How to Combat Email Phishing and Other COVID 19 Scams

How to Combat Email Phishing and Other COVID 19 Scams


Ever since the outbreak of COVID-19, the number of cyber scams have alarmingly increased as scammers try to prey on a fearful global community. Over the last few weeks, especially, people around the world have raised concerns about receiving various forms of email phishing, such as false alerts, scam threads, and misleading emails.

COVID-19 Scams

We at Zoho Campaigns are concerned about the privacy and safety of our customers and your personal information, so this is a brief article on how you can avoid falling victim to phishing.

Why would someone send phishing emails now?

Cyber criminals are conveniently using the pandemic as a means to get access to people’s sensitive data through emails delivered to their computer systems and phones. These fraudulent emails capitalize on the fear of the recipients and their concerns about their protection against the virus, both physically and economically.

Additionally, there’s also been a sharp rise in the number of website (domain) registrations and SSL certificates that carry the name “COVID,” “Corona,” or “COVID-19.”

Phishing is primarily done for the hacker to locate and control your details like passwords, credentials, credit card information, and more. It could arrive as a malicious link click, malware download, or information feed of any kind through emails. As recipients are more likely to cede to their fears and perform any action stated in the emails to safeguard their health and safety, these cyber criminals have been thriving steadily for the last few weeks.

What could be treated as a phishing email?

Now that we know the intention behind these hackers, the next focus is to identify what could be potentially classified as phishing emails. At times like this, it’s likely that recipients will receive empathetic emails from brands that show care and support. But it’s also important to avoid certain emails that can unknowingly bring harm to you.

Here are some common email types that have been received by users worldwide and treated as phishing:

Impersonating government or international bodies

These emails mention the World Health Organization (WHO), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and so on, in the email content, subject line, or the sender address, while including malicious URLs that take you to random websites or attachments that can spoil your system when downloaded.

Eg. WHO does not send email from addresses ending in ‘@who.com’ , ‘@who.org’ or ‘@who-safety.org’.

COVID-19 Scam

[Source: Proofpoint]

Donations, financial or relief aids, and charitable trusts

Most scammers send these emails in order to collect money from you either through bank transactions or bitcoins. Additionally, they can also hack your banking accounts, retrieve personal data, and cause problems with future transactions. Some emails even offer fake tax refund eligibility for the donation that you may provide.

COVID-19 Scams

[Source: Mimecast]

Medicinal cures, face masks, and vaccines

Since many people are captured by the fear of the disease, scammers will prey upon this fear and project false goodwill in the form of health advice or a remedy to the disease through medicines and vaccines. Emails may specify purchasing these vaccines, home remedial cures, or even face masks—a way for the hackers to get your data and cheat you with wrong products or leave you empty-handed.

COVID-19 Scam

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

[Source: Forbes – Phishing email promising a vaccine for COVID-19.]

Travel, entertainment, and logistics

With transportation, manufacturing, and many other industries stalled, scammers are sending emails with lucrative offers and coupons to redeem for entertainment or travel facilities—for example, a subscription to movie-hosting services or a false renewal for a travel ticket that was already canceled.

COVID-19 Scams

[Source: Economic Times – A sample WhatsApp message people were asked to send, after filling up a survey in the fake email sent regarding Netflix’s free subscription for the lockdown period.]

Steps to avoid the risk of Covid-19 scams and phishing

While you can’t completely stop cyber attackers from sending phishing emails, there are some precautionary steps you can take before you respond to an email. Here’s a quick five-point checklist:

1. Verify the sender’s email address and name before you open and process the email. Additionally, look out for the brand/company logo to ensure credibility.

2. Don’t download the attachments before you read the email content fully. Also, in any case of suspect or misleading content, avoid any kind of email downloads.

3. Before clicking on the inline URLs or call-to-action buttons, hover your cursor over the link to see where it leads. There are many fake domains that may be interlinked but kept discreet with convincing inline URL text (for example, a link that reads “WHO” taking you to the scam website). So, copy and paste the URL embedded in the text instead of clicking.

4. Ensure the email content doesn’t have many spelling errors, grammatical mistakes, or faulty layouts.

5. Don’t rush to provide your personal information when asked in any manner inside the email—form, survey, or fields. Think twice and validate your call before feeding your details for anything, from submission to transaction.

Legitimate sources of COVID-19 information

Instead of giving in to scam emails, follow some authentic and credible sources of information like the WHO and CDC. You can also keep tabs on your preferred online news platforms, official/government-run news sources (online and offline), social channels, or e-magazines, to stay up to date.

You can also check the live dashboard from Zoho, which reflects COVID-19 statistics from countries across the world.

We hope you and your family stay safe, both from the virus as well as the cyber criminals and their email phishing activities.

