations provide the first glimpses into how effective training efforts are at achieving the intended collective end-goals (i.e. effective learning transfer ).

4. Results – At this point, evaluation goes beyond individual behavior and skill set to consider the degree to which the training’s effect on individual participants impacts the targeted results at an organizational level.

In many places, you will now also see a Level 5 added to Kirkpatrick’s model, which takes the evaluation one step beyond organizational goals and looks at ROI. The ROI of a training program is calculated as:


Net benefits (benefits minus costs) / program costs * 100 = ROI%

(Phillips, Phillips, and Ray 2015)

CHALLENGES OF EFFECTIVE TRAINING EVALUATION

So just how do organizations justify continually-increasing training expenditures without the ability to prove the actual effectiveness of those investments? While in some cases, it can be justifiably blamed on an institutional “checklist mentality,” it is much more often related to the particular challenges of developing a truly effective training evaluation strategy.

While roughly 85% of organizations report regular evaluation efforts at Levels 1 (Reaction) and 2 (Learning), the percentages drop dramatically from there. Some potential drivers behind this sharp dip in evaluation efforts include:

  1. Organizational structure silos that prevent access to key management or supervisory players critical to evaluating Level 3 effectiveness and higher.
  2. Limited funding to develop rigorous evaluation methods beyond already-available assessment tools.
  3. The nature of the methods best suited for evaluating higher-level learning and business effectiveness.

    • Many strategies well-suited for gauging Level 3 effectiveness and above require 1-on-1 interviews, focus groups, and performance observation. All of which require time, personnel, budget, and most importantly effective planning and coordination.

Yet without a methodology for understanding training’s ripple effect throughout an organization, it is impossible to validate its effectiveness (or lack thereof) and use that data to optimize training content for improved results. And who wants to keep running (or participating in) an ineffective training program? Remind anyone of the old adage about insanity being defined as doing the same thing over and over again, all the while looking for a different outcome?

WHAT’S AT STAKE

Humor aside, I in no way underestimate the difficulty of structuring solid training evaluation strategies that span all levels of effectiveness. First, you must have a clear understanding (and agreement) about the real end-goal(s) of your learning expenditure. From there, it then takes a great deal of deliberate and thoughtful planning up-front, cooperation and cross-departmental coordination throughout, and dedication to creating a reliable feedback loop to support continual content and process improvement.

But the effort pays off. The payoff is seen in customer and employee satisfaction rates, in performance improvement and increased efficiencies, in the impact on a company’s bottom line. And also in the fact that an entire organization doesn’t feel as if it is treading water in the training and development department. No goodwill ever comes from wasting peoples’ time.

References:

Association for Talent Development (ATD). 2016. Evaluating Learning: Getting to Measurements That Matter. Alexandria, VA: ATD Press.

Phillips, P.P., J.J. Phillips, and R. Ray. 2015. Measuring the Success of Leadership Development. Alexandria, VA: ATD Press.

They’re Your Rules, Break Them!

Congrats on your promotion. Here’s your cap and your badge. I’ve just made you the head of a military fighting force. Bad news: you happen to be at war. Worse, you’re up against a superior force.

Now, here’s what the stats show will probably happen: If your military takes on a superior force in the conventional way, you have no more than a 28.5 per cent chance of winning.

However, if you refuse to play by the accepted rules of the game, your chances of winning, as verified by a study of wars spanning 200 years of human history, go up to a whopping 63.3 per cent. That’s a switch from ‘probably will lose’ to ‘probably will win’.

Do I have your attention?

Sometimes, breaking the rules is incredibly effective. In the business world, the same dynamic applies. You can topple industry giants if you act unconventionally. Sometimes, breaking the right rules can hand you an industry on a platter.

Rules and norms accumulate over time

As we explore the art of strategic rule-breaking, this idea is important: no system naturally tends towards simplicity. Left to evolve, everything becomes more complex, as each contributor builds new layers of rules and norms on top of old ones. Increasing complexity is actually the path of least resistance. Simplicity, far from being a natural state, requires intelligent design.

It’s a big part of the reason that so little disruptive innovation comes from within an industry. Taxi drivers didn’t invent Uber, and bankers didn’t invent PayPal, because the people within these industries think through the lenses of their own complex norms. It takes a rule-breaking maverick to see a thing afresh and venture that there might be a better way.

