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11 Reasons Why Working With a Contract Manufacturer Is Smart Business

June 20, 2019


This includes world-leading companies such as Apple, Boeing, Nike, Adidas, John Deere, etc., as well as small and medium-sized startups with specialty products. Leading contract manufacturers provide services that primarily focus on two critical areas:

  • Efficiency: Areas related to lead time, available resources, skill sets, engineering, and development to full production launch.
  • Economically: Areas that impact costs including design for manufacturability, production tooling/lines, raw materials, labor, logistics, and more.

These two areas are the driving factors behind the utilization of contract manufacturing by the most successful startups and the largest technology companies in the world. Below I have illustrated some key reasons how contract manufacturers can add value to your business.

Investment savings

Outsourcing your product to a contract manufacturer unties you from spending on operational and maintenance costs of machines and equipment. Another benefit is your company isn’t be responsible for salaries, wages and other benefits for the operators. Companies also find it beneficial to outsource production to countries with lower wages.

Product savings

Contract manufacturers specialize in producing products with unique processes and materials. With extensive experience and know-how, capable contract manufacturers introduce new methods and materials that can reduce your costs without jeopardizing the quality of your product.

 IP confidentiality and protection

Dealing with a contract manufacturer that has IP protection protocols set up reduces the risk of your IP leaking. Having one centralized and vertically integrated contract manufacturer who controls product design, tooling, production and supply chain reduces the chance of your IP ending up in the wrong hands.

Allocation of resources

Using a contract manufacturer to manage your supply chain and build your product can free up crucial resources that can otherwise be redeployed to other vital areas such as sales, marketing and distribution. Attempting to manage a large number of vendors, arranging …

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4 Industries That Can Benefit from Presentation Management

June 11, 2019


Businesses rely on presentations to promote and sell their wares, but these crucial assets – used to drive business – tend to be a hodge-podge of PowerPoint slides, images and videos scattered across network folders, emails and various hard drives. 

Whether it was an entry-level marketer or the head of sales, all these assets were painstakingly created for an important meeting and include a well-spring of information that can be re-used, if only someone can find them. When presentation assets are scattered across the business network, it leads to employees scrambling to piece together a one-off presentation. Without the proper strategies in place, it becomes too easy to just grab an existing slide with target demographic numbers, even though it has the old company logo on it. Even worse is when they combine that slide with a graphic that includes outdated figures. The business looks sloppy, and it can even result in fines and lawsuits.

What is presentation management?

To rectify the process, businesses across every vertical are turning to presentation management, which puts a strategy behind your company’s presentation content. Presentation management starts by housing all presentation assets in one location and ultimately automates and streamlines the creation, distribution, sharing, tracking and updating of presentations content. As a result, your team spends less time making decks, and more time presenting them. 

Who benefits from presentation management tools?

While presentation management strategies can be applied to any business, the industries that stand to benefit the most include:

Travel

Nothing sells a resort, hotel or cruise better than beautiful images and videos of exotic locations. Having a repository where all videos, images and other files are automatically formatted as slides and ready to present makes it easier for the sales rep to showcase the beautiful beach at sunset, the decadent dinners …

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Rebuilding America's Infrastructure Would Ignite Small Business Growth

May 21, 2019


Seizing this bipartisan opportunity could have a profound impact on America’s small businesses.

It’s no secret that infrastructure in the United States is lagging behind. The latest report card published by the American Society of Civil Engineers gives our country’s infrastructure a D+ rating, and 1 out of every 5 miles of highway pavement is now in poor condition. But you don’t have to be an engineer to realize our infrastructure needs attention.

Americans now spend about 42 hours – nearly two full days – stuck in traffic every year, and our crumbling infrastructure costs the average family about $3,400 in disposable income annually, according to analysis by ASCE. From pothole-pocketed roads and collapsed bridges to limited cell service and poor broadband access, every American can see that this is a problem in dire need of a solution.

Less discussed but no less important is how America’s deteriorating infrastructure is stalling small business growth and crippling our economy.

Small business owners’ concerns about infrastructure

Through interviews with 1,000 small business owners last quarter, the MetLife & U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Index shed light on the impact infrastructure has on small business operations. Most business owners say that high-speed internet (64%), local roads and bridges (57%), and cell networks (55%) are very important to the success of their companies.

The problem is, 62% rate the quality of local roads and bridges as average, poor or very poor. Forty-three percent said the same about the quality of the high-speed internet in their area, while 41% reported that cell service is average, poor or very poor.

Overall, about half of small business business owners worry that U.S. infrastructure is not keeping pace with technological advancement in other nations, according to the index.

When asked where to focus improvements, 85% of …

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Rethink Corporate Social Responsibility and Turn Social Good Into a Business KPI

May 15, 2019


They have generally shown earnest efforts to reduce their carbon footprints, improve equality in the workplace, and extend the sustainability of their resources.

That’s no longer enough though. In a world of ever-widening social, economic, and environmental gaps, corporations must step up and take on much bigger roles to make a more meaningful impact on society. Whether it’s tackling poverty, hunger, discrimination, education, healthcare, climate change, or sustainability, corporations can and should do exponentially more to improve these global conditions while still maintaining their competitiveness. Our future depends on it.

