Monthly Archives: January 2015

Project Portfolio Management

What You Need to Know About Project Portfolio Management

Project Portfolio ManagementProject Portfolio Management (PPM) involves prioritizing IT projects based on their benefits, costs, and use of resources to accomplish different business goals. This strategic prioritization method analyzes and manages projects to help identify in which order they’ll be most productive. As such, they can monitor the progress from concept planning to completion.

How Does PPM Work?

Analyzing an IT project usually depends on their nature, cost, resource consumption, expected benefits, and relationship to other priorities in the organization’s range of projects. In most cases, these organizations use PPM software to help in the decision-making process. They use it to promote visibility, measurement, standardization, and process improvement.

It’s important for PPM users to have a strong IT governance structure. Apart from focusing on the progress, they need to undergo a Primavera risk analysis training to understand the risks associated with managing their project portfolios through hosted services. As such, they’ll have an idea how to solve potential problems and boost the chances of success.

How to Choose PPM Software

Before choosing a PPM software system, it’s advisable to use a criteria based on your needs and organizational objectives. The reliable PPM software allows you, along with your managers and executives, to review your IT projects properly. As such, you can optimize the results of your project portfolio better.

If you don’t have a single idea, you should start small and use its features one at a time. PPM is diverse, so if you don’t want to be overwhelmed, start with the simplest one. Here are some of the features of PPM you can choose from:

– Cost and Benefits Measurement
– Key Project Data Communication
– Progress Report
– Capacity and Resource Planning
– Benefits and Cost Tracking
– Project Evaluation Processing

Project portfolio management is helpful in making important business decisions for IT projects. If you don’t want to be lost while using it, you should get a reliable one and understand its risks.

Dark Wood Flooring

Surprise, Surprise: 4 Ways to Brighten Home with Dark Wood Flooring

Dark Wood FlooringThere is something about dark wooden floors that just scream chic and sophisticated. Maybe it is the mystery behind the darkness or the romantic and dramatic feeling the finish evokes—whatever it is, everyone, including interior designers, admires dark wood floors.

Some shy away from it, thinking that it only makes the room feel dark. On the contrary, however, dark wood can actually make your dull home look and feel brighter—as long as you pair it with the right colours and materials.

Light Ceilings, Walls, and Furniture

Interior designers and homeowners everywhere like to set a contrast by pairing their dark floors with brighter colours on the ceiling, walls, and furniture. This keeps the eyes focused on the brighter finishes while adding a bit of richness.

The dark flooring will make the interiors look brighter, too, while light neutral colours, such as white, grey, and beige on your furniture, walls, and ceilings will naturally balance the room.

Marble, Bronze, and Wood

Dark wood floors can look especially chic when you use it in the kitchen. According to ElleDecor.com and ChelseaFlooring.com.au, the key to keeping the overall effect light and elegant is to balance the darkness of the flooring with lighter (preferably white) cabinetry and walls, light wood accents, and warm bronze metals.

A Big Splash of Colour

A splash of colour in a bold, rich, and pigmented shade will work well with dark wood floors. Dress your floor with a patterned red rug, and you’ll get a cosy and welcoming feel. Pairing it up with a celery green-coloured rug or carpet, on the other hand, will create a brighter and more airy feel. The key here is to balance the big splash of colour with other elements in the room.

Dark Furniture Legs

You don’t always need contrast whenever you’re dealing with dark floors. Matching the furniture legs to the dark hues below will also help make the space feel elegant and well put together. Do this, however, with extreme caution. Keep everything else at a lighter colour to keep the space from feeling and looking heavy.

With these ideas, don’t shy away from dark flooring—they can upgrade and beautify your interiors more than you know.

old brick roof

Service is the Key: How to Steer Away From Common Roof Problems

old brick roofMany problems and issues plague households regarding their roofs. Some may be obvious, some can be unforeseen, and others can lead to something catastrophic. From leaks and punctures, to ponding water, to shrinking and blistering, these various problems and issues lead back to a single solution that can save you and your household from expensive repairs.

Understanding the causes of these problems is the key; one must discover the root of all causes. And most of the time, it leads back to poor workmanship and service. If the solution was delivered flawlessly, it will last a long time. If it isn’t, it will require more repairs.