Fight complexity

Take Steve Jobs’s obsession with simple, clean, elegant design. In no small part, it’s what saved Apple upon his return to the company. But it meant saying no to a great many things. No to an extensive product range – keep it simple. No to extra buttons – keep it simple. No to excessive complexity – the system must be easy and intuitive to operate.

Clearing away clutter, resisting the creep of added complexity and disbanding out-dated rules requires a simplicity champion. It requires leadership willing to challenge existing systems.

How much do bad rules really cost you?

At the most glib level, mindless adherence to rules is merely annoying, sometimes even the stuff of comedy (Google the Little Britain skit ‘Computer says no’). But is that sufficient justification to embark on a campaign to overhaul your systems?

It turns out we can do a lot better than that. There are plenty of compelling reasons for reducing and relaxing the rules in your organisation. Here are 6 of them.

As part of your own efforts to change the rules-based culture at your company, this list may be useful as you begin to persuade others to your point of view. Why not present it at your next staff meeting? Ask attendees if they’ve seen real-world examples of each idea. Let their passionate discussion begin to drive the change:

The cost of rules

1. Speed

Rules entail processes that have to be followed. Each process may take a small amount of time in isolation. But pile rule upon rule and even a simple procedure can become an unreasonably slow process. The slower things happen, the greater the total lethargy.

Sometimes useful things are not allowed to happen at all, because a rule flat out prevents them from being done. Other times, a useful idea can’t get to market quickly enough. It took Google two years to get all the vetting they needed from Legal and Marketing to release Google+. By then, Facebook had such a critical mass that Google’s excellent compliance didn’t matter.

2. Willingness

When simple acts are slow to do because of the burden of procedures, the willingness to do them drops. People perceive that going above and beyond is too much trouble. They are trained and conditioned to actively reduce their contribution.

With decreased speed and increased procedures, the word ‘no’ is heard so often it becomes a form of cultural conditioning. ‘No’ trains away initiative and propensity for risk-taking. ‘No’ starts to become normative. It becomes your organisation’s default setting.

3. Mistrust

The greater the weight of the rules, the more you need people watching people, in order to enforce those rules. In an ideal organisation, where people are trustworthy and operate in a high-trust environment, you require only one person to police each person: themselves. Hierarchy becomes zero-sum and need not accumulate.

4. Loss of talent

Feelings of empowerment and a sense of purpose are among the chief needs of employees. Feelings of disempowerment are strong incentives to leave. Maintain a sense of powerlessness and frustration long enough, and you might haemorrhage top talent.

In a rules-based culture, the highly obedient, low-initiative workers stay; the frustrated innovators and high-initiative workers leave. Taken to its logical conclusion, everyone who remains blindly obeys the rules and kowtows to authority, because no one has the ‘radical value’ not to. You create the conditions for extreme groupthink.

5. Security trumping risk-taking

In cases when rules directly contradict goals, your people will tend to choose safety and job security over risk and bold action. The possibility of messy innovation attempts is shut down, precluding the possibility of smartcuts that can equal exponential growth. Multiply this behaviour and eventually no risks are taken, severely diminishing potential.

6. Silos galore

In a high-rules culture, people tend not to focus on the big picture. They lose sight of the mission. They are terrified of contradicting the internal norms and rules of their team or division, and will tend to prioritise behaviour that creates safety for themselves within that smaller division (silo), over behaviour that helps the company as a whole. They may not even know how their contribution helps the organisation, which can create immense conflict between divisions. Unfortunately, your competition will not honour your internal divisions. They may see opportunity in such weakness.

The result of these accumulated costs will be that growth will only happen incrementally in your organisation, if at all.

They also introduce all the inherent dangers of a behemoth that is unable to adapt to change.

Think of it like an old locomotive steam train, running with irresistible momentum on set railway lines. You may run your behemoth to optimised perfection, but if you’re the Kodak of your industry, making film, and you can’t adapt your optimised perfection to the new reality of digital, your optimised behemoth will run, perfectly and unswervingly, with great and irresistible momentum, right off the edge of a cliff. Disruption kills off the dinosaurs that can’t adapt.

Which rules does your organisation cling to, for no reason other than that the rules have always existed? What if you appointed yourself to champion the drive toward greater simplicity and agility? After all, they’re your rules. You can break them. And the ones who do so strategically acquire the leverage to topple the industry giants. They gift themselves with the space necessary to create truly disruptive innovation.

