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    Invoicing in a successful computer consultancy

     

    Invoicing is an administrative task that requires attention to detail. You have to attend carefully to your invoicing on a regular basis. If you don't you will lose money that is easily avoidable. Follow these simple invoicing procedures for maximum efficiency: Invoicing Procedures If you are invoicing for a previous week's invoice and a current week's invoice, include a statement of account. This puts their overdue balance right in front of them. When invoicing, if you are sending an overdue notice stamp it “Past Due.” People really don't like seeing those things; it makes them nervous. After a week overdue, make a phone call. They will usually give you an apology and an excuse, and then get the check out right away. With a steady client when you call, you don't even have to ask, they know why you are calling. When it comes to invoicing, include a specific due date. Don't simply say due in 30 days. All your invoicing should include your payment terms and late fees. Reiterate your late payment fees at the bottom. Something like payments received x amount of days late, subject to late feature of x amount. Whether or not you enforce this is another story, but it can be an extremely powerful deterrent. Another big thing with invoicing is to send your invoices out even if your client is having financial difficulty. You can't afford to be their bank. A good, steady client will pay you first. If you don't have a thick enough skin, hire someone who does. The Bottom Line on Invoicing Invoicing is an important task that needs to be managed carefully. Invoicing is how you get paid and you don't want to let lax policies and procedures hinder your financial viability. Customers will appreciate clear invoicing terms and practices and you will benefit from regular and complete payments. Copyright MMI-MMVI, Computer Consultants Secrets. All Worldwide Rights Reserved. {Attention Publishers: Live hyperlink in author resource box required for copyright compliance}

         
    Is an independent advisor right for you

     

    Are you overwhelmed by retirement planning? If so, you're not alone. The process of managing personal finances is both time-consuming and complex. According to the 2005 Employee Benefit Research Institute's "Retirement Confidence Survey," 55 percent of workers said they were behind schedule in retirement savings. With so many different companies offering a range of products and services, it's hard to know where to turn for financial advice. An increasingly popular choice for investors seeking financial advice is to work with an independent advisor. Choosing an independent advisor in your community can give you access to comprehensive and sophisticated financial planning expertise, combined with a personal relationship and individual attention. Before making the decision, it is important to understand what specific services independent advisors offer and how they can help you achieve your goals. Independent advisors typically provide a range of financial services that focus on advice, planning and managing of individual portfolios. They work with financial institutions like Schwab Institutional, a division of Charles Schwab & Co. Inc., to house their clients' assets and execute transactions, such as trading stocks and bonds or selecting mutual funds. They usually serve investors who prefer a highly personal approach, want to be included in setting goals and strategy and are comfortable delegating the day-to-day execution of that strategy. Independent advisors are generally fee-based, which means that their fee is a set percentage of the assets that they are managing for you. This system aligns the advisor's compensation directly with your success. Purely commission-based brokers at local branches of big, national firms, on the other hand, are paid a commission on the products they offer and may be limited to selling their firm's proprietary products. To help you decide if an independent advisor is the most appropriate financial professional for you, consider the following questions: * Is your portfolio becoming too complex or time-consuming to manage on your own? * Is your portfolio no longer meeting your goals and objectives? * Do you want a disciplined investment plan that is tailored to your individual goals? * Do you want to participate in regular meetings with your advisor and delegate most of the day-to-day decisions?

         
    Is drug screening too costly to do or do without one company has the answer

     

