Getting the Most Out of Your Company’s Work Portal

Corporate portals can serve as useful tools for aggregating links and information for employees. It makes perfect sense to gather relevant news, content and external links in one convenient location. This way, users only have to make one stop to get whatever they need—and are empowered to answer their own questions rather than having to go through HR or leadership teams for intel.

But all too often, web portals go underutilized by employees after their orientation period. Sure, users may check out the portal during their first few days of onboarding—and perhaps occasionally thereafter for specific queries. In general, however, engagement tends to diminish over time.

The end result? When corporate portals fall by the wayside, they fall short of providing value to users and companies as a whole. Here’s a guide to getting the most out of your company’s work portal.

Define Goals for Your Web Portal

Think about what you want your corporate portal to accomplish. What does the optimal user experience (UX) look and feel like? What features and controls must employees be able to access within this hub? What are the potential benefits to both end users and the organization as a whole?

According to Techopedia, web portals often contain features like “data access, personal content, transactions, security, published content and search.” Of course, no two hubs are exactly the same—appearance and UX depend on the organization and its goals. Companies are increasingly giving employees the opportunity to customize their portal to fit their preferences. The final product will also depend on which applications you make available for integration.

Start by defining goals. First, broadly. Then drill down and get more specific. What do you want your portal to accomplish? How often do you want users to visit it? What degree of personalization must your portal offer to users? Which devices will support access? Only once you have these guiding ideas in mind can you put together a genuinely useful product.

Avoid treating it as a catch-all and instead design it with intentionality.

Embed Data Analytics for Easy Access

Work portals are increasingly becoming a site for embedded analytics like ThoughtSpot as companies aim to monetize their stored data by making insights more accessible to all. The goal here is giving employees—even those without a background in data—direct access to the business intelligence tools and interactive charts they need to make informed decisions.

Monetizing stored data has become a major priority for businesses looking to gain the competitive edge. One way to monetize data is to allow users to ask questions and get answers instantly without having to wait for static reports. Speedy and informed decisions across the board drive better business outcomes. So, embedding search-driven analytics, custom charts and entire dashboards directly into portals is a solid first step toward data monetization.

Create a Personalized, Engaging Experience

It’s worth considering whether your company is giving people a genuine reason to visit your portal. As Society for Human Resource Management points out, users inevitably tend to compare corporate portals to their favorite websites—like Amazon and social media platforms.

What lessons can we glean from these popular sites? People today value personalized experiences, advanced search options and engaging features. If your portal misses the mark in any of these areas, employees will want to use it less. Offer opportunities for customization so users can create an environment and workflow that suits their preferences. This will go a long way in incentivizing employees to continually engage with your portal.

Getting the most out of your company’s work portal depends on allowing employees to customize it to their liking, and using it to provide useful tools like data analytics.

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How to Add Skill to your career by doing Digital Marketing

Digital Marketing is a very highly demanded skill as the business and brands depending upon it for promoting their business, products and market research. Nowadays it is a very effective way to reach the market or a target audience as people are spending most of their time on a social media platform. It is easy to track and measuring advertising efforts precisely in digital marketing.

Best Digital Marketing Companies in Delhi, Noida and Gurgaon

People can get to digital marketing by learning some concept and some skill. This blog can show you how to learn digital marketing and make that a career.

Should you choose a career as a Digital Marketer?

Digital marketing is an ever-changing field that keeps people excited by having new technologies, Lead generation strategies and market to explore.

Another great thing about digital marketing is you always work with new people and getting new projects with new clients, so it is impossible to get bored when you are working in this field.

Digital marketing can apply to media like telephones, television and other connected platforms.

The major types which digital marketing focus are:

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Search Engine Marketing      (SEM)
  • Content Marketing
  • Social Media Marketing         (SMM)
  • Pay Per Click Advertising        (PPC)
  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Email Marketing

Regardless On the platform you focus on. The goal of a digital marketer is same in all of these cases to drive traffic, engaging audience and convert the visitor into audience through online tools and channels.

Digital Marketing in Delhi

  • Learn by doing

Best way to learn digital marketing is to work in under freelancer or a consultant who have experience in this field. finding such an expert is not an easy task but it can benefit you well.

  • Blogging/ E-commerce

By working in this field may help you in learning digital marketing as well as it provides you specialization in another related field. You will also get motivated push by learning and applying digital marketing in a proper way can benefit your blogging.

These are the best way to learn digital marketing. If you are still interested in digital marketing but don’t know what to do here is the best option for you.

Learn digital marketing and start working in a professional company within 6 months. Get mentored by an expert in live training.

