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Types of Criminal Background Checks Available for Pre-Employment

March 22, 2017

Understanding the various types of criminal background checks currently available will help your organization in the pre-employment screening process. A thorough background check helps prevent your organization from hiring someone who poses a risk to workplace safety. Recognizing the current background checks available to you also prevents limiting the amount of criminal history information you need to accurately screen applicants. Here are some of the sources available to you for pre-employment screening. 

County-Level Background Checks

When you request a county-level background check on an applicant, the check will examine local jurisdictions where an applicant resides. The investigation includes any county criminal history records over the past seven years. However, you can request searches that date back 10 to 15 years or more. Compliant county-level checks include any misdemeanor or felony arrests and should filter out the records not reportable under federal and state law. Criminal record searches at the county level should inspect records at the county’s courthouse or through repositories with a direct relationship with the state. 

Statewide Background Checks

A statewide background check searches repositories for records on any misdemeanor or felony arrests on your applicants. However, some states do not allow the distribution of both misdemeanor and felony records. In this instance, you may want to request all of your background checks at the county level. Although state background checks are critical to some of your pre-employment screening, it may not provide enough information to accurately screen a potential employee. 

Federal Background Checks

A federal background check investigates whether or not an applicant faced criminal prosecution or convictions at the federal level. Federal crimes include fraud, embezzlement, tax evasion or mail and wire fraud. If your organization deals with finance or any field related to money, a federal background check is a smart choice. Most agencies conduct their federal checks at the district level where the U.S. government prosecutes cases. 

Sex Offender Registry Search

Several websites offer sex offender registry searches to help you determine if an applicant is a registered sex offender. In 1996, the federal government passed a law requiring the attorney general to institute a national database designed to track the movements and whereabouts of sexual offenders. The FBI currently manages the National Sex Offender’s Registry, known as the NSOR. The NSOR maintains any information regarding a registered sex offender’s crimes, current address, date of conviction and date when an offender registered as a sex offender. 

Civil Courts

You can request a review of an applicant’s involvement in any civil cases, which include breach of contract, product liability, any frivolous lawsuits filed by the applicant and other civil records. By determining if an applicant has a history of filing frivolous lawsuits, you can protect your organization from many legal actions by removing applicants with a history of civil actions in their background information. 

Other types of pre-employment background checks include obtaining an applicant’s driving record, federal bankruptcy records, international background screenings or a prohibited and restricted parties search. The selection of background checks will help you hire the best talent and avoid unknowingly exposing your organization to risk. 

Business

The Most Important Stages of Planning a Conference You should Know about

March 3, 2017

Whilst planning a meeting (especially an informal one) is generally easy and straightforward, planning a conference is an altogether different matter. You probably have to contend with a greater number of participants, for one. Secondly, you may have to plan the conference in a big venue, which entails additional time and effort (especially if you have to make an ocular inspection). If you want your conference to be successful, you’d have to plan it at least a few months in advance. Here’s what you should know about the most important stages of planning a conference.

Selecting the team

First of all, identify and set up the team who will be planning the conference with you. After all, you can’t do it alone. This group will be responsible for fulfilling the different roles and responsibilities associated with the conference, and the number of team members will often depend on how big your conference will be. Once you have determined the conference team, schedule a meeting so you can lay out your goals and objectives and prepare the specifications of the project. At this meeting, you should also lay out your budget. The budget should include the venue, equipment, catering, transportation, accommodation for guests, entertainment, etc. You should also agree on a specific timeline and deadlines for tasks and responsibilities.

The second stage

The second stage of planning a conference would be looking for the right venue. Prepare a checklist for the type of venue you are looking for, including specifics on what you require from the venue. If you need a venue which can provide your guests with accommodations (such as a conference venue Midlands like Heythrop Park, which has both the Crowne Plaza hotel and Heythrop Park Resort), then note this down. Check different venues and ask for proposals from each. Remember to check the venue’s availability and the availability of your key speakers. This is also the time to prepare your visual aids and other materials, such as handouts and presentations.

The third stage

Once you have gone through different prospective venues and found the one you like, confirm and book it. At this stage, you should also confirm your guests’ attendance and confirm arrangements for transportation, catering, accommodation, social activities, and entertainment. Make it a point to check the computer and audio visual equipment you need as well.

