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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 plan layout

It is essential to have a realistic, working business plan when you're starting up a business.

A business plan is a written document that describes your business, its objectives, its strategies, the market it is in and its financial forecasts. It has many functions, from helping you secure external funding to measuring success within your business.

How do I write a business plan?

Your business plan should be based on detailed information but should focus on the information the reader needs to know. It should not be a long document.

Before you start, you will need your financial information, market research - backing up the assertions you are making, information about your team and detailed product literature or technical specifications.

Your business plan will have six sections:

  • an executive summary - an overview of your business
  • your business - a description of what you sell and who to.
  • your marketing and sales strategy
  • your management team and personnel
  • your set up - what facilities and IT you have and how it how it helps you deliver your products or services
  • your financial plans and projections

This YouTube video will show you how to prepare a high-quality business plan using a number of easy-to-follow steps, and includes a template business plan.