Latest Articles

How to communicate effectively with investors

Fundraising for your business is rarely a walk in the park. It’s a tough process, regardless of the industry you’re in, it can take up vast amounts of time, and more often than not, ends in failure. Communicating effectively with investors will really boost your chances of success, so we asked funding expert, John Auckland, […]

What is cyber insurance & how can it protect my business?

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance cyber security is already on your radar. That’s a good place to have it, because cybercrime is relentlessly on the up. Data breaches, phishing scams and ransomware attacks fill the digital headlines. All of which begs the question: How do you protect your business from hackers and […]

How to set up a small business IT network

Having a data network has become a requirement for all modern businesses, regardless of size. An IT network gives your workforce access to the internet and other services like VoIP, allowing employees to communicate and share files with clients, customers and each other.

How to set up an Airbnb business – the basics

Airbnb’s revolutionary business model — which ranked the home-sharing company third in 2018’s Disruptor 50 list — has now dominated a total of 191 countries. And with its more than 5 million listings, 300 million customer reservations, and a value of $31 billion, it’s not surprising that a lot of would-be short term let landlords […]

From concept to creation: The 10 steps of product design

Devising new products and bringing them to market are vital parts of growing a business, but successful new product development rarely happens by accident. Product design is a complicated area, so we asked Chris Flynn, founder of product design consultancy Flynn Product Design to take us through the key phases of product design.

A practical guide to flexible working rights for small businesses

Every employee that has worked for you for more than 26 weeks has the statutory right to request flexible working.

Here’s what every small business owner needs to know about flexible working rights, and how to handle flexible working requests from staff so that you don’t end up in front of an Employment Tribunal.

10 common self-assessment tax return mistakes and how to avoid them

If you need to submit a Self-Assessment Tax Return (SATR) it’s imperative you get it in on time and free of any mistakes. There are penalties for not submitting your tax return on time and you may have to pay a fine if HMRC decide that you haven’t taken sufficient care in preparing it. This […]

Can you dismiss an employee if they lied on their CV?

It is common for individuals to exaggerate or embellish certain aspects of their CV when applying for a role, however employers can be faced with a serious problem if it turns out the person they hired does not have the experience or qualifications needed to carry out the job at hand. So what can you […]

How to write a business plan for you, not the bank

When you decide it’s time to get your business started, you’ll find the first piece of advice given by most experts is to “get a business plan written”. And they’re right; that is the first step to turn your business dream into a reality. But many people find it the hardest step to make.

What I learned from going bust

Every business owner can learn valuable lessons from studying how successful businesses are born and grow. Looking out for, and replicating, key drivers of success in other businesses, can help to drive our own business forward. However, vital insight can also be gained from business failures. In many cases, what we can learn from terminal […]

Can you dismiss an employee for posting a negative company review?

Company reviews left on websites such as Glassdoor and Indeed can be a great way for your organisation to build a positive reputation and help in efforts to recruit new talent. However, there is always the risk that staff may leave negative reviews on these websites, which can have a very different impact altogether.

How to get funding fast – the quickest routes to finance for SMEs

When you need to find business funding fast, what are your options and what are the quickest ways for you to secure more finance? We talk you through the most viable fast funding options for SMEs who need finance in a hurry, and include practical tips on how to ensure your funding application goes as […]

The real cost of taking on your first employee

Taking on your first employee should be an exciting time. It means your business idea is working and you need help to expand. But while employees will help your business grow, they will also bring new stresses you may not have encountered before.

Making a contractual job offer to a new employee

Following a successful recruitment and selection process, employers will be able to identify which candidates they wish to employ. Making a job offer to the successful candidate appears to be a straightforward area of law, however, there are several factors that employers should consider to put themselves on the best path.

10 tax-saving ideas for small business owners

Small business tax is not straightforward. In fact, it can be a real minefield for the unwary. However, if you take a little time, and work with your accountant, it’s usually possible to find ways to save some tax.

How to hire graduates for your small business

A recent study found that 48% of millennial graduates believe a small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) to be the ideal sized business to work for as opposed to a larger organisation. Even with this encouraging statistic, graduate recruitment can be difficult for small businesses. If you are to succeed you need to take a multi-faceted […]

How the Employment Tribunal works

Are you an employer that is being taken to the Employment Tribunal by an employee for alleged sexual harassment or racial discrimination or for unfair dismissal? Are you an employee that feels your job situation is untenable? If so, then here’s what to do.

Leased or serviced office space – which is the best fit for your business?

Moving into a proper office can make what you do seem a whole lot more real – but it’s a daunting move to make, and with more options available than ever before, it’s unsurprising that many small business owners make the wrong decisions, or delay the move from home entirely. To help you choose the […]

How to choose a solicitor for your small business

When running your business, there may be times when you’ll need to obtain legal advice. Quite often, a solicitor will be called upon to review a contract, or to provide a legal opinion on a wide variety of business issues.

Top 10 VAT Tips for small businesses

Here are some tips to help small businesses keep on top of their VAT responsibilities – from choosing the right VAT scheme in the first place, to avoiding getting on the wrong side of HMRC.

5 businesses you can start and run part-time

Running a part-time business alongside your regular job doesn’t have to be a load of hassle or massively time-consuming. Earning a second income can be achieved with just a few hours’ work every week – and it’s a great way to supplement your current living

How to make realistic sales forecasts

So, how do you do forecast sales realistically? Every startup benefits greatly from making a cash flow forecast. But if your business hasn’t opened its doors yet, how is it possible to estimate the kind of sales you will get in your first month, let alone year of trading? We asked Robin Booth of Brixx.com […]

What do I need to know about a Preference Share issue?

A limited company can have many classes of shares. These can be ordinary shares, preference shares and redeemable shares. The articles of association usually set out the rights of these shares while allowing the directors to issue shares with such rights and restrictions as determined by ordinary resolution.

The key legal issues you will face as a small business owner

There are a number of different legal matters which need to be addressed before setting up a new business. Seeking good advice to help you through the planning and setup process ensures your business is built on solid foundations and can provide protection when things do not go to plan.

What is Google’s RankBrain and why should you care?

 Google RankBrain first rolled out in 2015. Unlike Google’s many previous updates it uses machine-learning and AI for the first time, in order to help better refine search results, especially in cases of rare, ambiguous or one-of-a-kind queries. Understanding more about Rankbrain can help your website succeed, so we asked digital marketing expert, Paul Morris […]