Which Startups Require a Specialist Vehicle

Two men working to move boxes into a house from their work van

Many different businesses require different kinds of vans.  Needs vary across industries, with some businesses carrying out specialist tasks or managing loads too heavy for a panel van – some need custom vehicles for specialist tasks that a standard panel van cannot meet.

But, if you’re considering starting your own business, how do you figure out which van you need? Well, it depends on the goals of your business. 

Making sure you have the right van for your business needs will save precious time, meaning you can work more efficiently and get more done.

 

Landscaping

Landscapers have several things they need to think about when choosing a van. While they need space for tools and equipment, they also need to think about space for removing green waste.

For landscapers, a dropside lease is ideal to fit these considerations. In a dropside, the flatbed is easy to access when the sides have been lowered. But If you’re expecting to remove waste, a dropside tipper lease would be much more convenient as the tipping load bed empties the waste in moments, not requiring additional labour and time.

 

Building

Builders have many materials that need to be transported to and from site such as bricks, cement, sand, and timber. Here, dropside tippers are convenient too, as they allow builders to easily load and unload their tools and materials. If you haven’t already, you should make your dropside tipper a cab crew so more than six people can fit in one van.

 

Waste removal

To be an efficient waste removal company, you need to carry as much waste as possible to dispose of. In this industry, a caged tipper lease would be the best – the wire mesh cage keeps waste secure and allows for easy unloading.

 

Furniture delivery and house moving

Due to the differing shape of furniture, it isn’t stackable for transport. This can make space precious and also unpredictable. For this industry, a Luton box lease is a consideration, as these vans have more space than standard panel vans. They are usually fitted with hydraulic tail lifts to make loading and unloading easier.

 

Van hire

Specialist vans begin with the bare essentials – the chassis cab of a large vans. Additionals are added on to meet individual specifications for industries in van leasing deals. For example, popular vans used for specialists are the Vauxhall Movano, Ford Transit 350, and Mercedes Sprinter. The Volkswagen Crafter is becoming more popular, but this is considered a high-end model with a price tag to match.

7 Must-read Books for Aspiring Marketers

Marketer

Marketing is one of the things that make a business successful. If you have a good idea, product or service, but do not know how to sell it, you will not make money. Turning prospects to customers require the help of a good marketer and marketing skills.

Marketing is all about the activities a company takes to endorse the purchasing or selling of a product or service. Advertising, selling, and delivering products to customers or other businesses are all part of marketing.

Influential and affiliate marketing can help in boosting the sales of the company. The marketing department of the company needs to be updated on the different trends in society. This is because marketing experts need to get to their targets by connecting with them.

Some marketing moves may involve celebrity endorsements, catchy phrases or slogans, media exposure, and excellent packaging. Marketers – make use of the marketing mix (product, price, place, and promotion) to convince buyers.

 

What is expected of a marketer?

As a marketer, you need to be updated with all recent trends amongst your target consumers. Doing market research and analysis will help in getting the required information. 

If you are an aspiring marketer, you need to know that the business world is fiercely competitive. Your business needs healthy ideas that make your strategy unique, and you can improve this by reading books from seasoned experts. 

We have put together a list of seven marketing books to read and improve your marketing strategies.

 

1. 2017 Non-Obvious: How to Think Different, Curate Ideas & Predict the Future by Rohit Bhargava

What are some of the trends that affect our businesses which several people are not aware of or do not even think about? This is typically the information you will get in the 2017 edition of the book “Non-obvious.” 

Rohit puts together 15 new trends and 60 past forecasts that will aid any business make a more significant impact. Marketers need to read about the future of marketing and which strategies will successfully influence customers and earn customer trust and loyalty.

 

2. Blue Ocean Shift

Blue Ocean Shift: Beyond Competing – Proven Steps to Inspire Confidence and Seize New Growth by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne

This book is a must-read for all aspiring marketers. It is all about taking your business from a fiercely competitive market known as the red sea to new markets that have not been adulterated or touched the authors refer to as the blue ocean.

The blue market is filled with unexploited opportunities. Most businesses are already accustomed to using the same strategies. The book helps you think beyond the standard marketing norms and develop your own fresh, unique approach. 

 

3. Future Marketing

Future Marketing: Winning in the Prosumer Age by Jon Wuebben

The future is ours to build, and we can make whatever we want of it. In this book, the seasoned marketing writer Joe compiles recent research, data, and predictions from different fields, to show how cultural and technological changes will affect the marketing industry.

He further talks about how content marketing and marketing technology will change.

How will marketing practices look like in 2021 and 2030? Future marketing is your guide to get more insight into the future of marketing and how to plan your strategies.


4. GetSocialSmart: How to Hone Your Social Media Strategy by Katie Lance

Are you a new marketer and not yet familiar with how social media works? GetSocialSmart aids you figure out the leading platforms to use and how brands can use the media platforms successfully. The book focuses on creating a well-branded social media strategy to ensure long-term success by creating a full-proof customer acquisition and retention plan. 

As a marketer, you will also need to learn how to use the different social media technologies plus live streaming to tell the story of the brand and build relationships with customers.


5. What Customers Crave

What Customers Crave: How to Create Relevant and Memorable Experiences at Every Touchpoint by Nicholas Webb

This book talks about how companies can get accustomed to changing customer needs and wants by identifying their target audience’s likes and dislikes. It shows that you have to build essential and engaging experiences that generate brand loyalty to comprehend your audience.

 

6. A Practitioner’s Guide to Account-Based Marketing

A Practitioner’s Guide to Account-Based Marketing: Accelerating Growth in Strategic Accounts by Bev Burgess and Dave Munn

The book is written by the two people who introduced account-based marketing as a strategy for business growth. The book provides a detailed guide to comprehending, investing in, and successfully establishing ABM strategies.

The book uses companies like; Cisco, IBM, and Microsoft as their case studies. This helps to give a practical guide that can be used by any company.

 

7. Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini

How do you persuade someone to say yes? The basic of marketing is getting someone to agree to your proposal. This is always easier said than done – people are still coming in contact with things they love but hesitate to make a purchase.

Though a customer is reluctant to buy, you still want to sell your product. In the book “Influence,” the author spells out how thoughtful words and a convincing prowess.

If you are an aspiring marketer searching for new approaches/strategies in marketing and ideas, you can relate to your marketing tactics. The books listed above are some of the best marketing books that you can read. The books will aid you to comprehend recent trends and strategies for all marketing types.

Marketing is a complex and continuously evolving field. With digital marketing pushing us into a new era, the learning curve is always around the corner. Every marketer needs to realize that they have to be a student of marketing for life in order to master its various aspects. 

To continue your marketing education, check out this list of the best marketing books by Cool Things Chicago, which will help you in your journey. 

