Important Things You Should Know Before Franchising in Singapore
August 25, 2016
Singapore offers many avenues of franchising and business opportunities whether it’s in the hotel sector, the event sector or the educational sector. But starting a business in Singapore whether it’s a brand new business venture or franchise is not going to be easy. Singapore has been nicknamed as the Lion City because of its cut throat ways of doing business.
The laws, rules, and regulations in Singapore when it comes to employees and landlords is much stricter than other countries and the penalties for breaking these laws can be severe. So before you think of starting up a franchise or any kind of business opportunities in Singapore there are 3 important things that you need to be aware of –
1. You are safer with the popular brands – if you are planning to start a franchise in Singapore of an already established or popular brand like Subway or 7-Eleven you as the franchisee will have to face less clout when dealing with landlords and negotiating with them. Landlords will already be aware of established brands that have already built a name and reputation for themselves and will behave more leniently with you and won’t give you such a hard time as opposed to a new brand that has never been heard of.
The largest F&B franchises in Singapore include Pizza Hut, McDonalds, and Subway.
2. Select a business that is niche, unique and something that excites you – whatever you do in life, make sure that you are passionate about it otherwise you might not be that successful in it. Choose a business or franchise that interests you and excites you and that suits your personality. If you do something you are passionate about you won’t feel the strain of working long hours and spending huge amounts of money on it because you will know that it was all worth it at the end of the day.
Also, try to do business or open a franchise in something that is niche and that doesn’t have much competition in the market. Choose something where the overhead costs are low like something in the services sector or something that allows you to work from home. Examples – childcare services and dog walking services.
3. Build good relationships – last but not the least make sure to make friends, build contacts and maintain good business relationships wherever you go. This is especially with landlords and suppliers as you never know when you might require their services next. Maintain friendly relations with everyone and avoid disputes and disagreements.
Follow these simple tips to build a successful business or franchise in Singapore.
Common Mistakes While Implementing ITIL Solutions in Your Organization
July 16, 2016
Being certified in ITIL will allow you to integrate a number of operational improvements in your organization. But it does not always go according to plan. The desire to show your enthusiasm and apply what you have learned can backfire if you do not do so carefully.
Take a look at 4 of the most common mistakes you can make when applying ITIL knowledge in your organization.
1. Assuming ITIL is the solution to all your problems
ITIL is not a magic wand which will solve all your problems once you have a certificate for it. It is merely a set of guidelines and best practices in IT service management which allow you to tackle these problems effectively. You could implement the best solution after a lot of consideration and it could still fail. No matter how highly certified you are, the implementation of ITIL practices differs from one organization to another. The results are also vastly different based on the follow through.
2. Forming new teams
ITIL is a practice which has to be included in your day-to-day activities. Anyone can be a part of the process. But a lot of times, you end up forming a new team to implement ITIL. There is absolutely no need for a new team because you can include employees who are smart and willing to learn, not necessarily trained in ITIL, to implement solutions. If you do form a team, ensure the people you select are able to fit into roles such as project managers, owners, stakeholders etc.
3. Not assessing risks
When you are implementing a change in your process, it is necessary to assess the amount of risk involved. You should always ensure there is a backup in case the proposed solution fails. Consult enterprise managers and senior management to have a level of accountability where the change has a greater risk. Failure to do so can lead to a breakdown in productivity and impact the business negatively.
4. Integrating ITIL in every single process
Once you have learned the importance of ITIL and its advantages, you may be tempted to implement it in each and every process. This is not necessary because some processes may already be successful and do not need any additional interventions. Before implementing solutions analyze where ITIL can be used and apply it there effectively.
There are a number of service providers who specialize in training and providing ITIL certification in Singapore. Millions of certified professionals all over the world already use it successfully in their organizations. By improving customer satisfaction, communication, and reducing costs, ITIL offers many benefits, but only if it is applied properly.
Top 5 Self-Payment Kiosk Software for Banks
July 1, 2016
Banking services are now more user friendly thanks to the self- service payment kiosks. Listed here is the top five self-payment kiosk software for Banks.