8 Ways to Expand Your Home Business Without Leaving the House

1. Double down on your online presence.

More than half of consumers — 59 percent to be exact — use Google in the hopes of finding a reliable, local business. Even if you’re running a one-person business, using a 5-year-old website and your personal network isn’t good enough anymore. Update your website so your landing page is up-to-date, and make sure that your website functions well on mobile devices too. If you don’t have the skills necessary to revamp your own website and lack the funds to hire someone to do it for you, you could start with do-it-yourself tools like Wix or Squarespace. While these tools won’t provide as original a result as a totally custom site would, drag-and-drop design tools will let you create an attractive website that relates the information your customers need to know.

2. Measure your online success.

If you truly want to grow your business, you need to find out what works and what doesn’t when it comes to your website. Luckily, there are many analytics tools out there that can tell you how consumers interact with your website. A good place to start is with Google Analytics, a free, easy-to-use tool that offers robust functions. Google Analytics lets you track traffic, see how users behave and pinpoint any problems in your conversion funnel.

3. Take advantage of the freelance economy.

As you’re expanding your home business, there are many tasks that need to be done but might not justify a whole new hire. Thankfully, in today’s world, the freelance economy is growing, and hiring someone on a project basis is easier than ever. Even if you want to do something complicated like create an app or convert your old business website into one that is mobile-responsive, platforms like Toptal can connect you with freelancers for that task. Once the job is done, you don’t have to keep them on the payroll, ensuring that your business isn’t paying for idle hands.

4. Automate your marketing campaign.

Email is a powerful tool for converting new customers and keeping previous customers loyal to your business, but sending emails to your entire client or consumer list is a time-consuming process. MailChimp is a service that automates your entire email campaign system, offering easy-to-use drag and drop design tools and helpful analytics to boot. Using an automation tool for your email marketing needs will save you time and make your campaigns more efficient.

5. Ramp up your customer service.

In today’s world, consumers expect great products with great service. In fact, 66 percent of customers will take their business to a competitor if they experience poor customer service at a company. To build brand loyalty and a great reputation, start using cloud-based based customer support tools like Freshdesk, which provides a single place to track all customer queries as well as automation for many steps of customer interaction. This will help you quickly respond to all customer questions while again saving you time.

6. Grow your presence on social media.

The average internet user spends 1.72 hours every day on social media, making social media platforms valuable places for your business to attract new customers. Services like Hootsuite allow you to manage all of your social media accounts on a single dashboard, automate posts, and track the success of all of your engagements. Not only does Hootsuite reduce the amount of time you need to spend on handling social media, it will also help you develop stronger insight on your audience’s behaviors.

7. Track your time.

When you’re running a business by yourself or with just one or two coworkers, time management is paramount to success. With so many different roles to fill within your business, juggling multiple responsibilities is difficult. Time trackers like Toggl help you structure your day and make sure you don’t spend too much time on one task. If you want to track time for an entire time, Harvest is a great option to coordinate everyone at your business and delegate time and responsibilities properly.

8. Streamline your payroll.

If your business has reached the point where you are expanding your team, congratulations. It’s a big step forward, but handling payroll can be a time consuming pain when you’re too small to have an HR employee to handle it for your business. Tools like Zenefits and Gusto provide software to take care of payroll, employee benefits, and taxes. With these services, you’ll find software that provides a neat and organized solution to onboarding and documentation, and you won’t need to hire anyone in HR until your business gets significantly larger.

What Are Fixed Assets?

In case the asset isn’t predicted to last longer than 1 year, it’s not a fixed asset. These resources are anticipated to be used for over 1 accounting period. A future economic resources, in regard to financial accountancy usually means any object, factor or feature of the person, business organization or company, with a financial liquidity. There are a number of procedures to compute depreciation. It can be calculated using the Straight-Line method, or the Accelerated Depreciation method. Several people are knowledgeable about the term ‘depreciation’. In the company Earth, however, depreciation is really related to another notion. The most frequent depreciation technique is called straight-line depreciation, that’s the initial price of an asset divided by its useful life.

The Importance of Fixed Assets

Fixed assets are from time to time collectively known as plant. They are not easily sold. They lose value as they age. The entire asset varies with regard to their liquidity. These economic-resources may endure for many years and this is the area where depreciation enters the picture. These have to be sold, and a hurried sale could lead to a loss. A fixed asset isn’t anticipated to be consumed or converted into cash in front of a time frame of a single year.

