It’s Easy to go Compostable

TIPA Compostable Packaging

As customers start to demand a more ecologically minded approach to purchasing, the provision of climate-friendly products has become increasingly important. TIPA Compostable Packaging was born out of the need to reduce plastic pollution and its success has seen it awarded Corporate Vision’s accolade for Most Influential Leader in Clean Technology – 2020. In the light of this victory, we profiled the company to discover more.

TIPA believes that in order for its packaging to be environmentally friendly, it should behave like an orange peel, which decomposes after wrapping a product, leaving no toxic residue. What remains of its packaging can be used as compost.

When TIPA was co-founded by Daphna Nissenbaum, it was on the ‘orange peel’ principle. The company aims to tackle a vital segment of the plastic waste challenge: flexible plastic packaging. Though rigid plastics are partly recyclable, flexible packaging isn’t, and it is taking up a growing portion of the world’s packaging market, due to being lighter, more convenient, and smaller in volume. Until now, environmental activism and waste initiatives have largely focused on recycling to solve the problem of materials like plastic, without accounting for whether or not the item is actually recycled. Conventional flexible plastic packaging cannot easily be recycled because its material is complex, contaminated by food, and too lightweight to be recycled on a practical scale. TIPA set out to replace a virtually un-recyclable offender with something that has the end-of-life of organic waste.

The company’s vision was to have it all. TIPA’s experts created flexible packaging that offers consumers and brands all of flexible’s positive elements, such as the durability, transparency and shelf life that they have come to expect from conventional plastics, with the same end-of-life as organic matter. Having come from a business background, Nissenbaum knew that compostable packaging could only hope to gain traction against its conventional counterparts if it met the same performance specifications as conventional flexibles, and fit seamlessly into today’s plastic methodology, logistics, and manufacturing practices. TIPA’s IP covers a range of one-ply films and multi-ply laminates with a range of packaging applications, including open bags, zipper bags, resealable bags, bar wrappers, and stand-up pouches, as well as reels of film for converting, flowpacks, and lidding for a variety of products and packaging types. All of which are manufactured and processed using existing chains of supply, allowing the company to scale up quickly, and globally.

TIPA’s products fit the bill in many respects. The films, laminations, and product applications are manufactured using the same machinery used to produce conventional plastics and because the product is formed from fully compostable plant-based and fossil-based polymers, TIPA’s packaging disintegrates within a few months in either home or industrial compost. This is a significant improvement on the hundreds of years that it can take for some plastics to completely degrade.

Food waste is a growing concern for food producers, governments, and consumers all over the world, and flexible plastic packaging has been one of the market’s solutions to shelf-life for everything from fresh produce to ground coffee. While this has been successful in lowering food waste during storage, transport, and distribution, plastic waste has reached unprecedented volumes and brands are seeking substitutes for plastic that protect their products without adding to pollution. TIPA’s packaging can already be found in major supermarkets in the US, UK, Australia, and Mexico, with no discernible difference to consumers but a considerable benefit to the environment. With products 20-30% bio-based as a minimum requirement, the positive impact is clear. Their packaging is used to bag bananas, flow-wrap granola bars, pack dried fruit and nuts, coffee, animal supplements, chicken, meat, bread, spices, and more in a growing number of retailers all over the world.

Other industries have made the step to finding more environmentally friendly solutions to their current contributions to the climate crisis, as well. As the textile industry produces an astounding 1.2 billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions every year – more than the international aviation and shipping industries combined – their need to find green solutions is paramount. TIPA is equipped to assist with is the staggering amount of waste plastic that the fashion industry creates. Some brands have already made deliberate steps to reduce their environmental footprint, finding sustainable alternatives when single-use packaging is necessary. Inditex has already pledged to eliminate single-use plastic packaging by next year, while top fashion designers such as Gabriela Hearst, Mara Hoffman, and Stella McCartney have already made the switch to compostable bags by TIPA.

TIPA has found itself on the brink of a new era, as the balance tips towards environmentally responsible innovation. Consumer’s attitudes are forcing government action, as well as market transformation. In a relatively new industry, market research firm IMARC Group sees a growth from $168 billion in 2018 to around $240 billion by 2024. At the forefront of this wave, TIPA has the incredible opportunity to take advantage and define the direction in which the industry goes.

With such a clear commitment to the environment, it can be of no surprise that sustainability is a priority in every aspect of TIPA’s operations. These commitments and goals are embedded into the mission, strategy and code of business conduct. All elements along the value chain, from the sourcing of raw materials to the components of the film, from manufacturing processes and delivery to end users have the principles of environmental responsibility taken into consideration. Assurance of the company’s compliance with environmental aims can be found in its adhering to EU 13432 and ASTM D6400 standards, with products, compounds and films also certified for both home and industrial composting through the OK Compost mark by the TUV institute.

The work of TIPA is perfectly placed to revolutionise the way in which the world sees packaging. This viable alternative doesn’t disrupt consumer or manufacturer practices, but is effectively disrupting an industry that has long needed the change.

Company: TIPA Compostable Packaging
Contact: Rebecca Najjar Rudick

Sales and Marketing Departments Fall Behind In Digital Transformation Projects

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Sales and Marketing Departments Fall Behind In Digital Transformation Projects

Research reveals that two thirds of sales departments are less than a year into transformation initiatives as lack of investment holds back progress.

Over two thirds (69%) of sales managers are less than a year into digital transformation projects, or worse, have no plans to transform at all, according to new research from Showpad. Almost half (48%) of senior sales managers admit that financial issues are a barrier to evolving their businesses, with teams struggling to secure investment within the organisation to drive innovation in sales, and technological and people issues follow close behind.

“Most organisations have embarked on operational and commercial digital transformation projects, but it seems that many are struggling to apply this to their sales team and buyer experience,” said Jim Preston, VP EMEA Sales, Showpad. “However, buyer experience is now the differentiating factor in the buying process, above and beyond product specifications or even price. Quite simply, sales and marketing professionals must transform if they want to provide the best, most insightful and personalised experience for their customers.”

