#business process

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Business process

Overview Business Process

A business process is a set of related tasks or activities performed to produce a product or service. Business processes exist in any type of company, independent of size or industry. Internal and cross-company processes are the nerve tracts of any given company. If they are clearly defined and also optimized on a regular basis, they will drive competitiveness in the long run. Customers must be provided with products and services before competitors can establish themselves, and the ability to respond to changing market requirements is a major factor of business success.

A business process describes:

  • which activities are performed in the course of a process
  • which organizational units participate in process execution
  • what input and output data are used
  • what IT systems are involved, and
  • which events and risks occur during process execution

Business process modeling

Business process modeling is the graphic representation of a company’s business processes. Process modeling aims at graphically describing the process flow and providing information on the company so that even complex processes remain transparent.

The most important method of modeling a business process is the event-driven process chain (EPC).

A simple business process may look as follows:

Figure 1: Example of a business process

Event-driven process chains are an industry standard in business process modeling. Experts can use this business-related notation for documenting and optimizing their workflows .

The free modeling tool ARIS Express supports the free modeling of business processes with its model type ‘Business model’.

The most common business process constructs such as branches or loops are provided as fragments in ARIS Express, thus enabling you to have an easy start to the world of process modeling and flow charting .

In a model of the “Business process” type, the process organization can be represented with its activity elements, data elements, and organizational elements. The sequence of activities in terms of a business process is represented in process chains. You can model the start and end events for each activity in the process. Events are both triggers of activities and results of activities.

As events define the state or condition that cause an activity to start as well as the state that defines the completion of an activity, the start and end elements of a business process are always events. An event may be the source of several simultaneous activities; on the other hand, an activity may result in several events. To represent these branches and processing loops in a business process, a rule in the form of a circle is used. However, the connections do not just act as a graphic rule, but also define the logical links of objects.

Example business process

The following example shows a business process model that is directly embedded with the interactive model viewer. You can download it and edit it for free in ARIS Express. You can also use the video tutorials provided to find an easy way into the world of ARIS.

Let’s start modeling business process

From here you can start to learn modeling a business process with ARIS Express. The required steps are: Download ARIS Express. check some model examples or video tutorials. start modeling, share your models and discuss them with other users, and if you haven’t joined the ARIS Community yet do it now 😉



#business bank account

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BUSINESS ACCOUNTS

Get your business off to the best possible start with our simple current account.

  • 18 months free day-to-day business banking*
  • Simple pricing and free electronic payments
  • Dedicated support from our UK-based business management team
  • Financial and digital tools for your business

Switching to Lloyds Bank

Switch to us for a simple Business Current Account that lets you focus on growing your business.

  • Simple pricing and free electronic payments
  • 6 months free day-to-day business banking*
  • A guaranteed switch in 7 working days, from when your account is opened using the Current Account Switch Service (CASS)
  • Dedicated support from our UK-based business management team.

Treasurers’ Account

  • manage your account online and by phone
  • free business banking* for companies with a turnover of less than 50,000
  • get ongoing support and guidance
  • receive no charges on daily debit and credit entries
  • open a Treasurers Account quickly and easily, with no minimum amount required
  • withdraw funds as and when needed, without the need to give notice
  • arrange to have a second signatory on the account
  • easily set up direct debits and standing orders using Internet Banking
  • regularly monitor funds with free monthly statements
  • get free presentation cheques to use when making a large donation or awarding a major prize.

Credit Union Account

  • Benefit from tiered interest rates for a higher return on your whole investment, provided that cleared funds are available.
  • Enjoy an interest-earning Business Instant Access Account for all surplus funds.
  • Take advantage of cash deposits credited the same day and have immediate access to all cleared funds.
  • Receive free business banking* on all Sterling account transactions.
  • Access cheque and paying-in books available with one or more signatories.
  • Access a free bookkeeping system to help with annual reports to the Registry of Friendly Societies.
  • Receive monthly statements on all your accounts.

Islamic Business Account

  • Deposit funds into an account that doesn t attract or charge interest.
  • Ensure your money is never used for any non-Shariah approved activities.
  • Get 18 months free business banking*.
  • Keep a minimum balance of just 1 in your account each month.
  • Access your money instantly, as and when you need it.
  • Conveniently make payments using a business debit card.
  • View your account information and make payments online.
  • Make and receive business payments using a cheque book and paying-in book.

