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What’s Happening/What’s ELD Changes are coming for the transportation industry! Drivers will now be mandated to use an Electronic Log Device (ELD), which allows for automatic, accurate tracking of hours of service. By the end of 2019, drivers and motor carriers in the United States must use ELDs to remain compliant (see details on the FMCSA site here). Even if you’re a Canadian company, this will affect you if your drivers cross the border, and we can expect a similar rule to be introduced in Canada in the not so distant future. Why Your Company Should Adopt ELDs Many companies may be using paper logs, logging software, or automatic on-board recording devices (AOBRDs). This type of tracking is cumbersome and ineffective; drivers may underestimate their driving time, ignore their fatigue, or stretch their limits, causing risk to both the employee and employer. As well, ELDs will reduce paperwork and enhance productivity. While this regulation may seem to be an inconvenience for some organizations,...

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As business owners, we are constantly looking for learning resources on how to make our business a better place to work, run more efficiently, and be more profitable for all the stakeholders. Reading the latest NYTimes best selling business thought leaders’ books, Youtube videos, How- To conferences, and industry events. It’s hard to know where to spend your time and money. Although Cindy and I have done all of the above, albeit sporadically, depending on where we were in the growth of our company and our personal lives, one source for learning that we have found to be extremely valuable is our own industry event. Every year, CAM-X, The Canadian Association of Message Exchanges ( a name that we evolved to years ago, when we didn’t want to be called either an answering service or a call centre, which many are now proudly reverting back to ) holds a conference somewhere across our country, or occasionally in a southern locale. Keynotes, and industry...

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Before I joined Telelink Emergency Response Centre several years ago, I had never heard of Journey Management, and my idea of a Trip Risk Assessment was asking myself how many coffees I would need to get to where I was driving. In the sales profession, however, you are only as good as what you know. If you don’t understand your buyers’ struggles and business in a way that makes you valuable, you don’t deserve their attention. (Before reading any further, if you aren’t sure what Journey Management is - check out this quick blog. It is commonplace in the energy industry, and now starting to catch on in other industries. It not only saves lives, it makes complete fiscal sense which is where this post is going.) Over the last several years I have spent more time talking about Journey Management and driver safety than talking about my dogs - and I spend an obscene amount of time talking about my dogs. Most...

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I’m sure you must be thinking, “There is no way magic, mind reading and lone workers in the utility industry have anything in common.”. I know it sounds like an illusion, but there is indeed a common thread. A couple of weeks ago, I attended the Safety2017 conference in Denver put off by the American Society of Safety Engineers. (Sidenote, this year’s show was fantastic and busier than ever, so kudos to the organizers!) The keynote speaker for the luncheon on the last day was Vinh Glang, an entrepreneur and highly entertaining presenter who used magic as a metaphor to explain three essential truths to achieving success. As someone who has attended many conferences and sat through many keynotes staring at my empty plate willing dessert to arrive, I admit, I was skeptical of getting much value out of this one. I could not have been more wrong. Vinh’s presentation offered some valuable lessons that apply to success, and safety. His explanation of...

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As a marketing consultant, I get to peek inside many organizations to see first-hand its inner most workings. During my time at Telelink, it has become abundantly clear to me that this is an organization that truly lives and breathes its core values. Paramount of which is a desire to “make a difference”. One of the many ways this idea is expressed is through the act of giving. As Sydney Ryan, Telelink’s Co-CEO noted “Many of Telelink’s charity initiatives originate from the staff finding out about a great cause and asking if, together, we can help. It has been in Telelink’s blood from its earliest days to help out where it can. It naturally grew to become big part of our corporate culture. It gives me such pride to see the staff not just believe in this but also act upon it.” Charity Champions Two of Telelink’s many charity champions are Stephanie Donovan and Jillian Spurgeon. Both are quick to point out that...

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Day-to-day decisions for many companies can monopolize the energy of its key decision makers. Carving out the time to consider your higher level strategic view that could fundamentally impact the direction of a business takes a strict discipline and a strong determination. However, when this is accomplished, the rewards and long-term benefits make the effort so worthwhile. Take for instance the critical decision of whether or not to outsource your call center or call answering requirements. Here are top 4 reasons why you might consider outsourcing: 1. Cost savings: Outsourcing to vendors that specialize in a given function create efficiencies. It also reduces or, in some cases, eliminates the need to create and maintain the IT infrastructure needed to perform, manage and track these activities. That alone is enough for many to make outsourcing a priority. 2. Reducing staffing requirements: This is of particular importance for companies that experience demand fluctuations where having to increase or decrease staff (or worst, hold on to...

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Today a municipality must fulfil a number of responsibilities in order to give its residents the best possible quality of life. From coordinating everything from snow clearing to the repair of street lights, municipalities have a never-ending list of things to do, often on a tight budget. Communicating with, and responding to citizens inquiries should be at the top of the list. There are many reasons that municipalities get calls after hours, even under optimal conditions. These may range from critical emergencies, such as water main breaks and flooding or animal control issues, to the more routine, such as questions about garbage and recycling collection. How do you ensure that emergencies are dealt with immediately, but routine messages are dealt with but with a less sense of urgency? What may be surprising is that many municipalities, regardless of their size, are not equipped to best support a high volume of calls. Often, most calls end up being fielded by a single person, sometimes...

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