According to the study, sales enablement is a key priority for most senior sales managers, with 53% ranking it as important, higher than any other type of innovation. Staff also ranked cloud technologies (46%) and marketing automation (45%) highly. However, with Salesforce recently noting that cultural and business model change are equally important to digital transformation projects, teams must be prepared to do more than write cheques for tech if they are to transform effectively.

Sales managers did admit that they face a number of organisational barriers, with 45% of respondents saying that their organisation was fundamentally unpractised at change. An equal percentage also said that a lack of buy-in, education and understanding held back sales transformation projects. However, with organisations such as Honeywell seeing an 83% increase in stock price after digitally transforming, there is little doubt that successful initiatives can be revolutionary for company revenue.

“Many sales leaders are trailblazers; one in ten [10%] are more than three years into a project that will digitally transform their sales departments, with one in five [21%] between one and three years in,” continued Preston. “These initiatives are vital: it doesn’t matter if you’re selling the most innovative product in the world if you can’t communicate the benefits to customers. Organisations like Sprout Social and Promega have seen sales enablement change all of this, turbocharging the sales process, making it an absolutely essential priority for organisations in 2020.”

Stylish Living

LivingStyles

As eCommerce has taken the world by storm, the challenge has been to find sellers that go above and beyond to provide excellent service. Australian-based LivingStyles is one of these exceptional online traders, bringing together a team that handles furniture and homewares online. As worthy winners of Corporate Vision’s eCommerce and Online Retail Award for Best Online Home Furnishings Retailer – Australia 2019, we take a closer look at the company to find out more.

Brought together by a love of furnishings, the team at LivingStyles excels in finding the highestquality furniture and homewares at a competitive price. Drawing on a large customer base, spread across the whole of Australia, the business is able to buy in bulk directly from the brand, passing on the savings to LivingStyles members.

Like all good retailers, LivingStyles has thrived thanks to an intimate knowledge of its products and immense respect for customers. While the business finds the latest and best design trends and products, customers can enjoy the benefits of free membership, discounted prices, reliable delivery and excellent customer service for those post-sales needs.

Supplying large items like furniture online could be considered odd, but LivingStyles has taken the approach of making it an innovation. While customers are unable to physically touch or see their products, the team provides as much information as possible about the item, with returns policies allowing customers to change their minds if necessary. With the ability to provide more design choices at a price that beats bricks-and-mortar stores, it can be of no surprise that this approach has taken off.

Taking advantage of the opportunities that being online presents, LivingStyles has used social media platforms to grow its audience. With Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest, it has proven possible not only to share design ideas with customers, but to expand the website’s reach into new audiences while creating a community of people interested in interior design. In the competitive world of online retail, the need to stay at the forefront of the technological battlefield is crucial. The logistics team always strives to improve order processing systems by developing unique programs to process transactions rapidly and ensure a quick turnaround.

The streamlined option system, for example, allows customers to select the delivery method they prefer, allowing them the satisfaction of receiving their goods safely without paying more. Couriers or removalists are chosen based on their appropriateness and economy, with these savings once again passed onto the customer. With such an individual approach, it cannot be surprising that an individual team drives LivingStyles forward. Uniquely motivated to provide a service of the highest calibre, the organisation is comprised of technical and industry expertise in furniture manufacturing, retail sales, graphics, editing, logistics and customer service. Because it is still only a small company, the importance of every team member operating on the same page is paramount.

At the heart of LivingStyles is a commitment to sharing goals and celebrating milestones, generally making sure that fun is had whenever possible. In the future, LivingStyles intends to make the most of the latest in technology with a program called O2O – Online to Office. This plan involves the opening of a furniture showroom with new technology displays alongside present customer features.

These plans will complement the work of the website, while providing the option of face-toface interaction between the sales team and the customer. It is hoped that this approach will give customers more confidence in the excellent work of LivingStyles.

A business proposition like LivingStyles could not have worked twenty years ago. Now it is a matter of convenience for the customer. Not only able to provide an impressive range of products but handling the delivery of awkward items to their new homes, LivingStyles has revolutionised the furnishings industry in Australia.

Company: Livingstyles.com.au
Contact: Customer Service Team
Email: [email protected]
Web Address: www.livingstyles.com.au

Implementing Innovative Functionalities into Future Products

APiS North America

Michigan based firm, APiS North America has been providing outstanding customer service and support to IQ-Software users in North America since 2016. Recently, the firm was recognized as one of the leading innovators providing functional safety software in the USA for 2020. Following this well-deserved recognition, we took a closer look at this unique business, discovering how the team at APiS North America goes the extra mile for each and every one of their clients.

As their name implies, APiS North America is the North American distributor for its parent company, APIS Informationstechnologien GmbH – the developer of the IQ-Software for performing robust risk assessments and optimization plans for products and processes. Just one of the methods included within the IQ-Software, the Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) is a commonly utilized approach. The IQ-Software provides the single, model-based data set for companies’ quality and safety programs to maintain an organized best practice program.

APiS North America serves a vast number of North and South American users of the IQSoftware industry. They provide training for the software with deep knowledge of engineering best practices, so they have the ability to help their customers effectively and efficiently utilize the tool for its robust functionality. Alongside this, the training and support provided by the firm ensures a deep understanding, not only of the IQ-Software, but also of the industry standards and systems engineering approach needed for today’s complex systems.

A shared customer need becoming increasingly common and noticeable throughout all the industries APiS North America works with, is the ability to perform in-depth analyses thoroughly and efficiently. The team at APIS North America is well aware of this trend and work closely with companies to help build the best quality and safety analyses. To deliver on this important, and necessary, need for their clients and the industries they serve by applying lessons learned from years of engineering practice and Design for 6-Sigma (DFSS) analysis. In other words, they understand industries’ best practices in the activities required to create an excellent FMEA and how to present the analysis and reports to for management and customer reviews.