The fourth stage

The fourth stage is where you arrive at the venue (make sure you arrive at least a day earlier than the participants). Do a last-minute check of all the elements – the meeting rooms, the equipment, the catering and entertainment, and so on. You should also make sure that someone is assigned to man the entrance of the venue so participants will be properly greeted and settled in.

Business

4 Things You Must Know Before Choosing an Oxford Web Design Company

February 24, 2017

Designing an effective website for your Oxford business can be tough – which is why you are looking for a professional web designer to handle the job. A web designer does the hard work so you don’t have to. It is an effective solution so you end up with a website that works hard for your business.

But choosing a web designer is not something you can rush into. If you pick a person or firm that is not a good fit for your needs you end up spending money, and experiencing stress, that you don’t need. To start you on the process of deciding on the best designer for your needs, here are the things you need to consider before you make your shortlist.

  1. The Company’s Experience

It is important to know that the web designer or company you are looking at has enough experience in design, and is well-established so that you know you will get a good service. A good number of years in business mean that a web design company is familiar with all aspects of web design and has happy clients. A well-established firm means that they will be familiar with working to deadlines and can communicate well with clients. You could also ask how many clients they have, and how many employees, as well as discovering how many years in business.

  1. The Cost

Oxford web design companies vary in price, and you shouldn’t be surprised if you are quoted different amounts by different people. There is the temptation to immediately go for the cheapest option, but when it comes to something like web design this can be a false economy. The cheapest sites almost always come without any customisation or consultation, and you will be left with an out-of-the-box site that may work but which will not enhance your business’s reputation. Of course, you always need to work within a budget but it is worth remembering that you get what you pay for in many cases.

  1. The Method of Update

Find out whether you can update the site yourself as you get new content or want to edit existing content. This will be through what the web designer calls the content management system (CMS). You need a CMS that you, or the person working on the website on a day to day basis, can easily navigate and use.

  1. The Level of Support

This is especially important if you are looking for a website with complex elements, or you want to design something bespoke. A good website is many-layered, and if there is something you don’t understand you need to be able to speak to someone or have your concerns resolved. A good web designer allows for open communication between the two of you.

Business

Thailand Virtual Offices: What You Need to Know

February 7, 2017

Thailand is a place which is full of opportunity; be it travel adventures, culinary delights, or corporate ventures. It is a beautiful destination and a great place to spend time. However, it can be a rather tricky prospect for business owners. The law states that only US nationals can own 100% of a foreign company.

So, if you’re not from the US and you want to set up a business in Thailand, you need to find a trusted local associate. Otherwise, you’ll be handing over a significant proportion of your company. It can be a tricky process and it is enough to discourage some entrepreneurs, but there are ways to keep things running smoothly while you figure it out.

For example, you could stay in contact with your colleagues and employees by working out of a virtual office in the corporate district of Bangkok. Keep reading to find out about the benefits of virtual office solutions.

What Is a Virtual Office?

The concept is very simple, though it is still a relatively new one for most businesses. Instead of investing in a full-time private lease, virtual users pay to access a ‘ready to go’ workspace. It takes the form of a fairly large (usually open plan) environment, which contains printers, receptionists, broadband, cleaners, air conditioning and anything else you might need.

This complete package is available at a flat rate fee. Terms vary – some providers charge weekly or monthly and others by the hour – but the aim is to offer an optimised workspace. Click here to find out more about virtual offices located in the centre of Bangkok. These facilities are cheap and they’ll allow you to claim a prestigious corporate address.

Where Can I Find a Virtual Office?

There are a number of serviced office facilities in central Bangkok. Addresses include eminent locations such as the Park Ventures Ecoplex, The Offices at CentralWorld, and Silom Road. These are all impressive spots where long-term leases sell for substantially higher than the rates on a virtual suite.

Having a good corporate address is important, particularly in a place like Thailand where a lot of value is placed on status and industry connections. In many ways, it’s a kickstart to your reputation; a kind of shortcut move which earns you a lot of positive attention fast. Make sure that the facility you choose is also close to transport links and other urban amenities.

Why Should I Use Virtual Offices?

There are some major advantages to using virtual offices, particularly if you are a young company or an entrepreneur. When you’re just starting out, it’s usually a matter of finding money to invest in the future of the business before you’ve actually made any. This is tough and, if the first few years don’t go as smoothly as expected, it can leave you in debt.