Take care, and feel free to get in touch with us at support@zohocampaigns.com for any assistance.

~ Zoho Campaigns Team




Source link

Zoho Projects: Comprehensive Project Management Tool Focused on User Security, Privacy and Affordability

Zoho Projects: Comprehensive Project Management Tool Focused on User Security, Privacy and Affordability


Zoho Projects is an online task and project management tool designed for small businesses scalable enough for enterprise use.

Projects enables users to organize project activities, assign tasks, and manage resources to reach goals on-time and under budget. It also allows collaboration among team members, clients, and outsourced providers, granting access to information on an as-needed basis. The platform can be simple to use or as comprehensive as business needs require.

“Our company’s aim is to minimize the amount of work needed to use Projects and increase collaboration among businesspeople by making an accessible and affordable productivity solution,” said Aravind Rajkumar, Product Marketing Manager for Zoho Projects, in an interview. “We think a project management tool shouldn’t be too complicated for people to use or too expensive. You have to strike a balance. That’s what we’re trying to do with Projects.”



Zoho Projects

Zoho Projects is replete with features that make it one of the most all-inclusive project management tools on the market.

The product is:

Comprehensive – Projects has nearly everything needed for effective project management and collaboration, including task management, in-depth reporting, chat, and a social media style feed.

Highly Customizable – Users can customize nearly every aspect of the platform, from user interface (UI) colors to views to reports and more.

Scalable – Zoho Projects can grow with the customer’s business operations. “They can use it as a simple task management application or choose to use it as a full-blown project management application to manage their entire portfolio,” Rajkumar said.

(It’s worth noting that Zoho tracks all of its operations in Projects, including product development of the company’s vast ecosystem — more than 50 applications.)

Task Management

Projects started its life in 2006 as a stand-alone task management tool used internally by Zoho employees. (Self-reliance is a core part of Zoho’s ethos, so it develops the tools it needs in-house rather than using third-party applications.)

Since then, Projects has gone through six different UI revamps and is on the verge of going public with the seventh iteration, set for release in January 2021.

“Projects was first called Challenger, and then Tasks,” Rajkumar said. “We then brought in advanced features and rebranded it to be much bigger than just a task management tool.”

Security

Because Zoho provides software to millions of users worldwide — 50 million at last count — it places special emphasis on securing user data and privacy. That includes locking down everything from the organization (e.g., conducting employee background checks) to the physical plant, from its network and data to operations, and each of its more than 50 applications.

All of Zoho’s products, including Projects, is GDPR and CCPA compliant. HIPAA compliance is currently in the works to enable use by healthcare professionals.

A dedicated security team closely monitors all aspects of development, workflows, and user data. User’s emails, even those on the free plans, are not used for advertising.

On the product side, Zoho ties security and privacy to Projects in various ways.

Customized roles and profiles (including client profiles) allow complete control over what information users can see or activities they can perform.

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

Workflow security via Blueprint (a workflow automation component) enables people to work on various facets of a given task, specifically the part where they are involved.

Fields marked as PII (Personally Identifiable Information) ensure data is encrypted, and administrators can create a log file to check access details.

(Learn more about how seriously Zoho takes security by visiting this page.)

Affordability

Affordability is another key feature. The platform is free for up to three users and two projects. Premium pricing starts at $3 per user per month for the Standard plan and goes to $6.00 per user per month for the fully-loaded Enterprise edition.

Additional Features

Other key platform features include:

Social Project Management

Zoho has added social elements to Projects, such as feeds, forums, a knowledge base, and chat rooms.

Time Tracking

Projects has several tools to help users stay on schedule and account for work hours. These include timesheets, invoicing, and a planning calendar.

Task Automation

A new drag-and-drop interface makes automating tasks easier to visualize and deploy.

Third-party App Integration

Zoho may not rely on third-party apps to run its operation but does allow Projects to integrate with apps like Slack, Google, Dropbox, Microsoft Office, and many more.

New Version Set for January Release

Zoho has set the release of the newest version of Projects (the seventh) for January 2021. Currently, in beta, it features a complete UI makeover. It provides a seamless, consistent user experience across all devices: web and mobile. It also incorporates artificial intelligence (Zoho has its own AI platform called “ZIA”) for forecasting and reporting. Current Projects users can request early access by filling out the form on this page.

Visit Zoho.com to learn more about the company and its product portfolio.

Image: zoho.com


More in:




Source link

How to Handle the “Living at Work” Lifestyle

How to Handle the “Living at Work” Lifestyle


The COVID pandemic for small businesses is now in its sixth month with no signs of abating. Even before the pandemic, small business employees and employers were dealing with the effects of an increasingly complex work-life reality; COVID-19 has driven a “living at work” lifestyle that is making this balance more difficult.

