Featured post

Newseum Future of News

target-market-100219345Nowadays, there are many affordable and easily reachable ways of marketing a small business. More and more platforms are being created to help small business owners on limited budgets achieve marketing success. However, the downside of having so many platforms is getting confused about how to use each site to its maximum ability.  Not being able to use different marketing platforms properly could result in losing business and effectively losing money.

Everything you used to be able to get from resources such as the yellow pages is now available online. And for business owners who may not be too comfortable with the internet, marketing online may be a bit daunting at first, as well as confusing.

Hopefully this blog wil help you in gaining a better understand about the different platforms available to small business owners to help market your companies. This blog will offer information for topics such as online marketing, social media marketing and mobile marketing.

Soda Blasting Cleaning & Restoration Services


Soda Blasting

Architects and other professionals are always looking for safe cleaning and restoration services which is why soda blasting has become so popular.

Unlike some of the previous, very aggressive solutions, soda blasting is eco-friendly whilst at the same time very effective for removing paint, grime, moss, algae, graffiti, and other substances that build up on the outside of buildings.

It is even more important to control the cleaning methods used when restoring buildings and in this article you can see why more people use soda blasting companies these days …

The APT Eco precision Blast System is revolutionary. It is an environmentally friendly, non-destructive, non-abrasive, chemical free cleaning process using specially formulated granules of natural bicarbonate of soda and controlled amounts of compressed air.

The APT Eco precision Blast System is by far the quickest, safest and most cost effective method used to clean and remove decades of build up from pollution, residues and coatings from virtually any surface without damaging the substrates.

Blasting soda is an extremely friable material that has micro fragmentation on impact, literally taking away surface materials without damaging the fabric of your building or surface.  Soda particles fracture into smaller particles on impact thus providing a thorough cleaning action while softening the impact on the substrate. [Soda Blasting Article]

Video Demonstrating The Cleaning Power of Soda Blasting



Cleaning and restoring the outside of buildings has to be done in a cost effective manner and using a system such as soda blasting to ensure no damage occurs due to aggressive cleaning.


Botox Treatment To Combat Sweating

Botox-Treatment-For-HeadachesIf you’re feeling embarrassed about constantly sweating, then maybe now is the time to try and get your excessive sweating treated. You may not be aware that you can now use botox to stop sweating.

The chances are that you haven’t heard about this method of treating excessive sweating. But as this blog, written for laserase Wales states, botox is being used to treat excessive sweating…

Botox Treatment For Sweating

Excessive sweating is an actual medical condition that is called hyperhidrosis. This is when the sweat glands in the body produce more moisture than they usually do on the normal person….

Botox Laser Treatment:

Finding The Right Botox Clinic

Botox_treatmentNow that you’ve decided to go ahead with laser botox treatment, it’s important that you find a clinic that offers the best service. This is something you may have overlooked when researching into different botox methods.

To help save you some time, I’m going to draw your attention to this post by Laserase Wales. This blog found on their site gives you a detail guide of what you should be looking out for when deciding upon a botox clinic

Botox Clinics

When a patient is considering having botox treatment from a specialised clinic, it is important to check that the clinic is a suitable place to receive treatment. Patients should ensure that the clinic that they go to for botox treatment is fully certified and is specialised enough to ensure that the best possible treatment is received…

Botox Laser Treatment

Does Laser Tattoo Removal Hurt As Much As You Think?

tattoo_removal_3When you finally decided that you were going to get your tattoo removed and you decided to do it by method of laser tattoo removal, you may have started to worry about laser tattoo removal being painful. You might have probably asked a 100 people the same question, doe laser tattoo removal hurt?

Luckily for you, Dr Neil White from Laserase Wales has written an in depth blog with as much information as you would need to help you understand about the procedure of laser tattoo removal and if it hurts or not…

Does Laser Tattoo Removal Hurt

When some people get a tattoo, there is a chance that in the future some will grow to regret ever having it done and want it to be removed. But the actual task of getting the tattoo removed may be one that you are dreading, making you unsure as to whether to go ahead with the tattoo removal treatment. Maybe the thoughts going through your head are preventing you from getting your tattoo removed.   So the burning questions are: does laser tattoo removal hurt? Does laser tattoo removal leave scars? Does tattoo removal even work? This article from Laserase Wales answers these questions to help assure you that a laser tattoo removal treatment is the most effective treatment to remove unwanted tattoos…

He has also recorded a video blog to discuss laser tattoo removal…


Is Laser Tattoo Removal As Expensive As You Think?