Virtual offices minimise this risk because you’re paying for a full suite of corporate tools, but you’re not leasing it outright. You’re not responsible for anything beyond paying the weekly or monthly fees to access it. So, if a heater breaks, you don’t have to fix it. If the HVAC system needs cleaning, it’s not your money that pays for it.

The overheads are very low and the degree of flexibility is high. You don’t have to commit to using shared workspaces like these forever. The beauty of operating without a lease is that you can make changes anytime that you want. Virtual offices are the future of collaborative enterprise; they’re cheap, highly efficient, and they make success simple.  

Business

How the Workplace Environment Affects Conveyor Belts

January 12, 2017

Conveyor belts are an integral part of many industries and have been so for more than a century now. From food waste processing to uranium mining, these belts and their heavy duty chains have kept the wheels of industry and supply going. There’s always the odd breakdown, of course, but in general, a well-maintained conveyor belt will give years of faithful service to its users.

It’s not just about the maintenance, though. There are environmental factors in every workplace that will affect the lifespan and the performance of every machine, not just the conveyor belt. There are extreme conditions, like intense cold or sharp rubble, as well as seemingly more benign environments, like food preparation or recycling, that can take their toll on the belt and its underlying machinery.

Here are just a few of the different workplace conditions that can affect the life of a conveyor belt.

Intense cold

Conveyor belts that are used in very cold areas of the world, or in refrigerated workplaces are subject to stresses that you might not realise. Industries in areas like Northern Canada and the far North of Europe often have to keep going at temperatures of minus 35C or even lower. Under these conditions, it’s easy for conveyor belts to lose their flexibility and even crack, so it’s vital to use materials that can maintain flexibility. It’s also possible for lubricants to solidify, or become too viscous to work properly, so specialist compounds have to be applied. If the belt is outdoors, it can also be subject to sudden temperature changes, which can cause excessive expansion and contraction, potentially leading to fractures and jams.

Intense heat

At the other end of the scale are the belts which have to work in desert areas, or in heavy industries like iron smelting or ceramics. These belts have to operate in temperatures ranging anywhere from 50C right up to 1,000C in the case of kiln belts. Thankfully, there are materials, including tough steel and specialised rubber compounds, that can withstand these extreme conditions and maintain performance.

Food production

A food factory might seem like a far cry from an iron foundry or a sub-zero fishery in the frozen north, but even this environment has its hazards for the conveyor belt. One of the biggest culprits is the oil and fat used in food, which can, over time, damage the rubber or interfere with the lubricants. There’s also food acids, like citric acid or vinegar, that can seep out of the food and slowly degrade rubber or metal. It’s important to keep the belt as clean as possible at all times to slow down this process.

Dust, salt and sand

Coastal areas, as well as desert or dry areas, also present problems. A conveyor belt near the sea may have to contend with salt spray, which can speed up the rusting process. If salt dries on a belt it may become abrasive, whereas dust and sand already are abrasive, as well as very pervasive! A belt made of a highly resistant, layered material is what’s needed here, as well as tough, coated steel and regular lubrication.

Business

Creating Professional Social Media Campaigns

November 28, 2016

Over the past few years, lots of businesses have turned to social media as the preferred platform to market their business. Since these businesses can reach their desired demographics and more potential clients through social media, it makes more financial sense for them to use social media instead of traditional marketing tools.

If you’re interested in creating a professional social media campaign, here are a few things you need to do to make it successful.

Plan

Like everything else in life, the best way to have a successful campaign is to have a plan. You need to understand the market you are trying to capture and figure out the most efficient way to do it so you don’t have to spend a lot of money.

As an example, if you are going with a video campaign, TV advert production costs will be quite expensive. In this situation, you can either spend the money for the TV advert if you feel it is very important to the campaign and can help you get new clients. You can also decide to save some money by doing the video yourself.

The beauty of social media is that a well done amateur video can actually help your business more than a video done by professionals because the video has a great chance of going viral, which will help draw more attention to your business.

Assemble a great team

One of the misconceptions people make when it comes to social media campaigns, is that they believe younger employees that are active on social media know what they are doing and can help market their business.

The fact that an employee is very active on social media doesn’t make them a professional, so you need to have a team that has marketing experience to make sure the campaign is properly run.

Choose the right platform

Before starting your marketing campaign, you need to figure out what social media platform your desired demographic use more. You should also have a secondary platform to help reach as many of your targets as possible.

Once you have settled on your platform, you should make sure you have team members that will help get the message out through the chosen platforms, and answer any questions potential clients have.

