Sep 18 2013

Workers’ Comp Agency Recommends 4.4% Rate Increase

Published by under Business

workers comp
The agency that helps set workers’ comp rates is recommending they increase 4.4% at the start of next year. The Workers’ Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau in early August recommended that the average benchmark pure premium rates for all of the state’s class codes in-crease to $2.62 per $100 of payroll for policies incepting on or after Jan. 1, 2014.

A good portion of the rate increase is due to increased claims filings, as well as rises in medical costs and permanent disability benefits that partly took effect this year and take full effect in 2014.

This year, benefit increases added an-other $620 million in system costs, the Rating Bureau has estimated. In 2014, the increases will add another $590 million in costs for all workers’ comp payers in the state.

That said, cost increases are expected to be offset by savings from reforms contained in SB 863, which was signed into law in 2012 and took effect at the start of this year. Continue Reading »

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Jul 20 2012

10 Things You Should Do When Opening A New Business

Published by under Business

Article by Chris Davodi of 1 Stop Service Business Resources.

Grand Opening, Opening a new business tips

Amongst the million businesses that open up every year, some make it past their first year and churn profits while others fail in not being able to generate a profit. Perhaps it might be things that are out of your control like the state of the market or even the economy, in general.

While there is a possibility that you might not succeed due to these factors, you can probably increase your chances by making a checklist of tasks that you should complete when you open a new business.

Here are some vital tasks that can help you succeed, or help you survive when things get rough:

#1: In determining whether the business will suit your life’s goals or not, you can proceed to create a business and marketing plan while also using the break-even analysis to determine whether or not the business will succeed before jumping headlong.

#2: Finding a legal structure for your business is paramount, and this means understanding which ownership structure will suit your business, and perhaps, a lawyer will be able to help you streamline your efforts.

#3: Get a good name for your business and make sure you have the paperwork in place.

#4: It is important to find an appropriate business location so that it will stand more chances for success in its first year.

#5: Obtaining Insurance, filing for permits and licenses while also setting tax reporting and accounting are also important tasks.


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May 12 2015

Can Location Data Help Marketers Beat Brand Loyalty?

Published by under Advertising

Just how powerful is brand loyalty? Is it powerful enough to overcome the immediate satisfaction of a consumer getting what he or she wants? Those questions should be central to any discussions regarding geo-location. The technology is evolving and becoming more precise, enabling marketers to approach new prospects from different angles.

Read on for an interesting use case, and several thoughts on how geo-location can change your campaigns.

The Garcetti Campaign

Politics are the one place you might think brand loyalty trumps all else. People are still sporting Obama stickers on their cars, and were supporting Bush stickers even before that. It’s like football, once a fan always a fan.

What Eric Garcetti found was that matching offline voter data to online placements could turn non-voters into potential voters, a kind of mobilization effort.. The newly elected Mayor of Los Angeles won his election thanks in part to voter profiles his team helped assembled based on voter data they had on hand. They were able to use that data, along with location data, to reach a new segment of voter and secure the win.

Thoughts and Conclusions

The Garcetti case presents some interesting ideas on location data. Location does play a role in how we think; someone in an upper class neighborhood will likely have different priorities from those in a lower class one. However, the Garcetti campaign still utilized messaging to drive users to action. It also had to be sustained to be effective, so there was an element of branding too. Immediacy can’t overcome loyalty in every case, but knowing what people want and where they are helps you tailor messaging that drives them to action.

Bio: Ted Dhanik is the CEO of engage:BDR, a digital advertising company. Ted Dhanik is an expert on buy-side platforms and targeted traffic. Ted Dhanik is also an active startup mentor and blogger.

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May 10 2015

Give Your Business Winning Doors

Published by under Home Improvement

Written By ETO Doors

Do you run your own business? Does it have a physical presence like an office or store? If so, you probably take care to ensure that every aspect of it positively represents your company. No doubt you’ve spent countless hours thinking about every single aspect. However, there’s a good chance that you haven’t fully considered every last feature. For example, how does your door look?ETO6

That may sound odd, but think about it. You want to always make a good first impression, right? You want customers to think positively about your business before they even step foot into your store, don’t you?

What better way to do this then with great doors? It might seem simple, but that’s kind of the point. Yes, it’s simple, but it stands out. It shows you go the extra mile. It shows people you take their business seriously.