Inefficient workmanship

Imagine a roof that already has a problem. Instead of solving it, the solution caused another problem. So now you have two problems to think about. It requires excellent workmanship to efficiently fix a gaping problem.

If the service is obviously lacking in standard and is unsatisfactory, it will not only complicate the current issue, but will also decrease a roof’s life expectancy. Faulty installation and lack of basic knowledge on roofing systems is like giving the universe permission to drop an asteroid over your house.

Lack of maintenance

Not only is the repair important, maintenance is even more crucial. It is too easy to neglect the roof since we spend most of our time living indoors and we hardly notice the state of our roof. Also because maintenance requires continuous financial splurging.

For the contractors at Liberty Roofing, quality can be achieved at a low-cost. Good contractors will offer full-service roofing repairs in either commercial or residential situations. Other than the outstanding workmanship, they should also guarantee long-term business relationships.

The key to a happy home is love and a lot of other abstract concepts. More concretely, the feeling of security and protection inspire happiness and love, an atmosphere one can achieve with a well-maintained and long-lasting roof.

internet problems

The 3 Most Common Online Crimes Faced by Businesses Today

Do you know how secure your business is online?

Internet crimes are serious issues that no one can afford to ignore. Not only are they increasing, but they are also making companies suffer from costly issues.

The Web is a great place to socialize, stay connected with clients, market products or services, be up-to-date with trends, and more. But, using it means you have to embrace its dark side.  Every year, cyber crimes cost businesses thousands or even millions of dollars, though only a few offenses make headlines.

Don’t be a victim; know the top four online crimes today, and determine what you can do to protect your business and your reputation.

Blackmailinternet problems

Using the Internet to threaten someone to provide details of credit cards and bank accounts is a crime. The intention of blackmail is to cause damage to a person, be it exposing embarrassing information or stealing financial details. Your best line of defense is to educate yourself about prevention measures.

Massive Hacking

If you think someone has accessed your private credentials or business assets without your authorization, a reputable lawyer who is knowledgeable about technology and criminal law can be of great help.

As DNTrialLaw.com puts it: “Computers and Internet technology have become a part of almost all aspects of our lives. The criminal justice system has taken notice and individuals are increasingly charged with crimes related to the use of computer networks and the Internet. People may face a variety of charges under state and federal law related to the use and transmission of information over computer networks.”

Identity Theft

The intention of hackers is simple: access personal information of business owners and use it for their own benefit. Whether they use the data to publish inappropriate content or make a lot of money, identity theft can taint your reputation.

There are some things you can’t control, but considering the risks can go a long way.

kids

When Kids Lose Baby Teeth: What to Do When it Happens

kidsLosing baby teeth is one of the biggest signs that your little one just isn’t so little anymore. As far as its significance goes, losing milk teeth ranks right up there beside learning how to ride a bike, how to tie shoelaces, or even how to read.

When it Happens

Although the general age at which babies lose teeth is at 5-6 years, some can start as early as 4 years of age. This is perhaps the best age to develop the habit of regular dental visits in them. Noted pediatric dentists from Lone Tree agree that taking your child to the dentist regularly at an early age can inhibit preconceived notions of fear that most kids associate with a dentist’s office.

The period of losing baby teeth typically lasts about 6 years with varying intervals between tooth to tooth.

What to Expect

Baby teeth fall out simply to make way for permanent teeth. While the process is normally a painless one, children may experience discomfort on a case to case basis. This is often due to baby teeth cutting into the edge of your child’s gums.

Remember that you do not need to intervene and extract the teeth yourself. They will often fall out on their own, usually while eating or even at the most unexpected moments.

What to Do

Often, your child may complain because of difficulty in biting or chewing with loose or missing teeth. It is, however, important that they maintain a healthy diet. While you can administer acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or even topical analgesics to help ease the discomfort, it is still always better to take your child to the dentist as soon as possible.

When the tooth fairy comes to visit your young one, it represents a milestone in your child’s life. Give your child extra care and attention through the process, and stick to dental appointments.

comforting crying girl

Saying Goodbye: The Tears, Plans, and Conversations

comforting crying girlNothing seems to shake the strong bond and love we have for our family than a diagnosis of terminal illness. It’s a terrifying thought, because deep inside, we know it could happen to us anytime.