1. LiveWire Kiosk: The software offered by LiveWire combines digital signs with mobile and web apps. As a result the banks have control over real time management of social media, CRM, and other services. Representatives in a Bank can now focus on handling complicated situations instead of answering common customer queries. Through this software, a customer can view their account details, change PIN and avail other services.
2. Meridian: A pioneer in kiosk software solutions, Meridian has been leading the industry for the past 25 years. Kiosks manufactured by Meridian have a global appeal. The software solution offered by the North Carolina based company aids customers in expanding their outreach and brand presence. Software solutions offered by Meridian include MzeroManage (remotely monitors performance), MzeroPlatform (software for security) and MezoCreate (development of Customized software). Customer support offered by the company is best in class with round the clock on-site and off-site assistance.
3. Moki: US based Moki Mobility offers kiosk solutions that run on iPad tablets and Android. Marketing strategies are evolving to include smart phones and iPad screens as an economic alternative. Instead of installing a number of Kiosks for customer queries in banks, iPads in the same number meet the purpose at half the investment. Moreover, these devices can be accessed and controlled from remote locations. Features offered by Moki are remote access, onsite printing, touch screen, secure browsing, virtual keyboard, wireless access and usage reporting.
4. RedyRef Interactive Kiosk: Founded back in 1920, the US based software and hardware giant RedyRef offers kiosk management solutions that are easy to install, ADA compliant and accessible. The features offered include reservation of activities, remote access, onsite printing, order fulfillment, secure browsing, user reporting and touch screen interaction.
5. Provisio: Installed in Banks and mobile companies, Provisio is a market leader in providing remote access and management, secure kiosk and digital signage. The software solution SiteKiosk is specific for maintaining security lockdown of information in kiosks that are in the public domain. Online banking to check banking details is made easy by SiteKiosk. The user friendly nature of the software has found acceptance with the older conservative generation as well. SiteRemote, another software solution, offers control, configuration and management of information displayed at the kiosk.
Banking solutions offered by self-service payment kiosks, top 5 self-service payment kiosk software
Integrating Kanban into Your Business
June 28, 2016
When it comes to business, especially retail, inventory is the key to your success. Every customer demand is linked to your inventory. And you have to ensure the demand is met on time and satisfactorily. But just because it is important does not mean you hoard your warehouses because, at the end of the day, it is a cost the organization will have to bear. Many organizations ensure their inventory is at a minimum such that demands can be met without crippling costs.
What is Kanban?
Kanban is an inventory-control system which is used to improve efficiency in production. The primary purpose of Kanban is to maintain inventory. Kanban works on actual usage data and not on forecasts which is why it is a highly effective tool in inventory management. As and when an item is consumed, the system sends a signal to replenish the inventory.
Business benefits of Kanban
Kanban has a number of benefits which can improve the overall efficiency of your business.
* Kanban reduces your inventory by storing materials only when there is a demand. In case of any upgrade, it can be included in the final product without the need for storing obsolete parts and components.
* There is a curb on overproducing items because in Kanban items are manufactured on demand and not otherwise. This greatly cuts production and storage costs.
* When the system encounters a problem, the production stops. You are able to analyze the cause of the problem and correct them immediately.
* The biggest advantage of Kanban is its role in reducing cost, be it logistics, storage, production, overhead, or inventory.
* Administrative blocks are reduced in Kanban allowing better access to resources and resulting in an increase in production.
Kanban and Enterprise Resource Planning
ERP is a predictive process where the result is calculated given a series of information. Kanban is a subjective process. Here, the result depends on the actual demand of the customer rather than data. Kanban actions a plan as and when it is required. ERP, however, works through a forecasted plan to be applied in the future. Production cycles in ERP are determined by cost. Therefore, production is undertaken when costs are low. Kanban does not look at forecasts and hence production happens as the demand comes in. Kanban and ERP are two sides of the same coin. Their purpose is the same but the execution is quite different.
