Employees versus Independent Contractors Thursday, May 1 2014 

Employees versus Independent Contractors

When you hire someone, should they be an employee or an independent contractor? Maybe they would be both, but at different times. An employee is one that is paid a salary or hourly wages for working for your business. He/she works an assigned time, at a specific location and you provide the necessary material/supplies/equipment for them to complete their work. Employees are paid an agreed upon amount and set pay day. The business is responsible for paying the employee on time as well as withholding taxes from the employee’s paycheck and submitting all withholding taxes by their designated deadline (federal and state). . Lastly, the business is responsible for paying its share of employee taxes (the business’s portion) of employee with-holdings plus any workmen’s compensation on employees. Yes, it cost more than the hourly wage you pay your employee(s) to have an employee(s). An employee receives a W-2 form at the end of the year, mailed by January 31. The deadline for each business is dependent on your structure aEmployees vs Contractornd/or number of employees, etc. The exact timeline and reporting requirements can be found at www.irs.gov.

 

An independent contractor is an individual or business that provides its own material/supplies/equipment to complete a job for you. In other words, you do not tell them how to accomplish a job/work, you simply contract with them to perform a service. They supply the knowledge and resources to get the task accomplished. Independent contractors are paid an agreed upon amount at an agreed upon pay date. You should have agreements identifying tasks to be delivered with completion dates. An independent contractor receives a 1099 form for work completed in a fiscal year mailed by January 31. No taxes are withheld from their checks. They are responsible for their own taxes.

So, now that you know the difference between employees versus independent contractors, which one is applicable to you and your business?

 

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HOW DO YOU BUILD CAPACITY? Friday, Apr 4 2014 

HOW DO YOU BUILD CAPACITY?

Building capacity requires you to focus on setting goals and strategies to accomplish those goals with deadlines. To build capacity, assess your areas of strengths and areas of weakness as well as that of your business. Some areas will be apparently evident, while others may take time to reveal themselves. If you are unsure of certain areas, then ask someone you trust their opinion.

 

ASSESSMENT

Perform an assessment of your operations. Are they efficient and are processes written and executed by all. Does everyone in your organization know and understand the operations.

FINANCIAL CAPACITY

To address financial capacity, consider decreasing expenses, business and/or personal loans, line of credits, business credit,

PHYSICAL CAPACITY

Add exercise to your regular habit, recruit volunteers, hire part-time employees, recruit help from local colleges/universities. Make sure you carve out time for yocapacitybuildingsmu to not work on business.

TRAINING

To strengthen the weaker areas in the organization, plan on implementing training for you and your staff. Leadership, sales/customer service, stress relief, and other types of training courses will strengthen the knowledge base as well as give your employees the tools to succeed. This builds a stronger workforce as well as growth within the company as employees are able to advance to higher positions based on their training and understanding.

COMMUNICATION

Decide that your organization would like to let more people know that you are in existence. Next, make a list of avenues that could be utilized to get the word out. Avenues such as social media, articles in newspapers, blogs, attending community events, and utilization of local network stations communicate your business message to the surrounding public and achieves community involvement.

MARKETING

First think of who your customer is outside of your storefront doors – what do they like, what are their hobbies, and do those things fit with your business’s goods or services? There are many marketing strategies and plans to choose from that will best benefit your customer and increase foot traffic. Social Media, joint venturing, branding strategies, and sponsoring public events are a few avenues of marketing for small businesses to take in order to gain awareness. Main point: remember who your market is and tailor your strategy to their needs/wants.

 

Author

Tiya “Ty” Scroggins

CEO of Scroggins Consulting, LLC

Are You Ready to Build Capacity? Monday, Mar 3 2014 

Are You Ready to Build Capacity?

Are you ready to build capacity in your business? Perhaps you would like to grow in one or more of the following areas: clients, revenue, employees, product or services, or geographic area. All growth requires some cost factor: time, money, practice, or sometimes pain. In order for you to grow your business’ capacity, you have to assess where you are, visualize where you want to be and develop your action plan to get there.