    The director of telemarketing operations at a financial services company looks out across his 3600 square foot call center on a typical Monday morning. “Look at all those empty chairs”, he laments. “It is sickly Monday and my partiers are taking their usual unscheduled day long break”. The problem of the “three day weekend” or absenteeism in general doesn’t just affect the manager in this setting. What about the other 80% of the work force who showed up? They are now burdened with additional duties while filling the vacancies that have temporarily developed. With the challenge of recruiting qualified workers becoming more difficult all over the nation, the last thing American businesses can afford is to have major portions of its existing work force abusing drugs – on or off the job. The truth is that most employees do not engage in illicit drug use and most do not want to work side-by-side with drug abusers. A majority of employees are parents who are concerned about the effects of drug abuse on their children, now and in the future. Given this profile of the typical American workers, it is clear that substance-abuse prevention can and should be viewed as a common concern of both employers and employees. We interviewed one company that has recognized the true damage that drugs in the workplace causes and why it is still prevalent. Labwire, Inc. ( labwire), a Houston, Texas based developer of online security solutions, began addressing what many medium and large size companies have consistently failed to address—the true cost effectiveness of their testing programs. “What stops companies from being effective about drug prevention in the workplace is the apparent cost to do so”, states Dexter Morris, President of the company. “What most companies don’t understand is the wasted cost of NOT using the latest in technology management in handling such issues,” he added. Drug use in the workplace costs this country billions of dollars every year in lost productivity, increased health problems and workplace accidents, to say nothing of the problems it causes us at the federal and state level with associated family problems. Contrary to the typical portrayal of drug abusers, many apparently functional drug and alcohol abusers manage to hold down full or part-time jobs, masking their destructive problem from their employers. In fact, over seventy four percent of all current illegal drug and heavy alcohol * users hold down some type of job. *(Those drinking five or more drinks per occasion on five or more days in the 30 days preceding the survey). According to the U. S. Department of Labor, more than 8 million Americans use some type of illegal substance. The overall cost of illicit drug abuse is estimated to have been $160.7 billion in 2000, and 69 percent of these costs are from productivity losses due to drug-related illnesses and deaths. Reducing substance abuse positively impacts America’s economic landscape. Medium businesses bear the greatest burden of substance abusers. Traditionally, larger employers participate in drug-free workplace practices. As a result, medium to large employers who do not have drug free workplace policies in place are – in essence – adversely selected against in terms of the employees that are left to hire. Another thing to note is that substance abusers will steer away from drug-free workplace companies. They will work for those businesses that don’t have a policy or a program and where there is no drug testing involved. Let’s face it, no abuser wants to be detected. “The fact that medium and large size companies are at greatest risk is why we developed our web-based employee screening process. Any company can deploy this system inside of 30 days”, says Morris confidently. “In fact, we can train up to 100 human resource people on how to use our system in only 60 minutes online”. Morris went on to say that just the cost of workers compensation claims can bury a company. Drug-using employees are 3.6 times more likely to be involved in workplace accidents and five times more likely to file a workers’ compensation claim. Between thirty eight and fifty percent of all workers’ compensation claims are related to substance abuse per the National Council on Compensation Insurance.. Substance abusers are three times more likely to use medical benefits than other employees. According to Edward Poole, president and COO of OHS Health and Safety Services Inc., in Costa Mesa, Calif., several government and private industry studies concluded that each drug user in the workplace "can cost an employer an average of $11,000-$13,000 annually." Despite studies and surveys that indicate a significant number of substance abusers hold jobs and work while under the influence, Poole points out that many employers have an "it can't happen here" attitude about substance abuse in the workplace. "Once they get in there and implement a policy and start testing employees, they're usually very surprised by the results," he says. Poole tells the story of one client who operated a small, local delivery service. When a representative from OHS Health and Safety Services visited the business owner, he stated repeatedly that there was no reason to conduct drug testing in that workplace. After all, the company had only 63 employees. After a couple of years of rebuffing them, the delivery service owner called OHS to start up an immediate screening program. Apparently the company had a change of heart after observing unusual behavior in their workforce. OHS showed up unannounced one day after performing roughly 45 days of drug free workplace education, and did what's called a "sweep." They were going to test every employee in the workplace. Nine people immediately walked off the job. Says Poole, "One or two probably had deeply rooted beliefs in the right to privacy and all that crap, but it is probably safe to say that most of those nine employees would have tested positive." Out of the 54 who took the drug test, 19 tested positive for marijuana and several tested positive for cocaine as well. "The employer was shocked," says Poole, “Most employers have no clue how many employees are working under the influence." Once a company decides to confront its potential workplace issue regarding illicit drug use the problem of finding the appropriate security company crops up. “There are a lot of companies professing to have the expertise to address drug screening issues”, Morris cautions. “Just find out what their track record is and talk to some of their clients”. Many companies are heading the warnings about drug abuse in the workplace. According to data on companies that test employees, drug testing increased from twenty one and a half percent to almost eighty five percent in one six year period - a two hundred and fifty percent increase. Recent evidence suggests that drug testing has now leveled off and in fact has decreased slightly, but primarily among medium businesses. National studies indicate that sixty six percent of the country's largest firms engage in some type of drug testing. Among Fortune 500 companies, during the late 1980s and early 1990s, drug testing likewise increased in use. For example, in 1985 about eighteen percent of Fortune 500 companies tested their employees. The number increased to a high point of forty percent by 1991. Among Fortune 1000 firms, forty eight percent of employees are subject to drug testing. “These are good trends overall”, says Morris when asked about the increase in drug screening across the US. The weakness in screening program administrations (drug testing and background screens) by medium and large size businesses is the increasing focus of Labwire’s business model. “We know what the solution is for tens of thousands of companies, and we are it”, concludes Morris. With companies like Labwire, who are building affordable applications, coming onto the scene, maybe your call center manager will have better attendance on future Monday mornings. Laura Betterly Press Direct International

         
    Is excel running your business a transition to project management software is worth the investment

     

    : Businesses small and large have been using MS Excel for years to run processes and manage projects. For small, simple projects Excel is a useful organizational tool. However, projects have a tendency to grow in complexity at a rate that Excel can not keep up with. Imagine that a business needs to track projects or processes and does not have the time or budget to put a sophisticated tracking system in place. An IT department does not exist or is busy handling other affairs. Excel often seems to be the obvious, quickest and easiest resource to get things started. Skip ahead a few months or a year later and those same Excel spreadsheets have now become a burden to the company. Many different versions are being passed around. No one knows who has the most up-to-date files saved on their computer. The project has evolved, making the spreadsheets so complex that only one person understands how to update them or even interpret them, in some cases. It is now nearly impossible to generate reports from the spreadsheets or track progress and historical data. The data is also not searchable since Excel does not function as a database. The list goes on and on with all the limitations. It is very understandable why business professionals turn to Excel to run critical processes: most already own a license on their desktop and are familiar with enough to quickly get the project started. They can even bypass IT altogether and maintain the Excel files themselves. The problem is Excel was never intended to be used as project management tool. It is no surprise that collaborating via spreadsheets becomes unbearable rather quickly as projects and processes grow in complexity. Project Management software solutions such as Interneer Intellect provide business professionals with the same benefits they seek with Excel - ease of use, quick setup, ease of maintenance without IT - all with the full benefits and robustness of a database system, that is collaborative, web-based, multi-user and enterprise level. These systems even incorporated many other features that make it easier for the business users to manage documents, projects and process workflows. Excel is best for what it was designed to do - accounting and financial calculations. Stop running your businesses on a thread and read white papers and view demos of project management software system.

    Web-based systems like Interneer Intellect allow for real-time collaboration between team members anywhere. The time saved using project management software will provide ROI.