Home improvement Hacks to Increase the value of your property

Owning a home is like a dream come true for many, so, why not? It is, after all, a stamp of ownership and belonging. Moreover, a few improvements on home designs is something owners can cash in on in the future. With just a small investment, your property’s worth will increase. This is especially true with the right renovation project. There are simple measures that can be done to raise your home’s value.

Improving Your Home and Its value


                       Copyright: Photo by Brian Babb on Unsplash

  1. Consult with your Washington Brown broker on how much your property is worth. Initial inspection will give you an estimate of your profit. Aside from a broker, a real estate agent may also help you assess your property value in comparison to the current real estate price of both brand new houses and old homes. Showing them your house plans may be helpful. They may be able to assist you on how you can make your home worth selling as well. That is where point number two comes into the picture.

 

  1. Repaint walls, ceilings, and outdoor areas. Fresh paint makes your house look newer without costing you a lot of money. In fact, it’s the first step to improving kerb appeal and encouraging potential buyers to check the interiors. Check out new trends in home designs and colour schemes for inspiration.

 

  1. Inspect your home for any damages, problems, and any other issues that will bring down the value of your home. List down any and all concerns to help you estimate the renovation costs. This amount should be included in your calculation of the final listing price of your property. Reach out to contractors if you prefer to have them make an estimate for you.

 

  1. Give the kitchen a good touch up, whether it’s the counter, cabinet, or the backsplash. This doesn’t have to be a total redo of this area in your house but a few changes that can make a difference. Refacing the cabinet can give the kitchen a new look while adding more storage like a spice rack cleverly hidden in a corner can increase its functionality.

 

  1. Take time to improve your outdoor landscape, especially when you have a big open space outside. For your backyard, you can consider putting up an outdoor living space that adds to the kerb appeal of your home. Most modern home designs these days, have outdoor areas designed for relaxation and better living.

 

  1. Well-lit houses are known to be more attractive than those that have minimal lighting. Check if you have busted bulbs or poorly-lit areas at home. Replace or fix those problem lighting fixtures immediately. Everyone needs good lighting, anyway. Refer to your house plans for the electrical wiring if you need to do more than just replace bulbs. Part of checking the lighting quality of your home is to also check if there are no problems related to its wiring. For such tasks, remember to hire professional electricians.

 

  1. If you have extra yet unused space inside the house, you may want to consider turning it into another bathroom. Check the plumbing work in your house plans and see if this particular project is possible. It can either be a full or half bath. Regardless, this can significantly add a good amount to the net worth of your property.

 

  1. Clean up your home to make it presentable to those who would want a tour around it. Nothing better shows a home’s potential than a clutter-free view of its interior and exterior. So make sure to allocate a day of general house cleaning to increase your house’s worth in the eyes of prospective buyers. Also, this can help you notice other repairs that need to get done, which you might have overlooked.

 

  1. Perform a final round maintenance check. Most of the time, it is the little problems that can have major repercussions on your plans. A squeaking floor can lower the interest of buyers. Even a door that is hard to open can turn them off. Make sure that you have the big and small improvements in your home covered.

 

  1. Rearrange furniture and other fixtures around the house to create a bigger space for viewers to move around. Commonly, viewers of listed houses are more attracted to properties that are spacious. This will also help them freely imagine their life inside the property where they fill up space with furnishings they own and like.


                          Copyright: Photo by Philipp Berndt on Unsplash

There are plenty of ways on how you can raise your home’s value. From basic tasks like cleaning to bigger improvements like adding a new bathroom, there are a lot of things that you can do. But be sure to carry out projects that add value and will not cost more than your property’s worth. The examples above will guide on the right direction.

Aside from raising the net worth before selling, doing these house upgrades will also give you a comfortable lifestyle while living in your property. This would make every penny you spent worth it.

Start your home improvements today and see your property’s value go up. You can contact us if you want a quote for a depreciation schedule, or you can use our free depreciation schedule calculator that will give you a preview on how much you can save on tax.

So, if you do not yet know anything about real estate depreciation, haven’t yet considered cost planning, etc. Make sure to do as much research on the subject before getting yourself into house flipping!

How to Use CBD Oils

CBD has been standing in the spotlight for a while now. The great attention this chemical compound is receiving is due to the wide range of health benefits it provides. The ongoing rise in popularity has resulted in numerous CBD included products from the pharmacy, food, health and vape industry. CBD products in different forms and way of use are selling everywhere.

CBD is an abbreviation for Cannabidiol, it’s one of the primary components found in the cannabis plant. However, this chemical compound is non-psychotropic and does not get the consumer “high”. Its possible health benefits are related to a variety of health problems and conditions – potentially reducing the pain, anxiety, inflammations and many more.