If you re just starting out, our Islamic Business Account comes with ongoing support. This includes:

  • access to one of the largest branch networks of any bank in the UK
  • multiple ways to manage your finances including Internet Banking, Mobile Banking and PhoneBank.

Switch your Islamic Business Account

  • Get six months free business banking*.
  • Choose between two switching services the Current Account Switch Service or the Transfer of Payment Arrangement Service.
  • Open an account that doesn t pay or charge interest.
  • Ensure your money is never used for any non-Shariah approved activities.
  • Keep a minimum balance of just 1 in your account each month.
  • Access your money instantly, as and when you need it.
  • Make payments using a business debit card.
  • View your account information and make payments online.
  • Make and receive business payments using a cheque book and paying-in book.

*Free day-to-day business banking includes electronic payments, cheques, cash, deposits and withdrawals. All we ask is that you operate your account in credit or within agreed limits. Free electronic payments include Direct Debits, Standing Orders, Debit Card transactions, Lloyds Banking Group/Other Bank ATM Withdrawals and Internet Banking/Phonebank Debits/Credit inc. Bulk Payments.

Calls may be monitored or recorded in case we need to check we have carried out your instructions correctly and to help improve our quality of service.

Lloyds Bank plc Registered Office: 25 Gresham Street, London EC2V 7HN. Registered in England and Wales no. 2065. Telephone: 0207 626 1500.

Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority under Registration Number 119278.

Eligible deposits with us are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). We are covered by the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). Please note that due to FSCS and FOS eligibility criteria not all business customers will be covered.

Lloyds Bank plc is an introducer to Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance Brokers Limited who arrange and administer Lloyds Bank Business Insurance Services and source products from a panel of insurers.



#business lawyer

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When Do I Need a Business Lawyer for My Small Business?

Among the countless worries for entrepreneurs who are starting or are already running a small business is the question of whether they need a business lawyer. The perception is that attorneys charge high rates and many small businesses don’t have much, if any, extra capital with which to pay lawyers. As a result, most small business owners only hire an attorney experienced with business matters when confronted with a serious legal problem (e.g. you’re sued by a customer). However, legal help is a cost of doing business that often saves you money and helps your business in the long run.

While you certainly don’t need an attorney for every step of running your business, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of the cure. This article will explain when you can cover legal issues on your own or with minimal attorney assistance and when you will definitely need a business lawyer.

Issues You Can Handle on Your Own

There are certain matters that are fairly straightforward and/or not unduly difficult to learn and therefore do not require the services of an attorney who charges at least $200 per hour. There are enough expenses associated with running a business, why not save yourself a load of money and do it yourself if you can?

The following is a list of some tasks that business owners should consider taking on themselves (with the aid of self-help resources, online and in print):

  • Writing a business plan
  • Researching and picking a name for your business (previously trademarked business names can be researched online)
  • Reserving a domain name for your website
  • Creating a legal partnership agreement, limited liability company (LLC) operating agreement, or shareholder’s agreement (see Choosing a Legal Structure )
  • Applying for an employer identification number (EIN), which you will need for employee tax purposes
  • Applying for any licenses and permits the business requires
  • Interviewing and hiring employees (there are federal and state antidiscrimination laws which regulate the hiring of employees)
  • Submitting necessary IRS forms
  • Documenting LLC meetings
  • Hiring independent contractors and contracting with vendors
  • Creating contracts for use with customers or clients
  • Creating a buy-sell agreement with partners
  • Updating any partnership, LLC, or shareholder’s agreements under which you are currently operating
  • Handling audits initiated by the IRS

The above is not an exhaustive list of legal tasks which small business owners can do on their own. It should be stated that if your business is well-funded or you feel that you need the assistance of an attorney, you can always retain a lawyer to help you with everything listed above.

Issues Where You Will Need a Business Lawyer

Most of the issues outlined above can be handled by any intelligent business owner (if you can run a business, you can certainly fill out IRS forms or fill in boilerplate business forms). There are times, however, when a business faces issues that are too complex, too time consuming, or fraught with liability issues. At that point,the wisest move is to retain a business lawyer.