5 Key Traits of Successful Business Leaders

Successful Leader

In these unpredictable times, business leaders are searching for ways to lead their teams to success and adapt to current events that have thrown many companies for a loop. Good leadership is difficult in times of change and crisis, and many managers are realizing that the many tried and true business strategies of the past are not applicable to the current state of world affairs. 

Many managers are choosing to adopt management styles that are more focused on keeping their team lean, agile, and adaptive. The ability of organizations to stay flexible is more important than ever, given how unpredictable the future is today. Moreover, much of the conventional wisdom about management has been turned on its head due to the adoption of new technologies that have significantly changed the business culture of many companies.

Managers must be swift in adapting to these many cultural, technological, and political changes. Let’s explore five key traits of successful business leaders that are particularly relevant in our current moment. 

 

1. Good Leaders are Good Listeners

The assertiveness and confidence that is often associated with being a good manager causes many business leaders to overlook the importance of being a good listener. The importance of these more passive skills can’t be underestimated. One of the most crucial prerequisites for being able to manage an employee is to truly understand what they’re going through and how they feel.

Without this knowledge, managers are stabbing in the dark when attempting to incentivize productivity and punish transgressions. Attempts to steer employees towards achieving company objectives can actually be counterproductive if the feelings and life situation of the employee is not taken into consideration. Conversely, managers that intimately understand the values and motivations of an employee will see him or her go above and beyond their normal responsibilities.

The amount that a truly passionate, inspired, and enthusiastic workforce can accomplish defies limitations and expectations. Workers that are evangelized by a common company mission, and feel that their thoughts and needs are heard will give everything they can to make the organization they believe in successful. 

Too often do managers offer a carrot and a stick to employees without learning about their genuine values, drivers, and passions. In the face of this treatment, many employees see through the shallow and ill-conceived incentives promoted by management and choose not to take them seriously. This guide by the New York Times breaks down how to become a better listener and could be worth a read.

 

2. Good Leaders Inspire a Vision in their Team

Managers should have a clear vision of what they are trying to achieve and be able to inspire this vision in their subordinates. A leader’s vision should be clear and meaningful. 

Some managers make the mistake of making the vision they convey to their team too vague. Others make the mistake of conveying a vision that is dry and devoid of emotional substance. A vision should be specific, measurable, and inspiring. 

That’s a tricky combination, but it’s crucial to set a vision that your team can rally behind and tangibly work toward. Sharing this wisdom will make workers feel like they are part of a collective whole that is working together towards the same goal. Without a vision, employees are more likely to be isolated and self-serving which can lead to infighting and conflict in an organization.

This article by the Washington Post explores the role of developing a vision when leading a team. 

 

3. Good Leaders Understand Customers

In order to inspire confidence in their team, leaders need to understand the needs that they are serving. Successful companies provide value or solve problems for customers, but in order to do so they need to understand their customers. Getting familiar with the market research conducted on a brand’s customers can help to provide a guiding light for management and employees to work towards.

Organizations that lose touch with the customers they are serving are doomed to waste time and money offering solutions that aren’t needed. Too often, these organizations become too internally directed, with managers and workers focused on their own agenda within the company rather than on customers.

Good managers should embrace a spirit of selflessness by putting the needs of customers first. They should continually direct the attention of their team towards the experience of customers and the problems they are struggling with. This article by Digital Authority explores how the process of researching users’ experience is a crucial part of the product management process.

 

4. Good Leaders are Master Communicators

With the adoption of sophisticated new technologies in many businesses has come a stronger focus on the importance of hard skills in the workforce. While possessing sharp programming, analytical, and mathematical skills is vital for many managers, often far more important is their ability to communicate effectively. Managers that become overly fixated on technicalities will tend to cause conflict within the organization that will make everyone’s job harder.

It’s often a better approach to let technology specialists advocate for a particular tech preference while the management team remains focused on big-picture concerns and on resolving disputes between workers. If a leader feels that their view on a particular issue is correct, despite the doubts their subordinates might have, it’s important that their view is expressed in a clear, firm and diplomatic manner. 

A good manager takes no pleasure in exerting his will over that of other team members, but when it is necessary, does so calmly and tactfully. Conversely, a bad manager will relish the opportunity to exercise power over others. This sort of egoic behavior can be catastrophic for morale, and can undermine that manager’s authority over time.

This piece from the LA Times dissects a study from Google that explored what makes a good business leader and why effective communication is so important.

 

5. Successful Leaders are Always Learning

Particularly in today’s fast-paced digital world, stagnation and close-mindedness are a good leader’s worst enemy. Effective managers are constantly learning new skills and expanding their set of skills. Doing so allows them to communicate more easily with different team members that might possess their own unique expertise.

Constantly keeping an open mind and approaching business from a perspective of learning will also allow them to foster a more diverse work environment that accepts and encourages all sorts of different perspectives. Bad managers, on the other hand, are stubborn and stuck in their ways. Refusing to embrace new ideas, they insist that it’s their way or the highway, which makes their subordinates feel ignored and disrespected.

Good leaders should be able to listen intently to ideas that they staunchly disagree with. They should not punish team members for expressing those views, and instead use it as a chance to take a second look at their position. Tackling business problems with a spirit of curiosity will also help leaders develop a positive attitude when dealing with adversity.

When workers see that their boss has the humility to approach different issues with a spirit of learning and open-mindedness, they will be motivated to do the same.

Lucky Orange: Software that Helps Convert Website Traffic to Sales

Lucky Orange

Lucky Orange earned the title of the ‘Best Conversion Optimization Tool’ for 2021, thanks to its software’s ability to help businesses gain insights into how they can grow their website conversion rates – and ultimately their sales – by understanding visitor behaviour. With a newly launched redesign of its brand and a major product update in the works, the company is setting a new standard for website conversion software.

Lucky Orange offers a unique opportunity to business that have an online presence with its top-of-the-line website optimization software. Providing exemplary and intuitive software that works seamlessly with a customer’s existing website, it can provide a customer’s online platform the help it needs to become a true growth asset for the company. Lucky Orange helps businesses of all sizes and across many industries gain insights on how to improve their websites by understanding what people are really doing when they are browsing their websites.     

In this way, it not only helps its clients to reach a wider market more effectively and easier, also it gives them the leg up they need to compete in a quickly globalizing world. The company’s conversion rate optimization software includes dynamic heatmaps, session recording capabilities, form analytics, surveys, conversion funnels and a live chat feature.

The innovative platform and its personable, supportive approach to customer service, helped      Lucky Orange accrue a customer list of over 300,000 websites. By using dynamic heatmaps, session recordings and other Lucky Orange tools, customers come away with an enhanced understanding of what people truly experience on their website by seeing visitors navigate their sites first-hand.

Alongside this, it facilitates a learning experience regarding conversions: the steps visitors take before converting, which conversion-focused elements are effective, and which are not. This helps businesses ensure everything about their website is impactful and relevant to the people they wish to entice into completing pre-determined and desired actions on their website, such as signing up for a newsletter or buying a product.