CBD oil or CBD based products may contain a CBD active ingredient derived from Marijuana plant or cannabis sativa plant – the Hemp plant. This is the first distinction you should be informed about when it comes to CBD products. Moreover, the difference is in the concentration of CBD derived from the different plant as it’ll be explained further in the article.

Whatever product and way of using you may choose it is advisable to consult your doctor first. You should adjust the dosage depending on the reason and the health issue you are experiencing. However, it is recommended to start with a small dose to see how your body will react.

                             “Copyright Flickr/Author: The vape guide / CC BY 2.0”

Directly to Mouth application of CBD Oil

CBD tinctures are highly concentrated liquid extracts, made with the extraction of the CBD from the plant and mixed with a coconut or sesame oil. Except in a form of oil, the tincture can be found in a form of spray also.

Taking CBD from a bottle dropper or with spraying directly in the mouth is a very quick and convenient way to take your daily dose of CBD. It absorbs very quickly (around 15 to 30 min) and this makes it a suitable way for pain and anxiety relieving symptoms.  

If you are taking your dose by drops in your mouth, it is recommended to drop it under your tongue and hold it a bit before swallowing. Moreover, salivary glands under the tongue will absorb quicker than your digestive tract will. As for the spraying, the best way to do it, is to spray the tincture on the inside of your chick.

The downside of this method of using is, that it is a bit challenging to determine the right per-dose amount. Always check for CBD content of the tincture you are using and do a good calculation to determine how drops per day you’ll put in your mouth.

Another convenient way to use your CBD oil is to add some drops to any kind of food you are about to consume. It is commonly added to smoothies, baked goods raw desserts, drinks etc.

CBD oil from Marijuana vs. CBD oil from Hemp

The CBD oil from Marijuana and from Hemp, are both THC- free. However, the marijuana plant contains a lot more THC cannabinoids than a Hemp plant. In fact, this difference applies also to the amount of CBD found in these plants.

Furthermore, a CBD oil extracted from a Hemp plant is usually referred to as a Hemp oil and contains only traces of CBD, while Marijuana CBD oil may contain up to 20%. Therefore, Hemp oil is not more than a health supplement that contains CBD. The CBD oil, on the other hand, is the one that is beneficial in the treatment of the various health issues and symptoms.

Taking CBD Pills or Capsules

The easiest way to consume and precisely determine your daily dose of CBD is by ingesting it in the form of a capsule or pill. CBD capsules come in many different forms and concentrations. However, a capsule contains much more components than just a CBD and it takes longer for our body to break it down and digest it. Therefore, this will result in a delayed effect of the CBD on the body.

It’s a convenient way for people concerned about the discretion of use. Moreover, if you are not pleased with the taste of the oil on the tongue this is a better alternative for you.

                                 “Copyright Flickr/Author: Lindsay Fox / CC BY 2.0”

Vaping CBD

For people that practice vaping here is great news – inhaling CBD through your vaporizer is the most efficient way of using it. Inhaling it in your lungs will deliver the CBD directly to your bloodstream making an instant impact on the body.

Your daily dose of CBD oil can be added to your favorite vape juice; therefore, instantly giving you all the benefits of the CBD while you enjoy the taste of your favorite flavor in your mouth.

Injuries in the Workplace and How to Prevent Them

Getting injured on the job is a risk that no one really wants to think about. Not only do workplace injuries cause damage to your body, they can hurt you in your wallet as well, as injuries can prevent you from returning to work for an extended period of time. While construction workers, police officers, and electricians all have jobs that put them into situations that obviously result in injury, there are plenty of professions out there that may seem safe but actually have the potential to result in serious injury.

Workplace Injuries Are Common

Injuries in the workplace happen every day, and while some professions are more liable to incur injuries than others, the fact remains that they happen more often than anyone would like. Common workplace injuries often result from strains and overexertion from repetitive tasks, office supplies falling from shelves and striking employees, or even something as simple as slipping and falling. Slips and falls account for one out of every six workplace injuries, and poor workplace ergonomics contributed to nearly a third of the workplace related injuries in 2013, so while they might seem mundane, these injuries are actually serious business.

When an employee suffer an injury at work, it is important to know how to move forward. Handling workplace injuries can seem daunting, but it is necessary that it be handled in a timely and appropriate manner in order to ensure the employee has the best chance of recovery, and that a workers’ compensation insurance claim can be filed. Injuries should be immediately reported, and treatment should be sought as soon as possible. Only after these steps are taken can employer and employee reach an agreement and begin to ensure that whatever caused the injury doesn’t happen again.

