Tag: Create

How to create an invoice #business #manager

#business invoices

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How to create an invoice

Last Updated: 7 July 2016

If you re providing a tax invoice, there are some things you need to include on it for it to be valid. Ensuring your invoices are correct and complete will help you claim your full tax entitlement.

Custom designed invoices

Voluntary standards apply to the layout of tax invoices to help make it easier for your customers to locate important information. If you plan on creating a custom design for your invoice, it s recommended that you follow these voluntary standards as a guide.

Features such as business logos, paper colour, font style, advertising and other additional content on your invoices are not affected by these voluntary standards.

For regular invoices (not tax invoices), it s recommended that you also use these standards as a guide, though you re not required to do so.

What to include in a tax invoice

Tax invoices must include at least seven pieces of information to be valid. Depending on the value of the invoice and what was sold, there may be more requirements.

For sales of less than $1 000, the seven details are:

  1. The words Tax Invoice must be used preferably at the top.
  2. Your identity as the seller, such as your business name or trading name. Contact details are optional, but recommended.
  3. Your ABN or ACN.
  4. The date the tax invoice was created.
  5. A brief description of the items sold, including quantity and price.
  6. The GST amount (if any) payable. You can display GST for each item in a separate column, or within the total price. If you choose not to display it separately, use a statement such as Total includes GST as this is needed for the next detail.
  7. The extent to which each item sold includes GST. You ll meet this requirement if you either:
    • show the GST amount for each item
    • clearly state that the total price includes GST.

Tax invoices for sales of $1 000 or more also need to show the buyers identity or ABN.

Examples of tax invoices

Check out the ATO s website for examples of tax invoices, including examples for the following scenarios:

How can I send my customers their invoices?

The way that you provide your customers with invoices is generally your decision. Depending on the circumstances, you could choose to send your invoice via post, fax, email, printable web page or provide it face to face.

Regardless of which method you choose, sending the invoice at the time of purchase is recommended to encourage prompt payment. If your customer requests a tax invoice from you, there is a requirement that you provide it within 28 days of the request. Your method of delivery should take this into account.

The method that you choose must also allow for record keeping requirements to be met.

Record keeping requirements

By law, you re required to keep business records for at least 5 years. Whether you keep printed or electronic records is up to you.

You need to keep all invoices for income you ve received and payments you ve made to others. These will help you prepare your Business Activity Statement (BAS), income tax return and other tax obligations.

Check out the ATO s Manage your invoices, payments and records for more information on these requirements.

Dealing with unpaid invoices

There are a number of ways that you can deal with unpaid debts and customer disputes. Read our managing unpaid debt page for helpful tips and resources.

You can also check out our case studies on payment disputes for independent contractors.

What happens if the tax invoice is incorrect?

If the tax invoice you sent is incorrect or incomplete, it s not a valid tax invoice. You ll need to replace it with a complete and correct tax invoice.

If you receive a tax invoice with missing information, you can still treat it as a valid tax invoice if you re able to find the information within other documents the supplier has given you. Alternatively, ask for a new one with the correct information.

Tips for invoicing

By following some simple tips, you can help boost your cash flow and reduce the risk of unpaid invoices. Try the following when sending your next invoice:

  • Include your payment terms on the invoice and ensure your customer is aware of them. For example, requiring payment to be made within 30 days of receiving a correct, valid tax invoice.
  • Be timely and predictable. Being prompt when sending your tax invoice ensures that you re paid as soon as possible. If you need to send invoices on a regular basis, try sending them at the same time of day so that your customer knows when to expect them.
  • Offer a variety of payment options and state these on your invoice.
  • Try sending your invoices via email. It can decrease the chance of your invoice being lost in the mail and help encourage a prompt payment.
  • Be detailed in your item description field. Being detailed and providing a full account of the product or service you provided can help reduce the chance of a dispute.

What to do.

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Create Effective and Successful Business Presentations #own #business #ideas

#business presentation

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10 Tips for Creating Successful Business Presentations

By Wendy Russell. Presentation Software Expert

Business is all about selling — a product, topic or concept. When making a business presentation, the most important thing is to know your material. If you do not know everything about what you are selling, it is not likely that the audience will be buying.

Keep your audience focused and interested. Making effective business presentations takes practice, but with a few tips up your sleeve, you are ready to take on the challenge.