Tattoo_removalThere is a high chance that you know someone with a tattoo. There may even be a chance that you know someone who is looking to get a tattoo removed due to the fact they regret having it. Options such as laser tattoo removal have become a popular way of removing a tattoo. This is mainly due to the effectiveness of the laser and the results it produces.

Despite this fact, people are still unaware of the benefits of laser tattoo removal. They also worry about the cost of laser tattoo removal. In this blog, Dr Neil White goes into more depth of about using laser treatment as an option…

The Cost of Laser Tattoo Removal

If you have a tattoo that you now regret, then you are likely to be looking at ways in which you can get the tattoo removed…

Laser Tattoo Removal

Why do SME’s need an Employee Handbook?

employee handbookMost business have a set of policies and procedures which cover topics such as Health & Safety, Diversity and Equality and Social Corporate Responsibility; but having a set of outdated documents that no-one ever sees is not deemed best practice.

For many business owners, putting together a comprehensive employee handbook that covers all relevant and important policies and procedures can seem like too much trouble. They hope that what they already have in place will suffice even as the organisation grows. This approach is fine until the business is faced with an employee issues, which could end up going to a tribunal.

It’s therefore safer and far less risky to have in place a comprehensive handbook that is developed by a professional human resources agency, like hchr, and given to and signed by every employee. It’s about managing the risk and not putting your successful business in jeopardy.


The implications of not having an Employee Handbook are as follows:

• If you don’t have a complete set of robust and relevant policies and procedures, then past and present actions will tend to become the company policies. The chances are that many of these practices could be deemed discriminatory due to a lack of consistency. This means that the business is susceptible to law suits and claims as employees have not had official notification of your polices.

• Employees have a right to know what the organisation expects of them in terms of behaviour and conduct. If the policies and procedures are not communicated to them, then the business cannot expect employees to behave at work in the ways they are expected to.

• It is particularly important to set what constitutes a breach of contract or what actions are likely to lead to a disciplinary hearing. By having a grievance and disciplinary policy in place you are protecting your business from potential costly lawsuits.

• All policies should be well written and understood by managers and supervisors so that they can lead by example and communicate the content effectively to other employees. Having an effective communication process in place is as effective as having a properly developed handbook.

Professional Approach

The most efficient and professional handbooks are those that are written by a professional HR consultant with a percentage of input from the business owner to ensure that the policies are relevant to that particular organisation and business sector.
Even if you only have one employee, you will still need a set of written policies and procedures, even if they are simple, one-page documents on your company headed paper. A good starting point is to cover key areas such as: hours of work and attendance, holidays, sickness, payroll, environmental, diversity and health and safety. These should also be signed by the employee to show that he or she has understood the organisation’s expectations.

As an organisation grows, it becomes increasingly important to ensure that the correct policies and procedures are in place, preferably in the form of an employee handbook, to protect all parties.

As a note of caution: an employee handbook is important to a business of any size as it is the most effective tool available to allow business owners to communicate the organisation’s policies and procedures in order to reduce any future liabilities.


What is the benefit of setting up a Community Interest Company

CIC companiesCommunity Interest Companies(CIC’s) are exactly that; companies that have the interest of communities at their heart rather than that of making a profit.

Today, the number of CIC’s is increasingly rapidy across the UK with more than 9,000 registered as of March 2014.

Criteria that determines a CIC

A CIC is determined by the following criteria:

* All assests owned by the CIC are held in an  asset lock which are then used for the good of the community.

*There are stringent limitations which apply to dividend and interest payments made to shareholders to ensure a profit can be made, but the main focus is still to ensure benefits to the community in which the CIC operates.

In general, CICs vary in size from a multi million pound turnover organisation through to a smaller ‘kitchen table’ organisation.  They are often referred to as social enterprises and can operate as a company limited by guarantee or a company limited by shares.

Legal Structure

People who set up a CIC have the benefit of working within a simple, legal structure to help their community.

