Home Office

Resources for Creating Your Home Offices

When it comes to working from home, few things can sap your productivity quite like working on the couch. The TV is right there, and those soft, soft cushions call out to you; before you know it, you’re napping while Downton Abbey drowns out the “Knock-knock-knock” of your Slack notifications. It’s just not ideal. What you need is a dedicated workspace. Investing in a good home office empowers you to do your best, stay productive, avoid stress, and nail the work-from-home flow.

 Here are some great resources you can use to ensure you make an office that looks great, functions well, and inspires you to new heights.

Furniture to Fit Your Space

There’s an ideal office design for any space.

  • If you have lots of room for your office, consider giving yourself several different workspaces to break up your day.
  • Strapped for space? You can fit an office into a dining room or even a walk-in closet.
  • If you live in a studio, use barriers to build a separation between work and home.
  • Make sure your office chair is appropriately sized and comfortable enough to use all day.

Organizational Tools

These organizational tips will help you keep your work on track.

The Power of Decor

The way you decorate your space can enhance your productivity.

Keep in mind that the best home office is one that invites you to work and encourages focus. The details — the decoration, how you organize, your workstation — all come down to whatever works best for you. Think about the traditional offices you’ve thrived in, and use those as a jumping-off point. Soon, you’ll have a workspace that’s even more tempting than the couch.

 Ez Information Management can build you an optimized website that effectively sells and markets your products and services. Call 931-729-1674 to learn more!

 

Photo Credit: Pexels

Freelancers at work

Building a Productive Coalition of Freelance Workers

Launching a company of any sort can be nerve-wracking, but deciding to use freelance workers if you are not familiar with how to do so is even more likely to cause anxiety. If you are unsure how to get your business rolling with per-project staff, try these tips.

How To Know What Type of Freelancers to Hire

Not every trade is suited for freelancing remotely; you would not see many benefits by hiring a remote auto mechanic to fix cars, but might do well hiring a web designer or digital marketer on an as-needed basis.

Additional occupations that can be successfully hired as remote freelancers include:

  • Copywriters
  • Marketing consultant
  • Web designers
  • Accountants 

How To Find Freelancers

You must understand your organization's needs before hiring any employee. After you evaluate the work that needs to be completed, you must determine how much you can afford to pay someone else to do it. Companies hiring freelancers should conduct some research into the rates paid for similar services and strike a balance between paying so little that you receive sub-par products and paying such a hefty sum that you are left without much of a return.

Locating specialists can be accomplished using an online job platform like Fiverr. This outlet allows businesses to vet potential candidates using pay rates, portfolio samples, years active, experience, and prior ratings from clients. Additionally, online job boards through sites like Freelancer help employers find freelance candidates in countries like The Philippines. Though internet resources can be extremely beneficial, remember to ask people within your personal network if they know of any qualified people you could hire.

How To Pay International Employees

If you are considering hiring workers in foreign countries, bear in mind that many payment platforms and international wire transfers charge high fees that are cost-prohibitive to many small businesses. Instead, consider a trustworthy low-fee money transfer service like Remitly to pay freelancers. For example, if you need to send money to workers in The Philippines, no fees are applied for three to five-day transfers.

Understand that your project-based workers will likely need to pay taxes in their own countries and that enterprises in the United States could be subject to international tax regulations if conducting business outside the country.

How To Improve Efficiency For Remote Workers

Assignments that necessitate multiple people working from numerous places can become a headache. To simplify the process, consider consolidating all of the work conducted into a portable document format. Using a PDF merging tool, users can add all of the team's files into one document. This saves time digging through the abyss of files that tend to accumulate when completing a detailed project. PDF files also enable users to move pages around until they are in the desired order.

How To Communicate With Freelancers

Research shows that communication is crucial to employee satisfaction and organizational performance. Companies employing solely remote workers may initially face challenges in communicating with them. Be sure to clearly relay your expectations from the onset of your relationship with any contractors. Further, discussing how a particular person prefers to communicate is important in a time that enables people to reach out via a plethora of means.

Hiring freelance employees can save your business precious funds that can be put to better use in growing the company. Do your homework before embarking upon your journey into hiring per-project workers to determine if it is a wise move for your enterprise.

 Ez Information Management can build and optimize websites for small businesses, nonprofit organizations, and small county/town governments. Call 931-729-1674 today!

 

6 tips for Marketing

Six Tips For Marketing Your Business

Your business has opened, you’ve had customers walk through your doors, but now what? How do you get repeat business and solid customer relationships that will lead to sales for years to come? Marketing your business allows you to promote your products or services to your existing customers and attract new ones. The following six tips for marketing your business will help get the word out about your services and make sure customers return.

1. Networking

Don’t overlook networking as a source of new business. Networking events in Centerville are not only a great way to meet potential clients, but they’re also an opportunity to ask them about their business, and to ask them what specific problems they’re looking to solve. Their responses can help you develop new products, services, and new markets.