On the Small Business Radio Show this week, Jessica Moser, Senior Vice President, Small Business Solutions at MetLife discuss this paradox and the insight from their monthly Small Business Coronavirus Impact Poll.

Jessica Moser of MetLife on Living at Work

Jessica discusses that during the pandemic, work/life boundaries have become blurred because is it hard to tell when work starts and stops. She adds that “many employees feel they are on all the time.” In MetLife’s monthly poll, they found that 42% of small biz employers and employees say they struggle to navigate the demands of an “always-on” work/life world . In addition, 49% of employers cited burnout as a top concern (up significantly from 37% in 2019).

According to Jessica, the best way to navigate the always on culture is to listen to what your employees specific pain points are; “is it too many emails or Zoom calls? Are they feeling too isolated? This is how you start to create solutions. Remember, flexibility and support has always been a key differentiator for working at a small business.”

In the latest poll, MetLife found that small business employees are more worried about their financial health (55%) than their physical health (44%), a startling statistic in the midst of a global pandemic. Two thirds of employees are concerned their business will have to close again and 55% of small business leaders think it is going to take six more months to get to normal.

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

As Jessica points out, “if they are financially worried it’s hard to be productive.” She suggests that small businesses look at voluntary benefit options that provide security and flexibility to show your company cares about its staff.

According to the poll, employees value voluntary benefits even if they have to pay for them. 46% small business employees are interested in a wider array of benefits like dental, basic life insurance, and legal plans. Jessica believes it is critical for small business owners to communicate the value of all employee benefits since according to their survey, people understand their benefits feel better holistically.

Listen to the entire interview on the Small Business Radio Show.

READ MORE:




Source link

Can Small Businesses Limit the Talk of Politics in Their Company?

Can Small Businesses Limit the Talk of Politics in Their Company?


The politics around this presidential election has divided people this year more than any other in recent memory. It is no surprise that conversations around these divisive issues are spreading into small businesses and virtual offices everywhere. What rules can small business owners set for discussing politics at the office?

On the Small Business Radio Show this week, Jaime Lizotte, the HR and Tax Compliance Solutions Manager at ComplyRight talks about what is permitted and what can be limited at your small business when it comes to discussing politics.

Talking Politics in the Office

Jaime says that the First Amendment allows freedom of speech in the workplace, but small business owners are entitled to limit this freedom of expression in their own workplace. She says that you have an obligation to take measurements to make sure all employees feel safe and productive. As a result, employers can ban any political expression at their company and even penalize employees that still engage in it.

In reality, most small business owners strike a balance allowing some limited discussions. Jaime suggests giving your staff permission to excuse themselves from any conversation that makes them uncomfortable. Employers can tell their staff to keep their strong opinions to themselves when it comes to political conversation which can be construed as harassment.

Employers can limit political posters, shirts, buttons and hats in the office or on a video call. According to Jaime, taking a balanced approach is important; you can’t ban one political activity and not another.  Limit solicitation, contributions, emails, and texting on company time for political campaigns. Remember, employers can’t ask their employees to donate to a specific cause. This could be perceived as discrimination if the employee doesn’t donate and later they don’t get promoted or a raise.

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

Jamie recommends having this policy in writing using tools like HR Direct and then have each employee sign off on it.

Many employees are now becoming involved in political protests around the country. Can you terminate an employee for this activity? Jamie says for private companies, it depends on what state the business resides. States like California, New York and Nevada bans employers from retaliating against employees for this.  In other states, the rules are less clear. But, in all states, employers are not able to terminate employees for protesting things like work conditions.

Listen to the entire interview so you can formulate a plan for your small business around talking politics in the workplace.

Image: Small Business Radio Show




Source link

8 Habits of Happy Employees

8 Habits of Happy Employees


Happy employees are productive employees. They get more work done, they’re more motivated, they tend to stick with their employer longer, and of course, they have better health and better outcomes in their personal lives as well. You don’t need me to tell you that happiness is a good thing.

Unfortunately, for many employees, achieving happiness is easier said than done. If you’re an employee stuck in a rut of unhappiness or stagnation, or if you’re an employer hoping to give your employees a better shot at happiness, there are a handful of habits that can make a positive difference in your life.



The Habits of Happy Employees

These employee habits are highly correlated with employee happiness. Practicing them doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be happier—but it does give you much better odds of success.

1. Expressing gratitude.

One of the best things you can do for yourself is expressing gratitude on a regular basis. It’s been experimentally demonstrated that even a small expression of gratitude can instantly make you feel more positive emotions, and force you to look at the positive circumstances surrounding you. It’s also great for building relationships if you express gratitude to the people around you. Take time throughout your day to focus on what you like about your job, and the good things that are currently happening to you. For example, instead of lamenting your heavy workload, be grateful that you’re an indispensable asset to your company, or give thanks to your team for supporting you.