A few examples include:

  • Former, current, or prospective employees suing on the grounds of discrimination in hiring, firing, or hostile work environment
  • Local, state, or federal government entities filing complaints or investigating your business for violation of any laws.
  • You want to make a special allocation of profits and losses or you want to contribute appreciated property to your partnership or LLC agreement
  • An environmental issue arises and your business is involved (even if your business didn’t cause the environmental problem, you may be penalized)
  • Negotiating for the sale or your company or for the acquisition of another company or its assets

An Ounce of Prevention

While you certainly need to retain an attorney for the serious issues above, your emphasis should be placed on preventing such occurrences in the first place. Prevention does not necessarily involve hiring an attorney, though consulting with one wouldn’t hurt. By the time you or your business is sued, the preventable damage has been done and the only question that remains is how much you’ll be paying in attorney’s fees, court fees, and damages.

For example, by the time a prospective employee files a lawsuit claiming gender discrimination based in part upon questions posed at the job interview, all you can do is hire an attorney to defend the lawsuit. If, on the other hand, you had done your own research on anti-discrimination laws, or you had consulted an attorney beforehand, you would have known not to inquire as to whether the applicant was pregnant or planned on becoming pregnant. The small effort at the beginning of the process would save you an enormous headache later.

To prevent unnecessary attorney costs at the inception of your business as well as tremendous costs after a lawsuit has been filed, you might consider a consultation arrangement with an attorney. Such an arrangement would entail you doing most of the legwork of research and the attorney providing legal review or guidance.

For example, you might use self help and online sources to create a contract with a vendor and ask an attorney to simply review and offer suggestions. Or from the previous example, you might research types of questions to ask during an interview and then send the list to an attorney for his or her approval. This way, you prevent the potential headache later and the cost to you is minimal because you’ve already done most of the work and the attorney simply reviews the document.

Find the Right Attorney for Your Business Needs

You won’t need a lawyer for each and every legal issue that comes up in your business. But when you do, it’s good to know where to find the right one. Check FindLaw’s legal directory for a business and commercial law attorney near you.



#business ethics articles

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7-Eleven. Volkswagen cases show why we should push back on ‘corporate ethics’

Professor of Management and Organization Studies, Macquarie University

Disclosure statement

Carl Rhodes does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond the academic appointment above.

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The Conversation UK receives funding from Hefce, Hefcw, SAGE, SFC, RCUK, The Nuffield Foundation, The Ogden Trust, The Royal Society, The Wellcome Trust, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and The Alliance for Useful Evidence, as well as sixty five university members.

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Chairman and major shareholder of 7-Eleven Russ Withers sits in a Senate Committee hearing in Melbourne. Julian Smith/AAP

There is perhaps no phrase more hackneyed in the corporate world than: “good ethics is good business”. Against the image of the ruthless business baron who will stop at nothing in the pursuit of wealth and power, the slogan tells us there is no friction between being good and being successful.

As luck should have it (for corporations that is) it is argued organisations can stand up and be righteous about their do-gooding, and this will actually lead to the achievement of self-interested business results. The cake can be had and eaten.

But does this ethical catch phrase really hold sway in the corporate world? Events this September suggest not.

The month of the corporate scandal

September 2015 was mired in corporate scandal. German car manufacturer Volkswagen was raked over the coals for installing software in its cars that ensured it falsely passed emission tests. Eleven million cars were involved over a period of seven years. VW’s CEO Martin Winterkorn resigned over the affair and now faces possible criminal charges .

American corporation Turing Pharmaceuticals was publicly vilified for its predatory pricing when it raised the price of the drug Daraprim by 4000%. This is a drug used to treat infections associated with HIV and AIDS. Turing’s CEO Martin Shkreli was described by the Washington Post as “the most hated man in America”.

In Australia trouble arrived at convenience store chain 7-Eleven when the ABC’s documentary series Four Corners revealed its use of exploitative and illegal work practices to reduce its labour costs. Employees were being paid less than half the legal minimum wage. Young and foreign workers were especially targeted. The scandal saw the resignations of 7-Eleven’s chairman Russ Withers, and its CEO Warren Wilmot.

Bad ethics is good business

Each of these scandals has been scrutinised in terms of business ethics. We are not talking here about contentious and nuanced debates about the nature of morality. In these cases the ethical issues relate to cheating, lying, deception, law breaking, exploitation, and merciless profiteering. As far as any common understanding of ethics is concerned these things are on the far side of the thick and grey line that separates right from wrong.