2. Ask For Referrals

When you’re first starting out, the business will likely be slow. That can be discouraging. It can also make you feel like you have to work harder to get attention — but that’s not necessarily true. Instead, ask your loyal customers to help you out by referring your brand to their friends and colleagues.

3. Boosting Your Skills

Consider boosting your management and leadership skills with an online MBA. You can complete a program entirely online or partially online. While an online MBA does not offer all of the benefits of an on-campus program, it still provides you with a high-quality education. You can earn your degree at your own pace while balancing your home and work life. By completing courses online, you can spend less time in school and more time earning money in your chosen field. Some subjects you can study include:

  • Accounting

  • Corporate finance

  • Strategic planning

  • Research and statistics

4. Creating a Website and SEO

A few simple tweaks can make all of the difference to make an effective website. Before setting up a business website, you should know what search engine optimization is and how it will affect your site’s ability to generate traffic and increase sales. Consider hiring a professional web developer or consultant in Centerville who knows what they are doing. Their services may cost more than you are used to paying, but SEO changes take time and effort to implement correctly.

5. What Type of Content to Publish on Your Website and Social Media

Spamming people with every piece of information about your business isn’t good marketing. Determine what your customers need to know, then provide it to them regularly through social media and your website. If you can help others in return for their e-mail address, try promoting special offers or collecting testimonials or questions from readers—or invite them to participate in some way with an upcoming event, survey, or contest.

6. Offer Free Products or Coupons

A simple but effective marketing tool, offering a free sample of your product can be a smart way to get people interested in your business. Whether you’re giving away test runs or discounts on larger products, offering something to potential customers is an easy way to spread awareness about your business.

Work and Dedication

Remember, marketing your business requires work and dedication. It’s not a one-and-done procedure — instead, think of it as an ongoing process that requires consistent attention. Visit Ez Information Management, based in Centerville for website development.

Safety Tips for Budding Entrepreneurs Setting Up Home Offices for Meetings

safety TipsWhile many had hoped COVID-19 would already be behind us, that isn’t the case. As a result, budding entrepreneurs want to take precautions when setting up their home offices for client meetings. That way, they can make safety a priority.

If you aren’t sure how to create a COVID-safe home office, Ez Information Management has some tips that can help and other valuable business resources.

Quick Safety Tips

Before you worry about decorating your home office, it’s important to learn the fundamentals. If you want to make health a priority, make sure you:

You should also use technologies that let you reduce contact. Payment and invoicing software is a great place to start, as you won’t have to handle paper bills or payment cards. Web conferencing solutions are another excellent option, allowing you to meet virtually instead of in person.

Home Office Placement

If hosting in-person meetings is essential, make sure your home office is positioned properly in your home. While having a separate entrance from the exterior is ideal, that isn’t practical for everyone. As a result, simply choosing a room that’s as close to your front door as possible is wise, ensuring visitors don’t have to wander through the rest of your home.

For homeowners that may sell soon, a fully functional home office is an update that could boost your house’s appraisal value. Make sure to take before and after photos and track the expenses, allowing you to more easily quantify the improvement’s value.

In-Person Meeting Design

Creating a layout that promotes social distancing is wise if in-person meetings are essential. One of the simplest ways to begin is by placing your chairs at least six feet apart.

By going with heavier furniture pieces instead of traditional office chairs, the odds that your visitors will move them goes down dramatically. If you then place a sizable coffee table in between the seats, you add another barrier that makes maintaining the proper distance easier. Plus, you’ll have a usable surface available.

If you own a great couch or chair that’s a bit damaged, you could get it fixed by contacting furniture upholstery services. Generally, a large couch costs between $1,200 and $3,500, though the exact price depends on the size, material choices, type of damage, and more. Before you contact companies to get quotes, spend time reading online reviews to find reliable services in your area.

Preparing for Virtual Meetings

Since virtual meetings are safer, ensuring you’re ready to use that approach is wise. Invest in high-speed internet and use a hardwire connection. Get a top-notch camera and microphone for superior audio and video, and work on your lighting to ensure you’re easily seen. Along with opening windows for natural light, add in floor and table lamps and install a ring light to improve overall illumination.

You also want to check the background to make sure it’s camera-friendly. Remove any clutter and make sure the wall behind you is a neutral color that shows well on camera, like a soft blue. That way, your space will look its best during the meeting.

Bonus Tip for Improved Financial Safety

Along with physical safety, you also want to consider your personal financial safety and find ways to protect personal assets. By updating your business structure and becoming an LLC, you reduce your liability. Plus, you can lower the cost of filing by skipping the attorney and either filing yourself or using a formation service. Before starting, check the laws in your area, as rules vary by state.

 

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