1. Use Key Phrases About Your Topic

Jacobs Stock Photography/Stockbyte/Getty Images Note – These business presentation tips refer to PowerPoint (any version) slides. but all of these tips in general, can be applied to any presentation.

Seasoned presenters use key phrases and include only essential information. Choose only the top three or four points about your topic and make them consistently throughout the delivery. Simplify and limit the number of words on each screen. Try not to use more than three bullets per slide. The surrounding space will make it easier to read.

Continue Reading Below

2. Slide Layout is Important

Make your slides easy to follow. Put the title at the top of the slide where your audience expects to find it. Phrases should read left to right and top to bottom. Keep important information near the top of the slide. Often the bottom portions of slides cannot be seen from the back rows because heads are in the way.

3. Limit Punctuation and Avoid All Capital Letters

Punctuation can needlessly clutter the slide and the use of all caps makes statements more difficult to read and is like SHOUTING at your audience.

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4. Avoid Fancy Fonts

Choose a font that is simple and easy to read such as Arial, Times New Roman or Verdana. Avoid script type fonts as they are hard to read on screen. Use, at most, two different fonts – perhaps one for headings and another for content. Keep all fonts large enough (at least 24 pt and preferably 30 pt) so that people at the back of the room will be able to easily read what is on the screen.

  • Dark text on a light background is best, but avoid white backgrounds — tone it down by using beige or another light color that will be easy on the eyes. Dark backgrounds are effective to show off company colors or if you just want to dazzle the crowd. In that case, be sure to make text a light color for easy reading.
  • Patterned or textured backgrounds can reduce readability of text.
  • Keep your color scheme consistent throughout your presentation.

More

6. Use Slide Designs Effectively

When using a design theme (PowerPoint 2007) or design template (earlier versions of PowerPoint), choose one that is appropriate for the audience. A clean, straightforward layout is best if you are presenting to business clientele. Select one that is full of color and contains a variety of shapes if your presentation is aimed at young children.

7. Limit the Number Of Slides

Keeping the number of slides to a minimum, ensures that the presentation will not become too long and drawn out. It also avoids the problem of continually changing slides during the presentation that can be a distraction to your audience. On average, one slide per minute is about right.

8. Use Photos, Charts and Graphs

Combining photos, charts and graphs and even embedding digitized videos with text, will add variety and keep your audience interested in the presentation. Avoid having text only slides.

9. Avoid Excessive Use of Slide Transitions and Animations

While transitions and animations can heighten your audience’s interest in the presentation, too much of a good thing can distract them from what you are saying. Remember, the slide show is meant to be a visual aid, not the focus of the presentation.

Keep animations consistent in the presentation by using animation schemes and apply the same transition throughout the presentation.

10. Make Sure Your Presentation Can Run On Any Computer

Use PowerPoint s Package for CD (PowerPoint 2007 and 2003 ) or Pack and Go (PowerPoint 2000 and before) feature when burning your presentation onto a CD. In addition to your presentation, a copy of Microsoft’s PowerPoint Viewer is added to the CD to run PowerPoint presentations on computers that don t have PowerPoint installed.





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E-Business (e Business) – Definitions and Ways to Create it Better #small #business #financing

#e business

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e-Business

There are many definitions of e-business, for example we can defines e-business as any net business activity that transforms internal and external relationships to create value and exploit market opportunities driven by new rules of the connected economy. actually the word e means electronic so it means business via electronic channels as website, social networks and emails. Therefore e-commerce is result of e business.

e-Business Definition

First of all, look at the word e-business, it includes from two words 1- e 2- business so we can define it electronic business however, it is more than an absolute state of a company and it targets the market opportunities of conducting business under new electronic channels. which revolve around the Internet.

e-business communications in markets

e Business Range

This is an acknowledgement that e business comes in many forms and can be implemented to a very small or a large degree. It is also an acknowledgement that the Internet is an essential component of an e-business strategy. Laudon and Laudon s (2002) definition of e-business, as the use of the Internet and other digital technology for organizational communication, coordination and the management of the firm, encompasses these different adaptations. In the broadest possible terms, however, e-business is an electronic way of doing business. The fact that the value proposition of e-business includes the creation of new market opportunities through electronic channels, should not be ignored as these electronically channeled market opportunities enable companies to lower transaction costs, reduce delivery times, improve customer services, and add convenience.