You can track the number of people visiting your site and the social media platform used through Google Analytics.

Keep everything updated

One of the quickest ways to lose customers or scare of potential customers is having a website or social media account that isn’t updated regularly. People on the outside will assume you’re either not professional or are out of business if there are no recent updates on your social media accounts or websites.

Business

5 Tips for Starting Your Own Business

August 6, 2016

Starting a business is both exciting and terrifying at the same time because you finally get to be your own boss, and you also have to worry about the business being successful. One of the reasons that a lot of businesses fail in the first year is because the people that start the businesses don’t do their due diligence.

If you want your business to be successful, these are five tips that people starting their own business should know.

5. Never Use Your Own Money.

A big reason why businesses fail quickly is because the owner used their personal funds to start the business, which led to the business closing because they couldn’t afford to keep it open. Don’t get it wrong, there are some instances where self-funded businesses have been successful, but the smart thing to do in this situation is to either get a business loan, or find investors who believe in your idea, that way you can focus on the business itself instead of worrying about the bills that are piling up.

4. Proper Marketing.

Another mistake people make when it comes to marketing their new business is their insistence on hiring advertising companies to market for them. While these companies are successful in helping companies grow, they are also expensive, and most honestly don’t know how to properly market a small business. When starting out, you don’t need to hire the top marketing company to help advertise your business, instead, you should consider guerilla marketing tactics, which simply means doing it the old fashioned way. Hand out fliers, advertise on social media, and ask customers to pass on the word about their experience with your business.

3. Hire The Right People. 

If you are going into a business, it is always a good idea to hire people who have a lot of experience in the field. By hiring someone that knows what they are doing, you won’t have to spend as much time training them because they already have an idea of what the business is all about.

2. Identify Your Market.

One of the most important things in business is knowing who you are trying to sell to. Before you rent a space for your business, you should make sure the location is ideal for the market you are trying to corner. For example, a college textbook store close to a university campus will be more successful than one located close to the beach.

1. Have a Business Plan.

Before starting a business, you should have a detailed plan on what your business is about and how you intend to make it successful. Your business plan is very important because it is what will determine if you get a loan or if you can attract investors, so make sure you go over every detail and are ready to answer any questions your investors might have.

Business

Boeing Expects Big Rise in Demand of Airplanes in India

August 6, 2016

On Tuesday, the Boeing Corporation sounded excited about the progress going on in the Indian aviation sector, which is the fastest growing in the world in terms of traffic. The company said India will need as many as 1,800 new airplanes, which will be worth close to $265 billion in 20 years.

Last year, the aircraft manufacturer predicted that India would have a demand for 1,740 new planes, which were valued at $240 billion in 20 years.

According to Dinesh Keskar, the senior Vice-President for Asia Pacific and India, for the Boeing Corporation, the expected rise in demand will be driven by planes like the Next-Generation 737s, the 737 Max, and the A320 Neos made by Boeing’s rival Airbus.

Keskar made the comment while speaking to reporters during the release of Boeing’s current market outlook for India report.

While attempting to break down the demand for the reporters, Keskar said that single aisle airplanes are at the top of the list because they are the most used planes in India. There is a demand for about 1,560 single aisle airplanes, which are worth about $180 billion.

After the single aisle planes, the second most in demand planes are the 280 wide-body planes, they carry over 200 passengers and are worth around $85 billion. Regional 10 seater jets make up 90 units of the demand and have a value of $1 billion.

According to the report, India will contribute to over 4.6% of the global demand for airplanes by 2035, when the demand is expected to be 39,620. India will also contribute about 4.5% of the demand in terms of value.

Keskar added that the new planes will support growth of low cost carriers, while replacing the older ones. Keskar attributed Boeing’s outlook to the new aviation policy, low fuel prices, and favorable demographics in India.

Keskar said the strong commercial aerospace market in India and the fact that the country has the highest domestic traffic growth in the world, are a couple of reasons for the high demand.

Domestic travel in India has been steadily improving over the years, and air travel grew 18.8% from last year to this year, which is the fastest in the world.

The traffic has been so much that the popular airlines in the country are ordering new planes to keep up with the demand. Earlier this month, GoAir ordered 72 A320neo planes, while IndiGo placed an order for 240 planes from Airbus.

India is currently projected to be the third largest aviation market in the world after the United States and China by 2026.