What Are the Benefits of Doing a Background Check on Your Employees?

If you have someone who you are looking to hire, you know how important it is to get this decision right. After all, you are probably going to have a lot of people from which to choose. Therefore, you need to find the right fit for your company. In addition to learning about their technical expertise and people skills, you also need to find out more about their prior history. That is where a national background check is helpful. When you are performing a background check, what are a few things you are looking for? There are a few key tips that you should keep in mind.

You Will Find Someone Who Fits Your Company Culture

Company culture is more important today than it has ever been in the past. Therefore, if you are looking to hire someone, you need to find someone who fits with the culture of your company. After all, if you do not find someone who fits with the culture of your company, it will disrupt your workflow. A background check can help you find the right person for the culture at your company. Take the time to review the background check carefully and make sure you find someone who fits with the current culture of your company, whatever that might be.

You Can Find Out More About Potential Liability Issues

You also need to think about your potential liability issues. You also need to find someone who will not create any additional liability issues for your company. As an example, if you have commercial vehicles, you need to find someone who will not place your cars or trucks in harm’s way. Furthermore, if someone gets involved in a car accident and it is the fault of your driver, you could be held liable for any injuries as well. Therefore, you need to find someone who will not create any additional liability problems for your company.

You Can Protect Your Current Employees

You need to make sure you keep your current employees safe. If you bring someone into your work environment, you want to make sure that person is not going to place your existing employees at risk. If the individual has a long history of violent crimes, you might end up placing your employees in a vulnerable spot. You need to do your due diligence when you are trying to find the right person. You should always place the health and safety of your current staff at the top of the list. That is where a background check can be helpful.

You Can Set Your Company up for Success in the Future

You should also think about the future of your company when you are looking for a potential hire. There is a saying that it is hard to find good help these days. The good news is that as long as you are willing to do your research, you can find the right person for the job. Even though you certainly need to find someone with the right experience for the job, you also need to take a closer look at someone’s personal history as well. The right background check can do exactly that. If you take a closer look at the background of each candidate, you will be able to find the right person to set your company up for success in the long run.

Find the Right Hire for Your Company

These are a few of the most important points you need to keep in mind if you are looking for a new employee. It is a difficult task to find the right person for your open position. Even though it can take a lot of work, you need to do your research when you are trying to find a new employee. If you take the time to do the work at the front end, you will set your company up for success at the back end. One of the tools you need to use to find the right person for the job is a background check. The more you know about a candidate, the easier the choice will be.


7 Ways to Improve Employee Morale

Did you know that, just in the United States, a reported 85% of people hate going to work each day? If you own a business, employee satisfaction should be one of your top priorities.

So, how can you go about boosting employee morale? And what are some things that you can do to show your team members that you see and appreciate them working so hard?

In this article, we’ll tell you about 7 things that you can do to boost employee morale. That way you can pick a few of them and apply them to your business, making everyone at your office much happier to come to work each day.

  1. Pay Your Employees Well

Let’s be honest. While there are tons of things that you can do to keep employees happy, most of them won’t matter if your team members feel like they aren’t being paid fairly. As upper management, we recommend that you take things a step further, too, and pay your employees a bit more than what is considered fair.

By doing this, you remove any issues that could come due to the number at the bottom of their paychecks. You also show them how much you value their contributions to the team, which of course is a good thing.

  1. Offer Good-to-Great Benefits

For smaller businesses, offering good-to-great benefits can be tough. After all, those benefits cost money, which can be hard to fit into your budget if you’re a smaller business with only a few employees.

But, if you can manage to swing it, strong pay, combined with good benefits, is a big key to employee happiness. So, if you aren’t already doing so, look into adding more benefits for your team members soon.

  1. Create Personal Relationships

Of course, solid pay and a 401k aren’t the only things you can do to show your employees how much you care. In fact, creating personal relationships with your employees is not only effective, but it’s arguably the easiest thing to do on this list.