APiS North America proudly serves a broad span of industries, with an accumulated client base across systems engineering, automotive, aerospace, AI, 3-D printing, alternative-energy, medical device and healthcare sectors. Historically, these are the most prominent industries to report difficulty in capturing and representing data and lessonslearned in a synchronized and comprehensive manner.

The firm proudly offers a level of excellent service that can only be delivered with the support of a strong internal network. Enabling this calibre of service, is the experienced, passionate, hard-working, and innovative team which forms the backbone of APiS North America. The team serves a large territory, utilizing one another’s strengths to achieve the highest level of customer service that they do each year.

As a result of the personalized service the team delivers and the extensive industry insight the firm provides, APiS North America has overwhelmingly received high applause, year after year, from their client base. The team has been met with a notable amount of rave reviews, specifically highlighting how they go the extra mile to ensure that they not only meet clients’ expectations, but exceed them at every turn. The secret behind their remarkable success? The team at APiS North America believes their focus on customer service, industry best practices, quality and safety of products and processes. And they do this while focused on providing the best FMEA tool, the IQ-Software, training and consulting.

The team at APiS North America will continue to grow with their customers’ needs and challenges in the years to come. Not only will the firm continue expanding the business, the team’s focus will be on the education and growth of the IQ-Software for quality and safety systems across all industries. APiS North America is committed to achieving the highest standards for their customers!

Contact: Lynn Johnson, PharmD
Address: 938 N. Washington Avenue, Royal Oak, 48067, Michigan, USA Telephone: 800-470-8970
Website: www.apis-iq.com
Email: [email protected]

Creating the Bond Between Brand to Human®

IDealogic® Brand Lab

Remarkable branding is much more complex and involved than simply a brand’s logo or visual communications. Worthy winner of Corporate Vision Magazine’s award for Best Branding, Marketing, & Advertising Agency 2020 – Texas, IDealogic® Brand Lab has found that great branding backed by science leads to influential positioning for any organization. The unique, Houston-based creative agency has created a proprietary, results-based brand science built around human behaviour. Here we take an exclusive peek into the secrets of the firm’s success and client wins.

As a full service, visual communications company, IDealogic® Brand Lab’s core focus is in complete brand creation and market implementation, including Brand Analysis, Brand Strategy, Company and Brand Culture engineering, Brand Experience, Brand and Marketing Communications. The agency specializes in the ART & SCIENCE of company branding. Though a boutique firm, the honed skills of the agency’s people make the company a powerhouse for creativity and strategic design.

As leading experts in the Art & Science of branding, IDealogic® is seamlessly positioned to work with any organization in order to produce results that not only draw in more sales, but also improve how their clients’ businesses function to ensure staff members are aligned and unified. As a result, companies thrive, drawing on the meaningful connections that make the biggest possible impact.

The brand’s approach to influential branding is vastly different from today’s industry standards; the industry-agnostic agency pushes the envelope where no other brand has been before. The firm’s staff accomplishes this feat by studying the psychology behind human behaviour and human nature and applying their findings to their branding.

The company’s Brand Science℠ has given IDealogic® the ability to truly understand human behaviour and brand development on a genetic level, becoming the catalyst that creates the bonds between Brand to Human®. This approach has helped the clients not only view their target audiences in
a new light, but to garner clear, measurable results in revenue, reputation, and brand loyalty.

“When you are inclined to build a meaningful relationship with someone, do you base it off monetary value, or is it because of common interests and principles? Why would the Brand to Human® relationship be any different?” – Ron Netanel, Founder of IDealogic®.

To be effective in branding, companies should aim to appeal to the needs and desires of the target audience in order to foster a relationship that can
be expanded upon through the sales of goods and services. IDealogic® firmly believes that every company, in every industry, should engineer its brand around the people who matter, so that the brand revolves around what it means to be human.

The Brand to Human® scientific approach is the foundation for IDealogic’s core beliefs. The firm stands on the principle that brands should no longer be intangible identities; instead, they should have personality and exist as human-like entities. This approach is a three-phrase process that carries great meaning and purpose, pushing businesses to work toward building relationships with consumers in order to garner the sale. With this innovative science, IDealogic® creates phenomenal, Fortune 500-caliber brand identities for small and mid-market companies looking to grow market share.

Typically working alongside mid-market B2B and B2C organizations with annual earnings that range between $50M to over $1B, IDealogic® has proven its capabilities to adapt and adopt in a vast array of industry segments. By focusing on building profitable relationships between companies and the people who purchase from them, IDealogic® has a track record that has garnered significant results for client partners.

IDealogic’s main goal is to capture market share for each and every client. The firm’s proprietary, scientific approach to branding, marketing, and advertising has positioned the brand with a unique advantage to develop strategies that free clients from stuck spots, help them see through blind spots, and turn business pain points into gain points. In most businesses, leadership have aspiring ideas to grow the company; however, a lot of these ideas are disjointed and do not work together for a consistent brand experience. IDealogic® focuses on the company’s pain points by analysing everything in the brand’s ecosystem. By doing so, IDealogic® can fill in the gaps with strategic brand solutions.

Per IDealogic®, the key to brand success is understanding humans and creating strategies that appeal to our desires, needs, and journey. The firm does this based on an understanding of human behavior, cultures, lifestyles, and aesthetic appeal. This process revolves around in-depth strategies that facilitate the customer experience and foster brand loyalty. Defining and creating the brand’s architecture, strategy, concept, and visual appeal are only some of the points in the Brand to Human® process that guarantee a company’s significant growth.

IDealogic® applies the Brand to Human® method to every client, strategically transforming the business model into a Brand Model® built around purpose, values, and meaning. In this way, everyone interacting with the organization—customers, staff, leadership, vendors, partners, etc., —benefits. Clients are reaping great rewards and long-term benefits by being able to understand their customers’ values and beliefs. These powerful results include increased market share, brand awareness,
and perceived value; the elimination of growth plateaus, the delivery of memorable customer experiences, and more. IDealogic® removes the guesswork for clients to see scalable growth and seamless engagement through market and competitor analysis, buyer persona and customer segment development, customer experience analysis and complete brand development strategy. This system is a major component of the agency’s Brand ScienceSM.