What do these cases have in common? Each one suggests there was an ethos in place in these corporations that held that “bad ethics is good business”. Seven years of highly orchestrated cheating at VW meant increased sales. In 2009 VW became the world’s biggest car manufacturer .

Institutionalised wage fraud and labour exploitation at 7-Eleven kept store costs down, increasing profits both for franchisees and (especially) for the parent company. 7-Eleven has twice been names Australia’s “franchisor of the year”. Price gouging at Turing meant a drug listed on The World Health Organization’s essential medicines list could bolster the company’s profits by exploiting the sick and vulnerable.

Just don’t get caught

The “bad ethics is good business” approach was going well for these businesses until they got caught. These three cases have triggered debates still raging in all sectors of society. Heads have rolled and bottom lines are jeopardised.

Does this really confirm that “bad ethics is bad business”? Of course not. There is no doubt many other corporations are profiting handsomely from deceit, lies, fraud and exploitation. The scandals of September 2015 show that “bad ethics is good business … unless you get caught”.

It’s not just about not getting caught. It is also about the political, legal, social and economic implications of being found out. In the cases of VW, 7-Eleven and Turing there has been a massive public and media outcry about their reprehensible and selfish behaviour.

Bringing these corporations to justice was not the work of one heroic individual, nor the result of government action. It was a collective effort that involved NGOs, scientists, academics, politicians, the media and the general public. This was a victory of civil society and democratic dissent.

So, we can reformulate our proposal: “Bad ethics is good business … unless you get caught … and as long as you aren’t the subject of a public outcry”.

Democratic business ethics

When corporations speak of business ethics their idea is that they can keep it all in house. The ethics of business is largely seen as a matter of corporate self-regulation so that pesky outsiders won’t stick their noses into corporate affairs. The September scandals suggest an entirely different ethics.

If we want ethics in business, what we need is more corporations being caught and more public outcry. For business ethics to be effective they must be pushed onto corporations against their will. Business ethics is democratic, not corporate.

What we can learn from the business events of September is that ethics cannot be left to corporations themselves. Business ethics requires a vigilant democracy where the public and its institutions will hold corporations to account for their actions.

Business ethics, to borrow a phrase, is about keeping the bastards honest.



#business coaching

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If you’re a small business owner, you probably know at least one business coach. You may even be one. It is a field that has exploded over the last few years. For small business owners, having someone to bounce your ideas off can be a truly valuable thing. That said, the main reason so many business coaches have popped up over the last half-decade or so is that it is easy to set up shop.

With the ubiquity of the Internet, all a business coach needs to get started is a website. Overhead is extremely low. What’s more, there are no real certifications needed. In short, a coach becomes a coach by standing up and announcing him or herself as a coach. The downside of this dynamic is that the most competent business coaches are lumped in with all the rest.

It wasn’t always this way. The earliest business coaches were almost uniformly qualified individuals–successful entrepreneurs, business owners, and modern-day philosophers–mainly because there were hardly any of them. Dan Sullivan, founder of the twenty-five year old, multimillion dollar Strategic Coach says that when he first went into business most people thought they were a bus company .

So what is a qualified expert in the information economy to do?

The answer is the same as so much else in the world of business: Specialize.

Take for example the New York company AcceleratingCFO. a firm started by two former Fortune 500 executives who felt they could impart their strategic knowledge to the entrepreneurs who needed it most. Yet instead of announcing themselves as one of many business coaching operations, they present themselves as CFO consultants –experts in using the quantitative aspects of an organization to make qualitatively strong business decisions.

Or take John Palumbo, the founder of Big Heads Network. A successful businessperson many times over, he teaches organizations to combine unrelated concepts to form innovative solutions. Despite the advice and counsel he provides, never once does the word coaching cross his lips or his website.

The market for expertise is as strong as it has ever been and can provide massive opportunity for savvy entrepreneurs. Getting specific around the precise value you offer and then crafting your messaging around that specificity is what every would-be business coach needs to do to thrive in the second decade of the 21 st century and beyond.

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.



#best small business to start

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The Best Business Opportunities 2015

The Best Business Opportunities for Starting a Small Business

One of the best businesses to start. Blend Images/Ariel Skelley / Getty Images

Welcome to my 2015 list of the best business opportunities.

These are the business ideas that I think will give budding entrepreneurs the best chance of making money in the coming year – and just as importantly, the opportunity to start a business that will last and make money for years to come.