We’ll be honest. To do this successfully, you actually have to create personal relationships with your team members. Trying to force or fake it won’t work, as your employees will see right through your intentions.

But if you can manage to establish some genuine relationships, you can make coming to work everyday much more enjoyable for everyone. On top of that, your team members will be more productive and reliable, which is an added bonus.

  1. Create a Strong Office Layout

Do all of your employees work together under one roof? If the answer is yes, we recommend that you focus heavily on your office layout.

A strong, open office floor plan will make working together and engaging with one another more enjoyable. That, combined with things like natural light and bright decor, will help you create a working environment that your team will thrive in.

The best part? If your office isn’t already like this, it’s a good excuse to change things up and redecorate. That alone can make coming into work feel new and exciting again for so many of your team members.

  1. Hang Out Away From the Office

Even if your office layout is perfect, sometimes it’s good to get away so everyone can get a break from the same working environment. Doing things like having outdoor meetings at a local park, or going out for a company lunch, are a great way to get out of the office while still spending quality time together with your team.

A pro tip? Try to find one or two days a month where you can get outside the office with your employees. Doing things that aren’t work-related, like bowling or laser tag, can be a great way to build some better team chemistry as well.

  1. Celebrate All Victories Together

Every day someone on your team does something that is worth recognizing out loud in front of everyone. Sure, not all of those accomplishments are game-changing accomplishments that take the company to a new level.

But no victory is too small to acknowledge, which is what we recommend you try to do daily.

Our advice? Have morning meetings with your team where you acknowledge some of the wins from the previous day. That way you’re not only starting off the day on a positive note, but you’re encouraging people to do their best each day, which is a huge positive.

  1. Be Flexible and Understanding

It’s important to remember that your employees are real people with their own unique lives and problems. So, no matter how much they enjoy coming to work each day, things are going to pop up from time to time.

When those moments come up, try to be flexible and understanding. Your employees will appreciate it, and you’ll be making a positive impression on them at that moment, too.

If you notice team members struggling in certain areas, try to help them out by getting them some training. And if you yourself are still struggling with communicating with your team members, this training could be quite helpful to you.

Still Need Help Boosting Employee Morale?

Remember, boosting employee morale is as simple as treating your employees well and showing them that you care about them in a few different ways. No matter how small your business is, or what your budget is like, you should be able to do a few of these things on this list and create a better working environment.

Looking for more ways you can take your business to the next level? Check back with our blog often!


5 Leadership Lessons to Share

Whether you’re training up-and-coming leaders in your organization or conducting student leadership training, you’ll need some content to base your training around. Here are a few lessons to base your leadership training around.

Set the Tone

One of the best lessons you can teach leaders to work through is learning how to set the tone for their team or organization. In order to keep a positive, cohesive work atmosphere, leaders must have a can-do, team-oriented and positive attitude themselves. By setting an example, others will know which characteristics to emulate. Positivity is contagious.

Respect Team Members

Although all leaders should expect team members to respect them, the best leaders know that respect gets respect. Good leaders should follow the Golden Rule: treat others as they wish to be treated. Even though it might seem cliché, this is a major key to developing effective teams. One primary way that leaders can communicate respect is by praising in public and correcting in private. Leaders can also respect their team members by seeking (and acting on) feedback on their leadership style.

Communicate Expectations

Just like communication is invaluable in relationships, great leaders know how to maintain clear communication of needs, expectations and goals of those they lead. Employees or team members should never have to guess at what is expected of them: they should know exactly what they should be doing (and how to do it) in order to be an effective team player.

Hold Everyone Accountable

Good leaders know the secret of maintaining high-quality work: they hold everyone accountable, themselves included. Setting expectations is the first step, following through with those expectations is the second. When leaders communicate clear expectations and follow up with logical consequences (positive or negative), team members can become confident in their roles.

