An Inside Look at How Small Business Owners are Using Apps

ABIGAIL THORPE | February 8, 2017

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More and more owners are using apps to help run their businesses, simplify tasks, and cut down on busywork. But which ones are really worth using? Here’s how business owners are using apps, what they want from them, and which give the most bang for their buck.

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A Comprehensive Handbook on Small Business Human Resources

Article | August 30, 2021

Human resources are a subjective term to each individual and a business entity. Many small firms overlook human resource departments, believing them to be time-consuming, so they do not engage human resource specialists to assist with business operations. Instead, they attempt to manage the tasks either directly or by delegation to current workers. However, human resources benefit both the business and future workers. This blog gives information on small business human resources in detail. According to connecteam, 54% of small firms manage employment and other human resource activities on their own to save money; nevertheless, this type of management presents several challenges and frequently blows up in their faces. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, human resource management professionals will see a 10% increase in employment between 2016 and 2026. HR is crucial in a small business from recruiting and retention through payroll and benefits. The shortcomings in any of these things result in: Penalties for non-compliance Inadequate talent Inefficiencies that cause your manufacturing cycle to slow down Above mentioned points define that you cannot underestimate the importance of HR support for small businesses. Employees are one of a corporate organization's most valuable assets. So, it is needful to protect them. Therefore, human resources requirements for small businesses are essential. Let us Know What Human Resource Management is The Small Business Association (SBA) defines human resources as: "The people who work for a company or organization" "The department of a company that is responsible for managing those resources." Human resource management (HRM) is concerned with your workers, whether they are hired, managed, or require other types of direction and support. Human resource management involve significant duties; some basic human resources requirements for small businesses should be considered and fulfilled. They are those who establish the tone for how employees interact,resolve conflicts, and collaborate. There is a new trend in human resource outsourcing, and some small businesses are deciding to outsource a significant component of their human resources. Responsibilities of Small Business Human Resource Management Recruitment and selection Education and development Compensation and benefits Retention of employees Creating an atmosphere that is safe, healthy, and productive Cross-organizational communication Benefits of a Human Resources Department Ensure a safe and healthy work environment Attract and retain high-caliber individuals Maintain compliance Access Human Resources Anytime, Anywhere Improved Onboarding Access to Employee Benefits at Large Corporations Contribute to Time and Energy Savings Fundamental Component of Human Resources For small businesses, employing dedicated people in meaningful work can enhance performance, loyalty, and retention. Thus, in combination with the human resources manual for small businesses, the human resources department supports them in achieving their goals. This is accomplished, however, by increasing workplace happiness, making judicious use of existing resources, and developing an efficient expenditure model. by boosting workplace satisfaction, judiciously utilizing available resources, and establishing an effective expenditure model. With the clearly defined human resource policies and best practices for small businesses, you can assist workers in their growth and in contributing their expertise and knowledge for the growth of the firm. Whether a small or a large business, the success of a corporation is highly dependent on its ability to manage both internal and external stakeholders successfully. The HR department very well accomplishes this. Below Are Some Human Resources Requirements for Small Businesses. Employee Records Maintaining employee records is an essential aspect of the human resources manual for small businesses. Having it done guarantees that your business complies with labor rules and is protected in the event of a future issue. Regardless of your business's size, it is requisite to gather and maintain these three papers for each employee to protect yourself and your company. I-9 File: The US Government utilizes this form to determine and verify the eligibility of your personnel to work in the United States. Personnel General File: This section covers the paperwork and certificates obtained from workers throughout the employment process. This includes resumes, verification of training, W-4 forms, payroll information, and disciplinary actions. Medical Records of Employees: This file may contain doctor's notes, information on a disability, or information about a medical check-up. The information contained inside is confidential and must be kept secure against unauthorized access. Employees Guidebook Employee's guidebook is a vital aspect of small business human resources element. The handbook includes an idea of expectations, best practices, and requirements. It also includes: The organization's vision, objectives, and values The code of conduct The anti-discrimination rules The safety and security regulations The non-disclosure agreement Work schedules (covering how to monitor time, take leaves, and notify management of leaves) Other general information not required by law Posters That Are Required The nation's or state's laws in which your business operates may require you to publish information at your place of business or in an easily accessible location. Additionally, the Department of Labor (DOL) requires posting certain labor law posters in the workplace. Parting Words While many business owners believe that small business human resources costs are redundant, a human resource department may have a significant influence on your workers' well-being and the success of your firm. Unfortunately, many employees quit their employment due to poor or non-existent human resource management. Frequently asked questions: Does a small business need human resources? Every business, regardless of size, must have a human resources department or at least one person dedicated to HR duties. HR simplifies many duties for business owners, allowing them to focus on other critical elements of operating the firm. In addition, human resources can do a variety of tasks that other employees are unable to. What are the essential human resources requirements for small businesses? Human resources are the bedrock to your organization because it is responsible for hiring skilled workers who appreciate your corporate culture. The most critical human resources requirements for small businesses to succeed are: Employee documentation Required posters Employee handbook Employee development and training Employee benefits Hiring process { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Does a small business need human resources?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Every business, regardless of size, must have a human resources department or at least one person dedicated to HR duties. HR simplifies many duties for business owners, allowing them to focus on other critical elements of operating the firm. In addition, human resources can do a variety of tasks that other employees are unable to." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are the essential human resources requirements for small businesses?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Human resources are the bedrock to your organization because it is responsible for hiring skilled workers who appreciate your corporate culture. The most critical human resources requirements for small businesses to succeed are: Employee documentation Required posters Employee handbook Employee development and training Employee benefits Hiring process" } }] }

