Category Archives: Uncategorized

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FM Stepping Up to Deliver Strategically

There has been a lot written about facilities management finally having centre stage to offer organizational strategic advantage. But is this really true or just rhetoric?

The first thing to recognize is that Facilities Management has had negative press in the past, and has been seen as a stuffy and archaic profession that only really focussed on getting the office carpets cleaned, and making sure there were supplies of tea and coffee.

Yet the strategic positioning of FM is far from rhetoric and there are a number of key areas of opportunity that can be exploited.

  • Catering to attract clients

Michelin star chefs, private dining rooms, and exquisite ingredients offered in office environments can attract new clients, or at least sway them to be keener to have meetings and appointments in your office space.

  • Video conferencing v travel

Many organizations are operating more globally than ever before. This naturally results in requirements for individuals to travel which can become incredibly expensive, and time consuming for employees as they wait around in airports and so on. There are now a number of more cost effective options such as video conferencing which has become so advanced that participants can almost feel that they are in the same room.

  • Optimising office space

Organisations can produce a lucrative revenue stream from leasing floors and space from within office buildings. This might be a lease or sub lease depending on the ownership status, but by strategically evaluating the space, there could be money to be made.

Summary

Organizations are looking for strategic advantage in places they have never looked before. The great thing about Facilities Management is that it has been previously fairly untapped, so there is a wealth of opportunity. It is such an interesting time to work within a Facilities Management role and a perfect time to consider the FMP qualification.

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2017 Digital Marketing Trends to Watch

By Luci M Iley

A lot has changed in the digital marketing world throughout 2016, and 2017 is set to capitalize on those changes and take digital marketing innovation even further. Here are the top 4 digital marketing trends to implement into your business strategy to stay ahead of the competition over the next 12 months.

 

  1. Virtual Reality (VR)

VR has blown up in 2016, from a pipe dream of hardcore gamers, the market has boomed with affordable smartphone adapters, turning video and game content into interactive, real-time, virtual reality seemingly overnight. This is a trend that businesses need to capitalise on as soon as possible, ahead of the inevitable over-saturation of marketing on the platform.

 

  1. Interactive Content

From quizzes to interactive data charts, people are becoming more and more attracted to content they can feel involved with. It is best utilised in short bursts to accommodate the short times most consumers spend using their mobile devices or browsing social media, however.

 

  1. Video and Live Streaming

Continuing the trend of the past 3 years, video has seen even more growth in the online and social media content marketplace. With many platforms offering the opportunity to ‘go live’ or otherwise live stream events and content, this is another trend which developing companies will need to embrace in order to get ahead in 2017.

 

  1. Personalisation

Users are bombarded with so much content, whether for marketing or entertainment purposes, that only truly special pieces are guaranteed to grab their attention. By using data such as cookies to personalise the user’s experience, your business is guaranteed those extra click-throughs and conversions.

 

  1. Mobile, mobile, mobile

Pushed from every angle, but never more important than now. Google have announced mobile-first web search algorithms, putting mobile-friendly sites ahead of unoptimized content in search results, and mobile browsing has finally overtaken desktop browsing as the main way in which users are accessing content online. Businesses still behind with mobile optimisation really need to act fast to get ahead in 2017.

 

With so many emerging digital marketing trends, it can be hard to keep up. Why not take an online digital marketing course to help stay up-to-date and give your business the edge in 2017?

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What is the Difference Between Planning, Budgeting and Forecasting?

 

By Aimee Mhaolcraoibhe

The difference between planning, budgeting and forecasting may not sound like much at a glance, but in terms of accounting there is every difference between them.

Planning

Planning is always the first step of any business. Figuring out how a company’s finances lay in the short term and in the long term is essential to setting up a viable business and maximizing the available assets to the best effect of the company. In the beginning a business does not have their own set of knowledge to draw from in relation to how much it will cost to operate, so it is often the case that businesses project their needs based on the needs of comparable businesses that they have been able to glean information from. Adapting the plans ongoing to incorporate new information will create a solid workable plan based on a business’s actual needs in the long run.