Make Room for Fun

Nobody likes a workplace that’s stuffy and serious all the time. Excellent leaders make space for appropriate fun and memorable activities with their team. Perhaps this might translate to something really special, like a company gala or dinner, or maybe it’s as simple as meeting for drinks after work once in a while. Leaders who provide opportunities for their team members to connect and enjoy one another’s company generally have happier workers when Monday morning rolls around again.

When training new leaders, it’s important to share lessons like these with them. By communicating strategies for effective leadership, you can be sure to develop a whole host of effective leaders in your organization.


Getting Started with Process Improvement

One of the main terms batted around in business today, process improvement, sounds straightforward, but it confuses many people. A common misconception assumes that process improvement only works in manufacturing, but the service industry can also use process improvement.

Some implementations for process improvement bury obtaining managerial support as the third step or lower, but in truth, the edict to conduct process improvement should come from the managerial level or C-level. Steering organizational change and process changes should come from the top levels and flow downward as tasks.

  1. You must define your existing processes before you can improve them. This means writing down each process, step-by-step. The ideal method for this is to watch the process occur and write each step-down. Create detailed flow diagrams.
  2. Analyze the current process to identify bottlenecks. You might do this by using operational surveys, process mapping, or cause/effect analysis.
  3. Strategize the improvements. This means you list the broken process steps, the reason for improving them, and the financial resources needed.
  4. Develop improvement objectives. You need numeric objectives. This means you need an existing metric to which you can compare the improved process efficacy.
  5. Implement improvements to the processes. The challenge will be to improve broken or problematic processes without causing a decrease in quality. The other main challenge is to alleviate delays while improving.
  6. Improving processes results in saving money. You also enhance product quality, reduce waste, and create an improved user experience.

While the steps above provide a generic method, you might use specific business philosophies such as kaizen, Six Sigma, or Plan-Do-Check-Act Cycle. If you choose the Japanese method of kaizen, you will need someone observing the manufacturing floor at all times to make constant, small improvements that increase productivity and make it easier and safer for workers to do their jobs. While no process is ever improvement complete, kaizen requires day-to-day work while the other process methods use an iteration approach. You might implement them every six months or annually.

Software such as that available at can help you create the plan and the analysis plus simplify the process by assisting with organizing the information. By providing prompts within the program, the software can simplify the process. This contributes to the strategy process, too, but does not replace management and engineers studying potential improvement solutions. The software helps you, but it does not conduct the process improvement for you.

One of the main terms batted around in business today, process improvement, sounds straightforward, but it confuses many people. A common misconception assumes that process improvement only works in manufacturing, but the service industry can also use process improvement. Some implementations for process improvement bury obtaining managerial support as the third step or lower but in truth, the edict to conduct process improvement should come from the managerial level or C-level. Steering organizational change and process changes should come from the top levels and flow downward as tasks.


Rising Higher Education Costs

Millennials and those belonging to Generation Z are paying exorbitant prices for higher education, and the ROI is questionable. In the modern era, college after high school is something that parents, educators, and even peers stress throughout adolescence. The American Dream is a locked door, and a college diploma acts as the key to bringing this dream to life. While college costs appear to be rising every year, the quality of education does not seem to warrant these price hikes. With this said, as the economy begins to undergo drastic changes, one must consider if attending college and being crushed by student debt is the right path.

Weighing the Opportunity Costs

People who graduate from college are more likely to receive higher salaries over the course of a career. However, with the current state of the economy, they also run the risk of being underemployed for an extended period and become consumed by debt obligations. Students who are taking four or five years out of life to educate themselves are expecting to see returns in the short-term. If you choose to attend college, it would be wise to seek financial guidance and create an action plan. There are professionals such as Don Gayhardt who can guide teenagers or young adults online.

Conversely, some young adults are now choosing vocational schools or completely forgoing college altogether. Many people are becoming aware of the economy on the horizon and do not wish to be stuck with majors that will add little value to society. Vocational schools are becoming more popular again because specific skills provide returns faster without the accompanying debt. Getting into the workplace and gaining experience sooner is something to think about when considering the rising higher education costs.

