Dear PuppetFest MidWest Attendees and other interested parties,

        The Board of the Rumpelstiltskin Society and Festival Directors Debbie and Peter Allen would like to Thank You for your support of PuppetFest MidWest over the last 10 years.

                 
        2012 was definitely the last year that Peter and Debbie will organize PuppetFest MidWest at North Central Missouri College in Trenton, Missouri. The terrific Trenton trifecta (a college with affordable dorms and classrooms, at least two performance spaces and a late night gathering spot all within walking distance) that started this whole process is no more.


        With the departure of Residence Life/Conference Coordinator Paula Czirr from the college 6 years ago, we lost the immediate contact, caring and concern that we needed to run this festival.  Peter and Debbie are frustrated and exhausted from dealing with a college that doesn’t want to be bothered with PuppetFest MidWest. The closing of the Main Street Theatre several years ago left us lacking a late night performance space. With the closing of the downtown Wild Onion Cafe we lost that nearby late night place for fun. The only thing left is the Grundy County Jewett Norris LIbrary Hoover Theater which is still wonderful (as is the library staff), but not enough to make up for the loss of all the rest.


        We will keep you posted as we search for a new venue for 2014 and beyond.

Thank you,
Peter and Debbie Allen, Directors
PuppetFest MidWest

Blog

Why Startups Need CRM Software

All startups begin with an idea. With some luck and a lot of skill, they can benefit a lot of people; not just the people running the business but also all the people that it serves. Every startup wants to grow into a large business, but growth comes with a lot of problems. To expand your business successfully, you would need to think about a lot of factors, such as your approach to sales management, details about your product, or even your employees. This is where CRM software comes in.

How CRM Can Aid Your Growth

Growth always means change, and change cannot happen without a catalyst setting things into motion. However, you cannot start things and make sure that they end well if you do not have the right information and the right way of looking at this information. CRM can show you your data, including sales reports and customer information, in a way that is easy to understand. Armed with all this information, you can now confidently make the most effective actions to move your business forward; at its core, this is how CRM can aid the growth of your company. However, CRM can facilitate your growth in many other ways, like the following:

1. Better Decision Making

CRM lifts the veil from the details connecting you and your customers. With CRM software, you can handle prospects using sales automation systems in Singapore and keep track of their spending habits, which leads to better decision making on what marketing method to use, what products to release and what steps to take next. CRM gives you access to crucial, detailed and comprehensive data, like sales reports and inventory, all of which can aid your business’ growth. Additionally, not having to compile all this data yourself frees you up from the minute details of your business, giving you more time to focus on big-picture improvements.

2. Real-Time Data

Data is the driving force behind effective sales management. Unsurprisingly, real-time data can do wonders for increasing your sales; some statistics show that real-time data produces up to 20% more sales opportunities. Especially for B2B businesses, real-time data can aid your client in knowing how your product can meet their needs. Even B2C businesses can use real-time data to show their customers how their products are better than others in the market, aided by real-time numbers and statistics.

You can even access your data much faster with a cloud CRM. As a CRM with cloud capabilities, cloud CRM lets you access your data from wherever you are, whether in Singapore or abroad. This is especially important for emergency issues, as going to the office to access your data can cost valuable time and money.

3. Personalized Content

One of the best marketing strategies that have appeared in modern-day marketing is personalized content, as it saves time for both businesses and consumers. This means that the content that you’re showing your consumers is relevant to them, raising the probability of engagement and future sales. CRM software can track the spending habits of a consumer, and target your market while showing them content that is filtered to their needs.

Why You Should Use CRM Now

CRM software can be daunting towards startups, due to the high cost that it requires, in terms of money and effort. However, using a CRM early on in the game can save you a lot of time and effort, and the benefits far outweigh the cost.

1. Accuracy

Many startups in Singapore make do with pen and paper CRM systems, or by creating their own spreadsheets. While this may work for some startups, manually tracking data can only do so much. Despite this, some startups still stick to a traditional CRM system because investing in software doesn’t seem like a sound investment to them. However, with all the time and effort it takes to keep track of and maintain these types of systems, it’s not hard to understand why so many businesses are making the switch. With CRM software, you can do away with inaccurate and erroneous data, long hours of poring over so much information, and a lot of frustration over finding the information you need. Rather, you can easily see your information at a glance from wherever and however you want.

2. Implementation

The earlier your team understands and gets comfortable with using your CRM system, the better. This means that they are given the opportunity to learn about the software earlier, which means that they have more experience in using the software. Familiarity leads to confidence, which can mean faster results and more accurate data. It can also foster a culture in your company, wherein your CRM is regarded as an important and integral tool so that all individuals feel encouraged to use it.

3. High Cost of Migration

The high cost of powerful CRM software can be daunting for startups. However, starting off with a cheaper and more basic CRM software and eventually switching to something more complex and powerful can be even more expensive. While the thought of starting with something basic can make you feel like you’re saving up on money, you’ll also need to factor in your expenses not just in money but also in terms of mental energy, as well as time.

For one thing, you will have to migrate all your data to your entirely new system, all while making sure that your data is accurate and without redundancy. You will also have to retrain all your employees with the new system, a task that is harder than the first time, as they will have to unlearn habits formed with the previous system. Above all, chances are a switch in systems will mean interference with your business. There are a lot of companies that temporarily pause operations to transfer all data to their new system, and you wouldn’t want to miss out on an entire day’s worth of sales due to a system transfer.

Why Mental and Emotional Health is Important in Any Relationship

As a society and as individuals, relationships are perhaps among the most important aspects of our lives.

There are many visible effects that establishing and maintaining interpersonal relationships can have on a person’s overall well-being, such as being more physically healthy, living longer, and having an improved outlook on life. This is even more crucial when it comes to maintaining your relationship with your significant other.

However, there are many factors that could add to strains in relationships, whether it’s between family and friends, and especially your partner, and many people often tend to forget about maintaining mental and emotional well-being until it’s too late.

In the case of relationships, partners can often tend to forget that their significant other may or may not always be at their best in terms of mental and emotional health. This could result in many things that could damage the relationship, and it’s still uncommon for both parties to seek relationship counselling Singapore.

The Impact of Emotional Health
Emotional health is a factor that most of us fail to pay attention to because it doesn’t have more visible effects in the same way as physical health. However, it can still impact you in significant ways. It can impact you both personally and with your relationships with other people, especially friends and family.

When a person bottles up all of his/her emotions until a certain phenomenon angers them, this could release hidden or repressed emotions as a response to the other partner. This can often happen during a heated argument, but there are other factors that could play into this.

Emotional health is different from mental health in that while the latter involves cognitive thinking and attention, the former is about expressing emotions in a way that’s appropriate for one’s age.

On Mental Health and Relationships
Mental health is trickier to define, as it encompasses emotional, psychological, and even social well-being. However, when it comes to relationships, mental health and emotional well-being takes on an even greater importance.

Married couples who are afraid of showing each other their emotional vulnerability will often turn to frequent fighting. This fear of showing emotional vulnerability could stem from a lot of factors, all of which only end up in the relationship deteriorating and the marriage potentially ending in separation and/or divorce.

Maintaining Mental Health and Relationships
Mental health struggles, especially when in a relationship, should be best addressed with a good behaviorist in Singapore with open, honest communication. While this can be intense or difficult at first, this can often be the best way to solve problems in the relationship and come to a compromise without having to come to a psychologist in Singapore.

Additionally, there are also some steps in your daily life you can take to make conversations conducive to openness and positive results (they also make for good life advice). These steps can include the following:

• Prioritize healing. If internal issues are preventing you from dealing with a problem rationally, “vent” to someone you can trust. It can be a close friend, a trusted family member, or even a life coach.

• Minimize stress. Even the little things can tick us off – especially when we have too much on our plate to deal with.

• Keep track of your mood throughout the day. Negative thoughts beget themselves, and they go on into a downward spiral that will impact your disposition. To avoid this, look for two positive thoughts to counter every negative thought that comes to mind.

• Find the source of your anger and confront it. Do not go headfirst and hot-headed into what makes you angry. Instead, take a few deep breaths to cool down. If you can’t change what is happening, then change your outlook towards it.

With that said, seeing a psychologist in Singapore can sometimes be the only option for some cases where the relationship has significantly deteriorated. For instance, married couples who can only emotionally connect to each other through fighting need to consult a psychologist in Singapore.

How Psychologists Can Help
There are many benefits that can be gained by seeking relationship counselling Singapore. Perhaps the biggest benefit that relationship counselling can give is that a psychologist is able to help you create a safe environment where you and your partner can bring up, discuss, and grievances without the fear of judgement or reprisal.

As long as both parties are willing to participate and engage with an open mind at the relationship counselling center in Singapore there will always be results. Once the couple puts in the effort in the therapy sessions all the way through, they can even emerge from the office of the psychologist with a renewed vigor in their relationship.

There are other ways that seeing a recommended psychologist can help, as well, such as the following:
• Re-kindling romantic attraction and intimacy that may have been lost due to time or due to a busy work schedule;
• Allowing both partners to make each other a priority in their daily lives;
• Re-establish emotional connection without the need to turn to fighting or aggressive behavior;
• And in some cases, even helping to diagnose potential mental disorders that are often unrecognized by either or both partners

Consulting a recommended psychologist should not be seen as a last-resort option. Booking an appointment for relationship counselling Singapore should be something done on a regular basis (e.g. at least once a year) in order to assess the quality of the relationship and to make sure that it stays for a long time

Common Pests Found in Commercial and Industrial Buildings

Pest control management in large and complex sites such as commercial and industrial buildings can be a challenge because of the variety of pests that need to be removed. Unlike homes and apartments where the most complex pest control services involve termite removal, business premises have several different challenges.

Why are pests common?
Unlike houses, buildings have multiple entry points for a variety of pests, and this can be further affected by the number of people in the premises, the possible sources of food for the pests, existing structural problems in the building that have not been addressed, and the delivery and storage of merchandise within the premises. Poor sanitation and hygiene in general can also be a huge factor, especially if the company does not have a proper sanitation and pest control management in place. Failure to observe regular facilities servicing for plumbing, heating and cooling systems, and building maintenance can also exacerbate the pest problem.