         
    Is it time to start a perm practice

     

    : The national unemployment rate is dropping. Your temp staffing operation is starting to take off. You often hear that the direct hire business is on the move. What should you do? Consider starting a perm placement division. Here are some compelling reasons to do so and some helpful tips to start you on your way. Why now? The time is right. With unemployment dropping and the demand for qualified workers outstripping supply, it’s the best time to do this. Many of your existing clients will likely be interested in this service. You can make a lot of money in a short amount of time. The industry standard fee (depending on your industry) is any where from 15 to 30 percent of the first year’s salary. This means a $50,000 placement could translate into $7,500 to $15,000 in new revenue, and that’s a lot of billable hours. You have relationships in place that can be instantly leveraged. You already have relationships with a lot of hiring managers. Even if these people don’t handle the direct hiring for their companies they’re in a good position to connect you with the right person. And, if you’ve done a good job for them, the introduction may come with a recommendation. You’re also already an expert at recruiting, matching, negotiating, etc., so use these skills for additional profits. You also have relationships with a lot of the people who will become direct hire candidates for another firm. By offering this service to your temp employees you can get one last big revenue hit instead of just wishing them well when they leave. Some helpful hints: Do it with a team. It’s probably best to tackle this with a team instead of with a guy. As tempting as it will be to minimize the start up expense, a three person team offers several advantages:

    • They can share relationships. What we don’t want to see is the new line of business getting off to a good start, and the person bolt to start his or her own firm. As much as any business, this is a relationship sale. We want that relationship to be the property of the firm, not the employee.
    • It shows you’re serious. One person all alone may not adequately convey your intentions to be in it for the long haul (even if you’re not sure yourself).
    • They can feed off of each other. Without someone to compete with many sales people become complacent. Having a friendly competition in the perm placement division will benefit everyone. The weekly meetings will become much livelier if they’re all vying to be the top dog.
    • One of them can emerge as the manager. It’s a good idea to hire at least one person with experience. The job of manager of a growing division is the carrot.
    What’s in a name? This is a tougher issue. Should this perm division operate under the same brand as your established temp business? Or should it brand itself as a new entity. The answer is: “I don’t know”. By using the existing name, you have a chance to capitalize on all the good work you’ve done with your temp business. This will lead to more instantaneous brand recognition. On the other hand, if the perm thing doesn’t work out, it could have a negative impact on you brand. You should consider this carefully before starting. Have the right system in place. While you probably have a system in place to manage your temp placement effort already, it may not be suited to the nuances of the perm placement process. It will not be good enough to fill out a job order and check a box or add a code to indicate that it’s a perm order. The actual data you have to collect is different. The search and placement processes will be different. You’ll even find that the things you want to search on are different. Also, since you’re hoping to leverage your temp placement data into perm placements, the best system is one that offers a side-by-side temp and perm placement capability. The system must offer more in the document management area as well.

         
    Is medical factoring right for your medical office

     

    If you own a medical office that is growing, sooner or later you’ll run into cash flow issues. Unfortunately, every business that is growing – regardless of industry – runs into them. When faced with cash flow problems, most medical offices try to get a business loan or a line of credit. Although business loans can work well, they are not a panacea. For starters, they are not easy to get. But more importantly, they have set maximums. This means that you may outgrow the business loan if your business keeps growing quickly. This is a very important point because once you have outgrown a loan, it is very difficult to try and get a new one. The first one must be paid off. A better option may be medical factoring. Medical factoring is a financing tool designed to help medical offices. It eliminates the 60 to 90 days it takes to get claims paid and accelerates payment time to between 2 to 7 days. This can be a huge advantage if slow paying claims have put you at risk of: 1. Missing payroll 2. Missing rent or other payments 3. Delaying important hiring decisions Medical factoring can provide you with: 1. Funds to meet payroll 2. Funds to pay rent and vendors 3. Financing based on your claims. The more you bill – the more financing you get As opposed to business loans, medical factoring is easy to qualify for. The main requirement is that your office be up to date in taxes and be free of any tax or commercial liens. And it’s also quick to set up. It usually takes about 10 days to set up an account for initial funding, but all subsequent fundings happen within 24 hours of submitting the request. The process is very simple: 1. You submit claims to insurance companies and send a copy to the factoring company 2. The factoring company advances between 70% - 85% of your net expected collections 3. You get immediate funds. The factoring company waits to get paid 4. Once the factoring company is paid, the transaction is settled. Because of this, medical factoring is an ideal tool to streamline your medical office’s cash flow.

         
    Is your business compliant with sarbanes oxley standards

     