All CIC’s are regulated in the same way as any other company and are governed by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skill – BIS.

In 2009, the government launched the CIC Associaton to help to grow and monitor these type of community enterprises today and for the future.

Commenting on the growth in CIC’s across the UK, the CIC Regulator says, “The CIC model has come a long way in ten years and I am delighted not only that we are well on the way to having 10,000 CICs across the UK by the end of this year”.


Traditionally, most CIC’s tend to be set up to support third and voluntary sector organisations but more recently private sector organisations are going down this route, particularly those working in property and energy services.

For example,  Warm Wales-Cymru Gynnes is A CIC that has been established for more than 10 years, the longest established CIC company in Wales.   During that time, the organisation has delivered energy saving benefits to Welsh Communities instead of passing profits to its shareholders.

National Grid

The CIC was originally set up by the National Grid as part of a strategy to meet its corporate responsibility to the Government at a time when the issue of fuel poverty was high on the political agenda.

The principal motivation behind Warm Wales’s work from the very start was to bring partners together with a budget, using whatever sources were available, to deliver cost effective, tangible, fuel poverty relieving measures to Welsh communities.   Where households in need fell outside the scope of other funding schemes, the company provided the money so that all were included.  The company track-record of managing projects totalling £40 million for improvements to nearly 60,000 homes demonstrates how well this commitment has been achieved.




Importance of having a schedule of dilapidations for a commercial landlord

DilapidationsDilapidations is a fact of life in a commercial leasehold property.  As an area of Landlord & Tenant law, dilapidations, as a concept, has been around for hundreds of years allowing the courts to put to test everything from the meaning of repair to valuing the impact of disrepair, and an awful lot in between.  In recent years, the volume of dilapidation claims has been on the increase, but so too have the efforts of those professionals who deal with them in promoting transparency and fairness; the objective being to reduce the number of claims proceeding to litigation and eliminate fraudulent abuse of the process.

The current economic environment  is, of course, a major contributor to the recent uptake in claims, but the trend has been shifting for much longer than this, as landlords have seen it as an end-of-lease ‘bonus’ and tenants have become more savvy about curtailing their otherwise open-ended liabilities.

Over the last few decades, the length of commercial leases has diminished.  The traditional ‘institutional’ 25 year leases, without an option to break mid-term, are all but gone.  These leases have been superseded with 3-10 year terms, usually with an early option to terminate by way of a break clause.  This, of course, is at the behest of nervous tenants who don’t want to over-commit when the longevity of their business cannot be guaranteed.  It also works for those few tenants in the fortunate position of anticipated expansion and not wishing to be saddled with a property they will soon outgrow.   The frequency of dilapidation claims has therefore increased against the general backdrop of falling lease terms and the prevalence of break clauses giving tenants an early opt-out.

However, the economic downturn over the last few years has become a more significant catalyst for the volume of dilapidation claims in circulation.  Struggling tenants who had the foresight to sign a lease with a break clause are opting to use this lifeline now more than ever.  This is much to the detriment of the landlord who perhaps had naively assumed a consistent income stream over the full term.  Those impecunious tenants without the luxury of a ‘get out of jail’ card only have the option of proposing a surrender, which will invariably be at the mercy of the landlord’s terms.  If the tenant is viewed as a strong covenant, then few landlords in the current climate will be agreeable to a surrender unless the deal on the table is too attractive to refuse, and where there is another suitable candidate waiting in the wings.

On the other hand, landlords are faced with a more awkward decision when a tenant they see as a ‘man of straw’ neither has the funds to table a persuasive surrender proposal, nor the means to continue paying rent to the end of the lease term.  If they disappear, the landlord will be left to do some wound licking as a dilapidations claim will be a futile exercise and the landlord will then need to employ a professional organisation such as APT-ICC to the work on their behalf.


How to get New Customers for your hair Removal Laser Company

Laser Hair removalLaser technology is now widely used as a treatment for a number of skin complaints, tattoo removal, and even hair removal. Many people harbour acute insecurities about unwanted, particularly dark or coarse, or easily noticeable hair on parts of their bodies, and will examine a number of methods by which they can remove it. Laser treatment requires a number of sessions to be completely effective, but it is a painless process that is considered the most permanent when compared to other hair removal methods.