What can pest control do?
Pest control management in Singapore will not only help you identify the pests that you are probably not aware are found within the building premises, but they can also offer solutions to address and prevent further pest infestation. Pest control services includes prevention of the contamination of food and water sources, improve sanitation and hygiene levels, identify damages to the structure or machines or furniture in the building, create a pest-proof building to lower risks of illnesses, and to undertake inspection of the premises on a regular basis.

How to keep the area pest-free?
Facilities such as hospitals, schools, hotels, resorts, government offices, food service industries, commercial sites, and industrial buildings are prone to pest infestation because of the number of people within the area. To keep these sites pest-free, regular pest control services is a must because sanitation and hygiene also affects the image of the business or office and the health of the employees or tenants. Pest control management will be able to identify the pests, control or eliminate these pests, and establish ways to keep their number under control.

Let’s look at some of the common pests found in commercial and industrial buildings that you should be aware of.

Cockroaches
Cockroaches are the hardiest of the bunch, that is why it is very difficult to get rid of cockroaches in commercial and industrial facilities because of the number of breeding grounds, hiding places, and sources of food. They are highly adaptive that is why they can survive harsh conditions and develop immunity to insecticides such as sprays. They are attracted to moist and dark areas such as leaky pipes, sinks, storage areas, and basements.

There are several types of cockroaches found in most buildings, but you should not just be worried about the pests themselves, but the bacteria and parasites they carry. These can cause allergies and infections among the people who come into contact with food and items that have been contaminated by cockroaches.

Termites
Termites are the mot destructive of the pests, that is why it’s more difficult to get rid of pests and termites in Singapore than to prevent them from infesting the building. Termite removal is a long and complicated process, often with different results, because an assessment of the damage must be taken into consideration.

To remove termites, several factors are considered, such as total area, amount of infestation, the age of the infestation, the layout of the building foundation, location of the buildings, climate, type of termite/s, and the methods applied or used in previous treatments or pest control services. Accurate measurements are important in determining the chemicals that will be used, the renovations required, and the labor cost.

Rodents
Rats and mice can do a great deal of damage in the building especially if the pest infestation is significant. Not only can they cause infections among the people affected by the infestation, but they also carry parasites and bacteria that can be life-threatening. Rats and mice can also damage equipment, create holes in the walls and ceilings, chew through electrical wiring, and damage the furniture. They also leave droppings and urine which can leave a distinct smell in the area.

Pest control management involves identification of the specific species of rodents that infest the building to determine which methods should be used. Sources of food, hiding and breeding places, and repair of damages to the structure are also essential if you want to exterminate rodents. After they terminate pest, proper sanitation and scheduled inspections are also required to avoid another infestation.

Ants
Ants are not as destructive as the other pests listed here, but they can be a nuisance especially in food and beverage services. They can thrive even in buildings that are well-maintained, that is why pest control management must be able to identify the species of the ants, the possible sources of food, and to establish a hygienic practice to avoid ant infestation.

They can’t make the people in the area sick, but they can damage the reputation of the business because they are associated with unsanitary practices, so call the nearest pest control management company in Singapore for an inspection.

House Flies
House flies are difficult to control and can cause illnesses of the infestation is significant. If you run a food and beverage business in Singapore, you should talk to a pest control services representative to avoid these diseases-causing pests from ruining your reputation.

There are several options to terminate pest besides the use of chemicals, including the use of LED fly killers as a long-term solution.

Mosquito
Mosquitoes are the deadliest insects on the planet not only because they can cause life-threatening illnesses, but they also carry parasites that can affect the individuals they come into contact with. Mosquitoes are common in resorts, hotels, and restaurants especially buildings with open-air areas.

Mosquito removal is also complicated because several factors must be considered, but pest control management can offer several solutions besides the use of sprays if you are hesitant about the health effects. Pest control services will also help you identify and address possible areas that serve as breeding grounds for these pests.

Common Aircon Emergencies that Need A Pro

Air conditioners need regular maintenance, event he modern models that are energy-saving and more compact than the larger, noisier, old models. Air conditioners are prone to a lot of issues as they age, that is why a scheduled aircon maintenance and inspection by a reputable aircon servicing company in Singapore are necessary. Occasionally, air conditioners also run into issues even when properly maintained.

Watch out for the following issues and call aircon repair services immediately.

• Air Conditioner Leakages. Leakages can be caused by several issues, but the most common culprit is a dirty unit or air filter. Leakages are easy to detect in most models of air conditioners and the unit itself will also show clear signs of malfunction if there are internal problems that you have not detected yet. The most obvious signs would be dripping fluids from the air conditioner, change in the quality and temperature of air, and foul odor coming from the unit. Leakages can attract mold growth, block the drainage, and damage the condenser so call the aircon maintenance crew as soon as possible if the unit has not been inspected for more than six months.

• Unit Will Not Turn On. When the air conditioner fails to turn on even after you checked if it’s connected to a power outlet, it could indicate several issues. Check the thermostat for issues or inspect the transformer first, then look for signs of burnt wires. You can usually tell if there are burnt parts from the odor coming from the unit. Call the nearest aircon servicing company in Singapore to deal with the problem. It is not recommended that you open or dismantle the unit yourself to avoid further damage. Unplug the unit and wait for the licensed aircon technician to inspect it.

• Thermostat Issues. The thermostat needs regular fine-tuning because it is prone to a lot of problems. After all, it is the tool that regulates the temperature of the room and the time the unit produces cool air. Fluctuations in the temperature may be due to a malfunctioning thermostat that needs to be replaced, reprogrammed or calibrated.

• Unit Does Not Work. If the air conditioner does turn on but does not work properly, the refrigerant or the grill might have problems. A dirty aircon can also have several issues especially if the debris has built up significantly to clog the grill. Call the aircon repair services in Singapore to inspect the refrigerant level or to clean the unit if the grill is clogged.

• Noisy Air Conditioner. Most modern air conditioner produce less noise than the older units, that is why if it is producing unusual noises, you should call an aircon servicing company in Singapore to inspect the unit. The problem may be caused by the fan belt, rust formation in some parts, or a loose part in the unit. Some of these defective parts might need replacement.

• Unit Produces Foul Odor. The problem can simply be from a dirty filter, but it’s important to determine where the odor specifically comes from. Is it an electrical odor or a damp and musty odor? If you smell burnt electrical parts, then there could be mechanical failure in the unit or overheating. The wires in the aircon are probably worn down or melted and must be replaced. In other instances, the ductwork and heat exchangers might be clogged with dirt. If it is a musty odor, like damp socks, then there could be leaks in the system. Regular air conditioner maintenance in Singapore will reduce incidents such as these in the future.

• Uneven Heating. If you find that the other areas of the room do not receive as much cool air as the others, there could be a problem in the aircon’s dampers. To produce cool air, the air from the room must travel through the ducts. But if the dampers have problems, the flow of the air might be obstructed, creating an imbalance in the air flow. Regular aircon maintenance will prevent this problem in the future.

• Unit Blows Warm Air. If the air conditioner is blowing warm air instead of cool, then the condenser probably has some issues. Turn off the unit and visually inspect the condenser coil. This component is supposed to remove the heat from the air and releases it outside of the room. Most condensers in commercial and industrial buildings are found outside, which means they are exposed to the elements. In some cases, the condenser coils can also be frozen due to obstructions in the air filter and ductwork. Call the aircon servicing company in Singapore to inspect and clean the unit.

• Reduced Efficiency. If there are changes in the airflow, you need to check if the filters are dirty before calling the aircon repair crew. If cleaning the filters do not work, however, the problem could be caused by defective blower motor, dirty coils, debris in the ductwork, or a loose fan belt. Call the aircon servicing company to inspect the cooling unit and determine if the ductwork is clear and properly installed.

• Expensive Electrical Bills. Changes in the electrical bills could indicate a hidden problem, although this could also be attributed to other systems that use energy. Call a licensed electrician to inspect your building’s electrical works to eliminate other possible problems. If the problem seems to point to a faulty air conditioning system, call a licensed aircon technician to look for defects in the compressor valves and ductwork or determine if the refrigerant is low.

• Units Cause Sickness. If your employees are having problems in breathing or are reporting incidents of flu, cold, irritation, dry skin, and allergies, then your air conditioner might be the culprit. Have your units inspected regularly for debris buildup, leaks, and clogs.

What Can You Expect from a Biometric Access Control System

Although the biometric access control system has been used in various commercial and industrial offices, government agencies, and educational institutions is Singapore, it is still considered a new technology to a lot of people. If you’re considering installing a biometric door access system in your office, take note of the following when looking for a security systems provider.

1. Methods of Identification

The type of reader you will use for your biometric door access will depend on the kind of reader you want. This can be determined by the level of security you want to set up in specific areas of the office. For example, you can still use other access control systems such as the card access door and pin access door system for other areas in the office, while the biometric door access is only utilized in heavy-traffic areas for monitoring of the people coming in or going out of the area.

So far, there are a few popular types of secure office door entry lock in Singapore to choose from, such as the biometric thumbprint or fingerprint, voice identification, and facial biometric or identification. Talk to you door access control provider about which types will best meet your needs and what other systems you wish to integrate with the biometric door access system.

2. Durability of the Hardware

Make sure that you set up a scheduled maintenance of your door access systems to ensure that they are running smoothly. There should be warranty terms for the hardware and replacement of parts from your door access system provider in Singapore, because it will be difficult to look for readers and models in case they fail.

However, most of the items used in the biometric door access system were designed to withstand abuse because they are dustproof, waterproof, and scratchproof. After all, the biometric door access will be part of your facility’s security system that will be integrated with the intercom system, other security systems, and human resource systems.

3. Complete Required Software and Hardware

Even if you opt for a customized package for the biometric door access system setup, your provider in Singapore should be able to supply all the needed hardware and software. These should include intercom, wireless technology, multimedia, fingerprint or voice identification, applications to make them function and even cctv ip camera from Singapore to ensure optimum office security 24/7. Other features are also available depending on the number of doors and locks your facility needs. Talk to your door access provider in Singapore about the differences between standalone and computer-based access control and the wireless and hard-wired access control systems.

You can use a combination of these to enhance your security depending on the number of biometric door access locations and the size of the facility. A standalone access control system has locks on each door, while the networked type has a centralized control. The former is ideal for few restricted areas, while the latter is perfect for large buildings. The hard-wired access control is the most secure type, but it can be difficult to install. Wireless access control systems on the other hand can be integrated easily into existing systems, although they require very complicated network connections.