Capacity_Building

If you were to build capacity that means more is needed. You need more resources, more opportunities, more staff, more avenues, more policies, more agreements, more traveling, more regulations, or simply more tasks for you or someone to complete. All of this more has to be planned, organized and executed. If it is not, then the consequences can be overwhelming to you and the business. Some businesses do not recover from not adequately building capacity or deciding to launch into the deep and not being prepared. For example, let’s say your company is a one-person operation. You decide that you want to grow into a full-service consulting firm. To accomplish this task, you bid on a job and are awarded the contract, but remember the operation is only you. After initiating the contract, you realize that you do not have proper support staff to execute the contract, you do not have the necessary money to meet payroll, and you don’t have proper workmen’s comp insurance that is required on employees. The challenge for you is most of the tasks needed to build capacity take time to put into place. There are numerous tasks that have to be accomplished to build capacity. Just remember, count the cost, research, seek out information and resources, and assess the real needs of the business before you launch.

Author,
Tiya Scroggins, MBA
CEO of Scroggins Consulting, LLC

 

Are You Financially Fit For Business? Monday, Feb 17 2014 

To establish and maintain a business, finances are needed. Needed finances could include cash, loans, lines of credit, equity or access to family or friends who have financial means. All businesses need finances and will always need finances. Finances are needed to file applications, open bank accounts, purchase equipment, lease or purchase of buildings, licenses, payroll, marketing, professional consultation, and additional cost to do business, etc. This process is ongoing for the life of your business.

Do you have money saved, equity in your home, a loan, good personal and/or business credit or a rich relative? To be successful in business, you should address how you will pro

financially_fit

cure your start-up money and generate enough income to meet the ongoing financial needs of the business.

If you assess that you do not have the financial resources needed initially, then simply address this necessary issue and adjust your start-up time by launching your business at a later time.  This will help you with the unnecessary stress of not having enough financial resources and paying the cost of not having enough money. If your business is already in existence, maintain your financial fitness by obtaining a line of credit, business credit, invest/save-generated income, or obtain a business loan if needed.

Author

Tiya “Ty” Scroggins, MBA

CEO of Scroggins Consulting

Are You Mentally and Physically FIT for Business? Monday, Feb 3 2014 

ARE YOU FIT FOR BUSINESS, MENTALLY AND PHYSICALLY?

Having a business is more than a job! Having a business for some is your life’s ambition, for some it’s a way to make a living or supplement your income, for some it’s an outward expression of your skillset. Whatever your motivation, it can be stressful. So, my question to you is can you handle the stress, pressure, work long hours and possibly work several positions in your business all at the same time? Can you juggle several things at one time, are you organized, can you be pulled in several directions at the same time, can you manage a work load that changes constantly, can you balance family life and business life which reflects two or more financial obligations. Some business owners operate on a limited amount of sleep (we work a lot as well as being up at night forecasting and developing businesses conceptually).

Fit for Business

The fact is having a business requires both mental and physical stamina. The mental requirement is the brain-power to spend hundreds of hours developing, organizing, researching, planning, and working on an ongoing basis. Remember, you will be asked questions about your business-some things you have not considered before because this venue is new. This mental requirement never changes, years after starting the business you will be utilizing your mental strength.

The physical requirement of a business could include the following: working long hours per day, working 7 days per week, possibly shorter sleeping hours, meetings, travel, and time to focus on business which is time away from your family.

Starting and operating a business is a passion for some; however, you must be mentally and physically strong. Not only is the strength needed in the beginning, it is needed to maintain the business throughout the years. Consequently, you have to be able to self motivate and balance business and personal life. Do you fit the Business owner profile both mentally and physically? I recommend that you consider this before starting a business. Most of us will reconsider this after we have started and we recognize the mental and physical requirement is great but greater than we expected. The good news is that you can adjust as the years go by.