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As Small Business Hiring Booms, Distributors Sit on the Sidelines

Article | August 30, 2021

As most industries allocate time, money, and other resources into finding new employees in a labor market where the national unemployment rate is hanging at 3.5% — and substantially lower in some areas — at least one index says that distributors are sitting on the sidelines. According to the CBIZ Small Business Employment Index (SBEI), which tracks hiring trends for U.S. companies with 300 or fewer employees, 2020 kicked off with a seasonally-adjusted increase in hiring of 1.61% for January. “This is a notable improvement over the 1.16% decline in December,” CBIZ SBEI says. “It is also a remarkable number for January, as companies tend to contract their labor forces due to the end of the holiday shopping season.”

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Ways to Protect Your Small Business Against Supply Chain Disruptions

Article | August 30, 2021

COVID-19 had a drastic effect on businesses worldwide. It affected small businesses in various ways, and owners faced unpredictable supply chain disruptions. However, the coronavirus pandemic proved to be a blessing in disguise. The supply chain executives attempted to sustain critical operations during the pandemic. This put their inventiveness, resilience, and adaptability to the test. In addition, the pandemic revealed areas of the supply chain that needed improvement, and it served as an actual test of corporate values and purpose. Supply chain disruptions can impact small businesses in various ways, including increasing expenses, reducing revenue, eroding market share, or causing production challenges. All these factors have the potential to impact a company's bottom line adversely. According to the Institute for Supply Management research, over 75% of the 628 firms questioned reported supply chain delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the same study, 57% of respondents indicated higher wait times for orders with Chinese suppliers. The global supply chain has been a lifeline for the response, ensuring critical medical supplies, food, and other critical commodities reach those who need them the most in time. Challenges Faced by Supply Chain The coronavirus caused a supply chain breakdown, adding a few more obstacles to the already existing ones. Supply chain disruption takes a variety of forms and sizes. Supply chain and operational expenses creep up from several sources and so become prohibitively expensive. In the absence of visibility and accountability for reducing them, operational expenses might rise. Demanding forecasting during the worldwide pandemic added another degree of complexity to the supply chain difficulties of many small businesses. COVID-19 shattered predictions for a variety of merchants and suppliers of consumer goods/services, putting them in the position of choosing how much inventory to hold or create at any moment. Global supply networks are fragile and are collapsing in the face of multi-country disturbances. Talent shortages across the supply chain and operations continue to place a high premium on human labor. A lack of flexibility hampers the inability to meet client expectations for personalization and customization. The resilience strategy was built on outmoded technologies, impairing visibility and decision-making. Risks in the Supply Chain The coronavirus has disturbed businesses and, more importantly, caused supply chain disruptions, altering consumer behavior, supply chains, and routes to markets, knocking businesses off balance. Businesses must move quickly and boldly to create and execute a short-term tactical strategy that will mitigate threats to human health and ensure the continued operation of global supply chains. This may be accomplished with robust data and analytics to comprehend complexity, anticipate possible disturbances, and develop a swift reaction. Methods for mitigating supply chain risks comprise the following: Prepare resources and assembly far in advance to act as a buffer against a brief disruption. Provide incentives to supply chain vendors who ensure operational continuity. Monitor the situation and take the necessary response/contingency steps. Utilize a recovery strategy to re-establish the original supply chain and mitigate the damage swiftly. Impact On Supply Chain The impact of coronavirus supply chain disruptions is severe. Small businesses' supply chains will be crucial in promptly, safely, and securely delivering goods and services. Numerous businesses worldwide rely significantly on manufacturing and supply chains in China, Southeast Asia, and other low-cost countries. However, recent global changes have compelled these businesses to reassess their supply chains, stability, and reliability in the face of an uncertain future. Over 30% of small companies indicated that supply chain interruptions had a material impact on their operations as per the estimates.Another third reported a negligible effect. In addition, over half indicated that the disruptions' effects are worse than three months earlier, while just 6% reported an improvement. The impact of supply chain disruption includes substantial and operational disruptions. These disruptions range from minimizing the impacts of reduced supply to managing disruptions to logistics providers and obstacles to achieving their contractual commitments to consumers. COVID-19 emphasized the critical nature of supply chain resilience to develop more robust long-term operations. As a result, the future repurposed and reshaped supply chains will have to include resilience and adaptation into their calculations. COVID-19 is causing supply chain interruptions in 94% of Fortune 1000 firms. 