Receiving Student Aid

There is currently a small percentage of American households that can pay for college out of pocket. For the rest of the population, student aid helps to cover the majority of collegiate expenses. Scholarships are also used to alleviate these expenditures, but only the highest performing students receive full-ride awards. The student loan bubble has continued to expand as college costs continue to rise and the coveted diploma’s value remains the same. When deciding on the type of aid you need, it is essential to understand the difference between subsidized and unsubsidized loans. Subsidized loans provide students with at least a bit of relief since interest costs are covered while attending college or if you defer your loan payments. On the other hand, unsubsidized loans begin accruing interest from the moment they are in your possession.

A new payment option has become quite popular overseas and has is only available at a few domestic institutions. Students now have the opportunity to pledge a portion of all income made after graduation for an extended period instead of taking out loans. Fortunately, if you run into a jobless stretch, the plan is paused until work resumes again. With rising educational costs, society is doing its best to provide a reasonable path toward graduation still.


How Does the Finance/Accounting Job Market Look in San Francisco, CA for 2018?

Looking for finance or accounting jobs in San Francisco? According to some experts, San Francisco is one of the best cities for finding a job in 2018, but does this hold true for the financial sector as well? Here are some things you should know about the finance job market in The Golden City for 2018.

Occupational Projections

According to the State of California Employment Development Department, the financial job market is expected to remain strong and enjoy steady growth in San Francisco from now through 2024. It’s estimated that 245 financial manager job openings will be added each year for the next six years. Other occupations in the financial industry are expected to see even greater growth, including financial analysts, credit counselors and personal financial advisors.

Currently, the job outlook for accountants and auditors is good in San Francisco, with over 6,000 job openings currently available. The median annual income for accountants and auditors in San Francisco is $84,672. The median income for financial analysts is $120,458.

Educational Requirements

Finance recruiters in the Bay area are typically looking for candidates with at least some college experience. Entry-level professionals working in accounting, auditing and bookkeeping areas may be able to find a job without a college degree. Higher-level financial positions typically require at least a Bachelor’s degree.

Find Your Ideal Job

Whether you currently live in San Francisco or you’re planning to move there to pursue professional opportunities, you should know the finance and accounting market is healthy. There are plenty of current job openings to apply for and opportunities for industry growth in the coming years. To help you locate potential employers, consider joining a local staffing company in San Francisco. Beacon Resources is a reputable employment agency that regularly matches up hiring managers with potential job candidates. To find out how their process works, fill out their online form.


Increase Your Career Influence by Taking a Credit Management Course

Because companies have concerns about their bottom lines, people who are collectors or who are involved in the commercial credit field are well-revered. So, if you are currently in this line of work, you can enhance your effectiveness by taking a credit management course.

For example, if you work as a collector, you may consider taking a course on cash collection by phone, or if you work in the commercial credit field, you may want to enhance your skills by taking a course in managing commercial credit risk.

Learn the Fine Art of Persuasion

The course in cash collection by phone enables you to optimise the use of the phone for collection purposes. The interactive educational programme helps delegates learn about the art of persuasion whilst attempting to collect on an account. By taking this course then, you can turn a reason for a non-payment into an actual payment, thereby helping you immeasurably in your collection work.

You can obtain training and take credit management courses by referring to such training facilities as Credit Management Training LTD. This type of resource will make it possible for you to make strides in a collections career. For example, the objectives of the course are four-fold.

After taking the training, participants will be equipped to do the following:

  • Break through any resistance that stops payment and holds up the receipt of cash
  • Plan a collections strategy that is based on what is known about the customer
  • Use influencing factors to persuade a customer to pay an amount sooner
  • Close a call, feeling confident that a payment will be made

A Comprehensive Review

As you can see, this type of training will definitely assist you in your collections career. The training programmes offered by such facilities as Credit Management Training LTD focus on results. Therefore, the course content that is presented is fairly comprehensive.