Dealers of Kanban and ERP software in Singapore are aplenty . Depending on the nature of your business it is essential you choose either or both.
Cloud Computing and ERP
June 27, 2016
Software and information technology have progressed in leaps and bounds. Different software and even a collection of software are used by organization to achieve business and process accuracy. Software applications are customized by a dedicated team of engineers in every organization, to achieve the best level of efficiency and accuracy. This in turn further helps in the smooth running of business. This yields more revenue and thereby ensures success and growth for an organization. One such suite of application is the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software.
Businesses grow in Singapore. It has for a long time been the commercial capital of Asia. This is because it has the environment that is conducive for companies to establish themselves and grow there. The policies formulated by the government ensure that Singapore has minimal corruption and even tax issues are not a headache for businessmen. For these reasons Singapore has always been one of the favorite places for businessmen.
Business and software are intrinsically connected in the modern times. Many processes that were earlier regulated and maintained by human beings can be done in a jiffy by advanced applications. A collection of such applications to maintain various processes in an organization is ERP software. ERP software in Singapore is very common. As Singapore is commercially very ripe, for businesses to run successfully it is important for organizations to be able to manage their information judiciously. For this ERP software is much needed.
Cloud Computing and ERP
Cloud computing is a much talked about topic in the present times. It is also called on-demand computing. It functions on the premise of using the internet to store data provide computing resources that are shared. Cloud computing covers from emailing to photo sharing on a social networking site. It encompasses the huge arena of hosting a computing infrastructure of a corporation functioning worldwide, from remote data centers.
Singapore has many large global enterprises. ERP is an enterprise software as it is mainly used by large enterprises. ERP software in Singapore is slowly moving towards cloud computing as many multinational firms are functioning in Singapore. Cloud ERP ensures that the company’s processes like accounting, supply chain, human resource management, and manufacturing are run through cloud. This ensures that the data is never lost due to malfunctioning of a software or hardware as the data is stored in the World Wide Web. Hence cloud ERP is the new technology that is soon going to take over the world.
Little History Of The Self Service Kiosk That Is Interesting
June 24, 2016
What is it? – Self Service Kiosk is a terminal that is computerized which can feature all the exceptional software and hardware developed to exhibit in the public for accessing any kind of information and any kind of application to communicate, commerce, education and entertainment. Initially they were designed like the telephone booths and now are the days where they are being used whilst sitting on a chair or bench at the own comfort.
Where it is Kept and what is the use? – The self service kiosk or interactive kiosk is used by people and in the place of high foot fall. So, strategically the kiosk is placed in airports, metro stations, multiplexes and airports etc. Kiosk being technologically integrated helps in performing many unique and wide ranges of roles. For example, if it is a heavy traffic multiplex it is highly impossible to give the ticket for online booked show in a theatre, that too manually. So few cinema theatres do have the Kiosk option which can give the ticket by input of a code and online booked number which save time and rush. Owners can have many specifications to meet the requirements of their business. Few may require a bill acceptor while the other a card reader, so it is easy to design a Kiosk as per the need.
History – The first and foremost self service kiosk was seen by many visitors, students and teachers of University of Illinois during an Urbana Campaign. It was then led by Murray Lappe, Student, Pre-med. It is designed on a Plato Computer which was made accessible through a touch screen made of Plasma. This display panel was first invented by Donald L Bitzer at University of Illinois. The kiosk allowed everyone who wants to seek information regarding the movies, courses, extracurricular office to bus schedules and other directory related stuff.
The first commercial use was a conceptual project designed and developed by a retailer of the shoe named Florshem Shoe Co. It was led by a most ingenious executive vice president in 1985. It was manufactured, created and customized with the help of ByVideo Inc resided in Sunnyvale of California. It was a huge network built even though the first commercial kiosk; as huge as 600 Kiosks as a network. With these Kiosks a customer can actually buy whatever shoe they want, that which is not available based on the retail stock or location. Any shoe can be selected by the choice of colours and size and a payment should be made on the Kiosk only. The payment made will directly reach the mainframe for the immediately following day either as a home delivery or in few cases as the store delivery. It lasted for 6 long years in many locations.