For example, Knotty Alder doors are truly impressive. They’re not the most expensive, but they look good and you can tell they’re high quality. Think about the impression they make on customers. Knotty Alder interior doors are also beautiful and will help extend the impression you leave.

With so many options out there, you can do all kinds of great things in order to get the best possible look for your company: one that impresses and reflects on your business.


Looking for doors for your home? Whether you need solid wood interior doors or something far more extravagant, you’ll find everything you need at ETO Doors and so much more.

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May 05 2015

Louis Mayer: Hollywood’s Real Life Vito Corleon

Published by under Business

By Phin Upham

Try to imagine a real life Vito Corleon stalking the back lots of Hollywood. That’s how one might describe Louis Mayer. Astute movie fans might notice that Mayer’s name is one part of MGM, formed in 1924. Mayer had a taste for the elaborate, and his productions were decadent and costly. Yet his studio produced some classic films we have grown to know and love over the years, including Ben Hur and Grand Hotel. MGMs films were top notch in the golden age of Hollywood thanks in no small part to Mayer’s vision.

Mayer bought his way in to film, you could say, by purchasing the rights to distribute The Birth of a Nation. A recognized film today, but a sensation in 1914.Mayer pawned his wife’s wedding ring to get the money he needed to buy the film. Once the deal was inked, he began a distribution agency in Boston that soon expanded into a New York talent agency. But Mayer knew he could only get so far outside of Hollywood, and so he made the move just four years after that first risky venture. He formed the Louis B. Mayer Pictures Corporation when he arrived.

Mayer was known as an aggressive producer. He spent a lot of time hunting off the lot for talent and staged elaborate productions. He was very much hands-on with his operation and grew it fairly successfully. Enough to attract the attention of Marcus Loew and Samuel Goldwyn. The trio merged and formed MGM, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, a Hollywood behemoth at its height.

About the Author: Phin Upham is an investor at a family office/ hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Phin Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media and Telecom group. You may contact Phin on his Phin Upham website or Facebook page.

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Apr 15 2015

Recognizing a Secure Ecommerce

Published by under Business Services

Written by Secure Net Shop

Online stores have gained much attention by consumers and merchants. The idea of being able to buy anything within a few clicks has an undeniable appeal. However, buyers do expect their experience to be hassle free and secure. This is an aspect that serious merchants take very dearly.

With the amount of websites out there, how does one determine which is secure and which is not. If being sensible about putting one’s credit card anywhere online is a good reflex, there are some other, easier to follow rules about security.

Most of the time, shopping cart ecommerce websites use very advanced encryption algorithms to encode and send the customers’ information to the shop’s database. Credit card numbers are thus completely encrypted and cannot be read by the naked eye, even by the personnel working on the website. Naturally, this makes it almost impossible to have any loss of crucial information.

Buyers should be very wary of a few things that pertain to a site’s security. To start, it must be made sure that the website URL starts with “https://”. The address bar of the browser will contain that information. Some sites only display “http://” (note the lack of the “s”), adding the “s” only when an order is to be made. Other sites show the secure URL on all pages, at all times. Another icon of security is the padlock sign, present on the browser’s address bar. An open padlock means the website is not secure, a closed one means it is.

SecureNetShop offers secured ecommerce shopping cart software solutions for ideal for businesses seeking to set up an internet shopping cart.

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Apr 11 2015

Benefits of Exterior Wood Doors

Published by under Home Improvement

Written by ETO Doors

Exterior wood doors look good in just about any office or commercial setting. However, these doors offer much more than just aesthetics. The advantages of using solid wood doors are listed below.

Durability and maintenance

Wooden front doors offer incredible durability and do not require much maintenance. Even though these doors tend to be relatively more expensive, the cost is easily recovered due to the durability that they procure and low maintenance. The doors would only require a fresh coating of varnish twice a year and some polishing once a week in order to look glossy and fresh. These doors effectively resist the weather elements such as the rain, wind and snow.

Energy Efficiency

Exterior wood doors, especially when they are properly framed, offer great insulation inside the house. This enables to cut down costs on either heating or cooling. Solid wood doors also provide insulation against the dispersion of sound. This makes it ideal for office settings such as in dental cabinets, legal offices or any office requiring confidentiality.