Not all of them are ideas that I think will make you a fortune. Some have that potential. Others fall into the category of steady earners.

And some of the ideas on this list are, admittedly, more exciting than others. But if you know anything about business. you know that it’s often the simple, plain idea that yields the most as the most successful businesses meet people’s needs .

Remember; there are lots of business ideas that didn’t make this list that can be developed into successful small businesses. These are just ten that I think have great potential.

Image (c) Jose Luis Pelaez Inc/ Getty Images

Medtech, the business of creating and producing medical devices, has never been more accessible to just about anyone. The combination of inexpensive resources such as 3D printing and open-source software and hardware make producing prototypes much less costly.

And the medical technology market is booming; sales are expected to reach $228 billion by 2015 (Markets and Markets ). What could you create to make medical treatments easier and/or more effective?

Image (c) John Lamb / Getty Images

The last few years, social media management has been the hot IT-related business. But the big migration is on and 2015 is the year of the cloud. Many businesses are keen to get there but don’t really know that much about it. Others are hanging back because they don’t see the necessity and fear the disadvantages .

Knowledgeable IT types who can make the business case for moving various processes and apps to the cloud and do it for businesses have huge opportunities. The Advantages of Cloud Computing will help you make your case.

Image (c) Dave Mcleod / Susan Ward

Food safety is becoming more and more of an issue. It’s not just the burger meat or the undercooked chicken that’s threatening consumers now; even products such as organic lettuce have been subjected to food recalls. In self-defense, perhaps, consumers are paying more attention when they buy food and the local food movement is growing apace .

Combine the desire to eat-food-that-I-know with gluten free and peanut-free to create food products that people will find truly irresistible.

Image (c) Zero Creatives / Getty Images

The burgeoning numbers of senior baby boomers also provide burgeoning business opportunities for senior care. In-home care and senior residences are the obvious ones, but don t forget all the related opportunities such as driving, delivery, catering and cleaning services for seniors who want to stay in their homes. You can certainly develop your own business providing care for seniors, but there are also quite a few senior care franchise opportunities available.

Senior Moving Specialist

Image (c) Seth Joel / Getty Images

Aging sucks and one of the ugly aspects of aging that many people face is having to leave what’s been their home for many years and move into some place smaller. What makes it even worse is that many seniors in such circumstances have no one on the spot to help them. That’s why seniors real estate specialists are a growing niche market in Canada and the U.S.

And while to become a Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES) involves already being a realtor and taking a course designed by the National Association of Realtors, you don’t have to be a realtor to get into this niche market .

Patti Priestman’s Home Suite Home business takes a slightly different tack, focusing on assisting clients through every step of their move, from decluttering their current home through ensuring everything in is the right place in the new one.

Image (c) Ascent Xmedia / Getty Images

Forget spin cycling and Pilates – yoga is the fitness business to be in. The number of practitioners continues to grow each year, perhaps because yoga itself is so adaptable and accessible. Karaoke yoga. “Grey” yoga, hot yoga; there’s truly a yoga for everyone. Note that American spending on yoga products, from trendy attire and mats to studio classes, rose from $4.7 billion in 2007 to $7 billion in 2012 and is predicted to exceed $8 billion by 2017 (The Economist ) – so why not direct some of that your way?

Drones for Business

Image (c) Richard Newstead / Getty Images

Using drones for business purposes is an industry in its infancy but I think it’s going to grow up fast as more ways to profitably use drones are discovered. Using drones for surveying, crop dusting, search and rescue and checking out fires to see if it’s safe for firemen to enter are just a few.

As of writing, Transport Canada s rules for flying drones (a.k.a. unmanned aircraft systems) are much more favorable than those in the United States. where the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has until September 30 th to produce rules for the safe integration of drones into airspace. (Currently only recreational use is allowed.) The fear is that “potential benefits will be dampened by over-stringent rules ” (The Economist ).

Baby Products Online

Image (c) Glow Decor/ Getty Images

Inc. choose baby products as one of the best businesses of 2014, saying that “products from diapers, clothing, and shoes to feeding aids, strollers, and furniture defied the recession and remained in high demand” and predicting that baby apparel alone would bring in $6 billion in e-tail sales in that year.

Now consider that ecommerce is in its infancy in Canada (sorry; I couldn’t resist) and how easy it is now to get into ecommerce. Baby gear could be your ticket to big bucks.

