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Business

Plymouth – A Great Place to Explore

If you aren’t from these parts, the West Country holds a mystical charm that never ceases to attract tourists from all over the world, and even the locals are smitten by this coastal city that is packed full of attractions. Plymouth Hoe is a grassy headland that Sir Francis Drake one looked out at the Spanish fleet, and there is a maritime museum in remembrance of the many who perished in the two world wars.

A strong history

Plymouth has always been a naval port, and was very much the centre of the industrial revolution. The port was the departing point for the Pilgrim Fathers who made that epic journey to the New World, and in later years was the main port for Atlantic crossings.

The healthy outdoors

The Plymouth lifestyle is relaxed and very much outdoors, with the mild southern climate and the coastal breeze, making it a healthy place to be. There are many fine restaurants and antique shopping areas on the waterfront, and if you are interested in naval history, Plymouth is the place for you. The Barbican is a great area to spend some time, with cobbled streets lined with Tudor buildings. This is the place where the Pilgrim Fathers set sail for America, and you can still see the original passenger list on the side of the nearby Island House.

Plymouth Gin Distillery

This establishment has been producing gin since 1793, making it the oldest spirit distillery in the world. There are tours for those who are interested in how gin is produced, and with some tasting sessions, one can enjoy the finest gin before heading off to the cocktail lounge for a gin and tonic.

Asian cuisine

If you like Thai and Chinese food, why not take a stroll down Sutton Harbour, where street vendors sell their wares. The variety includes mix and match curries and lots of vegetarian dishes.

The Theatre Royal

This establishment is a leading promoter of arts in the south west and regularly hosts ballet and plays performed by noted actors and actresses. Definitely a place for the art lovers, and with many classy restaurants nearby, one can really make an evening of it.

The National Marine Aquarium

This is located near the Barbican, and houses more than 400 marine species, making it the largest aquarium in the UK. There are four main areas of the aquarium that cover UK marine life, and with the Blue Planet, you can experience the Great Barrier Reef. The aquarium is a great place for children to learn about marine life and also conservation, and there are daily guided tours.

Listed buildings

Plymouth has a concentrated area full of listed buildings, making it ideal for lovers of fine architecture. Walking down the grand streets is like going back in time, and with the friendly locals, the experience of Plymouth is one not to be missed. Whether you come for a day, or stay for a week, there is so much to do, you’ll never be bored.

Categories
Finance

Top Tips For St. Louis Tax Preparation

For a majority of people income tax filing is a time filled with stress, anger and fear. This is because of the multiple calculations that must be done and the forms that must be completed within a stipulated period. Failure to complete tax filing requirements often leads to penalties that are quite unpleasant, which is why it is wise to learn the top tips for St Louis tax preparation.

Do some research

Tax laws and regulations change frequently and this is why you need to carry out some research beforehand. This will help guard you from making common mistakes that may lead to late filing. Government agencies are usually quick to update their online portals with regards to any changes. Reading through these portals can be a good way to get on top of things quickly. If necessary, get in touch with an income tax expert and find out if there is anything you need to know before starting the process.

Gather income and expense information

Employees and employers have certain forms that are filled at certain points of the year. These forms are used to make filing much easier. Be sure to create a simple file for organizing such information that is needed for accurate tax filing. Without these documents, you may end up making serious errors and that may lead to further complications. Some of the most important things to consider here include income statements, expenses, business and personal information.

Review documents from previous years

In most cases the changes from one tax year to the next are almost insignificant. This is why it may be a good idea to review forms or any documents from the past year. The information obtained from such documents can help you submit accurate forms. Such info helps you cut down on the amount of time and money you would otherwise spend.

Outsource tax calculations and filing

For most people it is obvious that tax filing is time consuming and mentally draining. However, few people realize that tax calculations and filing can be outsourced. Quite a number of companies have software and dedicated staff that can quickly compile records and information necessary for successful tax filing. The companies offer their services at reasonable fees. These companies are able to handle both individual and business tax filing.

File your taxes early

A common mistake people make is to wait until the last minute before filing their taxes. This may lead to confusion and stress. Filing your taxes early has a number of benefits with the most obvious being that you will be able to receive your refunds earlier and can easily invest it in something else. Another benefit is that it gives your employer ample time to carry out their own filing.

Set the groundwork for next year

Immediately after filing your taxes try and make changes that can help reduce general liability for the next year. Preparing early means you will have less to do when filing for the next year begins.