Pros and Cons of Hiring a Live Band or a DJ

Can’t decide between hiring a wedding live band in Singapore or an experienced DJ for the wedding ceremony? Let’s look at the pros and cons of both options.

Hiring a Wedding Live Band

• Hiring a wedding live band in Singapore is cheaper than hiring a professional DJ. Musicians who specialize in playing at special events charge a flat fee, which will allow you to save more money than if you provide for the entertainment yourself by hiring different performers.

• A wedding live band is experienced with different genres. Most wedding live band are also variety bands that can play a wide range of musical styles. If you have a long guest list, it will be difficult to select songs that most people will enjoy or recognize, but professional musicians can help you come up with a wedding playlist. If you are not sure about their skill, you should ask for a demonstration (recorded or live) of their most popular wedding live music.

• Hiring a wedding live band directly might be difficult. If you don’t want to go through an agent to look for a wedding live band in Singapore, you might have a difficult time sorting through all the talent. Consult your wedding coordinator or ask for recommendations for a wedding live band in Singapore from an agency to make sure you’re hiring professional musicians with experience at weddings.

• Hiring a live band through an agency will open more options. Some entertainment agencies that recommend wedding live band also include entertainers for special occasions (magicians, dancers, singers, circus acts, etc.) and even have specialized function bands if you’re picky about the genre or style (jazz bands, choir, pianists, guitarists, etc.)

• Booking with a live band agency ensures quality and professionalism. Entertainment agencies specialize in important functions and events, that is why you don’t have to worry about the quality of performance and how you’re going to deal with the musicians. However, hiring a wedding live band through an agency in Singapore will cost more than hiring a band directly.

• The band might take attention away from you and your partner. A good wedding live music can be too impressive for some guests that they will tend to forget what the occasion is for. If you’re hiring a popular band, make sure that the important events in your celebration will be the highlights.

• Bands need breaks in between performances. Wedding live music from http://www.whiteribbon.sg/ in Singapore needs to stop after at least an hour of continuous performance before they can resume, so make sure you arrange for an entertainment team to provide background music. But if you want music throughout the celebration, it would be better to hire a wedding DJ.

• The music volume will need attention. Some live bands have no control over the volume of their music, so you would have to arrange with the wedding venue coordinator about the sound system. Pay attention to this if you still want to be able to have conversations with guests.

• Bands are great for a show-stopping wedding celebration. If you want your guests to have an unforgettable time, hiring a wedding live band might work. After all, who doesn’t like going to concerts? It’s much better than playing pre-recorded songs, because the guests can sing-along or dance to the music while interacting with the band members and other guests. Band members also have great stage presence and can easily command the attention of bored guests.

Hiring a Wedding DJ

• Hiring a DJ ensures you get professional entertainment for guests. Do not burden yourself or a family member to make sure that you have music in your venue. Although some wedding organizers in Singapore can look for wedding musicians for your reception, some couples prefer a wedding DJ for a wedding party if they like dancing and upbeat music.

• Hiring a DJ includes visual entertainment. Experienced DJs who play wedding live music know that to get the guests in the mood for partying, they need to incorporate visual entertainment such as lights. Leave it to the professional when it comes to preparing the venue for a wedding party. However, you need to ensure that the venue will be provided with quality sound system approved by the DJ.

• DJs do not need long breaks. A wedding live band in Singapore will require breaks after 60 minutes pf playing, but a DJ can provide nonstop entertainment, because they will need to step away for only a few minutes. This will ensure that music is nonstop during your wedding.

• The DJ’s style might not be to your liking. Although most DJs have access to a variety of music, their personal choices might not be to your liking if you leave them to decide the creation of the playlist. Discuss this with the DJ days ahead of the event to avoid problems. After all, it will be easier to deal with one person than with a wedding live band, and the services are also cheaper.

• A great DJ needs to have good personality. Some DJs might choose to interact with your guests, which is a good thing, because it will be easier to read the mood of the people in the venue. But you cannot determine the skill and personality of the DJ until the actual event takes place, which can be risky if you want parts of your celebration to be intimate with your guests.

• DJs have more control of the volume level. Unlike wedding live music from bands, a DJ can easily control volume levels when necessary but still be able to provide music all throughout the wedding ceremony and reception.

A Breakdown of STD Screening Procedures

How do you know if you need to get tested for a sexually transmitted disease? In most cases, people infected with STDs do not show any symptoms, that is why if you think you are at risk, you should schedule an STD screening at the nearest clinic or hospital in Singapore.

Although STD testing is not mandatory, you should include it in your annual checkup if you are aged between 13 to 64 years as recommended by most doctors, but if you feel uncomfortable about getting tested in a public hospital, you can buy a home testing kit and send the sample to a laboratory. However, not all STDs are screened using the same STD test.

Here are the common test procedures used for most STDs.

Testing for Gonorrhea

This sexually transmitted disease is caused by Neisseria gonorrhoeae—a sexually transmitted bacteria—and is one of the most common STDs in the world. The infection can be passed on through oral, vaginal, and anal contact with an infected partner, mostly because the person is not aware that he/she infected. Gonorrhea is asymptomatic although if there are symptoms, the person’s urethra, cervix, rectum, and eyes are affected.

There are seven Singapore HIV test methods to test for gonorrhea; these are urine sampling, nucleic acid amplification, gram stain, swab cultures, blood sampling, gonorrhea culture, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. For the urine sample, the patient is advised not to pee one hour before catching the sample for STD testing. Nucleic acid amplification is sometimes done with the urine sample to look for the bacteria. The doctor can also take swab samples from the urethra, vagina, rectum, pharynx, and cervix for cultures and the eyes for gram stain. Blood sampling is also another option, so that the laboratory technician can look for antibodies.

Testing for Chlamydia

This is caused by the bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis which can affect the throat, rectum, cervix, and urethra. It means that you can get infected if you have oral, vaginal and anal contact with an infected partner. Like most STDs on this list, chlamydia does not exhibit symptoms, that is why STD screening is required if you think you’re at risk.

There are two types of STD testing for chlamydia such as the chlamydia culture and the nucleic acid amplification tests. The patient has to submit urine or body fluid samples to the laboratory to confirm the presence of the bacteria. Chlamydia culture will need samples from the eyes, throat, cervix, urethra, or rectum before they are allowed to grow in a culture. The NAAT on the other hand, will look specifically for the genetic material of the bacteria, usually in a urine sample.

Testing for Syphilis

This sexually transmitted disease is caused by the bacteria Treponema pallidum, which spreads through oral, vaginal and anal contact with an infected partner. It can also be passed by an infected mother to the child. Although syphilis is curable during its earliest stage, it can cause a lot of complications later.

There is a specific STD test for syphilis because it often imitates the symptoms of other STDs. The patient has to provide one of the following samples: fluid from a sore, blood, and sore tissue. The fluid or the tissue from the syphilis sores can be taken in the late stages of the infection, but it is effective in detecting the presence of the bacteria. The blood testing that you can understand from http://www.kensingtonfamilyclinic.com/std-hiv/hiv-testing in Singapore is done to look for antibodies, or the sample is used for a rapid plasma regain test. However, the result can also point to other infections because the antibodies is not exclusive to syphilis infection, that is why the doctor will recommend a second test to confirm the results of the first.

Testing for Herpes

There are two types of the Herpes simplex virus which can cause oral and genital herpes. The infection is usually asymptomatic, but most patients will see sores or blisters at some point on the affected areas of the body. It’s not only spread through sexual contact, but it can also be passed through contact with herpes sores. That is why it is possible to get infected through kissing (saliva), skin contact (only on the parts that are infected), and genital secretions.

For those who do not show any symptom, blood tests are recommended in clinics in Singapore, while for those who already have sores, DNA tests and viral culture are the best options. The blood test will look for antibodies, although the test is not reliable during the initial infection or a few days after the infection. If there are symptoms, the doctor will need a swab sample from the affected area to determine which type of herpes virus is present. NAAT is more reliable than cultures, however, because the STD test will look specifically for the DNA of the virus, not just the antibodies.

Testing for Human Papillomavirus

Some types of HPV can cause non-cancerous warts, while others can lead to cancers. Of the more than 150 identified HPV types, there are two major classifications of the virus based on the areas they affect. The mucosal HPV affects the cells of moist surfaces, while the cutaneous HPV affect the skin. HPV is spread through oral, vaginal, and anal contact, but not through body fluids or blood, which means that it is transmitted through skin-to-skin contact.

There are two types of STD screening for HPV. The HPV test looks for the presence of the virus in swab samples from the affected areas, while the Pap test is recommended for women to check for any abnormal cells in the cervix. Women are recommended to undergo both tests if there is a risk of infection, and even if there is no risk of HPV infection, a Pap test is recommended for women every three years starting at the age of 21 or once every five years starting at the age of 30.

How to Find a Cheap Room in Saigon

Moving to a different place, be it for a short term or long term, can be a daunting task. There are so many things you will need to consider, like the type of accommodation you’ll want to make, your busy schedule, the busy schedule of the people who are coming with you, and of course, the cost of it all. Finding a place in a place that you are not familiar with can be a scary experience. However, finding a place in Vietnam doesn’t have to be so scary. If you’re planning on an apartment rental in Ho Chi Minh City, there are many ways for you to save money. Whether you choose to find an apartment rental in D2 or rent a place in D3, these tips can help you save your money when you rent apartment at HCMC.

1. Consider what you want

Whether you choose to rent a house or find a villa rental in Ho Chi Minh, you’re going to be faced with a lot of choices. But first, you’re going to need to know what you’re looking for in an apartment rental in Ho Chi Minh City. Of course, you will need to consider the interior of your apartment, like a spacious layout or good lighting. However, you shouldn’t neglect the exterior as well; these things could include what you want to have around your neighborhood, such as quiet streets or friendly neighbors.

Try listing down all the things that you feel are important to you, as well as to the other people that you will be renting the place with if there are any. You should be able to compromise between the things that you absolutely need when you’re looking for a place to rent apartment in HCMC. Of course, while making this list, it pays to be practical about your expectations; you should always consider your budget. If your budget isn’t too large, you can’t realistically expect a large condominium rental in district 1, D1, for example, unless you stumble upon a lucky find. However, you can visit best rent Vietnam to view and choose from the best space rental options at Saigon all in reasonable prices.

