Category Archives: Business Ideas

Baltimore metal fabricator

Today’s metal fabrication industry has seen major improvements, from using traditional machines to sophisticated equipment that get the job done. Are you in need of great welding and metal fabrication services? Look no further than the Baltimore metal fabricator, Bel Air Stairs & Railings, whose services are not only limited to Bel Air but extend to other parts of Maryland.

Baltimore metal fabricatorAbout the Company

Bel Air Stairs and Railings has been in business for over thirty years, as a welding and metal fabrication company. Their services are not limited to just stairs and railings. They work with residential customers, as well as doing a wide range of commercial and industrial projects. Sometimes the projects are for the industrial and commercial companies themselves and sometimes as subcontractors to larger companies.

The owner worked for many years for a prominent Baltimore fabricator but left when he felt the quality was slipping and decided to open his own shop where he could make sure the work was of the highest quality. Although its operations are based in Bel Air, a lot of the company’s work is done in and around Baltimore. That is partly due to the contacts built up from the time working in Baltimore but also word of mouth because of the good work that is done. They pride themselves in delivering projects on time and on budget. All this has put them on the map as one of the top welding and metal fabricating companies in the state.

What They Do

Whatever design you have in mind, trust this company to come up with the perfect product for you. They are not limited to just a few types of metal but incorporate all types including steel, cast iron, aluminum, wrought iron, and bronze. Moreover, they can also use glass, wood and other additional materials if required.

Apart from their welding, they can perform all other metal fabrication services. These include assembly, welding, drilling, punching, bending, cutting and burning. They also offer laser and plasma cutting services.

They will also provide additional services such a painting, galvanizing, anodizing or powder coating after welding and otherwise processing the item. This offers so much convenience to the client as there is no need to get a different company to handle that.

Their residential services include:

  • Banisters, railings, and balustrades
  • Stairs; both interior and exterior
  • Window guards
  • Metal awnings, carports, and patio covers
  • Balconies, decks and fire escapes
  • Security doors & door guards
  • HVAC cages & HVAC support
  • Flower boxes
  • Gates and fences

Commercial and industrial services include:

  • Press brake
  • Tube& pipe bending
  • Piping, shearing, notching, and bending
  • Machining

However, they also offer other services not included on this list on request. If you needed a more customized design, they will work with you to make this a reality.

Contact Bel Air Stairs and Railings today for a free quote and get the best services, at the best prices!

Metal Fabrication

This involves layout, cutting, bending and assembling involved in metal building. Raw materials such as sheet metal are used to create structures, machines and various parts. Most of the jobs are based on engineering drawings which are awarded to fab shops after bidding to build the project. Value added resellers (VAR), Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), and contractors employ fabrication shops for their projects.

Metal FabricationIf a fab shop is large enough, they can provide all the value-added processes involved as opposed to giving parts of the project to multiple vendors. The first phase of metal fabrication is shop drawings with exact measurements, followed by the fabrication and finally the installation stage. The projects mostly revolve around heavy equipment, loose parts, stairs, hand railings and other structural frames for buildings.

Processes Involved in Metal Fabrication

Cutting

  • It requires shearing, sawing, and chiseling using manual and powered variants.
  • Torching using hand-held torches.
  • Numerical control cutters using water jets, torch, laser or mill bits.

Bending

  • Hammering using manual or powered tools or through press brakes and other tools.
  • Modern metal fabricators employ the use of press brakes to air-bend or coin the metal sheets.
  • CNC controlled back gauges position cut parts using hard stops to align the bend lines in the correct position. Programming the CNC-controlled press brakes have been made easy using the off-line programming software.

Assembling

The pieces are joined through welding, binding with adhesives, threaded fasteners, riveting or bending in the form of a crimped seam. The starting materials required for the fabrication are the sheet metal, structural steel plus flux, fasteners and welding wires that join the cut pieces. Labor requires automation and human personnel. Fabrication is what is used to refer to a product that has undergone this process.

Some metalwork end products may appear similar in function and shape but are not referred to as fabrication. Forging, machining, casting and metal stamping are examples of these.

Machine shops and fab shops have some similarities although fab shops focus on metal preparation and its assembly. Machine shops on the other hand also cut metal but prioritize on the machining of different parts on machine tools. Some firms, however, do both fab shop and machine works.

Why Your Small Business Needs an Accountant

You know one of the reasons why small businesses take so long to grow? It is because the business owner is everything! You are the founder, the janitor, the manager, the errands boy et cetera. While you can’t afford to hire more people at this time, there is an expert you shouldn’t avoid— an accountant.