For instance, in the training modules for the cash collection course, the content includes the following subjects:

  • Understanding the importance of the collector’s role
  • Behaviours and communications that reap results
  • Successful collection strategies
  • Various approaches for different types of customers
  • Using your influence to get a customer to pay
  • Different negotiation tactics
  • Asking all the right questions

You also will learn in the collections by phone course the steps needed to successfully close a call. First, you need to reach an agreement before effectively following up. You also need to inform the customer of your terms so that future payments can be improved.

As you can see, there is a lot to learn when you take on this type of training. However, this education is invaluable. Whether you are working hands-on or as a manager, this type of coursework can help you be more effective in the credit industry.

Whilst the collections and credit risk management courses are one-day training sessions, other courses are designed to last for one week. Regardless of your choice, any type of training will add to your success in pursuing a career in the credit field.


Important Things to Know about the I-9 Form

The gradually expanding economy has more companies hiring more people this year (2017). With each new employee brought on board, a company is obligated to complete the I-9 form and keep it with employee records for a specified amount of time. Failure to comply with I-9 rules could land a company in trouble for not verifying a worker’s eligibility for employment in the U.S.

The I-9 form is pretty standard fare for American employers. Still, you may have some questions about the form and its use. Below is a selection of the most important things that companies need to know about the I-9 form.

Its Purpose

The point of the I-9 forms is to verify the identity of new hires as well as their legal eligibility to work in this country. On its website, the IRS explains the purpose of the form as follows:

“Form I-9 is used for verifying the identity and employment authorization of individuals hired for employment in the United States.”

Employer Responsibilities

Employers have a legal responsibility to ensure that new hires complete the I-9 form regardless of whether they handle payroll in-house or subcontract to a payroll solutions provider, such as Dallas-based BenefitMall. However, employers do not have to file a completed I-9 forms to any particular agency. Rather, they must retain the forms for either three years following the date of hire or one year following employee termination, whichever is later.

Employee Responsibilities

New hires are required to furnish employers with sufficient documentation confirming their identities and work eligibility. Natural born and naturalized citizens can usually get away with something as simple as a driver’s license with a photo ID. All others will have to choose from a list of acceptable documents.

Government Authority

Various authorized government officials have the legal right to inspect I-9 forms and their accompanying documentation on demand. The law requires companies to make completed forms and documents available for inspection upon request.

Common I-9 Form Mistakes

BenefitMall reminds employers to be completely familiar with the I-9 form and its implications. They also encourage employers and their HR departments to carefully scrutinize forms to make sure they are completed correctly. Again, this applies whether payroll is done in-house or not.

Below are some of the most common mistakes employers make with I-9 forms:

  • Entering a date in section 2 of the I-9 form that does not match payroll records;
  • Failing to complete section 2 within three business days of the start of employment;
  • Failure to record relevant information about documents used to verify identity and eligibility; and
  • Failure of the employer or an authorized representative to sign the I-9 form.

Tips for Completing the Form

Completing and retaining I-9 forms is not complicated by any stretch of the imagination. Most employers will complete and file their forms without ever hearing from government agencies. Still, federal and state agencies do have the authority to inspect records at any time. Therefore, here are a few tips for completing forms:

  • Only use standard blue or black ink
  • Avoid using staples or hole punchers on documents
  • Ensure all information on forms is legible
  • Make sure any photocopies are equally legible
  • All sections should be completed – do not skip anything
  • Always use the most recent version of the form.

The I-9 form is part of hiring regardless of how payroll is processed. Some payroll processing companies can provide limited assistance to employers with these forms, but employers are ultimately responsible for verifying the identities and work eligibility of all new hires.


A Child Education Plan Can Be Used to Pay for Educational Costs in Singapore

When you invest in the acquirement of knowledge, you will receive the best returns for your money. Needless to say, parents in Singapore and other countries want to provide the best for their children. That is why it is never too early to save for your child’s education. Beginning a savings plan as soon as he or she is born can assist you in paying for your child’s future tertiary education.