2. Befriend the locals

Making friends with locals can have a lot of benefits for you and your budget. Aside from making sure that they are willing and have the time to help you on your hunt to an apartment rental in Ho Chi Minh City, you will also need to make sure that they know the city well and can speak the language fluently. They can be your guide and ally when looking for a place to stay in, whether you’re looking to rent a house or opt for a villa rental.

You could go to one of the many parks nearby, chat with the people at your office, or go to one of the popular bars in Ho Chi Minh. If you’re not the drinking type, you could always hop to one of the many cafes in Vietnam and chat up the friendly locals. Mix and mingle with the people around you, and chances are you might just stumble upon a great deal, plus get a life-long friend as well.

3. Learn Vietnamese

If you have opened the websites mentioned above, you would notice that you would be able to navigate it easier if you knew a bit of Vietnamese. You don’t have to be completely fluent in the language; all you need are the basics to raise your chances of finding cheaper deals.

If you’re having trouble learning another language, or you’re a bit short on time, you could always bring one of your newfound local friends to translate for you. This is especially important if you’re meeting face-to-face with homeowners, to make sure that there isn’t any terrible miscommunication due to language barriers. You wouldn’t want to be stuck in an arrangement you don’t like while trying to rent apartment in Saigon.

4. Sign a contract

A contract can be one of the most important things that you will need to look for when looking for a Saigon apartment rental. Remember that the longer the contract, the chances of you saving also grows; if you can commit to a long-term contract, you can save more money. Landlords often offer contracts that last for twelve, six, or three months. The longer you stay, the less you’ll have to pay in the long run.

5. Rent a room

Of course, if renting house or staying in a villa isn’t your style, you could always opt to rent just a room, or better yet, a hostel bed. This can greatly reduce your costs, as you’re paying for a much smaller space. There are many places where you can find rooms like this, most of them printed on paper and posted outside houses. Another great way to find rooms likes these are by word of mouth, by asking around for affordable rooms. Who knows; with the right contacts, you may even find a great place to stay at D7!

6. Go online

While a travel agency can help you rent apartment in Saigon, with a bit of wit and a few tricks, you could get a much cheaper deal if you do the negotiations yourself. A travel agency can help you find a place to stay in on your behalf, but that also comes with a price. If you want to save on dollars and find a lovely home for an affordable price, you can choose to find your own place by browsing through online sites and create agreements with the property owner all on your own. For an updated list of spaces for rental in Vietnem, visit masteri thao dien for rent to find upscale homes at the right prices.

Purchasing the Right Copy Machine for Your Business

Many years back, there was a major difference between copiers and printers. Today, most office printers here in Singapore are multifunctional. A single machine can copy, scan, print, download, fax and even email documents. Other units also offer more advanced features that improves productivity, such as image editing, wireless connectivity, WiFi ready and built-in security features like biometric authentication.

With so much variety of printers and copiers found in the market, shopping for the right printer in Singapore can become daunting. These tips will help you purchase a copier machine by providing you details about the types of copier commonly available and giving you a glimpse of the key features.

Types of Printers
One of the first things you should do is to decide whether to have a back-and-white or colour printer. Once you have decided, start comparing specifications of different copiers, while keeping in mind your needs, budget and office space.

Type of Office
Copiers and printers meant for small offices or home offices are usually in desktop sizes to minimize space consumption. You can find a laser printer for a home office for as low as S$60, but we recommend getting a more reliable one for around S$300. Low-quality ones are meant only for occasional printing and is less likely able to meet your small office’s printing needs.

Large Offices
Office printers are usually table-top size or are freestanding types and are intended for multi-person usage. An office printer like this has the ability to connect to a network and include special features for more efficient scanning, printing, photocopying and faxing documents, as well as an option to print on various paper sizes. Prices of a good office printer from Singapore usually start at S$600 and can go up as high as S$5000.

Production
For a business that performs high-volume printing on a daily basis and requires advanced-level graphic quality, a production printer or a graphic art printer will best suit your operational needs. Production printers vary in prices depending on the specifications, but an entry level graphic art printer in Singapore usually starts at S$6000 and may go above S$30,000 for higher level models.

Printing Volume and Speed
Printing speed is one of the important specs to check out before buying a laser printer. Look for ppm (pages per minute) info in the spec sheet. We recommend to buy printer with a minimum of 50 ppm for small companies.
Scanning

Almost all printers today have built in scanners, but not all have duplex scanning feature or automatic feeder. Automatic feeding on a copier is important if you regularly scan large volumes of documents. Similarly, duplex scanning is important for back-to-back scanning of documents. You may also want to consider the optical resolution of the scanner if you think you will be scanning word documents and images.

Paper Capacity
This is often listed on the spec sheet as ‘cassette’ or ‘tray.’ Make sure to check this feature out to know whether the sizes of paper that the machine can support meet your needs.

Ink
It is advisable to keep in mind how much the ink will cost you over time. Before you buy printer, know first how many sheets you can print out of every cartridge and how much every replacement would cost you. Also, find out if it is possible to use ink refills purchased from a third-party provider.

Memory
Usually, a digital copier has some sort of memory in it, allowing it to retain some scans and documents. A copier’s internal memory is just similar to any computer’s hard drive. Depending on how heavy-duty a copier machine is, the built-in memory can range from 256MB to 1.5GB.

Servicing and Maintenance
Typically, service agreements for copier machines include, drums, toner and maintenance and repair of all parts. This set up ensures to free up employees and office staff from tackling printer’s toner level and maintaining printer’s functionality in the long run. Cleaning blades, rollers and other parts of the copier machine that wear out easily are usually covered.

Common Mistakes When Buying a Printer-Copier

1. Avoiding colour printer because it’s expensive
Many companies and businesses in Singapore avoid buying a copier simply because it is a lot expensive than monochrome machines. When you try to check the price of a monochrome copier and the coloured one side-by-side, the black-and-white one is cheaper. But are you outsourcing colour printer? How often do you need to print coloured documents? If your answer to the first question is yes and you need coloured printing every day, purchasing a colour printer will save you significant amount of money in the long run.

2. Under- or over-buying
Under- or over-buying is a common issue encountered when buying office equipment. How do you ensure you bought a copier machine that’s just right for your business? Do you really need a laser printer or will a carbon printer do? Ask yourself these two questions while you’re on the hunt: “Is it fast enough?” and “Does it have all the functions I need?” If yes, then most certainly it will suit you.

3. Buying a pre-owned unit
For a cheaper option, many establishments buy pre-owned printer. Sure, it can save you money upfront, but think about how it will save you more in the future. The equipment is already used (and probably abused) and may only last you a few years, requiring you to repair or replace with a new one sooner than expected. It can also be hard to find supplies and parts for older printer models. Your best bet for better savings, purchase a brand new one with the features you need.

Shopping for copiers and printers is somewhat like shopping for a new car. Know every car’s key features and find out whether it caters to all your needs.

6 Steps You Can Take to Keep Your Heart Healthy

According to the Ministry of Health in Singapore, fifteen people die from cardiovascular diseases every day, meaning that one out of every three deaths are linked to heart failure or a heart disease.

There are many factors that contribute to the development of heart conditions over time, one of which is exposure to constant stress either in the work environment or through stressful situations.

With time, these situations, coupled with an unhealthy lifestyle, can stress the heart. This eventually leads it to the heart weakening, or sometimes giving out entirely in the form of cardiac arrest, stroke, or heart failure. While a visit to the cardiologist, or heart doctor or heart specialist, and scheduling for a regular heart screening never hurts, this is often seen as a last resort among people with a hectic work schedule.

What Does a Healthy Heart Look Like?
Your heart is a sophisticated pump made out of muscles that oxygenates and channels blood throughout the entire body. It does this by squeezing and relaxing for about ninety times a minute for children, and about seventy times a minute for adults.

Some activities can add stress to the heart by weakening it or causing the build-up of plaque around the walls and arteries. This causes the blood to pump faster in order to keep circulating the blood normally, which in turn increases the pressure on the other blood vessels and arteries.

Steps to Keep Your Heart Healthy
The good news is that you don’t have to be one of these people to suffer from heart disease. Here are seven steps you can take to make sure your heart stays healthy:

1. Stick to a proper diet
Foods that are high in sugar and fat are one of the biggest contributors to the narrowing or clogging of the blood vessels and arteries, which eventually lead to higher blood pressure, and eventually, heart disease or heart failure.

2. Exercise regularly
Next to a proper diet, exercise is one of the best ways of keeping body fat and blood sugar to optimal levels within your system. As they are burned and converted into energy for your muscles, you will gradually start to build muscle mass in the areas of your body that you regularly use.
For instance, cardio exercises such as jogging or biking can increase your heart’s endurance, which allows you to do more and exert yourself without risking high blood pressure.

3. Get proper sleep
Lack of sleep and too much caffeine, when paired together on a regular basis because of our hectic everyday schedule, can eventually take its toll on one’s well-being leading to seek a heart specialist in Singapore as the build-up of stress increases a person’s heart rate.

Healthy adults need about seven to nine hours of sleep daily, and children and teenagers need more. To know exactly how many hours of sleep you need, write down the time you go to sleep and wake up without using an alarm.

4. Learn to manage stress
Lack of sleep and too much caffeine are not the only factors that increase stress, but also being in stressful situations or being in a stressful environment.

Long-term activation of your body’s stress response system results not only in depression, headaches, and digestive problems, but also puts you at increased risk of heart problems in the future.

Learning how to manage stress without resorting to unhealthy habits such as drinking or smoking can greatly help you maintain your current blood pressure, especially if you are prone or have a family history of heart conditions.

5. Lessen or stop doing things that increase your risk of heart disease
Everyone with a heart is at risk of getting heart disease later in life. However, there are a lot of factors that increase that risk, such as drinking, smoking (and exposure to secondhand smoke), unhealthy eating habits, and a family history of heart disease.

Though there are many ways to kick these unhealthy habits, the most important element to minimizing or avoiding these unhealthy habits is discipline. Once you are able to know and understand why you form the habits that you have, taking steps to minimize them or kicking them out entirely will be much easier.