This site is concerned with the implementation of e-business in the construction industry. In this context, e-business is defined broadly as the conduct of construction business by electronic means.

This fits with broad definitions of the term e-commerce exemplified by the definitions below:

  • The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD): The electronic exchange of information that support and govern commercial activities including organizational management, commercial management, commercial negotiations and contracts, legal and regulatory frameworks, financial settlement arrangements and taxation (OECD,1999).
  • Learnthat. e-Commerce is not just about buying and selling online, but also includes all forms of business activities that are conducted over the Internet (e.g. the business-to-business flow of information between companies or within a company, communication between businesses, online advertising, etc.).
  • Kalakota and Whinston: e-Commerce at its grass root level can be described as an electronic method of doing business, typically over the Internet. Broadly defined, however, eCommerce is a modern business methodology that addresses the needs of organizations, merchants and consumers to cut costs while improving the quality of goods and services, and increasing the speed of service delivery .

Thus, the term, e-business, as used in this site should not be considered synonymous with narrow definitions of e-commerce as the process of buying and selling goods and services online.

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How to Create a Facebook Business Page in 5 Simple Steps Tutorial #partnership #business

#business pages

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How to Create a Facebook Business Page in 5 Simple Steps [Tutorial]

It’s no longer a “good idea” for most businesses to be on Facebook. With 829 million people actively using Facebook every day, it’s become a go-to component of almost any inbound marketing strategy.

Thing is, as more and more Facebook features change, so does the process of setting up a Page.

Don’t waste another day poking around aimlessly on Facebook, trying to figure out what the heck to do to get your Facebook Page up and running like a social networking pro.

The following presentation provides a visual tutorial to help you get your Page up in no time (you can also read the transcription below). Over 600,000 have found this tutorial helpful, hopefully it proves beneficial for you or a marketer you know, too.

How To Create a Facebook Business Page

Step 1: Choose a Classification.

To begin, navigate to https://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php . This page will showcase six different classifications to choose from:

  1. Local Business or Place
  2. Company, Organization, or Institution
  3. Brand or Product
  4. Artist, Band, or Public Figure
  5. Entertainment
  6. Cause or Community

Each of these classifications provides more relevant fields for your desired Page.

For this tutorial, we’ll select the second option: company, organization, or institution. After selecting our desired classification, we’ll be asked for an official name for our Business Page. I recommend carefully selecting your name. Although Facebook allows you to change your name and URL once. it’s a difficult and tedious process.

Step 2: Complete Basic Information.

Facebook should automatically walk you through the following four basic sections to complete the fundamental aspects of your Page.

Finish “About” Section

The “about” section will serve as the main 2-3 sentence description for your company. It will be on your main page, so make it descriptive but succinct. Be sure to include a link to your company website as well. Also ensure that this information differentiates your brand, making your page even more appealing to potential followers.

This is also where you can select your unique domain (that, as mentioned above, can only be changed once). For example, the Sidekick by HubSpot Facebook Page employs the URL facebook.com/getsidekick.

Upload Profile Picture

Next you’ll be asked to upload a picture. This will serve as the main visual icon of your page, appearing in search results and alongside any comments you publish. While any perfectly square image will work, the recommended size is 180 x 180 pixels.

Add to Favorites

Every individual Facebook user has a vertical navigation bar to the left of their News Feed. You can add your Business Page as a “Favorite” item here — similar to bookmarking a web page in your web browser — for easy access.

Reach More People

Facebook will prompt you to create an advertisement to draw attention to your Page. Whether employing paid tactics is a part of your strategy or not, I recommend avoiding starting any ads at this stage — there’s no compelling content on the Page yet that would convince them to ultimately “Like” your page.

Step 3: Understand the Admin Panel.

The basic skeleton of your Business Page is now live. Facebook will ask if you’d like to “Like” your Page. Again, I recommend avoid doing so at the moment. This activity will appear in News Feeds of those you’re connected to personally to on Facebook. Without any content on the Page, we want to save that organic Timeline story for when you’re really ready for people to view the Page.