2. Assuming positive intent.

How often have you become frustrated or irritated with a coworker because of how they worded an email, only to find out that they meant nothing by it? In the modern world of digital communication, this is a common problem. Too often, people become wracked with negative feelings because of a simple misinterpretation of intent. Happy employees tend to assume positive intent at all times; instead of resorting to the worst possible interpretation of a message, stick with the best possible interpretation, and only deviate from that view when proven wrong.

3. Focusing on controllable factors.

Happy employees spend their time focusing on the variables they can control, rather than the ones they can’t control. There are many things you won’t be able to control in your job, from traffic on the way to work to the annoying buzzwords constantly slung by your coworkers. Don’t fixate on them; instead, keep your attention on the factors that are perfectly in your control.

4. Taking breaks.

There are conflicting theories for the best length of time for breaks, and the right number of breaks to take throughout the day, but one thing is certain; breaks are good for your mental wellbeing, and can boost your productivity. That’s why you’ll find that the happiest employees tend to take breaks regularly, and they feel no shame in doing so.

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

5. Taking vacations.

Similarly, happy employees tend to take vacations. No matter how much you love your job, it can become frustrating or tedious over time. Taking a vacation away from work is often the only real long-term solution. And when you take a vacation, take a real vacation—no checking email or knocking out tasks in the middle of your break.

6. Engaging with positive people.

Happy people tend to surround themselves with other happy people. Attitudes and feelings are contagious, so if you’re constantly engaging with other optimists and positive people, you’ll have a much easier time staying happy in your own position.

7. Exercising.

Have you ever noticed that people who work out regularly tend to be happier? It’s no coincidence. Happy employees often use their lunch break for a quick exercise routine, or make time for the gym before or after work. Exercise relieves stress, keeps you in better shape, and improves your mental and physical health in practically all areas. If you want to increase your happiness at work and in other areas of your life, schedule 20 to 30 minutes of exercise every day—even if you’re just walking around the block.

8. Learning, growing, and changing.

Happy employees also commit themselves to ongoing learning, growth, and change. They’re constantly seeking new modes of stimulation, and they never stay at the same level of cognition or skill for too long. This serves multiple important functions; seeking out new information is stimulating, learning new skills makes them feel empowered, and constantly pushing for new things leads to enjoyable, novel experiences in the workplace. It’s a perfect recipe for feeling happier.

When to Move On

These habits can increase your happiness at least marginally, and being happier can lead to higher productivity. However, there isn’t much they can do if you’re stuck in a toxic workplace or if you’re working in an industry that’s thoroughly uninteresting to you.

If you’ve tried these strategies and you’ve tried to change your workplace for the better to no avail, your only remaining option may be to move onto another opportunity. Just make sure you make a genuine attempt to improve your current position, and think through your decision carefully before following through.

Image: Depositphotos.com




Source link

14 Unique Ways to Encourage Innovation in Your Company

14 Unique Ways to Encourage Innovation in Your Company


As a business owner, you know your company can’t remain stagnant and stuck in its ways if it hopes to grow.

That growth requires innovation and creativity, both of which are best sourced from everyone on your team.



Advice to Encourage Innovation

To help you put your staff in an innovative mindset, we asked 14 members of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following question:

“What’s one unique way to encourage innovation in your company that others may not have considered?”

Here’s what YEC community members had to say:

1. Explore a New Technology Platform

“Select a new technology platform or service and challenge your team(s) to think about what they could do with it for the company or a client. Start with exploring the new tech and answering questions that might come up about it. Then, let the team(s) go away and come up with concepts, then return and share. For those with the capabilities, encourage a prototype or proof of concept.” ~ Andrew Howlett, Struck

2. Start a Company Book Club

“Do a book club together. I have my employees listen to audiobooks that tickle my fancy (or theirs), and then we discuss each week how we could apply those ideas to our business. Why recreate the wheel when you can just re-read it?” ~ Codie Sanchez, Contrarian Thinking & Entourage Effect Capital

3. Be Transparent About Your Challenges

“If your team doesn’t know what the biggest challenges are for the company, then the ideas they have for innovating may be focused on the wrong things. By being transparent about where you as a company need to improve, you can help people focus their thinking on solving the right problems.” ~ Kelsey Raymond, Influence & Co.