We pause and offer heartfelt messages when a friend or relative is stricken, our saddened hearts breaking into pieces and our frightened minds turn numb. Then we go asking, am I next?

After some time, you begin to accept you or your loved one’s fate and plans begin to take shape. Then comes the hard part: breaking the news and making preparations for the future.

Setting Boundaries

You may want to tell your immediate family, everyone, or just someone. The important thing to remember is it’s your choice. Do whatever you want. Keep to yourself or tell everyone close to you.

Don’t be pressured to talk when you don’t want to, or when you’re not ready to go into the details of your condition. If you’re not comfortable talking about your illness, and that’s fine.

Decisions will be Made

You may want to wait until the last minute to tell your friends. You may want to wait until you’ve accepted your diagnosis before making any plans. You may want to tell your loved ones about it face-to-face, or over the phone. You may want to make funeral arrangements yourself, or have your loved ones do it for you. Do what you want.

Having ‘The Talk’

We’re not suggesting sticking to a script, but you may want to tailor your talk depending on who’s listening. Kids and adults handle grief and emotional stress differently.

Your loved ones, especially your grown children, will want to know your plans. If you can’t even stomach the thought of making your loved ones go through the sorrow of preparing your funeral, have somebody else do it. LindquistMortuary.com says pre-planning your funeral arrangements, no matter how difficult it may seem, provides peace of mind, not just for you, but the whole family.

Life When Death is Near

The essence of life when you see the end is having no boundaries and limits. For once in your life, do what you want. Don’t feel obligated or guilty. Your only goal should be to embrace life and family, and live every second to the fullest. There will be regrets, but you don’t have to bother with them for long.

When facing the final curtain, say it clear, state your case of which you’re certain—to paraphrase Frank Sinatra. Live a life that’s full, and above all, do it your way.

fair weather in hong kong

Be Financially Smart: 4 Money Moves for Expats Moving to Hong Kong

fair weather in hong kongCan you afford to ignore financial advice? Whether you are an entrepreneur, a high net worth individual or a young professional, considering financial matters is a must when moving to Hong Kong. If you are part of the growing number of people wanting to live in the country, you need to learn how to make the most of your overseas experience. And one way to do that is to keep track of your finances.

Create a Checklist

Are you on track of your financial goals? You can identify your must-haves if you create a detailed checklist. It allows you to stick to your budget and know priorities.

Open a Savings Account

Never underestimate the importance of opening a bank account. Once you reach Hong Kong, start saving immediately. You need to have funds to cover your food, clothing and other expenses. If possible, save money for a brand new or used car and a house.

Get the Right Health Coverage

Getting hospitalised for a serious injury or illness can be costly, no matter where country you are. Fortunately, the right health insurance can reduce those expenses. You cannot foresee an accident or health problem, so you need to prepare for the unexpected.

There are many options for different kinds of health coverage, so you need to choose the one with greater flexibility. People in the industry explains that individual medical insurance plans allow you to get dental insurance, vaccinations, preventative medicine, alternative therapies and complimentary medicine, emergency evacuation and outpatient insurance coverage.

Don’t Overbuy

Hong Kong is best known for its great food, exciting nightlife, stunning scenery, wonderful attractions and world-class hotels. But, no matter how much you want to explore what the country has to offer immediately, you need to resist the urge. You have several years to visit different places and eat local food, so don’t overbuy.

Your first move overseas can be both exciting and daunting. Avoid the financial burden by keeping these simple tips in mind.

Sleeping Mattress

A Comparison Study Between Memory Foam and Latex Mattresses

Sleeping MattressGetting a good night’s sleep is vital for each one of us.  A good mattress will help you get that much needed rest. To buy a new mattress and torn picking between a natural latex mattress and memory foam, which one would you choose?

Sleepwarehouse.com offers a closer look at each one so that you can make a decision.

Memory Foam

Among the different types of mattresses, memory foam onesis gathering steam with customers. This mattress has several layers of foam in differing densities. These layers contour themselves to the body and adjust to weight and temperature.