Budgeting

Budgeting is simply making sure that there is enough money to cover all of the outgoings that it will take the business to operate. This must take all financial factors into consideration and has to be accurate. This step is mounted after the planning stage to facilitate operations.

Forecasting

Forecasting is only commenced after the planning and budgeting has been effected. Once the business is operating and paying for all outgoings they begin to earn a profit. With this profit the business is then able to project future profits and to consider how they might reinvest those future gains into expansion. Planning forecasts that are timely in nature are key – making goals in the short term and long term separately to have a path that can be tracked. This will ensure that the business continues expanding and progressing as planned at the outset, thereby acting as an outline of future business paths.

If you want to learn more about the subject, why not consider a professional qualification such as the FP&A program, which will enable you to become an expert in the field.

 

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Running Effective Meetings – For PMs

By Rebecca Langdon

Project Managers chair a lot of meetings. That is a fact. I have met a few PM’s in my time that have laid down rules at the very beginning of the meeting, which done badly can come across as slightly dictatorial, and turn the group off before the meeting has even started. However, establishing rules is important if you are going to make most effective use of time. These are our top 4 tips:

  • Agenda

An agenda is important because it lets everyone know what will be covered, and who will be contributing so that they can prepare in advance. The agenda also indicates who should attend, and also provides a way to circulate the actions from the last meeting.

  • Respect peoples’ time

Have you ever been sat in a meeting that is overrunning and you have switched off as your head is already in the canteen? Or perhaps you have another meeting you have to attend. A good Project Manager will chair the meeting so that it runs to time, and respects peoples’ time.

  • Blackberry ban

Some people are addicted to their mobile devices, and others think it is imperative that they check it constantly throughout the meeting. This behaviour makes it really hard for the person speaking at that particular moment to feel like they are being listened to. The best thing to do is politely ask that device use is done outside of the room. Do this at the beginning of the meeting and gently remind anybody who ignores the request.

  • Note keeper

As a PM you will either be responsible for minute taking, or you will be responsible for delegating the task. If you are the facilitator and the minute taker, it is really important to try and master taking short hand notes which you can type up more comprehensively later. That way you are making eye contact and engaging in the meeting, as opposed to be head down scribbling away.

Summary

Meetings are well known for encouraging bad work behaviours. However with some simple pointers implemented as suggested above, I am sure your meetings will be productive and run more smoothly. For more information about a Project Management certification, take a look here.

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 4 Quality Decision Making Six Sigma Tools

By Rebecca Langdon

Six Sigma has tools which allow organizations to make quality decisions. We all know that an organizations ability to make good decisions quickly is imperative to their success in the modern day economy.

Multi-Voting

The facilitator helps the team devise a list of potential decisions or improvements. Then a specific number of votes is given to each participant which they can then allocate to the options. The decisions or improvements with the most ideas may then go through another round of multi voting depending on the original number of options, and the desired number to implement.

Failure Modes and Effects Analysis

This is essentially a risk assessment whereby the team are asked to consider all possible problems which could arise in each particular improvement if it were to be implemented. They then rate the likelihood of it happening, the impact if it did, and the likelihood of early detection before the impact. That then produces a rating which allows the team to determine a solution.

Pugh Matrix

Team members compare improvements using a simple rating system whereby a list of criteria are established and a weight is agreed for each criterion. The weight itself relates to the importance of the improvement for reaching organizational or project goals. The criteria are compared against a standard which is usually the current situation. For each of the criterion the team member will decide if the improvement would be better or worse than the current situation. The total for each improvement based upon the weightings and ratings will guide the final choice.

Summary

Six sigma itself is a set of tools and techniques to improve processes. Of importance is making sure that the improvements to be implemented are going to contribute maximum organizational benefit, recognising that there will be resource constraints for any changes made. In all cases, Six Sigma encourages team based approaches to decide upon which changes will be implemented. To become accredited in Six Sigma, you could undertake a Certificates in Quality.

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Do You Know Your DMAIC From Your DMADV?

 

By Kate Rawdon

 

Lean Six Sigma – and its alternative program Six Sigma - has a number of tools and methodologies that are unique to the program, and can be applied to almost any business to assess and improve the way it works.

