The Importance of Site Safety Awareness

No matter what industry you’re in, health and safety is always a top priority. If you work in construction, having a site safety awareness certificate can do wonders for your career. The construction industry is dangerous and failure to identify potential hazards can lead to injuries or even fatalities.


Identifying hazards

The first preventative measure that everyone should take is to identify all of the potential hazards in the working environment. This includes anything from incorrect operation of machinery to wearing safety goggles. Failure to find the hazard in the first place will significantly increase risk.

In order to positively identify hazards specific training should be provided before you undertake the given task. If you have found new employment, but haven’t had experience in that particular area, then the training should be within working hours.

Working from heights

Falling from heights is one of the most common causes of injury. While some tasks may not seem particularly dangerous, without proper training and preparation, even at small heights, serious issues could occur. In the UK over a third of all falling injuries happen below the height of two metres.

Employment benefits

Having health and safety qualifications on your CV can help you find employment. Not only does it show employers that you are responsible and know the job well; but it also proves that you have dedication for the topic by taking time out of your own schedule to further your knowledge.

If you want to earn a qualification in a health and safety topic, then Nebosh training courses can be very useful. Nebosh training courses are widely recognised throughout the world and will provide you with the foundation you need to progress within your chosen industry.

Manual handling training courses

One of the best qualifications for labour or factory workers to possess is a manual handling accreditation. There are two different ways to complete manual handling training courses. You can either complete a practical course or a theory based course. While they are both beneficial, having a combination of the two is always best as it shows that you have both the knowledge and hands on experience.

Most institutions run courses throughout the country at colleges and universities. Many site safety awareness courses are low cost and don’t take longer than a few days to complete. If you are looking for ways to broaden your horizons and build up your portfolio, consider for specialist accreditations.

About the Author

Kieran McVeigh has been working in the construction industry for the past 22 years and is constantly striving to improve his craft through short training courses.

Tips to Help You Pass Those School Exams

Some people thrive in academia and excel at taking exams. Personally, although I am not particularly bad at it, I hate it. I see people putting pressure on themselves, and even other people putting pressure on them. Whilst most people cope, some really do not, and it shows in their final results. In London, where 60% of the workforce consists of graduates, you can see why there is so much pressure for kids to do well on their exams. There is a good reason for the massive uptake of tutors in West London, where I live. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to make studying for that exam that much easier.



Preparation Is Key


This is a good rule for life in general. Never put off your studying; you will keep putting it off, and then the night before, you will be in a panic – drinking energy drinks all night and not sleeping, which will show in your exam results. Instead, plan a revision routine a few weeks before your exam, and try to stick to it. Don’t sit for hours every night; make it small frequent chunks, and it will be easier than you expect. Reward yourself when you do so, and when you finally get to exam day, you will arrive confident in the knowledge that you have done as much as you possibly could. You will be surprised by how much more information you retain by doing this instead of cramming the night before.


Make Sure You Understand Your Subject


It is very rare for person to excel at every single subject that they study. There will be times and lessons where you just do not have a clue about what is going on. The key here is to let someone know so that they can help you with that. This could be a teacher, tutor, or parent. Sometimes, all it takes is a five-minute explanation, and you are on your way. At other times, a little bit of extra tutoring from school or via a private tutor can make all the difference. There are plenty of science, maths, and English tutors in West London. Do not suffer silently and risk failing that exam because you pretended that you were okay. It is perfectly acceptable to ask for help.


Look After Yourself


Exams are stressful. Nobody doubts that for a second, and if you talk to people who have already taken them, they will tell you stories about the quivering wrecks that they were the days leading up to their exams. If you feel bad about your exams, talk to someone about it. They might be able to help in some way. It is important that you eat properly, especially on the day of the exam, and get the appropriate amount of sleep. If you are up all night cramming and eating and drinking sugar, you will crash at some point in the day. That is not recommended and will show in your results. If you are having problems sleeping, tell your parents or a trusted teacher and get some advice.


