AusTech

Business and Technology Articles Contributed by UWA Students

Month: March 2018

Why fulfilment companies are important to Australian business

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If you find it hard to acquire a warehouse and ship items to your customers, it’s a very good idea to opt for a reliable fulfillment company. This type of business will help you handle the shipping process faster and with some amazing results. The best part about using this type of approach is that it works quite nicely and you can easily adapt it to suit your needs if you need to. But how can you pick the best fulfillment company?

Experience

It’s always important to check the previous experience for the fulfillment company. Some companies will state that they have a lot of experience in the industry, others not so much. The idea here is that you never have to worry about bad results with an experienced company. But you really have to figure out which is the best candidate in this regard. Try to take that into consideration and the overall results will be quite magnificent in the end.

Delivery speeds

Every fulfillment company comes with its own delivery speeds. Most of the time you will notice that some of the best companies in this regard deliver products in 1-3 days. That’s obviously what you want to have, a very fast delivery system that works extremely well and which brings in front tremendous results.

Shipping costs

Of course, it won’t matter that much if the shipping costs are very high. That’s why we recommend you to find a business with some low shipping costs, just to be safe. The ROI can be very good this way, and in the end you will end up saving money while also having the orders fulfilled by professionals. It’s the best of both worlds, and the outcome can be more than ok in the end.

Reviews

You should also try to see some online reviews. Every fulfillment company has some previous customers that left reviews online. This is the best way to figure out whether the company that you want to work with is actually good or not. Sure, it will take a little bit of time to find all reviews on the web, but at least you will have a great set of results and that on its own will be well worth the effort. Plus, you get to make an informed purchase, and that will make the experience a whole lot better.

Don’t rush into working with just about any fulfillment company. Some of them are good, others not so much. You really have to know what you are looking for and where you can get the best return on investment. Most of the time results can be extremely good if you make the right purchase. So, avoid rushing into this and try to figure out a unique approach that does help make a lot of sense in this regard. It’s certainly worth it, as long as you know how to tackle the entire process and handle everything correctly. In addition, a fulfillment company will just help you save a lot of money, and that’s always nice to have.

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The UWA Student’s Guide to Invoice Finance

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The concept of invoice financing was devised to provide prompt access of working capital to businesses by releasing the cash tied up in unpaid invoices. Often called the ‘debtor financing’, ‘spot factoring’ or ‘invoice discounting’, invoice financing is a process involving short term borrowing for the purpose of increasing the cash flow position of a company. It is generally confused with debt factoring, which has an absolutely different financial arrangement. In other words. the whole concept of invoice finance can be summed up in the following statement: “In order to raise a required amount of cash, you as the owner of a particular business, call upon a financier to sell your credit invoices. The financier in return pays you money immediately, while the customer pays the financier later.”

How does Invoice Financing work for businesses?

Step 1: Money can be easily drawn against the potential sales, before the final payment from the customer is received. In simple terms, the business borrows a percentage value of the total sales ledger from a finance company. Here, the “potential sales” that have not yet been paid for, are used as a collateral for borrowing.

Step 2: The financial company charges for this service on a monthly basis, along with a pre-defined rate of interest applied on the amount that is borrowed against sales’ invoice. They can also refuse to lend against invoices in certain cases, like when the customer sells to overseas companies, involves credit risk, undertakes sales having long credit terms or in case of small value invoices. During this period, the finance company can demand records of the ongoing credit sales process, and sales ledger from the business.

Step 3: Once the said invoice is raised by the business, the percentage value of the invoice – which is generally 80 percent in most cases, can be borrowed as a fee.

What are some key benefits of invoice financing?