Assets are among the principal things that should be analyzed to specify the value of a business. Before doing this, the asset has to be supplied a salvage value. These resources play an extremely instrumental part in the manufacturing procedure for the organization. A long-term asset is not too straightforward. A noncurrent-asset consists of fixed assets. There are lots of sorts of economic resources a business owns.

Here are the most common classifications used:

Furniture and fixtures

Buildings

Computer equipment

Car and Vehicles

Construction in progress

Goodwill and Copy Rights etc.

Land

Land improvements…

Leasehold improvements.

In addition, there is some asset, which do not has any industry value but instead have a recurring expenditure. Some assets aren’t depreciable since they don’t deteriorate over time. Latest assets have a brief life span. Because of this, it should be regarded as present resources and included in the corporation’s working capital accounts, much less a fixed asset. To begin with, it is simply morally wrong and second, you don’t just have your existing assets in danger. To acquire this, an individual needs to divide the recent assets by the recent liabilities. It is chiefly believed to be a short-term asset for virtually any organization.

Leaders Allowing Employees to Break Rules for Creativity

Typically, leaders know the rules to inspire, motivate and just explain get employees to be productive in the work they do. Yet, in today’s business climate, the use of creativity and rules come into play in different ways from the traditional or conventional way of getting things done.

The challenge is in finding the balance between leading employees and having employees be creative and innovative. Since creative types are a different breed, they are less worried about profit, less tied into the world of MBAs and bottom lines. If you lead your team too tightly, you run the risk of creating narrow-minds and inflexibility. If you lead your team too loosely, the team can fall into the trap of perpetual creativity, but accomplish nothing. Your objective as the team leader is not to swing too hard in either direction.

In most respects, creativity has rules to help you change the habits you have of conventional or traditional ways of getting things done. It is important to know the rules before you consider breaking them.

If you think for a minute or two about all of the rules that you conform to as a) individuals and b) groups then you will be surprised at how long the list is. Your list might start something like:

I begin work at 9am and leave at 5pm

I only work Monday to Friday

I must get my timesheet in by 5pm on Friday

Only senior managers can use the covered parking spaces

We must answer the telephone within 5 rings

… And the list goes on. Create your own list and see how many could be broken without affecting anybody else. By keeping a list of these rules in mind, you can balance between what you can and cannot do.

We all conform to rules and create boundaries which become constrained by for one reason or another. Try breaking some rules and see what happens, don’t think of it as breaking rules, instead think of it as stretching your boundaries.

Breaking the Rules for Creative Innovation

There are those times when you need to realize that creativity does actually have rules. They are not the same as traditional or conventional company rules. When you know enough to realize that rules decrease your productivity, it’s often a good time to break them. Rule breaking, of course, means risk.

“Rules can be broken as long as you work for a company that is comfortable with disruption as a defining them for growth,” says Roy Cohen, career coach and author of The Wall Street Professional Survival Guide.

Hiring Differently

Hiring creative and innovative people are not the same as hiring an employee for a profit making company. You need to look definitely “outside the box” in tapping creative people for generating ideas for greater breakthrough results. Their experiences and unique abilities and capabilities with how well they collaborate with team members are very important.

Creativity boils down to breaking the rules

No one likes to be thought of as a conformist who is afraid to take a chance and break the rules. “When you know enough to realize that the rules don’t make sense or seem to bog down productivity, it’s often a good time to break them,” says Mark McMillion, founder of Clarksburg, West Virginia based McMillion Leadership Associates.

“You stand out by breaking the rules with your business- doing things no one else will do.” -Julie Austin

Calculate the risk of staying where you are and conducting business as you have been versus getting out of your survival mode or getting a jump over your competition to thrive beyond your expectation with being creative and innovative.

Rules are made to be broken when creating and innovating. Traditional rules hold back creativity and innovation breakthrough results.

A good team leader lets the team know the general direction where it’s heading, and trusts everyone enough to carry on. That is not to say that the team leader is completely hands-off, but it means that they have confidence in the group to move forward without her micro-managing every detail. If the work is going too far off the rails, the team leader needs to step in and keep everyone on track and moving forward.

“If the rules of creativity are the norm for a company, creative will be the norm.”