The payroll outsourcing dilemma; what you need to consider.
May 2, 2016
If you run a business, you can outsource your payroll needs to a third party professional firm. Apart from generating reports on payroll, the firm can also distribute checks, and compute taxes. Here’s what you need to consider when outsourcing your payroll:
Convenience: Outsourcing your payroll can save you time, resources, and efforts. You can focus on bettering your strategy, expanding your services and clientele, while the professional firm takes care of your records for you. Time saved is time gained, and when you can utilize it better, you save company resources.
Better workforce: When the right kind of person can be hard to get to recruit for your payroll work, you can delegate the responsibility to a professional or a team of professionals working for an outsourcing firm. They work with you on your budget, keeping in mind your specific needs, and make sure your work is done without any hassles.
Error free payroll: Payroll outsourcing services are well-versed in labour laws, and other regulations regarding employee rights and benefits. Keeping track of savings accounts and tax filing may be tiresome, and outsourcing can work wonders for you.
Reliability of the firm you hire: Industry reputation may be something to go by, but not every service is handled the same way by your provider. Outsourcing payroll needs to a firm in another country or continent may cause a language problem. There is a danger that the worker may misunderstand your specifications. Not to mention, the risk of the firm going out of business.
Cost issues: Although outsourcing can save you some spending, you still need to pay your hires well. Your expenditure may exceed budget when you pay for services you don’t need.
Breach of control over information: Human error or technological glitches can cause leakage of details of your employees and payroll. Competitors may notice the inner workings of your company and may try to attract your employees with offers of better pay. Financial dealings out in the open can never be good for the health of your business.
While every coin has two sides to it, it is always important to make sure you understand what you are getting into when you outsource your payroll. Reliability, security and cost-effectiveness are aspects you need to consider while facing the payroll outsourcing dilemma. For guidance, check out Intro International’s payroll outsourcing services.
English: The official language of Singapore
May 2, 2016
Singapore is known to be a cosmopolitan city. 42% of its population are expatriates who were born outside. Even amongst the natives there are people belonging to the same ethnic group but speaking different dialects. Inhabitants of the same city speaking different languages and dialects often becomes a point of conflict resulting in adverse diversity and administration problems. Thus it is very important to have one lingua franca that connects the people of the city.
In Singapore there are four official languages-Malay, Tamil, Chinese and English. Thus in order to be able to standardize English as the official language, there must be provisions for English course in Singapore. The other two official languages of Singapore are Asian in origin, thus it is more easily accepted in the city as compare to English. Hence in order to spread English amongst the people of Singapore, it must be a part of the curriculum. There should be official English lessons as otherwise it is difficult to integrate this western language into the life of the native Singaporean.
Even in English, there are two dialects-Standard Singapore English (SSE) and Singapore Colloquial English (better known as Singlish). In 2005 it was found in a survey that amongst Chinese Singaporeans, one-third were using English as their medium of communication while half were speaking in Mandarin. Such diversity in a single ethnic group often led to difficulties and thus the need to make English as the official language in which education from primary level to higher education is imparted.
Due to the wide use of Singlish, the government of Singapore launched the ‘Speak Good English’ movement in 2000. This was done to replace Singlish with Standard English. As English is the official working language of Singapore, it was needed to show to the people the importance of leaning Standard English and speaking the same. For this too, English course in Singapore was a much needed means.
Thus learning English in Singapore is very important as it is the official language of the city. In 2010, according to one’s degree of knowledge of English the Singaporeans were divided into five categories, in which one category was the ones who used English only for official purpose and spoke in other languages. Thus in order to make English the dominant language in this city, English courses must be made regular in this city as English is the working language of Singapore
Need To Meet The Global Competition? – No Worries! You Can Do That!