In the top navigation, you’ll see an option for “Settings.” Click that. Along the left side, a vertical navigation bar with different sections should appear. We’ll focus on three core ones now:

  • Page Info: This is where you can add additional details about your business. This section will also unveil different fields based on the classification you chose in Step 1.
  • Notifications. This section allows you to customize when and how you’d like to receive Page alerts. Set a frequency that fits your social media marketing schedule.
  • Page Roles. Whether or not you’ll be the main manager of the Page, there may be others at your organization who need access to your Facebook Page. Here, you can invite other colleagues to make changes to your Pages. Some common use cases here include:
    • A public relations manager who needs to respond to any delicate questions.
    • A support representative who can assist those asking technical questions.
    • A designer tasked with uploading new photo creative to the Page.

Step 4: Populate Page With Content.

Now it’s time to actually publish content to your Page and then invite users to be a part of your growing community. Let’s start with the basic content needed to get your Page kicking.

Posts

The rest of your Page will populate over time as you publish more updates. Facebook currently provides six different posting options:

  1. Plain text status
  2. Photo with caption
  3. Link with caption
  4. Video with caption
  5. Event page
  6. Location check-in

When posting on your page, just be sure to use a variety of content. What images would your audience like to see? What stats would they like to read? What links would they like to click? You can also click the little grey arrow in the top-right corner of each post and then click “Pin to Top” to move one of your posts to the top of your Page’s Timeline for seven days. Use this feature for product announcements, business anniversaries, and other major events pertinent to your brand.

If you want to dive deeper into Facebook posting best practices, check out this blog post.

Cover Photo

This is the large, horizontal image that spans the top of your Facebook Page. Typically, this is a branded image to help attract people to your Page. The official photo dimensions are 851 x 315 pixels. To help you create these cover photos, we have free PowerPoint templates here pre-sized for the right dimensions.

Now that there’s content on the Page, we can start strategically inviting users to Like it. I recommend inviting users in the following cadence:

  • First, invite colleagues to Like your page and its content to build some initial activity.
  • Second, invite supporters in your network. Encourage them to engage.
  • Third, invite customers. With some activity now on the Page, they’ll be more interested.

With content published and users invited, you can go to the “Activity” tab in your Page’s top navigation to monitor how people are engaging with your Page and content.

Step 5: Measure Your Growth.

Finally, we need to measure our efforts to ensure we’re making valuable marketing decisions on Facebook. Fortunately, Facebook has embedded in some decently helpful metrics for us to take advantage of. Simply click the “Insights” option in the top navigation to see the following:

  • Overview. This tab shows a 7-day snapshot of your metrics such as Page Likes, post reach, and overall engagement.
  • Likes. This tab shows your overall fan growth and losses. If you’re employing paid efforts, you’ll be able to see the breakdown of paid versus organic growth.
  • Reach. This tab highlights the raw number of people your Page is reaching every day. If you notice spikes on a specific day, try cross-checking what you posted that day to see if you can replicate that reach.
  • Visits. This tab indicates where on Facebook your viewers are coming from. You can see the difference in visits on Facebook Timelines, your information tab, reviews, and others.

And if you really want to spend time perfecting your Facebook content strategy, watch this brief tutorial on how to analyze exactly that .

And voila! You have a Facebook business page. Now go post interesting content and amass a loyal base of fans!

Want to see how HubSpot uses Facebook? Like our Facebook Page here .

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in 2010, and it’s since been completely updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.





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How to Create a Business Development Strategy #small #business #cards

#business development plan

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How to Create a Business Development Strategy

The Business Development Strategy is used to underpin your main Business Plan and essentially it sets out a standard approach for developing new opportunities, either from within existing accounts or by proactively targeting brand new potential accounts and then working to close them.

This document highlights the key issues you should consider prior to compiling your own plan and will hopefully guide you logically through a proven framework.

The key word is Strategy. because you are creating a workable and achievable set of objectives in order to exceed your annual target.

Your Starting Point :

The key words are Who? What? Where? When? Which? Why? How?

Who are you going to target?

What do you want to sell them?

Where are they located?

When will you approach them?

Which are the appropriate target personnel?

Why would they want to meet with you?

How will you reach them?