By far the most dangerous jobs in the U.S. tend to be those involving physical labor, heavy machinery, and elevated working areas. The logging and fishing industries see the most fatalities, closely followed by construction jobs like roofing or structural steel working. While it certainly isn’t surprising that many of these labor-intensive jobs involving work with potentially dangerous machines can lead to injury or even death, there are some less obvious but highly dangerous professions where people are still at risk, even though it may not seem like it from the outside.

Accidents Happen to Everyone

There are unexpectedly hazardous jobs in every sector, even if they seemingly would not pose any more harm than a desk job. Being a pet store worker, for instance, is one of the most dangerous jobs in America due to handling potentially dangerous animals on a daily basis, as well as running the risk of overexertion because of the many heavy items available at pet stores. Ski facility workers are at high risk of injury due to the inherently dangerous nature of extreme sports. Leather and hide tanning and finishing professionals work around incredibly volatile chemicals daily.

Those working in the medical field also run a high risk of suffering work-related injuries. While it may seem like the biggest danger to medical professionals is handling heavy equipment or exposing themselves to hazardous waste, many nurses and doctors find themselves battling workplace violence.  Nurses often find themselves face to face with individuals suffering from mental health issues which can lead to violent tendencies and even outright assault of hospital staff.

The majority of workers will only have to worry about the ergonomics of their office chair contributing to their risk of a workplace injury. However, there are hidden risks associated with every profession, whether it is carpal tunnel syndrome, constant risk of dog bites, or a patient potentially becoming physically violent. No matter what industry you’re in, there are steps you can take to reduce your employees’ overall risk of becoming injured on the job.

Tips on Prevention

Avoiding workplace accidents can be as simple as making sure that your work area is well maintained. Keeping your area clean, providing proper signage regarding potential dangers, and providing appropriate training can all contribute to a safer workplace. Also, avoiding any shortcuts, no matter your profession, can make a world of difference. When you skip steps or dodge protocol, accidents are always far more likely to occur.

Floors should always be kept clean and free of obstruction, as slips and falls are among the most common workplace injuries. Further ways to optimize workplace safety include following all regulations regarding the handling and storage of hazardous or flammable materials, appropriately controlling any presence of insects or pests, and getting rid of any general clutter. While it isn’t the most exciting solution, keeping your workplace clean and following rules and protocols are the best ways to avoid injury.

Another way to avoid workplace injury is to be highly aware of your employees’ surroundings and the dangers they might pose. If they work with heavy machinery, they can become overly comfortable using it, forgetting the fact that it can cause serious damage if handled improperly. Encourage workers to be on the lookout for safety violations — if an individual see a coworker putting themselves into a dangerous situation, they must let them know of the danger and report the situation to their supervisor.

Avoiding workplace injuries isn’t glamorous, and it can often be downright boring. However, no matter your profession, getting injured at work is one of the worst things that can happen. Exercising just a bit more caution can keep your workforce happy, healthy, and working longer without worry.

These 5 Simple Tweaks Will Make Your Office More Productive

When it comes to the productivity of your staff, you need to understand that there are some things that you simply can’t affect. For instance, when it comes to the issue of motivation, promoting, offering raises and bonuses, as well as praising is likely to do the trick but there’s no such guarantee. There are some people who will outperform your expectations and there are those who will underperform or show lack of interest no matter what you do. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t try. You see, you have to do your part in order to create conditions in which those who are ambitious and hard-working enough can thrive. Here are several ways in which you can achieve this by turning your office into a more productive environment.

1. Ergonomic furniture prevents injuries and boosts productivity

The first and the foremost thing you need to focus on is getting ergonomic furniture, seeing as how this is an investment in the long-term health of your employees. First of all, proper furniture creates a smaller risk of injury, which means that your employees are less likely to get injured in the workplace which might lead to an expensive lawsuit. Second, it helps reduce the number of sick days that they take during the injury.

Finally, it helps them avoid some minor health-related inconveniences that could significantly damage their physical health and their productivity. You see, an inadequate seating and desk height can lead to problems with one’s posture. This is more than a slight annoyance seeing as how it can damage one’s ability to think straight and focus on the task at hand. Even some of the greatest chess masters in history were known to engage in physical exercise on a daily basis in order not to allow back pain to prevent them to access their full potential.

As for what you can do about this is to look for a proper way to furnish your office. Due to the logistics of this issue, you need to bring your search down to only local suppliers. For instance, for your NSW business, you should find a reliable office fit out Sydney agency and try to make these arrangements possible.