Remember, just because you fail an exam, it is not the end of the world. You can resit them or adjust your career options accordingly. Plenty of people have done well in their lives who did not pass lots of exams, so, whilst it is good to be ambitious and push yourself, don’t punish yourself in the process.



Image attributed to Stuart Miles


An Introduction to the University of Hong Kong’s MBA Programme

The University of Hong Kong, or HKU, is the most prestigious MBA programme currently available in Asia, and many undergraduates are very interested in admission to university. This year, The Economist magazine ranked HKU as the number one MBA programme in Asia for the fourth consecutive year. The Financial Times also ranked HKU as the thirty-first best MBA programme in the world. This is very big news because Hong Kong University is also one of the youngest MBA programmes in the world. As such, many undergraduates who are interested about admission to university are wondering what is required of them should they decide to apply. Here’s what you need to know about the HKU MBA programme.


HKU hopefuls have two options when applying for admission to university: part-time or full-time. The requirements are the same for both: an applicant must have a recognized bachelor’s degree, a satisfactory GMAT score (600 minimum), at least two years of postgraduate work experience, and a passable Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) proficiency score. If you happen to be lacking in the GMAT or TOEFL score area, you can still apply as long as you have an undergraduate degree, two years of postgraduate work, and submit your GMAT and TOEFL scores at a later date. Additionally, the TOEFL score requirement does not apply if your undergraduate degree comes from an institution where the curriculum’s main language is English.


Because of HKU’s growing status, admission to university is drawing lots of international student interest. While this is exciting, getting a student visa can be a tricky process for the right to study at HKU. While applying for a student visa, a student needs to provide proof of residency in Hong Kong. This means a student has to already have their intended residence set-up beforehand, whether it be in the school’s dormitories or an apartment off-campus. But be warned: bureaucracy can be a time consuming process, so once you decide on attending Hong Kong University for an MBA, find a place to live and begin the visa process immediately. If any questions arise, contact the administration office at Hong Kong University.


If you are an international student, Hong Kong University can also be expensive. While Hong Kong locals pay about HK$50,000 a year, an international student can expect to pay over three times that. Coupled with the high cost of living in Hong Kong, expenses can add up quickly. This also doesn’t include books or other MBA school necessities. Thankfully, there are lots of scholarships and grants available to students based on outstanding academic achievements. If you’ve also worked hard to succeed, Hong Kong University has financial help opportunities available.


In the end, admission to University of Hong Kong’s Business School is intended for those who want to succeed and thrive in the booming economy of Hong Kong and the rest of Asia. Hong Kong leads the world with the freest economy, low business taxes, a growing strategic financial centre, and much more. Hong Kong University’s Business School is number one in Asia for a reason: it takes pride in expanding within the Asia-Pacific region while keeping an international conscience in mind. Wherever your MBA from Hong Kong University takes you, you will be greeted with respect.



Relevance of MBA Programs in the Current Job Market

Higher education is becoming more important in today’s world. The number of people seeking additional certifications after their first degree is increasing, as employers become more demanding about the job specifications. Some jobs currently require the applicants to have a master’s degree as a minimum requirement even before they are considered for the position. Also, prior to giving any promotions, a good number of employers insist that employees should have an MBA; meaning possessing one is directly linked to career growth. An MBA is highly regarded as it prepares an individual to handle the management aspects of an organization better, and it gives the person an edge over other workers as well.


Currently, Canada is considered one of the top destinations for students seeking MBA degrees. This is based on rankings given by various researchers who have also revealed that Canadian Business schools are among the best worldwide. Several of these schools have been positioned among the top 20; and while the highflying ones feature prominently on this list, there are also less known ones that are equally good, and these offer MBA courses that are just as competitive if not better.

Wilfrid Laurier University is one of the renowned Canadian universities that offer MBA programs. The good thing about taking an MBA here is that one will not only acquire knowledge in their field of study, but the program also instills confidence and leadership skills in the students. The institution basically operates with a global inclination, seeing as the market at present requires business executives to think global in their decision making. In view of this, the establishment helps students become aware and understand that even as they seek for solutions, they will not only be solving problems for Canada or Europe but for the world as a whole.