    This methodology allows you to define in a quantifyable manner the compliance tasks involved in your company. All of the companies which use a type of Sarbanes Oxley software have the same financial data collection and their reporting needs are not really one and the same. For this reason, you should ask for help from your auditor or even an IT solution provider who is qualified and has a proven track record with regards to Sarbanes Oxley compliance issues. If you are unfamiliar with this you should know that it is not a particular product, but rather a methodology for business finance, thus when this article refers to software, it is not referring to any specific product, but software on this in general. 1. Contract Solutions For Businesses Next, when it comes to properly managing the Sarbanes Oxley software, you can also consider buying a contract management solution wherein dozens of software packages are available that will allow SMBs (Small to Medium-sized Businesses) to be able to stay on top when it comes to contract compliance as well as contract controls. While you're at it, you can look at Sarbanes Oxley software assessment tool as well as packages that will be able to help you identify you're company's current state, including assessments for your company's security. Your company's vulnerability remediation and your company's security-managed services. Assign the Sarbanes Oxley software compliance responsibility to someone that is highly dependable, right away. It is recommended that when it comes to the compliance committee for the company, should be consisted of the company's CIO, CEO, as well as the CFO. As for the company's compliance officer, in effect, he or she becomes the primary source for both the financial and the non-financial data that would be obtained by the company. 2. Write A Complicance Plan Another tip for SMB decision makers who wants to survive the whole Sarbanes Oxley software system: you should be able to write a compliance plan for the whole company. When you do this, you should make sure that the plan can cover the whole company, each and every division of it from the lowest ranking to the highest ranking employee levels and that each and every one of these employees are briefed about the company's compliance requirements. 3. Foster Good Communication The next Sarbanes Oxley software survival tip is to be able to develop an efficient communications plan wherein you should definitely make sure that this task will be performed accordingly as a part of the development of the company compliance itself. The purpose for this communications plan is to ensure that each and every one of the company's employees will be able to have a personal opinion on the matter wherein when it comes to having questions about the compliance or the Sarbanes Oxley software they have people whom they can ask to be able to get the answers that they need in order to understand the Sarbanes Oxley software. 4. Make Financial Information Readily Available Next up for your Sarbanes Oxley software survival guide is you have to make sure that the financial reporting system for your company is accessible to all employees. You can have it made available for the whole company through intranet while you can give other people who are from outside your company access to this through internet. Since you are aiming at helping the whole company get comfortable with using the Sarbanes Oxley software applications system, you should start by ensuring that the whole company will be able to gain access to these financial reports. 5. Go Real Time For The Most Up-To-Date Information Next Sarbanes Oxley software tip is to consider building a real-time system for financial reporting for your business, this way, it is highly recommended that the company's SMBs consider setting in place a system that will be able to provide real time as well as highly visible financial information, since the whole company will be sharing these financial reports, you might as well get ones that are up-to-date. 6. Provide Information And the last tip for Sarbanes Oxley software survival for SMB decision makers is to get everyone in your company involved In the whole process, you should be able to make sure that all the employees no matter what their ranking is (meaning not just the company directors or officers) should know as well as are able to understand how the Sarbanes Oxley software operates.

         
    Is your organization at risk without a sufficient backup and recovery system

     

    What if you lost physical access to your office? Could you be back in business at another location within a couple of days? If not, you should explore cost-effective, reliable backup choices. No one ever thinks it could happen to them. Yet, we have all seen and possibly experienced the devastation that can be caused from natural disasters, accidental file destruction or even terrorist attacks. Everyone needs to think about what would happen if all business operations suddenly came to a halt. Could your business recover if you lost all of your data? Data backups is a subject so overdone that it has become “incidental”. Today, everyone knows that they need to be taking backups of their system data and the big issue today is that everyone “assumes” that this is being done at their companies. Network people are hired to install the network and “everybody” naturally assumes that this was part of the set-up and that somehow this is magically being taken care of. This is a big mistake. All companies, large and small, need to have a secure backup and recovery plan in place. The key word here is perhaps “recovery”. Having been in the software business for over 20 years, I am no longer amazed when companies routinely perform backups and yet never test them to see if they are actually working. When it comes time to restore, it’s an unpleasant surprise to find out that the backup wasn’t really backing anything up or it was not backing up the correct files. Having a sound plan in place extends farther than simply running a tape every night (which by the way is mandatory step one in the process). In addition, tapes need to be rotated each night so that the same tape is not being used over and over again. One never knows when one may need to recover data from a couple of days ago because the current data is not good. A tape should exist for each day of the week that the system gets backed up (minimum 5 days). Besides the rotation, copies should be kept off site, preferably in a safety deposit box and/or another secure location that is not in the immediate area of the office. It should be a site that can be accessed quickly if data needs to be retrieved. Ideally, the off-site copy should be refreshed at least once a month. Besides the daily backup tapes, backups should be taken at the end of the month, quarter and year. These backups should never be used again and should be clearly labeled in the event that you need to access the data. If you are doing payroll, the government can call at anytime, even in several years. You want to be prepared. Not being able to produce the data can mean penalties, legal and accounting fees. Running a backup tape and keeping it off site is just the beginning of the process. Backups need to be periodically tested to ensure that data is being copied. A knowledgeable, technical person should be in charge of this task. The line, “you can never have enough backups” is very true. However, testing that the backup you are taking is “good” is equally important. Having a good routine for taking, testing and storing backups is critical. If your data is protected, even if you do not have access to your office and even if your server is destroyed, you can always restore on another system at another site. We had customers that had offices near ground zero and were unable to return to their buildings for quite some time. In a couple of days, with good backup tapes, they were able to restore to new hardware at another location and were back in business within a couple of days. Being prepared is the difference between business recovery and business failure. In addition to the physical backup plan, every company should have a plan in writing that outlines the steps that the company will take to recover and resume work at locations other than the office. The plan should encompass not only the steps that will be taken to restore the data, but how and where the employees will access the data. If remote access is possible how would that option work? Would multiple offices be blended into one temporary central location? Several possibilities and solutions should be available so that most situations can be addressed without a last minute appeal for a solution. A disaster represents many challenges, most of which cannot be prepared for. Restoration of data and resumption of use of the data is one thing that can be arranged. Unfortunately, this type of plan is traditionally not a top priority and considered secondary to the core business operations. The primary point to keep in mind, however, is that it is essential to securing and preserving core business operations. The smart business choice is a solid backup and recovery plan.