2. The positioning of the manager’s desk

In a scenario where a manager is sharing an office floor with the employees, chances are that the positioning of the manager’s desk may be crucial in the efficiency of your overall organization. While this may seem like a minor thing, you need to understand just how important it is that you find the right spot. On the one hand, you want the supervisor to have a clear field of vision of the entire floor, yet, you don’t want your employees to feel like they’re being monitored 24/7. Such a thing could make them feel uneasy, which is a major mood- and productivity-killer. Instead, you should look for a suitable Feng Shui principle and place their desk in the corner opposite the main entry point, directly facing it.

3. Task delegation and accountability

The next thing you need to understand is the fact that your employees may not fully realize the importance of their role within your company. Sure, they’re a tiny cog in the machine, yet, you need to make sure they know exactly how big of a difference they’re making. You can start this out by explaining to them where they fit in the bigger picture.

Second, you need to explain to them both potential rewards of a job well-done and repercussions of failing to meet these expectations. They need to understand that all of their actions have consequences and this should help them work more meticulously. Also, give them some room for autonomous thinking, due to the fact that this will demonstrate that you trust them, as well as give them some room to grow professionally.

4. Set realistic targets

Perhaps the most important thing in running a successful business is your ability to set realistic goals. On the one hand, this helps you push your business in the direction that you want it to go in, in small steps. It also allows you to measure your progress, seeing as how each completed task takes you one step closer towards the place where you want to be. As for your team, some of them won’t be in your employ long enough to see you fulfill your five-year plan, so tracking these micro-goals may be the only way to show them that you are, indeed, making progress.

There are also two reasons why it’s important for these goals to be realistic. First, there’s no easier way to get disappointed than to set unrealistic goals. Second, if you don’t make these goals meaningful and challenging to achieve, even if you do manage to meet them this won’t feel like a triumph. Remember, your team needs these small victories in order to keep going.

5. Give them a chance to blow off some steam

When boosting productivity, it seems intuitive that you should invest in tools, courses and bonuses, however, the direct approach is not always the most effective one. By giving your team a chance to blow off some steam by paying for a corporate holiday, throwing a party or investing in your break room, you get to raise the mood and make your office into a more hospitable place. Also, if your employees start seeing you as too profit-driven, they’ll realize that you see them as if they were assets and not real people. Needless to say, this is something you want to avoid at all costs.

In conclusion

By adhering to these five rules alone, you can make your office more efficient and turn it into a place much more pleasant for work. Some, require a slight investment, while others require you to change a corporate policy or two. The best thing about it all is that these improvements are not that hard or expensive to make and they give an instant boost to efficiency, in return.

Reasons Why E-commerce Businesses Should Pay Off Their Debt

Almost 80 percent of the e-commerce businesses fail, according to experts. As soon as you see that your e-commerce business is free from all kinds of debt, your business is going to climb for success. It is obvious that in order to start a business, you are going to require capital. And for this, you have to take loans from either the financial institutions, or you have to opt for other methods of getting loans. No matter which kinds of methods you decide to select, it is important to pay all your debt off according to the time that has been provided. It has been observed that a number of businesses fail to pay their debts because they do not receive any motivation to clear them. As soon as you see that your business is getting returns, you should concentrate on clearing the debts first. The sooner you are able to clear your debt, the faster you will be able to enjoy the returns from your business.

Given below is a list of the reasons as to why you should clear off your debt as fast as possible.

Increases the financial security

Debt is considered to be a huge threat to the financial security of your e-commerce business as it prevents your business from making as well as saving money. The money that you are spending for clearing off your debts could have been used for a better investment for your business. However, this is not going to be a big problem because as soon as you clear all your debt, you can start saving and investing on making your business one of the best in the entire competitive market. As soon as you become free from all the debts, you can start working towards making the e-commerce business financially secure.

Reduces stress

For starting your business from a scratch, it is obvious that you have taken a huge amount of loan. Most of the e-commerce business owners are also worried if their business is going to make enough sales, which will help them to clear all the debts. Right at the beginning of your business, it may not be possible to determine how good you are performing and the sales that you are getting back.

As time passes, the return that you are getting has to be used for clearing all the debts. Until and unless you can clear the withstanding debts, it becomes extremely stressful to carry on. It has also been observed that a number of businesses fail within a few years because they are unable to pay back to the financial institutions from which they have taken the loans. Paying all your debt makes you stress-free.

Reduces the bills that you have to pay

When you have to pay to more than one financial institution, it is your duty to keep a track of all these payments until all of them are clear. As soon as your business becomes free from the debts, you will have fewer expenses and also, you will be able to easily invest for your business without having to worry about clearing the debts.

In order to clear all your debts as soon as you can, it is extremely important to pay a lump sum amount of money for one particular debt and keep paying a minimum for the rest of the debts. This will help you to clear off all the debts, one by one.