  • One of the major problems businesses face is the late payment of all invoices. The process of chasing the outstanding invoices is not only time consuming, but also adversely affects the customer-business relationship. To avoid this, invoice financing supports outsourced credit control, so that the business owners can concentrate more on product development and customer satisfaction.
  • Invoice financing promotes better management of sales ledger CFD trading investments, leading to shortening of payment cycles.
  • Businesses availing invoice financing can pay rents, salaries, taxes and other bills regularly. It also makes them capable of being prepared for the unexpected.
  • The most convenient thing about invoice financing is that quite similar to an overdraft, the businesses have to pay only for the interest on the funds they borrow. This makes the whole process more flexible and user friendly than debt factoring.
  • Arrangements for a fully confidential invoice financing can be made. This means that suppliers and customers aren’t notified about the business using sales’ invoices to borrow cash without paying them first.

What are some key drawbacks of invoice financing?

  • In the corporate world, companies that are under any sort of financial debt are considered to be going through an overall financial crisis. This information may lead to suppliers being constantly reluctant to provide appropriate credit terms, negating the most common benefits of invoice financing.
  • Once the company or business starts depending excessively on the improved cash flow caused by invoice financing, it becomes increasingly difficult for the business to get out of the invoice financing arrangement. You will come across a lot of businesses that turn to invoice financing for capital support in the beginning, and then end up using it for a prolonged period of time.
  • While providing invoice financing, the finance company you are dealing with tends to take legal charge of the sales ledger as a part of the whole process. This leaves the businesses with fewer assets to show for as collateral, making it expensive and difficult for them to take out other loans. Even with all the benefits it may come with, invoice financing is somehow considered to cost more than an overdraft or a simple bank loan.
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Cash management for UWA student businesses

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If you were to speak to small business owners about the things that occupy the biggest chunk of their time and attention, the vast majority will include working capital management in their list. For smaller businesses, cash is the undisputed king.

It is impossible to overstate the importance of effective working capital management for an SME. Lack of it could not only disrupt the smooth functioning of business, but also result in delayed payment of trade dues as well as salaries, which could lead to loss of reputation and drop in employee morale. That’s why effective cash flow management could make the difference between survival and shutting down.

If you are a small business owner, here are a few tools for working capital management that you will find in most business courses.

  • Bank Overdraft: As the name suggests, this is a facility offered by banks whereby account holders are permitted to draw money beyond the balance in their account, up to an approved limit, known as the overdraft limit. For example, an account holder having AUD 7,000 in the bank, with an overdraft limit of AUD 5,000 can draw up to AUD 12,000.Where the overdraft facility is availed, interest is charged only on the overdrawn amount. Unlike a loan, which comes with a repayment schedule, overdraft offers considerable flexibility as far as the timing of repayment is concerned. However, given the cost of borrowing, this facility should be used only if absolutely needed. As of 2016, overdraft charges in the United States amounted to a whopping USD 11.6 Billion.
  • Factoring: Factoring is an arrangement with a financial intermediary (known as a factor), whereby businesses can sell invoices on which payments are receivable on a future date in return for liquid cash. For instance, a company in need of liquid cash may sell an invoice against which AUD 100 are due in a month’s time. The factor will pay, say AUD 70 in cash up front. On receiving payment from the debtor, the factor will retain, say AUD 5 and transfer the remaining AUD 25 to the company.Invoice factoring is best suited for companies which are in industries where there is usually a long period between raising the invoice and receiving payment, or those which are in urgent need of cash, because it is a relatively expensive form of working capital financing.
  • Bills of exchange: Bill of exchange is a financial instrument commonly used in international trade, whereby one party undertakes to pay a certain amount to the other party, usually on a specified date. What makes it particularly useful as a financial instrument useful is that the drawer (i.e. the party to whom payment is due) can transfer legal title to the bill of exchange to a third person, which means payments can be made even before cash is received.In addition, the payee has the option of encashing the bill of exchange by endorsing it to a financial institution, which will apply a discount plus service charges, based on its policies (referred to as discounting). While discounting eliminates default risks, it is also an expensive method of financing.
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Where Are We Now? The Evolution of Web Development

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If you’re not a web developer, then you probably don’t have a strong grasp of what web development really consists of. Which makes sense as to why would you know? However, web development has come a long way from where it originally started from. As technology continues to advance, the way websites are formed change. If you’re curious about web development, you’re probably wondering what’s going on in the web developing sphere. Let’s take a closer look at the current trends of web development. 

