How Africa Uses Mobile Phones

If you’re using a mobile phone in Africa you’re likely paying for credit as you go, whenever you need the data or call time. Pay as you go credit is by far the most popular option for the majority of people across Africa, but mobile contracts are beginning to get a toehold in some places: mostly the larger cities, where leading smartphone handsets are starting to become available but are beyond the reach of the majority of people without structuring the payment through a contract.

In South Africa, the mobile contract market is still finding its level: while it’s cheaper overall to get onto a contract, the savings seem to be disproportionate to those paying as they go.

One writer noted that the data market in particular is very regressive in South Africa. As the country has some of the expensive prices for data in the world, people who can afford a contract get a much better price for their data over time than people who buy it only when they need it. It’s effectively more expensive to be poor.

As the majority of people in South Africa are still on pay as you go packages, rather than contracts, they’re at a profound disadvantage: not using one is hardly an option as so many vital services are available via mobile, including mobile banking, and health guidance and weather advice. The main problem here is that these services are disproportionately needed by poorer people in more rural parts of the country. Those in cities have access to physical banks, doctors’ surgeries and as a rule their jobs are less dependent on the weather.

Isolated rural communities have been increasingly revolutionised by their access to internet services, with mobile banking getting many people into the banking system for the first time which is much more secure than their previous need to keep physical money in their house or on their person.

While there’s clearly a large market for a contract that serves the needs of these people, a side effect of the pay as you go model is that it allows friends and family have migrated as members of the African diaspora to send credit home using international mobile top up services. This is a vital and popular way for people living abroad to make important contributions to the lives of the people they have left back home, and for now it’s not going anywhere.

How to Qualify as a Social Worker

Whether you’re doing your GCSEs or A Levels and thinking about your future, or feeling trapped in a stale career and looking for a change, you may want to look into social care jobs.

The Social Work sector is a chance to work with people who really need you, and go home at the end of the day knowing you’ve made a real difference to the world. In our increasingly digital economy, being able to see the results of your work so clearly is rare and precious.

If you’re interested in Social Work, you’ll need to qualify first: social workers need to complete a course approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). Many universities offer such courses, so you’ll need to pick the one that feels right to you.

Picking a university isn’t always easy: it’s more complicated than looking at the league tables to find which ones provide the best results. You’re going to be at this institution for three or four years so you need to feel comfortable and at home there. This will govern whether you pick a quiet, studious university or one with a reputation for an exciting nightlife. If you prefer the diversity of a big city you might want to study in London, but if you feel this would provide a distraction from your studies or simply aren’t at home in big anonymous cities, a more enclosed, ‘campus’ university on the fringe of a small town will suit you better.

The social work degree will include classroom training on techniques, and the law governing social interventions, as well as hands on experience and work placements, giving you a clearer idea of what social work is like.

If you want to boost your chances of being accepted onto your favoured course and stand out later in job interviews, it’s worth looking into volunteering before you study. Charities offer aspiring social workers the chance to help out in their local communities. This could also help you decide if social work is really for you – as the realities can be different to your ambitions when you first begin training.

If you already have a degree you may instead be able take a masters or conversion course to help you being your career more quickly – Skills for Care is the industry body that can help to advise you on your best route into the profession.

Now is an exciting time to enter social care, with new approaches revolutionising the field, and helping to create new opportunities for everyone.

A Call To Action

I think it is important not to forget about a ‘call to action’ on your website. Creating a call to action does not have to be difficult and it might result in higher sales or in higher subscriber numbers. Let me give you an example. If you are a blogger, then there are a few things you may want to do. You can ask your readers to subscribe to your feed. This is a good example of a call to action and it often works if your articles are interesting. You may also encourage them to sign up to your newsletter or even encourage them to leave a comment. Do you have any thoughts what is the best way to achieve it?

Customer Service in the Digital Age

From time to time we all have to contact a customer service, maybe because we bought something that is faulty, or maybe we have not received a product that should have arrived some time ago. There are so many reasons to contact such services these days that most of us have probably had some dealing with them during the last month or a couple of months.

Depending on the customer service I have contacted, I am sometimes left feeling hot or cold. Of course, I can easily recall those situations in my life when I was happy with the service I received (you will know what I am talking about here once you visit www.contactcustomerservicesnumber.co.uk), but at other times I was completely unsatissfied or even offended.