May 2, 2016
In the current global competition it has become a must be up-to-date on various business concepts, technical skills and most importantly the cultural topics that help to deliver a smooth and successful service to the client. At Berlitz, there is this important tool that helps the organizations to enhance their requisite skills in the trending world and to meet the competitive challenges.
What is it?
The proprietary tool is called as the Cultural Navigator. This is a distinctive web based platform that helps to analyze and get to know minute to minute data and insights over a vast range of business globally and topics culturally for making the organization ready to meet the demanding challenges and requirements. This tool helps in delivering highly engaged as well as great experience in learning with the innovative techniques used in designing. This can hold tight the variety of every person and their backdrops, partners, stakeholders and the company’s employees to deliver great rendering. In a situation of a person who is moved to Singapore for a business trip and having a client of Chinese origin, this tool might come to help to learn Mandarin in Singapore along with the cultures and customs of China.
Will it help?
The analysis help an individual to build up their awareness on the attributes and cultures which may come into help when actually working in the environment of people coming from diverse cultures. Also, this learning helps in facing the challenges and addressing different strategies which finally leads to a successful experience not only for the one who learned but also to the people involved in delivering the job. The tool can actually be completely integrated inside the company and can be customized as per the requirements of each use. All the information is made to be available within the reach of the employees regarding any business data in an organized format and is topic specified. This type of arrangement can support the work enhancement with much ease and confidence beyond cultures.
Important characteristics –
This tool is being used by leading companies of the world and is developed as to use it even in a tablet or a Smartphone. This tool is available in as many as 13 languages and is personalized for the LMS or intranets of corporate. SME group will always be there to help in case of any doubts. This tool helps to cross barriers and learning various cultures thus, helping a person to mingle with everyone around in the business world as the entire nation’s data in respect to customs, cultures and business practices is made available. One can try matching their own profile of culture with more than 100 practices as well as cultures as this tool is being used in more than 75 countries by more than 130,000 users. So, it is time to just start expanding the cultural skills and break the barriers by following the essential learning footsteps.
5 Best Indoor Team Building Exercises
April 29, 2016
Team building is very important for every organization. Let us have a look at some of the indoor activities that promote corporate team building .
1. Poker Tower
In this exercise, each group that consists of two to five members is distributed with poker cards and also a pair of scissors. The group should build poker towers using the cards. The team that builds the tallest structure wins. This exercise will improve creativity and bonding among the members.
The building blocks with which children generally play are the items needed for this exercise. The instructor starts the exercise by building a sculpture with a few building blocks. Each team will have 3 to 6 members. Every team will also be provided with building blocks for duplicating the structure that has been created by the instructor. All the groups will then stand at an equal distance from the sculpture of the instructor. Members from every team can go near the sculpture and observe it for a few minutes. They should not photograph or note down any points. The teams should then try replicating the structure. The team that creates a structure that is almost similar to the original wins. This exercise will help in improving effective communication and abilities of problem solving and strategizing in members.
3. Mine Fields
This exercise also improves effective communication and trust among members. The game involves a large hallway or room. Mine fields are created in a haphazard manner using bottles, balls, cones, etc. One member will be blind-folded and he or she should cross the hallway by taking instructions from another member who stands outside the hallway. If the member successfully avoids the minefileds and crosses the hallway, the team wins.
This exercise involves use of a picture book created by Istvan Banyai. “Zoom” is the title of this wordless book that features sequential pictures. These pictures work together and create a narrative. Members will get a picture each and they should look at their pictures only. They should neither allow others to see their pictures nor should they look at the pictures of others. They should do an in-depth study of their pictures so they can put them in the right sequence without seeing the pictures of others. Discussions are allowed. This game is intended to improve communication and leadership skills among members.
5. Blindfold polygon
All the team members are blind folded and they should move slowly to find a rope kept in their midst on the floor. The members should move slowly and spot the rope. They should also form several shapes by working together and within a set time. This will improve the capabilities of the team members in communicating while facing pressure.