How to Open an SIP Account

Systematic Investment Plan or SIP means a method of investing money in mutual funds.

In an SIP, one invests a fixed amount of money in a mutual fund every month. which is automatically deducted from one’s bank account. To know what amount of monthly SIP you need to invest to achieve a certain money goal, one can use SIP account calculator. A Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) calculator is an online financial mechanism that helps to calculate the potential returns on your SIP investments. The online SIP account calculator tells you how much money should be invested every month to for a target corpus.

A systematic investment plan (SIP) means a plan that gives investors the right to make regular, equal payments into a mutual fund of their choice.

To open an SIP account, the investor should hold an investment account with the fund house. She/he needs to complete KYC verification before operating the SIP account. Once the investor has completed the KYC verification, she/he can open her/his SIP account within the investment account by filling up the ‘Start/Initiate an SIP’ form.

Step 1: Collect necessary documents

The following documents are necessary for KYC registration: PAN card, address proof like driving license/bank statement/utility bill, a passport size photograph, and cheque for the bank details.

Step 2: Be KYC compliant

Any AMC website or RTA website which provides KYC facility can validate KYC. The investor also has to complete FATCA formalities by answering certain questions online.

Step 3: Register with the AMC website

After completing the KYC formalities from the website of the fund house (AMC), she/he should click on the ‘Register Now’ or a ‘New Investor’ tab provided on the website; the investor furnishes the PAN number, personal details, nominee details, bank details and answer few FATCA questions. Then a User Id and password is generated for transacting online.

Step 4: Scheme Plan and Investment Amount

The investor chooses the scheme along with the plan and option and decided the SIP amount. Investors can select either regular plans or direct plans and can go for either growth option, IDCW option.

If the investor is certain of the SIP amount that she/he is going to make, then he or she can fill up the investment amount in the given box without using the online SIP calculator.

Step 5: Payment Mode and Date

Once the investor has decided the kind of SIP investment, he/she has to selects date/s and pay the first SIP instalment. The investor decides on the mode of payment; the amount can be auto debited from the investor’s account, net banking or NEFT/ RTGS payment.

Step 6: Submit Transaction

After completing details online, it is submitted to the AMC. The AMC sends acknowledges via email and SMS.

The investor can login to his account to check the status of investments etc.

An active SIP account inculcates a sense of financial discipline over time as you are forced to invest a fixed sum at regular intervals.

Different Types of Debt Funds

Debt funds in mutual funds invest in fixed-income securities like treasury bills, corporate bonds, commercial papers, government securities, and many other money market instruments. The NAV or Net Asset Value of Debt Mutual Funds is inversely related to interest rate movement. Generally, when the interest rates rise, the prices of existing fixed income securities in your debt mutual fund portfolio fall and when interest rates drop, such prices increase.

Types of Debt Funds in India

Dynamic Bond Funds
Dynamic Bond Fund is a type of debt fund where the fund manager adjusts the portfolio as per the fluctuating interest rates. Dynamic bond funds have different average maturity periods as these funds take investment decisions based on interest rates and invest in instruments of longer and as well as shorter maturities.

Short Duration Debt Funds
These type of debt funds make investments in Debt & Money Market instruments such that the Macaulay duration of the portfolio is between 1 year – 3 years.. Conservative investors prefer these funds, as they are generally not influenced much by interest rate movements.

Liquid Funds
Liquid funds is a type of debt fund consisting of underlying debt instruments with a maturity of not more than 91 days. This makes them relatively less risky. Liquid funds can be an option to park investor’s surplus fund and can act as emergency funds.

Gilt Funds
These type of Debt funds make minimum investment in Gsecs- 80% of total assets (across maturity) and considered to have low credit risk. . The government rarely defaults on the loan taken in the form of debt instruments; gilt funds are perfect for risk-averse fixed-income investors.

Fixed Maturity Plans
These types of Debt funds also make investments in fixed income securities like corporate bonds and government securities. All FMPs have a fixed period for which your money will be locked-in. However, one can invest only during the initial offer period there after can be purchased or sold through stock exchange platform.

From an investor’s point of view, debt funds in India are regarded as relatively less volatile than equity mutual funds.. However, there are different types of risks associated with debt funds.