As a valuable asset across the branding, marketing and advertising spectrum, it is clear that the company’s scientific Brand to Human® approach is a method that is instantly transferable to a number of disciplines. Built on the science behind human relationships, IDealogic® is able to draw a deeper connection that allows the agency and its clients to reach significance. With no greater proof than the branding agency’s own success, we cannot wait to see what IDealogic® Brand Lab does next.

Company: IDealogic® Brand Lab
Contact: Ruth Netanel
Web Address: www.idealogicbrandlab.com

Award-Winning Digital Transformation Solutions

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Award-Winning Digital Transformation Solutions

Ospyn is a leading software vendor offering digital transformation to enterprises of various sectors through its Ospyn Docs platform. We profiled the firm and caught up with Prasadu and Kishore who revealed more about Ospyn and how they became the digital transformation solution of the year in India for 2019.

Established in 2009 by Prasadu Varghese and Kishore Kumar, Ospyn was created with a vision to become a digital transformation partner for enterprises by offering BPM, ECM and document management solutions for business process automation. Over a span of 10 years, Ospyn has evolved into a major player across 12 industries with 80 plus customers in India, Middle East and Africa.

For enterprises that are tethered with disconnected operations, paper-based processes and fragmented workflows, Ospyn acts as the digital transformation partner, bringing agility and automation across each of their operations, as Kishore explains.

“At Ospyn, our enterprise content management platform Ospyn Docs and BPM solutions are live across 12 verticals, enabling enterprises to manage their content, business processes, workflows and internal operations in one platform, thereby offering real time visibility, instant collaboration and quicker end results. With a decades’ presence in the industry, we take pride in streamlining operations and enabling enhanced customer experience for 80+ enterprise clients.”

Currently, Ospyn’s file flow solution is live across 60+ government departments, enabling them to go digital by automating their file processing and approvals. This particular solution helps to manage file-flow, inward processing, collaboration, archival, search, document management and also dispatch. In addition to this, the solution also eases the traditional processes with automated workflows and digital repository.

When discussing the various solutions the firm offers, Prasadu informed us about the clients Ospyn delivers, both their exceptional services and personalized services.

“We offer B2B solutions where our clients vary from government departments to high-tech digital enterprises. The approach to each client differs based on their requirements, people and business processes.

“For instance, we help our government sector clients to overcome their irrational barriers; both in terms of change resistance and technological ignorance by offering handholding and multiple training sessions to support their people transformation and process digitalization. Whereas for process oriented institutions and enterprises, we identify the bottlenecks in their business operations that are error prone and implement intelligent process management solution to streamline those industry specific operations.”

Enabling the firm to deliver this level of service, is the experienced and committed team which forms the foundation of Ospyn. Having established a strong internal culture, Kishore is keen to highlight the significant role the team plays in the overall success of the firm.

“It is no secret that our employees play a major role in bringing innovation to our core platform. Most of our senior tech giants are with us from the inception of the firm, and still continue to enrich our platform with advanced technologies and evolution as we expand the business.”

Since their inception a decade ago, Ospyn has established a strong client base in India and has recently entered the markets of Middle East and Africa. The firm’s content management platform has attracted most of their major customers and has earned them various business partners, system integrators, data centre service providers across the globe.

From the very beginning, the uniqueness and flexibility to fulfil the outgrowing requirements of clients has been a key point in defining the credibility of Ospyn’s products. Bringing the interview to a close, Prasadu signs off by revealing how Ospyn’s solutions have already established themselves a place in the market, as well as the plans the firm have in place to help them expand in the years to come.

“By replacing the prominent solutions offered by top players in the market, our platform has earned an identity of its own. With artificial intelligence and robotic processes, our platform is currently being enriched with advanced functionalities for an enhanced user experience. Going forward, we are in the pursuit of entering into European and American markets.”

3D Print Perfection

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3D Print Perfection

3D printing is still a relatively new field, opening the doors of possibility when it comes to the production of prototype parts or small runs for a niche market. Based out of London, 3DPRINTUK is at the forefront of SLS 3D printing, providing a service unparalleled in the United Kingdom. After eight years of business, we profiled this company to find out more.

Established in 2011 by founder Nick Allen, 3DPRINTUK has gone from strength to strength over the last few years. Able to handle every part of the process from CAD to finishing, the talented team has explored the potential of SLS 3D printing technology. Since opening their doors, 3DPRINTUK has produced items as varied as a CAT Scan for artist Dave Farman, a glider for James May and the trophies for the Men’s and Women’s Hockey World League Finals 2015. Some would argue that the potential for 3D printing is virtually endless, but to even begin to start looking into its possibilities, you need someone who knows what they’re doing.

The appeal of 3D printing comes from its ability to produce precisely calibrated parts without the need for expensive tooling or big runs. Instead of the use of moulds or subtracting material to produce a final product, 3D printing works by taking a digital version of an object, slicing it into thin horizontal sections and laying material down layer by layer. It is only recently that the machines used to generate these creations have reached a price that allows for commercial, or even home use.

3DPRINTUK uses top end machines that provide a fine finish on their products. Using a print bed of white Nylon powder, a laser melts certain parts of the print bed, ‘colouring in’ the areas to be printed. The bed drops by 0.1mm and is recoated with the powder for another print layer. This is what sets 3DPRINTUK above the rest, providing a smoother finish as the laser blends layers together, reducing the lines that are found on cheaper machines. The result is a strong, durable product, ready for a waiting client.