Categories
Insurance

The Main Facts You should Remember if You’ve had a Burn Injury in the Workplace

Burns happen more often than we realise – in fact, often they go unreported or underestimated and the true consequences are only felt when it’s too late to act. Burns are not only caused by hot surfaces, but are often a result of electrical mishaps (short-circuits, electrocution), friction (road accidents or recurring movement), chemicals, or even very cold surfaces. It’s important that the burns are recognised and recorded immediately, so legal liability can be established right away. If you have ever been a victim of a burn in the workplace, you have certain rights, after all. Here are the main facts you should remember if you’ve had a burn injury in the workplace.

Common accidents

Although different workplaces offer and present different risks, factory workers or employees that are confronted with dangerous chemicals or electrical works (such as in workshops or laboratories) are usually at a higher degree of risk. Following is a short list of common accidents:

  • Workplace fires – due to heat sources, chemicals, or electrical faults
  • Electrical burns
  • Inhalation of toxic fumes resulting in the burning of lungs and other parts of the body
  • Contact with hot machinery
  • Thermal burns using extremely hot or extremely cold equipment and tools
  • Radiation

The effects of the incident

The effects are not just a matter of immediate pain and suffering to the victim – they also result in consequences often unforeseen. Here’s a short list:

  • Burns can lead to infections that affect other parts of the body
  • Burns can lead to permanent disfigurement
  • Burns can lead to severe damage to the skin and nerves
  • Burns can lead to long-lasting emotional and psychological suffering

What you can do

That the injury happens is bad enough, but it’s important you take the correct steps immediately:

  • Immediately report the incident and the burn
  • Immediately seek medical advice and treatment
  • Obtain evidence in the form of reports, photographs, etc, of the burns and the circumstances
  • Record the names of witnesses and other information that help you establish the facts
  • Keep track of any expenses incurred

Don’t forget that the compensation for burns at work you may have right to is not only measured in harm caused physically (medically) or psychologically (or emotionally). Those are the kind of measurements that are difficult to judge and quantify. However, you should keep a list of all expenses you incur due to the injury (this includes extra needs for transportation, medicine, loss of work, loss of vacation, and so on) – these kind of financial issues are much easier to calculate and should be recorded meticulously. If ever you have been a victim, never hesitate. Keep accurate records and make sure you seek legal advice to claim compensation.

Categories
Business

The Basics on Serviced Offices and How They can Benefit Your Business

If you’re thinking of setting up your own business but are wondering how to go about setting up an office, then there’s good news. First of all, congratulations on your decision – you are about to embark on an exciting adventure that will bring much personal satisfaction and hopefully much prosperity to you and your family. Secondly, the good news is this: there are solutions (for both start-ups and more experienced entrepreneurs) that can help businesses reach new heights. They’re called serviced offices. They’re nothing new, but they are only now becoming more popular since the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. For all entrepreneurs and businesspeople, here are the basics on serviced offices and how they can benefit your business.

Commit only to what you need

It’s great because it’s flexible. When your business is still crawling and trying to stand up, or your enterprise is in the stage of expansion, it’s important to cut costs and not to commit to what you will never need. By taking advantage of the serviced office space such as serviced offices in Swindon, the entrepreneur is able to commit to a contract for shorter periods of time, decide what services they want and how often it will be used. You have perfect control over your overhead.

Test new markets

The serviced office space is perfect for those who wish to establish themselves temporarily to test new markets – it offers all the comforts of having a working space to do business in without having to install or remove furniture and equipment. Testing new markets has never been easier.

Get the perks

And the perks are plentiful, indeed. Not only does the tenant receive almost all the required office materials, there is also a staff on stand-by in case of technical problems, and the office is often managed with a reception area to welcome your visitors.

Managed with one fee

If there’s anything an ambitious entrepreneur appreciates, it’s an easily predicted payroll and cash flow. Serviced office space rental takes care of it in one simple fee.

Still not convinced? Consider this: it can take a lot of effort to buy and install all the equipment you need when you establish your office for the first time – and that can be a hassle, especially when you know that for the first month there will be a lot of downtime whilst installation is taking place. This downtime is not only expensive and a waste of resource; it’s completely unnecessary, and with serviced offices this downtime simply doesn’t exist. You’ve got an office with everything you need, for as long as you need it – from the very start. So take a look around, and start dreaming bigger. The perfect place is out there.