Credit Risk

Debt funds extend money to companies, banks, and the government. The possibility of loss because of a company defaulting on payment is called credit risk. Banks and the government have a safer credit profile than companies. Certain mutual funds hoping to generate higher returns lend to companies with low credit profiles, which leads to such events. Hence, one should examine the debt fund portfolio before investing.

Liquidity Risk

Certain securities have less liquidity as compared to others or there could be economic issues wherein the liquidity of debt securities decreases. In such cases, the mutual funds cannot sell these securities and repay investors. This is known as liquidity risk.

Interest Rate Risk

This is one of the most common risks involved in debt funds. Increasing interest rates lead to falling bond prices and vice versa. In a falling interest rate environment with rising bond prices, funds with the highest duration do well. If a fund manager, buys bonds with a long duration assuming interest rates will go down, but interest rates go up such a fund will yield low or negative returns. This is an interest rate risk.

To conclude, there are different types of risks associated with debt funds.

The investor should maintain debt funds in mutual funds as a part of the portfolio after evaluating the risks involved and your investment objective.

How to Select the Correct Debt Fund

Debt funds in mutual funds are a type of mutual fund that invests in debt securities such as corporate bonds, money market instruments, commercial paper, certificate of deposit, treasury bills and government securities.

Types of Debt Funds in India

Dynamic Bond Funds
Dynamic bond funds are a type of debt fund that invest across duration and have different average maturity periods as these funds take investment decisions based on interest rates and invest in instruments of longer as well as shorter maturities.

Short Duration Funds
These type of debt funds make investments in Debt & Money Market instruments such that the Macaulay duration of the portfolio is between 1 year – 3 years.

Liquid Funds
Liquid funds are a type of debt funds that invest in debt instruments with a maturity of not more than 91 days. This makes them relatively less risky. They are better alternatives to savings bank accounts as they provide similar liquidity with higher returns.

Gilt Funds
These type of debt funds make minimum investment in Gsecs- 80% of total assets (across maturity). Gilt funds are perfect for risk-averse fixed-income investors.

Fixed Maturity Plans
These funds also make investments in fixed income securities like corporate bonds and government securities. All FMPs have a fixed period for which your money will be locked-in. However, one can invest only during the initial offer period thereafter can be purchased or sold through stock exchange platform.

From an investor’s point of view, debt funds in India are regarded as relatively less volatile than equity funds. However, there are different types of risks associated with debt funds.

The following factors should be considered before investing in debt funds.

Types of Risk in Debt Funds
Debt funds run the risk of credit risk and interest rate risk. In case of credit risk, the fund manager may invest in securities with a poor or risky credit rating with a high probability of default on payment. In case of interest rate risk, the bond prices may fall due to an increase in the interest rates.

Cost
Debt fund managers levy a certain fee to manage the money called an expense ratio.

Investment horizon
If you have a short-term investment period of three months to one year, then investing in liquid funds is ideal. The Macaulay duration of underlying investments for short-term bond funds can be one year to three years. In case of investment across duration, dynamic bond funds would be appropriate. The longer the time plan, the better the returns.

Investment objective
Depending on your financial goals, different types of debt funds could serve your purpose. Investors can park a certain amount of funds in debt funds for liquidity.

Tax implications
Capital gains – both long term and short term from debt funds are taxable under the Income Tax Act 1961.

How Using a Recruitment Consultancy Benefits Job Seekers

Saving time and effort

Finding a new job is a time consuming business. When someone is already in full time employment, finding the time to regularly check for new opportunities can be problematic, to say the least. By discussing what roles and expectations a job seeker is looking for with a consultant the applicant can have a company checking their details against newly posted jobs. Their CV is kept on file, and their details are check against all new roles without them having to lift a finger.

Not all Jobs are visible

Because of the way recruitment consultants work not all vacancies are advertised. They are as likely to fill roles from their stored databases of CVs as they are to advertise a role. The only way to be considered for some of the best posts out there is to be on the consultants’ books and be approached for the position before the need to advertise arises. It’s also worth noting that work that is offered to applicants this way is much more likely to result in a job, than a post that has been advertised nationally and gained hundreds or even thousands of applications.

