Choosing The Next Business Move

Simple Ways To Keep Your Commercial Oven In Good Working Order

As a professional baker, your commercial oven is your lifeline. An issue or malfunction with your oven will impact productivity and, most importantly, your profits. Fortunately, there are a number of practical things you can do to help avoid a major problem with your oven.

Go Easy On The Door

Commercial ovens can come with both horizontal and vertical opening doors. If you have a vertical opening door, take extra care. Vertical oven doors have strong hinges, which allows the door to be able to withstand extra weight being placed on it without breaking off. However, there are limits to this.

When you’re in a hurry taking baked goods out of the oven and need to run and do something else quickly, don’t leave the dish on the door and walk away. Putting extra weight on the door will only cause the hinges to wear at a faster rate and eventually lead to door damage.

Inspect The Seals

It’s imperative that you inspect the seals on your oven periodically. The seals around the door play an important role because they help maintain the internal temperature of the oven. If a seal is showing even the slightest sign of damage, such as a small rip or tear, this can have an effect on the oven’s ability to maintain the correct temperature.

When you have temperature control issues, this can affect cost in a number of different ways. First, you will have to cook your goods longer, which will increase your utility bills. Secondly, you could experience quality issues with your baked goods, which can affect your profits. Have a damaged seal replaced promptly.

Don’t Forget To Recalibrate

The average residential oven can go quite a very long time before the need for recalibration ever comes up. This is not the case when it comes to commercial ovens. Similar to a seal issue, an oven that is need of calibration will alter the internal temperature inside the oven.

Even if you aren’t noticing any cooking irregularities, every so often check the heat levels. To do this, turn your oven on to a set temperature. Give the oven time to heat up and then check the temperature with an oven thermometer. If there is any variance in temperature, it’s time to have the oven recalibrated.

Keep oven maintenance a priority in your bakery to keep your productivity and profits out of the red.

For a bakery association, contact an organization such as The RPIA Group.

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Compensation Consultant: Do You Need One And How Can You Help?

When it comes to a company’s success, it takes good employees. In some cases, though, if you’re paying them too much, it can break your company. So, there has to be some middle ground. You want to make sure that you aren’t drowning your company, but at the same time, you want to make sure your employees are receiving the best possible pay packages. This is where compensation consultants come in.

Should You Hire a Compensation Consultant?

Here are two situations where splurging to hire a consultant may actually be beneficial to you:

  1. You Have Limited Knowledge – While it may be hard to admit, you may not necessarily have the expertise or the know-how to perform the compensation planning for the company or the time it will take to learn it. You could opt to purchase HR software for assistance, but you’ll still have to figure out how to use it. Therefore, you’re wasting valuable time that you could be spending running your company and addressing other pressing concerns that only you can deal with. So, the best approach is often hiring a consultant who is experienced in your industry.
  2. You Need More Than a Consultant’s Know-How – When you hire a compensation consultant, you will receive a whole lot more than just their knowledge. In fact, you will get their perspective as an outside expert. They’ll be able to help you get things done inside of the office that you may not have been able to do otherwise. For example, your CFO may be making a salary that is significantly more than other CFOs in the same industry. You may not realize it, and if you did, then you may simply not have the heart to tell them that you need to reduce it. Luckily, the compensation consultant has no ties to the CFO and will have no problem addressing the over-paid employee regarding the payment issue.

How You Can Help Improve the Overall Process

If you examine your individual company situation and determine that hiring a compensation consultant would be beneficial, here are a couple of things you can do to help improve the overall outcome of the process:

  1. Remain Involved at All Times – As the HR manager of your company, it is crucial that you remain close to the consultant throughout the entire process. Make sure that they are up to speed with the organization’s history, the existing compensation plan and even key employees in the company.
  2. Provide Help When Needed – Don’t hesitate to see if there is anything that you can help with. In some cases, there may be some steps in the process that may be easier for you to handle than the consultant, such as taking survey data and matching it with jobs in the company. By doing this, your company may even be able to save a little bit of cash. 

To learn more, contact a consulting firm like Fox Lawson & Associates, A Division of Gallagher Benefit Services Inc.

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Which Type Of Water Filter Is Best For You?

If you are interested in getting a point of use water filter, then there are quite a few choices that you will need to make. You will need to decide exactly what kind of filter you want and what kind of filtration mechanism would be most suited for your needs. To help you make these decisions, here are some details and explanations about the various types of point of use water filters:

Types of Point of Use Filters

First of all, there are several different places that you can actually add a water filter to a given facet, including beneath the sink, on the faucet, and as an entirely separate pitcher.