Categories
Finance

Don’t Offer Finance To Clients Without Checking Their Company Credit Report

Working in the finance industry is full of difficulties and challenges that you need to overcome if you’re going to ensure your company is successful. For starters, you face the same major challenges that all companies face, such as attracting new customers through effective marketing tactics, ensuring your product/service is a cut above the rest, and offering a high-level of customer service so that your customers can feel confident that you have their best interests at heart.

However, as a business in the financial sector, you also face a set of unique obstacles that other industries don’t necessarily have to deal with. You’ll no doubt be selling some – if not all – of your services on a credit basis, and that means you could lose money if your customers fail to pay you back for whatever reason.

Let’s face it, even companies that have been established for decades can fail because new companies are created on a constant basis. A business that was highly profitable 10 years ago may currently be struggling to pay its bills. How can you be sure that your clients will be able to continually meet the payments that you desperately need in order to keep your business afloat?

The truth is, nobody is capable of accurately predicting the future. However, company credit reports can give you a detailed insight into a company’s capabilities with regards to paying their debts, and that will go a long way in helping you decide whether you can trust a client with credit or not.

If you’re wondering how to get a business credit report, it’s as simple as finding a specialist credit check company that can access data from third-party sources to give you an accurate overview of a company’s creditworthiness. There are a number of companies that specialise in this service, and you can be assured of accuracy in the reports due to the fact that they are completely unbiased.

What can I Find in a Credit Report?

At this point, you might be wondering what sort of information a credit report can offer. Here is a brief list of some of the key information you’ll find in a credit report.

  • Payment habits – A credit report will give you an insight into the payment habits of the client in question, meaning you’ll be able to gauge whether they always pay on time or constantly default.
  • Bankruptcies – In certain situations, a company doesn’t have to fail due to filing for bankruptcy, but you might not want to offer said company finance if they’ve almost gone under before.
  • Balances outstanding – You might not feel comfortable lending to a company that already has a number of debts to pay off, though it’s probably a good idea to check this against payment habits as a large number of balances outstanding doesn’t necessarily mean the company is unable to meet the payments.

In summary, a company credit report will give you a detailed analysis of a company’s creditworthiness as well as an overall credit rating, helping you to protect your profits and secure the future of your business.

Categories
Marketing

How to Design a Custom Label That Makes an Impact

It is crucial that your label gets your product off the shelves. If your labelling is not having that effect, you need to change it – simple as that. When you are designing a custom label or having labels designed for you by a custom printing company, you need to pay careful attention to the impact they are creating. The first thing the label needs to do is be noticed. Then your label can give your customers information or inspire them further. There’s a lot of pressure on label design but don’t panic – here are some simple ways you can improve your label design to attract all the attention you need for your product.

Be Clear, Don’t Confuse

Don’t make people work for it – the labelling on a packet or product should clearly show what the product is, and what it is for. Your prospective customers will not have time to guess and work out who you are and what your product is when they see it on the shelf. Make sure that the label clearly states what the product is, and answers any objections to buying upfront.

Be Creative

But don’t think that your labels have to be purely informative and plain. You cannot create a label that is simply black and white text as no one will take any notice of it. You need some good artwork on your label. If you cannot manage this yourself, outsource the job to a professional. There are many ways to design a label, depending on your product and the style of your company, says www.labeller.co.uk – be creative and make an attractive label that really attracts attention.

Create a Brand Message

The labels you use on your products send a clear message about the type of brand you are selling and what you offer. And make sure that each product in your brand, though different, is clearly “you”. Also send a clear message about the product and show how the item will make life better for the buyer.

Use Space Wisely

When looking at how to design a successful label, understand that you will have lots of information to put on the label and not much space for it all. A modern labelling machine helps you fit as much as possible without losing quality, but you should be wary of trying to squash too much into the area so that no one can read the information, or that the label looks cluttered and confusing. Put the necessary items on first and then see what you have left to play with.

Categories
Business

When is an Expense not an Expense

Introduction:

As a small business owner it is sometimes difficult to know when an expense incurred doing business is tax deductible. The rules in the UK are complicated and there is not always a clear-cut answer.

Those of us who own small businesses have many issues to worry about not least the issue of tax liabilities and connected with that the whole issue of expenses. Just what is a justifiable business expense? And if you work from home, as so many small business owners now do, then where do household expenses become business expenses? How do you know when a line has been crossed either way? It is important to understand this area particularly if you have just started up a new business or if your small business has grown rapidly and you now need some good business advice to help you along the road to success.