If you have conducted regular account reviews with your key accounts during the previous twelve months, you should be aware of any new opportunities that will surface during the next twelve months. You will also, when assessing what percentage of your annual target usually comes from existing accounts, need to review data over the last two or three years. (It is likely that you can apply Pareto i.e. 80% of your business will probably come from existing accounts and in fact 80% of your total revenue will come from just 20% of your customers/clients)

You will be left with a balance (i.e. 20% of my business next year will come from new opportunities) therefore you can then begin to allocate your selling time accordingly.

Next: Ideal Customer Profiling





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Create Your Business Email Address #small #business #solutions

#business email address

#

30 day free trial, then 4,99 /month* 9,98 /month* 14,97 /month* 19,96 /month* 14,95 /month* 24,90 /month* 49,75 /month*

  • NEW: 50 GB storage space per e-mail address
  • Completely ad-free
  • Real-time ActiveSync data synchronisation
  • NEW: Online document management functionality
  • Collaborative team use: Calendar + Events + Contacts + Tasks
  • E-mail POP/IMAP retrieval
  • Maximum security for your communication
  • 2 GB of online storage for saving documents
  • 2 GB Team Drive with permission management for greater teamwork. Expandable up to 2 TB!
  • Alias functionality allows for up to five different addresses per user.

show additional features show additional features hide additional features Select

1 1 Mail Basic

30 day free trial, then 1,99 /month* 0,99 /month*

  • 2 GB storage space per e-mail address
  • Completely ad-free
  • E-mail POP/IMAP retrieval
  • 2 GB of online storage for saving documents

Select

Multiple advantages with 1 1 Mail

Your own custom e-mail domain

Make your image consistent – from your business cards to your company website.

Mailboxes for employees

Combine technology and productivity, and choose from 2 GB or 50 GB of storage.

Real-time synchronisation

Whether you’re on the go or in the office, and whatever device you’re using, your e-mails, appointments, tasks and contacts are automatically updated.

Efficient teamwork

Now your whole team can collaborate on one project.

FAQs Frequently asked questions about the topic:

Create an email address with 1
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E-Business (e Business) – Definitions and Ways to Create it Better #find #business

#e business

#

e-Business

There are many definitions of e-business, for example we can defines e-business as any net business activity that transforms internal and external relationships to create value and exploit market opportunities driven by new rules of the connected economy. actually the word e means electronic so it means business via electronic channels as website, social networks and emails. Therefore e-commerce is result of e business.

e-Business Definition

First of all, look at the word e-business, it includes from two words 1- e 2- business so we can define it electronic business however, it is more than an absolute state of a company and it targets the market opportunities of conducting business under new electronic channels. which revolve around the Internet.

e-business communications in markets

e Business Range

This is an acknowledgement that e business comes in many forms and can be implemented to a very small or a large degree. It is also an acknowledgement that the Internet is an essential component of an e-business strategy. Laudon and Laudon s (2002) definition of e-business, as the use of the Internet and other digital technology for organizational communication, coordination and the management of the firm, encompasses these different adaptations. In the broadest possible terms, however, e-business is an electronic way of doing business. The fact that the value proposition of e-business includes the creation of new market opportunities through electronic channels, should not be ignored as these electronically channeled market opportunities enable companies to lower transaction costs, reduce delivery times, improve customer services, and add convenience.

This site is concerned with the implementation of e-business in the construction industry. In this context, e-business is defined broadly as the conduct of construction business by electronic means.

This fits with broad definitions of the term e-commerce exemplified by the definitions below:

  • The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD): The electronic exchange of information that support and govern commercial activities including organizational management, commercial management, commercial negotiations and contracts, legal and regulatory frameworks, financial settlement arrangements and taxation (OECD,1999).
  • Learnthat. e-Commerce is not just about buying and selling online, but also includes all forms of business activities that are conducted over the Internet (e.g. the business-to-business flow of information between companies or within a company, communication between businesses, online advertising, etc.).
  • Kalakota and Whinston: e-Commerce at its grass root level can be described as an electronic method of doing business, typically over the Internet. Broadly defined, however, eCommerce is a modern business methodology that addresses the needs of organizations, merchants and consumers to cut costs while improving the quality of goods and services, and increasing the speed of service delivery .

Thus, the term, e-business, as used in this site should not be considered synonymous with narrow definitions of e-commerce as the process of buying and selling goods and services online.