Improving the credit score

If you have a lot of debt, it is responsible for having a bad impact on the credit score. When the balances of the credit card are high in comparison to the credit limit, it is obvious that the credit score is going to take a hit. This similar thing is applied when the loan balance is extremely high in comparison to the amount that has been originally borrowed. When you are free from all the withstanding business debts, you can easily raise the credit score. You can go through the debt consolidation loan honest reviews to know more about how debt consolidation works.

Owning the assets

It has been observed that a number of e-commerce business owners take loans against their property, for allowing their businesses to take off successfully. You need to understand that when you are having a mortgage, you are not the owner of your properties; instead, the financial institution from where you have taken the loan is the actual owner.

If you are not able to clear debts within the due time, it is obvious that you have to leave your properties as you lose ownership. However, clearing the debt clearly means that you are getting back your property, and the ownership also goes back to you. You will not have to worry about parting with your personal property, just because you couldn’t clear off the debts.

Increasing the future earnings

You are a business owner and it is in your hands to increase your earnings by providing creative products or services to your customers. You need to promote your e-commerce business with the help of your social media accounts or your business website, in order to gain more customers. You have to have a proper knowledge about your potential customers and the things that they are looking for constantly. On basis of that, you have to attract the attention of the customers and stand out in the competitive market.

As soon as you start gaining customers, you can be assured that your revenue is also going to increase automatically. The more your e-commerce business earns, the more you will be able to save for the future business prospects. Furthermore, you will also be able to clear the debts faster than you could have imagined. Ensure that you impress both your present and potential customers to such an extent that they do not leave your business at all.

Conclusion

Paying off all your debt within a short period of time is not possible practically, but eventually, you should work towards clearing it, especially if you do not want your business to fail miserably. Start clearing your debts as soon as the sales increases and you will be free from the debts.

Workplace Safety Standards: What HR Needs to Know

There are many risks in workplaces that can present a serious danger to the well-being of employees. Even in seemingly low-risk positions, these can seriously impact a business, and a serious incident can potentially shutter operations entirely.

According to the International Organization for Standardization, “more than 2.3 million people die each year as a result of workplace injuries and disease.” This doesn’t count the millions of people who sustain non-fatal injuries at work. That being said, workplace safety is important for all employees. Every employee deserves to work in a safe and protected environment — one that reduces costs to the organization and improves safety in the long run.

While most job industries have safety risks, management and HR should devote more time making their work environment safer for everyone. In order to do so, however, both parties need to prioritize employees and take steps that benefit them. This will not only help improve the work environment, but it will also help improve safety standards as well. With that in mind, here are three things company leaders and HR personnel need to keep in mind while developing safety standards:

Recognizing Potential Dangers

When it comes to recognizing the potential dangers ahead of time, it’s important for HR staff to think outside the box. That’s because every industry has potential dangers. Here are a few examples:

  • In the food industry, there’s always the possibility of foodborne illness reaching the public, and in order to prevent this from happening, HR needs to equip kitchen staff members with the right tools. This includes things like stainless steel appliances, cleaning supplies, and proper hygiene standards. These all help limit the growth of bacteria found in kitchen environments.
  • In office work environments, there are many potential risks. In office areas with many workers, walking paths should be cleared of obstructions in order to prevent slip and fall accidents. Further, being physically near many coworkers can make it easier for the flu to spread, which may necessitate sanitation supplies and health advisories.
  • In healthcare facilities, HR must take steps to protect both patients and employees. In addition to the hygiene concerns mentioned above, they must provide a safe work environment by soliciting employees for feedback and listening to workplace complaints concerning potential ethics violations. Everyone needs to be on board; according to Regis College, “full organizational participation — from executives, managers and all staff members — remains the most important factor in upholding a highly ethical workplace culture.”

Another thing that could cause havoc in the workplace is something most people don’t even pay attention to is plumbing. Having access to high-quality water is important, and the last thing you want your employees to do is to drink contaminated water, which could result in illness, lawsuits, and a bad reputation. That being said, HR should ensure that the pipes holding the water aren’t contaminating drinking fountains. By making sure these things are taken care of, HR personnel can provide a safe work environment for employees and guests.

Keeping the Workplace Free of Allergens

Sneezing, wheezing, and watery eyes can leave any employee unfit for work. That’s because nearly 75 percent of all allergy symptoms affect the victim’s eyes. For some jobs, there are environmental triggers that can cause employees to feel discomfort and make it hard to breathe. Look for triggers like:

  • Chemical fumes
  • Cigarette smoke
  • Fragrances
  • Dust
  • Pets

Allergic reactions can make any work environment unpleasant. For HR representatives, making sure the work environment is well ventilated and has a sufficient amount of humidity is extremely important — especially since doing so can reduce the chances of mold. Dusting the workstation regularly may also help.