Why think local?

If you’re happy to relocate, or even work abroad, recruitment consultants open up a whole world of possibilities. Their expertise means that any possible need for permits can be explained in full and in some cases dealt completely with as part of their service. Applicants are likely to need to go to interview first, which can bring the risk of a lot of expense just to find out the role isn’t what was advertised, or that the company doesn’t suit. Because the consultant knows the role and workplace well they can save a wasted trip by discussing the company ethos, workplace and role before you set foot out of your door.

Expert advice

The consultancy wants you to succeed; they get paid if you get hired. And this means that they will go out of their way to make sure you are presented in the best possible light. They will have your CV before it gets forwarded to their clients, and can advise you on how best to tailor it to the needs of the opportunity, what areas in it need highlighting, and what can be edited out. They can also advise you on how to best deal with interviews, and what areas of your past experience are most relevant to their clients. In short they can provide you with insider knowledge that someone dealing with the company direct is unlikely to know.

Applying for Jobs Through a Recruitment Consultancy

If you are looking for a new job, it can be difficult to avoid dealing with a recruitment consultancy. In many fields, a significant number of vacancies recruit only through these professional consultants. It stands to reason that if you are looking for work then you need to know the best way to deal with a recruitment agent to get the job you want.

Finding a Suitable Advert

Many job adverts still appear in newspapers. Unless the job is particularly exclusive, most adverts will be in the local newspaper. Another great source of job adverts is internet recruitment sites. The sites often contain a large number of positions, but you can refine your job search by various fields, such as location, salary and skills.

Once you find a suitable advert, you will need to submit your application. Normally this will be a CV and application letter. The consultant will usually contact you to discuss your skills and experience and further details of the job role. This is effectively a telephone interview and the agent will pass your details onto the business if you appear to be suitable for the post.

Sometimes the consultant will ask you to amend your CV to highlight certain skills or experience that will help you get the role. If this happens, then try to follow their advice – it might be the difference between getting the interview and going on the reject pile.

The Waiting Game

The recruitment consultancy will typically collect a number of CVs and select the most suitable to pass on. The recruiting manager at the business will normally choose to arrange an interview with some of the candidates. If you are successful then the agent will contact you to arrange the interview.

Sometimes the business might insist that candidates take a test or go through an interview with the consultant first. The consultant will arrange this with you.

The Interview

When you attend the interview, wear your best clothes and arrive early. This will help you to feel confident for the interview. Remember to take your time and try to answer questions honestly and build a rapport with the interviewer.

Afterward

You might need to wait a little while after the interview while the recruiter decides which candidate to employ. Even if you are unsuccessful, then you might not find out until the chosen candidate has accepted the job offer.

It is always a good idea to get feedback from the recruitment consultant about the interview. This will help you to improve your performance in your next interview.

Many employers now use a recruitment consultancy to hire new employees. If you are applying for a position then it helps to be aware of how they work and how they can help you get that perfect job. Remember that they are paid by the business when a role is filled, so it is in their interests to help the right candidate get the job. You just have to ensure that you are that candidate.

Take Advantage of a Recruitment Consultancy

Many large companies now use the services of a recruitment consultancy to help them to fill a vacancy with the perfect new employee. These experts take on the responsibility for every step of the recruitment process and could include:

• Advertising the job

• Vetting CVs

• Arranging candidate interviews and tests

• Negotiating with successful employees

This takes the emphasis for the recruitment process away from the manager that needs to fill the vacancy and allows them to continue with their daily work. Obviously the consultant will liaise with the recruiting manager at every step of the process to ensure that only the most suitable candidates make it to the interview stage.

Advertising

Traditionally job adverts appear in the local newspaper or job centre, but this is often more likely to be an online recruitment website now. Potential candidates browse adverts on these websites regularly and can apply for an interesting position within a few clicks.

To ensure that the most suitable candidates apply, the advert should contain an accurate and detailed job description along with a list of any necessary skills or experience and the salary expectations. Having all of these details will help to weed out potential applicants who will want too much salary or do not have the necessary skills.