4. Admit (and Learn From) Your Past Failures

“Tell your new hires how you failed in the past. All newbies expect to hear about the company’s greatest successes when they first start out, but if you get into some of the more significant fails, that just might give them the ideas, motivations or thought processes to truly introduce innovation in your company.” ~ Andrew Schrage, Money Crashers Personal Finance

5. Encourage People to Use Their PTO

“Encouraging staff to take their allotment of vacation may not be an obvious way to encourage innovation, but it is. When employees are tired and burned out, they’re not as productive or creative. Reminding them to take their vacations will help them destress and decompress, so they come back to work with a clear mind that’s able to think more creatively.” ~ Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster

6. Reward Experimental Behavior

“If you want innovative employees, then it helps to encourage and reward experimental behavior. If they try something new that ends up benefiting the company, then you can make an announcement and offer them a gift card or some other form of compensation. Showing your appreciation will motivate your whole team to do the same so you get the results you’re looking for.” ~ Jared Atchison, WPForms

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

7. Hold Regular ‘Innovation’ Meetings

“Regular meetings where team members can snowball ideas and talk about different concepts are great for sparking innovation. These free-thinking sessions encourage your staff to think outside the box, which can lead to jaw-dropping breakthroughs.” ~ John Turner, SeedProd LLC

8. Have Employees Listen to Customers

“The best source of innovation comes from our customers and their experiences working with our products. I encourage my team to listen to what people are saying and to understand their pain points. When we identify a problem, that’s when an ‘aha!’ moment appears and we’re able to come up with something new and seemingly innovative, when it’s really just that we listened to customers and did something with it.” ~ Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner

9. Allow for Questions

“The best way to encourage innovation at work is to promote discussions and allow people to ask questions. It’s essential to create a ‘no stupid questions’ rule so that people don’t hold back from asking questions. When you encourage open discussions, you’ll create an environment that supports innovation.” ~ Blair Williams, MemberPress

10. Give People a Say in Company Decisions

“Allow your employees to have a say in decisions and give them the option of sharing their opinions and ideas. The members of your staff are the backbone of your company, so listening to what they have to say is important and will pave the way toward innovation.” ~ Patrick Barnhill, Specialist ID, Inc.

11. Establish Peer Recognition

“Reward innovation. Establish a formal innovation award where peers nominate one another. This creates a culture where innovation isn’t merely encouraged, it is rewarded. By having peers choose one another, the playing field opens up to anyone in any corner of the organization, frequently inviting more people to step forward with ideas.” ~ Matthew Podolsky, Florida Law Advisers, P.A.

12. Let Your Team Work During Their Peak Productivity Times

“We encourage innovation in our company by allowing our team to work when they are at peak productivity. We don’t have a strict start and end time for the day since our team is global. As a result, we see consistently positive results in terms of productivity and innovation. When people can work when their brain is ‘on,’ they can come up with some really good ideas.” ~ Chris Christoff, MonsterInsights

13. Take Advantage of ‘Small Talk’ Moments

“Our Friday 3:05 p.m. Cafecitos are our time to discuss new trends, news and tech updates companywide. What starts as Cuban coffee talk often results in action plans for adopting new strategies. Do not discount the moments of small talk, whether at the watercooler or while having a coffee break — all moments when you are together and active listening are fertile grounds for innovation.” ~ Matthew Capala, Alphametic

14. Create the Right Restrictions

“Create restrictions. Often we fail to innovate because we have too many options. This is why they say that necessity is the mother of invention — when you have just the right amount of restriction, you are able to get more creative with your solutions and create genius results.” ~ Nicole Munoz, Nicole Munoz Consulting, Inc.

READ MORE:

Image: Depositphotos.com




Source link

How to “Keep” Business Continuity During a Worldwide Pandemic

How to “Keep” Business Continuity During a Worldwide Pandemic


The word “business continuity” means something different these days. Many companies are just struggling to stay in business. So how do you keep your company profitable and your employees engaged especially when they are working from home?

On the Small Business Radio Show this week, Jeffrey Hayzlett who is a former Fortune 100 CMO, a primetime television host of C-Suite, and the author of numerous best-selling business books, talks about how to purposely practice business continuity in your organization today.

Jeffrey Hayzlett Interview

Jeffrey believes that every small business must move fast on business transformation with COVID- 19; there are a lot of companies still doing well. He suggests pushing hard to not just figure out how to survive but put together a plan where you can thrive.

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

During the pandemic, there are a lot of things small business owners don’t have control over. Jeff says that you need to focus on what you can get done. He suggests focusing on “the keeps”:

  1. Keep your customer engagement. Remember, out of sight is out of mind. Every company needs to turn up their marketing to help their customers to keep these connections alive during tough times
  2. Keep your employees focused. Boost your communication by decreasing email and do more video calls. He suggests getting together multiple times a week to foster team building. Let them have a lot of input into what happens next.
  3. Keep cash flowing. Stop non-essential expenses. Try to get longer terms from your vendors. Start projects early even if customers can’t pay now especially if you charge for your time which you won’t be able to sell later.
  4. Keep your team safe, healthy, and sane. This is so they don’t have additional things to worry about.