6. See a cardiologist for a heart screening
A cardiologist is essentially a heart doctor, who looks at your heart through an X-ray and listens to your heartbeat through a stethoscope. There are many heart screening procedures that may be offered by your cardiologist, such as an electrocardiogram (ECG), where a machine detects abnormal heartbeats or scars in heart muscles that could indicate recent attacks.

Another screening procedure is the exercise treadmill, where you will be asked to exercise on a treadmill while a cardiologist takes your blood pressure and monitors the electrical activity in your heart.

Tilt table tests are also a form of heart screening procedure, where you will be asked to lie on a table that moves from horizontal to vertical position. This procedure monitors your heart rate and blood pressure as your body experiences changes in gravity and blood flow. Any anomalies that are detected would then be looked at carefully and diagnosed if needed.

Finding the best cardiologist or heart specialist in Singapore is not that difficult, as Singapore offers many government hospitals as well as private clinics that have a cardiology center.

Note: This list is compiled in no particular order.

A Breakdown of the Freight Forwarding Process

International freight is usually broken down into five steps regardless of the place of origin or the destination of the cargo. Sometimes, depending on the additional requirements in the place of destination such as Singapore, the process is extended.

Therefore, business experts recommend that entrepreneurs who import and/or export goods on a regular basis should hire a freight forwarding services company instead of relying on an individual freight broker to negotiate with a logistics company. Remember that in most cases, the freight forwarder is a separate party from the party responsible for the actual transportation of goods, a job usually performed by a logistics services company or a shipping company.

Freight forwarding is a complicated and expensive process, but as an entrepreneur, you need to understand how it works and why you need a third-party freight forwarding at Singapore to act as liaison to the various parties involved in the inspection, haulage, storage, and clearances.

1. Export Haulage

The first step is to transport the goods from the company warehouse to another warehouse in Singapore (sometimes called local freight) usually assigned by the freight forwarding services company. In some cases, the storage warehouse is also owned by the freight forwarder instead of leased from another company. Depending on your arrangement with the freight forwarder, either you or the consignee is responsible for the other processes.

2. Inspection and Documentation

Although the freight forwarder will assist the entrepreneur throughout most of the process, you will also have to provide accurate information during the receipt and inspection of the goods. You should supply the following: description of the items in the containers (be as precise as possible); indication of any hazardous items; weight in both kilograms and pounds; country of origin and port entry details; and related information required by the freight forwarder.

3. Completion and Submission of Documents

The freight forwarding company must then provide all the documents to the customs before the goods are given approval to exit the country of origin. Although the type of documents might vary in some countries, most international freight will need documents such as the following:

• The Bill of Lading, which is a form signed by the entrepreneur who owns the products and the shipping company
• A certificate indicating the origin of the goods; an inspection certificate that indicates the goods have been approved by the customs or the inspector
• An export license that will include details of how many and how much goods can be exported by the concerned party
• An invoice from the seller to the buyer, which will be used to determine the value of the products; and
• A packing list that details all the items and the relevant information such as weigh, measurement and packaging.

4. Handling and Import Haulage

Once you have completed the documents needed to export the goods, the freight forwarder will be handling the rest of the process for you. A reliable freight forwarding services company in Singapore usually has a contract with one shipping company or logistics company that will provide the transportation of the goods. These goods are usually placed in containers and transported through land freight, sea freight, and air freight.

If it’s intended for export, the shipping company might use a combination of all types of transportation to get the goods to the consignee (receiver of the goods) in the cheapest and fastest way possible. The fees charged by the air freight, sea freight, or land freight companies are charged directly to the freight forwarder in Singapore. To avoid confusion and surprise fees, you should always ask for a detailed breakdown of the costs and surcharges of freight forwarding.

Once the cargo has arrived at its destination, it will undergo another process of customs inspection and clearance. To avoid problems with the requirements, don’t hesitate to ask www.freightmaster.sg from Singapore for details about the documents, and to make sure that the freight broker assigned to you is licensed. As for the fees required for the destination handling, the shipping company or the consignee might pay for the costs depending on your arrangement.

5. Import Haulage

Once the destination handling is cleared and completed, that is the only time the cargo can be dispatched from the warehouse. Like the export haulage process, the freight forwarder must make sure the cargo will reach the consignee on schedule and in good condition. The process can involve land freight or other modes of transportation, depending on the location of the consignee.

However, the consignee can also handle the haulage himself/herself without the help of the freight forwarder, but he/she will still have to negotiate with a logistics company for the transportation of goods. If you choose to sign with a freight forwarder from the export haulage to the import haulage, it will save you time and effort when negotiating with other logistics services. However, if the freight forwarder services do not include import haulage, the company should still make recommendations for trucking companies that can help.

Although you can easily break down the process into the following, export haulage, origin handling, land freight/sea or ocean freight/air freight, destination handling, and import haulage; freight forwarding is so much more complicated than that. You, the shipper, should work with the consignee, the freight forwarder or the freight broker, and the shipping line to complete the process. However, freight forwarding can be simplified with the help of experts from a freight forwarder company in Singapore.

Dry Cleaning: What It Is

Dry cleaning is one of the most common laundry service in most laundry pick up and laundry delivery shops in Singapore, but not everyone knows what happens during the process and why it’s the fastest way to get you clothes washed.

Let’s look at the process of dry cleaning and what makes it ideal for cleaning certain types of clothes, linen, and upholstery.

The Origins of Dry Cleaning

Dry cleaning is not a new process in most commercial laundry services like laundry first/ from Singapore. In fact, there is evidence that the dry cleaning process goes as far back as the time of the ancient Greeks and Romans. The technique is quite different from the one the laundry service uses today, because they used a type of clay to remove dirt from the fabrics, although it was still essentially a cleaning process that did not use water.

Most wash and fold laundry services shops in Singapore, however, model their process to the use of dry cleaning solvents which became popular in the mid-1800s. Over the years, the dry cleaning technique and the products used continued to improve as the demands for safer alternatives were considered. Most of the concern focused on the search for solvents that were less flammable, and by the 1930s, the most popular type of dry cleaning solvents in most laundry service shops was created.

The idea of using a solvent to remove dirt from fabrics is based on the extraction of compounds by using non-polar chemicals. Delicate types of fabrics that are not supposed to be soaked in water could get damaged, because most of the stains can only be removed in high temperatures and water-based detergents. The non-polar dry cleaning solvent will not interact with the fabrics and will avoid stretching, shrinking, and distorting the fabric. Not only is dry cleaning ideal for delicate fabrics, but for almost any type of fabric including uniform laundry that is prone to wear and tear.

The Dry Cleaning Solvent

There are various dry cleaning solvents that www.laundryfirst.sg in Singapore have been using in their 24 hour laundry service. These includes solvents like turpentine spirits, kerosene, benzene, camphor oil, petroleum solvents, white gasoline, carbon tetrachloride, chloroform, glycol ethers, n-propyl bromide, liquid carbon dioxide, trichloro trifluoroethane, trichloroethane, decamethylcyclopentasiloxane, trichloroethylene, and perchloroethylene. The most widely used commercial dry cleaning solvent is the perchloroethylene which is also known as perc.

The dry cleaning process, however, is not entirely a dry process because most commercial laundry services still use other detergents and chemicals to remove stains. These are special types of detergents that perform the following functions: carry the moisture to remove water-soluble dirt, suspend the dirt removed from the clothes, and to act as spotting agent to allow the water and solvent to remove the stains.

You should also ask the laundry services if they use the following chemicals: brighteners, fabric conditioner, bactericide, anti-static, and anti-lint products. The dry cleaning machine will look similar to a regular washing machine and will also use mechanical friction or tumbling, but the chemicals are less harsh on delicate fabrics.

Questions You Need to Ask Your Electrician

Finding a good electrician in Singapore is easy if you know what to ask. It is essential to find the best licensed electrician because electricity is an important resource that also has the capacity to cause injuries and damage.

These are the important questions you need to ask the electrician services company before hiring them.

1. What type of electrician services are available? Narrow down your choices of electricians in Singapore by looking at the services they provide.
2. Do you provide a free consultation or inspection? If you’re not sure what the problems is, it’s better to call in the expert electrician to inspect the place.
3. Do you provide free estimates? You can ask this during the site inspection.
4. Can you provide a price listing for the services you offer? Even if you don’t need other repairs now, you should ask for a complete list of services available.
5. Are there any special electrician services or packages available? Some electrical services companies specialize in specific jobs. Knowing this can be helpful especially if you own commercial buildings.
6. Are there any additional costs not included in the price list? Do you have an hourly rate or a fixed rate?
7. If there are damages or changes to the structure affected by the electrical works, does your electrician services company provide additional services to fix it or do I have to hire another professional to fix it?
8. What are the most common problems you work on? This will let you know if the electrician has any experience with your problem.
9. Do you have any experience with this specific electrical works problem?
10. Will you provide the materials and tools, or do I have to purchase some of the items needed?
11. Do you recommend shops or products where I can purchase replacements for light fixtures? Some electrician services company like power max in Singapore provide their own quality materials.

12. I have a fixed budget; can you provide a breakdown of all the expenses for this specific work? It may be possible to choose what you’re only willing to pay for.
13. Do you provide emergency repairs? Owners of businesses and commercial buildings should have a reliable electrician to contact in case emergency repairs are needed to avoid interruption of daily operations.
14. Are you a licensed and accredited electrician? It’s important to hire a good electrician with the right training and experience to avoid accidents from substandard work.
15. Are you insured? There is always a risk of accidents at work. You don’t want to pay for unnecessary fees in case of injury or damage to the structure.
16. Do you have any specialty? Some electricians like Singapore http://www.powermax.com.sg have more experience with specific jobs than others.
17. Do you have any additional training and experience?
18. Is it possible for me to inspect your credentials?
19. Can you work with special projects, such as installation, data cabling, solar equipment, and others?
20. Do you work with other contractors for remodeling spaces?
21. How about working in newly-constructed buildings?
22. How long have you been in business?
23. Who will perform the work? Are they employees or will you be sending contractors?
24. If you are sending contractors, are they covered by the contractor’s insurance?
25. Can you provide the credentials of the members of the team who will be working on the problem?
26. Are there differences in the rate of electrician specialists in your company?
27. How do I pick from one of the licensed electrician specialists in your company?
28. What are the differences between the different licensed electrician specializations?
29. Will my problem require the expertise of a master electrician?
30. Can you provide references or reviews? You can find some of the reviews on the company website, but you can also gain additional information from the electrician.
31. Is it possible for me to check any work in progress?
32. What are your experiences in electrical works at home?
33. What are your experiences in electrical works at commercial and industrial buildings?
34. Are you well-versed in the electrical code requirements of Singapore?
35. Do you have any experience in the installation of electrical appliances?
36. Do you have any experience in the repair or troubleshooting of electrical appliances?
37. How long do repairs take? When will the work commence? The electrician should come in early to start the work and finish it on the agreed time and date.