To acquire more customers and clients in the business of laser hair removal can be challenging, as it is a very specific product that many people will only possess minimum knowledge of. However, the target market for this product is also very specific; people who are suffering from unwanted hair.

Are you an authority on laser hair removal?

The main focus of attracting new customers should be to establish yourself, or your business, as an authority on laser hair removal. As mentioned, the general public will have next to no knowledge of the intricacies and procedures involved with laser hair removal, but those with unwanted hair will have a decided interest in finding out more, yet before they undergo any cosmetic procedure, they will want to feel confident that the provider they have chosen is 100% competent and highly knowledgeable. Wouldn’t you?

To be seen as an authority, and provide potential customers with solid reassurance, it is a good idea to clearly explain the process of laser hair removal on a page on your website. This should be an extremely detailed explanation, covering the origins of laser treatments,  the types of laser involved, how the laser works, the biology of the hair follicle; everything that belies you are an expert at what you do. However, you should also be sure to make this explanation as clear as possible, without using any complicated language that may confuse readers and turn them away.

Building relationships with potential customers

As an addition to this information, which should be easily accessible on your website, you could also offer an exclusive e-book, containing specific information about laser hair removal. Offering this e-book on your website will unconsciously establish you, or your business, as an ‘author’ in the customers mind, lending more weight to what you say and helping to establish a positive reputation. When offering an e-book, be sure to protect it behind a data capture form, where the customer must first enter their name and email address to gain access to the book. Doing this will mean you can build a list of customers with which you can nurture through email campaigns, further building a relationship and lending you authority. If your business deals with other laser procedures, such as acne treatment, or tattoo removal, you can publish an e-book for each area.

To further build a relationship with potential customers it is also good practice to film a number of videos to upload to your Youtube account; these can then be embedded on your website and circulated across your social media accounts. The focus of these videos should be the same as your website and the e-book; simply explaining the various elements and details involved in laser hair removal. The reiteration of this information will reinforce the air of authority in your customers’ mind, but it will also allow them to ‘put a face to a name’, demonstrating that you and your business have a personal side, and like to be familiar with your customers. The addition of videos will also help with your SEO and boost your page ranking.

As an example, watch the video below where, in an interview, Dr Neil White from Laserase Wales talks about laser hair removal.


Improving Gas Connections in South West England

Gas connections in south west englandThe demand for gas connections within United Kingdom is increasing at a rapid rate, especially within the South West of England which is lagging behind the rest of the UK in this area. In order to cater to this increasing demand, the utility companies are working hard in order to improve the gas connection and provide a better service for the people in need.

Usually gas connection works take around 6 weeks to implement and complete and the utility companies in the South West of England will have a plan of action for each area.   Some will link up with specialist organisations who are able to access grant funding to cover the cost of the installations, particularly in areas of high fuel poverty.

Utility Companies

The utility companies who are working on these projects believe that this work is a sound investment and will contribute towards the future of South Western England.   People who have already benefitted from new gas connections, particularly those who have received funding for the projects from organisations such as Integrated Energy Services, have seen their fuel bills go down and their quality of life go up in terms of warmer homes, less damp and so less sickness.

According to the utility companies, current gas installation projects are part of a multi million pound replacement programme, which is expected to be carried out over a period of 30 years. The entire programme is expected to cover other areas including Wales.

Old Pipes

They will be targeting regions which are still reliant on old metal pipes, repacing them with non-corroding, highly durable plastic pipes which are better suited to carry gas supplies. These plastic pipes have a lifespan of about 80 years and people will not have to worry about any issues with their gas connections for a long period of time.

At the moment, the utility companies are working in to collect details regarding the gas pipeline connections in the South West of United Kingdom.  Once all the information is collected, the project will be implemented across the region and the people will be able to experience its benefits over some time. The United Kingdom’s gas connection network is considered as the safest in the world and these new implementations will assist them to enhance supply to those homes in most need of effective, affordable energy supplies.

The benefits of connecting to gas services for your household

Gas services installationsA gas service is something that we use each and every day. We need gas for most of our day to day requirements, including cooking and keeping our homes warm. Therefore, it is essential for the people in UK to look for a reliable gas service provider. Poorly maintained gas lines have the ability create huge problems and it is essential to look for a company that cares about the clients.

