Running a Business

  • British Standards

  • Business Growth

  • Closing a Business

    • An Introduction to Selling Your Business

      This factsheet explains how to prepare a business for sale. It covers the legal and tax issues, how to plan the sale, the process of finding a buyer and how to negotiate a sale...

    • A Guide to Dissolving a Partnership

      This factsheet explains how to go about dissolving a partnership, and covers the implications of partnership agreements and the Partnership Act 1890...

    • Methods of Valuing a Business

      This factsheet describes the different methods used to value a business and which methods are best suited to valuing different types of enterprise. It also outlines other factors that need to be considered in valuing a business...

    • A Guide to Health and Safety Regulations for Computer and IT Equipment

      This factsheet explains the regulations affecting computer users and the steps employers need to take to safeguard the health and safety of their staff...

  • Company Law

    • Duties of a Company Secretary

      This factsheet outlines the administrative duties commonly performed by company secretaries, including the filing of an annual confirmation statement (which has replaced the annual return) and annual accounts with Companies House...

    • Duties of a Company Director

      This factsheet looks at the role of a company director in private limited companies and considers their basic duties, responsibilities and potential liabilities. It also outlines some of the implications of the Companies Act for company directors...

    • A Guide to Appointing Non-executive Directors

      This factsheet outlines the potential advantages of inviting a non-executive director to join the board of a small company. It looks at the duties involved in the role, the legal responsibilities, and how much non-executive directors should be paid. It also considers how a business can go about finding and hiring a non-executive director...

    • An Introduction to the Companies Act 2006

      This factsheet explains what the Companies Act 2006 covers, who it applies to, what obligations it imposes on businesses and what companies and directors must do to comply with their obligations. It also provides useful hints and tips and sources of further information...

    • A Guide to Registering People with Significant Control

      This factsheet defines the meaning of 'people with significant control' and what a PSC Register is. It outlines the information that must be recorded in a register and when the information must be updated. It also explains the penalties for failing to complete a PSC register...

  • Contracts and Agreements

  • Customers

    • Choosing a Customer Relationship Management System

      This factsheet explains what Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems are and how you can use them. It describes the different types of CRM systems, provides examples of CRM software providers, and outlines what you need to think about when a choosing CRM system for your business...

    • Tips for Building Customer Loyalty

      This factsheet looks at practical ways to encourage customers to return to your business and recommend it to others...

    • Implementing Smoking Bans in Business Premises

      This factsheet provides information about how to implement a no-smoking policy that covers business premises and how to comply with requirements of the smoking ban. It also explains how the smoking ban is enforced and the penalties for non compliance with the ban...

  • Insurance

    • Insurance Cover for a Business

      This factsheet introduces the main types of business insurance available, indicating those that are legal requirements...

    • Choosing and Using an Insurance Broker

      This factsheet explains the services that insurance brokers provide, as well as the issues that should be considered when selecting and briefing a broker. It also identifies how to find a reputable broker and suggests ways of resolving any problems that may be encountered with a broker...

    • Employers' Liability Insurance

      This factsheet explains what is covered by employers' liability insurance, what the law requires and how to choose the right policy. It includes hints and tips and sources of further information...

    • An Introduction to Indemnity Insurance

      This factsheet defines the different types of third-party indemnity insurance, including public and product liability, and professional and personal indemnity cover. It explains the benefits of indemnity insurance, which is provided to protect you and your business from the risks and consequences of claims against you. It also provides suggestions about what you need to consider when choosing indemnity policies...

    • A Guide to Income Protection Insurance

      This factsheet explains what is offered by Income Protection insurance policies and outlines some of the issues that you may need to consider when looking for a policy to suit your particular circumstances. It also briefly describes some of the alternative types of insurance cover for you to consider when looking at this type of policy...

    • An Introduction to Trade Credit Insurance

      This factsheet summarises the general principles of trade credit insurance and explains the types of policy available, the benefits of trade credit insurance, insurers' considerations when issuing a policy, and how to arrange trade credit insurance...

  • Networking

    • A Guide to Business Networking

      This factsheet outlines the various types of business networks that are available and explains how to get the most out of networking opportunities...

    • A Guide to Barter Networks for Business

      This factsheet focuses on barter networks for business, rather than the pure swap markets that have appeared online in recent years. It explains how barter networks operate, lists the advantages and disadvantages of barter and explains how small firms can get involved. It also covers the tax implications of barter transactions and lists examples of barter networks operating in the UK...