38. Will I be notified before the work starts? This is important to know if you own a business so that you can prepare beforehand.
39. The building needs electrical repairs; are you going to work with live circuit or should I provide a shutdown notice beforehand?
40. I own a commercial building; will my daily operations be affected? In some cases, the elevators are left to function while the work is ongoing.
41. Can I stay at home while you work and how long will you work within a day if the work takes several days?
42. Are there any changes I need to be aware of once the work starts?
43. Am I allowed to check the progress of the work periodically? If the work will take several days, you should be allowed to inspect their work, or you should at least be updated of the progress.
44. Do I need to apply for a permit for electrical works especially for a commercial building?
45. Will you perform a safety inspection once the work is done?
46. Are there any potential problems that I might have overlooked?
47. Do you guarantee quality of your work?
48. Do you have any warranty of your work?
49. Does your warranty also cover the materials you used?
50. If there are problems, can I contact your company?

What Makes a Good Commercial Electrician?

Part of property management is maintaining a safe and well-functioning electrical wiring in a building. To be able to achieve this, one should hire a commercial electrician. Commercial electricians specialize on the electrical structure of factories, hotels, shopping complexes, and residential buildings and are the people responsible with the installation and maintenance of the electrical systems of the said structures.

So, if commercial electrician is what we need, how are we able to know that the prospect contractor we’re currently dealing with is a good catch? Here are the most important traits that you and your condo manager should look for to be able to differentiate a good commercial electrician from a bad one.

1. A good commercial electrician is adaptable and creative
From years of experience, professional electrical contractors have done countless of estate maintenance projects and are already capable to provide on the spot solutions to any electrical problems. Oftentimes, when buildings are constructed, engineers and architects and even your condo manager have no idea how and where the electrical systems will be installed. The job to find ways for the installment of outlets and wires is entirely up to the electrician. The electrician recommended by one of the best property management companies in Singapore for your requirements needs to be creative and inventive enough to work out a solution plan and then get the idea executed as soon as possible.

2. A good commercial electrician is able to work with other contractors
Being able to adjust and work well with other people is another important trait that a commercial electrician should possess. Electricians should be able to communicate effectively with the building owner, managing agent, and other contractors and explain the job in a clear and understandable manner.

3. A good commercial electrician has ample experience and relevant licensing
In Singapore, electrical contractors are licensed only when they complete apprenticeship. Continuing higher education, in the form of seminars and trainings, is also a must to keep up with the ever changing technology. You and your managing agent can assure this by asking for certificates of recognition from a prospect contractor before deciding on hiring them.

4. A good commercial electrician is complete with essential equipment
Electrical contractors should be complete with relevant equipment that can be used to evaluate existing electrical structure and perform estate maintenance for the property’s power system. Find out whether a prospect electrician uses advanced detection methods, like computer evaluation techniques or camera fitted probes, to accurately locate and diagnose potential or existing electrical hitches.

5. A good commercial electrician shows a sense of interest in addressing client’s needs
Oftentimes, when an employee’s field of specialty has to be performed, that employee feels excited and challenged to complete the task. Same thing goes with electrical contractors. Since this is their field of specialization, when a property owner or a property managing agent presents an electrical problem, they should convey a sense of excitement to the client.

Looking for a good commercial electrician could be something that is uncommon for many of us, but knowing the traits that make a good electrical contractor helps us get acquainted with this task more. To further help you in searching for a quality contractor, seek professional advices from your property management company.

The Function of Brand Names and Logos in Marketing

Having a registered mark for your goods and services allows you exclusive rights to use and profit from this brand indefinitely. Not only will trademark registration bring more revenue for your business, but this also puts more value on the brand that can transcend the combined physical assets of your company.

What Trademark Registration Can Do
Trademark registration protects your intellectual property from being stolen and used without your knowledge and consent under law. This allows you to enjoy all the benefits that come with the right to exclusive use of your brand name and logo.

Much like real, physical property, trademarks can be bought, sold, borrowed, and even rented for a certain amount of time. The key thing to note here is that you can gain all these profits without having to worry about losing your brand.

Here are a few other advantages that will justify you to register trademark in Singapore:

• Brand uniqueness (your goods and services are more distinguished);
• Right to exclusive use; and
• Certified proof of ownership.

These advantages, and more, can be accessed fully and exclusively when you apply for trademark registration, which is now easier to apply for in Singapore. But how do you come up with a registered mark? What is a brand? And how do you market it to your audience?

The Brand and the Logo
With countless of products and services that are becoming increasingly available to the market, it becomes harder to distinguish yourself from others despite the objective quality of yours.

The concept of branding itself can be pretty vague, even for people who have studied marketing, but the gist of it is simple. The basic definition of the word “brand” is that it is a name, term, design, symbol, or any feature that distinguishes one’s goods and services from those of others.

In the world of marketing, there is so much more to think about and put into your brand. Oftentimes, much of what makes the brand is the emotional aspect (how the brand makes you feel) just as the physical one (what it looks like).

The Brand Idea
There are many ways to think of a brand, but one of the best ways to think about it when you’re trying to come up with it is as an idea.

The idea for your brand has to be easily understood and relevant to your target demographic. Not only are there many ways for your idea to be too complicated for your audience to grasp quickly, but there are also so many ways it can be unimportant to them.

A good thing to think about when coming up with your brand is this question from the perspective of a potential consumer: “What’s in it for me?” This helps to keep your brand from being self-serving and makes it relatable to your target audience.

The key thing in order to relate to your audience is empathy. The brand isn’t solely about the product, but is and should also be about the customer experience.

The Logo
All these elements make up the logo, which is what you see on different products and services to allow themselves to stand out among hundreds, if not thousands, of other market players and competitors.

The logo is simply the graphical representation of your brand, and what consumers see when they buy a product or service. As products can be easily copied by other players in the market, your brand should be what makes yours stand out.

While there is no one right way to make a logo that’s effective and draws in customers, there are a lot of ways that a logo can confuse your customers.

The brand has to convey a lot of things to the consumer in so short a time span, which is why it’s usually best to hire a graphic designer if you’re not absolutely sure you can do it yourself.

The Difference between TM and R
The ™ and ® symbols are some of the most commonly used in the industry in both branding and marketing, and are very important aspects of IP protection allow you to protect your brand.

™ – This is the symbol used for claiming ownership over a brand not necessarily offered protection by trademark. This brand may be either be unregistered or in the process of being reviewed to see if they are qualified to register trademark.

Using this symbol next to your brand name allows you to assert your ownership and prevent anyone from using it either by accident or mistake. However, you should apply to register trademark for your brand before doing so.

® – The “registered” symbol denotes a trademark that has already been issued a certificate of registration by the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore. After you successfully register TM for your brand, you are given a protection of ten years from the date of application.

Conclusion
Having a protected trademark along with a well-designed brand that can appeal to potential consumer demographics and draw them in is often the first step to establishing brand loyalty.

Brand loyalty is a pattern of behavior among consumers where they become committed to brands, making several instances of repeated purchases over the span of an indefinite period of time regardless of convenience or price.

A successful brand is able to establish brand loyalty through a lot of things, the most important of which is through customer engagement, which is the first step to maintaining a successful business in Singapore.

Tips for a Healthier Barbecue Party

Each day is a perfect day to do some barbecue cookout party. Lazing around in the pool or beach, sunbathing while enjoying your lemonade, and indulging your favourite barbecue meal have always been part of outdoor celebrations in Singapore. While most summer activities revolve on fun outdoors and enjoying delectable grilled meals, it’s still enticing to indulge on local barbecue favourites like otah and satay. However, not everyone gets to enjoy grilled goods as high-fat meats are often used for barbecue meals. So to help you come up with a bbq party wherein everyone gets to enjoy the meals that you prepared, here’s a list of tips on how you can have a healthier bbq party.

1. Go for Low-Fat Meats Instead of the High-Fat Ones
One way to have a healthier barbecue meal for your party is to substitute the high-fat meats to low-fat alternatives. Ask your Singapore bbq catering provider to come up with a menu that uses low-fat meats instead of the usual sausages, hotdogs, and beef patties. If you’re a health and figure-conscious individual, then you already know that a serving of burger patties with coleslaw and potato salad on the side, served sundae and lemonade already holds 200 calories. If you decided to pair it with an alcohol drink, then you’d be consuming another 500 calories.

Although it’s fine to spoil yourself during these occasions, going for healthier alternatives would still be a lot better. So instead of sticking with the regular high-fat patties, ask your bbq catering provider to serve lean meats like ground turkey breast instead, or other alternatives like shrimp kebabs, skinless chicken breasts, and salmon.

2. Incorporate Low-Fat Dishes with the High-Fat
A barbecue meal is nothing without salads and sides. Sidings like pasta salad, potato salad, macaroni salad, and coleslaw are the traditional favourites to complement each barbecue meal. But since these sidings are full of sodium and calories, it would be better if you just choose one Singapore bbq catering food option and substitute the rest with grilled veggies and fresh fruits. As you plan the menu for your party, ask you bbq catering provider to include some vegetable kebabs on your bbq meal instead of sticking to all-meat meals.

You can go for mushrooms, zucchini, peppers, onions, and cherry tomatoes for your vegetable kebabs, while pineapples, peaches, and melons are your best bet for fruits that go well with barbecues. If you’re looking for a potato salad alternative, then grill sweet and white potatoes, drizzle with some seasonings and olive oil, and you’re good. With these selection of side dishes, you’re sure to get full without ruining your figure.

3. Take Note of the Calories of your Beverages
Cold, refreshing drinks is one of the major factors to enjoy an outdoor party. But instead of replenishing your liquids with margaritas and frozen daiquiris, replace this calorie-loaded drinks with sangria or white wine instead. To add more variety, you can ask your Singapore bbq catering provider to also serve flavoured herbal teas with orange or lemon slices. This will help you quench your thirst without gulping large amount of calories.