Probably the biggest complaint I have towards many customer service employees is their rudeness. I understand that not everybody is a happy person like me, but being rude on the phone for no reason just doesn’t justify the means. I just hope that every time I speak to somebody who doesn’t seem to be fit for the job he or she is going to be soon replaced by somebody who actually enjoys speaking to people and helping them instead of just choosing to be not nice for no apparent reason.

Below you can find a very interesting infographic that shows that the customer service has generally improved for the last couple of decades thanks to the progress in technology. You can join a discussion at #AtYourService if you feel like voicing your opinion on the topic. How has your recent experience leave you feel: hot or cold? Was there anybody in particular recently who either was very helpful and friendly, or on the contrary: rude and unhelpful? Feel free to share with me your experiences as I myself would like to know that I am not the only one who wishes that some people out there working in customer service behaved better than they currently do.

Zoopla for Students is on the Way – From Cardiff!

Find a home when you’re a student is no picnic. People give conflicting advice. Some say you need to look early or all the best houses will go, while others will tell you that is intended to create a false panic. Universities might have a list of trusted landlords, but in practice demand for housing might by far outstrip what they can offer.

When you’re young and searching for a home, maybe for the first time, this can be very intimidating, and it’s hard to know what to do for the best. If you’re studying the in North, finding yourself moving out of University of Huddersfield accommodation and into a private house could feel more like a gamble than a proper choice.

One group of Cardiff students was so put off by the situation, they decided to something about it there and then. Jack Jenkins is the founder of a new Zoopla-style solution for students across the country.

He registered the name ‘University Cribs’ in the heat of his frustration as he and friends tried to find somewhere to live. He didn’t have a business plan yet, just an idea that things had to be better and the beginnings of a plan to get there.

Today University Cribs has launched: it’s been rolled out to more than 24 University towns across the country, and valued at £1.1 million. It links students with the landlords who let to them. More than Zoopla and the like, though, it offers interactivity, specific to the student housing situation. The University Cribs site offers advice and articles to help students navigate the housing market, and through their social media presence offer events to help students looking for groups to share a house with.

University Cribs is making waves by really serving the needs of students: it helps to inform them about the housing market and how to navigate it. It gives them the chance to meet other students in the same situation to pool resources and find places to live. University Cribs stops the endless trudge around different letting agents, looking at different houses, so students can group up and make a short list of houses to look at over an hour in a café, in the pub or in bed: wherever they have wi-fi.

Storage

If you are like me, you like to shop a lot and you don’t have a really big house that would allow you to store everything in it (who has big houses these days anyway and who can afford to buy anything they want without having some sort of option to store their belongings somewhere other than their own house?). As a matter of fact, this is something I have been struggling for a really long time now: I want to buy even more, but there is absolutely no way I would be able to store all this stuff at home. Because of this simple fact already some time ago I started thinking about hiring a self storage unit that would allow me to store without the need to sell absolutely everything that I have.

If you have just realized that you store in your house more stuff than you have space to put it in, this does not have to mean that you have to move out or throw some of your things away. There is another simple solution: storage units such as storage units Columbia.

Self-storage facilities became very popular recently and it seems that more and more people around us start using them quite successfully really. The question many of them ask is the following: Why would you throw some of your stuff if you can store it in a unit in a storage facility, to which you can have access at any time you want?

You will have to consider many things prior to renting a self-storage unit. A good self-storage facility will offer you everything you need. In order to have peace of mind, you need to know that your stuff is safe somewhere where nobody can access it. When you decide to choose a facility, make sure to choose one that offers temperature control, security and safety, possibility to access it any time, remote access keys, and much more. Once you are satisfied with your unit, be ready to pack your stuff up. It is time to move it where it is going to stay for many years.

Separating Business and Personal Life

As a business owner, you need to remember about separating your business life from your personal life. One of the ways to accomplish this is to use your business credit cards and your personal credit cards separately. Every time you decide to purchase something for your business, make sure that you are going to use one of your business credit cards. If you plan to shop in a grocery store, which has nothing to do with your business, always use your personal credit card. Separating business and personal life will allow you to keep track of your cash flows. It will be also easier for you to keep track of your taxes.

How to Become a Musical Entrepreneur in the DJ Business

Starting and managing your own business is a dream come true for many people–especially if it involves doing something you enjoy. Are you thinking of running a DJing business? The good news is your services will be in demand.