Lucky Orange also helps businesses connect with their customers directly through its live chat and survey tools. Business owners no longer have to wonder what their customers are thinking as they browse their websites. They can ask them directly via live chat if they need assistance or survey them to gain insights on the products or services their customers wished they offered.

Every member of staff at Lucky Orange is valued as a part of the product team. The leadership at Lucky Orange ensures everyone’s ideas are heard and valued, translating this collaborative environment into collaborative customer interactions. Furthermore, Lucky Orange is an employee first culture. To take care of its customers, it first takes care of its staff, supporting them so they can deliver the best service available. This creates an environment of passion and accountability in a healthy working environment. As more businesses have pivoted to online operations, it has found itself busier than ever, and its team has risen up to meet the challenge head on.

In the e-commerce sector specifically, Lucky Orange bore witness to tremendous levels of growth across the board in 2020 and into 2021. Its customers had to deal with new competitors emerging in the market to older and more established brands having to quickly ensure they were able to keep up with rapidly changing dynamics created by a global pandemic. The shift from brick-and-mortar shopping to e-commerce presented a good opportunity for smaller retailers to compete with the high traffic of more recognizable companies. Consequentially, Lucky Orange saw its subscriptions rising steadily throughout 2020, and this momentum has carried it into 2021. This company made itself an indispensable business partner for many. 

In addition to supporting high growth in its customer base, Lucky Orange is rolling out a      redesign of its product complete with more than 65 new features alongside a total brand refresh. These exciting developments and updates will be drip-released piecemeal throughout the rest of the year, and customers should look forward to an interface that is better than ever as it blazes its own path towards a bright future.

For further information, please contact Danny Wajcman or visit www.luckyorange.com

Financial Solutions for the 21st Century!

Financial Solutions

Finance have moved on significantly over the last few years, embracing the possibilities of what technology has to offer. The team at Oxygen are a literal breath of fresh air in the industry, offering something for the 21st century economy. Named Most Innovative Digital Business Banking Platform 2021 – USA in Corporate Vision’s 2021 Corporate Excellence Awards, we take a closer look at the secrets behind their inimitable success.

Traditional financial institutions are well behind the times when it comes to offering a banking platform for the digital age. There is a whole world of digital natives, creators and entrepreneurs ready to move forward and seize the potential of a whole new frontier, but they are limited not by their own ideas, but the systems that surround them. The creation of business banking platforms like Oxygen are key to the growth of industries and economies around the world.

The world has seen a monumental shift in the workforce, with a new creator class rising to the top. The team offer an incredible range of services for the large segment of the economy, which currently stands at 68M people and seems certain to rise to 90M by 2028. The move away from full time employment to project-based work by many entrepreneurs has changed the shape of how many businesses work. While the segment goes by several names – solopreneur, freelancer, creator or simply entrepreneur – the universal unifying factor is that they are often overlooked.

As such, the team’s platform has been carefully designed for the ultimate in convenience for their customers. It guides the entire attitude of the business. Many of these individuals are millennials or Gen Z, and this requires a different tone and approach to traditional providers. It is a tone which is more authentic and less stuffy. To achieve strong connection, the team has collaborated with trusted platforms and influencers to achieve their astonishing results.

Of course, no advertising campaign would be a success if the team could not deliver exceptional results. Fortunately, Oxygen has been able to produce an app that makes life as easy as possible for those who are often overlooked in the world’s rapidly changing economy. Both personal and business finances can be easily accessed and managed within the same application. Aspiring entrepreneurs can even create a Nationwide LLC within the app. Its versatility does the team credit.

Oxygen also enables people to access standard consumer and business spending accounts, savings accounts, cashback on everyday purchases, as well as retail and travel benefits like cell phone insurance and global lounge access. It’s a comprehensive solution that encapsulates everything that a modern banking solution should look like. Unlike traditional options, Oxygen is light, agile and able to adapt quickly to suit the needs of the client.

The team’s unique knowledge of the industry comes from a position of experience. They have seen what it takes to be entrepreneurs and know how easy it is to overlook their contributions. When Oxygen was established, it was designed to cater specifically to the needs of these people. The core values of the firm, enabling them to flourish in this new and exciting environment, have been consistent since the first day of operation. There’s a simplicity to keeping with what drives you to stay on the path, and the work that the Oxygen team does empowers their clients to trust their instincts.

Technology has enabled much of this change, but the world of fintech as a whole is generally conservative and resistant to innovation. Oxygen stands apart because it embraces the potential of technology. In this newly emerging economy, it’s not enough to maintain a legacy viewpoint. Oxygen is a team that is happy to consider rebuilding swaths of its infrastructure if it ensures better service for its clients. This might, for example, include rebuilding part of a stack to enable better user experience.

Having launched just before the COVID-19 pandemic, the team have seen incredible change at an amazing pace. Theirs is a business which puts digital first, and it’s little surprise that as people were unable to talk and communicate in person, they would find new solutions online to the challenges faced by their businesses. The traditional adoption cycle that new technologies go through was leapfrogged in short order, supercharging not only the change, but the need for a team like that of Oxygen. While there will inevitably be some pushback against this as the situation returns to normal, the Oxygen team are confident that this will also be a short-term trend. As far as they can see, you simply can’t put the genie back in the bottle.

The nature of being a start-up means that it is vital that the right people are found to put it in the best possible position. This is as true with Oxygen as it is with any other business. Finding the right people, however, is not just about choosing the smartest minds, but through exploring how those minds will connect together. Oxygen has become an incredibly diverse team, and this is very much by design. The leadership believe it is a superpower that ensures they can continue to thrive throughout even the most difficult of times, as the COVID-19 pandemic has proven. Having such an approach at the heart of their work means that the team’s direction is always one of intentionality.

As a result of this, Oxygen is always able to push forward. The team are not just brought together to work but are a family who believe in what they do. There is, at Oxygen, no sense of ego. While everyone who works at this small firm is constantly pushing forward, the amazing level of respect that has been maintained is only achieved thanks to the decision to be adamant about the lack of ego within every part of the business.

After nearly two years, Oxygen is proud to be continuing along the trajectory of building the best banking platform for innovators. In keeping with their ambitious manoeuvres, they have planned for many exciting new products and announcements to come later this year. For those who want a banking platform that looks forwards, this is the team to turn to. And for those who want to be part of it, this is the team to join.

For further information, please contact Hussein Ahmed or visit https://oxygen.us/

The Storytellers Heralding in a New Age of Business Communication

Communication

As the ‘Most Outstanding Tech-Focused PR Agency 2021’ for California, LMGPR has been quick to secure itself as a cornerstone business during the pandemic. Helping its clients to find new public relations and communications methods, it has been hard at work to ensure that no business under its care lost sight of how to reach the market segments they need to operate within.