Some of the students who have gone through the MBA program at Wilfred Laurier University manage the biggest corporations earning millions of dollars in annual revenue. They are also among the most competitive in the market and are highly regarded among their peers, considering the superior level of training that they receive. The best part is that people who get an MBA are more likely to start off on a higher salary and get a salary raise; this means that it doesn’t take them too long to recoup the investment made while obtaining their Masters degrees. Indeed, higher education in Canada is very important seeing as MBA graduates are usually better paid than their high school graduate counterparts. This has seen the number of students seeking higher education rise sharply in the past decade.

While it is important for learners to look for avenues to improve their academic qualifications, it’s equally important for employers to facilitate their workforce appropriately and provide them with opportunities to pursue further studies. Even as this may help employees grow as individuals, it is also the best way to ensure that the company remains competitive so that it is well armed to face and address challenges in future

How To Become An Investment Banker

Investment banking can be a rewarding and lucrative career. Not only does it offer the opportunity to progress into high-level executive positions, many investment bankers also move on to become venture capitalists such as VC Rick Bolander. However, the truth is that only a small number of people ever make it into investment banking – the industry is highly selective and competition among candidates is fierce. Therefore, if you want to get into this field, you need to invest serious time in gaining the experience and qualifications that will maximize your chances of getting hired.



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The good news is that following the financial crisis, there are increased opportunities for people who can help banks to manage risk. In fact, according to a 2013 report by Accenture, a combination of changing economic conditions, new technological advances and tougher regulations are creating opportunities for candidates who have analytical capabilities – including statistical analysis, information modeling and quantitative analysis. The study goes on to forecast that the global banking industry is likely to recruit 21,500 new bank analysts by 2015, an increase of 23% over 2010. In fact, there may actually be a shortage of these types of skills. However, you should know that many of these roles are highly technical. For instance, most quantitative analysts – or quants as they are known – have a PhD in mathematics.


If you do not have this level of technical ability, then another route is to study for a business degree. As a minimum, you will need a bachelor’s degree, and an MBA is preferred if you are hoping to obtain an advanced position. If you are trying to get an entry level post, then your bachelor’s degree should ideally be from a well-known business school – for example, Wharton or Harvard Business School – and you should focus on areas such as business finance, accounting, economics, statistics and business administration. For advanced roles, your MBA again should come from a high-end business school, and ideally address areas such as bond valuation, options trading strategies, risk management and tax law.


If you do manage to get an interview with an investment bank, then it’s essential to get your preparation right. You need to be prepared to sell your experience confidently – investment bankers are not looking for candidates who are unsure of themselves. Focus on things such as problem solving and analytical skills, as these are what banks are looking for. Also, put a strong focus on your interpersonal skills – while back in the era of Gordon Gekko bankers had a reputation for aggressive and insensitive behavior, this is not the case anymore. Given a bank’s need to work globally across countries and cultures, they need employees who are able to operate in this environment.


Deutsche Bank London

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Finally, be prepared to work like you have never worked before once you are accepted. You need to make it clear during your interview that you are excited about putting in 80 hour weeks on a regular basis. If this is something that you are not prepared to do, then you should reconsider whether investment banking is for you.

Everything you Need to Know About Becoming an Engineer

If you’re looking to provide yourself with job security even when the economy seems bleak then it’s advisable to learn a trade. With this in mind, could becoming an electrician be the right choice for you? The truth is that despite the fragile economy there still appears to be a large skills shortage in the UK with qualified electricians being one of these groups in high demand. Because of this qualified electricians have no shortage of work and in many cases have way more than they can handle. Therefore with the right training, there’s plenty of work to go around.

So What Do You Need?

The good news is that there is no qualification barriers needed to become an electrician as GCSEs are not a pre-requisite. However, you will be expected to pass various qualifications en-route which are both theory and practical based. You’ll also need to be adaptable, a good communicator, and most importantly not be colour blind. So how do you become an electrician?