75% of firms have had a negative or significantly unfavorable impact on their operations. 55% of businesses want to reduce their growth forecasts (or have already done so). Here Are A Few Ways to Mitigate Supply Chain Disruptions For Your Small Business Locate Backup Suppliers and Vendors Identifying backup suppliers and securing them is critical for resolving supply chain problems on time; backup suppliers are the glue that holds a robust supply chain together. Unfortunately, numerous small enterprises rely on a single source for raw materials, resulting in the demise of many small firms. Manufacturers may safeguard themselves against supply shortages by arranging for backup sources in advance. To mitigate potential risks, manufacturers should consider selecting backup suppliers from various geographical regions. This will ensure that local material shortages and disasters have a minimal impact on order fulfillment. Still, it will also aid in developing a relationship with them to step in when needed. Finally, consider asking suppliers to carry business continuity insurance, equipment failure coverage, and other types of insurance to help decrease the probability of order fulfillment being halted. Incorporate Supply Chain Risk Management (SCRM) A supply chain breakdown may be a rude awakening for any small businesses that are operating normally. Supply chain management encompasses not just raw material sourcing but also the end-to-end flow of products and services and the planning and administration of operations related to sourcing, procurement, conversion, and logistics management tasks. Utilize cutting-edge technologies to assess possible supply chain risks. For example, consider adopting AI-powered mapping and environmental analysis solutions and aggregation applications that give global overviews and cyber threat assessment systems. Tools for supply chain risk management exist to assist you in tracking and controlling your supply chain. These tools may significantly improve the efficiency of order intake, shipping, ordering supplies, and inventory management. In addition, as supply chains grow more cloud-based or automated, it becomes increasingly important to use software to monitor your supply chain risk management program. Customers Should Be Informed For many small businesses, supply chain disruptions are unavoidable, and they will impact the products and services you expect to deliver. However, in this situation, it is critical to have clear communication with consumers. Keeping in touch with your consumers is essential for protecting your brand and the relationships you've worked so hard to build. Transparency with customers is critical when dealing with supply chain disruptions. Before customers make an order, be open about the reasons for the delay and potential difficulties, and communicate with them proactively about what is happening with your business and how you react. Never, ever leave your consumers in the dark. Bottom Line The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted almost everyone in every country on Earth. However, not all breakdowns are internationally recognized, and supply chain disruptions are unavoidable. However, by carefully preparing your reaction, assessing possible supply chain risks, and identifying backup suppliers and vendors, you can help prepare for even the most extraordinary circumstances. Frequently Asked Questions: What is supply chain disruption? A supply chain disruption occurs when the manufacturing process of items and their distribution to clients are disrupted. Disruption brings everything to a grinding halt - the traditional spanner in the works. A supply chain disruption occurs when a sudden shift or crisis — whether local or global — has a detrimental effect on that process. What are some of the causes of supply chain disruption? Here are some of the causes of supply chain disruption: Natural disasters, Transportation failures and delays, Political, economic, climate, or cyber threats, Pandemics, Product problems, and Price fluctuations. How to handle a supply chain disruption? You can handle a supply chain disruption by: Diversifying supply base, Identifying backup suppliers and vendors, Creating a supply chain emergency plan, Communicating with your customers, Incorporating supply chain risk management (SCRM) and by Adopting risk evaluation tools. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is supply chain disruption?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "A supply chain disruption occurs when the manufacturing process of items and their distribution to clients are disrupted. Disruption brings everything to a grinding halt - the traditional spanner in the works. A supply chain disruption occurs when a sudden shift or crisis — whether local or global — has a detrimental effect on that process." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are some of the causes of supply chain disruption?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Here are some of the causes of supply chain disruption: Natural disasters, Transportation failures and delays, Political, economic, climate, or cyber threats, Pandemics, Product problems, and Price fluctuations." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How to handle a supply chain disruption?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "You can handle a supply chain disruption by: Diversifying supply base, Identifying backup suppliers and vendors, Creating a supply chain emergency plan, Communicating with your customers, Incorporating supply chain risk management (SCRM) and by Adopting risk evaluation tools." } }] }