Why You Need to Establish a Plan Now

It is important to make savings a priority as the goals your child sets may not be able to be met, educationally, in Singapore. If he or she wishes to continue their education overseas, then you will have to be prepared financially. Without proper financial planning, that future sum may be too hefty to meet.

Whilst future educational expenses may be high, establishing a savings plan may be the best gift you can give your children. After all, inflation does not even make allowances for education. Based on an inflationary rate of just over 1.5% yearly, it is not unreasonable to assume that your child’s educational costs will be substantially elevated by the time they enter university.

Inflation Never Takes a Holiday

Everything is put into perspective when you consider past hikes in tuition fees in Singapore. For instance, parents who look for child education plans in Singapore want to make sure their savings initiatives can meet increased future expenses. During 2015, for example, tuition fees in Singapore rose by as much as 8% in order to match rising costs. In addition, small increases in courses weighed heavily on people who did not plan and save ahead of time.

Whilst the aforementioned percentage may seem staggering, it still is the price that is paid for education in Singapore. If you have more than one child, you definitely need to establish education savings plans. In its most basic form, a savings plan for education is underwritten by an insurance company. A lump sum is then received upon maturity of the plan.

Working with a Financial Professional

Although this type of plan can be regarded as a savings initiative, it also permits insurers to see when a saved amount needs to mature and be used. By employing a fixed window, savings plan professionals can determine how much a child will need for his or her education and outline a portfolio.

Your premium rate for a savings plan is contingent on when you enrol. If you sign up early, you can reduce the amounts paid in premiums. Whilst a public university Singapore will allow parents to fund their child’s educational needs through the use of their CFP, you do not have this option if your child wants to study overseas.

Savings Plan Highlights

Regardless of what happens, you still need to make sure you have an education savings plan in place. Plan highlights include a cash benefit before the date of maturity and optional insurance riders. Savings are also formatted in 5, 10, or 15-year windows – all of which enables you to save at a comfortable pace.

Carefully consider your choices and be prepared. Start planning when your child is an infant to ensure his or her personal and financial security in life

Careers Real Estate

The Best Real Estate Jobs in Las Vegas

The recession in America hit many people quite hard and caused quite a bit of damage to the construction industry. Las Vegas in particular suffered during the recession. As companies lost money and went out of business, subdivisions and planned neighborhoods practically disappeared overnight. The city rebounded quite well and now has millions of people moving back every year. If you want a job that helps you make more money in the heart of this amazing Nevada city, you should take a look at some of the best jobs in the Vegas real estate market.

Real Estate Agent

If you love working with people and helping them find their perfect homes, you might do well as a real estate agent. These agents are the ones responsible for helping newcomers find homes they love and helping locals find new residences too. You’re responsible for meeting with both buyers and sellers, taking your clients on tours of homes for sale, making sure that everyone understands the buying process and advertising to find new clients. Some Vegas real estate agents specialize in the buying and selling of undeveloped land or commercial properties.

Home Appraiser

Your love of the real estate market may also help you work as a home appraiser. Appraisers are the ones who look at properties and determine how much each one is worth. They might appraise a house before a new owner obtains insurance, but they can also appraise homes as part of the sale process to let prospective buyers know how much those homes are actually worth. Appraisers can also look at commercial properties to help buyers know if the property is a deal and to give owners an idea of how much they should list those properties for on the market.

Property Management Expert

Las Vegas is home to a number of timeshares and rental homes. Property management companies do everything from look at prospective tenants for those properties to handling the upkeep of each one. Taking a Key property management Las Vegas course will teach you the basics of property management and help you find a job in this field. Property management companies often take over the maintenance of rental homes, resorts, timeshares and many other types of properties. The Las Vegas real estate market is hot, and there are some great jobs that are perfect for people just like you