Work Based Training Scheme

A work based training scheme or apprenticeship is often considered to be the best way of learning a trade or skill simply because you’re getting paid whilst learning a trade. In addition you’ll be working alongside highly skilled electricians where you can learn on the job. However, these can be hard to come by, but a simple online search for electrical apprenticeships should yield results.

Electrical Training Courses

Another way is to enter the profession is through an electrical training course. There are many available and they range from the absolute beginner, through to refresher and specialised courses. These are full time recognised courses where you’ll receive qualifications needed to enter the electrical trade. Initial qualifications include an NVQ level 3 in the Requirements for Electrical Installations and the Certificate for Domestic Electrical Installers. In addition you’ll receive training relating to health and safety, wiring regulations, and testing and inspection. These are basic requirements needed to work in the electrician industry and will allow you to go on and diversify or specialise to further your chances of employment. Specialities such as renewable technologies or solar installations may well be an advantage. Costs of courses can vary tremendously so definitely shop around

What Can I be Expected to Earn?

Starting salaries for an apprentice electrician are somewhere between £14,000 and £19,000 per year, rising to 30,000-35,000 for a senior electrician. Specialised electricians or those that are self-employed have the capacity to earn considerably more. Hopefully this has given you an idea to get the ball rolling and to decide whether being an electrician is the right career choice for you.

Do a Course and Learn Something New

Thousands of people are doing jobs that they don’t enjoy, simply because they didn’t choose to go into further education and left school with minimum qualifications.

Having the money to go out, get the latest electronic gadgets and move away from home seems like paradise when you’re younger, but as the years roll by, some people begin to yearn to do a job a really enjoy; but they can’t, because they don’t have the qualifications and can’t afford to give up work and go back to school.

Adult education classes are a great solution to this problem. They are affordable and the classes are held in the evenings, so that you can attend after work. Admittedly, you do need to be motivated; it’s not easy to get yourself to a class after a hard day’s work, especially on winter nights when it’s cold and raining.

However, if you do have the motivation, you’ll find Adult Education classes are a good place to meet new people and gain the qualifications that you need for a new job or career.

Classes usually start in September and you pay for them at the beginning of the month, to reserve your place on the course. If it’s a bad month for spending anything extra, you can always apply for a payday loan. A company like Wonga Canada, will have the money in your bank within the hour and you can pay it back once you have your October pay packet.

If you don’t work set hours or going out to an adult education class doesn’t suit you, why not try an online course. Online courses mean that you can study wherever and whenever is best for you. If you’re really keen then you can do the course quickly, but If you don’t have a lot of free time, then you can study over a longer period.

Online courses send the materials to you in the post or by email and you complete your tasks using your computer. Not every course is suitable for online study. If you want to be a plumber or a hairdresser you might be able to work from home on the theory side, but you will have to attend classes in person for the practical lessons.

Online courses are normally more expensive than a government subsidised adult education course, but there are some companies that give discounts for earners on low incomes.

If you want to do a degree course whilst you are working, you can apply to a university and study for a degree or a diploma in stages. You have to gain a certain number of credits in order to get your degree and you can choose different areas of study, which will give you variety in your degree subjects. The courses normally start in September and each credit course must be finished within a stipulated time limit, but if you only take one credit course at a time, you’ll find the work load manageable.

Once you have the qualifications, you will be then be more able to to do a job, or start a career, doing something you really enjoy.


Customer Communication is Vital to Online Business Success

It’s happened to all of us at one time or another: you order something online, and while you might receive an order confirmation, you hear nothing else from the vendor for weeks. By the time the item finally arrives, you have either completely forgotten about it or no longer need the item. Had you heard from the vendor sooner, you might have made changes to your order or at least been prepared for the delay.

customer comunciation

While extreme cases like this are thankfully the exception rather than the rule, they highlight the importance of one vital piece of operating a successful retail business: customer communication. Even the most serious shipment problems can often be mitigated by keeping your customers in the loop and letting them know that you value their business. While staying in touch doesn’t mean you have to update them every hour as you pick, pack and ship their orders, it does mean reaching out at a few key points during the process.