  • Premises

    • A Guide to Renting Business Premises

      This factsheet outlines what is involved in agreeing a lease or a licence to occupy. It explains what terms and conditions a lease agreement should cover, what the process of agreeing a lease entails, the costs incurred when renting premises for the first time and issues arising on termination of the lease...

    • A Guide to Commercial Mortgages

      This factsheet explains what a commercial mortgage is, and describes the most common types of mortgage. It considers the advantages and disadvantages of commercial mortgages, explains how lenders assess applications, and provides information about costs and fees. Hints and tips and sources of further information are also included...

    • Choosing Commercial Premises

      This factsheet explains the main factors to consider when choosing premises for a business, including costs, location and the type of premises required. It introduces the options for buying or renting business premises and outlines their main benefits and drawbacks. It also suggests how to find suitable premises...

    • An Introduction to Business Rates

      This factsheet outlines what business rates are and the types of premises on which they are payable. It explains how business rates are calculated and how the rateable value of business premises is determined in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland...

    • An Introduction to Managed Workspace

      This factsheet introduces the concept of managed workspace, including business incubators. It explains the benefits of this type of workspace for small business tenants and suggests ways of finding suitable premises...

    • Business Rates Relief Schemes in England

      This factsheet explains the business rates relief that is available in England...

    • Business Rates Relief Schemes in Wales

      This factsheet explains the business rates relief that is available in Wales...

    • Business Rates Relief Schemes in Scotland

      This factsheet explains the different types of business rates relief that are available in Scotland...

    • Business Rates Relief Schemes in Northern Ireland

      This factsheet explains the different types of business rates relief and exemptions that apply in Northern Ireland...

  • Professional Services

    • Choosing and Using an Architect

      This factsheet guides you through the process of choosing and working with an architect. It describes how to find an architect, how to brief them and what fees you should expect to pay...

    • Choosing and Using a Graphic Designer

      This factsheet describes the benefits of using a graphic designer. It explains how to find and choose a designer and prepare a project brief, as well as discussing the legal issues relating to copyright. It also identifies the possible costs involved...

    • Choosing and Using an Accountant

      This factsheet explains the services offered by accountants, what to look for when choosing an accountant and how to find and appoint one. It provides information on monitoring and assessing the service received and gives an indication of likely costs...

    • Choosing and Using a PR Consultant

      This factsheet explains the role public relations (PR) can play in a business. It describes the ways that professional PR advice can help and suggests ways to find and choose the right PR consultant or agency...

    • Choosing and Using a Copywriter

      This factsheet describes the benefits of using a copywriter. It explains how to find and choose a copywriter, including the preparation of a project brief and the legal issues relating to copyright. It also considers the potential costs involved in using a copywriter...

    • Choosing and Using a Business Translator

      This factsheet explains the services provided by a business translator and provides guidance about how to find one. It outlines what should be expected from a business translator and provides an indication of the fees they are likely to charge. It also includes sources of further information and support...

    • Choosing and Using a Freight Forwarder

      This factsheet explains the services a freight forwarder can offer, and how to find a suitable freight forwarder. It also details the costs involved in engaging a freight forwarder and describes how to get the most out of the service...

  • Sales

    • A Guide to Costing and Pricing a Product or Service

      It is important to understand the impact of pricing on profitability and be able to choose the best pricing strategy for a business. This factsheet outlines some of the costing and pricing issues that should be considered and looks at alternative pricing strategies that can be used...

    • A Guide to Writing Effective Sales Letters

      This factsheet explains how to write an effective sales letter for your product or service. It describes how you can use sales letters to engage with your target audience and motivate readers to take action...

    • Sources of Public Sector Tenders and Contracts

      This factsheet lists online resources providing information about public sector tender opportunities and contracts. It includes EU websites, UK and national Government portals and sector-specific resources. It also gives examples of commercial subscription services listing public sector contracts...

    • Selling to the Health Services Sector

      This factsheet summarises the opportunities and challenges facing smaller suppliers that intend to supply to the health services sector, including the economic and political background to health sector procurement affecting them. It also sets out the various types of goods and services that health providers buy, and the various methods of procurement they use. It explains how to supply to both the NHS and NHS-funded providers across the UK, as well as to private healthcare services, and provides sources of further information and support...