3 Areas You Need To Take Care Of In Business

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Anything you purchase or create in this world needs nurturing and taking care of to stay in peak condition. Running a business is no different in this respect. It requires a holistic approach, an investment of time, effort, and money to sustain your companies success and in turn, hopefully, see it flourish. For a perspective on which areas need most of your care, there are three things you need to think about.

Health, Safety, And Wellbeing

An area that all businesses need to bear in mind is health and safety. And with the increase in awareness of mental health problems, wellbeing is becoming an increasingly important topic for business owners the world over to incorporate into their HR practices. Whether you’re running a cargo shipping business, you own a store selling camping equipment, or you run a zoo, health, and safety regulations possess a place in every industry. To assess your business needs in this area, keep it simple and think about the following to see where and if you need to improve your business in this department;

  • Cleanliness – A filthy workspace is a breeding ground for germs. This will, in turn, will impact on your employee’s health, meaning more sick days. Not only this, but bacteria could infect or contaminate the products that you sell also.
  • Clutter – An unorganized, messy workspace is a poor environment filled with hazards that could mean a nasty fall or accident for one of your workers or customers. Resulting in impacting your reputation and the need to pay out for a personal injury claim
  • Developing hazards – Such as a fire door that keeps getting stuck when you attempt to open it, or a fire alarm that keeps going off in the middle of the day with no specific reason behind it. All of your health and safety equipment should work and be free from obstructions or errors. 

The health and safety areas listed above form the foundation for taking care of your employees. Alongside this, it’s essential to look after your employee’s wellbeing. A happy team is a productive team.

  • Team building – Create a pleasant, sociable environment to work in by instigating team building activities for employees.
  • Training – Provide ongoing training for staff to improve their existing knowledge and boost confidence in their role.
  • Promotions – Great employees should be allowed to excel when there is an opportunity to do so.
  • Praise and celebrate – Accomplishments big and small should be recognized. Such as, via a certificate, or a letter outlining why your employee is an asset to the team.
  • One to one meetings – This allows your employees to voice any concerns they may have and highlight anything they think the business can do to make life better for your staff
  • Perks – Whether free fruit every day in the office, to wine and beers stocked in the fridge on a Friday afternoon. There are tons of ways to boost employee morale at work by implementing a few perks on the job.

Taking care of your employees and customers is essential for running a great business. By committing to some of the suggestions above, your workforce will feel valued, comfortable, and confident in their jobs. Taking care of your employees properly will lead to a better, stronger workforce with a reduced turnover of staff. 

Back-Up And Protect

The concept behind your business and the intel you have accrued along the way (such as the clients, business contacts, financial reports, and bank accounts, future plans to grow, etc.) is the lifeblood of your business. A lot of energy from entrepreneurs is spent growing their business, but the same can’t be said for protecting it. Which is why you need to be smart about backing up and protecting the business data you’ve worked so hard to accrue.

There are many sources available for you to store your business information. It purely depends on the size of your business and how much information you need to allocate. This will be the deciding factor on what storage is right for you. For instance, if your work is currently in paper form, it is 100% advisable to scan this into digital form to keep copies in case the originals are destroyed. Furthermore, once you have your copies of your work in digital form, don’t rely on one device alone to hold your business data, branch out, and seek other opportunities. You can store your data on an external hard drive, by using cloud services, or by buying or hiring servers.

Once you have stored your business intel in a few areas, you need to protect your sources any way you can. Whether employing an experienced IT technician to protect your systems from errors and hackers, or by outsourcing Server Monitoring to survey your existing servers and eradicate any faults and mistakes that may crop up. 

Take Care Of You! 

Your employee’s health, safety, and wellbeing, along with protecting your business information, are your top priorities. However, there is one more that’s incredibly important, you! What would your business be without you? It needs the very best of your creativity, ideas, personal inspiration and problem-solving to sustain the growth it’s made this far. If you’re in a bad place physically or mentally, this will have a devastating impact on the health of your business. Initially, it may be challenging to prize your thoughts and self away from your growing company, but it’s entirely necessary to stay sane and energized, by regularly sleeping, eating (mostly healthy food), exercising and laughing!

On the subject of laughter, as you’re probably aware, running a business isn’t all roses and rainbows. You have to solve difficult problems from competitors cropping up across the street from you, issues with reaching your target audience, and difficulties with staff that are finding it difficult to take orders. Which is why at some point, you will need to find the funny side in the events that occur. Otherwise, you risk spiraling into a pit of depression, where everything about your business appears to be doom and gloom. And so, through those tears laugh when the vending machine breaks for the umpteenth time and join in when employees are cracking jokes about you.