LMGPR, in essence, are storytellers, influencers, and market shapers. Being the marketing and public representation agency with the latest innovations and processes at its back, it has endeared itself deeply to its clientele, each of whom can expect the right story, the right audience, and the best results as a direct consequence of its work. Its efforts allow clients to reach out to the market segment that their products and services will best serve in the most effective manner possible, delivering incredibly efficient and sophisticated ways to operate in the dynamic and ever-changing media landscape.

Its flagship product, LMGPR Pulse, has therefore been built up from three key components. Each of these components are elements that follow LMGPR throughout its business, and have been in implementation since its inception, ensuring that this company can develop on top of a solid core foundation. Critically, these principles are strategic positioning, narrative story engine, and social influence. By finding ways to leverage each of these things in a contemporary, online marketplace, it will be the catalyst of further growth for its clients in everything from their leadership to their momentum and expansion; its efforts also create new business opportunities, increase sales, and create space for them to become a market leader.

Each of these elements is made possible by its experience, knowledge, and understanding. Over the years it has been in operation, LMGPR has been working hard to gain an in-depth, broad, and expansive knowledge base that it can implement when serving its clients, both of the wider market and the ways certain businesses fit within it. Therefore, it has been able to use these elements of its operation to create a new and systematic approach to public relations that will help its clients to use this knowledge to their benefit, representing the most effective and sophisticated way to drive business success in a diverse corporate ecosystem.

In a world where means and formats of communication change on the daily, LMGPR keeps time with the beating drum of progress, guaranteeing its clientele a certain peace of mind that its services will be tailored to match. By keeping itself thoroughly adaptable and using the concepts of art and science both, it manages the subjective and objective features of public representation, whilst not losing sight of its client’s core company goals and mission. Instead, it seeks to use these aspects of its client’s operation in order to create a personable and effective communications strategy.

It supports the marketing, branding, and positioning of its clients’ businesses in their journey to continually get ahead in their respective markets, securing business development, strategic partnerships, new product development, sales, and more; in short, it ensures that a client has time to focus on the things that truly matter, whilst LMGPR handles the professional way to communicate its activities to the wider world. The Loughlin/Michaels Group, founded in 2002, was the starting blocks that LMGPR launched from, led by the eponymous Donna Loughlin Michaels – an experienced PR professional in her own right – and empowered by her tenacity, creativity, and problem-solving abilities. Each of the skills and talents of its founder has emboldened LMGPR further in its sprint to the forefront of public relation program development for businesses, made even more outstanding by Michaels’ experience in leading such programs for early-stage technological investors.

Therefore, with knowledge of how to take a new and brilliant innovator from start-up to IPO and even acquisition, LMGPR has secured its reputation as a comprehensive, exemplary, and highly effective public representation company. Its work has become, above all else, synonymous with guaranteed further success. Due to this, LMGPR’s current team is able to consistently live up to this repute with its insightful, expert, and full-service network of communications options, with staff handling everything from editorial, social media, analytics, and industry contact creation. Every account team is led by a professional with a decade of experience under their belt, able to guide those under them seamlessly.

With such a flawless internal organisation that promises LMGPR’s sustainability long into the future, and constantly dependable results for its clientele, its customer service and end results have worked together to make it a true darling of its industry. In addition, by making itself a strategic partner for its clients, its agency team has been able to launch hundreds of market innovators into their deserved spotlight, cultivating their businesses into the next best thing to be seen across a variety of different sectors. Its reshaping and revamping of company image has aided clients across all manner of markets as a result, from the automotive industry to IoT, cybersecurity, robotics, wellness, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, customer lifestyle, and so much more.

LMGPR has also received countless accreditations as a result. With a number of different awards to its name, earned by way of its continuous excellence in leadership, creativity, media relations, and innovative public relations, it has secured its notoriety as a foremost guide in the changing media landscape. It recognises how difficult this can be to navigate – both for newer businesses and even for established enterprises – and so its services invite them to leave nothing to chance, granting them the ability to leave their company’s image in the hands of people who will make it fit the contemporary paradigm perfectly.

During the past year, this has been especially pivotal as many companies found their previous marketing and outreach material no longer effective, either due to a message that did not fit the changing world, or due to a tone that was not appropriate to a global pandemic. LMGPR, due to this, has been helping more clients than ever to find their way through the labyrinth of creative destruction cycles that has been accelerated over the past 18 months, allowing them to find better delivery methods and formats whilst the client continues to focus on the core goals of their business. It will be continuing to provide this as it moves forward towards the rest of the year, taking its clients with it into the fast-emerging new era of public communications.

For more information, please contact Donna Loughlin Michaels or visit www.lmgpr.com

Streamlining Cloud Financial Operations

Finances

Strategic Blue is a cost-cutting, financial operations, and cloud procurement specialist, which has helped companies reduce, control, and optimise costs. An integral part of the supply chain that every company should be taking advantage of Strategic Blue has cleverly positioned itself in a way that is unique to the industry.

Strategic Blue is a financial services organisation, specialists who help companies buy cloud on terms to suit their needs. It specialises exclusively in cloud procurement, cost management and optimisation.

In an ever more technology-reliant world, the cloud has become necessary to the ways that companies do business. Strategic Blue makes sure that organisations can optimise their long-term cloud costs and accelerate their innovations. Not only does Strategic Blue remove cloud procurement barriers, but it also works with its clients to develop their sophistication, governance, and assurance processes.

With Strategic Blue’s help, its customers improve and streamline their cloud financial operations, or “FinOps”. The specialists empower cloud customers to buy in the way they want, understand exactly what it is they have bought, and continuously optimise their cloud costs, saving money.

Strategic Blue’s goal for the future is to optimise supply chains in the global cloud computing market to create value for all participants. Strategic Blue holds itself and its team to six core values that dictate the way they approach all aspects of their work. These are:

  • To be transparent and fair
  • Regard major achievements as team efforts
  • Apply intellect in all they do
  • Show and expect to be shown kindness and respect
  • Be willing to learn constantly
  • Focus on successful outcomes for all parties

When you work with Strategic Blue, these six values are readily apparent. The company works hard to explain, in an open way, its business model to its customers and clients. The team explains exactly how they make their money, and how they will provide a win-win-win situation.

Strategic Blue has found that its customers love this openness, as it proves the company has an honesty that can be relied on. As what Strategic Blue does can be quite complex, the constant willingness to explain and present to its clients is viewed as extremely helpful. All of this wraps up into the company’s desire to create successful outcomes for all parties, which is key to good business.

These core values have remained resolutely in place since the company’s inception in 2010, even while the way that Strategic Blue achieves its goals has developed and become more sophisticated over time.

Because cloud use has become such an integral form of technology, Strategic Blue’s customers can be found in all manner of industries, ranging from small start-ups to large corporations. Strategic Blue has worked with businesses in the public, healthcare, education, FinTech, EdTech and HealthTech sectors, and it uses multiple modern means to set up these partnerships.