There are countless events, parties and festivals that require good music. And, when you come equipped with the ultimate in VST plugins, your set will be the talk of the town. Keep reading to learn more.

Get Experience First

The only way to understand your business inside and out is to start working. If you want to run a successful DJ business, you must first get to know what it’s like to be a DJ. Understand the rates and the demand for your line of work.

Network with people who can either give you business or refer you to people who can give you business. Check out your local market and your competition. You’ll make better decisions as a business owner when you have first-hand knowledge and experience.

Write Out Your Business Plan

Regardless of the business you’re in, you will need a smart business plan. This is what is necessary to get your business off the ground. Your plan should include a budget and capital requirements. In addition, it should include a marketing plan–this is how you plan to attract a steady stream of clients to your business.

You also want to think about expansion plans. Do you want to keep your services strictly to your home base, or would you like to expand to other markets? If you would like to eventually expand, how would you change your advertising techniques to attract clients from other towns, cities and countries?

A business plan is essential because if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

Raise Money

Every business venture requires capital, even if you operate out of your home. There will be marketing costs, equipment costs, communication costs, travel costs and more. You might even have equipment storage costs when it is not in use. If your business expands, you will have to hire employees.

The best thing you can do is put some of your own money aside for your business, and then find someone or people who would be willing to invest. If you’re good at what you do, then this shouldn’t be much of a problem. You can ask family members if they would like to invest, provided they are willing and interested.

Moreover, you can also apply for a SBA Loan through the U.S. Small Business Administration or your bank. If you start small, you won’t need to raise a lot of capital at first. If you can’t afford to buy equipment, you can always rent it.

Think of What You Can Offer

How will your business operate? Often, a DJing business will feature packages such as hiring a DJ by the hour or even a full day package. You can even offer master of ceremonies services. Think of your target market/markets and audience. Then, think of what types of services they would like.

In Conclusion

As you can see, it is not that difficult to start a DJing business. Although, it helps if you have experience and capital before you launch.

 

 

 

 

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Credit Cards and Restaurants

Do you think that your credit card details are safe at the restaurants you visit? Even though in most cases your credit card details are safe, hackers have ways to hack into cash register terminals in order to steal credit and debit card numbers. Such details are often sold later on the Internet, and you can imagine what problems it might cause.

I remember that a few years ago, there was a situation like this, as two hackers managed to hack into 11 Dave & Buster’s cash register terminals. It has been said, that they captured data of about 5,000 credit and debit cards, which is a quite large number considering those were only two hackers. While I am not saying we should not visit restaurants, I think that we should look a little bit deeper into possible security vulnerabilities at such establishments.

Challenges Your Business Can Face and How to Survive

Now is a tricky time to be running a business. With Brexit on the horizon causing economic uncertainty, it’s hard to make plans past the next year. It’s easy to worry about the problems you can run into with your business and not enjoy the unique rewards of the entrepreneurial life.

Doing a bit of research and planning can help your mind to rest a little easier, and with that in mind today’s short guide covers a few of the issues you might run into and some suggested solutions.

Losing Your Premises

One of the most devastating things that can happen to your business is losing your premises. Whether it’s due to extreme weather like storms or flooding or a sudden rise in rent from our landlord, not knowing where you can call home could put a stop your company altogether.

Looking into local storage facilities can help to assuage your fears here. If you’re looking for storage London alone has so much to offer you’ll be spoilt for choice. You’ll know you have a fallback: somewhere to store your most important assets and even carry on some of your work if you can, to keep up a trickle of revenue.

Ballooning Costs

In the early days, most businesses are founded on one USP: a service or product that you can provide cheaper or better than anyone else. Preferably both. It can be dangerous if this foundational offering becomes too expensive: a supplier unexpectedly raising prices might mean you’re not able to remain open.

To avoid this, you need to diversify as soon as possible: once you have loyal customers you can start researching for other products and services that serve them. Finding more to add to your offering without eroding the identity that brought people to you in the first place is the key to success.

Losing a Key Client

This is the opposite of the problem above: the last issue was caused by being too reliant on one product. This is caused by being dependent on one customer. While a big contract from a single client is important early on, if they go elsewhere you have nothing to fall back on.

As above it’s important to take steps to diversify out. You could try asking your primary client for endorsements or recommendations, possibly in exchange for a small discount on future orders. It’s also worth looking into mutual marketing schemes with complimentary businesses: where you’re not in direct competition you can benefit from each other’s customer base and build your market together.