One important factor to consider is your own personal lifestyle. For instance if you live in a large house with a large, separate office then what would be considered reasonable utilities costs for that space may be as high as the total utilities bill for a one-bedroom apartment. So someone else working out of a one-bedroom apartment would not be expected to claim the same amount as this would constitute theirtotal household utilities bills. Company expenses, therefore, have to be for services of the same level that you would normally have in your personal life. If you live in a luxurious home then it would be reasonable for your home office to be furnished to a similar level of quality but to expensively furnish a spare bedroom used as an office in a 2-bedroom terraced house could be seen as extravagant.

Another important factor when assessing the acceptability of expensesis when it comes to entertaining clients or potential clients. If you run a consultancy business where regular face-to-face meetings are required with clients who expect to be entertained with lunch,this does not mean that the cost of the lunch would be an acceptable expense (in the tax man’s eyes, at least). If your client is an executive of a large company used to lunching at Michelin starred restaurants then such a venue would be deemed appropriate as part of the process of securing or retaining that client, but is not a tax-deductible expense for a business (although it might once have been).Expenses are only for those things related to a business need.

When expenses relate to gifts to clients thenthey will only be viewed as an acceptable business expense if they are of a relatively small value, generally less than £250.  Gifts to employees are generally taxable so if you reward your high-flying sales executiveswith a luxurious Caribbean holiday then you should make them aware that this gift is liable to tax.

The type of business also plays a part in determining what is seen as a normal level of remunerationfor certain sectors. Something that would seem extravagant in the IT sector might be very typical in, for instance, investment banking.

So in answer to the question “When is an Expense not an Expense?” for tax purposes, at least, there really is no straightforward answer – it depends very much on the types of business you are in and the cost of a particular expense and, when it comes to working from home, it depends on your own personal lifestyle.

Categories
Security

How Experts Remove Asbestos

For a long time, asbestos was used in many different applications. It is known for its ability to withstand extreme temperatures. For example, ancient Romans discovered the insulating properties of asbestos thousands of years ago. They didn’t have much use for it because it was so rare and expensive. In many homes, its primary use was as a party trick. The wealthy owner of a house would put his hand in a glove made of asbestos and plunge that hand into a fire. When he pulled his hand out unharmed everyone would be amazed. That was about the extent of asbestos use for a long time. Then, larger sources of the material were discovered and it became very affordable. That meant that it became a material commonly used in paint and insulation. Many homes and businesses throughout Australia were lined with asbestos. Later on, it became clear that asbestos can cause disease when inhaled. An entire industry exists to remove asbestos from homes and businesses. If you are at all concerned about asbestos, you need to call the professionals.

Call the Professionals

You should call a professional to inspect your property. Asbestos is a very dangerous material but typically it is only dangerous when inhaled. It has to be fragmented into fibres to be inhaled. If you don’t disturb it, it likely won’t be dangerous. However, if you go looking for asbestos and find it, you might also inadvertently trigger it. An expert will know how to handle the material without upsetting it. There are two basic responses to asbestos: abatement and removal.

An expert will be able to remove a piece of material and test it for asbestos content. Then, he or she will be able to recommend abatement or removal. The decision rests on the activity around the material as well as its friability. If a material is considered very friable, it is more likely to fragment into fibres, which makes it dangerous. For example, a popcorn ceiling or home insulation is considered very friable. Asbestos tiles are not considered very friable. Also, asbestos in your basement or attic will be treated differently than asbestos in your kitchen. If the experts do decide you need asbestos removal services, they will work in a very methodical way.

How It Works

Experts must be very methodical and very careful when they are removing asbestos. Since it can separate into tiny fibres, it can also be carried by the wind. They must be very careful not to upset it because that would just expose a wider range of people to the harmful effects of the material. They have to make sure they keep it away from anything that could endanger others. For that reason, parts of the home or office are often cordoned off with plastic while the experts work. They use HEPA vacuums, high-grade filters, and the very best technology. It is a difficult job but a necessary one. If you need removal services, you should look for well-respected professionals who have a long track record of providing good service. Asbestos is too dangerous to place in the hands of an amateur.