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How to Create an Effective Business Continuity Plan #selling #business

#business continuity plan

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How to Create an Effective Business Continuity Plan

We rarely get a head’s up that a disaster is ready to strike. Even with some lead time, though, multiple things can go wrong; every incident is unique and unfolds in unexpected ways.

This is where a business continuity plan comes into play. To give your organization the best shot at success during a disaster, you need to put a current, tested plan in the hands of all personnel responsible for carrying out any part of that plan. The lack of a plan doesn’t just mean your organization will take longer than necessary to recover from an event or incident. You could go out of business for good.

How Business Continuity, Disaster Recovery Plans Differ

Business continuity (BC) refers to maintaining business functions or quickly resuming them in the event of a major disruption, whether caused by a fire, flood, epidemic illness or a malicious attack across the Internet. A BC plan outlines procedures and instructions an organization must follow in the face of such disasters; it covers business processes, assets, human resources, business partners and more.

Many people think a disaster recovery plan is the same as a business continuity plan, but a DR plan focuses mainly on restoring IT infrastructure and operations after a crisis. It’s actually just one part of a complete business continuity plan, as a BC plan looks at the continuity of the entire organization. Do you have a way to get HR, manufacturing, and sales and support functionally up and running so the company can continue to make money right after a disaster?

For example, if the building that houses your customer service representatives is flattened by a tornado, do you know how those reps can handle customer calls? Will they work from home temporarily, or from an alternate location? Companies such as SunGard sell access to cubicles that include a desk, phone and computer in their recovery centers, along with server- and device-based DR services.

Note that a business impact analysis (BIA) is another part of a BC plan. A BIA identifies the impact of a sudden loss of business functions, usually quantified in a cost. Such analysis also helps you evaluate whether you should outsource non-core activities in your BCP, which can come with its own risks. The BIA essentially helps you look at your entire organization’s processes and determine which are most important.

Why Business Continuity Planning Matters

Whether you operate a small business or a large corporation, you strive to remain competitive. It’s vital to retain current customers while increasing your customer base — and there’s no better test of your capability to do so than right after an adverse event.

Because restoring IT is critical for most companies, numerous disaster recovery solutions are available. You can rely on IT to implement those solutions. But what about the rest of your business functions? Your company’s future depends on your people and processes. Being able to handle any incident effectively can have a positive effect on your company’s reputation and market value, and it can increase customer confidence.

First, Create a Business Continuity Plan

If your organization doesn’t have a BC plan in place, start by assessing your business processes, determining which areas are vulnerable, and the potential losses if those processes go down for a day, a few days or a week. This is essentially a (BIA).

Next, develop a plan. You can use any number of free templates available online or find an actual plan published by an organization similar to yours and modify it as needed.

There are six general steps involved in creating a business continuity plan:

  1. Identify the scope of the plan.
  2. Identify key business areas.
  3. Identify critical functions.
  4. Identify dependencies between various business areas and functions.
  5. Determine acceptable downtime for each critical function.
  6. Create a plan to maintain operations.

One common business continuity planning tool is a checklist that includes supplies and equipment, the location of data backups and backup sites, where the plan is available and who should have it, and contact information for emergency responders, key personnel and backup site providers.

Remember that the disaster recovery plan is part of the business continuity plan, so check with your IT department to ensure it has or is actively developing a DR plan.

As you create your plan, consider interviewing key personnel in organizations who have gone through a disaster successfully. People generally like to share “war stories” and the steps and techniques (or clever ideas) that saved the day. Their insights could prove incredibly valuable in helping you to craft a solid business continuity plan.

Then, Test Your Business Continuity Plan

You have to rigorously test a plan to know if it’s complete and will fulfill its intended purpose. Many organizations test a business continuity plan two to four times a year. The schedule depends on your type of organization, the amount of turnover of key personnel and the number of business processes and IT changes that have occurred since the last round of testing.

Common tests include table-top exercises, structured walk-throughs and simulations. Test teams are usually composed of the recovery coordinator and members from each functional unit.

A table-top exercise usually occurs in a conference room with the team poring over the plan, looking for gaps and ensuring that all business units are represented therein.

In a structured walk-through. each team member walks through his or components of the plan in detail to identify weaknesses. Often, the team works through the test with a specific disaster in mind. Some organizations incorporate drills and disaster role-playing into the structured walk-through. Any weaknesses should be corrected and an updated plan distributed to all pertinent staff.