– Jim Gilmore

Systematically-Planned Mergers & Acquisitions Consulting Can Result in Organization Growth

Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) are strategically important in enhancing competitiveness and growth of an organization. Typically acquisitions, mergers and divestitures happen on an aggressive timeline in order to ensure the success the changes. It is important to understand that the primary purpose of any mergers and acquisitions is not to grow big fast but for small companies to do what they do better.

How consulting help business to achieve the successful M&A?

Consulting firms and consultants helps small business firms improve their chances of successful mergers and acquisitions through a result-oriented and integrated approach that links merger integration, acquisition strategy and diligence. The mergers & acquisitions consulting firms usually build a strong M&A capability that forms the foundation for the success in five important steps.

1. Acquisition strategy:

Consulting firm helps small business their M&A programs as a vector of growth strategy. They will work with companies to decide where to invest and where to divest in line with corporate strategy. This helps companies to prioritize their growth opportunity and develop tailored M&A programs based on the previous experience.

2. Divestitures and separations:

Mergers and acquisitions consulting professionals alongside companies in order manage their portfolios and decide where to growth where to grow and where to shed. Management can better focus its attention on its core business and unlock substantial shareholder value, by thoughtfully divesting non-core assets or separating organizations.

3. Joint ventures and alliances

Consultants assist clients throughout the joint venture process, which is strategy development, operating implementation and partner selection. Due to their in-depth knowledge and vast experience in this domain, many consultants across the world have found that alliances between two or more business ventures go wrong most frequently due to the neglect of the strategy development.

Years of understanding of this domain have helped the consulting firm to focus disproportionately on ensuring that the M&A deals are structured correctly from the outsets. Also, consultants structure deal with a very clear, shared vision and a solid understanding of mutual economics.

4. Merger integration

Companies have to nail a short of critical actions, in order to make an M&A pay off. It is important to understand that merging any two business ventures requires rigorous follow-through on a long list of integration tasks. Being a quality focused name, the quality of merger integration is always maintained in accordance with industry laid norms and regulations.

As a small business venture, you should understand that merger integration is hard to do with help from professionals who hold expertise in their area of work. Many consulting firms follow the unique approach that is tailored to the specifics of M&A deal to capture value from day one.

5. Strategic due diligence

Many experienced consultants collaborate seamlessly with the team of their clients in order to help them make better-informed investment decisions. Keeping the track of latest happening of this domain, they generate insights through diligence to prove or disprove the deal thesis.

6. Acquisition screening

In a zest to attain maximum satisfaction, consulting firm help clients develop an investment thesis that is precisely aligned with their growth opportunities. They work to enhance deal flow by screening specific and diverse targets based on criteria set in the M&A strategy. In addition to this, they develop a roadmap for approaching targets.

Open Door Questions

In our past few blogs, we’ve been talking about the great sales technique called Reversing. Reversing is an approach we use, where we answer questions with questions, designed to disarm the prospect and create trust. If trust is established, you have a much greater chance of uncovering the prospect’s pain and gaining a sale. This blog is the last in our series on Reversing, and shows you how to open doors you assumed were already closed.

Salespeople sometimes make the mistake of assuming they understand the motive behind a prospect’s question, and jump right into answering the question, only to find they’ve been set up. Savvy prospects may use tricks like the trap and test question, designed to box a salesperson in to a corner. Here’s an example:

Prospect: “Do your sensors have fast response times?”

Most salespeople who sell sensors with fast response times will respond proudly and quickly without thinking.

Salesperson: “Yes, our sensors respond in milliseconds”.

Prospect: “Well, we don’t need response and don’t want to pay more for something we don’t need”.

Smiling slyly, the prospect knows they have just boxed the salesperson in to a corner.

A smartly trained Sandler expert, would have asked a reversing question instead, something like:

Salesperson: “Well, actually, that’s a great question. I don’t get that question too often. Our sensors… please, tell me, do you need fast response times?”

This reverse response is called the “start-stop reverse”. Did you notice the start-stop? Let’s breakdown the reverse so you can see.

“Well actually, that’s a great question (stroke). I don’t get question too often. (another stroke) Our sensors (stops – the salesperson looked like they were going to answer but stop and ask another question) Please tell me (softening statement) do you need fast response times?” (reverse question)

This technique comes across as spontaneous to the prospect and throws them off, but in reality, it is “prepared spontaneity”. It’s another very effective way of getting prospects to loosen up and reveal some pain. This technique also helps you stay out of the traps that prospects may try to lure you into, throwing you into a box, and keeps you in the game. You still have a chance to make a deal.