For more advice from Jeffrey, listen to the entire episode on the Small Business Radio Show.

Image: hayzlett.com




Source link

10 Tips for Changing the Way You Think About Your Small Business

10 Tips for Changing the Way You Think About Your Small Business


If you run a small business for long enough, you’ll need to change the way you think about certain concepts. From customer data to marketing strategies, making adjustments can help you stay relevant. Check out the tips below from members of the online small business community for changing your mindset.



Take a Fresh Look at Consumer Data

Businesses rely on data to draw conclusions about customer behavior. But as times change, you may also need to change the way you look at that data. In this Marketing Land post, Rodric Bradford explores the concept of consumer data during the age of COVID-19.

Think Strategically About Your Content Model

Lots of businesses use content marketing in some way. But do you have an actual content model? If you haven’t thought strategically about this concept yet, it may be time to do so. Robert Rose elaborates in this Content Marketing Institute post.

Grow Your Business with These SMS Marketing Statistics

SMS marketing can be an effective way to communicate with customers. If you haven’t considered this method for your business, learning the facts may help. Jessica Pereira lists some essential statistics in this Startup Bonsai post. You can also see commentary about the post over on BizSugar.

Include Effective Storytelling in Your B2B Marketing

Storytelling is a common tactic in B2C marketing. But it can be powerful when marketing to other businesses as well. In this TopRank Marketing post, Nick Nelson outlines how B2B businesses can make use of this tactic.

Make the Most of Your Budget

Every small business has a budget. So how you spend that money can go a long way toward determining your success. If you want to make the most of your budget, check out the tips in this SMB CEO post by Jonathan Merry.

Get More From Social Media

Many businesses already use social media in some way. But not all of them make the most of these platforms. To build a successful strategy, you may need to think like a TV network. Brent Csutoras explains in this Search Engine Journal post.

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

Create a Successful YouTube Channel

Some businesses include videos on their website and social media pages. But YouTube can be its own marketing channel. If you’re ready to create a successful YouTube channel, read the tips in this Pixel Productions post by Steve Conway. Then see what members of the BizSugar community are saying about the post here.

Learn Branding Lessons from a Viral Music Sensation

Business owners can learn valuable lessons from a variety of sources. Some may seem a bit unexpected — like viral video sensations. But Christian Zilles dives into this concept in a recent Social Media HQ post.

Set Up Microsoft Bing Shopping Campaigns for E-Commerce

Google is the king of online search ads. But it’s not the only player in town. If you want to rethink your online advertising strategy, you might consider Bing. Neil Patel offers thoughts and tips on the platform in this post.

Use These Low-Budget Marketing Ideas

Marketing your business doesn’t need to be expensive. If you want to stick to a strict budget but still make an impact, consider the ideas in this Crowdspring post by Ashlee Brayfield.

If you’d like to suggest your favorite small business content to be considered for an upcoming community roundup, please send your news tips to: sbtips@gmail.com.

Image: Depositphotos.com




Source link

How to Determine Pay Raises for Employees at Small Businesses

How to Determine Pay Raises for Employees at Small Businesses


Each company gauges the contribution of its employees differently. Some focus on deliverables, while others rely on employee loyalty and worked hours to determine a worker’s contribution to the business.

All of these assessment methods have the same goal in mind: to determine whether an employee deserves a raise or not. But how can a business determine which of these systems is best and most suitable for its own workforce?

How to Determine Pay Raises for Employees

To shed some light on the issue, we asked nine entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following:

“What’s your best method and/or process for determining pay raises for employees, and why do you prefer this strategy?”

Here’s what YEC community members had to say:



1. Factor in Industry Standards

“I always begin by looking at comparable roles and salary ranges among our industry. We want to be consistent with, and even a bit above, what those companies are doing. Factors include longevity at the company, overall job performance and the value they bring to the company both directly and indirectly. Attitude and how they vibe with fellow employees are also major factors in determining raises. ” ~ Justin Lefkovitch, Mirrored Media

2. Consider the Value They Bring

“The biggest asset we look for is the amount of value they provide for the company. This is more than just being busy or helping the business profit more. It’s about building the long-term relationships with clients that help the company thrive and grow. We look at several other things, such as length of time in the company, commitment to doing their best, ambition to grow and much more.” ~ John Hall, Calendar

