Intelligent Inventory Management,
POS & CRM Systems
There has been a lot of exciting news in the past few months at Aralco.
Over the past 20 years, we have installed systems across Canada and USA, however, the system installations always involved a lot of manual tasks such as personal demonstrations, Installations that involved shipping out disks and CDs followed by dialing into clients’ machines and doing a lot of the manual work over the phone.
Long distance training also was challenge unless we arranged traveling to the client site which became expensive.
In the past 18 months, we have implemented a fully web-based demonstration system whereby companies around the world have had access to see our product strengths and main features.
We have extended the web-based educational video applications to the training of the Aralco Back Office and POS Systems where the Aralco clients can have unlimited access for all their company staff at their convenience.
The demonstration and training videos are extremely useful tools when dealing with clients who are not within immediate reach or in different time zones.
Our new multi-language and user-definable system designs will also be instrumental in enabling Aralco to reach markets beyond North America.
Here are some of the territories we have successfully “remotely” installed the new Aralco systems into and had the clients complete their training using our web-based training videos:
The amazing part about the above installations is that we have never met these clients in person and have mostly used the electronic methods to communicate with them.
We are very excited about the potentials we have ahead of us.
Due to an overwhelming interest from professionals around the globe wishing to participate in a partnership program with Aralco and promote our products in their regions, we are starting a new division to handle their individual needs and to accommodate their geographic and regional requirements.
We are currently negotiating with a number of companies, namely in Europe, USA and Eastern Canada.
New Marketing team
Regardless of how powerful the Aralco products are, the key is to making our potential markets aware of the wonderful contributions Aralco can make to their operations.
In the past year, we have hired some top professionals with extensive experience in marketing of business software and IT arena and in a very short time they have produced amazing results.
Our constantly expanding client base and new developments that take the Aralco products into new territories have resulted in a bigger demand for development expertise.
Over the last six months, we have been actively searching the market for to recruit talented programmers and have been extremely successful in training a great new team.
New Support Team
We have always been committed to providing an excellent after sales support and related services. As our client base grows, we continually assess the support call throughput and make sure all the calls are handled in a timely manner.
In the past year, we have searched for, found and trained a number of talented individuals who in time will prove to be the key to our success in “winning our customers hearts”
Although the current offices have served Aralco very well over the past number of years, with the recent expansions we are planning on moving to new premises with approximately four times the capacity of the current location. The new building will house our expanding research and development as well as the technical support and marketing team. We will also offer training/ group training facilities at the new location.
212-828 Harbourside Drive, North Vancouver, V7P 3R9
Source: Vernon Morning Star, Lachlan Labere, August 11, 2006
Plans for a Wal-Mart in Salmon Arm appear to be on hold. For over a year the retail giant has been involved in negotiations with the Adams Lake Indian Band for the
Source: CanWest News Service, Meagan Fitzpatrick, August 5, 2006.
Analysts said Friday's figures confirmed the likelihood that the Bank of Canada will hold steady on interest rates in September at its next setting. "The widespread view was that the Bank of Canada was not going to raise rates in September and probably not in October either. This will simply cement that view," said Porter.
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Resort officials announced yesterday that they anticipate new commitments of over C$100 million by 2010 which will facilitate the continued growth and evolution of the ski resort's
We have pursued selective real estate projects unique to the market and have focused on establishing strong business fundamentals which has put us in a strong position moving forward,” he said.
Some of the project highlights include:
Source: Kelowna Capital News, Donna Gallagher, August 23, 2006
An asset sale may result in more taxes and less net proceeds going to the vendor, often making it a less attractive option from the vendor's perspective. Whether you acquire the assets personally or incorporate your own company to purchase them, the cost base of each asset purchased will be the amount you actually paid for that asset. This cost will be the tax base used to depreciate the asset and/or to calculate future gains or losses on their disposition. In most cases, this will provide you with the most favourable future tax consequences. So how is a company ever purchased or sold, considering these competing interests?
Source: CanWest News Service, Wendy McLellan, August 20, 2006.
Is summer really disappearing so soon? Well, the rays are still with us, but hoping to lure customers back earlier to the second-most lucrative shopping season of the year, some retailers have moved up their back-to-school advertising to early August. A few even tested the waters in July, scant weeks after the little darlings had raced away from school to summer freedom. And many
Port Coquitlam mom Debbie Callender used to leave back-to-school shopping until the last week of August, but has followed the trend and is shopping early. "I bought most of the school supplies last weekend because it can be so chaotic later and the selection is diminished," said Callender, who works at Vancity Saving Credit Union and has four children ages 11 to 16. "I wanted to beat the rush."
Small business battles for workers: Bonuses get people aboard, but keeping them's the hard part.
Source: Derek Sankey, CanWest News Service, October 2006
Many of the casualties in the intensifying war for talent are small business owners who lack the resources to compete with large corporations, causing many entrepreneurs to fight the problem on several new fronts, says a leading author on human resource issues.
"As a small business owner, you really have to position your company, put its strengths forward, show how solid and grounded you are and let people know there is security," says Michael Schell, president of Vancouver-based The Approved Group.
Schell was in Calgary recently to deliver seminars on HR topics, including how smaller companies can overcome the inherent disadvantages they face in such a tight labour market as Calgary.
The traditional standard -- a newspaper advertisement -- is still one of the most favoured and effective ways of attracting talent, but more and more people are incorporating other methods into their searches because of the lack of talent, says Schell.
Signing bonuses, for example, have become much more popular recently. Smaller firms now routinely offer bonuses of, say, $500 payable to employees who successfully remain on for three or six months.