An expert salesperson should analyze the prospect’s question to understand their true intent, before offering a response. When you begin to master the reversing techniques, you will do this without much thought, and reverse your prospect into trusting you and sharing pain. If there’s enough pain, and you have the solution, your sales numbers will increase dramatically.

These reversing techniques are awesome, but be smart, and don’t over do it. If some asks what time it is, you don’t have to say, “great question… why did you ask me that at this time?” It is okay to just look at your watch and give them the correct time!

By the same token, if prospects ask the same question twice in a row, you must answer it. Don’t try to reverse it again. If you do, you’re going to break your bonding and rapport and maybe even make them angry. But (and it’s a big but), if prospects do ask the same question twice, you can and should reverse after you answer the question:

Salesperson: “Our response times vary. We have sensors that respond in milliseconds and others that have response times up to 15 to 20 seconds. Can you tell me why you asked?”

Reversing is a powerful selling technique that will help you uncover your prospect’s pain. Make sure to use it only when the prospect feels safe and you’ve established bonding and rapport. Add Reversing to your sales tool box and you’ll have an effective technique that’ll help your prospects relive their pain. And as you know, Pain leads directly to the Money.

Why Your Business Needs Commercial Security Cameras

There are many components that can be involved in a proper security system. The perimeter around the premises should be under video surveillance, as should areas such as cellars, back and side entrances, cash register areas, vaults, and more. Some installation companies also offer motion detectors and intercom systems to facilitate inter-company communication for checking in and in case of emergency. The best companies will offer certified teams (where all employees have undergone stringent background checks) that can install everything and provide maintenance. Do some research to find the most secure and cost-effective set-up for your business, and consider the following ways a surveillance system will help protect your staff, clients, and property.

A Good Defense Is the Best Offense

The fact that they can see commercial security cameras on the spot will immediately deter potential robbers from zoning in on your establishment as a target. Criminals scoping out businesses to rob will always prefer those that do not have obvious surveillance equipment because there is much less of a chance that they will be caught and subsequently prosecuted. Film footage often provides unquestionable testimony as to who has committed the crime.

Defense After the Fact

In the unfortunate circumstance that a business is burglarized or otherwise falls victim to criminal activity, commercial security cameras will help law enforcement apprehend those responsible. When that happens, the business can receive compensation for damages and losses. Anyone injured or killed (and/or their families) is more likely to receive the justice and peace of mind they deserve. Even if the faces in the video are not clear, footage provides invaluable information, such as when the incident happened, the weaponry involved, the physical profiles of the robbers, and more. This evidence also helps prevent innocent people from being wrongly prosecuted.

Professional Appearance

In today’s world, camera equipment is becoming more and more expected for legitimate companies. Clients associate this equipment with professionalism, not just safety, and they have increased confidence in all aspects of the business and its services and products when cameras are visible. They will know they’re in competent hands and that their well-being is prioritized.

Employee Safety

It’s hard enough to make a living; people shouldn’t have to worry about their personal safety while at work. Commercial security cameras keep minds at ease and help employers foster a comfortable working environment.

Employee Integrity

Although everyone hopes that the people they hire are committed to keeping the business’s best interests at heart, sometimes bad eggs slip through the cracks (especially in large companies). Knowing that there are commercial security cameras on the premises makes any employee considering an inside crime think twice. Depending on the particulars of the establishment in question, having such a system can also cut down on slacking off.

A Good Investment

Although the price of good equipment can seem daunting, many sellers are cost-effective, and a little research will yield reasonable results. Besides, it’s an investment that pays off; one burglary can devastate a business. What’s more, many insurance companies offer deals to places with security systems.

All That You Desired to Know Regarding Fulfillment for ECommerce

The fulfillment for eCommerce is the central part of your eCommerce sales chain that helps you deliver your products to customers. Basically, e-Commerce fulfillment is a comprehensive process involving activities ranging from receiving orders to documenting, picking, packing, and finally shipping of items through third-party logistics of global recognition. Simply put, in the beginning, while most online retail houses were used to maintain inventory while packing boxes in their workshop like a garage, etc., as they grow with millions of customers across the globe, they consider outsourcing their order fulfillment third-party logistics company or 3PL.