Beneath the Sink

It’s common to install water filters beneath the sink in question, where they will be out of sight and out of mind. You won’t need to pay any attention to them, aside from when it comes time to perform maintenance and replace the filter. You might want professional assistance in installing these units, since they can be a bit tricky for the average homeowner.

Their location can make them pretty frustrating when you need to actually do maintenance or fix the filter, since you will need to access the area beneath your sink. Again, you might need to call a professional to handle this delicate task.

On the Faucet

As a stark contrast to the previous type, these units are attached directly to the facuet, filtering the water as it flows out. This does ultimately mean that the filter is much more visible and present, and you may even need to tinker with some settings on the filter every once in a while. However, their basic usage is quite simple and you will rapidly get used to their presence.

They are also easier to access when it comes time for maintenance, since you won’t need to fumble around under the sink.

Separate Pitcher

Finally, you might be interested in getting an entirely separate water filter pitcher. These tend to be the easiest to use, since you simply fill them up and wait for the water to filter. They can be easily stored in the refrigerator, allowing easy access to cold filtered water. However, they also require the most effort on your part, since you will need to consciously fill them up each time you wish to have filtered water. You can often buy these filters in bulk, which could potentially reduce the overall cost by quite a bit.

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Is Your Clearance Almost Expired? Don’t Let It Go!

Security clearances are difficult to acquire, as they require a significant investment by the hiring company. Holding a clearance means that you’ve either showed impressive workplace skills and trustworthiness in the eyes of your employer, or have put your life on the line in the service of your country as a military security clearance holder. If you have a year or less left on your clearance, the time to act is now. If you don’t know what the clearance is worth, here’s a few warnings and tips on what to do next before you lose a major job market advantage.

Getting The Clearance Back Isn’t Easy

Being approved for a security clearance in the first case is a feat of competence, but that doesn’t mean that an expiration is simple to fix. The short, more simple re-investigation during an active security clearance can save a lot of time for critical projects that required cleared personnel, but an expired clearance that goes beyond the 24-month expiration window (discussed in Department of Defense directive 5200.2-R, section C3.5.2.2 and this US Air Force security expiration commentary) will require a full investigation.

You’ll have to start over from scratch, which means investigating those close to you and processing information at the back of the queue with every other contractor, federal employee and military service-member–keeping in mind that new military personnel and federal employees are pumped into the security clearance pipeline with every graduating high school and college class.

Your clearance will have the added investigation requirements of searching through your past clearance activities. Where did you work? What did you have access to? Was anything compromised during your service? Small incidents that could have been admitted and passed as simple mistakes may be under more scrutiny, and could delay your clearance. Not to mention how bad it may make you look in front of a new employer.

Renewing Your Clearance Is As Simple As Getting A Job Now

Security clearance jobs are one of the hottest tickets on the job market, even during economic downturn. It’s something that you have, but many others don’t, and with higher clearance levels you can find some job that simply needs your clearance for compliance.

Remember the pipeline of high school and college students entering the security clearance world every year? There’s a smaller pipeline of cleared federal employees and military veterans who enter the job market every day, and cleared jobs employers know how to handle your paperwork properly.

There may be some competition for the perfect job at the top of certain industries, but if you’re just trying to renew your clearance, employers can make a deal with you that works out well for all parties involved. Even a temporary contract requiring a clearance is enough to push for a renewal. A renewal isn’t an extension or grace period; your renewal resets the clearance timer and gives you more time to work with your qualification.

Contact a security clearance jobs professional to discuss the cleared jobs market and opportunities for you to renew your clearance–or, if it’s been over 24 months, a chance to start over.

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Tips For Achieving Effective Reference Check Phone Calls

Hiring the right employees is important for all businesses, but it is not an easy task to complete. There are a lot of steps you can should take before you hire someone to work for your company, and one of these is completing effective reference checks. Reference checks are a vital step in the hiring process, and here are some tips to help you get more out of these phone calls.

Avoid yes and no questions

It is easy for a reference to answer yes and no questions, but you might not learn a lot about the person through these questions alone. On the other hand, you might be able to learn a great deal about a person if you ask open ended questions. Your goal of the call is to learn as much as possible about the candidate you are considering hiring. Here are some questions that could help you achieve this:

  • Could you tell me what the person’s greatest strengths are?
  • What about the person’s weaknesses?
  • Would you rehire the person, and if so, why?
  • Did the person make any major contributions to your organization?
  • Is there anything interesting you can tell me about the person’s skills, educational background, or work qualities?