It’s also a good idea to conduct a full emergency evacuation drill at least once a year. This type of test lets you determine if you need to make special arrangements to evacuate staff members who have physical limitations.

Lastly, disaster simulation testing can be quite involved and should be performed annually. For this test, create an environment that simulates an actual disaster, with all the equipment, supplies, and personnel (including business partners and vendors) who would be needed. The purpose of a simulation is to determine if you can carry out critical business functions during the event.

During each phase of business continuity plan testing, include some new employees on the test team. “Fresh eyes” might detect gaps or lapses of information that experienced team members could overlook.

Finally, Review and Improve Your Business Continuity Plan

Much effort goes into creating and initially testing a BC plan. Once that job is complete, some organizations let the plan sit while other, more critical tasks get attention. When this happens, plans go stale and are of no use when needed.

Technology evolves, and people come and go, so the plan needs to be updated, too. Bring key personnel together at least annually to review the plan and discuss any areas that must be modified.

Prior to the review, solicit feedback from staff to incorporate into the plan. Ask all departments or business units to review the plan, including branch locations or other remote units. If you’ve had the misfortune of facing a disaster and had to put the plan into action, be sure to incorporate lessons learned. Many organizations conduct a review in tandem with a table-top exercise or structured walk-through.

How to Ensure Business Continuity Plan Support, Awareness

One way to ensure your plan is not successful is to adopt a casual attitude toward its importance. Every business continuity plan must be supported from the top down. That means senior management must be represented when creating and updating the plan; no one can delegate that responsibility to subordinates. In addition, the plan is likely to remain fresh and viable if senior management makes it a priority by dedicating time for adequate review and testing.

Management is also key to promoting user awareness. If employees don’t know about the plan, how will they be able to react appropriately when every minute counts? Although plan distribution and training can be conducted by business unit managers or HR staff, have someone from the top kick off training and punctuate its significance. It’ll have a greater impact on all employees, giving the plan more credibility and urgency.

Follow everything from CIO





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8 Steps to Create Your Business Strategy – Lighthouse Visionary #lucrative #business #ideas

#business strategy

#

8 Steps to Create Your Business Strategy

Featured Column in Whistler Question newspaper January 28, 2014

You may have noticed that almost everywhere you looked at the start of January, there was something about the importance of setting goals. It’s enough to turn you off of planning for the future but at the very least, it is particularly important to set out direction for your business.

Strategic planning is described as “an organization s process of defining its strategy, or direction, and making decisions on allocating its resources to pursue this strategy.”

Simply put, strategic plans create a road map to determine where an organization is going, how it s going to get there and how it will recognize success.

This segues into an opportunity to create not only a direction for the organization but also to craft a team vision. What kind of team do they want to be? Allow them to identify their team values and define what they want to achieve. Business is moving away from isolated mentalities and has a fresh perspective of a team.

Following are eight phases for the strategic planning process.

  1. Preparation. Identify reasons for planning and determine what outcome your organization wants from this process. Involve a cross-functional team to ensure the plan is realistic and collaborative.
  2. Mission, Vision and Values. Create them if you don’t have them and ensure they are still relevant if they already exist because this is the foundation of your business.
  3. Assess Your Situation. Often referred to as a “SWOT” (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats), this is a tool to examine internal (strengths and weaknesses) and external (opportunities and threats) elements of a business. By reviewing all these factors as they relate to your business, you are able to create key objectives to leverage strengths, minimize weaknesses, capitalize on opportunities and evaluate threats.
  4. Agree on Goals and Objectives. A great definition is “the difference between where we are (current status) and where we want to be (vision and goals) is what we do (target objectives and action plans). In other words, goals are a statement of the visions, specifying accomplishments to be achieved if the vision is to become real. Objectives are statements of specific activities required to achieve the goals, starting from the current status.
  5. Create Action Plans and Timelines. Action planning typically includes deciding who is going to do what and by when and in what order for the organization to reach its strategic goals.
  6. Write the Plan. Complicated plans will collect dust on a shelf. A simple, user-friendly format will encourage those responsible for implementation to refer to it frequently.
  7. Implement the Plan. This is often where things fall apart so it’s imperative to specify the plan’s implementation roles and responsibilities with clear action plans for at least the first 90 days. Also, integrating the plan’s goals and objectives into performance reviews creates a powerful incentive.
  8. Evaluate and Monitor the Plan. Strategies are not set in stone and can be modified based on progress made, obstacles encountered, and the changing environment.