Scooter Sales Service

Image (c) kali9 / Getty Images

We’ve all seen the ads with the fifty-somethings riding their motorcycles. But the truth is that the fifty-somethings are much more likely to be riding scooters – either because of mobility issues or because they want the convenience and small environmental footprint of a bike with the stability that scooters provide. If you choose this business opportunity, don’t forget to provide gear like helmets and riding gloves too.

Translation Services for Business

Image (c) 4X-image / Getty Images

Did you know that there are over 200 languages spoken in Canada and 381 spoken in the United States. Or that there are more than 6,700 spoken throughout the world?

Maybe not, but I bet you can see where I’m going with this. With ecommerce ever growing and increasing numbers of companies striving to sell to more than just the home town crowd, the need for websites. documents and videos to be translated into other languages is exploding.

Why Are These the Best Business Opportunities?

There’s never any guarantee when you re starting a business. Any business opportunity you re considering requires due diligence .

Once you’ve chosen an idea, the best thing to do is write a business plan ; it will help you determine if a particular opportunity is right for you.

None of these are get rich quick ideas or even the business ideas that I think will make the most money. But in my opinion, these are business opportunities that are going to provide real chances to make money in 2015 and beyond – businesses that, done right, in the right place and for the right people may be profitable enterprises for years to come.

Browse More Business Ideas



#sf business times

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Pure Storage Recognized as Top Workplace by San Francisco Business Times for Third Consecutive Year

All-Flash Enterprise Storage Company Ranks #2 Among Bay Area Companies with 101-500 Employees on Annual Best Places to Work List

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA – April 25, 2014 — Pure Storage, the all-flash enterprise storage company, today announced that it has been named to the San Francisco Business Times’ annual list of Best Places to Work in the Bay Area for a third consecutive year. The company ranked #2 in the medium-sized company category (101-500 employees), and received high marks for its meritocratic work environment, diverse and talented workforce, and thriving company culture.

The 11th annual Best Places to Work in the Bay Area awards were presented by the San Francisco Business Times and Silicon Valley Business Journal at a ceremony on April 17, 2014. Each year, the publications compile the annual list based on employee surveys that measure worker satisfaction across several areas, including personal growth, workplace environment and managerial effectiveness.

“Spontaneous fun” tops the list of employees’ favorite things about office life at Pure Storage. From impromptu Nerf Bazooka fights, to company-wide in-office bungee races, the “Puritans” enjoy a truly ‘work-hard, play-hard’ culture. The company’s smart, dedicated team and hands-on, “in the trenches” executive leadership were also highlighted by employees as being key to what makes working at Pure Storage special.

“It is an honor to again be recognized as one of the Bay Area’s top workplaces by the SF Business Times, and we are immensely grateful to our employees for their enthusiasm and support,” said Scott Dietzen, CEO of Pure Storage. “Ultimately, it’s the people and culture at Pure Storage that make our company great. We’re proud to offer a work environment where trailblazers, innovators and disruptors thrive. We look forward to adding more exceptional people to our ranks in 2014—in the Bay Area, and beyond—as we continue to aggressively scale our operations around the globe.”

Pure Storage was founded in 2009, with a vision to transform the enterprise storage industry. Since emerging from stealth in 2011, it has achieved unprecedented growth, expanding rapidly to meet global demand for its next generation, all-flash enterprise storage array. Even as it scales to support massive global growth, the company remains committed to preserving the culture, ethics and values it was founded on. To learn more about career opportunities at Pure Storage, visit: http://www.purestorage.com/company/jobs.html.

To see a complete list of the San Francisco Business Times’ 2014 Best Places to Work in the Bay Area honorees, visit:http://www.bizjournals.com/sanfrancisco/feature/best-places-to-work-2014/ .

About Pure Storage

Pure Storage, the all-flash enterprise storage company, enables the broad deployment of flash in the data center. When compared to traditional disk-centric arrays, Pure Storage all-flash enterprise arrays are 10x faster and 10x more space and power efficient at a price point that is less than performance disk per gigabyte stored. The Pure Storage FlashArray is ideal for high performance workloads, including server virtualization, desktop virtualization (VDI), database (OLTP, real-time analytics) and cloud computing. For more information, visit www.purestorage.com .

Connect with Pure Storage:

The Pure Storage and P logo marks, Purity Operating Environment and RAID-3D are trademarks of Pure Storage, Inc. All other trademarks or names referenced in this document are the property of their respective owners.