Balancing Act Hold up, whenever you mention an accountant to a small business owner, his mind will automatically see a tax accountant. Obviously, you need an accountant to help you with tax paperwork, but you there is so much more you need an accountant for. We interviewed Mary Jo Watson of Balancing Act to get more insight into how a small business accountant can help a small business prosper and grow.

Frees your time

You are not a trained accountant and therefore book keeping is a nightmare that takes more of your time and slows productivity. Spending hours trying to work on your ledger, balance sheets, and petty cashbooks can really eat into the time you need for strategy and production.

Here, delegation is key, do what you are good at and leave your finance records for someone who can handle them for you. Having your accountant set up accounting software properly can save a lot of time and money and give you a better idea of how your business if performing and will flag problems more quickly. An accountant will use receipts and input them into accounting software where they will be available for future auditing. Trying to juggle all the aspects of your business commitments has lots of shortcomings too.

Keeping Track of Expenses

Most entrepreneurs are visionary but do not have the ability to organize and trace their personal and business expenses. Shop owners, restaurant owners, service business owners know their business but having an accountant, who has seen the problems and solutions in many businesses can provide advice that can make you a lot more money. Normally, a good accountant will save or make you more money than you spend on the accountant.

Also, with an accountant you will know which business expenses keep you sinking and how to cut the costs— every business wants to reduce expenses and increase profits, most accounting firms offer consultancy services to help you leverage on what the market has to offer so that you don’t just do business—you thrive. An example at Balancing Act, they offer small business consulting which is really helpful in succeeding in your niche and forecasting income streams and cost controls.

Processing Payrolls

If you have ever tried it you will concur with me that it is not easy to prepare payrolls for employees. Think about their allowances, deductions, taxes, insurance et cetera. A lot goes into clearing salaries for employees that it can take you days just working on the payroll

Also, chances are high that you will not do it right and you will have employees queueing outside your office frothing with anger because their expectations isn’t what you had issued.

Having an accountant helps you get this right the first time. In case of complaints, he or she will shoulder all of it as you have a peace of mind focusing on more important aspects of your business.

Every business needs an accountant irrespective of the size. Most small business owners who have overlooked the need for an accountant have lost it big. You don’t have to tread the same path. You shouldn’t shy away from having a personal accountant as there are so many accounting firms who specialize in small businesses hence their rates are reasonable.

Three Lesson Every Young Entrepreneur must learn from Richard Branson

Have you asked yourself, how do I get that big investor into believing in my ideas and investing in my business or how do I secure a celebrity’s support to boost my product’s public image?  In his own words, Eric Sanchez affirmed that securing one’s dream angel investor or business partner has little to do with what they can offer, but more about what the entrepreneur has to offer. Eric Sanchez is an adventurous entrepreneur who with great belief in the value he had to offer secured for himself the full support of the world-renowned Sir Richard Branson and other bigger wig venture capitalists. The inspiring story of Eric Sanchez reveals that a combination of faith, outright self-confidence coupled with innovation sums up the ticket needed by a budding entrepreneur in securing that dream investor.

 

Richard BransonWith an undaunted will and courage, Sanchez bought himself his ‘FREE TICKET’  to the Extreme Tech Challenge at Branson’s Necker Island in the Carribean unofficially invited.This risk-taking adventure by Eric is a product of his personal research on Branson, the virgin group chief also popular for his high-risk taking enterprise both in business and life as well.

Applying the risk theory observed from his study of Branson, the aviation entrepreneur who revels in kite surfing, Sanchez, started his own company offering the services of camera and video editing.

Unlike other entrepreneurs who would rather give a ton of excuses, Sanchez “invited himself to the place where his business would have a chance to succeed”. This he achieved with just a $500 investment in a plane ticket.

Below are three success lessons Sanchez gleaned from his study of Branson. Applying these lessons made him a young millionaire.

 

  1. RISK TAKING

Observing closely the extreme risk-taking enterprise of Branson, Sanchez resolved to live life “on the edge” both as a businessman and as a sportsman. A striking account of Branson’s high risk-taking enterprise is captured in the documentary “Don’t Look Down” which films Branson’s attempt to cross over the Atlantic Ocean.

Sanchez quit his employment in 2013 to launch his Camera and AI editing software company, inspired by his years of professional kit surfing.

Unlike other entrepreneurs who would rather dream but not innovate, Sanchez, took the bold risky steps to make his dream a reality.

 

  1. RESOURCEFULNESS

Sanchez knew he could not get his free ticket without an exchange of value. Being resourceful, he invented a DJ system which he bartered in exchange for his free ticket to the Tech event on Branson’s Necker Island. Being proactive, he entered a deal with the organizer of the event, providing them with a unique DJ entertainment in exchange of a week-long idea pitching before investors like Richard Branson, Bill Tai and a host of other investors. Without official participation in the challenge, He secured his first capital investment from three out of five judges! And Branson’s endorsement which led to Revl cameras media chase.