Service Providers 

As you already know, gas can be a dangerous thing if not managed in a proper way. In addition to the gas service provider, you will have to think about the gas boiler as well. The old gas boilers can increase the risk of an accident inside your home and they consume a lot of energy than the new ones. If you are concerned about the safety and energy efficiency, you will have to think of going for a new gas boiler. In addition, the older boilers will emit huge amounts of carbon dioxide and you need to think about that as well.

Even though this doesn’t seem like a big deal to you, just think that almost all the people who live in the present world prefer to live a healthy life in less polluted cities. This can not only help you to save money, but also give you the opportunity to protect the earth.
When you make the decision to upgrade your existing gas boiler, you will have to think about the best option for you. In this situation, it is essential to look for a reputed gas services company in the country. There are companies which cover all the services that you need and it is better to go for such a company to avoid hassle. It is better to choose a company with an online account, where you can refer for more information and check whether they have a constant gas supply. If you pay special attention towards these points before selecting a gas service provider, you will be able to enjoy all the above mentioned benefits without any problem.

Gas Connections

But what if you don’t even have a gas connection? Then all of these issues become superfluous. There are however organisations that can access funding for gas connections to specific areas of the UK. You need to careful and ensure that you are dealing with a reputable company (and not private cold callers who will take your money and not necessarily deliver). Look for Community Interest Companies who can access government funding to support gas connections as these companies are more accountable than others.

Does Your Business Need Workplace Mediation?

Everyone is different and adheres to their own work values and ethics, which are not always compatible with other people. Therefore, any business or organisation, no matter how big or small, will have employees and staff that might not agree with each other regarding certain topics. Workplace disputes between employees can be something small and inconsequential, but certain conflicts can quickly get out of hand and cause problems for other employees, as well as the business in general.


The conflict can arise from a number of circumstances, such as individual behaviour, disagreements over working practices, allegations of unfair treatment, arguments between departments, there are countless ways in which the communication can break down between groups and individuals, meaning they are no longer willing to listen to the other party and come to a solution that is satisfactory for everyone. HR advisors or HR agencies, will be qualified in delivering workplace mediation services, that allow for an independent party to come to an arrangement that will suit everyone involved in the conflict.

Mediation for your Business

No business can afford to have interruptions, or let circumstances develop that could potentially threaten the work ethic or production of the company. However, a lot of businesses will arrive at the conclusion that only a formal grievance or disciplinary procedure will bring the conflict to a close.

Mediation is a technique that is completely voluntary and confidential, and involves a mediator liaising with all sides involved in the conflict to help discover the underlying problem, and encourage each party to see things from another perspective. This technique is valuable to businesses that do not have the time or resources to spend on lengthy formal procedures, which may not even reach a conclusion, and leave each party sill harbouring ill feelings.

As a business person, would you rather have an issue resolved swiftly and quietly, or do you want the same issues brought up again and again, without a solution in sight?

Mediation in Action

The video below is from Acas, the Advisory, Concilation, and Arbitration Service, and demonstrates the process of mediation and how it can help you resolve many business issues.

Where to start?

The video above is a great way to see if mediation will be useful for your situation, and if you feel it could be a viable process to resolve any issues within your business, but how can you begin the process?

There are a number of sources you can access online, such as fact sheets, free downloads, and other videos that will thoroughly explain the process of mediation, how to deal with certain problems, or tips on how to carry out mediation yourself. Again, ACAS has a number of resources that you can use, and also has a wealth of information regarding workplace grievances, and the process and procedure involved in them, if that is the route you are forced down.

Dealing with conflict in your business, and attempting a mediation process yourself, could pose a few problems, such as employees not willing to disclose certain information to a senior member of staff, or trying to persuade you in to pursuing their course of action. A number of HR experts are available, to act as a completely independent workplace mediation advisor, and employ their professional knowledge and experience to the situation, in order to deal with any grievances.

Employing an external HR firm could be an ideal, stress-free solution for you to resolve the conflict as quickly as possible, at a relatively low cost. However, there are resources available to you if you wish to advise a current employee to act as a mediator, or if you wish to build your own skill set.

Further information