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How to Write A Recommendation Letter


Write a letter of recommendation for ex-employees

Need to write a letter of recommendation for a former employee? Try these sample character reference templates.

When to Write a Letter of Reference

If you’re forced to lay off a good worker, you might want to soften the blow with an offer of a recommendation letter, to help him get a new job. After you write the letter of dismissal, compose a letter of reference as well. Include information about the length of employment as well as special talents or strengths provided by the employee. Is he or she always on time? Positive? A great team player? Innovative and energetic? Include this information in the letter, and improve his or her chances of getting a new job.

Professional Character Reference Letter Template


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Fax Cover Sheet Templates


Use a Fax Cover Letter for Privacy

Looking for a collection of free fax cover letter templates? Look no further. These sample cover sheets are appropriate for business or personal fax communications.


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Small Business Marketing Tip of the Day: Be Consistent!


Use Your Small Business Marketing Plan to Maintain Sales

If your small business is doing well, and profits are high, you may be tempted to let your marketing efforts slide, but don’t do it! A consistent marketing plan will ensure that your business continues to prosper instead of experiencing unnerving highs and lows.

Small Business Marketing Plans

Whether your plan includes direct-mail, radio or print ads, a website, a newsletter, pretty tri-fold brochures or even just business cards to pass around town, make sure you are consistent with your efforts. Create a marketing plan each year, with monthly goals, and stick to it.

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How to Format a Business Letter: Free Templates

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Need help formatting a business letter?

Need help formatting a business letter? Here’s a quick and easy guide, and templates to make it even more simple.

Quick Formatting Guide

The most common format for a business letter is the left-justified block format. In this format, you simply line up all of the text on the left hand side of the page. Don’t indent, tab or center any text. The information you need to include is:

  • Your address
  • The date
  • Recipient’s address
  • Salutation
  • Body
  • Closing
  • Signature Block

Business Correspondence Templates

Don’t want to mess with the formatting? Just follow a simple business letter template with a guide to explain what information goes in each area.

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Writing an Executive Summary


Write a Stellar Executive Summary to Close the Deal

If you’re done with the rest of your business plan, but stuck on the executive summary, you’re not alone. Writing your executive summary can be the most challenging part of the entire plan, but don’t worry – these tips will save the day.


Executive Summary Tips

Follow these simple tips while you’re writing the summary of your business plan.

  • Remember the purpose of the summary: to get the attention of the decision-makers, and impress them enough to want to finance your venture.
  • Don’t be humble: brag about your qualifications. The bank needs to know why you’re the best person to open a new business.
  • Write a summary outline before you start. It’s easier to fill-in-the-blanks than to just sit down and try to write it all out from scratch.
  • Keep your business plan handy, and refer back to the facts and figures often.
  • Stay focused: your summary should basically be a condensed version of the business plan, so don’t go off on a tangent.

Whether you use a business plan template or write it off-the-cuff, make sure your executive summary is professional, attention-grabbing and clear.


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Business Backups: Cloud Storage vs. Local Storage


Should you choose backup media or cloud storage?

If you don’t want your business to crash and burn in the event of a disaster, you need to create a backup plan. You’ve probably heard a lot about “cloud storage” but should you trust your entire company’s financial records to the Internet?

What is the Cloud?

When people talk about the cloud, they’re just referring to the Internet. When you store information on the Internet, it’s not actually floating around in a cloud – it’s actually stored on someone’s servers. Most companies that provide cloud storage services offer robust security, to prevent hacking, and redundancy, to prevent data loss due to equipment loss at the storage facility. On the other hand, you never know… A sophisticated virus or a catastrophic power failure could result in the complete loss of your data.

Better Safe Than Sorry:

When choosing a method of backup, why not try both? An automatic online backup is a great way to keep your data safe, but augment it with monthly local backups, stored in an offsite location, and your data is irrevocably safe.

Need to choose between a paid Internet backup service and a free cloud backup? Don’t forget to do your research!

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Computers and Expense Reporting


Expense Reporting Software

Think you can get by with paper copies of expense reports forever? Wrong. Paper has its place, but eventually you’ll need to upgrade.

Expense Reporting Software vs. Online Programs

Most expense report software packages are pricey – some charge up-front fees, while others charge on a month-to-month basis, but there’s always a charge. Quickbooks, however, offers a free accounting program for small businesses. There’s no software to install, just use the program and store your company invoices and reports in the cloud.

Whichever you choose, make sure that you know what you’re getting into, and make sure that the company has the level of support that you’ll need to get used to filing your reports with a new system.

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Consolidate Small Business Debt


If you’ve run up a considerable about of high-interest debt on company credit cards, or you’ve got several small business loans, consider applying for the Small Business Administration’s loan consolidation program. There are lots of benefits, and no real drawbacks, as long as your current debt is in good standing.

Get Money for Loans from the Government

Why consolidate your business debt?

You can realize a number of benefits by consolidating your company’s loans and other debt, including start-up loans, equipment financing and even business credit cards.

  • Lower interest
  • Lower payments
  • Reduced principal
  • Time saved

Keep this in mind:

If you’re going through the SBA, your loans must be in good standing. The U.S. government won’t back or guarantee a loan that’s used to pay off delinquent loans. Check with the Small Business Administration to find out if you qualify for the consolidation program today!

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Save Money with Free Printable Timesheets


Save your timesheets in a binder for continuity

Tired of shelling out cash for timecards that are just going to end up in a bundle in your storage closet? Why not print off some timesheet templates instead?

Free Timekeeping Templates

Print off several timesheets on a single page, and print your pages double-sided to save even more paper. Have your employees track one week on the first side, and the next week on the second side. Just update the hours in your pay journal or bookkeeping program on Friday, and return the sheet to your employee on Monday. Ready to get started? Here’s more info and a free timesheet template.

Small Business Administration: Rock Stars On Tour?


Don't Miss the SBA's Jobs Act Tour

The SBA, or small business administration, is a well-known organization that extends a welcome helping hand to small business owners on a local level. Nearly every town has an SBA office, with counselors ready and willing to help you out as you navigate the shark-filled waters of business ownership. So what’s the SBA Rock Star tour all about?

HR5279 AKA the Jobs Act

HR5279, also known as the Small Business Jobs Act, was signed into law in 2010 by President Obama. It has created new programs and changed laws, creating opportunities such as the STEP program for small businesses around the country.

What is the STEP program?

The State Trade and Export Promotion program (STEP) was created to encourage exports among small businesses. HR5279 authorizes the SBA to provide grant funds to states, for distribution to small businesses who need funding to begin or expand export operations.

Going to the SBA Jobs Tour

The SBA has put together a tour to go around the country, explaining the ins and outs of HR5279 and the STEP program. Check out the schedule here: SBA Jobs Tour.

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