As so many types of 3D printing abound, from SLA to DLP to FDM, it’s easy to try and offer them all, allowing a variety of services to be undertaken. What has made 3DPRINTUK such a success is the specialisation in one sector of the industry. In focusing on the mastery of SLS technology, the team now know its strengths and weaknesses intimately, allowing them to push boundaries that other companies wouldn’t consider.

3DPRINTUK work with any client who has a requirement for small parts, ranging from students to artists to engineering companies. A minimum order of £40 means that the market leading technology that 3DPRINTUK provide is available and accessible to everyone.

Although the majority of clients are engineering companies who can’t afford their own in-house SLS machine, you can find oneoff clients for specific purposes such as Dave Farman, who’s request for a set of accurate rib cage and lungs was turned down by other companies but accepted and printed quickly at 3DPRINTUK. For some, producing items through 3DPRINTUK has meant a 70% saving, especially when the cost of injection moulding can be incredibly expensive.

The flexibility and potential of by 3D printing has made it incredibly popular amongst students looking to experiment with 3D design. These clients are often pushing for a quick turnaround, done as cheaply as possible. 3DPRINTUK offers a generous 20% off discount to students, as well as free advice on designs to help print as efficiently as possible.

Many companies take advantage of 3DPRINTUK’s ability to produce small production runs of bespoke products. With no setup fees or mould costs, 3D printing is able to act as a viable alternative to injection
moulding with the ability to order as many or as few items as required. Altering designs, such as personalisation for individual clients, costs as much as producing identical products giving 3D printing a significant advantage. The lack of tooling means that lead time is incredibly fast, with the current record being 6,500 parts produced in 24 hours, each identical to the prototype model.

Clips, mounts and fastenings are the parts best suited to batch production runs. The nylon used in SLS printing is strong, making it perfect for small fastenings and fixtures. Being small parts, it is possible to place these in and around other parts in builds that are made allowing for swift production. Tooling these parts would be difficult to justify on a low production run, making 3D printing the ideal, and most appropriate, solution.

While 3DPRINTUK is now well established within the industry, the company relied heavily on its website and tradeshows in the early days when it was getting started. Convincing clients that their particular brand of manufacture wasn’t just a gimmick, but a powerful tool in the design arsenal was a major challenge. Attending these shows allowed potential clients to see products in the flesh and assess the quality of the parts for themselves. A slowly transforming market that has become more informed about the nature of 3D printing has encouraged many companies to explore how to use this technology for themselves.

Of course, in selling the possibilities of 3D printing, it is possible that the media has overhyped its abilities. While theoretically able to create anything using this technology, with projects using complete mechanisms that have been 3D printed garnering media attention, the team at 3DPRINTUK advocate the use of appropriate materials for the job. Such mechanisms can use gears and steel rods for a fraction of the cost of 3D printing. This practical and economically minded approach is intrinsic to the attitude of the company, with Director Nick Allen founding the company in order to provide a friendly and trustworthy face to the industry. This has meant using his, and his team’s, experience in product design to ensure an expert eye remains on projects, suggesting alternatives if requested and appropriate.

2020 looks to follow much the same pattern as 2019, with incredible growth expected for 3DPRINTUK. The current plan is to increase capacity for printing with more machines and the introduction of more automation into the workflow. The company is also looking to introduce new materials beyond the nylon that has been the heart of the business since its inception. These new materials will complement, not replace, what is already available. As the company continues to grow, with 3D printing becoming more popular by the day, the challenge is to stand out amongst a sea of other companies and the rapidly lowering price of home 3D printing.

As a provider of SLS 3D printed parts for eight years, and printing nearly two million parts in that time, it would be fair to call 3DPRINTUK one of the most experienced companies using this technology in the country. With outstanding quality as a minimum, the level of service that 3DPRINTUK give their clients is exceptional. In the rare event of a problem with a part, this company will go out of its way to find the solution that works for their clients. This is what has allowed them to build up such an impressive reputation as a first-class provider of 3D printing in the UK, trusted by their clients to excel every time.

Turning Your Product Idea into Reality

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Everyone has a good business idea every once in a while. Of course, “good” is quite subjective here, as the true quality of the idea is always obscured by your own personal perceptions. But if you never even give those thoughts a try, there’s no way to know if they are actually worthwhile or not. That’s what separates successful entrepreneurs from the rest – they are actually willing to take that important first step and get their hands dirty trying to bring their idea into the world. If you want to go down that path, there are some things you should keep in mind.


Have a Good Business Plan

Having an idea is not the same as having a viable business plan. The latter takes some time and effort to build, but it’s important because you will need guidance along the way. Even if your plan doesn’t work out entirely – and few ever do – it’s still important to have some critical milestones set so that you can track your progress related to them. If you see that you’re hitting all those checkpoints faster than anticipated, that’s a good sign that you’re doing things right.


Sort Out Funding in Advance

Funding is going to be one of your biggest obstacles, especially if you’ve never done anything in the business world before. Maybe you have some money saved up, but even that might not be enough for some ideas. You should know what your options are for taking out a loan, especially when it comes to some special types of loans, like for real estate if your business idea will require a physical site. Sites like Crediful can be incredibly useful for this, as they can give you a good overview of the lending market around you in general, and point you in the right direction for the loans that can benefit you the most.


Promotion Will Be Crucial

You will not survive without active promotion. Especially not today in this heavily digital world. There are many ways to improve the exposure of your company, and you should look into them early on. Social media can be great for a more natural, organic campaign, but it’s not all there is. Simply setting up a website and promoting it in the right channels can be very beneficial on its own, at least when it’s done by the right specialists. And that brings us to another important point – you will need a competent partner for your promotion. While it’s possible that you may be able to do this on your own, it’s not very likely, unless you have specific expertise in the field of marketing. Give yourself some peace of mind and know that the job is done right by hiring someone competent.


Don’t Forget Customer Support!