Closing open windows to eliminate excess pollen, utilizing humidifier, getting HVAC systems regularly cleaned/replaced, establishing a no-pet policy, and checking for food allergies before potlucks can also make the workplace safer for employees. Although some employees may still experience allergies, workplace accidents should cease to exist as long as you take steps to prevent it.

Common Workplace Accidents & Safety Tips

Generally speaking, when people hear the phrase “workers’ compensation,” they typically envision heavy machinery, employees being exposed to harsh chemicals, or potential hazards around every corner. Truthfully, a work-related injury can happen at any time, even from behind a desk. As noted above, slip and fall accidents are a serious concern. When it comes to office jobs, slip, trips and falls account over 30 percent of all personal injuries.

So, what’s something that can cause employees to slip? Any area that has a wet or oily surface can cause employees to slip and fall. This might include break rooms, door entrances, and restrooms. The weather should also be taken into consideration. In other words, if it’s wet outside from either rain or snow, floor mats should be placed near door areas to prevent employees from falling.

What causes employees to trip? A trip may occur when an employee’s view is obstructed. Poor lighting, blocked or cluttered areas, uncovered cables, wrinkled rugs, and uneven walking surfaces may all contribute to an employee falling over. Luckily, these things can be avoided by making sure that work areas are clean, walking surfaces are even, employees are wearing proper shoes, and staff members are paying attention to where they’re going. Employees should also be encouraged to report dangerous (cluttered, obstructed, or damaged) areas to HR. That way, other employees are aware of the situation.

Conclusion

Regardless of the industry, safety should always come first, and it’s up to HR to get employees to contribute to improving workplace safety efforts. This can be done by encouraging employees to become actively involved. If employees are curious, share workplace injury statistics with them. This will help put things into perspective and demonstrate just how serious these events are, no matter the job type. Lastly, be sure to provide some sort of incentive that rewards them for showing great workplace safety behavior.

How Machine Learning Is Improving Customer Service

Efficient customer service is crucial to the success of client-facing businesses. The $350 billion industry has transformed over the last couple of decades with the mass adoption of the internet and social media, taking the customer service channels for many businesses online. Although the increased connectivity provided by technology has helped facilitate customer service processes, it has also increased customer expectations.

To keep up with these expectations, businesses are finding ways to implement machine learning into their customer service processes in hopes of efficiently handling as many customer inquiries as possible.

Customer Service Needs

Although the internet can often provide answers to almost any question a customer could have, customers more comfortable speaking directly with a person will often reach out to customer service agents. This frequently results in customer service representatives spending large amounts of time answering very basic queries, which can be monotonous and frustrating for agents. To reduce the need for customer service reps to answer these types of questions, businesses have been using AI to offer answers for basic questions before transferring clients to a customer service agent.

This is done both on the phone and online through the use of chatbots that are often employed on a business’ website and Facebook page. Over the phone, automated recordings help navigate customer calls by asking questions that the AI will either be able to answer or transferring their call to the proper department.

Online, chatbots have become a huge resource for businesses to attain customer information, gather feedback, and provide customers with quick responses to standard questions. The use of chatbots and other forms of AI is expected to help businesses manage 85 percent of their relationships with customers by 2020.

Machine learning also facilitates security processes for businesses that handle sensitive customer information. In the past, customers have been required to verify their identity by providing personal information, a process that could take many minutes, especially if a customer forgot their answers to security questions.

However, many businesses are now using two-factor authentication to verify customer identity during customer service calls. This involves verifying two pieces of information: a security question, followed by phone verification. Customer service agents will use machine learning to send a code to the phone number on file with the company, and once a customer verifies they received the code, their identity is confirmed. This approach has improved security measures and can be completed quickly.

Growing Use of Tech in Customer Service

Overall, the use of AI in customer service has increased job satisfaction for customer service agents, as well as help businesses keep up with customer expectations. Businesses need to constantly look for ways to improve customer service. One of the results of implementing AI to help facilitate customer service has been giving customer service agents more time to handle complicated customer inquiries. Increased job satisfaction for customer service representatives and reduced call volume provides them with a greater opportunity to dedicate time and empathy to customers who need a human touch for their inquiries.

As more businesses use machine learning to automate routine tasks and data entry during customer service calls, call time should be reduced, leading to an increase in customer satisfaction. Currently, in a typical six-minute customer service call, 75 percent of that time is devoted to agents doing manual research. Only 25 percent of call time is spent interacting with the customer. AI can streamline this process by memorizing customer information and creating easier routes to accomplish tasks online.