As Strategic Blue forms such close partnerships with its customers, those customers become champions of the brand. One of the most successful ways Strategic Blue acquires new customers is via referral from their current customers.

In addition to this, the cloud experts employ social media strategies. They share their educational podcast, use their LinkedIn presence and their content creation to support education in the market, and arm businesses with tools to succeed in order to ultimately attract new clients. Strategic Blue also works with vendors to get in touch with new customers, such as through its work with Amazon Web Services (AWS), which often introduces it to clients who need its services.

Until 30th July 2021, Strategic Blue is also offering free financial operations reviews to a limited number of businesses. These reviews analyse cloud usage data and give a score based on how well optimised it is. They give cost-saving recommendations and show exactly how much you could save, and the even greater savings available if you partner with Strategic Blue.

Strategic Blue gives their clients advantages and cost-saving solutions that competitors in any given market may be missing out on. Clients benefit from additional discounts that they wouldn’t get had they gone directly to cloud vendors. Strategic Blue works as a third party that elevates purchases and services for all involved. The team are experts in the necessary integration between the technical and financial needs of business.

Its Financial Solution Architects (FinSAs) have technical engineering backgrounds. It gives them a dual expertise in finance and technology that allows the FinSAs to give an elevated level of service and guidance, as they have a much deeper understanding.

The way that Strategic Blue positions itself is useful to its clients. The cloud experts take financial risk in order to provide its customers with better pricing than available direct from cloud vendors. They feel it is a unique approach that no one else in the cloud reseller industry has taken advantage of.

As well as this, they have a service wrap to their tooling, rather than being self-service. It means that, although the company doesn’t have competitors directly competing across the same scope, in the individual areas that another does offer similar solutions, they are never quite the same and can’t match the extent of Strategic Blue’s offerings.

Overall, Strategic Blue’s customers get a great, ongoing service. It is one way for them to make sure they are getting the best prices on the market for their cloud, and the ongoing partnership allows them to make the most of their purchases, while continually getting greater savings.

The team at Strategic Blue has to be a unique one, in order to compete on the scale that they do. The employees work extremely hard to provide outstanding service. As a result, the company has grown significantly, even throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the last six months, there have been 10 new employees join Strategic Blue, who have all made fantastic contributions to the company. They’ve joined the marketing, customer success, development, sales, finance, and pricing departments. When hiring new employees, it is a high priority to ensure that they look for individuals able to work well both independently and as part of a team.

This is because it is very important to Strategic Blue that its employees embrace both working collaboratively and continuously improving their skill set. Not only is this encouraged, but collaboration is made into a regular practice, and the company actively encourages employee development by providing training courses to advance the skills of each team member.

During the last year, as part of the continual efforts by Strategic Blue to look after employee wellbeing, the company has hosted online social events, mental health training and team-building exercises for all employees to ensure that each member of the team is still able to engage with each other, while safely working remotely.

As companies across the country and the globe have discovered, working remotely poses many problems, not only to employee wellbeing but to the ease at which business can be carried out. For a company looking to continue scaling, the reduction in the ways of getting in touch (such as the closure of public events, an inability to meet potential customers face to face or to confer in offices) has been challenging. Customer outreach has been hindered more than ever, and new, efficient methods have had to be developed.

On the flip side, for Strategic Blue, as other companies have become disparate entities, cloud services have become ever more important. In addition, companies have had to become savvier to survive, and exploring cost-saving avenues such as Strategic Blue’s services is one of the sure-fire ways to reduce overhead costs. The FinOps specialists have seen more inbound interest and referrals as a result of people knowing of organisations facing cost challenges and making recommendations.

Even through all of this hardship, Strategic Blue has been able to put funding towards COVID-19 research initiatives which have not only helped with challenges presented to society by the pandemic but has helped with employee wellbeing, knowing that they, as a company, are doing their part.

Strategic Blue plans to continue optimising supply chains in the global cloud computing market, creating value for all participants. The company seeks to help more people get the best value for their cloud usage while being able to procure it in a way that suits them. The team is currently expanding with an office opening in the US to help their customers there more locally. Within five years, this is to be matched with global operations, reaching beyond the UK, the US and EMEA.

For further information, please contact Hannah Dempsey or visit www.strategic-blue.com

Data Designed for Daily Use

Cloud Data

In a world where data is at the heart of every aspect of our lives, easy access to that data is vital. The cloud has presented a unique solution to many, but providing these services is not always easy. When customers turn to OVHcloud, they turn to a service that is designed for normal people to access. We take a closer look at how this open cloud service has reached for the sky in this issue of Corporate Vision.

The cloud opens the door for many to achieve their wildest ambitions. Like most new technologies, this has previously been limited to those who have the budget and resources to access it, but the approach taken by the team at OVHcloud has been to create an alternative. Their work is designed with the freedom to build and the local resources to solve the challenges of hosting valuable data.

In short order, the team at OVHcloud has become a global player, proudly earning the title of leading cloud provider in Europe. Operating over 400,000 servers within its own 32 data centres across 4 continents, the team have an incredible capacity that ensures its users are always able to access the services they require. This is due, in no small part, to the commitment to leveraging an integrated model that runs across the entire supply chain. OVHcloud has designed its own services, manages its data centres and orchestrates its fibre-optic network. This not only makes it unique within the industry but has enabled 1.6 million customers to access their services from 140 countries.

This impressive production chain is a clear result of the strong values which the team champions. Driven by a desire to build trust, to work together and to act in a way that is passionate, disruptive and responsible, they have achieved something that other providers have not. Their value-based management enables them to provide customers with secure cutting-edge solutions at a competitive market price. Many have seen the challenges involved in the cloud, but the team’s approach has enabled them to react faster and more quickly than the competition.

The team has built up a strong repertoire of customers that hail from a variety of different backgrounds and industries, with a host of different needs. Serving people from start-ups to small businesses, from resellers to large enterprises is not easy, but the service that is provided by OVHcloud lies at the heart of them all. Each customer is recognised as unique, with their own demands, but the same desire to manage their data and work with complete freedom. The digital world is currently fragmented, and the cloud offers a way forward that binds it together. By building a strong eco-system of companies and organisations who are committed to defending the same values of trust and collaboration around data confidentiality and reversibility, OVHcloud will be able to have an impact beyond corporate boundaries and within the world at large.

For businesses, OVHcloud offers some truly astonishing programs that enable them to receive an invaluable end-to-end experience. Each is designed to meet the needs of specific groups and can be tailored to create an even more successful journey. The Startup Program, for instance, has helped over 1800 companies around the world in the last six years, with 200 members being currently active. The team support their projects, enabling them to reveal their most disruptive aspects. The Partner Program is a network of managed service providers, systems integrators and resellers who advise and support their own customers by combining their expertise with OVHcloud infrastructure. This offers partners around the world a sustainable advantage and has proven incredibly successful.