The consistency and similarity of predictable and accurate order fulfillment is the success key to keep customers happy, earn positive reviews, and multiply the market. A well-planned and professionally managed eCommerce fulfillment not only saves your money, time but equally helps your online retail business project operate seamlessly with increased market reach. To make this monumental project success, working with a specialized eCommerce fulfillment service provider should be your first priority that helps make your business lively and agile. Here’ we are going to discuss the four basic elements of the e-commerce fulfillment process:

Receiving

Having inventory in hand is essential to fulfill orders coming through your retail business partner. On receipt of the pallets, items are documented, logged in inventory, stored on the shelves, and other kinds of storage units. Since you are equipped with a professional fulfillment for eCommerce partner, maintaining inventory is essential to take care of fulfilling orders from your trusted associate.

Inventory storage

Inventory storage, which is widely known as warehousing involves effective organization as well as storage of the shipments, which should be done proficiently by your outsourced partner. To undertake your larger online operation successfully, the fulfillment point should have a large-scale storage arrangement combining with bins, shelves, high-tech mobile shelving systems, and also pallets. Appropriate inventory storage is essential to keep merchandise secure, protected, which offers higher visibility to understand what is available in stock or for the execution of order while which are about to finish. This helps in maintaining high-class integration among the retail stores and its 3L partner.

Order processing

As orders continue to come, they need to get processed keeping the same speed. This processing job involves 3 vital steps including picking, packing, and getting them ready for shipping to customers. Each material packed and ready for ship should be included with a slip explaining the warehouse location, quantities apart from instructions like the kind of packaging material used including boxes, ploy bags, packing tape, bubble mailers, bubble wrap – or using customized packaging that reaches end customers in undamaged condition. Finally, shipping labels should be affixed to the package.

Shipping

Immediately on the processing of the order and labeling is done, it needs to be shipped. This process of shipping usually includes global courier companies like UPS Store, DHL service, or its equivalent and once it’s shipped, the retail shop is sent the tracking info which can equally be shared with customers enabling them to track their deliveries.

Return processing

Whereas a customer returns an order, they are shipped directly to the fulfillment for an eCommerce service provider or the retailing point where it needs to be evaluated. Based on the cause of return, item quality, and the return policy of the retainer company, the item may be restocked as obtainable inventory or discarded due to faulty.

ePakShip is a fulfillment center located in Lexington, KY offering order fulfillment services such as pick, pack, ship, inventory management, warehousing, shopping cart integration, and so on. To know more, visit https://epakship.com/about/.

What Do Roulette and Your Customer Surveys Have in Common?

We all know the gambling game, Roulette. You place a bet and a wheel containing 37 slots is spun and a ball added. The wheel spins and spins until it comes to a stop and the ball falls randomly into one of the slots. But how many times do you have to spin the wheel to obtain an equal probability that the numbers 0 – 36 appear? The answer is around 1500 spins (calculated using fancy statistics)! Although this problem is based around Roulette, we can apply the same principles to business.

For example, how many surveys will your company have to send out to get a good representation from each of your customer target demographics? Or to put it in a more scientific way, how many surveys will you have to send out to get an equal representation of returned surveys from all demographics.

We can break this problem down into its component parts. Let’s say your company appeals to two age demographics: 18-30 and 30-40 years old. In addition to this, both men and women use your products and you have customers in 20 London postcodes. That means you have:

2 x Age demographics

2 x Gender demographics

20 x Postcodes demographics

Totalling 80 unique demographics!

So if you assume that each demographic is equally as likely to return these surveys, then you would have to send out over 5000 surveys to get a good return! By good return, I, of course, mean an equal return rate across all demographics.

But why is it so important to obtain an equal representation from each demographic? If you were to ask one person what their favourite film is, would that be a fair reflection on what everybody’s favourite film is? Of course not. If you were to ask, say 1000 people what their favourite film is, this may give you a better idea of what the most popular films are. With the example above, one male 25-year-old customer from NW4 may not reflect the views of every male under 40 living in NW4.

Using scientific principles to design business strategies will allow you to make predictions on the outcome of these strategies. Such thinking will help you make better business decisions, as in the case above, where you will know prior to sending out surveys, how many you will need to send out to get a good representation from each demographic.

1 5 6 7 8 9 10