1.Front-end vs. Back-end

Before we start showing you the trends, you need to know that web developers are divided into two different types of people: back-end and front-end developers. All websites have a back and front-end. The front-end of the website it what you see on screen while the back-end of the website is what you don’t see. These two types of developers focus on completely different aspects of the website. Front-end developers focus on aesthetics while the back-end focuses on elements such as the database information and security. 

2. You can build your own website

Many people think that in order to create a website, they need to hire a web designer. If you’re completely new to web developing then having a web designer can help you out, however, it can be expensive. Though, this doesn’t mean you can’t create your own site as now there visual page builders which allow you to create your own websites with a ‘drag and drop’ feature. This makes creating your own site easy to do, however, if you need special customization, you may need a helping hand.

3. Simple Navigation

When you remember a website from ten years ago, most of us remember websites which are decked out with visual images and content. However, current web developing trends are emphasizing the importance of space and simplicity. It’s not about making the visitors overwhelmed with content that they freak out and just buy something. It’s about providing the visitor with a chance to enjoy themselves while exploring the site. The idea is to remove chaos and replace it with ease and user-friendly navigation.

4. Images

Content is everything. Without content, it wouldn’t matter what your website is offering, as your visitor doesn’t see anything of substance on it. Web developers are creating websites which are image heavy, allowing visitors to see the product through striking images rather than lengthy and blocky text. A picture says a thousand words, thus, it allows visitors to see more without having to read more.

5. Product or Feature Videos

In addition to images, feature or product videos are also becoming a huge trend in web design. Companies are incorporating images and videos in order to explain their product or service in the most interesting way with the least amount of time. These short videos aim to bring the brand to life and create a relationship between the brand and visitor. 

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Advanced Mac Cleaner Virus Removal

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Everyone knows that starting with a fresh computer is the best part of having a system. This is the time it runs the fastest, the smoothest and is untouched by terrible things like a virus. But every once in a while, there may be an ad that appears indicating that a download is necessary to scan the system. This scan can lead a person to believe that there are issues with their existing system, or there may be if they do not perform this task. For many people, these may seem like reliable and trustworthy sources and sites, so they do not question whether or not a download should occur.

However, this is the worst part of all. Considering that in reality, it is literally and virtually unknown where the download is coming from, the challenge then becomes where the user should put something on their own system. Many of us have been fooled by something that looks genuinely sincere and correct. It may appear to come from our own bank or a friend, but in fact, it is a virus.

This virus will create constant pop-ups that require restarts or will flash with a number of issues identified. Leading to many frustrating hours of closing the program or being annoyed with a reminder that something is wrong when you are unsure of how to fix it or where the issue came from.

The problem lies in many of the background processes. In many cases, these pop-up items are downloaded unbeknownst to the person who has even gone through and unselected the portion that indicates to download it. Downloading it anyway. This is a frustrating process and it was usually not even on purpose. However, there is a way to clean the system. This process requires some work and some trust in the process, but it can and does work. The other aspect to consider is that the process of clearing the Advanced Mac Cleaner needs to be double checked to ensure the entire virus and scanner has been removed from the system.

Using the uninstaller above is the best route to take. This will minimize the frustration, but it will also remind the user to be cautious what they download and from where. This should be a reminder that items downloaded from the internet should be viewed with caution, regardless of the source. Today, we are frequently online and produce a digital footprint regardless of where we go. Our information is shared via wifi when we login to a company service and we leave ourselves exposed to anything that the internet has to offer when we download products from it.

Even reliable and credible sources need to be viewed with care and an eye of caution. Unless you have developed the product, it is better to not download it. In truth, if everyone treated their own home computers like a work computer for the government, there would be much less virus sharing and downloads occurring.

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