4. Think of Food Safety First
Always remember that humid environments is the main enemy when it comes to food safety storage. If you’re serving mayonnaise-based salads and dips, do serve them in a bed of ice. Also remember that your perishables shouldn’t be kept outside for more than two hours, especially if the temperature on your location is over 90 degrees Fahrenheit. When you’re about to grill, immediately discard the marinade you used for your raw meat and use a thermometer to measure the heat that you’ll use for grilling.

Selecting the Best Gemstone for the Proposal and the Wedding Rings

Selecting the perfect ring for your beloved might seem like a tedious task, but think of this as a once-in-a-lifetime grand gesture to express your love through something that can be touched and seen. Finding the ring isn’t as difficult as it sounds if you take note of the most important characteristics such as the type of gemstone, gemstone qualities, mounting, and setting.

Let’s look at each of these characteristics in more detail.

Types of Gemstones
There seems to be an agreement among couples that a proposal ring should have a diamond, but this is not the only gemstone you should consider. You can also mix and match different gems if you decide to have a customized wedding ring.

Sapphire. One of the four precious gems (besides diamond, emerald, and ruby), sapphire comes in other colors besides blue. It’s a hard gem, but not as expensive as diamond.
Emerald. The luxurious green color can be paired with yellow gold and other gems to create a unique design.
Ruby. The blood-red tone of ruby is just as attractive as clear diamonds, but the highest quality can be more expensive than the latter. It is getting popular for wedding bands in Singapore due to the colours and pricing
Pearl. This organic gem can easily tarnish and scratch, but its beauty gives the jewelry a classic, elegant look when set into harder gems.
Amethyst. This purple gem is durable and can be paired with rose gold, but it’s not a hard stone.
Turquoise. The pretty color can be paired with other gems for a luxurious ring.
Aquamarine. A type of beryl stone, aquamarine is tough and clear, and with the right cut, it can be as dazzling as a diamond engagement ring.
Topaz. The clearer the topaz, the more beautiful and expensive it is.
Garnet. Besides the signature red color, you can also find pink garnet. They look gorgeous on rings with antique motif.
Tourmaline. This gem is a mix of different colors and won’t easily scratch, chip or tarnish.
Opal. Each opal is unique from the other, that is why it’s a perfect gem for a customized engagement ring.
Moissanite. The clear varieties can look like diamonds with the right cut. They’re also the second hardest gem, but are not as expensive as diamonds.
Diamond. Not all diamonds are colorless, but colored diamonds are sometimes more expensive than the nearly-colorless varieties.

Gemstone Qualities
When you have decided on the type of gemstone for your wedding rings, you should consider the following qualities while at the jewelry shops in Singapore:

Carat. This is the unit of measurement for the weight or size of the gem. The higher the carat, the more expensive the gem is, but remember that size doesn’t have to be the most important factor when it comes to choosing rings.
Color. Gems with the most vivid and brightest colors have the best quality, but are also the most expensive types. Some gems also come in other colors, so the rarer colors tend to fetch higher prices. For an engagement ring, the medium-tone is recommended by jewelers.
Clarity. All gemstones have flaws, but that doesn’t mean that it’s bad. Some flaws can make the gem rare by changing the natural color, while others can create unique patterns. If you want a gem with no inclusions (the name for the flaws), look for more expensive wedding rings.
Cut. The cut of the gem can make the inclusions less noticeable or bring out the color of the gem more vibrantly, so it should maximize the brilliance of the gem and the reflection of the light on the surface. Remember that some diamonds can even appear dull when not cut properly.

Gemstone Mounting
The mounting refers to the metal used for the ring band. The following are the most commonly used metals you might find at jewelry shops in Singapore:

Platinum is very strong, pure, and hypoallergenic.
Gold doesn’t tarnish, can be cleaned easily, and can be mixed with other alloys to create other colors.
Palladium doesn’t tarnish and is hypoallergenic and flexible.
Titanium is hypoallergenic and corrosion-resistant.
Sterling Silver can have a matte finish and comes in either bright white or grayish white colors.
Tungsten is scratch-resistant and durable, ideal for wedding rings.

Gemstone Setting
The gem setting refers to the metal form, which has prongs and claws, that holds the gem in place. It is not to be confused with mounting or finding, or the name for the metal. So, why is this important? The setting of the gemstone is determined by the size and shape of the gem so that it maximizes the brilliance as well as prevent the gem from falling off.

These are the types of setting you might see at jewelry shops in Singapore while looking for a wedding ring.

Four-Prong. It’s ideal for any gem shape because it allows the maximum amount of light to come into contact with the stone.
Six-Prong. This provides a more a secure setting for the gem than the four-prong type.
Multiple Prong. Some rings have more than six prongs to show off other qualities of the gem and to make the setting more secure at the same time.
Full Bezel. The gem is encircled completely by and is set deep into the metal. This setting gives more protection than the prongs and can be used for any gem shape.
Semi-Bezel. Some parts of the gem are not closed in by the metal, allowing more light to touch it.
Flush Set. In this setting, the gems are found beneath the bands to protect it from scratches.
Pave. This setting allows for several gems to be set closely together with only thin beads of metal separating them.
Pave with Millegrain. The metal edge of the wedding ring is lined with tiny gems to give it a more luxurious look.
Channel Set. The gems in this setting are set side by side within a groove of the metal band. A proposal ring with this setting sometimes has a center stone.

The Importance of Having Regular Car Maintenance

Any car trouble can turn into a hassle, especially if you’re in a hurry or if your drive brings you some place far from any car servicing shops. In order to avoid ending up in such desperate situations, it is important for you to regularly keep track of your car maintenance duties. Getting regular maintenance sessions with your dealer can easily save you from dealing with frustrating mechanical breakdowns.

The importance of regular car maintenance cannot be stressed enough. In purchasing a vehicle, whether new or used, it must be considered a big investment on your part — hence it becomes a duty to follow a maintenance schedule to protect the asset from costly breakdowns and repairs. Not only does a constant check-up help you get the best performance your car can offer, but it also increases the machine’s life span.

In general, car repair is a broad subject composed of many aspects. It can range from a simple part inspection or maintenance to a vehicle’s complete overhaul. The repairs and condition vary with each car, which is why it is important to get your vehicle personally checked by a best car servicing in Singapore specialist.

Consequences

While there are a number of people in Singapore with too heavy work schedule or tight budget to even bring their vehicle in for a consultation, poorly maintained cars can actually put their life at risk. Cars which fail to get a routine general maintenance check-up tend to act up and cause problems out of the blue, endangering the life of the driver and passengers with potential car collisions.

It also goes without saying that improper car maintenance prompts you to spend a thousand more dollars over repairs and surgeries. With that, it is greatly advised for any car owner to always consider the importance of having a regular car repair. There are many shops offering car servicing in Singapore which can help you ensure that your vehicle is not only safe but also at its peak condition.

Several car servicing measures must be observed to keep your car running efficiently and extend its mechanical lifespan. These measures must be undertaken routinely, instead of putting it off for a few months after a single consultation

You can check with your owner manual for a quick guide and run-through about the overall process. However, personally taking your car to a car workshop is still highly encouraged so it can be thoroughly checked by a mechanic. There might be issues you won’t spot at one glance, or existing technical problems that isn’t written down in the pages of your manual.

Tire check

The pressure of your tires must be checked every time you head out to avoid any related problems while on the road. This includes the spare tires you keep in your trunk, which generally often goes overlooked. Remember that the weight of your car is carried by your tires, thus they must be sturdy and strong in order to ensure its overall performance doesn’t disappoint.

This is one aspect to car servicing you can also opt to do yourself with the use of a tire gauge. It is important to point out any faulty issues, such as having an under inflated tire, for it can make your driving experience perilous as you hit the brakes. Tire maintenance also involves tire rotation to keep them wear evenly. This results to increased consistency and overall safety.

Brakes

Having your brakes checked regularly is also essential for a safer driving experience. For one, the brakes are considered as the most critical component of your vehicle. Although they are often overlooked by many, car servicing centers in Singapore never fail to remind car owners of how important it is to get regular brake check-ups.

Thanks to the many advancements in technology, new cars now have improved brake features — but still, that doesn’t spare them from the need of undergoing routine inspection and maintenance checks. Operational issues must be prioritized as soon as possible to avoid machine failure and additional costly repairs.

Oil and filter change

Car maintenance also requires having your car’s oil and filter changed every once in a while. This is actually considered as one of the most common requirements to keep your vehicle’s performance at its peak. To keep things short, regular oil change is crucial since it becomes invaluable to your engine’s life. It effectively reduces wear and friction as well as directs heat away from rather critical areas. In turn, it makes engine parts run cooler.

Having a regular oil and filter change also prevents the accumulation of rust and corrosion and helps in reducing engine noise at the same time. This is one aspect to a good vehicle maintenance check that is recommended by most mechanics in Singapore since it serves as a key to a long and hassle-free machine life.

Other services

Apart from the key maintenance aspects presented above, there are also other services you must take into consideration to maintain a well-performing vehicle. Coolant levels must be kept filled to the correct level to prevent destructive engine wear and tear. Wiper blades should be checked and replaced (if worn). Additionally, batteries must also be checked thoroughly— keeping in mind that they generally last for a good 3-5 years.

Belts and hoses must also be checked regularly, inspecting if there are any leaks or cracks that needs immediate tending. Old spark plugs should also be checked, if not replaced.

Common Plumbing Problems and Mistakes

Usually the most common plumbing problems we have at home are clogged drains. Some problems however can be more than just simple drainpipe blockages. What are the common plumbing problems and what should we do? When do we call a reliable plumber for help? The following is a list of common problems and mistakes and the steps to keep your plumbing at home working perfectly.

Clogged drains. Most drain cleaners don’t do the work. Some are even harmful when used often. Clog removers can sometimes eat away at the drainpipes regardless of the material it’s made of (usually pipes are made of PVC or metal). The best way is to prevent clogging from happening is to keep the drains clear. Avoid placing small items near the drain to prevent blockage. Make sure to clean the strainers or stoppers from time to time. Ask your local plumbing contractor for options if you want these. Keeping your clogs clean however sometimes does not do the job. Reliable plumbing services in Singapore offer cleaning of waste pipes, bathtubs, and toilet bowls. You may also opt for a scheduled maintenance of your plumbing works.