3. Look at Consistency

“Over time, employees change. They tend to be excited at first, but in time they become bored and lack consistency. For me, a raise should be based on the person’s performance and how consistent they are over time. Also looking at their attendance, performance, sales, attitude and even growth, you will know whether an employee deserves a raise based on how passionate and hardworking they are over the years.” ~ Daisy Jing, Banish

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

4. Analyze Their Quarterly Reviews

“We determine pay raises for our employees by compiling their quarterly reviews from the year and looking at their performance. Our reviews are done on a point basis. The number of points an employee receives at the end of the year determines their raise. I like this strategy because it means that employees are getting raises that align with their performance within the company.” ~ John Brackett, Smash Balloon LLC

5. Create Specific Assessment Metrics

“The best method for determining pay raises is to create a metric for what matters to your company. For example, for our fulfillment employees, what matters are the following: 1) accuracy, 2) output and 3) attendance. So, I create a specific metric for each of these categories and evaluate quarterly. Creating a metric is key because feelings are not involved, and there is no unfair treatment.” ~ Shu Saito, SpiroPure

6. Consider Their Overall Performance

“We look at the employee’s holistic performance, as well as loyalty and tenure, to determine pay raises. The longer an employee stays with us, we know they value the organization and team. So we do take into consideration how long they’ve been a part of our team when it comes to determining pay increases and other benefits.” ~ Kristin Kimberly Marquet, Marquet Media, LLC

7. Look at Seniority and Work Quality

“Pay raises are important for everyone on your team. We use a system that looks at the seniority of the employee and the quality of their work. I like this strategy because it’s easy to calculate, and it’s fair to the employees. Dedication and hard work should be rewarded, and our strategy allows us to reward our team for both.” ~ Chris Christoff, MonsterInsights

8. Run Periodic Wage Assessments

“Periodic wage assessments and increases can be a powerful extrinsic motivator for individual employee morale. You want to plan it out so that no more than a year will pass before an evaluation for a wage increase happens. The more often, the better. You should leave yourself room to compensate for exceptional performance within a year.” ~ Reuben Yonatan, SaasList

9. Measure Objectively and Subjectively

“Create performance reviews that have both objective and subjective sections. The objective part is for measurable metrics, and the subjective section is for things like teamwork and collaboration. An overall score can then be determined, and a pay raise is based on that number. This is preferred because it gives some organization and structure to the process.” ~ Andrew Schrage, Money Crashers Personal Finance

READ MORE:

Image: Depositphotos.com




Source link

15 Employee Time Tracking Tips

15 Employee Time Tracking Tips


With more and more employees working remotely, time tracking is becoming more important than ever. It can reduce labor costs for management. And it increases worker engagement for workers. The best time tracking software can even help a small business meet compliance requirements.



Employee Time Tracking Best Practices

Looking for the best time tracking product or app doesn’t need to be overwhelming or confusing. There are best practices for specific industries. Like healthcare and businesses that have hourly employees. There are other considerations too. For example, the one you choose should offer time tracking data and adhere to policies like union rules.

Read about time tracking best practices and tips below.

1. Offer Incentives

Willie Greer is the founder of The Product Analyst. He says providing incentives to workers is a good starting point. It’s a great way to get employees to track time.

“Consider staff members who follow rules and thrive on standards,” he writes.

Small gifts work. So does an extra day off from work.

2. Get Customized

You’ll get a wealth of tracking data when you pick a solution. Make sure you can customize the tool and keep track of the info you need to.

“Some specific tasks need to have a customizable time tracking option,” writes Nikolina Jeric, founder of 2Date4Love.com. “it’s important to see if a software can be adjusted to fit specific business needs.”

3. Keep Time Tracking Simple

If you’re tracking time but taking up too much of it, the purpose gets defeated. Keeping things simple is the way to go. For example, setting up project management and task categories makes it easier for employees to track time.

4. Look For Integration

“Go for a solution that offers payroll integration, and offline tracking,” writes Thierry Tremblay , CEO & Founder of Kohezion. “It should have comprehensive reporting including costs & ROI and support multiple currencies.”

5. Use Dedicated Staff

Only let certain people in your company create tasks and projects and assign them.

“If everyone starts to do it, it will become a mess,” writes Tremblay. “Your reports will not give you a clear overview of the data.”

6. Don’t Go Overboard

Tracking time at your business is important. However, you don’t need to go overboard. For example, not every email you send to a client needs to be added. However, salespeople meeting with clients need to track their time.

Here’s a hint. Generally, you should be adding items that take longer than 15 minutes. Just remember that too much detail can muddle the results.

7. Pick A Good Interface

See below for some good questions to ask.

“Is the app convenient to use? Does it give you the deliverables you need in a format that’s convenient to you? Make sure the interfaces of the actual tracker and the output it gives you are both handy,” suggests Trond Nyland, Founder & CEO of Mattress Review.