#business opportunity

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Business Opportunity

Definition:Legal definitions vary; in its simplest terms, a business opportunity is a packaged business investment that allows the buyer to begin a business. The Federal Trade Commission and 25 states regulate the concept.

A business opportunity, in the simplest terms, is a packaged business investment that allows the buyer to begin a business. (Technically, all franchises are business opportunities, but not all business opportunities are franchises.) Unlike a franchise, however, the business opportunity seller typically exercises no control over the buyer’s business operations. In fact, in most business opportunity programs, there’s no continuing relationship between the seller and the buyer after the sale is made.

Although business opportunities offer less support than franchises, this could be an advantage for you if you thrive on freedom. Typically, you won’t be obligated to follow the strict specifications and detailed program that franchisees must follow. With most business opportunities, you would simply buy a set of equipment or materials, and then you can operate the business any way and under any name you want. There are no ongoing royalties in most cases, and no trademark rights are sold.

Business opportunities are difficult to define because the term means different things to different people. In California, for example, small businesses for sale–whether a liquor store, delicatessen, dry-cleaning operation and so on–are all termed business opportunities, and individuals handling their purchase and sale must hold real estate licenses.

Making matters more complicated, 23 states have passed laws defining business opportunities and regulating their sales. Often these statutes are drafted so comprehensively that they include franchises as well. Although not every state with a business opportunity law defines the term in the same manner, most of them use the following general criteria:

  • A business opportunity involves the sale or lease of any product, service, equipment and so on that will enable the purchaser-licensee to begin a business.
  • The licenser or seller of a business opportunity declares that it will secure or assist the buyer in finding a suitable location or provide the product to the purchaser-licensee.
  • The licenser-seller guarantees an income greater than or equal to the price the licensee-buyer pays for the product when it’s resold and that there’s a market present for the product or service.
  • The initial fee paid to the seller to start the business opportunity must be more than $500.
  • The licenser-seller promises to buy back any product purchased by the licensee-buyer in the event it can’t be sold to prospective customers of the business.
  • Any products or services developed by the seller-licenser will be purchased by the licensee-buyer.
  • The licenser-seller of the business opportunity will supply a sales or marketing program for the licensee-buyer that many times will include the use of a trade name or trademark.

These are the most common types of business opportunity ventures:

Distributorships. A distributorship involves entering into an agreement to offer and sell the product of another, without being entitled to use the manufacturer’s trade name as part of the agent’s trade name. Depending on the agreement, the distributor many be limited to selling only that company’s goods or may have the freedom to market several different product lines or services from various firms.

Rack Jobbing. This involves selling another company’s products through a distribution system of racks in a variety of stores that are serviced by the rack jobber. In a typical rack-jobbing business opportunity, the agent or buyer enters into an agreement with the parent company to market their goods to various stores by means of strategically-located store racks. Under the agreement, the parent company obtains a number of locations in which it places racks on a consignment basis. It’s up to the agent to maintain the inventory, move the merchandise around to attract the customer, and do the bookkeeping. The agent presents the store manager with a copy of the inventory control sheet, which indicates how much merchandise was sold, and then the distributor is paid by the store or location that has the rack, less the store’s commission.

Vending Machine Routes. These are very similar to rack jobbing. The investment is usually greater for this type of business opportunity venture since the businessperson must buy the machines as well as the merchandise being sold in them, but here the situation is reversed in terms of the payment procedure. The vending machine operator typically pays the location owner a percentage based on sales. The secret to a route’s success is to get locations in high-traffic areas and as close to one another as possible. If your locations are spread far apart, you waste time and traveling expenses servicing them, and such expenses can spell the difference between profit and loss.



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Related Information

Small Business
Profiles

The 2014 Small Business, Big Impact: Alberta Small Business Profile provides useful statistics about the contributions made by small businesses to the provincial economy and their roles in some of Alberta’s important and growing industries.

Alberta Economic Dashboard

Alberta’s most important economic indicators, in one place. You can either get a quick snapshot of our current economic state, or explore specific indicators in detail.

Canada-Alberta job grant

Can’t find workers with the skills you need? Consider training new or current employees through the Canada-Alberta Job Grant.

Connectica Self-Serve Tool

Connectica is a new self-service tool for SMEs and service providers to connect with other provincial innovators.

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