 

  1. Follow Up

Sanchez would rather prove himself a visionary businessman who finishes what he starts making him worthy of Branson’s longtime recommendation. He learned the importance of follow up from his study of Branson. He discovered that a major aspect of sale beyond listening follow up. He describes the follow-up activity beyond the customer level. An employer sells the vision of his company by hiring employees just as PR activities is selling to a journalist. Going back to a business challenge like Extreme tech challenge is a follow-up activity that sells you more in the mind of a “Branson” as an entrepreneur with a lifetime vision.

Problems to Avoid in a Startup

What Startups should be Aware of

The start-up phase is one of the most exciting and exhausting times you will likely experience in your journey of entrepreneurship.  It takes great courage to venture and build something from scratch; to bring an idea to life. A lot of sacrifices, dedication, and commitment, come into play. Start-ups come with a lot of challenges, so a lot of resilience is required to break through. Some of the common challenges that face startups are as follows;

  • Start up Capital

This is one of the biggest challenges that face start ups. Today many investors are willing to invest in companies and businesses. Unfortunately, most banks, financial institutions, and investors are not too keen on lending money to start-ups. However, even if your startup doesn’t get investors, business owners should treat these meetings as learning opportunities. If this is the case, consider partnering with government funding programs or business programs to get the capitalization required.

  • Improper Planning

It is crucial to have a business plan before you decide to start your enterprise. This is often overlooked, and some prefer to take pants on approach to startups. Having a solid plan in a place gives you a sense of direction, and in case things change course along the way, some modifications may be made. No plan means no vision which in turns means a bleak future for your startup.

  • Executing your Idea

You may have strategies in place to bring your plan to action. What you need to remember, however, is all the factors in play that affect your company are always changing. Business dynamics such as customers, competitors, technology, etc., rarely remain the same, so flexibility and promptness are required to deal with these surprises that spring up along the way.

  • Human Personnel

People are a business’ greatest asset. Some people may decide to take all the weight on their shoulders as opposed to bringing other people on board. It is not a bad idea to get some help because no matter how good you are, it’s impossible to have all the skills required for a company.

Finding employees who fit into your business vision is quite challenging; more so because at the beginning HR policies have not yet been put in place. Different stages of your start up need different skill sets from different people. Building a strong team right from the beginning can make a significant difference in your company.

  • Right attitude towards failure

Building a business is a learning curve; failure is part of that. Every failure is an opportunity to learn and grow from that experience. Valuable lessons are learned which help in the later stages of the business so don’t let those shortcomings way you down. Embrace them and grow from them.

Four Steps From Startup to a growth-Stage Business Organization

Congratulations for successfully starting that new business! Everything is working out well, and you’ve even realized some profit during your first year. Every person should always celebrate after achieving some level success. The same applies to entrepreneurs after taking an idea and turning into a successful and profitable business. Well, it’s time to stop having the same results and start scaling up and growing in a big way. Business growth is not one of those simple stuff that runs smoothly and follows a linear path. It’s a complicated process that requires a proper understanding of all the elements at play. Here are some of the steps businesses must follow to ensure growth.

Focus on what sells best

One of the mistakes you can make is spreading your business too thin at the growth stage. Trying to grow and expand your business into many new markets simultaneously or attempting to do everything for your clients might not work. As a matter of fact, you may end up failing. As a business, your goal should be focusing on your core business areas. What wins the day, in the long run, is targeted growth.

Be strategic when innovating and expanding

Businesses should pivot towards what is selling best. That should be your focus. Don’t keep pursuing what doesn’t sell best. Start by strategizing and innovating into areas that will help in expanding your core business.

Standardize business processes and structures

When in the startup phase, you’ll most likely depend on the expertise and skills of a small core team. However, as you move towards the growth phase, things start changing, and it becomes quite a challenge to maintain the initial level of quality as far as seizing opportunities and impressing clients is concerned. It, therefore, means you need to allow the business processes and products to take center stage to ensure the reproduction of great experiences. You’ll need to utilize technology, employ more efficient hiring methods and develop a business culture that will foster communication and collaboration.

Build your Brand

Many entrepreneurs often forget that client relationship are very key during the startup phase. If you want your clients to have a good perception and think well of your business, you must build a positive brand image. As you get to the growth phase, you must pay attention to your brand image. How do clients perceive your brand? This should be at the center of your business ideals. The only way to ensure a positive brand image for your business is making sure clients get satisfied with your service and have positive experiences. This is where customer service comes into play. Your company should concentrate on excellent customer service and experience, superior product development and client-centric sales plan.