         
    Isuzu corporate overview

     

    The Isuzu brand is one of the least known of the Japanese car brands sold in the North American market. Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Mitsubishi, and Subaru are all well recognized and respected Japanese makes while Isuzu lives perpetually in their shadow and underneath the wings of world auto giant, General Motors. Let’s take a look at Isuzu and what makes this car company tick. In 1981, Isuzu followed competing Japanese automakers and entered the US, the world’s largest automobile market in terms of annual sales. Getting a late start, Isuzu had some catching up to do as each of its Japanese rivals had already established themselves in the lucrative American market. Indeed, it has always been perceived by automobile experts that if an automaker was going to be successful in the world, then they needed to establish a foothold in the highly competitive U. S. market. Earlier models from Isuzu included the I-Mark, a compact four door sedan; the Stylus, which replaced the I-Mark; the Trooper, a compact SUV; the Impulse, a sporty two door coupe; and the P’up, a compact pick up truck. Unfortunately for Isuzu, bad publicity and a small marketing network have limited the brand in its quest to grow. A report completed by industry watchdog, Consumer Report’s, alleged that 1995 and 1996 model year Troopers, “…have too great a tendency to roll over in certain situations." Consumer Report’s also gave the vehicle a rare “not acceptable” rating, something very few vehicles have ever received by the group over the years. In a previous negative report during the 1980s for the Suzuki Samurai, sales of the Samurai plunged. Indeed, Suzuki is another Japanese make with limited appeal. Could Consumer Report’s findings adversely effected both companies? Some experts believe this to be true, judging by their respectively small market shares. Eventually, many of the original models in the Isuzu line up were replaced to give the automaker a better footing in the U. S. During the early 1990s, Isuzu decided to stop importing cars, concentrating solely on pick up trucks and SUVS. An overhauled Trooper joined the Amigo and Rodeo in the Isuzu line up followed a number of years later by the VehiCross. Isuzu’s thrust into the U. S has all but stopped and, for now, they do not import a single vehicle into the U. S., relying instead on their relationship with GM, who owns 12% of the company, to sell rebadged GM vehicles as Isuzus. At last count, Isuzus sales were averaging about 1,000 vehicles per month, certainly not a sustainable figure for any car producer. So, what keeps Isuzu going? A few things: diesel engines and GM. As a world class manufacturer of diesel engines, Isuzu provides engines for – you guessed it – GM trucks. Filling a glaring void in the GM line up, Isuzu has turned from an automotive importer to an automotive supplier; at least as far as the North American market is concerned. GM, in turn, has invested heavily in Isuzu and together they have joint ventures around the globe including a shared stake in an Australian operation. The long term strategy for Isuzu is unclear, but it does appear that the North American market is unsustainable at least as far as the passenger car market goes. The company does have a line of commercial vehicles that are sold in the US which are favored by companies needing an economical, but compact commercial truck in their fleet. Couple that with their relationship with GM, Isuzu’s future may well lay in the areas of engine supplier and commercial vehicle provider, two niches that have been successful so far for the Japanese company.

         
    It ll be all right on the night

     

    There was only a week to go before the major product launch and Sara had a “concern”; a phrase she used when she was shaking in her boots with sheer panic. She had been checking with all of the presenters to make sure that their presentations were well into development, if not complete and, although she had not heard or read them all from end-to-end, she could tell that there was an unacceptable amount of repetition. The audience was in danger of walking out after the first hour if she could not convince these high-flying executives to modify their approach. Originally, Sara, as the event organizer, thought she could avoid a rehearsal to save cost and time, she now saw that this might be the only way to rapidly convince the presentation team to “adjust” their material. “Adjust”, in this case, might mean “completely rewrite” but it sounds less challenging. Wherever possible, it makes sense for the entire event team to assemble before the event to run through the complete timetable. If this cannot be done at the venue, then find somewhere that is a close approximation to the venue in size and shape. Lay out the audience seating as you believe it will be and provide the equipment that will be available on the day. Invite along a few colleagues who can spare the time to act as the audience and provide valuable feedback. As the event organizer, you should be most interested in the timing of each activity and, if elements of the program turn out to be too long or too short, don't try to debate how to change them there and then. Let the entire event run its course, take copious notes about areas for improvement and then once the final words of the event have been spoken, hold a formal review meeting to discuss how the program or the timetable should be modified in order to better fit the time available. Other review subjects may include: • presentation content • quality, consistency and clarity of slides • segue design between elements • energy levels in the audience throughout the event If you have not run an event before, this is a useful opportunity to gauge how much time you will need to set up and dismantle everything that is to be used on the day and to plan any last minute changes that might need to be made. Sara's “concern” was quickly taken on board by the entire presentation team when they were given an opportunity to sit and listen to each other's scripts during the rehearsal day and they quickly decided on a recovery strategy. As a result, on the day the event flowed effortlessly from beginning to end without noticeable repetition. According to the audience feedback, they were entertained and informed and they found the presentations to be slick and professional. Although Sara may not have been fully recognized for saving the day, she was praised for her quiet efficiency as event organizer.