Acknowledgement and Confirmation

Being successful in online sales, whether you’re selling a physical product or you’re a service-based company, requires that you build trust in your customers. After all, people are providing you access to some of the most important details of their lives when they hand over their names, addresses and financial information. They want to know that the business on the other end of the transaction is reputable and trustworthy, and not going to simply take their money and run.

Your communication strategy helps build that trust. It starts with acknowledging the order. Telling customers that you have received the order reassures them that their information isn’t lost in cyberspace, and it gives you a chance to confirm that you’ve received the right information.

It’s also important to send a notification and confirmation when an order ships. Doing so accomplishes several things. Obviously, it lets your customer know to expect the shipment, but more importantly, it creates a paper trail that will protect you in the event that something goes awry. Even if you print postage at home and deliver the package to the shipping center or post office, a confirmation with a tracking number lessens your liability in the event the package is delayed or lost.

Other Opportunities for Communication

Acknowledging orders and sending shipping confirmations aren’t the only times to communicate with customers. Some other important times you need to reach out and touch someone include:

  • When you have questions about the shipping address. For example, your postage system may note that it’s incorrect or invalid, or something is missing
  • When there will be a shipping delay. Provide your best estimate as to when the item will ship, and offer other options or compensation to make up for the delay.
  • After the sale. You can request feedback and thank the customer for the purchase.

Of course, you should always respond promptly to customer inquiries and concerns and thank customers for their feedback when appropriate.

Effective Communication

Even if the only times you communicate with your customers is when you acknowledge the order and confirm shipping, that communication should be based around two words: thank you. Start and end every communication by thanking the customer for their business. Even if you are responding to a complaint, by staying positive and thanking the customer for their business and their feedback, you’re taking steps to maintain the relationship.

Your communication with customers should also make it clear that you value their communication and want to hear from them. Make it easy for customers to get in touch with you; include a link to a dedicated email address or feedback form to make it easy for them to send questions or concerns  and easy for you to find the messages that need a priority response.

A Word of Warning

While it might be tempting to send your customers marketing messages every time you communicate with them, don’t do it. For starters, if you’re selling via an online site such as Etsy, eBay or Amazon, you may be prohibited from doing so by the terms of service. More importantly, such a practice could be alienating. Instead, give your customers the opportunity to sign up for messages from you, and allow your polite, pleasant and appreciative order communications to help build your brand and attract and retain customers.


About the Author: Frances Yost is a blogger, Internet marketing consultant and entrepreneur who has managed several successful online retail stores over the last 15 years.


Working Smarter: Getting More from Your Business

Your small business is your baby, your child, something you’ve created from nothing – and everything its earned is the result of your sweat, blood and tears. As you start to take your business in new directions, and try to make greater profits; it’s not uncommon to find yourself protecting your small business from things that can change, or threaten the “purity” of its brand and mission – even if it ends up limiting what you can get for your business income wise. In this article we’ll take a look at how you can get more from your business, by letting go of some of your overprotective tendencies – and still keeping what you love about it strong as ever.


Let Others In – You’re Still in Control

As your business has grown, you’ve probably started to get a lot more “cooks in the kitchen” as more and more opinions are presented to you about the way you can manage the various facets of your company. It can be frustrating to even consider that someone else might try to tell you what to do with the thing that you’ve built from the ground up. How can they possibly know what to do better than you? What you have to realize is that input from others isn’t an admission of inferiority, and that you’ll end up coming to better conclusions on your own, the more outside opinions you consider. Take time to setup a meeting at least once per week if possible, to hear the feedback and opinions of people who work for and with you – you won’t regret it for a second.