Prioritizing the needs of your employees, business information, and will enable you to effectively run a healthy, prosperous, and sustainable business.

Getting to Grips With Data and Data Storage

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As a small business owner, you’re going to deal with a whole lot of data. It’s an inevitable part of running a company! But you really do need to remember the importance of storing data correctly. Hopefully, the following information will help you to get to grips with everything you need to know on the subject!

Understanding Data

So, what actually is data? Well, it’s essentially “information”. Data can be a word, a number, a fact, a figure, a measurement, or an observation that can be noted down. When you run a small business, the type of data that you will generally deal with includes customer names and addresses for shipping purposes, payment details, email addresses for mailing lists, and occasionally phone numbers. If you are an employee and have members of staff working for you, you are also likely to hold a lot of their data too! From a copy of their passport (to prove their right to work) to bank details for payment, and their phone number or email address to contact them.

Storing Data

In the past, small businesses stored their data in paper files. But nowadays, small business owners tend to store their data on a tech device such as computer, a laptop, a tablet, or maybe even a smartphone. Now, it is extremely important that you store any data that your business takes securely and in accordance with data protection law. Data protection law is mainly concerned with protecting your customers’ data and personal information. If you were to leak this data or the wrong person were to get their hands on this data, your customers could find themselves victims of theft and identity theft. Perhaps the most effective and safest way to store your data properly is to hire someone to take care of it on your behalf. Just take a look into Data Storage recruitment to find the right person for the job. They will know the ins and outs of data storage and data protection law and can lift the weight of responsibility from your shoulders.

Disposing of Data

If you have any printed data, make sure that you dispose of it by placing it through a shredder. This will prevent people from picking anything out of the trash, as they would have to reassemble multiple pieces to find anything legible.

Keeping Up to Date

Data protection law is constantly being updated and improved upon. So, make sure to keep up with any changes that are made to ensure that you are following the right rules! Generally speaking, these new rules are made very clear and well publicized, so this shouldn’t be an issue!

While there are other ins and outs to data and data storage, these basics should help you to manage yours as effectively as possible! Incorporate all of this information into your business as soon as possible!

Protecting Your Business in Today’s World

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Business owners go to a lot of effort and expense in terms of their business, yet, it’s so easy for things to become undone in a matter of days should you not protect yourself from significant risks.

Today’s landscape, in the modern world of business, has changed dramatically in terms of security, with much focus on digital security and data protection rather than the physical security of locks and bolts, or security guards, that was once associated with commercial security.

Whilst such measures are still required, after all, you don’t want to leave the doors open to your office or a shop floor unattended – there is a need to think about security slightly more holistically, incorporating the digital aspects, and in this vein this article offers a number of aspects to consider as a business owner in today’s security conscious world.

  1. PROTECT YOUR DATA

In addition to cybercrime, the most common issue when it comes to data loss is through physical theft (e.g. your laptop gets stolen at an airport) or, more likely, corrupt data as a result of accidental damage.

For this reason, you want to make sure you back everything up to the cloud, rather than relying on your laptop’s hard drive (even if you like to believe it’s indestructible), external hard drives which often malfunction over time, or USB’s which are flimsy and easy to snap – meaning the data on them would have to be forensically recovered which is an expensive process.

  1. EMPLOYMENT

If you’re employing staff then employment lawyers are absolutely essential to protecting yourself, and your staff – as this area of law is particularly intricate with new case law informing modern practices on an almost weekly basis.  This area of law evolves so rapidly that even if you think you can get away with using something you used previously, it’s wise to get it checked out first by the professionals.

  1. INCIDENT PREVENTION

Business owner’s are vicariously liable for the negligent actions of its employees – meaning, if for instance, you had a restaurant and a waiter slipped whilst holding a knife, which subsequently landed in the leg of a dinner, you would be held liable for your employees negligence.  

It’s therefore imperative, from a legal perspective, to ensure the adequate training of your staff, as this will mitigate your liability as if you can show you took all reasonable steps as an employer to prevent the incident taking place – the courts are likely to look much more favorably on your position in terms of damages.

  1.  PHYSICAL SECURITY

We often forget the importance of physical security, in a business context, yet as with recent incidents such as people walking into corporate offices and attacking office workers, whether randomly due to mental health issues, or planned as a reaction to their disdain for corporate policies… employees are feeling more and more vulnerable, therefore, it’s good to have measures in place to protect your staff, and your customers.

It’s sad that so many public facing services, such as transport operators, now have to put up signs stating “we will not tolerate abuse or physical violence”, but this is the landscape we live in today, and it’s good to have a plan in place… along with practical measures, to ensure you protect yourself and your staff.