Vetting CVs

In the current economic climate, it is possible for a job advert to gather many applications. This is one area where a good recruitment consultancy can save a business a significant amount of time and money. The consultant will read through the CVs as they arrive and will often speak to any suitable candidates that meet the specification. The consultant will pass any applicants that appear suitable to the recruiting manager for review.

Arranging Interview

Once the manager has picked which candidates to interview, the recruiter will arrange these with the candidates. Depending on the position, the recruiter might even perform the interviews on behalf of the employer. This could be a phone interview or a traditional face-to-face interview. Some employers insist that candidates take tests during the interview stage, and the consultancy can arrange and administer these tests.

Negotiating with Candidates

When the successful candidate receives a job offer then the recruitment consultancy will usually work as an intermediary for both parties. This might include:

• Salary

• Holidays

• Start Date

Once the new employee starts work, the business will receive an invoice for their services. Often the bill will be a percentage of the salary of the new recruit, but they have the skills and experience to save the business a lot of time and money during recruitment.

Delve Into the Complicated World of IPTV – Hire IPTV Consulting Firms

IPTV is defined as Internet Protocol television which is a system, where services for digital television are delivered through broadband IP link with the use of data communications. There are established organizations offering IPTV consulting to assist vendors and operators to safely enter the complex world of IPTV. They offer services that can help reduce complexity and uncertainty and also assist in managing financial and operational risks that are often associated in this sector. Not only do they reduce risks, but they also help operators to create and validate business options and market strategies.

Technology is evolving in a rapid pace, and this makes it important for operators to keep up with these changes. IPTV focuses on digital technology that currently replaces traditional forms of transmission of TV that includes cables and satellites and even radio broadcasting. Hiring an IPTV consulting firm to help operators and vendors can put an organization several steps ahead of their competitors as they are assisted and educated in the area of digital technology.

These consultants are experts who can offer high quality services to implement new technology. Below are some of the benefits:-

Most of the IPTV consulting firms provide services that include formulation of entry criteria in the IPTV market.
They also help to identify IPTV technology options which are best of the breed.
These companies also create IPTV architecture design and perform integration of the IPTV system. Performing IPTV testing is also included in their services and they also assist clients in testing strategies.
You can expect complete planning, execution and reporting developments.
You also get assisted in selecting and managing IPTV vendors and get complete documentation for IPTV platforms.
Services provided by IPTV consulting firms can be listed in four major categories:

Planning – They help a company to strategize and develop business cases. They also assist in managing the project and implementing plans as well.
Technical services – Their technical services mainly focus on providing technology analysis, integration of systems, and architecture designs.
Operations – When it comes to assisting clients in their operations and business, they provide operational gap assessments and service monitoring.
Business assistance – Their services also oversee contract negotiations and content acquisition.
With services from IPTV consulting firms, companies will be enlightened in the complicated world of digital technology and can use this advantage to become the leader in this business. They could be a blessing to those organization, who are planning to enter in this sector.

Why Business Consulting Is So Important

There are talented and learned people who run and work in consulting firms who make it their business to help others understand what they need to do to make better profits. This is especially true nowadays since there are so many means of conducting a business and the internet even lets us sell our products online to a global market!

Both well-established and new businesses just starting out have a lot to learn from consulting firms. They may know much about their own businesses and how to run them, but they need to know a lot more about the other aspects of the market in order to become completely successful. A fresh look/start from a third party without emotions tied into the business is always beneficial.

Learning new ways of marketing your product and selling it to your customers and advertising it to gain more customers is important for all business people. Consulting agencies analyze the market and devise the kind of plans that will help with growth, especially with the fierce competition nowadays. It may even be necessary to change or add in new goals to make the business more efficient.

There are many ways that a business consultant can help you learn more. First of all, they can help you find out what market you are in and who you need to sell to, in other words, who your target market is. They can help survey potential customers and find out what they want and what they would buy, so that you can find a way to gain the most number of customers for your businesses.

It is also important for your business itself to be analyzed well. Your strengths and weaknesses need to be known so that your strengths can be improved and your weaknesses can be turned into strengths because no one is perfect. Also, you need to know what opportunities you have as a business owner, and which ones would be the best to take advantage of to further the business as a whole.