A common mistake made by beginner entrepreneurs is to focus all their efforts into the main launch of the product, expecting to kick back and relax afterward. The truth is that the hard work is just beginning at that stage. You’ll need to put a lot of active effort into providing support for your customers, no matter if you’re selling a physical product or a virtual one. Things are definitely going to be more complicated with physical goods though because then you have to consider things like returns, repairs, and many other similar factors. If you’re not prepared for that in advance, it can ruin your company before you’ve even had a chance to figure out what’s going on.


Expanding

Sooner or later, you’ll need to expand. This is the ultimate goal of any company, after all, and yours will likely be no different. Even if you’re comfortable treating it as a source of side income, this will not be a sustainable model in the long run. This should ideally be part of your initial business plan. But with the way a company can expand in many different directions, it can be hard to predict its expansion needs at such an early stage. This is why it’s important to constantly revise your plan and touch it up on points that might be relevant to your future expansion and growth. Talk to specialists to prevent some of the common problems in this regard.

Some time from now, you might be looking at a very successful product on your hands, or you might be looking into closing down your company. The latter shouldn’t disappoint you though. At least you tried – and that already separates you from a large number of your peers. Even if you didn’t succeed in the end, you’ve gathered a lot of valuable experience that can help you in your next launch.

The Role of an Operations Manager in the Manufacturing Sector

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Operations managers are an essential part of any business, but even more so in the manufacturing industry. They’re ultimately responsible for turning your business ideas into fully functioning products and are a part of many different areas of the company. If you’re considering becoming an operations manager, read on to find out what the role entails as well as the key part the operations manager has to play in a manufacturing business.

Planning the Process

One of the main roles an operations manager is responsible for is, of course, planning. Without a plan, there will be no product, and with a bad plan, things will go wrong, or your product will not turn out the way it was intended. Operations managers need to make clear, detailed plans about each stage of production to make sure that the whole process goes as smoothly as possible. This means taking into account any goals the company is aiming for – for example, is the focus on producing a larger number of products that are a lower cost in order to win over customers with a cheaper price, or is there a focus on producing higher quality but more expensive products? There needs to be a clear aim of what is wanted out of the process in order to not only produce the ideal product for your business but also streamline the process, decide which process is best for your type of goods, and cut out anything unnecessary.

When thinking about your process, consider whether you’re going for made-to-order, mass production or mass customization. Made-to-order is best for those looking to produce a smaller number of a variety of products, since the beauty of made-to-order is that you can alter and customize each product according to the specific customer. Mass production is basically the opposite, where you’re producing a large quantity of identical products for a lower cost. Mass customization, however, is a mix of the two – cutting mass production off at a certain point and then customizing to the client’s liking, meaning you can get the best of both worlds by achieving something personal to customers but still at a large quantity and reasonable cost.

Maintaining A Professional Workforce

An operations manager isn’t just in charge of the production process; they’re also in charge of people. Managing employees has many different aspects – you have to make sure that efficiency is being maintained and employees are doing what they can to keep the process going smoothly. However, you also need to be on top of their satisfaction and wellbeing – low motivation, bad moods, lack of comfort, and bad conditions can all contribute to workers feeling uncomfortable and unhappy in their work, decreasing the efficiency and quality of production. Doing what you can and putting plans in place to keep employees happy will not only benefit the team and bring them together, but it will also improve the speed of your process and encourage a positive attitude to work.

Whether you’re looking at it from an individual perspective or a business perspective, looking after your employees and putting facilities in place to keep them happy will only benefit your company. It’s also important to include training for employees to keep them up to date with new technologies such as nanotechnology and reinstate what is expected from them. This goes for you, too – make sure you’re aware of everything going on and keep yourself up to date. Also ensure you have a lot of knowledge about what you’re doing to ensure you’re best prepared – taking a masters in operations management from Kettering University will give you all the skills you need to be informed and professional in an operations management role.

Location, Facilities, and Equipment Decisions

An operations manager is also responsible for deciding which site is best for your business, what sort of facilities are required, and what equipment and machinery will be needed in the process.

When thinking about the location of the site, it’s important to consider several factors. You should take into account where your raw materials are coming from as well as where you plan on shipping your final products to. This will minimize transport and shipping costs as much as possible. You also want to select an area where other costs, such as land, taxes, and utilities, are as low as possible to cut on expenses and dedicate more money to production. It’s a good idea to find an area where you’re likely to be able to access plenty of workers. Click here for more information on how to select the best location for your manufacturing company.

You also need to consider what sort of facilities need to be put in place not only for the production process but for your staff, too. Don’t forget to check everything thoroughly with the health and safety regulations in your area, or you’ll end up being shut down before you’ve even started.

Once you’ve worked out the basic facilities you’ll need, think about equipment. This includes machinery required in production, items needed for storage, equipment needed to both supply staff and keep them happy, and many other factors. You should also think about all of the materials needed to form your product.

As operations manager, you are also in charge of costing all of this, so budget everything, and see if it’s possible to drive these costs down. Filing down your expenses will give you a lot more leeway over your production and other aspects, such as the materials you can access, so you can improve your production process as well as gain a lead on other competitors in the manufacturing industry. Having said this, don’t be afraid to spend a little more on better quality items, especially if they’re long-lasting – although a cheaper price may be tempting, a longer-lasting and better-quality item will save you much more money in the long run.

These 3 key points are essential to an operations manager’s role, and with the right preparation, what can be an incredibly challenging task can be done swiftly and professionally.

How a chance encounter inspired my innovative business idea

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How are business ideas generated? Well, there is no correct answer. Successful business ideas are all around you. Some entrepreneurs spend hours doing market research in hopes to formulate an effective business idea, whereas others simply stumble across an innovative idea. We spoke to Charlie Howes, CEO and founder of Nude Life, to learn more about how a chance encounter inspired his life drawing business. With over 70 models in 6 countries, he talks about his biggest challenges of starting a business from scratch and his future plans.

 

How did it all began?

I’d just finished an internship in Seville which I started after finishing University in Bristol. The job didn’t pay very well, and it was in the middle of nowhere in a small quiet village in Sussex. Given this, I decided to take up a bar job in Brighton on the weekends.