A perfect storm for more dramatic change is brewing. In a recent Edelman Trust Barometer survey, 73% of respondents stated that they expected a company they worked for to “take specific actions that both increase profits and improve the economic and social conditions in the communities where it operates.” 

From research and personal experience, I know that employees, customers, and partners all want to work for and with organizations that share altruistic values to do more social good. And millennials, in particular, an increasingly larger percentage of the workforce, want to work for organizations that make a positive difference in their communities.

Unfortunately, while employees, activist investors and increasingly customers are driving large corporations in this direction, it is still hard to find Fortune 1000 companies (Dannon is a notable exception) among the 2,500 B-Corporations that balance purpose and profit. Moreover, we still see very few CEOs even mention social issues in their regular communications, and even fewer are integrating societal goals into their primary corporate strategies.

It’s clear the time for a dramatic change is now. But how? I think the answer is to begin incorporating quantitative business metrics into CSR programs, whether it’s key performance indicators (KPIs), executive incentives, or positive outcomes from technology and innovation programs. …

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The Connected Intelligence of NOW and How It Can Help Your Company's Efficiency

May 8, 2019


 

Today, organizations are shifting strategies to simplify their meeting experience, expedite the meeting experience, and dramatically reduce the friction caused by outdated systems. It’s all about the New Optimised Workforce (NOW).

Intelligent interaction

The culture of NOW is having access in an instant to services that remove the barriers to effective communications delivering a seamless experience for the workforce to operate more efficiently. The benefits of collaborative meeting solutions are enormous including, the reduction of unnecessary IT or technical costs, simplifying the infrastructure, the elimination of futile travel, improving the architectural security posture, and much more.

New communication solutions are constantly being introduced into the market. According to global consulting firm Deloitte in their Global Human Capital Trends Report 2018, “The hyper-connected nature of the workplace means that interactions between and among workers and the outside world can be a tremendous source for analysis if managed appropriately.” In addition, “70% of respondents believe workers will spend more time on collaboration platforms in the future, 67% see growth in ‘work-based social media’ and 62% predict an increase in instant messaging.”

In fact, this is also supported by findings from the StarLeaf cloud data intelligence, where the growth in global cloud-based point-to-point video conferencing usage has increased by 880% (October 2014 compared to October 2018). This data intelligence is vital to assessing the usage and productivity of solutions to show the return on investment. The knowledge enables enterprises to understand video meetings trends and how they are helping employees collaborate more efficiently. With increasing pressures to meet tight deadlines, the need for people to swiftly reach out to field-based teams and cater to a growing remote workforce is becoming more prevalent.

Transformative enterprises are now seeking intelligent meeting solutions to support these four critical initiatives:

  • Intelligent debate: Smarter systems provide both
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20 Top Career Paths for the Tech Geeks

May 1, 2019


Are you looking for an attractive career opportunity to pursue? Keep on reading and find out some of the best career paths that will work best for you.

1. Data scientist

By being a data scientist, you will need to understand the algorithms behind data science, engineer data sets and communicate solutions that are tailor-fitted to the specific needs of the client. You can work with big brands and you can also choose to pursue a freelance career if you are seeking freedom. To start with, check out MastersinDataScience.org’s Data Scientist Guide and learn how the latter can help you build your knowledge and skills to be able to pursue an opportunity in data science.

2. Computer systems analyst

In this modern age of business, companies rely on the use of computers. Therefore, they will need an expert with the main responsibility of evaluating and improving the computer systems in an organization, making sure that it is fool-proof. According to Forbes, the median salary is $78,000 and the demand for this position is expected to grow as much as 22% from 2010 to 2020.

3. Software developer

When we talk about jobs for tech whizzes, being a software developer is one of the first things that come into mind. If you are good at programming and creating software solutions that will meet the needs of an organization, you are in for a treat. Some of the specific job roles include coding and testing new software, troubleshooting existing software, and collaborating with the stakeholders to develop the right software.

4. Mobile application developer

In an age when people are always on their smartphones, there is a huge demand for a mobile application developer. Basically, you will need to develop a mobile app that satisfies the needs of a business. You …

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Top 9 Industries For Virtual Reality

April 24, 2019


Virtual reality is likely not what you expect. You probably associate it with gaming, entertainment ads in malls, or movies like Ready Player One. But today virtual reality has been adjusted to serve various industries that seek new innovative ways to achieve success. Although there are many ways and spheres to apply this technology, some fields can benefit highly. 

1. Retail

VR technology is an excellent tool to increase profit and attract customers in retail. People have shown their appreciation of e-commerce service and are eager to go further. 70% of customers admitted they are strongly interested in virtual shopping.

Virtual reality experience provides customers with a completely new level of service from an ability to try on clothes while at home to decorating a room that is not even built yet. Variety of solutions makes it a highly applicable and adjustable tool. Big companies like IKEA, eBay or Topshop have already put VR into practice, each of them in their unique way. While IKEA suggests their customers a tour to a virtual kitchen of their dreams, eBay has built an interactive personalized catalog for easy shopping.