         
    It s all about speed

     

    (speed) n. 1. Mathematics & Physics. Distance traveled divided by the time of travel. 2. Business & Life. The ratio of results to time invested. Speed is distance (results) divided by time, period. Some leaders confuse this with the “fool’s gold” formula: action divided by time. This is a costly and destructive illusion that produces one of two fatal results: either attempting to avoid speed altogether by deferring action, and becoming stagnant—or “red-lining” the culture into a pattern of unbridled acceleration. So speed either becomes the great enemy, or part of the self-crafted mirage masking fundamental flaws in strategy, execution, or both. Review any business periodical or annual report, and you will likely read about the virtues of rapid action or the wisdom of waiting. This makes for great copy, but when the anesthesia wears off, we’re left with a debilitating hangover and the sobering reality that action isn’t the problem or the answer: It’s all about Speed. Life may be full of choices, but speed isn’t one of them. Speed is no more optional than gravity or evolution. Speed is part of every marriage, every friendship, every contest, every physical and emotional interaction on the planet. And without question, speed is a critical component of any business model. Ultimately, all business results are measured against the one constant in the universe . . . time. Revenue is measured against time. Service is measured against time. Customer loyalty, production, earnings per share, debt, turnover, cost of goods sold, tax burden, gross profit, net profit—any metric you, your employees, your leadership, or your competition can come up with, is inextricably tied to time. But we can’t manage time. If we are to increase speed, we have to work the other side of the equation—the results side. More specifically, we must identify and leverage those resources that create results. Yeah, I know. Leverage is one of those “consultant” words we all get so tired of hearing. But it may be the only word that accurately describes exactly what a leader is supposed to do—multiply force. In fact, if a leader can be likened to any inanimate object, then lever fits the bill. Let’s face it, if a leader already possessed all the force necessary to achieve the objective(s), he wouldn’t complicate things by involving other people. And if the people already had enough force to accomplish the objective(s), they wouldn’t need a leader. So . . . it’s the leader’s responsibility to multiply force - - leverage current resources to increase the ratio of results to time invested. Most sources of competitive advantage today—technology, talent, capital, intellectual property, even superior product -- have an incredibly short shelf life. And when the grease gets hot (yesterday’s advantage becomes today’s norm) organizations can become extremely vulnerable. Specifically, we’re at the mercy of three distinct populations keenly focused on their own survival and prosperity: - Acutely perceptive employees who ultimately determine the organization’s level of discretionary effort - Increasingly sophisticated and unforgiving customers - Faster, more nimble competitors poised to create and fill the next void Organizations that consciously manage and monitor speed (pair high velocity business practices with their other sources of competitive advantage, to meet more needs for more people in less time) strengthen their culture, grow their customer base, and dominate their market. Leaders who neglect speed -- fail to incorporate a systematic, deliberate process for increasing the ratio of results to time invested—are Frying Bacon In the Nude . . . It might feel good at first, appear very liberating, and even produce short-term gains. But without the right disciplines in place, we’re dangerously overexposed and very likely to get burned—even permanently scarred—by one or more of these three critically important constituencies. High Velocity Leaders simply won’t take the chance. They understand the critical nature of speed, its role in meeting their market, and the key disciplines necessary for producing Better Results in Less Time. Top performers in every arena consistently (relentlessly) commit themselves to the fundamentals. They religiously apply just a handful of basic principles that give them that slight extra edge. So it should come as no surprise that fast, agile companies—and the people who lead them—exhibit a powerfully simple method of leadership thinking. Specifically, they express, model, and reward five distinct disciplines. The 5 Disciplines of High Velocity Leaders: SPEED® S tructure (repeatable processes and transferable tools for key tasks) P ersonal Accountability (taking, and expecting, personal responsibility for corporate results) E mpathy (understanding how and why a person/group thinks, feels, and acts) E ducation (establishing learning as a 24 / 7 / 365, job-critical responsibility) D irection (clearly communicating where we’re going and why) Consider the common characteristics shared by all five: - All are present to some degree in every company—including yours. - All are unrealized to some degree in every company—including yours. - Each has an immediate and direct impact on performance. - All are as dangerous in their absence as they are powerful in their presence. Combined, they strengthen (exponentially) any other form of competitive advantage we may possess. And most importantly, all five are under our direct control: Simply put, they can and should be managed. WHY SPEED? Speed Kills (The Competition) In virtually every industry, the first to market enjoys as much as ten times (10X!) the profit of its nearest competitor. More importantly, after this first leg of the race is over, the Law of Compensation kicks in. And with few exceptions, prosperity is distributed in direct proportion to the quantity and quality of service rendered. In other words, organizations that meet the most needs for the most people with an increasing “economy of motion” dominate their respective markets. Speed Cures . . . Speed, as a method of leadership thinking and a cultural mentality, displaces a variety of organizational pathologies. Like a powerful antibiotic, speed travels through the corporate bloodstream neutralizing the debilitating diseases of procrastination, apathy, confusion, malicious compliance, blame, and victim thinking. The 5 SPEED® disciplines literally increase the organization’s metabolism—transforming the corporate body from a pot-bellied couch potato into a sleek, agile athlete—teeming with vitality, armed with momentum, and uniquely “fit” to meet the rigors of an increasingly competitive marketplace. Momentum is a natural by-product of—and increases or decreases in direct proportion to—speed. Momentum is the “wonder drug” of achievement. This intangible, yet powerful, resource allows athletes to play with pain, salespeople to endure temporary defeat, friends to forgive transgressions, and leaders to produce extraordinary results through ordinary people. Like compound interest for the diligent investor, momentum works while you sleep. It magnifies original effort and rewards consistent discipline. Speed is Exponential . . . Even incremental shifts in speed produce quantum results. At a distance of 100 yards, raising or lowering the barrel of a high-powered rifle by as little as 1/8th of an inch will alter the strike point of a bullet by as much as 4 to 6 inches on the target. Also, as in business, environmental variables such as the amount of gunpowder (new technologies, high-caliber talent) or windage (competition, economic recession) must be factored in to produce consistent results. The skilled marksman, recognizing this, has a pre-determined plan for adjusting his sighting device a certain number of “clicks” to compensate for these variables as they appear. To take the analogy one step further, you’ll find that most sportsmen will use sandbags as a stabilizing device when initially sighting in their weapon. And when hunting game in the field, they will try to reproduce this advantage, if possible, by using a nearby tree or rock to prop their rifle up against. Likewise, the five SPEED® disciplines stabilize our business practices. They help us guide and direct precious momentum to strike our targets accurately within an acceptable margin of error. Speed is not an additive—nor is it a simple multiplier. Because it truly is an exponential variable, one small degree of speed advantage can compensate for otherwise insurmountable differences in other resources. By the same token, one small degree of speed lost can render any other form of competitive advantage useless. Lessons From The Quick & The Dead: In this age of advanced technology, rapid change, accelerated communications, and increasingly sophisticated customers, two distinct types of organizations are beginning to emerge: The Quick . . . and The Dead! Like the fearless gunfighters of Wild West lore, anyone traveling in the fast lane must be keen of eye, steady of hand, and driven with steeled resolve. The road is narrow, and paved with stones (problems and opportunities) of every shape and size. On either side of the white lines lie fatal SPEED® Traps: business practices that destroy momentum, consume resources, and severely reduce the ratio of results to time invested. Between the ditches of this commerce autobahn are fast, nimble competitors, fickle customers, and wayward employees. There is no other road to success, no 4th quarter shortcut to prosperity. Your only decision—your only source of leverage—is the extent to which you choose to preach, practice, and promote the five key disciplines of High Velocity Leadership . . . High Velocity Leadership SPEED® CHECK: S tructure Do my people have repeatable, transferable processes for key tasks? Have I clearly defined roles and responsibilities? Have I created a culture that values structure as an implementation tool? Am I personally using structured processes to achieve objectives? Am I rewarding my people for using repeatable, transferable methods? P ersonal Accountability Do I hold people individually responsible for meeting company objectives? When my people fail, do I hold them responsible for returning the learning to the organization? Have I created a culture that values personal accountability as a business tool? Am I consistently asking myself “What can I do? / What could I have done?” when planning strategies and evaluating results? Am I rewarding people for taking personal ownership for corporate results? E mpathy Am I tailoring my management approach to reach a variety of communicating styles? Am I helping my people customize their strategies and tactics to impact many different “frames of reference” (mind-sets, points of view)? Have I created a culture that values empathy as a business tool? Am I personally investing the time and energy to understand my people before trying to be understood? Am I rewarding thinking/behavior geared to meet the unique needs of different employees and customers? E ducation Am I effectively using new information to create new results? Am I providing my employees with practical training that helps them drive our business strategies more effectively? Have I created a culture that values education as a business tool? Am I personally participating in some type of learning activity on a regular basis? Am I rewarding my people for engaging in self-development? D irection Do my people have a clear sense of where we’re going – and why? Are my decisions and actions consistent with our stated goals? Have I created a culture that values direction as an implementation tool? Do I personally understand and agree with our direction? Am I rewarding my employees for utilizing direction as a basis for making critical decisions?