I was working at the bar for quite some time, doing extra hours in the day to earn more money, stocking bars etc. when I happened to walk in on a stark-naked male in a room. I was pretty shocked, immediately turned around and left the room – it was the middle of the day after all. When my boss came into work later that day, I asked him why was there a naked guy in here earlier and what was he doing naked in the middle of the day?

“Well Charlie, that’s our new life drawing model for hen parties, he’ll be doing 3-4 events every Saturday day, so keep an eye out for him!”

“How much are you paying him to do that?”

“£100 per class”

“And he’s doing 3-4 events a day?”

“Yeah, and it’s cash in hand!”

I was stunned and immediately told him to sign me up, I even said that I would be happy with £90 per session (I knew he would love a good deal), and I’ll even make sure I entertain the groups better than him!

I started modelling and realised that this hen party activity was getting pretty popular, and there was no established life drawing brand in the marketplace (similar to what butlers in the buff does for naked butlers). This encouraged me to google domain names, and nudelife.co.uk was available, I had to snap that up straight away. It was £1 and is still the best decision I have ever made to date for Nude Life.

So that’s how Nude Life started, and currently we’ve got over 70 models in around 5-6 countries. It’s owned and run by myself and my family – my two sisters and my Mum. We all have out seperate jobs to do around our full-time jobs. It’s pretty lean, considering the volume of events we’re doing, and that’s down to streamlined processes and creating APIs between apps.

A great fact is that the original model I walked in on is now one of our own, and one of probably our most popular model we have!

 

Why were you inspired to start Nude Life?

I never realised this until recently, but the primary reason for starting Nude Life was due to the bureaucratic restraints at my 9-5. I’ve always been a bit of a risk-taker, had a real desire to learn and I like to move quickly. The role I was working in prevented all of these, so I was afraid I’d get left behind the crowd. Learning ‘on the job’ has been the greatest asset from starting Nude Life. All my knowledge from jumping in the deep end has helped me move forward in my career. Once you have that knowledge, a massive barrier is reduced in launching other startups and implementing it in other companies.

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How did your business get started? From the good, bad and ugly, what was your startup process like?


The Good?

The launching of the company was a lot easier than I thought. I used Squarespace as a template builder for the website, so I didn’t need any developers. I put a lot of emphasis around the name of the company. I knew this would help organic ranking, CTR’s, authority, and memorability in the future. Luckily, the URL I wanted was available for quite a generic keyword for the product/service. From then, you’ve got to create a feedback loop and iterate fast.

The Bad?

I remember one time I had a life drawing class in the Edinburgh for Nude Life and one in Brighton for the previous supplier I was working on weekends. I didn’t have enough cash in the bank for a flight at the time, so I drove between the locations! I think it took 8 hours in total.


The Ugly?

The biggest obstacle by far was my own doubts. I was paid quite well by the company I was already modelling for, so, I didn’t want to disrupt that. I had to fly under the radar for the first year (2016) as I wanted to use the money, I was earning from my two sources of income. I was my current employers competition, so that was pretty difficult at times! I think at times, working weeks 9-5, weekends and trying to build a company was prettyintense at times – looking back this probably impacted my mental health in some way.


What niche or hole in the market are you filling with Nude Life?

Ultimately, we’re filling the creative space where people can get out and do something different, explore different body types, meet like-minded people and learn a creative skill. Our bread and butter are hen do’s. Hens are going further afield, spending a longer number of nights away, and searching for more fun and sophisticated activities and places to stay. We have had weekends running 50+ events this year across multiple countries in Europe. Our main aim a couple of years back was to fill the hole for hen parties for life drawing, we’ve achieved that now with the volume of events we are doing and the number of models we have on our books – we’d like to maintain that but explore some other options too. We’ve recently launched corporate classes and public life drawing classes. The formats are different (less about having fun and drinking) and more about learning. We have a fantastic tutor we call upon from the Gagosian Gallery and some great models with all different body types and personalities.


How much has your business changed from day one until now?

In the early days we were just running hen party life drawing in Brighton. We moved on to The South East, now we have extended that to involve all the major cities across the UK and Europe. We’re now running corporate, birthday and public classes in areas of the UK too.


What are your biggest challenges in marketing Nude Life?

Nudity! Most advertising platforms have very strict nudity guidelines. So we just have to get creative 😉 check out our Instagram page @thisisnudelife What types of marketing are most effective for your business? SEO! That’s my professional background and what the company has been built on – we only run advertising in months we know that the cost of acquiring customers will be low.


What is the #1 lesson you learned since starting Nude Life?

I’ve learned that anything in life worth having comes from patience and hard work. With hard work and dedication, anything is possible.

What can we expect from Nude Life in the next year?

I would love it to become an established brand with a voice on nudity. We’ve always maintained we would like to be more than just a company generating profits, but one that has a voice. We’ve started a clothing line (tees embroidered with ‘send nudes’ on!) and I would love this to take off – although we haven’t been able to focus on this as much as we would like to. If we could run life drawing classes across the World, be it hens, corporate classes and public classes then that would be amazing!

Triggering A Growth Surge With Better Marketing

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Prime Product Consulting’s strong network of independent marketing professionals empowers B2B tech companies to exceed their own growth expectations. Recently named Corporate Vision’s Leading Specialist in B2B Marketing Strategies 2019 – USA in the Corporate Excellence Awards, the firm is constantly changing the game for its clients with its unique model of marketing consulting services. Prime Product Consulting CEO Adam Boone reveals the inner-workings of his award-winning company.

Since its inception more than a decade ago, Prime Product Consulting has provided marketing strategy, consulting, go-to market planning and execution services to start-up, pre-growth and other early stage companies.

Prime Product’s model is based on bringing in independent contractor consultants with deep experience in every facet of marketing. The team members have developed and driven successful marketing campaigns with market leaders like Microsoft, Oracle, Cisco, Avaya, GE, AT&T and many others.