8. Guess The Time When You Need To

A lot of time tracking options come with a timer option. Employees and managers can forget to switch it on or off. When that happens, encourage your staff to accurately guess at the time they’ve missed.

9. Use Reminders

Allan Borch is a growth hacker and founder of DotcomDollar. He has some good suggestions about tracking time efficiently.

“Use reminders and alerts to poke you in case you forget to track your time,” he writes.

10. Get Into A Routine

Borch also says details and routines matter: “Track time daily and always indicate what task is being tracked.”

11. Include Non-Billables

Getting an accurate picture of how much of project costs include non-billables. That’s why it’s good to include items like conversations and brainstorming sessions. You can’t always add these to an invoice. But they are invaluable when you see patterns and need to calculate your hourly rate.

12. File Your Time Correctly

Finally, categorizing items properly makes a big difference in your work.

Membuat Link Pengertian HTML

“Always tie the task you work on with the projects they belong to,” Borch writes.

13. Learn from Time Tracking Data

Charlie Worrall is a Digital Marketing Executive at Imaginaire Digital. He says you can learn big business lessons from the data you gather.

“Tracking time shouldn’t always be about how fast your employees can work,” he says. “It should be something to learn from. If employees get stuck at a certain point in a process, there may be something wrong with it. And there may be a way to reduce time through automation and upgrades.”

14. Tie Time Tracking to Estimates

Software can help you keep track of employees’ performance. You can also use it to create better estimates for future projects. You can use the data collected to set a price that’s competitive. Or, you can look for places to cut back on costs before you put together an estimate.

15. Have a Plan

Keeping things simple is important. That applies whether you’re using software or something like a spreadsheet to track time. A little pre-planning is a good idea. For example, you should decide whether you’re going to track projects or individual employees at your work.

Understanding what you want to do will help you pick the right product.

What are the benefits of employee time tracking?

Dean Mathews is the founder and CEO of OnTheClock. He supplied some thoughts on the bonuses of time tracking.

“For starters, tracking staff time is required by law,” he writes. “The Department of Labor (DOL) states that all hourly employee time must be tracked.”

He also says collecting time tracking data provides business insights. It reduces payroll disputes by eliminating errors and generally saves time. Mathews says time tracking benefits workers too.

“Employees benefit from seeing their hours worked, time off requests/balances, and their planned work schedules,” he says.

He adds a final point on how to present the idea you want to track their time to staff: “Time tracking should be mutually beneficial to the employer and the employee. If not, it will only be seen as a “big brother” tactic by employees.”

What is the best employee time tracking app?

Aside from OnTheClock, there are many employee time tracking apps to choose from. These are designed to help work go more smoothly from both the staff and employers’ perspectives.

  • TSheets. This option offers interactive real-time reports. One of the other big bonuses is the fact you can connect payroll software to this product. There is even a mobile app you can use to alert employees about when to clock in and out.
  • Tick is a simple solution. Small businesses need to pick a task or project and just click a button to start time tracking. Get a free 30 day trial with this product. There’s even a  Tick Apple Watch App for busy entrepreneurs.
  • Everhour offers a list of integrations that small businesses would find helpful. For example, this product integrates with Slack. It offers the ability to keep an eye on your budgets in real-time

For even more, read: Time and Expense Tracking Apps: 27 Solutions

How do I choose a time tracking solution?

Mathews says a checklist defining your goals when you’re looking at tracking time is the first step. He outlines a few areas to consider: “What are your pain points, the problems you want to solve and what are you looking to accomplish?”

He suggests you look for the following features when you’re looking to track time at your business.

  • Employees must be able to clock in and out
  • Support for paid time off (PTO) and staff requests for PTO
  • Phone apps
  • Employee scheduling
  • Location monitoring and controls for mobile employees (GPS, geo-fencing, etc.)
  • Integration with a payroll provider
  • Online vs on-premise options
  • Job and project costing
  • Salaried employee support
  • Alerts and notifications to assist in managing your business
  • Reporting features

Shortlisting potential time tracking systems is next, according to Mathews. He supplies a few tips:

“Google search terms like ‘employee time clock‘ or ‘time clock’,” he writes. “Be inventive so you get a comprehensive list of potential options. Ask your employees and fellow business owners for recommendations on what they have used before.”

Finally, you need to demo the time tracking system.

Most time tracking systems have a free trial period. Use the different features, add employees, and view reports.

“Make sure you send in a few support requests to verify you’ll get answers to any questions,” Mathews says. Get feedback from your team before making a decision.

For more tips, read: How to Choose the Best Time Tracking Software

Image: Depositphotos.com




Source link

You cannot copy content of this page
error: Content is protected !!