Cost Effective

Due to the low maintenance and durability of wooden doors, they require less expenses when it comes to maintaining them. These doors last long and therefore would not need to be changed and replaced often, representing significant savings. The energy efficiency of these doors also represent savings in utility bills. They effectively help to lower energy costs and to decrease expenditure in noise insulation.

ETO Doors offers a large selection of wood doors ideal for office environments and commercial settings.

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Apr 09 2015

How to Make a Strong Value Proposition

Published by under Business

A strong value proposition is the reason why someone will click on your page to read more. Writing a strong proposition isn’t easy, mostly because it’s very easy to mistake a value proposition with so many other hooks. It’s not a slogan, it doesn’t help to position your brand. It makes a clear statement about what you offer and how the customer can benefit. It’s one of the most powerful tools you have at your disposal, especially if it becomes one of the first things a customer sees. Here are some tips to write a strong value proposition.

Stop Writing for Bots

The first thing you need to know about a strong value proposition is that it has to appeal to humans who can make decisions. That means it’s best to write something clear, concise and full of benefits. You’re not aiming for a statement full of buzzwords, unless that’s what your market will respond to. So it has to use language your audience can relate to. This is also not something that just comes to you inside your office; it’s something you have to see for yourself. Check social media and blog comment sections to see how your audience is talking about your market, and the products you sell.

The Anatomy of a Value Proposition

A good value proposition has a few key components, the first being the headline. The headline should be no more than one sentence, and it should be the punchiest sentence on the page. Below it is your sub-headline. You see these frequently italicized or in a smaller font, and their job is following up with whatever your headline didn’t say. Sub headers are frequently longer than headlines, so use two or three lines and give yourself room to expand on who you are and what you do.

Bullet points are another component frequently utilized, especially in long-form landing pages. They help to sum up the key benefits while a background visual adds depth.

Final Tips

Now that you understand how to build a value proposition, the final step is to write one with clarity. Your statement should be easy to understand, like an elevator pitch. It shouldn’t focus on where you stand in comparison to others and it doesn’t help establish your brand’s authority.

It’s a sales pitch distilled into something that can be read and understood within 5 seconds. If you need to explain it, you’ve already failed. With time and practice, you’ll write incredible value propositions, but everyone starts somewhere.

Bio: Ted Dhanik is the CEO of engage:BDR, a Los Angeles based digital advertising company. Ted Dhanik understands direct marketing, and has worked with digital advertising since the early 2000s. For more information on Ted Dhanik, check out the website for engage:BDR.

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Mar 27 2015

One of the Greatest Adventure Tales of All Time

Published by under Business

By Phineas Upham

Alexander Henry the Elder, quite the name, was a merchant during the early part of the 19th century. He prospered from international trade during a time when globalization was not even a word in the English dialect. He got his start supplying the British army with armaments, but made his true wealth from his vast fur trading empire. In the process, Henry travelled to Canada and lived one of the greatest adventure stories ever told.

In 1761, Alexander was approached by John Baptiste Ludec. He was an investor who advised Henry to expand his fur trade beyond Lake Huron and into Canadian territory.

Almost the moment he set foot inside the Canadian border, he was attacked by the Ojibwe tribes who were native to those lands. They were supporters of the French forces, but that would not deter Alexander Henry from his mission of expansion. He not only won over the Ojibwe tribes, he turned them into lucrative business partners with his silver tongue.

The natives called him “a middle-sized man, easy yet dignified,” and he was well-liked even by those who claimed to be his enemies. It’s likely that Alexander was just a cool guy to be around. He held frequent social gatherings, entertaining merchants and locals alike, and it’s said that he had frequent visitors to his home.

Henry married a native woman, which was a kind of loose tradition among fur traders, and had several children by her. He died in 1824, but not before seeing his son rise to become director of the Commercial Bank of the Midland District at Cobourg.

Phineas Upham is an investor from NYC and SF. You may contact Phin on his Phineas Upham website or Facebook page.

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Mar 17 2015

Cost-Effective Shipping Tips

Whether for personal or business reasons, it’s easy to overspend when shipping packages. Because there are so many methods of shipment now, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and end up choosing the most convenient option as opposed to the most affordable. By taking the time to consider packaging products, deadlines, and shipping company costs, you can make the most cost-effective decision for your shipping needs.