This means Prime Product’s clients gain access to proven strategies and guidance used by market leaders without having to pay for expensive marketing firm overhead. Prime Product’s services are highly effective and accessible for smaller companies and start-ups looking to trigger growth surges.

“Essentially, we are basically the Uber or Airbnb of small company marketing,” Boone said. “We quickly bring in ultra-experienced marketers who can rapidly solve your specific marketing challenges when you need the help. However, you are not stuck paying for big overhead or a package of services you don’t really need. Instead you can think of it as high-powered marketing-on-demand.”

Prime Product offers a vast range of marketing strategy and execution services that enable small companies to launch with a bang, to create huge mindshare, and to generate major market demand.

“While many of our clients are in the technology space and business-to-business markets, we also work with retail, direct-to-consumer and services companies,” Boone said.

“We specialize in small-company marketing with expertise in goto-market strategies for start-ups, early stage and pre-growth companies. Our services fall into four primary service areas: Marketing Strategy, Content Marketing, Marketing Campaign Development, and Launch Strategies.”

A central part of the Prime Product model is to enable clients to take advantage of modern digital marketing practices. The firm has created an array of marketing strategy templates that capture industry best practices in areas such as product launches, goto-market strategies, Freemium strategies, Search Engine Optimization, use case development, marketing plan templates and many others.

A talented, dedicated and innovative team of independent consultants forms the backbone of Prime Product. Boone is keen to highlight the significant role the team plays in the firm’s overall success.

“All the associates of Prime Product are independent contractors, each with at least 10 years of experience in marketing strategy and execution for small companies and start-ups. That means we deliver successful, proven marketing programs on rightsized budgets.

“All the Prime Product consultants have played central roles in
launching and marketing startups in a wide range of industries. We know what works and we know how to maximize the impact of your investment.”

Looking ahead, Boone and the team at Prime Product have identified certain marketing challenges and trends that are important for small companies to stay on top of.

“A primary objective for many start-ups is establishing ‘Thought Leadership.’ This is where early-stage companies are driving innovation and disrupting markets as ‘thought leaders’ who are shaping the trends and direction of whole industries.

“We have created a practical framework for such strategies, based on successful innovation launches and market disruption projects we have been part of.

“Another essential challenge is about focus and picking the right marketing strategy. One of the hardest things about marketing is choosing a strategy and sticking to it. Early-stage companies in particular can get easily distracted by new customer needs that pop up as you engage with them. However, it is critically important for small companies to maintain focus and implement a consistent strategy.

“You should certainly experiment as you go and be able to pivot when something takes off. But you will never identify the thing that touches off your growth surge if you can’t maintain focus on a consistent core strategic path.

“Since our inception, we have helped countless small companies to refine and clarify their strategies, and employ techniques such as targeted messaging, framing, customer journey analysis and persona analysis. These are all part of effective strategic focus.”

Boone offered up these elements as parts of a successful formula for market disruption and rapid growth. Or, as he described it, “We enable our clients to punch far above their weight classes.”



Contact: Adam Boone, CEO
Company: Prime Product Consulting
Web Address: www.prime-product.com
Email: [email protected]

How to create an eco-friendly office

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With climate change high on the news agenda, and reports showing that there has been a 53% reduction in single use plastic in the last year*, we are more mindful of our energy consumption and contribution to the carbon footprint than ever before. But what steps are UK businesses taking to become more eco-friendly? 

Whether you are already making steps to become a zero waste office, or are a startup that wants to play its part in reducing emissions, the UK’s biggest independent tech retailer Ebuyer has five top tips on simple changes every office can introduce to create a greener office.


Be mindful of paper use

Excessive paper use is something that most offices will be guilty of, but is one of the quickest changes to implement. It is becoming more common for offices to implement a zero printing policy to keep the paper waste down, but asking employees to be mindful of what they are printing and reserving it for important documents only should see a drastic reduction in the amount of paper used each week. 

Another easy way to reduce paper consumption is by ensuring employees are not printing personal documents in the workplace – recent research conducted by Ebuyer found that over three-quarters (77%) of office workers regularly print personal documents while at work, with an average of thirteen pages being printed per person, per month – a substantial amount of paper use that can easily be avoided. 

Update the recycling options 

Recycling isn’t just for the home, and offices should be set up to let workers easily recycle – whether that be plastic bottles from a lunchtime meal deal, to completed documents that are ready to be shredded. Setting up seperate bins in communal places such as kitchens and near printers will encourage employees to think about what they are throwing away. For workplaces where workers can make their own lunch, providing employees with cutlery, plates and mugs will help reduce the amount of single use plastic that needs to be thrown away each week.    

Update your technology 

Technology is a necessity for many businesses, but simple changes to technology and habits can reduce your carbon footprint. New computers and monitors are more energy efficient than machines that are a few years old, so ensure you are monitoring this and replacing where necessary. If your technology is being updated, many businesses now offer the option to safely recycle your old appliances in line with the WEEE regulations.  

Standby mode is one of the most wasteful uses of energy, so make sure that when they are not in use, machines are shut down completely and multi-plug adapters are switched off by the mains. Not only will this ensure power use around the office is minimal, but it will save you money on your energy costs in the long run. 

Make the most of the environment

If your office or work space allows it, making the most of the environment can not only help reduce energy emissions, but can create a better working environment. Ensure artificial lighting is turned off in meeting rooms and spaces with plenty of natural light, and encourage employees to open windows to manage the room temperature, rather than relying on the air conditioning. 

Go green with office supplies 

From 100% recycled paper to eco-friendly cleaning products, making smart choices when it comes to your office supplies can make a huge difference to the environmental impact of your office. The majority of common stationery, from Post-it Notes to mouse mats, now have a sustainable option, so spending some time choosing the best option for you will pay off in the long run – both environmentally and financially. 

To find out more about Ebuyer’s business offering, visit: https://www.ebuyer.com/office-stationery