Similarly, the Open Trusted Cloud Program is aimed at software vendors, as well as software-as-a-service (SaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) solutions providers. The aim is to build an ecosystem of PaaS and SaaS in cloud computing – hosted in the business’s open, reversible, scalable and reliable cloud infrastructure. It’s clear from these three programs that OVHcloud doesn’t just offer services to individual companies. It builds community that wasn’t previously there, for the benefit of customers and OVHcloud itself.

This approach has proven essential to many businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the team moved quickly to ensure that their clients were able to manoeuvre appropriately during this difficult time. The priority, naturally, was the healthcare crisis. Many businesses moved to offer remote working, collaboration, online learning and healthcare application/data solutions. With such high demand required, and so many working together, the team at OVHcloud decided to offer free infrastructure for six months during the crisis. This carried with it no commitment, so clients could get back on track and work out how best to proceed after the fact.

This ‘Open Solidarity’ initiative helped and supported traffic spikes for websites that fell within the business sectors of education, healthcare and unified communications. Websites and infrastructures receiving free services also benefitted from free maintenance and support during this very difficult time. If one thing has been learned from the last twelve months, it is the demand for digital services and the need for business continuity solutions. While companies are moving towards cloud solutions, current economic uncertainty means IT budgets reflect risk reduction. Investment in the correct IT infrastructure is more important than ever, with the capacity to address fluctuating demands from peak periods and seasonality a key component in adapting to this new landscape.

The future, therefore, looks like one that will see a shift towards a hybrid working model – a mix of office based and remote working. While this opens the door for more business for OVHcloud, it also presents new challenges. There are greater demands to maintain privacy of data and security that must be met alongside the shift for many companies towards a Multi-cloud solution. This involves companies meeting their new IT needs by working with a range of cloud service providers. Ensuring that data is safe across these multiple suppliers is a new and exciting challenge for businesses to face.

It’s clear that 2020 changed the way in which people work, and this is a change that will not revert. The digital transformation has been accelerated across public and private sector industries, enabling people to take advantage of increased agility and productivity as well as improved collaboration. When the team at OVHcloud look to the future, they look at the way in which sustainability, data privacy and security will shoot up the priority list for businesses, who’s needs they must place front and centre in any decisions that are made.

As the team marches into 2021, they look forward to working with new and exciting partners as part of the European GAIA-X initiative. This reflects an industry-wide commitment to data transparency and security, drawing on over 300 members from 18 countries. With new developments such as a trusted public cloud offering for data-sensitive businesses in partnership with T-Systems as well as collaborations with Google, IBM and Atos in the offing, it’s clear that OVHcloud is not just at the forefront of the industry, it is leading the way for companies around the world.

For further information, please visit www.ovhcloud.com

One-Stop Shop for all Home Services

Cleaning Company

Fantastic Services was established in 2009 when two like-minded individuals started a small cleaning company in London. A decade later, it is a one-stop shop revolutionising the way people book cleaning, gardening and landscaping, handyman, pest control, plumbing, removals, and electrical services, and all in between for their home and office. Today, Fantastic Services is a multi-service global company with a franchise network of more than 530 partners, serving over 50,000 satisfied customers monthly. Join us as we find out more about the business and explore how it earned this issue’s Most Outstanding Cleaning and Home Services Franchise 2021 – UK award.

A leader in the property maintenance industry, Fantastic Services is successfully leveraging its extensive portfolio of over 100 services globally and converting it into high-margin franchise opportunities across three continents – Europe, Australia, and North America.

Its philosophy revolves around the simple idea of delivering an excellent service experience for all customers and crews involved. Each day of the week, it sets out to make yet another 360-degree circle of happiness by doing whatever it takes to keep everybody satisfied. Fantastic Services’ mission is to create services people love, using technology where possible and heart where it matters.

The company boasts a flexible franchise model, which allows companies to start with a single service package and gradually grow their business, adding more services and tradespeople. The Area Development and Master franchise opportunities grant exclusive rights for, respectively, an undeveloped region in the UK and a whole new country. Fantastic Services’ franchisees’ businesses have become the one-stop shop for all home services to local customers who become avid fans of the convenience they offer to them.

Best known for its award-winning franchise support, flexible business model, and disruptive technology, Fantastic Services is always persevering towards the best results for its customers and franchisees. Its 10-year goal is to help 1,000 franchisees build a business worth over £1,000,000. It is already proving this possible, with several Area Development franchisees being proud million-pound business owners.

Many of its competitors and other companies find that “family feeling” can suffer a significant blow as they grow. It is quite a challenge to simultaneously improve the business and still hold on to that team dynamic that was an essential part of getting the whole business off the ground. And Fantastic Services meets this challenge every day. All franchisees operate in different industries and have various challenges, and Fantastic Services admires how different they all are, while at the same time, continuing to foster family values.

In the past 12 years, Fantastic Services has created a fantastic community of young, innovative and motivated people with whom it reaches new heights every day. The truth is, no matter how big it gets, the company will always care about its fantastic family. At the end of the day, family is not only about joy, but it also takes a lot of work and responsibility.

Its 500 in-house expert staff in, marketing, customer care, IT, sales, accounting, and other areas, work together like a well-oiled machine. Each department has its own unique function and output, but when all of them are brought together, they form a fantastic unit. They, together with its franchisees, are the driving force of Fantastic Services.

Fantastic Services serves over 50,000 customers monthly and its membership programme, Fantastic Club has a growing network of over 25,000 active members. The company always takes an individual approach to each customer, and it makes sure all its partners deliver services in line with its standards.

As Rune Sovndahl, Co-Founder and Board Chair, came directly from the tech industry, Fantastic Services was part of the first wave of businesses in the home services industry to offer online booking. It’s a trend which has become a requirement today.

The company has invested over £20 million in a custom-built CRM (Customer Relationship Management) with two integrated mobile apps. The software addresses the home maintenance business’ specific needs and is an all-in-one place to manage team and client communication.

With many cost- and time-saving capabilities for optimised service provision for anyone who operates as part of the network, the system connects all the data from the apps. It automates the customer booking process, optimises the technicians’ schedule organisation and connects everything seamlessly.

Meanwhile, the pandemic led Fantastic Services to a new level of excellence by pushing it to rapidly develop and launch new, more lucrative services that turned out to be a great success. For instance, it developed antiviral sanitisation and disinfection services in just a couple of weeks. The company’s zeal for innovation was recognised by the Franchise Innovation Award 2020, where it won the award for Most Innovative Service Introduction.

In order to support its clients and franchisees during the pandemic, Fantastic Services had to come up with creative solutions to combat the decline in sales.

Firstly, together with its franchisees, Fantastic Services launched a campaign that offered two hours of free domestic cleaning for all key workers in the UK. As a result, it has supported more than 400 key workers, delivering 360+ hours of free cleaning. The campaign exceeded the company’s bravest expectations by bringing in 1,500 new bookings to its franchisees’ schedules.