Author:
Tiya Scroggins
CEO of Scroggins Consulting

Importance of Certifications Monday, Jan 20 2014 

Importance of Certifications

History 

certification

Certification programs were created to ensure non-discrimination in the award and administration of government-funded and private sector contracts and to avail minorities an opportunity to bid and win contracts that sometimes go to larger firms.

Requirements

The requirements to become a certified firm depend on the certification program and certifying agency; they vary from agency to agency. In order to qualify for the certification, make sure you have the met requirements prior to submitting an application. Some certifications require a site visit before being approved.

Documentation

Documentation needed for your certification typically includes the following: last 2-3 years of personal and business tax returns, last 2-3 years financial statements, resume of key personnel, articles of incorporation/organization, and declaration of core competence to name a few.

Cost

All certifications are free with the exception of two. The two certifications that have a cost are the Minority Business Certification (MBE) and the Woman Owned Certified Business (WBE).

Different types of Certifications:

Certifications are federal, state or local. The time it takes to officially obtain your certification can vary from a few days to several months. Certifications typically have an initial application and require annual updates to verify any changes to the company over that year’s time.

How does a Certification help you?

Certification helps your company because several bid opportunities have “set-asides” for ONLY certified firms. Set-asides could be 100% for a Minority Certified Firm or for a percentage of the contract such as 15% or 25%, consequently as a subcontractor your business could benefit with a contract.

Get certified, it could benefit your business.

Author:
Tiya “Ty” Scroggins
Scroggins Consulting, LLC

Dreaming Of A Business: Starting Your Own Business Thursday, Dec 16 2010 

You have always dreamed of owning your own business, nevertheless, you have never taken the intuitive to follow your dreams because you just do not know how. In order to effectively become a business owner, there are some steps that you must follow in order to achieve your goal.

First, take the dream and make it a vision on paper. This is simply determining what you desire to do, but making sure that it is something that you love doing. If you are doing what you love, you will enjoy what you do! This assessment will allow you to be open to being the first one in, and the last one out. All business owners love their business enough to spend as much time, as they need to in the business, but loving every minute.

Research is always a positive. If you love baking cookies, research the different types of cookies. Perfect the cookies that you do good, making them great. Then find information on others who have started cookie companies. Evaluate what makes them a successful business and elaborate on what you feel can make them an even better business. This information is conducive to writing a brilliant business plan.

Now, lets get down to the brass business of starting a business. After choosing what it is you want to do, determine what you will name your business. You name is the first component to doing your legal paper work for your business. Then, it is now time to determine what type of business like whether you want to become a sole proprietorship (having the least taxes but greatest liabilities), a general partnership (consisting of having two or more people partnering with you in business), a limited liability corporation (LLC), which is only available in certain states, or a corporation (having the suffix INC, which insures the best protection).

After securing and establishing the type of business you will have, the next step is registering with the Secretary of State. Go to your local government state web page to pull forms on registering your business. There you can also find other information that can be truly helping to a new and up coming business owner. Then it’s insurance time. Insurance is always your assurance in the case of emergencies. These are the types of insurances that are available and needed when starting a new business: liability insurance, property insurance, business interruption, key-man insurance, automobile insurance, and home office insurance, if you are running your business from your home. The last step is getting an Employer Identification Number (EIN). This number can be obtained by going to the IRS website and down loading form SS-4. You can either call this information in at 1-800-829-4933, or by faxing it in to the IRS. After you have finished all of these steps, you now are the owner of a legitimate business. Your next step is developing a marketing plan and next week we will assist you with this. Until then, have a wonderful time dreaming and bringing your dream to life!

Scroggins Consulting, LLC

Tiya Scroggins is the founder of Scroggins Consulting, LLC . To find out more about Scroggins Consulting go to http://www.scrogginsconsulting.com or email her at ty@scrogginsconsulting.com. The article is forwarded by Author Danyelle Scroggins.

Hello world! Thursday, Dec 16 2010 

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