Questions like these will open up dialogue between you and the reference, and they are likely to help you gather details that will help you decide whether to hire the person or not. As you do this, it is also important to avoid asking questions that are not legally allowed. This can include questions about the person’s looks, sexual orientation, race, and religion.

Ask references for additional references

When applicants list references on their applications and resumes, they typically hand-select the people they think would offer “good” answers during a reference call. Applicants may also purposely leave people off their list if they believe the information would be derogatory. If you ask each reference what his or her title is and how that related to the applicant, you might discover that the applicant left off names of his or her direct supervisors.

If you could get the names of the applicant’s direct supervisors, you may be able to learn more information, simply because the direct supervisor may know the applicant well.

Learning how to effectively handle reference checks can take time, but this is an important step in the hiring process. If you do not feel confident doing this or would like to make sure your reference checks are as effective as possible, you may want to hire an employment screening company.

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3 Reasons Why It Is Important To Take Patient Surveys

After you visit the doctor or the hospital, you are often asked if you will be willing to fill out or answer a phone survey. While you may hesitate doing the survey because you don’t want to spend the time and effort to do it, you definitely should. These surveys have a lot of importance and many of them are fairly quick and easy for you to take. This article will discuss 3 reasons why it is important to take patient surveys when asked. 

Feedback Creates Change

If you weren’t happy with the services that you received at the doctor’s office or at the hospital, you will be happy to know that your feedback can create change. If you explain in the survey why you weren’t pleased with your services, this will allow the staff at the doctor’s office or hospital to know what it is that they need to improve upon. If several people have the same complaints as you do, and take the time to fill out the survey, these changes will happen even faster. This can make it so that you have a better experience the next time that you attend the doctor’s office or hospital, making it completely worth it to take the survey. 

Great Employees Are Rewarded 

If you were exceptionally pleased with one of the health care professionals that treated you, such as your nurse or doctor, then you can talk about this in the survey as well. If possible, state who they are by name, and explain what they did that made them so excellent. It is a wonderful thing to be rewarded when you do something well, so taking a few minutes to fill out a survey so that an exceptional employee can be recognized is an amazing thing. This employee may receive special recognition for their positive review, which could include becoming employee of the month, receiving a raise, etc.

Good Feedback Is Motivating 

Good feedback from a patient is often very motivating for staff members. If they hear that their patients think that they are doing a great job, then they are going to feel really good and this will motivate them to do even better. This creates good experiences for all of the patients who come into the office, creating an even better environment. To think that taking a few minutes to fill out a patient satisfaction survey created this atmosphere makes it super important and worth your time.

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3 Reasons To Work With A Building Code Consultant Before Building Your Home

If you are planning on building a house, you probably know that it’s key to get everything just right. One step of that process is to work with a building code consultant. If you are thinking about skipping this step, consider the benefits of working with one of these professionals.

1. Ensure Your Home is Compliant

First of all, it is important to ensure that your home is compliant with all of the local building codes. If it’s not, you could waste a lot of time, money and materials in having things re-done that weren’t done properly the first time around. A building inspector is going to come out to look at your home after it’s built, and if it’s not compliant with the local codes, you’re going to have a lot of problems on your hands. If you choose to work with a building code consultant, you can hopefully avoid these issues.

2. Think About Potential Safety Hazards

Building code consultants understand the building codes and the reasons for them. If your home isn’t up to code, it’s probably not safe for you and your family. A building code consultant can help you think about potential safety issues that you might not have thought about otherwise and can help you ensure that your new home is as safe as possible for you and your loved ones.

3. Plan for the Future

A lot of contractors are aware about current building codes but might not know much about the codes that are in the works. A building code consultant, however, spends his or her days researching building codes and laws. This means that they often know about codes that haven’t been put into action yet but that will be in the future. It’s a good idea to go ahead and plan for these codes as well, and a building code consultant can help you do just that. Don’t just make sure that your home is compliant today — work with a building code consultant so that you can ensure that your home will continue to be compliant in the future. Even if you aren’t required to have a home that is up to code for new codes that have been established after your home has been built, it’s a good idea to do so to ensure that your home is safe.

For more information, contact a building code consultant in your area.

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