Your brand needs to be well known so that your potential customers will find out more about you and figure out whether or not to do business with you. In order to do this, you need to market well and market in places that potential and current customers and clients would be able to see the advertisements. You can market online as well as in your area to broaden your customers globally!

Even the best businesses sometimes need a consult in order to make them better and adapt with the times. A corporation that does not adapt will not be able to sell to the modern market, no matter how good their product is. So if you have a business, old or new, it is a good idea to find a business consulting firm you trust.

How to Become an Expert Consultant

So the basic question is how to build that trust and achieve that standing? Here are a few tips to achieve that trust:

1. The very first and key step is to build contacts in your field of expertise or niche. You should have references and contacts. The easiest way to do this is to join the relevant group in the Chamber of Commerce in your area, use Web 2.0 by joining LinkedIn, Twitter, and forums online. Participate in discussions and get to know people in your field.

2. Do some jobs for free for these new friends of yours, or charge a nominal fee. This will go a long way. Go online and find someone who needs some service in your area of expertise. Offer it for free and ensure that you do a good job. Once the job is done, ask for a testimonial and also ask for references.

3. You should have a website. Do not get a free website but get a domain and get your website hosted properly. On your website, list your services, the price and the terms clearly. Put the testimonials you have got on the website. Of course offer incentives like a free initial analysis of what the person needs and how your service could help them.

4. Building a client base is all about building relationships. Network with prospective clients and fellow consultants all the time. In fact this should be an ongoing process. Collect more email addresses every day. Do people some free service whenever you can. Exchange favors. If you feel that someone else in your field can do a job better than you can, refer them to your client. These favors put you on a better footing as time goes by.

5. After you have done a job for a client, follow the person up and ask for a feedback. If they were happy and satisfied, ask for a testimonial. If they were not happy, then offer them some extra service or refund them a bit of the fee. This will go a long way in assuaging the unhappiness and it will help build your reputation.

6. Go online and search for your name. Do this often because if people are talking about you and your services, you need to know. Satisfied customers are likely to recommend you to other people, and dissatisfied ones will make you lose business. If someone has aired a grouse on the net, go all out to appease the person.

7. Advertise, use classified ads, Craigslist and other resources like Twitter etc to bring you business. If you have a strong online presence, it helps your reputation and brings you more work.

If you take these steps consistently, you will build your reputation up in no time at all as an expert consultant.

A Consultant’s Life in 2009 and Beyond

A consultant can be best defined as one who chooses not to be an employee; one who is willing to depend upon his or her own talents, abilities, and expertise for continued existence; one who is a risk taker – knowing that there is no weekly, semi-monthly, or monthly pay checks; one who may seem to be a little crazy and weird to his peers, but one is willing to try to make a difference in the world.

In that you work for yourself, you have to organize your own day. I have used Anytime Organizer for the past several years. I organize my day around set blocks of time and types of work and Anytime Organizer has proved to be great software for help in doing so. For example, you may break your day down into one hour segments or thirty minute segments depending on the type of work and how much time may be needed to complete that type of work. Some consulting work might require more time to be spent on the phone. Consequently, you may allow an hour for phone calls and follow-up to phone calls, while you may allow just thirty minutes for reviewing reports, and an hour for billing. The day and times allocated to each type of work may vary depending upon the type of consulting work that you do. Some type of work may be required each day, while some might just be required just once a week. The main thing is that over time it become clear as to how much time you need to allocate to the specific type of work each week and what adjustment you need to make

A typical day in a consultant’s life includes:

o making phone calls,
o checking e-mails,
o visiting clients,
o reviewing reports,
o writing reports,
o billing clients,
o going to meetings,
o and writing letters.

And, of course, until you become well established, you have to consistently obtain work which includes prospecting, asking for referrals, dealing with no answers, and marketing. Getting paid for your work includes billing, following up on billings, and negotiating rates.

Being a consultant means willing to accept extended periods of working alone while balancing that need with time to have fun with others. It also means dealing with the challenge of finding those times and making those times meaningful.

Over time you want to develop the reputation as one who puts the client first; one is willing to take the extra step; one who is sincerely committed to the idea of adding value to what you do; and one who is willing to make a commitment to becoming an expert in your chosen field.