Invest More in Marketing

Even if you’re investing a small amount of money in marketing your small business, chances are you’ve limited your spend based on protecting yourself from the risk of a larger investment. You may think this is being prudent, and you’re just being responsible with the limited funds that you have. Sure this may be true, but have you ever wondered how much profit you may be missing by not investing in the marketing that will bring in real, high-volume business? If you want your business to deliver more profit to your pocket, you need to make the investments that will make a difference. Consider a tailored marketing campaign like direct mail. Target your best customers by customizing each print piece with their unique name, business logo – or even preferred set of products. Variable Data Digital Printing makes all of this possible, and offers you the opportunity to increase the spend of your customers by marketing to them on a targeted level. This is just one example of how you can grow your business by investing more in your marketing; but no matter the approach, you need to increase it sooner or later.

Eliminate Waste: the Easiest Way to Save Money

How Businesses Create Opportunities For The Community

Businesses are the essential driving force behind the US, and the global, economy. The private sector has a massive role to play in the lives we lead, from the way we shop for groceries or a new gas supplier, through to the latest tech gadgets and inventions that are undeniably changing our world. These are areas where the private sector performs well, and in the process, helps shape the way we live and the choices we make. But business, far from being a negative thing, is actually one of the most positive contributors to the wider community in our country – not only in the sense of the goods and services they provide for consumers, but also in the various socially responsible ways they interact with their local communities.


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Perhaps one of the most obvious benefits businesses bring to an area is the opportunity of employment, with Kansas City jobs in particular in big demand. Unemployment is a personal tragedy for every person it afflicts, let alone their families and dependents. Businesses create new jobs, and help reduce the number of families who are unemployed in the process. This creates a community that is more confident about its abilities, and has more money to spend by virtue of the increasing productivity of the local labor market. In this sense, it is crucial to encourage new businesses to start, in order to provide these opportunities for others.

When a business starts up, it needs to find suppliers and service providers for its own needs. Furthermore, new businesses will be needed to cater to the needs of new staff members, and the cycle continues until a thriving economy is born, fuelled by businesses creating wealth and opportunity. Businesses don’t just create opportunities for themselves and for their own, but also for existing businesses, and the organizations they serve. This means there is a ripple effect caused by a new business starting or moving to town, where the money created from the new business spreads out.
A big issue for most business owners, tax revenues are one of the primary ways companies can give back to their community. This money will be notionally used to good ends, funding various government departments, services and programs. Businesses contribute a huge amount to the local and national economy through the tax burden they bear. This extends beyond corporation tax to include tax paid on any purchases, and a variety of other tax changes that have affected small businesses.

Businesses do much of their giving back through providing opportunities for employment, and through paying the substantial taxes they are required by law to contribute. But businesses also often go one step further, doing charity work of their own accord to cement their local reputation for being a caring, socially aware brand. Some employers allow staff to run charity fundraisers and events, as part of boosting their team morale. Companies build schools, invest in sporting schemes for kids, and generally back a range of solid, strong, charitable causes every year.


Aside from the aforementioned fundraising activities, there are a number of ways in which businesses can give back to organizations in need of charitable assistance. For example, there are plenty of charities that will accept a car or boat donation as well as money. Employees can donate a boat for charity in the name of the business and make a positive impact in the office as well as the rest of the world. The list of charities that accept these types of donations, such as a boat, is surprisingly long, so it is definitely worth investigating.

When businesses start up, or move to a new location, the whole area achieves the benefit of a bump from the experience. Businesses can bring new customers to an area, with money in their pockets to spend, while also shaping how a community develops. For example, a café may have a strong community role to play by virtue of its location, history or staffing. In this example, here is a business having a role that extends way beyond its original purpose of making money.

People can all too quickly associate private business with profit and therefore greed. This is unhelpful, given the power of money to change communities and provide much better resources for those who need them most. While shareholders may profit directly from a company’s success, the local community benefits massively from this kind of event, with new customers buying from their businesses as a result. Snapping up and renovating old buildings is another example of where companies can deliver a public good – just because there is a profit motive doesn’t mean businesses are any less concerned with the best solution for the community.

Business creates opportunity through delivering direct and indirect employment, while generating huge sums in tax revenues, which can be applied to funding schools, social projects and the military. Our economy needs businesses for the jobs they deliver, the services and products they produce, and the investments they make in our local communities.