Archives December 2016

Looking Beyond Sales with Travel Incentives

Travel and entertainment costs are one of the largest and most difficult to track leakage areas for any company. Often, despite writing and implementing strict travel policies, compliance fails to meet set goals. One innovative strategy companies are turning to is rewarding top compliance in a similar manner to traditional sales incentives, providing incentive travel opportunities to employees who stay within policy. For additional resources, you may be able to learn more at the The Traveller Inc. website.

Incentive travel takes many forms, ranging from pre-planned itineraries, to allocated travel funds and travel perks.

Pre-Planned Itineraries

The most commonly known form, the pre-planned itinerary, is typically a cruise or resort stay. By booking these in advance companies can great deals. Utilizing a reputable travel agency can also secure even lower rates by using group fares. This type of incentive is typically associated with a sales goal, for example, the top ten earners in a quarter. However, the model can be easily reworked as a compliance incentive by reviewing those individuals who saved the company the most on travel and entertainment costs. There are abundant tracking programs available for little or no cost where companies can track where an employee rejected a higher airfare in favor of a lower one, or used a cost comparison to verify if driving or flying would be more cost effective.

Allocated Travel Funds

Allocated travel funds can be rewarded with a similar savings goal model. However, these are not a specific, preplanned trip for top employees but rather a dollar to dollar point earning system. For instance, an employee saving the company 500 dollars on airfare may earn a 100 dollar air credit with the company’s preferred air carrier. This variation of policy adherence incentive works particularly well for larger companies where there may be individuals who, by nature of their job function, may not travel as often as others. This sort of adherence reward can be easily extended to include attendance or safety procedure adherence.

Travel Perks

Another travel incentive benefit often overlooked by companies, and at no cost to them, is working with a travel management company that negotiates with vendors (airlines, hotels and rental car companies) to allow the individual to collect travel perks such as upgrades if they book through the travel agency. Travel agencies have extensive quality control measures to ensure policy compliance. This sort travel incentive is of particular value to companies because it forces adherence and provides access to cost-saving strategies and reporting on exceptions in great detail.

Travel incentive programs have long been thought of a sales-oriented incentive only. However, with creative, strategic planning, a strong travel reward program can effectively lower leakage and promote company morale far outside of the sales team. For additional resources, you may be able to learn more at the The Traveller Inc. website.

The Future of Sheet Metal Fabrication Industry in Canada

Many Canadians believe that the current government is managing the economy quite well and that they are likely to see positive changes in their lives and businesses in the coming years. In the sheet metal fabrication industry, in particular, a lot of progress has been reported in the previous years and businessmen and other stakeholders are also optimistic about the future of the industry. 2017, for instance, is set to be a big year for the sheet metal fabrication industry, and the following are some of the top trends to look out for. You can learn additional information at Heather & Little.

The Internet of Things (IoT)One of the top drivers that will revolutionize any sector of the economy is the internet of things (IoT). Businesses, manufacturing plants, and offices that are connected to the internet have been proven to be smarter, more efficient and productive than those that are not connected. In the metal fabrication industry, some of the benefits that IoT will provide include predictive maintenance of equipment, decreased safety hazards, and increased chain visbility. In a nutshell, the metal fabrication industry will continue to rely on the many benefits that come with connectivity.

Automation

There is no doubt that a plethora of changes are already happening in the metal fabrication industry, but one that’s particularly changing the nature of the industry is automation. Automated production does not only stand well when it comes to process optimization but has also been proven to have upbeat impacts on cost reduction. In the coming years, metal fabrication jobs will become more intricate and will even involve the use of robots.

Investment in Research and Development (R&D)

R&D is critical, especially if you want to remain competitive in the industry you are in. Today, many businesses in Canada are doubling their R & D expenditure to drive growth and more are adopting a wide range of new technologies to expand their market reach. In future, the trend is expected to continue and more metal fabrication firms are going to scout for additional opportunities to grow and compete—so more innovations are expected to emerge in the industry.

Outsourcing

Many players in the manufacturing and engineering sectors in Canada have long been ardent consumers of outsourcing services because it provides employees with opportunities to focus on other tasks without the worry of being tied up with additional work. Despite the benefits, bigger percentage of firms have had bad experience with outsourcing and are shifting to fully managed sourcing solutions where one company is tasked with managing the entire supply chain process—right from the prototype, sourcing, shipping to door-to-door delivery.

Bottom Line

The above highlighted are just the proverbial tip of the iceberg when it comes to trends that are likely to dominate the sheet metal fabrication industry in 2017 and beyond. It is apparent that a number of factors will play a big role in shaping the future of this critical industry. You can learn additional information at Heather and Little.

Important Aspects of Flexographic Printing

Since it is basically a modern version of letterpress printing, flexography is a traditional printing technique that can be applied to almost every type of substrate, which gives it an edge over other methods of printing. Except for those who have been part of the paper industry’s custom printing aspect for a long time, printing is a mystery to many people, specifically when it comes to the flexographic printing process. People usually seek out custom printing after developing an idea for their paper order, and bringing that vision to life is the printers’ responsibility. However, the person or company placing the order might not know the details involved in the flexographic printing process. Since information is key to making the right decision, here is an inside and deeper look at what goes on after you place your custom printing order. Below are three things you should know about flexographic printing. You may find more information at FlexStor if you need additional resources.

It is all about agility
Contemporary flexographic printing machines can attain printing speeds of about 2,000 feet per minute without sacrificing the printing quality. While every single project is different and the order’s details usually impact how fast it can be completed, efficiency and speed are some of the main reasons flexographic printing works well for a variety of applications.Flexibility is at its core
This type of printing is actually flexible in several different ways such as:
• It can be utilized to print on a broad range of materials, including cardboard, paper, metallic foil, and other substrates.
• Because this type of printing is applied to paper rolls that could be slit and sheeted afterward depending on the job requirements, a variety of final product shapes and sizes are available.
• It offers countless color combinations through the multi-color printing feature.

It fits the budget
In comparison to some of the other printing options, flexographic printing has proven to be quite cost-effective in the long run due to the following qualities:
• The ink applied is designed to dry a lot faster, which reduces drying time and speeds up every print job.
• Each job is completed quicker due to the speed of the machines and relatively short set-up time.
• It enables smaller print jobs to run efficiently.

You probably know that time is money. As such, being able to provide a high-quality product in the least time possible translates to greater value for the investment. Having the opportunity to order small runs without wasting money also makes it possible for companies to experiment in an economical manner and maintain their agility when it comes to responding to the needs of their customers. Although there is a lot more to know about this type of printing, the three points mentioned above highlight what is exciting and unique about this particular print option. You may find more information at Flex Essentials if you need additional resources.