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Compelling Benefits of Video Marketing for Small Businesses

Article | August 30, 2021

Video marketing has existed for an extended period of time. It is, nevertheless, a relatively recent development in the commercial sector, particularly for small businesses. The blog discusses the benefits of video marketing for small businesses in-depth. “Stop thinking of ‘video marketing’ as this separate entity that is optional for your business. Video is an effective form of communication that needs to be integrated into each and every aspect of your existing marketing efforts.” –James Wedmore. Video advertising is the fastest increasing kind of advertising. Despite this, small business owners remain wary of video marketing as a marketing strategy. Yet, small business video marketing is one of the most successful marketing strategies in today's fast-paced digital environment. According to Hubspot, 85% of firms, utilize video as a marketing strategy. But the ball doesn’t stop there. Your users prefer videos when compared to other forms of content. Explain Ninja, a leading video content creator says that YouTube presently has a mind-boggling 2+ billion users. It is equivalent to nearly 13% of the internet. The benefits of video marketing are that it helps to enhance customer acquisition, conversion, CTR, ranking, and sales. If small company owners learn to exploit the benefits of video marketing, they will significantly increase their chances of success in the internet trends. Additionally, the advantages of video marketing may vary according on the sort of video marketing used. Let us take a short look at the various types of video marketing. Brand videos Demonstrations and showcases Event videos Trailers and teasers Success stories and testimonials Webinar videos Instruction Videos Question and answer Videos Company Culture Videos Let Us Peep into Some Benefits of Video Marketing for Small Businesses Increase Brand Awareness and Better Online Presence Because videos are more entertaining and quickly attract viewers, their reach to an audience is increased. Effective video marketing may also help you boost your internet visibility. In fact, one of the primary benefits of video marketing for small businesses since it establishes a robust online presence. Videos are posted on a variety of social media platforms. Optinmonster reports that video marketers boost brand awareness by 54%. Generating Leads and Increases Visitors Campaign Monitor reports that around 54% of customers want to see more video content from companies they support. Video marketing may assist businesses in generating new leads and keeping their sales funnels filled. YouTube has become increasingly crucial for businesses' marketing efforts. According to Lemonlight statistics, video-assisted 84% of marketers in generating leads. Video marketing enables audiences to consume content in bite-sized chunks that address their problem areas. Builds Trust In comparison to other forms of marketing, videos enable you to engage with your audience on a more personal level and establish an emotional relationship, which contributes significantly to the development of trust. Creating videos for small businesses is one of the most effective methods to get recognition and earn your consumers' confidence. Hubspot research confirms that 84% of buyers purchase after seeing an explanation video.. Increases Sales and Conversions Another essential benefits of video marketing for small businesses is increasing sales and boosting conversions.When customers are convinced, having a video about your product or service on social media increases engagement and purchases. According to a Cisco study, online videos will account for more than 82% of all consumer internet traffic by 2022, 15 times the amount in 2017. In accordance with the Vidyard research, marketers reported a 34% boost in conversion rate when they used videos as part of their campaign