         
    It s okay to be happy at workplace

     

    Yes, it’s ok to allow yourself the luxury of being enthusiastic, light hearted, inspired, relaxed and happy at workplace. If you don’t do this, you are self-denying your true potential. It’s unfortunate that many people think that a happy demeanor at office would appear ‘Strong’ and ‘out of place’ to other people including coworker, clients and employee. Often they wrongly assumed that if someone is looking happy, he/she must be satisfied with the status quo and, therefore, lacks the necessary motivation to excel in his/her work or to go to the extra mile. And s/he simple can’t compete in a competitive environment. This sort of thinking creates huge amount of stress at workplace. Many employers are of the view that they should not allow their employees to be very happy as they may lose their edge. It’s absolute non-sense to believe that a relaxed, happy person is necessarily lacking in motivation. In reality, happy people are almost always the ones who love what they do. It has been observed again and again that people who love what they do are highly motivated by their own enthusiasm and continue improving themselves and their performance. They are not only good listeners but also quick learner. Further, almost all of them are highly creative, charismatic, easy to go around and very good team players. On the contrary if we consider unhappy people, we find that they often held back by their own misery or stress, which often distract them from success. Rigid and stressed out people are a drag to be around and difficult to work with, always adding negative vibes in the environment. They lack motivation owing to their being consumed with their own problem, lack of time and stress. Unhappy people often feel victimized by others & their working conditions. It’s difficult for them to be solution oriented as they see everything as someone else’s fault. In addition, they are usually poor team players because they are often self-centered and pre-occupied with their own issues. They are defensive and almost always poor listeners. Despite having o many negative traits, if they are successful, it is despite their unhappiness not because of it. If an unhappy, stressed out but successful person can learn to become happier, he or she will become even more successful. So my dear friend! Please rest assured. It’s okay to be happy, kind, patient and more relaxed at workplace. It will be to your great advantage – both personally and professionally. You won’t lose your edge. Just be happy and be natural with a positive frame of mind at your workplace. Dong this, you will not be uncaring or unmotivated. Rather you’ll feel more inspired, creative and driven to make an even greater contribution than you do right now. This habit will give you the ability to see the solutions and opportunities where others see problems. Similarly, rather than being discouraged by setbacks or failures, you’ll bounce back quickly and resiliently. I one read in a book that if we start thinking positively and act happily, positive force of the nature start attracting towards us. Dare to be happy and your life will begin to change immediately. Your life and your work will take a greater significance and it’ll feel like an extraordinary adventure. Others’ll love you. Number of your friends will soar and that of your rivals/enemies will drop.