Running toilets waste a lot of water and can add up to your bill. This usually happens when the flapper valve does not fit properly. The flapper valve allows the water to pass from the tank to the bowl. If fixing this is beyond your skills, it would only worsen the problem. Call a reliable plumber.

If you are planning a renovation and engaging a good plumbing services from Singapore or remodeling of your bathroom, make sure that there is enough space around the toilets. This will not only prevent small objects from accidentally dropping into the bowl, but there will be enough leg room as well. If you do not have this option or the budget to fix the placement of the toilet, make sure to avoid placing objects near it.

Dripping faucets. This is usually caused by the deteriorating washer made of rubber or silicone. When this happens the washer does not prevent enough water from pushing its way through the pipes. Ignoring this problem, no matter how common, can rack up your water bills. Replacing the washer will need specialized tools. It’s best to consult a reliable plumber if the problem has been going on for a long time. Otherwise, you can do the job yourself.

Silent leaks. Some issues cannot be seen right away until you notice that your water bill has gone up. Schedule an appointment with a plumber for maintenance and check-ups. Low water pressure can also be a sign that the pipes leading to your home have a leakage. Ignoring this problem might cause damages to your property.

Low water pressure. The most common cause is a blockage of deposits in the faucet aerators. Some faucets have aerators that can be removed for cleaning. If no changes occur even when you do this, the problem might be even more serious. A pipe may have a leakage that you could not see. It could also be due to problems in your local water supply system.

Leaky pipes. Usually leaks occur at U-joints in pipes. If you notice a water build-up in pipes leading to your house, there is a possibility that a line is broken. Some leaks however are not noticed immediately. Fixing leaks can be easy but if you do not want the mess that goes with it, call plumbing services or a 24 hours plumber.

Lack of traps or vents in the drains. The S-shaped pipe under your sink is an example of a trap. If you need to make sure your home’s plumbing has enough traps and vents, ask a reliable plumber about it.

Water heaters have pressure and temperature relief valves. The valves have to be placed correctly for them to work. The installation of water heaters should be done by a licensed plumber to avoid problems.

Fast-fixes that go wrong. Sometimes the problem seems minimal that we tend to come up with easy and fast solutions. If it is beyond your repairing skills, do not try to do it yourself. Call a 24 hours plumber if a problem occurs at night.

Poor installation. It is good to invest in quality plumbing. When planning to move into a house or building a new one, consult a plumbing contractor. This will save you money, time and effort. The fewer problems in the future, the less worries for your family. Most plumbing contractors have websites if you need more detailed information on the services they provide. One common mistake is that drainpipes do not have enough slope. The wastewater will travel slower and there is a tendency for waste materials and debris to accumulate.

For fuel gas piping, Singapore has laws for the supply, installation and fitting of gas pipes. It is important that you know your rights for your safety.

Mismatched pipes. This can also be avoided if proper installation is done. Sometimes we overestimate our plumbing skills and consequently cause bigger problems in the future. Pay attention to the pipe size, material and fitting. Better yet, ask a plumber to replace the pipes for you.

Finding local plumbers can also be a hassle. Luckily, Singapore has licensed quality plumbing services providers for every plumbing needs. Determine your problem first. Knowing the cause beforehand will make the job or repairs easier. Keep your budget and time constraints in mind as well especially if you need a quick repair at home. Keep a list of numbers of your reliable plumber or the nearest plumbing services center. Lastly, make sure that the plumber is licensed and qualified for the task.

How to Use Your VoIP Service

Voice over Internet Protocol or VoIP is a cost-efficient and safe way to transmit messages no matter where you are in the world. In Singapore, the hosted VoIP system is the most preferred method of communication by businesses, especially companies that send their employees overseas or have offices outside the country.

Get to know the different trends in VoIP services before selecting which hosted VoIP system or cloud VoIP works best for your company.

How Does VoIP Work?

In the past two decades, companies have been slowly switching from public switched telephone network (or PTSN) to VoIP because it costs less, has advanced features, safer, and includes other perks. VoIP has evolved over the years because of the demands in business and communication. To better understand how it works, let’s look at the meaning of the terms used in VoIP.

VoIP is the successor to the time-division multiplexing system, but it has been around for some time in the business sector until it became available recently to the public with the use of applications that support VoIP. IP, an offspring of the web, refers to the standards needed for data to travel in a common network. The “IP” in VoIP is the modern Internet protocol which is the means of supporting a combination of the voice delivered through the TDM or time-division multiplexing telephony and the web-based data streams.

VoIP evolved because there was a need to combine the Web-based data streams and the closed-circuit TDM telephony at a low cost. TDM used to run on a voice network separate from the IP; therefore, VoIP is the intersection of the Internet and telephony, where the latter is the medium for the voice while the former is the channel.

TDM operates in a closed circuit or a dedicated connection, which is safer than VoIP, but does not allow for sharing of the data. This is where the high cost of traditional telephony comes from. In voip ip pbx from Singapore the voice codes are converted into digital codes in a process called packetization and travel through the web using the most efficient path so that it uses minimal network resource. As a result, there is little to no traffic at all and it is also easier to manage data.

How Do I Choose a VoIP Vendor?

Choosing the correct VoIP vendor in Singapore means that you should also understand how this voice technology is supposed to work. Upgrading the company’s telephone system to VoIP will boost overall productivity as well as provide an entry point for other companies that want to upgrade their telephony systems.

When purchasing VoIP services, there are always two factors involved: the service and the phone system. Most hosted VoIP system services in Singapore include both and do not require integration because they will provide the company with IP-enabled hardware. However, for companies that choose to upgrade their existing telephony systems, the analog or digital phones must be converted so that they can work in a dedicated voice network but not in an IP network. To convert the phones, they will need either an Analog Telephone Adapter or something similar.

Businesses with an existing telephony system can choose to upgrade because it will not cost much, but for establishments which do not have a telephony system yet, a full VoIP service using IP phones is more practical.
Businesses in Singapore are slowly switching to VoIP services such as the IP PBX telephone system and cloud VoIP not only because they cost less, but also for the network convergence and the consolidation of the media streams. Network convergence is the porting of the voice traffic to the company’s data network so that it becomes easier to maintain because the business needs only one network for everything. The hosted VoIP system also includes features and applications that are not possible with traditional telephony.

What is Cloud VoIP?

Cloud VoIP uses cloud technology to store and move data in the Internet instead of storing files in the hardware or computer. It has been around for decades, but has been popular ever since consumer-based cloud technology has become available. The name “cloud” represents the Internet, where the company can access data and other services using different devices if there is a connection.

There is a variation of cloud VoIP called cloud PBX, which includes all the features of a public branch exchange system without the need of PBX technology. PBX refers to the hardware that has to be installed and operated to route calls in the company. Cloud VoIP is ideal for small businesses that do not need several phones. Ask your VoIP vendor about cloud VoIP and all its features.

What is Hosted PBX?

The PBX phone system nowadays no longer need an operator to function or to have their own VoIP system within the company. It is cheaper to lease equipment and services from a host company through a system called hosted PBX. You don’t have to worry about upgrading, maintaining, and repairing all the hardware and software because most hosts that can do hosted PBX already provide a complete package.

What is a PBX Phone System?

For companies that have multiple phones and several employees, the PBX phone system is the most ideal setup. You might also hear the name IP PBX telephone system, which is a setup that allows employees to switch from VoIP to traditional phones and vice versa, and to switch from VoIP on local lines and the sharing of external phone lines.

Companies used to have the traditional PBX which has separate networks for data and voice communication even within the office. An IP PBX telephone system on the other hand, integrates both data and voice lines so that the employees can have access to the Internet, VoIP, and all traditional communication systems.

Taking Your Pet to a Groomer for the First Time

The first time you bathe your pet, you should expect that it’s not going to be a pleasant experience at all. That will also probably give you an idea about your pet’s first trip to a pet grooming services in Singapore.

 

How do you prepare your dog for its first experience with pet grooming? And what services can you expect at the groomer?

 

Find the Right Groomer

You need to find the right pet groomer for your pet in Singapore to make the experience pleasant. You can ask your veterinarian for advice or your friends for some feedback and experiences with the different groomers. The pet groomer should be experienced with the different dog breeds, coats, and grooming techniques. Once you find the right one for your dog, book an appointment with an allowance of a few days to prepare.

 

Take the Vaccination Records

If you want to groom pet, some groomers in Singapore will ask for a record of your pet’s latest shots, such as rabies vaccinations to protect your pet and the groomer from the virus. You should also tell your veterinarian about your plans, if you haven’t already, if it’s still a puppy. Most veterinarians will recommend that a puppy should be taken to a groomer within 16 weeks after its second round of puppy vaccinations.

 

The Right Age for Grooming

The dog should be taken to a pet grooming in Singapore service as young as possible after the second set of vaccinations have been completed. Puppies are less anxious around strangers than older dogs that have not been socialized with humans and other dogs. If you got a slightly older rescued dog, it’s important that the dog gets socialized first before taking it to a groomer to make it easier for it to adjust to strange noises and objects. Don’t forget to take some treats, too, while your dog is still getting used to pet grooming.

Train Your Dog

Socialization is important not just to prepare a dog for pet grooming, but also for its overall physical and psychological health. Dogs who are exposed to humans and other animals will find it easier to adapt to different situations, such as being handled by a stranger during pet grooming. A few days before the set appointment, train your dog to get used to being placed on a raised surface, such as a table, to lessen the fear.

 

Research About Proper Grooming

By now you have already learned how to bathe and brush your dog at home, but you should also research about the proper pet grooming methods based on the type of coat. Not all dog coats should be treated the same way, because some are more prone to matting and tangling than others. Not all dogs can also use the same shampoo, conditioner, and brush or comb.

Observe and Assist

During the pet grooming session, you should be present to restrain your dog from biting or running away. Assist the groomer while he/she is trying to settle down your dog, so that the next trip will be easier. Reward good behavior and firmly object against whining and complaints. If you have already trained your dog before the trip to the groomer, this part will be much easier.

 

Dog Grooming Services

A complete dog grooming service in Singapore should consist of the following:  washing, drying, brushing or combing, trimming, nail cleaning, butt cleaning (anal glands), ear inspection and cleaning, and dental cleaning.