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The UK business blog will provide information and advice on a wide range of business related topics including finance, employment, law, marketing, training, the Internet and everything in between!

Our goal is to provide our visitors with a valuable source of information, offering guidance from industry experts to help you to grow your business throughout 2012 and beyond. Our experts write for all experience levels, so whether you're new to business, a serial entrepreneur or a seasoned business professional, we hope you’ll find our articles of interest and share your thoughts with others.

 
 

Small Business Saturday 6th December 2014

Another import from the US after Black Friday, Small Business Saturday aims to support and promote small business. Continue reading “Small Business Saturday 6th December 2014” »

 

Key Points Autumn Statement 2014

Growth Continue reading “Key Points Autumn Statement 2014” »

 

The etiquette of working abroad

I have been aware for some time, that behavior, or let us to be more precise say “the way you greet and interact with someone from another country, particularly an Asian country, can leave a lasting impression”. A lasting impression be that a good one or a bad one, certainly a lasting one. Continue reading “The etiquette of working abroad” »

 

An increase in underpaid tax thresholds collected via PAYE

Continue reading “An increase in underpaid tax thresholds collected via PAYE” »

 

Data protection answers to small business questions

Contrary to popular belief “Data Protection” does not ban you from doing everyday common sense things to run your business.  Continue reading “Data protection answers to small business questions” »

 

Can I Retire Now?

It seems almost surreal to say so to some people “you could retire now”, but I really do wonder if people who would love to semi retire or finish working entirely have really thought carefully enough about the process or just leave it as an unfathomable dream? Continue reading “Can I Retire Now?” »

 

A Black Economy?

All indications are that even though high street spending has recently increased,new car registrations are breaking records and whilst we can shout “statistics and dam statistics”, with higher consumer spending and un-employment both low and in decline one would expect Government tax income to be growing, but it isn’t! So what’s happening? Continue reading “A Black Economy?” »

 

Diamonds As Investments

Although everyone appreciates the beauty of diamonds, not many see them as the investment that they are. Continue reading “Diamonds As Investments” »

 

Property Investment and Buy-To-Let in a Nutshell

If you’re lucky enough to have a tidy lump sum and little debt it’s a dilemma as to what to do with the money. With interest rates at an all time low leaving your money to erode in a bank account is out of the question, there is little confidence in pension funds, the stock exchange is volatile and how do you go about choosing the right fund anyway? Continue reading “Property Investment and Buy-To-Let in a Nutshell” »

 

Have Visitors But No Sales- What’s the problem?

So your online shop has lots of visitors but few sales…

Yes I know this is an old well worn subject and yes there are many articles on the subject, but I just wonder how many people miss the obvious. Continue reading “Have Visitors But No Sales- What’s the problem?” »

 

Stepping Into A New Market

If I’m setting up a business I confess to cutting a few corners, but as a serial entrepreneur, I tend to have a constant eye on the market, competition, prices and much, much more.

It struck me though, that some of the rules I follow don’t really have to be set in concrete. Most business people would consider these top points before setting out (in business or production/sale of something new) Continue reading “Stepping Into A New Market” »

 

Thinking of The Basics

You’ve been given more responsibility and you now realise you need to plan a little more– Trust me, it doesn’t really matter how senior the job is and you don’t have to tell the world about how you reached your decision, but you do need to take this new responsibility seriously and add some structure to the thought process. Continue reading “Thinking of The Basics” »

 

Principles of Management

If you’re contributing to a blog, a blog of any kind on any subject, it is often a challenge to decide what to write about or how to write it. Well we’ve written many articles on management and today I thought… “well, why not go back to basics” after all, many, many of us have had many years of experience, yet every month there are people new to management. Continue reading “Principles of Management” »

 

Important Changes to VAT on Digital Services

If you sell digital services such as music or software downloads, e-books or online videos then from 1st January 2015 if you are selling these internationally you will have to determine whether your customers are businesses or not and where they are based. Continue reading “Important Changes to VAT on Digital Services” »

 

The First Rules of Marketing

The first rule in marketing is surely to establish whether there’s a market for your product or if you can create one? Continue reading “The First Rules of Marketing” »

 

The New Flexible Working Rules and What It Means For Your Business

After 26 weeks employment, all employees now statutorily have the right to request flexible working and as an Employer you are legally obliged to consider this and go through a consideration and handling process.

As an employer you may groan about the extra bureaucracy and administration costs, however you should now be putting a flexible working policy in place whether you like it or not.
Government statistics show (“lies, damned lies and statistics” I hear you shouting!) that offering flexible working practices will lead to economic benefits through improved efficiency and employee satisfaction. There are also many business advocates who say that allowing greater flexibility will help motivate staff , increase productivity and reduce the hassle of staff turnover which may actually reduce costs.

It is also not a fait accompli. Although your employees have the right to request flexible working practices as an employer you still has the right to refuse if you have a valid business reason. It is a right to ask and not a right to have.

If you do reject the request it must be for one of the following business reasons as set out in the legislation:

  • the burden of additional costs,
  • an inability to reorganise work amongst existing staff
  • an inability to recruit additional staff
  • a detrimental impact on quality
  • a detrimental impact on performance
  • detrimental effect on ability to meet customer demand
  • insufficient work for the periods the employee proposes to work
  •  planned structural change to your business

More details of the full request ,consideration and handling process can be found here.

http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=1616

https://www.gov.uk/flexible-working/overview

Recent survey results by Citrix have shown that only 43% of  SMB’s support the decision and 21% believe this will have a negative impact time.  A survey by Fraser Young employment law specialists found 84pc of employers expect the new right to cause resentment among staff. More than half predict the change will adversely affect the day-to-day running of businesses.

My opinion for what it’s worth is rather than focusing on how many hours an employee has worked , put systems in place to ensure that their objectives are met ,focus on the quality of work and that your employees are actually enhancing your business. You may be surprised.

 

UK Marginal Tax Rates Explained

What rate of tax would you pay on an additional £1 of earnings? If your annual income is between £41,865 and £150,000 you may think the tax rate would be 40%, but the peculiarities of the UK tax system mean you could pay much more. Continue reading “UK Marginal Tax Rates Explained” »

 

The Current State of European Car sales

Back in December 2012, it was reported that car sales in Europe had sunk to their lowest point since 1995. Italian manufacturer Fiat SpA (F), Renault SA and PSA Peugeot Citroen had the biggest falls in sales. This is due to a third-quarter recession in the 17 countries using the euro. Continue reading “The Current State of European Car sales” »

 

The Discipline of Focus

To focus is surely one of the most important disciplines.. Continue reading “The Discipline of Focus” »

 

Budget 2014 implications for UK SME’s

Mike Smith provides brief insight into the Budget and some of the implications for UK SMEs Continue reading “Budget 2014 implications for UK SME’s” »