         
    It s your move the first step to accountability

     

    : Every place I go, if I’m in an organization long enough, I’ll hear people lament about the lack of accountability. Specifically, I hear things like: “They just don’t seem to care enough, I guess.” “Those action items never get done – I don’t know why we even identify them.” “I have trouble getting people to be committed to achieving the things they are responsible for.” “Everyone wants to blame someone else – it is never their responsibility.” These comments come from every level, and they are referring to people both above them organizationally, as well as those that may work for them. In other words the concern is widespread and includes everyone. People are concerned because a lack of accountability is frustrating, but they also know that tremendous productivity and efficiencies can be gained when more people are accountable for completing their tasks, commitments and expectations. Accountability is an important thing. Unfortunately, inherent in most all of the comments above and in the many conversations I’ve had is that people think the accountability gap is about someone else. “They” aren’t accountable. “They” need to improve. The focus is on fixing the behavior of others. While this might be true, this is the wrong place to put the focus, at least at first. Take a Look in the Mirror If you want greater accountability around you, start by being more accountable yourself. Before you tune me out, I know what some of you are thinking… “I’m just a middle manager – it’s not my responsibility.” “I’m just a supervisor - I can’t change it.” “I’m nobody – it doesn’t matter what I do.” Maybe you are in one of these roles. Or maybe you are a senior leader, or the CEO. It doesn’t matter what your role is or how long you have been in the organization. Let me say it again. If you want greater accountability around you, start by being more accountable yourself. If you want to engender and create greater accountability in those around you, you can start by being a good role model. You can be 100% accountable yourself. I’m reminded of what my father often told me: “When you point a finger towards someone else there are four times as many fingers pointing back at you.” Being accountable is about figuring out how you can make things better. Other people’s actions aren’t in your control, and many events aren’t in your control either, but your response to these situations and events is completely in your control. You can choose to be 100% accountable and responsible for your response. Some Questions While thinking about the challenges you face with accountability in your organization, ask yourself the following questions: • What is my role in this situation? • What am I doing (or not doing) to promote the situation as it currently exists? • What about this situation is in my control? • What am I thinking? • What are my beliefs? • What can I do to have an impact? • What can I do differently to change the result? Asking these questions takes courage, because it takes away your ability to blame others. Asking these questions may be a change of your habits. Asking these questions may be hard, because the answers may require work. Courageous and difficult, perhaps, but these are the questions of a 100% accountable person.

         
    Janera global nomads global culture magazine human globalization global social network by janera. com

     

    :   THE VOICE OF GLOBAL NOMADS - JANERA Global Nomads are the people of with any nationality, religion or age who have lived in one or more countries other than their native country, they come to live according to their parents occupation. By this childrens are raised to global nomads with other than their culture living in mobile internationally for any professional reasons. so global nomads have to share a unique culture to express or raise their voice in communities. Here there is a online social network for global nomads living internationally to raise their voice. Janera is a online social network community or publication created about global nomads to raise their voice to people in the community. Global Nomads has experience in making and losing of friends, because of their mobility in living, so janera provides a membership for global nomads to join as a member, we create a vibrant community for global nomads where we link across the streets,. cities, towns, sea, oceans by creating the virtual world for global nomads. Janera is founded and edited by janera soerel and the values are added by allison leigh de frees, farrah sarafa, hannah wallace by editing in various ways. The membership is provided by invitation or application. After becoming a member as a global nomad you can post events and gatherings, engage in lively discussions, attend janera live events, invite other members. So register now with janera to raise your sights as global nomad. Leave your inquiries for [email protected] or [email protected]   Home | About Us | Events | News | Images | Films | Register | Site Map      

         
    Keep your lunch money

     

    Ahh, we all remember the bully from grade school who performed his usual schoolyard shake down on anyone who was intimidated enough to make with the lunch money or go home with a shiner on the eye. However, many of our childhood stories of bullies end up in some kid finally having the courage to stand up and say ‘ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!’ Times haven’t changed all that much when it comes to the workplace. Increasingly, employees are educating themselves, (or in some cases, educated by others) on the vulnerability of an employer when it comes to claims made through the department of labor. We’ve all heard of the thousands of law suits that yield tenacious employees millions of dollars. Disgruntled employees looking for the quick buck may just set their sights on an unsuspecting but well-intentioned employer. So how do we stand up to this bully? Many are saying it will cost the employer less to just ‘pay the employee off and get rid of them’ to avoid the cost of a lengthy legal battle. To those, the time has come to say, ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! When investigating a claim from the employer’s end, the first question, and often the most difficult to answer, is was the scenario intentional. In other words, does the employee have a valid claim? In some cases, the employee may have been mistreated and not given ample opportunity to resolve the matter. However, in other cases the claim is without basis and many times out right fraudulent. The line must be drawn here. By creating an industrial culture that fosters ‘extortion’, we simply perpetuate the situation and welcome more claims and more costly legal battles. When confronted with a clearly fraudulent claim, FIGHT IT. Examine your documentation, have your HR Representative assist you in constructing an explanation of the facts. This is what the Department of Labor is most interested in. And as we all know, he with the most documentation WINS. You may find yourself threatened by representatives from the claimants party with promises of lawsuits or other legal action, but fear not. Bowing out gracefully only encourages this type of behavior. As an employer, particularly one with a sizable bank account, you are a sizable and worthwhile target. Minimizing your liability requires strong documentation policies and ethical labor practices. If presented with a claim, consult your HR Representative or a company that does HR consulting immediately and invest the time in presenting a concise, detailed and factual response to the DOL. Fight it, all the way to the top if you have to but FIGHT IT. Particularly if your company’s integrity is at stake. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

         
     
         
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