Most people equate memory foam mattresses for relieving pressure on different parts of the body. Due to its design, the foam absorbs movement, preventing the disruption of the other person on the bed.

On the downside, since it reacts to a body’s temperature, some people feel too hot from the mattress, which requires proper air conditioning. Memory foam mattresses consist fully of synthetic materials, as well.

Latex

Latex mattresses, on the other hand, consist either of natural or synthetic rubber, while others combine both. A combined natural-synthetic latex mattress provides good support to the body, the same as the memory foam. The main difference is that latex bounces back naturally.

Many people may not appreciate an overly firm mattress. Take note though that it is hard to find an entirely natural latex mattress – these are very expensive. Almost all of the latex mattresses are a mix of natural and synthetic materials. A well-made latex mattress can last up to 30 years.

More consumers are now environmentally aware. Given that there are many types of mattresses on the market, buy the one that you feel comfortable with. Remember, you spend a third of your life sleeping and you should not settle for quality of the goods you purchase.

learning basic math

Catching Children’s Attention Using Teaching Resources

learning basic mathGetting the attention of small children and retaining it for an extended period is an uphill task for the teachers and parents. The reason is simple: they easily get bored, especially if they do not find the teachers or their methods interesting.

Teaching important subjects and languages to little children can become very difficult, so teachers resort to several ways to impart their lessons where children can retain these things well.

R.I.C. Publications discusses such methods and tools.

Utilising the Digital Wave

Thankfully, numerous Australian teaching resources and tools are available today, which can make the teaching and learning process more effective. Standard textbooks and classroom environs bore children quickly due to the plethora of digital entertainment such as TVs, gaming consoles, smartphones and tablets they could use. These educational tools take advantage of these digital media to deliver their lessons.

Using New Methods

Teachers should aim at making the classroom lessons more exciting and motivating. They can use role-playing while teaching languages in prose or poetry. They can teach science by demonstrating the experiments or at least by showing relevant models of animals, earth, planets, etc.

While the teacher’s personal ability plays a major role, these tools can help make the lessons more stimulating. They can even use the computer to demonstrate a whole range of things, such as maps, charts and science experiments.

Appropriate Tools

A number of tools exist on all topics and subjects. The teachers should pick the right ones suited for the age and ability levels of the students. A sundry of resources teach subjects like mathematics, environmental sciences and geography.

For very young children, such as toddlers, it is best to pick their favourite things, such as food items or animals, and use them to teach lessons. But, for older children, teachers can research online, and find appropriate tools suitable and use them in their classrooms.

These tools aim at bringing a lot of variety and functionality to the teaching and learning environment. The normal mode of listening in a group at a classroom is obsolete; a new form of utilising available teaching resources is now a necessity.

steel railings

Installation of Stainless Steel Railings

steel railingsHandrails are very popular in both the interiors and exteriors of buildings. There are many different designs and styles available in varying materials. They are strong and durable, as is their purpose. They are also simple to maintain.

Installing one is normally the job of a professional, but if you need to install one in a hurry, Active Metal compiled this guide to help you.

Versatile Material

Stainless steel is an alloy, and a versatile material that can combine with any material of your choice. They can also blend with any style, décor and architecture. There are many finishes available, although you can leave them in their natural state if you wish. You can also customise the rails to suit your requirement in terms of styling, shaping and sizing.

Installing Them Safely

Installing them safely is important. You have to adhere to all safety regulations prescribed before you begin the work. A good thing to note is that if their shape and cut as per specifications, then installing them will be much smoother. You will need proper tools such as all kinds of wrenches, drilling templates, drill bit, and so on.

You have three posts to install them onto. One is a corner post when there is a change in the direction, end posts at the starting or ending point, and a mid-post to support the rails and cable. Follow the requirements while installing the posts and decide on the cable spacing.

Calculate the cable requirements for your project accurately by measuring the top of the deck and considering the cable spacing you would use.

A Job for Professionals

For people who want to replace existing handrails or installing for the first time, consult the experts and take their help. They can help you pick one that will suit your home, your personal preferences and lifestyle. They can help you find the right style and pattern to suit your preferences and budget.

Remember that if the project is big or complicated – especially if you have a big home – calling the professionals is well worth it.