 

Categories
Business

The Evolution of the Electronics Industry

The consumer electronics industry began in the 20th century, and quickly became a multi-billion dollar industry, with gadgets and devices filling our homes, only to be replaced with upgrades a few years later. This massive industry needs to be supplied, and the components business is an industry in itself, with manufacturers and suppliers of parts, all working together to enable the product maker to supply the increasing demand.

Designed for everyday use

Consumer electronics are designed for daily use, and the wide range of devices and gadgets that involve communications, entertainment, and productivity, are all mass produced and sold worldwide.  Laptops, smartphones, digital cameras, and flat screen TV’s are just a few of the devices produced worldwide.

Supplying the manufacturers

One of the leading electronic components and parts suppliers has branches all over the world, and can source genuine parts, even with obsolete components. They have a global component distribution network, and with many years’ working with defence departments, they have a solid reputation in the industry. Very often, a company purchases a number of obsolete devices and need a supply of parts. It can be extremely difficult to locate obsolete components, but fear not, there are companies that specialise in this, and if the part is still available, they will find it.

Transistor explosion

It is estimated that there are more than one billion transistors for every person on the planet, and that isn’t counting the numerous other components that are needed to build these complex machines. With so many different brands and models, the variety of components is staggering, and to source the right parts can require specialised help.

Obsolescence program

Using advanced software to track obsolete components, a specialist supplier would be able to get up to date technical information and end of line details, which helps to source components. With pace of development what it is, the electronics industry is in a constant state of evolvement, and parts are always being modified and upgraded, making it hard to source older components.

An extensive network

An established electronic parts supplier would have a network of fellow distributors, and between them they can source anything, as long as it is still in existence. Many parts are manufactured in the Far East, and an established supplier would have connections who can investigate the origins of the shipment.

Quality assurance

This is essential when purchasing parts from another continent, as counterfeit components are a common problem, and with the supplier’s assurance, you can be confident the components are genuine and of high quality.

The future

The electronics industry is growing exponentially, and there are no signs of that slowing down, which means the logistics of supplying components will become even more complex, and the supporting companies will have to raise their game in order to deal with the ever growing demand for components. Fortunately, systems are in place to track and check on all electrical components, which means devices can be used for longer periods before becoming obsolete and recyclable.

Categories
Business

Take Advantage of Your Office Space

No matter the industry associated with your business, your office space is crucial to effective, professional work from your employees. New studies made in the last decade found that employees worked harder, longer, and more productively in a comfortable office. In fact, an office fitout was all it took to heighten productivity levels across the board.

Whether you just bought an office space and wish to modernise or just want to rearrange your existing space, reputable companies such as Express Fitouts can help you. Modern office designs are sleek, comfortable, and devoid of clutter. In a traditional office, the predominant colours are grey, white, and black. These colours were found to reduce productivity, as they encouraged slow, easily distracted work.

To avoid this, many companies turned to fitout services. When your employees see you invest in a more hospitable work environment, they come to work with more energy. This is as much due to their new surroundings as a renewed sense of loyalty to their employer. In short, a fitout will tell your employees that you care about their well-being and are willing to invest in them. With this feeling, your employees will not only work harder but also encourage others to do so.

Improve Existing Space

Fitout companies such as Express Fitouts can help you make the most of your office space. Often, an office space can quickly be overtaken by filing cabinets, desks, and other clutter. A professional design team will look at your floorplan and find room you never knew existed. In fact, many companies were able to put off relocation for years after a fitout.

Removing unnecessary file cabinets and moving that paperwork onto a digital platform will allow more room for your employees to work. With office fitouts in Melbourne, you can create a new meeting room, break room, or simply add a few more cubicles or desks. With a better design, your office space will finally feel comfortable and be easily navigated.

Upgrade Facilities

New laws and standards are placed on office buildings every decade. A professional company will ensure your office meets these standards. Many businesses use boilers older than a few of their staff members, and still others have had the same, off-white walls for over two decades. Some offices make their employees feel as if they were sent back in time to the twentieth century.

A complete fitout of your office will bring it into the twenty-first century. Any potential clients who walk into your office will experience a pleasant surprise when they see your dedication to comfort and modernity. In fact, a well-designed office can often make the difference between landing a large contract and being forced to look for other clients. After all, first impressions are key.

Many clients form opinions of companies by the style of their office before they even meet with your staff members. To really capture their attention, you cannot allow your office to go without an upgrade. When you do so, be sure to use only reputable fitout companies with the experience to get the job done right.