Increased revenue and conversion rates are two of the ultimate advantages of video marketing. As a result, video marketing is in great demand in the realm of digital marketing due to its success. According to EyeWideDigital, using video on your landing page may boost your conversion rate by up to 80%. Increases Engagement on Social Media Connecting with your prospective customer is very important. Therefore, engagement plays a vital role in the digital world. Videos promote social media engagement; thus, video marketing for small businesses is of utmost importance. Videos posted on social media platforms garner a more significant amount of attention. Along with more engagement, videos have a longer lifespan in the ecosystem due to the increased interactions and sharing. According to Explain Ninja, over 93% of companies report gaining new consumers from videos shared on their social media pages. Social media is a video-centric platform. As a result, there are several benefits of video marketing on social media. Improves SEO Ranking With videos on your website, you can boost visitors and keep them engaged, improving your page views. Also, improving your page views will result in improving your SEO ranking too. This is because longer visitors stay on your site, the better the degree of trust with search engines and hence the higher the rank. If you embed your video on YouTube and your website, you will enhance your chances of appearing in search results. According to Alexa, YouTube is the world's second most popular website (after Google). If you advertise your videos on social media, you increase your chances of being discovered. One of the significant benefits of video marketing for small businesses is an increase in SEO ranking. Final Thoughts With the numerous benefits of video marketing, small company owners should prioritize video marketing above more traditional forms of promotion. Adopting video marketing for small businesses is a fantastic approach to increase brand recognition and conversions. Lastly, the marketing team may save time and resources by editing old video creative with relevant messages about fresh offers. Video marketing is a powerful performance driver for any sized business. FAQs: Why is video marketing important for small businesses? Video marketing help in understanding the product or service, increases engagement on digital and social platforms. It helps in brand awareness and reaches a larger audience quickly. Most importantly it builds a long-lasting relation with the customers and ultimately improves sales. What are the advantages of video marketing? Here few listed advantages of video marketing: Increase brand awareness and better online presence Generating leads and increases visitors Builds trust Increases sales and conversions Increases engagement on social media Improves SEO ranking { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Why is video marketing important for small businesses?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Video marketing help in understanding the product or service, increases engagement on digital and social platforms. It helps in brand awareness and reaches a larger audience quickly. Most importantly it builds a long-lasting relation with the customers and ultimately improves sales." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What are the advantages of video marketing?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Here few listed advantages of video marketing: Increase brand awareness and better online presence Generating leads and increases visitors Builds trust Increases sales and conversions Increases engagement on social media Improves SEO ranking" } }] }

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Spotlight

LiveIntent, Inc.

LiveIntent is a company built on people. Our culture centers on the people that work here, and our platform centers on the people we help marketers reach.

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