Trying to be as transparent as possible, Fantastic Services aims for people to see the real face of franchising and the countless opportunities, and benefits that it offers. Consequently, the company saw not only a spike in the franchise enquiries it received, but it also signed over 20 new Area Development franchisees from the beginning of the pandemic.

In April, it launched its grant programme which provides those who lost their job or small business due to the pandemic with up to £5,000 that covers the initial expenses of starting a Working franchise with Fantastic Services. Since the property maintenance industry has suffered less than other sectors, the company wants to support the UK economy and provide a viable alternative to employment through franchising and help anyone restart their career or business in a high-demand industry.

Anton Skarlatov, Co-Founder and CEO of Fantastic Services commented, “We started Fantastic Services in 2009 with just £5,000 of our own money, and today the business turns over £9.5m, employing hundreds of staff across three continents as we continue to be self-financed. We have always reinvested profits back into the business, and our new grant programme is designed to help empower more domestic service workers to be their own boss.”

Fantastic Services also actively strives to minimise the negative impact on the planet and have a positive effect on the global and local environment, community, society and the economy overall. To meet the triple bottom line, it introduced its new Sustainability Policy, which can be viewed on the company website.

Apart from giving all customers the chance to take care of their homes or offices in a more eco-conscious way, Fantastic Services believes that its franchise model is no less sustainable. It builds small businesses that support local communities. Its franchise enables everyone who wants to start a local business to invest in branded franchise systems and, through hard work and the support by Fantastic Services’ side, create equity in their business. This way, independently owned and operated businesses can deliver a consistent and sustainable brand promise to all customers.

For further information, please contact Christina Koleva or visit www.FantasticFranchise.com

Why Running a Small Business Is So Difficult, and How to Make It Easier

Small Business Owner

From gaining more control of your time to being in charge of things, owning a small business comes with a set of incredible benefits. However, it doesn’t come without a fair share of challenges either. Despite common misconceptions like, “small businesses are easier to run since you choose your working hours and you’re the boss”, many SME entrepreneurs run into challenges along the way. These include challenges that feel insurmountable and others that could bring the business to its knees in a flash if not carefully navigated.

Well, what we are trying to say is that being a small business owner is nothing close to a bed of roses. It’s an arduous undertaking, not forgetting the aspect of risk, competition, and scarcity of resources. Let’s decipher why small businesses are hard to run and how you can make it easier.

 

Why Running a Small Business Is So Difficult

If you talk to some of the most successful guys (the frank ones), they will tell you that success doesn’t come served on a silver platter. Some school of thought believes that if running your businesses feels difficult, there are some things you’re not doing right. Well, there is so much truth in this!

 

You have a lot at stake:  

But again, running a small business can be difficult because, for starters, you are threatened by the fear of failure. After choosing the right model, you also need to continually research the market, figure out the best marketing strategies, and strive to ensure your operations are streamlined. Furthermore, resources can be scarce, especially if the business is still young.

 

The boss and the worker:  

As a small business owner, you could be the one handling HR issues like paying your employees, dealing with investors, and keeping track of bookkeeping issues. If you’re an independent contractor, figuring out what to pay yourself is a common hurdle, plus you have to keep track of the deductions and taxes required from you. Luckily, you can always use a reliable paystub maker when dealing with salaries, taxes, and deductions – thanks to features like auto calculations. It is also a handy tool when you need to have proof of income/employment because a paystub provides more information than a bank statement can.

 

A lot on your shoulders:  

You simply have a lot on your shoulders before the business can stabilize, grow, and start expanding. Since most of your mind, focus, and efforts are all aiming at success, you may not always be in the best spot to make critical decisions rightfully.

 

The Reality of Working for Yourself

Truthfully, working for yourself is a fulfilling experience. It might take some time, patience, effort, but the rewards are always worth the while. Nonetheless, being an entrepreneur requires great dedication, consistency, and boldness. It takes understanding that failure is a possible occurrence amid the various challenges that face small businesses globally. This should encourage you, even more, to do things right every time. When working for yourself, here are some take-home tips you should find helpful.

  • Failure is a slight possibility
  • You will probably experience stress and fatigue
  • Your client base feeds you
  • Poor cash flow management can cripple your business

 

How to Tackle the Challenges of Entrepreneurship

Understanding the challenges ahead is among the first and most important things to do when getting into business. This way, you can have mechanisms in place to avoid or navigate them. Perhaps the tips below can help you tackle the potential challenges better as a small business entrepreneur.

  • Become a dedicated ambassador for your brand
  • Have realistic goals of what success should be
  • Evaluate yourself as a person… your habits
  • Accept that failure is a possibility but avoid it
  • Network and seek support
  • Become a good money manager
  • Delegate tasks
  • Always put the customer first
  • Have deep knowledge of your industry and what you’re selling
  • Have time for yourself

 

How to Save Time

Time is like a gold mine when it comes to business. A few seconds or minutes wasted could cost your business millions of money. Luckily, there are many ways to save time and maximize productivity while improving efficiency these days.

Plan your time well using schedules and diaries, utilize time-management technology, and always perform regular assessments. These will go a long way in freeing time, so you have extra hours to focus on what matters most for your business, as well as some for your social errands.

 

How to Manage Your Cash Flow

Finally, cash flow management is a critical aspect of small business ownership. The last thing you want is to lack enough funds to pay your recurrent bills, workers, or suppliers, just when your business is showing some real signs of growth. This brings in the need to regularly monitor your cash flow and stay on top of your due invoices.

Utilize cost-cutting measures in various departments, including operations, procurement, and production, and even HR. You could also lease equipment rather than buying. If you can, hire an experienced accountant to take care of bookkeeping and accounting. The best approach will largely depend on your specific business needs.

If you thought that running a small business is a walk in the park, you have more than a few reasons to think again. The truth is, it takes quite an amount of effort and perseverance to see a new venture through to success. The few pointers above should help make it easier and much more fulfilling for you as an entrepreneur.  

How to Automate Your Business Processes with Salesforce

CRM

With a CRM, you can automate your business processes to be more productive and efficient. CRMs allow you to manage all of your customer interactions in one place without having to switch between different software programs. Salesforce is one of the most popular CRMs on the market. It has a variety of features that you can choose from to tailor it to your company’s needs.

Keep reading for a high-level overview on how Salesforce works, what benefits it offers, and why you should consider using it for your business today!

 

Introduction to Salesforce

Before we get into the different features that Salesforce offers, let’s go over what it is and what it does. Salesforce is a customer relationship management (CRM) software that allows you to keep track of your customer relationships in one place.

Businesses use this software to keep track of their existing clients, get updates about new customer relationships, plan and analyze their business operations, contact customers for updates and tasks, and collaborate with employees across different locations. You can use Salesforce to automate many of your business processes.