Byrne Luft, vice-president of operations in Alberta for Manpower, says the trend toward signing bonuses helps attract more people, but the issue of retention is still a major problem.
"Bonuses work from an attraction perspective, but I think the issue is sustainability of the workforce," says Luft. "The challenge is what (owners) are prepared to offer a candidate and how you match up against these other companies who have deeper pockets."
Developing your brand image as an employer is difficult for entrepreneurs with little or no resources for advertising and promotion. Schell says small businesses need to focus on branding to potential hires from the first moment of contact.
Both parties involved are weighing the pros and cons, so it's not just a one-sided decision. "Let the candidate know about the important elements of your culture, like recognizing people for their efforts," says Schell.
There is good news for smaller firms, though. A recent poll by Workopolis.com shows that in the last five years, people's top priority has shifted from career to work-life balance.
"Money is not the N0. 1 attracting force for most applicants," Schell says, adding job seekers should take note there is often more opportunity in smaller companies for rapid advancement.
"If a small company is positioned for growth and is doing well, you can grow right along with it," he says.
Small businesses are also shifting their sights to career fairs.
"The applicants you meet at career fairs . . . are eager people that take the time to show up," says Schell. "A big part of life is just showing up."
Some companies are also recruiting outside of their local markets, which can be as simple as placing a job ad in Maritime or other daily newspapers across the country.
The flexibility that small companies can offer over larger corporations is also a benefit that must be touted by employers during interviews, says Luft.
"If you have a small business, you're not this big elephant, (so) you can move very quickly and your policies can be extremely flexible," he says. There are lots of semi-retired workers and stay-at-home parents who prefer the flexibility offered by small employers.
Luft realized the potential of this small-business market, so he set up a dedicated service called DirectHire Plus, which allows small firms to place jobs on Manpower's existing online network to tap into that pool of talent.
"We understand that (small) companies don't have the budget to use executive search firms to recruit people . . . so they're now able to capitalize on the tools that Manpower has in its everyday business" at a reduced cost, says Luft.
There are also recruiters dedicated to serving specific niche markets, such as J. Ross Recruiters, which serves the retail and hospitality industry.
Schell says small businesses are also realizing that retention initiatives, such as recognition and rewards programs, play an increasingly bigger role in reducing turnover.
At the same time, he says owners need to develop better interviewing techniques. "It's one of those things that's easy to do, but if you've got enough fires to put out, you don't have time to be proactive," says Schell.
Using all of these strategies will help attract and retain better people, although he admits it takes time and effort.
"Finding the people is half the battle," says Schell. "Finding the right people and keeping them is the biggest part of that battle."
Source: William Boei, Vancouver Sun, Thursday, October 12, 2006
The B.C. government welcomed Prime Minister Stephen Harper's commitment Wednesday of $321 million for Asia-Pacific Gateway projects, but Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon said it's just a down payment and the province will be back for more.
Harper earmarked the $321 million -- the first stage of a $591-million federal commitment -- for Asia-Pacific Gateway projects. Most of it will be spent on highway and railway projects in Greater Vancouver.
Harper, in a dockside announcement staged against the backdrop of Vancouver's busy container port, committed the federal government to helping British Columbia become the crossroads for Asian trade with North America.
But he offered much less money than the B.C. government had hoped for.
B.C. had asked for $365 million for one of its priority projects, the $800-million South Fraser Perimeter Road. Harper committed only $100 million for the new four-lane highway, which will be a major new truck route along the south shore of the Fraser River.
"We consider it a down payment on the South Fraser Perimeter Road," Falcon said. "We are looking for another $265 million.
"But having said that, we view it very positively, because it allows us to go forward."
Falcon said the Gateway initiative should be seen as the western equivalent of the St. Lawrence Seaway, a multi-billion-dollar project that galvanized the central Canadian economy.
"We view the Asia-Pacific Gateway as the same kind of opportunity that requires the same kind of financial commitment from all levels of government," Falcon said.
Harper kept a cap of $591 million on federal Gateway spending, the same figure he campaigned on last year and the same as the federal Liberals had promised. Money not committed Wednesday will be held in an infrastructure fund to be spent in future years.
Harper said Canada now handles only nine per cent of North America's west coast container traffic.
"That is just not good enough," he said, setting a target for Canada to grab 14 per cent of the fast-growing Pacific container business by 2020.
That will mean more than tripling container-handling capacity in B.C. ports, from two million containers a year now to seven million in 14 years.
"Canada should be the crossroads between the massive engine of the United States and the burgeoning economies of Asia," Harper said, listing China, Japan, South Korea, India and Indonesia as countries with which Canada should expand trade.
Harper touted the initiative as benefiting all four western provinces. However, the only financial commitment outside B.C. was $37 million to help twin the Trans-Canada Highway in Banff National Park, in Alberta.
Premier Gordon Campbell called the announcement "the launching pad of Canada's Pacific century."
"As the world shifts to the Pacific, Canada is in a great position to take advantage of this crossroads," Campbell said.
North Vancouver MP Don Bell, the Liberal critic for Gateway, also said B.C. got much less money than it had asked for.
Bell said the Conservatives had "delayed and diluted" the Liberals' plans. The Tories will spend the $591 million on Gateway over eight years, he said, while the Liberals would have spread the same sum over only five years.
"They seem to be simply taking what we did, dusting it off and adding no new money," he said.
But International Trade Minister David Emerson, asked what was different about the Conservatives' approach, said the Liberals never got past the talking stage.
"The difference is we're actually now beginning to act," he said.
Bell said it was noteworthy that Harper specifically endorsed expanding trade with China. Relations between Canada and China have been cool since Harper took over; the Conservative election platform called for more trade with democratic Asian countries and pointedly did not name China.