Paving a path is a key ingredient to business success. As Jack Kinder said, “High achievement always takes place in the framework of high expectation.”





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How to create an invoice #starting #a #small #business

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How to create an invoice

Last Updated: 7 July 2016

If you re providing a tax invoice, there are some things you need to include on it for it to be valid. Ensuring your invoices are correct and complete will help you claim your full tax entitlement.

Custom designed invoices

Voluntary standards apply to the layout of tax invoices to help make it easier for your customers to locate important information. If you plan on creating a custom design for your invoice, it s recommended that you follow these voluntary standards as a guide.

Features such as business logos, paper colour, font style, advertising and other additional content on your invoices are not affected by these voluntary standards.

For regular invoices (not tax invoices), it s recommended that you also use these standards as a guide, though you re not required to do so.

What to include in a tax invoice

Tax invoices must include at least seven pieces of information to be valid. Depending on the value of the invoice and what was sold, there may be more requirements.

For sales of less than $1 000, the seven details are:

  1. The words Tax Invoice must be used preferably at the top.
  2. Your identity as the seller, such as your business name or trading name. Contact details are optional, but recommended.
  3. Your ABN or ACN.
  4. The date the tax invoice was created.
  5. A brief description of the items sold, including quantity and price.
  6. The GST amount (if any) payable. You can display GST for each item in a separate column, or within the total price. If you choose not to display it separately, use a statement such as Total includes GST as this is needed for the next detail.
  7. The extent to which each item sold includes GST. You ll meet this requirement if you either:
    • show the GST amount for each item
    • clearly state that the total price includes GST.

Tax invoices for sales of $1 000 or more also need to show the buyers identity or ABN.

Examples of tax invoices

Check out the ATO s website for examples of tax invoices, including examples for the following scenarios:

How can I send my customers their invoices?

The way that you provide your customers with invoices is generally your decision. Depending on the circumstances, you could choose to send your invoice via post, fax, email, printable web page or provide it face to face.

Regardless of which method you choose, sending the invoice at the time of purchase is recommended to encourage prompt payment. If your customer requests a tax invoice from you, there is a requirement that you provide it within 28 days of the request. Your method of delivery should take this into account.

The method that you choose must also allow for record keeping requirements to be met.

Record keeping requirements

By law, you re required to keep business records for at least 5 years. Whether you keep printed or electronic records is up to you.

You need to keep all invoices for income you ve received and payments you ve made to others. These will help you prepare your Business Activity Statement (BAS), income tax return and other tax obligations.

Check out the ATO s Manage your invoices, payments and records for more information on these requirements.

Dealing with unpaid invoices

There are a number of ways that you can deal with unpaid debts and customer disputes. Read our managing unpaid debt page for helpful tips and resources.

You can also check out our case studies on payment disputes for independent contractors.

What happens if the tax invoice is incorrect?

If the tax invoice you sent is incorrect or incomplete, it s not a valid tax invoice. You ll need to replace it with a complete and correct tax invoice.

If you receive a tax invoice with missing information, you can still treat it as a valid tax invoice if you re able to find the information within other documents the supplier has given you. Alternatively, ask for a new one with the correct information.

Tips for invoicing

By following some simple tips, you can help boost your cash flow and reduce the risk of unpaid invoices. Try the following when sending your next invoice:

  • Include your payment terms on the invoice and ensure your customer is aware of them. For example, requiring payment to be made within 30 days of receiving a correct, valid tax invoice.
  • Be timely and predictable. Being prompt when sending your tax invoice ensures that you re paid as soon as possible. If you need to send invoices on a regular basis, try sending them at the same time of day so that your customer knows when to expect them.
  • Offer a variety of payment options and state these on your invoice.
  • Try sending your invoices via email. It can decrease the chance of your invoice being lost in the mail and help encourage a prompt payment.
  • Be detailed in your item description field. Being detailed and providing a full account of the product or service you provided can help reduce the chance of a dispute.

What to do.

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