To dive deeply into everything Salesforce can offer your business, you should consider Salesforce implementation consulting, such as from RTS Labs. A consultant will allow you to go through a guided setup of the software before you get started.

 

Benefits of Salesforce Automation

Automation has many benefits for your company. Here are a few benefits of using Salesforce for automating your processes and collecting data:

 

Improved Sales Cycle

Salesforce’s sales scheduling and forecasting feature can improve your sales cycle by improving the accuracy of your forecast and predicting sales results by months and quarters. It can help you find out what leads to buying your products and create a marketing strategy based on your prospects’ needs.

For example, you can have the system automatically send reminders to potential clients with the right amount of lead nurturing that will help them feel comfortable about your company, and in turn, give you more opportunities to make sales.

 

Customer Engagement

The Salesforce app offers a robust customer engagement solution that can boost your customer service and enable your employees to give real-time customer service.

By using this app, you can have your sales reps send personalized responses to customers and build brand awareness and trust. It can also empower your staff members to better engage with customers and improve customer loyalty.

 

Improved Communication

The Salesforce app can help you strengthen your business communications. It allows you to send reminders, close deals, answer questions and collect customer feedback in a matter of minutes. All of these tasks can help you enhance the customer experience and build better customer relationships.

 

Streamlined Operations

By using the Salesforce app, you can eliminate paper and automate many processes in your company. You can better manage your workflow and also collect data more easily.

You can give more accurate forecasts and schedules, allowing you to meet your deadlines and make quick decisions. The tool can also help you improve employee morale by giving them opportunities to perform tasks they are passionate about.

 

Using Salesforce to Automate your Business Processes

Now that we have discussed some of the benefits of Salesforce, let’s go over how you can use it to automate your business processes.

Salesforce offers several tools which you can integrate with automated workflow processes. These tools are Approvals, Process Builder, Workflow, and Flow Builder. Each of these tools work in tandem to help you achieve your goals. To help you get started, we’ll go over the basics of each of these tools.

 

Salesforce Approvals

You can use Salesforce’s Approvals tool to track and approve customers that you have contacted in your Salesforce CRM. The tool allows you to add phone numbers, locations, specific people, hours, and notes to a Contact Confirmation record. You can also review your approvals at any time to ensure that you’re not missing any of your leads.

 

Process Builder

The Process Builder helps you keep track of all your sales, appointments, and order status. You can use this tool to upload your emails and create a work item from them.

You can then assign this work item to your reps to have them do follow-up tasks for your leads. You can also create tasks and assign reps to these tasks with an automatic workflow for the details of your tasks.

 

Salesforce Workflow

The Workflow tool is one of the most comprehensive workflows in the Salesforce CRM. It allows you to integrate your CRM, other tools, and marketing automation tools to help improve the workflow for all your customers.

With this tool, you can automatically create reminders when you haven’t engaged with a lead or customer in a specified time. You can also assign reminders and follow-up tasks to your sales team using your Salesforce CRM. The tool also allows you to share work items, which allows your sales reps to collaborate and get feedback from each other.

 

Flow Builder

The Flow Builder gives your sales team access to the complete customer journey. It allows you to visualize and track all of your customers’ interactions with your organization. You can track a customer’s experience, including when they placed the order, when the order was shipped, when they received their products, and when they returned their products.

The tool also allows you to visualize your sales pipeline in real-time, giving your sales team the ability to prioritize customers based on recent engagement and recent sales.

 

Conclusion

All of the automation tools offered by Salesforce are designed to streamline your business processes and save you time. You should look into using these tools to ensure that your processes are more efficient and effective, saving you time and increasing the success of your company.

6 Ways on How to Protect Yourself Against Online Frauds?

Online Fraud

Online frauds are a growing problem. In the last few years, the number of people suffering from this crime has been increasing exponentially. The reasons for this are many, from lack of education to increased digitization and increased mobility. However, there are ways to protect yourself against online frauds.

Here is a list of six steps that will help you keep your personal information safe while going online.

 

Educate yourself on common fraud techniques

To protect yourself from becoming a victim of identity theft, you need to stay up to date on the latest online scams that cybercriminals are using. We’ll share with you some common tips, and you can read this helpful article on preventing online frauds from IdentityGuard, but cybercriminals are constantly evolving and changing their methods to keep up with cybersecurity practices.

Thus, you should also be vigilant and sign up for newsletters from the cybersecurity industry.

 

Securing your devices

The first and most important thing you can do to prevent identity theft is to lock down your devices. Make sure you’ve configured all your devices to be password protected. You can do this by opening the Settings menu on your device, going to Settings > Security & Privacy, and choosing to Enable Password Locked Mode.

This will require a PIN to unlock your phone, tablet, or laptop, but the inconvenience of having to type in a PIN will be worth the added security. If your devices are all set up and locked down, it’s time to focus on your apps. The best way to prevent identity theft is to be diligent about keeping your apps and the content within them secure.

 

Avoiding phishing scams

With so many people connected on the internet today, a phishing scam is hard to avoid. Hackers look for people on the internet and send you fraudulent emails posing as reputable companies or family members.

According to some sources, on average it takes over 150 hours of man-hours for a company to recover from a data breach and restore all of the stolen data. It is for this reason why it’s important to be cautious with your information online.

Make sure you double-check every email you open or web page you navigate. Don’t click on links or attachments, especially if they don’t look right. It’s also a good idea to reset your passwords on any accounts that you use frequently on the internet.

 

Using a Payment Platform that Protects Your Credit

According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the average credit card company holds on to information about 60 million consumer credit and debit card accounts, representing a combined credit card debt of $1 trillion.

If a credit card or credit bureau fails to protect your information or that of a third-party, it could negatively impact your credit and the ability to take out loans or open new lines of credit. You should review and understand your credit card companies and credit bureau’s security policies and make sure that your information is not at risk by transferring it to a third-party.

 

Don’t pay outside of shopping platforms

On e-commerce websites with individual sellers, always use the platform’s payment processing. Do not agree to payments outside the e-commerce platform. If the seller asks you to pay outside the e-commerce platform, that’s a red flag.

 

Include two-step verification for your banking and credit card accounts

This means that you need to input your bank’s or credit card’s username and password, along with a verification code. This will ensure that you can’t be tricked into giving up your password. Two-step verification is often referred to as two-factor authentication. You can find more information on 2FA from PayPal and Bank of America, for example.

 

Don’t keep passwords and credit card details in Notepad files.

If you have difficulty remembering your passwords and banking information, it’s tempting to just put them in a text file and save it on your computer. This is a terrible idea for several reasons. Number one, if you ever get a trojan virus, it could scan your documents and get all of your passwords.

Secondly, even if you delete the files, they aren’t truly deleted from your hard drive. They can sometimes be recovered with tools that have the ability to retrieve the data.