Skip to main content
Here are some excellent resources for your business


For a successful business, you need a viable business idea, the skills to make it work and the funding. Discover whether your idea has what it takes.

Forming your business correctly is essential to ensure you are protected and you comply with the rules. Learn how to set up your business.

It is likely you will need funding to start your business unless you have your own money. Discover some of the main sources of start up funding.

Businesses and individuals must account for and pay various taxes. Understand your tax obligations and how to file, account and pay any taxes you owe.

Businesses are required to comply with a wide range of business laws. We introduce the main rules and regulations you must comply with.

Learn why business planning is an essential exercise if your business is to start and grow successfully, attract funding or target new markets.

Marketing matters. It drives sales and helps promote your brand and products. Discover how to market your business and reach your target customers.

Some businesses need a high street location whilst others can be run from home. Understand the key factors from cost to location, size to security.

Your employees can your biggest asset. They can also be your biggest challenge. We explain how to recruitment and manage staff successfully.

It is likely your business could not function without some form of IT. Learn how to specify, buy, maintain and secure your business IT.

Few businesses manage the leap from start up to high-growth business. Learn what it takes to scale up and take your business to the next level.

Business groups calls for action as unemployment rises

15 December 2020

The latest government data shows that unemployment reached 4.9% in the three months to October, redundancies hit a new high and the number of UK self-employed workers continued to fall.

Unemployment has risen but it is likely to get a lot worse according to the UK's leading business groups. The latest labour market statistics from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that unemployment stood at 4.9% in the three months to October after a record 370,000 redundancies.

Suren Thiru, head of economics at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said: "The re-introduction of tighter restrictions and the expected cliff edge caused by the original furlough scheme end date in October helped drive record redundancies."

However, he warned that worse is to come. "While the furlough scheme will help safeguard many jobs over the winter months, with businesses facing the prospect of further restrictions and a messy end to the Brexit transition period, major job losses remain probable in the near term."

The BCC is calling on the government to do more. Thiru said: "To help protect jobs and livelihoods, increased grant funding to ease the current squeeze on business cashflow and closing the gaps in government support remains vital. Delivering a UK-EU trade deal that provides clarity and certainty to businesses is crucial to avoid further damaging the UK jobs market already weakened by the pandemic."

The Institute of Directors (IoD) has raised the same concerns. Tej Parikh, IoD chief economist, said that the extension of the furlough scheme will "provide a lifeline for many jobs over the difficult winter months, but the big question is what happens after".

To avoid a further uptick in unemployment at the end of Q1 2021, Parikh said the Treasury should consider measures to encourage job creation. "A relief for employers' national insurance contributions, for example, could ease cash flow difficulties and put the jobs market in a stronger position come the end of the furlough scheme. It's crucial that March doesn't become another cliff-edge, business leaders have already seen far too many of those of late."

The Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development (CIPD) has called for an extension to the furlough scheme until June 2021. Gerwyn Davies, CIPD senior labour market adviser, said: "The worry is that the record increase in redundancies will add fuel to the rising jobless count in the coming months. The government needs to consider extending the Job Retention Scheme to the end of June to keep a lid on unemployment; especially for sectors that will continue to be subjected to public health restrictions. In addition, the government should significantly raise public skills investment to help upskill or retrain staff in sectors hardest hit by the pandemic and for those who have been made redundant during this period."

Written by Rachel Miller.

Stay up-to-date with business advice and news

Sign up to this lively and colourful newsletter for new and more established small businesses.

Contact us

Make an enquiry