This also provides customer service agents with more time to do important customer service work online, such as responding to customer reviews, which has become a high priority for businesses over the last few years.

As more customers go online to offer feedback or complain about poor experiences with companies, the need to moderate reviews and comments has grown. In the internet age, 88 percent of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Therefore, if a business receives many reviews, they must dedicate resources to responding to them. This will increase customer trust in a business, as well as its ranking with Google.

As more businesses implement AI, machine learning will become the standard for customer service expectations. Although the impact AI will have on jobs within the customer service industry is unclear, the new and rapidly advancing technology will soon provide efficient customer service to consumers looking for help. AI will also help improve the job environment for customer service representatives and open the door for better customer service and increased customer satisfaction. With the implementation of machine learning, the future of customer service looks to be promising.

How to Create a Modern and Stylish Aesthetic for Your Brand

Branding is all about the impression you give to your customers and clients. The question becomes, what kind of impression do you want to give them? Regardless of the type of business you have, presenting a professional atmosphere that is still welcoming and comforting is essential, yet you want to be on the edge of business innovation as well. You want your brand to be memorable, but you want to be remembered by the right reasons. A modern and stylish aesthetic can help you appeal to a variety of customers, from millennials to baby boomers.

However, this can be a challenge. If you are in an older office building or have limited resources, changing the aesthetic of your brand can seem like a huge task. It is often difficult to determine where to start. Here are some tips on how to create a modern and stylish aesthetic for your brand:

Work From the Outside In

The first impression customers and clients have of your brand at your physical location is the outside appearance. There is often little you can do about this when it comes to the building you are in, but there are some touches you can improve on to make your brand more appealing.

  • Your Sign and Logo: Your sign and logo may be outdated. If you have not changed them in a while, give them a fresh look. You can even get a logo created by artificial intelligence if you really want to be hip.
  • Your Door: Even if you are inside a building, you might not have much choice about certain parts of the decor, but you can install a new door for your business, or add a window decal or other touches to make a better first impression.
  • Window Coverings: If your windows are visible from outside or even the hallway, consider updating your window coverings to ones that give a more modern and stylish look. Don’t forget color and the impression it makes on clients.

The first impression customers or clients get of your business is the outside, and no matter what your limitations are in your commercial building, you can work to make a better first impression and make your brand modern and stylish from the outside in.

Remodel the Interior of Your Business

Once customers enter your business, they get an entirely different perspective. The atmosphere of your business is set right away. This involves everything from color to the way you use your space. Want a more modern and stylish aesthetic? Here are some simple tips:

 

  • Color: You should never overlook the psychology of color when decorating your office or any other space. Color has a certain effect on customers and clients, and knowing how that relates to your aesthetic is truly important. Throw pillows, window coverings, and even the color of your furniture and lampshades make a huge difference.
  • Lighting: Harsh, fluorescent lights are common in buildings and office spaces, yet they are often hard on your employees’ eyes and give your clients and customers a very flat impression. Add modern lamps, light fixtures, and other unique lighting wherever you can.
  • Furniture: Older tables and chairs, especially ones that are outdated or worn give a negative impression. Don’t forget comfort though. Form and function are both important when it comes to furniture.
  • Creature Comforts: Things like a modern fireplace when it is cold or a stylish bladeless fan when it is warm give your office a modern and sleek look, but also ensure that your customers, clients, and employees are comfortable.

There are other things you can do to improve the atmosphere as well. Smart furniture often includes USB plugins for charging phones and other features, and installing devices like Alexa or the Apple Home Pod to allow your smart furniture to be voice controlled is a great idea.

Your employees will love smart desks that can show them calendar alerts, phone messages, and even remind them to stand and walk around. The interior of your business and the comfort of your employees, customers, and clients is one of the best investments you can make to create a modern and stylish aesthetic for your brand.

Improve the Look of Your Employees

There are two ways to control the look of your employees: One is to have uniforms, and the other is to have a dress code. Uniforms, if opted for, should be fun, stylish and updated frequently as fashion changes. Adding fun accessories like colorful ties and hip and stylish suspenders can help you attract and keep new customers.

Even if you don’t have uniforms, a well-defined dress code can keep all of your employees on the same page and create an innovative culture that will also attract the right customers and clients. This can mean including brands in your dress code, specific colors, and the type and style of clothing that is acceptable.

Many companies offer employees a clothing allowance to ensure employees can be in compliance regardless of their financial situation. Improving the look of your employees is another great way to create a modern and stylish aesthetic for your brand.

We all want our company to be as hip as Google or as fun a place to work as Facebook. We want new customers and clients from millennials to baby boomers to be impressed by us. To accomplish this, making your brand aesthetic modern and stylish is essential.