 

There are two main methodologies involved in Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma, these are known as ‘DMADV’ and ‘DMAIC’.

 

Each of these is a five-part plan which sees an improvement to your business or design through from end to end. ‘DMAIC’ is what we teach through our Lean Six Sigma courses, and ‘DMADV’ is for more design-focused Six Sigma training.

About DMAIC

DMAIC is a five-part system for improving processes within a business. It can cut down waste, costs and time, as well as increasing profitability.

It stands for:

  • Define - work out what the processes are
  • Measure - accurately measure their available data
  • Analyze - assess the data collected
  • Improve - make improvements to the process wherever possible
  • Control - put measures in place to make these improvements permanent

The program explains how to go through each of these steps, and the end result will be a measurable reduction in costs and waste, and an increase in profits, wherever there’s the potential to achieve it.


About DMADV

DMADV is another five-part process, but this time specifically for design. It aims to create better designs with minimal room for error, cutting down on time and costs, and creating more market opportunities.
It stands for:

  • Define - find the specific aims for your design
  • Measure - work out the vital characteristics your design must have
  • Analyze - assess and develop your design
  • Design - create a new design
  • Verify - finalize the design and start production

Universal rules and tools

Whatever business you find yourself in, and whatever problem you need to identify and address, these rules and tools taught by Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma can help.

 

They’re tried and tested, proven over and over again all over the world and across many different industries.

 

We don’t teach DMADV, and instead we concentrate on the process-focused DMAIC. Learning this key principle of Lean Six Sigma is not only incredibly valuable to the business you’re with right now, but also significantly increases your own value in the job market in the future.

 

This is because businesses are aware of how valuable Lean Six Sigma training can be, and the positive effect it can have on their bottom line, so consider enrolling with us an investment in your career potential.

 

Morgan International offers the Lean Six Sigma Certification Courses in partnership with BlueSkye Track and the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College. Explore our online workshop offerings in more details here.

Lean Six Sigma

Morgan International Launches Lean Six Sigma Online Courses in Partnership with BluSKye Track

November 15, 2015, Beirut, Lebanon: BlueSkye Track, Inc. (BST), through the Lean Six Sigma Program at Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College, is pleased to announce the launch of a new global collaboration with Morgan International, a leading professional development training provider with established offices in 34 locations worldwide.

The new partnership will support the establishment of BST’s Online Global Campus to serve the needs of professionals and participants seeking certifications in the area of Lean Six Sigma and Quality Management training.

“We are very excited to be partnering with the Lean Six Sigma Program at Thayer School of Engineering and BlueSkye Track", said Morgan International CEO Fadi Ganni. "One of the challenges in the current competitive business environment is the gap between academia and the job market as well as the need for continuing professional development during a career lifetime. Our partnership is designed to provide program participants access to internationally renowned, industry-oriented learning and certification from one of the most prestigious educational institutions in the world."

Dr. Ron Lasky, Director of the Lean Six Sigma Program Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth, adds “Building knowledge and developing the skills for career advancement are essential and our programs provide a flexible path to earn these valuable credentials”. Larry Parah, President & CEO of BlueSkye Track, Inc. said: “We are excited about our new partnership and the opportunity to expand across global markets. The ability to offer our programs in a combination of live-online and in-classroom instruction provides a convenient learning process that encourages dialog, involvement and support. Improving and expanding professional skillsets, all with Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College certificates, is an asset that has indispensable value for employers as well as employees.”

The new Online Global Campus initiative provides a user-friendly internet interface and direct access with instructors, extending corporate clients and individual learner’s access to a variety of quality training workshops.

“Our commitment is to maintain the superior quality of our program regardless of the methods we choose to deliver content” said Dr. Lasky.

To view the complete list of our Lean Six Sigma and Quality Management certification courses, please click here.

About Dartmouth, Thayer School of Engineering
Founded in 1769, Dartmouth is a member of the Ivy League and consistently ranks among the world's greatest academic institutions. The Dartmouth difference is one community, no departments. Expertise from across disciplines converge to enhance innovation where people share ideas, challenges, and inspiration and push each other to solve pressing global problems.