2. Health care

We all hope one day there will be no diseases and the world will be a perfectly healthy place. But until then we should keep developing the health care industry and the latest technology is what can help. Virtual reality is among them.

VR in healthcare can be useful for both patients and doctors. People receive therapy with VR applications to fight fears and phobias. There already exist solutions aimed to educate and share experience: virtual surgeries, emergency training, VR anatomy applications. There was even a live stream of an operation – that’s how far it went.

But this is only the beginning. We have just started discovering the full …

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Want to Launch a Business? Why You Should Consider Acquisition Entrepreneurship

April 23, 2019


Launching a business from the ground up is a difficult road lined with numerous potholes. That’s why some entrepreneurs find more success from buying an existing business and molding it into something new.

The first company I acquired was a book-printing business. People told me I was crazy. The industry appeared to be in decline, and no one from my generation was entering that space. But the company had long-standing relationships with hundreds of publishers, was full of knowledgeable talent, and had a long track record of solid performance.

What my critics missed was an underlying trend that was showing solid growth. Digital book printing was driving a golden age in self-publishing, online ordering was providing new authors with accessibility to readers, and short runs were bringing the advantages of just-in-time inventory management to publishers. I decided we would build on what this company had while embracing the new trends. It’s what’s called acquisition entrepreneurship, or the philosophy of “buy then build.” By embracing the best of both worlds, we are able to bring a startup approach to an existing, and often undervalued, infrastructure of an old-economy business.

Every industry has a life cycle, from startup and adolescence through maturity and decline. When a business reaches these later stages, the trick is to make the leap from a mature or declining business back to the adolescent stage.

For instance, manufacturing and distribution are old-economy business models. But today’s’ consumer demands instant access, round-the-clock accessibility, and fast turnarounds. Already, almost half of business-to-business institutions offer their full product line online, according to a CloudCraze survey. These growth strategies are how small business-to-business organizations succeed in the new economy. The trick is in getting the balance right.

Why acquisition entrepreneurship?

After all these years, we haven’t found a way to engineer …

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How to Increase Your Restaurant's Profits in 2019

April 19, 2019


Arguably one of the most competitive business markets today is the restaurant industry. With so many restaurants for people to choose from, finding your niche can be a difficult task. If you’re looking to grow your restaurant and increase your profits, not only do you need to offer exceptional service and a wonderful dining experience, you need to master business and management tactics as well. Ready to turn your restaurant into a major success story? Here are several important strategies that can help you increase your profits this year.

Do Your Research

Owning a restaurant is extremely difficult. From managing employees, balancing finances, implementing marketing campaigns, and pleasing customers, you have to do it all – and no one can be an expert on everything. If you’re ready to expand your restaurant, taking time to conduct research will help guide you in the direction you’re trying to go. Regularly reading restaurant management blogs will give you keen insight from industry professionals on best practices for running your restaurant efficiently. With so many resources available at your fingertips, you can educate yourself on restaurant management practices that help you save money on costs and increase your profits.

Cut Down on Food Waste

We’re all guilty of it, even at home. America is the leading country in food waste, costing billions of dollars each year. One strategy for increasing your profit margin is to focus on cutting down food waste. Start by investing in a food waste tracker. These devices measure food and have a camera that monitors food waste so you can keep an eye on what’s being thrown away (and why). If you still end the day with a surplus of food, you can donate it to food banks to receive a tax break.

Another way to cut …

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8 E-commerce Trends to Watch Out for in 2019

April 16, 2019


Online shopping has successfully integrated itself into nearly every facet of modern life, with customers being able to purchase almost anything off the internet and have it shipped directly to them with just a few clicks of a button. However, despite the growing importance of e-commerce in the modern economy, many professionals from all walks of life are still unfamiliar with the rules and trends that are coming to shape the contemporary business world.

E-commerce remains more important in certain areas of the world than in others, but it’s becoming increasingly obvious that even developing economies are embracing its power and adopting new regulations to tame the growing digital marketplace. For those who don’t want to be left behind by changes in the e-commerce industry, here are 8 e-commerce trends to be aware of in 2019, and how they will continue to drive the digital economy into every corner of our lives. 

1. Continued importance of mobile devices

Mobile phones and tablets have long been important parts of everyday life and business alike, but we can expect them to take on a renewed significance in 2019. More e-commerce businesses are realizing that if they’re not luring in mobile customers they’ll struggle to make any profit whatsoever. This is leading e-commerce web design into a pro-mobile direction. Immensely popular e-commerce giants like Shopify are already issuing guides on how to be accessible on mobile devices because they understand that modern entrepreneurs who can’t cater to the smartphone generation are unlikely to ever succeed.

2. Chinese e-commerce giants come into their own

Another e-commerce trend that will become readily apparent in 2019 is that the Western monopoly over the digital age is quickly coming to an end. Chinese e-commerce giants are rising at just as rapid a pace as their American and …

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