First, timeliness is very important. If there are deadlines to be met, make sure you send your products in plenty of time for them to arrive on the dictated dates. Fees can add up significantly when you have to pay for expedited shipping and surpass the standard delivery time. One way to avoid a delay is to keep a full stock of all your packaging needs. Having plenty of supplies on hand like boxes, tape, and protective products such as polyurethane foam sheets will keep the packaging process running smoothly.

Another idea to help see your package delivered on time is to keep track of shipping companies’ timelines. For example, if you have a record of each company’s delivery option expectations and respective costs, you can quickly weigh price versus time efficiency in a tight situation.

Whether you’re sending a single package, many identical packages, or various size boxes, comparing prices for different shipping companies is beneficial. It’s important to be aware that both weight and size affect the cost of a shipment. You may be able to save money by sending more products at once in a larger shipment as opposed to sending numerous smaller packages. Shipping companies can help you decipher which is the most cost-effective option for you.

Another way to ensure you’re not overpaying is to invest in a postage meter. These machines weigh packages, provide exact postage charges, and print shipping labels. By purchasing a postage meter, you remove the issue of ever needing to guess postage amounts. Accidentally choosing inadequate postage can risk a delay in shipment, and therefore bring about extra charges.

Finally, choosing the right packaging ensures your products arrive safely. When a package is ruined in transit, money is wasted on the broken product and all shipping fees and postage must be paid to re-send the same package. Protective products like high density foam sheets provide a layer of shielding against hostile shipping conditions. Because replacing damaged goods can become expensive very quickly, putting money toward defensive materials will save money in the long run. Using these quality shipping materials in addition to keeping track of deadlines and comparing costs will help you choose the most cost-efficient shipping.
Carlo Badalamenti offers tips on industrial packaging, soundproofing and other uses for foam sheets. To order high-density foam sheets, visit Foam Factory, Inc.

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Mar 10 2015

Reaping Business Benefits Through Employee Time Tracking

Published by under Business Services,Technology

Written by Allied Time

Tracking the time and attendance of employees is an important aspect in managing human capital. The system in place would be able to offer a fast and noticeable return on investments from savings in time and cost. An effective time and attendance tracking system is able to help streamline payroll processes, simplify tasks assignments and manage vacations and absences.

More Efficient and Accurate Payroll Preparation

A time-tracking system allows considerable time gain when it comes to payroll preparation since the process is automated. Thus the time collection process, payroll policies and calculations of overtimes are instantly done and sent to the responsible payroll office for checking.

Easier Tracking of Paid Time Off

Along with tracking additional hours worked overtime, some systems also allow companies to calculate the number of paid time off that an employee is entitled to based on company policies. Employees are also able to view their sick leave and other vacations entitlements through an online portal. Time offs can also be requested directly through some systems.

More Effective Human Resource Management

Effective time machine solutions provide valuable tools and reports that can aid in the calculation of HR costs in order to make better decisions. Some ad-hoc reports are also possible through some of these systems.

Workforce Tracking on The Go

An accurate payroll tracking would start right from the moment that the employee clocks in. In order to cater for diverse work locations, many clocking systems provide features such as touch screens, biometric face recognition and even time clock online services.

Allied Time provide time tracking solutions for businesses. Their time clock systems are innovative and have features such as biometric recognition.

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Mar 10 2015

Shopping Cart Solutions for Businesses

Published by under Business Services

Written by SecureNetShop

The choice for a shopping cart solution for an ecommerce site is not a trivial one. Most system providers propose clients with a variety of different features in addition to the basic services. Before going for a service, an important consideration is whether the additional features would be truly beneficial to your business. A user-friendly system is generally at the top of the priority list of most businesses since they aim to improve the customer experience.

Website Builder

Ideally, an ecommerce shopping cart service should come along with a website builder feature to help you in creating a site. This service can also be helpful in improving and designing your site to make it more user friendly and professional. The website would also need to reflect your brand image. Customers would identify your brand based on the impression that they have on your website. Factors that might turn them off are broken designs or typos. Choosing a provider who is experienced in building such user-friendly and professional sites is advisable.

Payment Solutions

The last and most crucial step in the online shopping pipeline is the payment. This critical phase requires utmost security. In order to complete the checkout process successfully, the customer would also need to be able to choose a preferred means of payment. Thus, a provider offering multiple payment solutions would be beneficial.

SecureNetShop provides user-friendly ecommerce cart software solutions for the setting up of online shops. They provide quality and inexpensive shopping cart ecommerce software ideal for companies seeking cost-effective services.

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