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In an attempt to deal with the looming pension crisis and the failure of people to make provision for their retirement, the UK Governments has introduced legislation that will require all employers to auto-enrol their staff in a qualifying workplace pension scheme. The rationale behind the legislation is that it seems that currently many employees […]

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Way back in 2002 the EU enacted a directive which required owners of websites based in the EU to obtain customers’ consent before using ‘cookies’ to track how they browse their website. As usual the implementation of EU directives is subject to a number of delays and opt-outs, so much so that we often forget […]

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The Time to Train regulations were introduced by the Labour government and took effect for businesses employing 250 or more people in April 2010. They were due to be extended to all employers as from April 2011 but this has now been indefinately postponed to enable a full review is undertaken. The regulations require businesses […]

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The National Employment Savings Trust (“Nest”) is the UK Government’s pension scheme introduced following the Pensions Commission’s 2005 report and is intended to encourage people to save for retirement. In fact it isn’t a new scheme, just a rebranding of the Personal Accounts Scheme which has been in operation for some time. The real difference […]

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In recognition of the increase in life expectancy which we all know will have a serious effect on the UK economy – people will draw retirement benefit for longer and will need more health care for example – the government has proposed to abolish the Default Retirement Age (“DRA”) of 65. On the surface there […]

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The UK Coalition Government have today proposed a number of initiatives designed to reduce the burden of bureaucracy and red tape for business.  Proposals from the Department for Business include the re-publicising of the Your Freedom website, a “beefing up” of the Regulatory Policy Committee’s role and the provision of greater detail on the nature […]

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The recent worldwide financial crisis has clearly indicated that there is an urgent need to improve the effectiveness of company boards. This can only be achieved when all board members, together with shareholders, employees and other stakeholders, truly understand their roles and responsibilities. For over 10 years the Institute of Directors (IoD) have been offering […]

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This is the shocking verdict which the authors of a new report, published by the Institute of Economic Affairs, have come to following an in depth study into tax related compliance and administration costs which fall on UK businesses. The report also reveals that the average Finance Act in the 2000s has been three times […]

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The Combined Code on Corporate Governance  * is published by the Financial Reporting Council and applies to all UK incorporated companies (and some foreign companies) listed on the UK Stock Exchange. The most recent (2008) version of the Code combines the Cadbury and Greenbury reports on corporate governance, the Turnbull Report on Internal Control (revised […]

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For some unknown reason, business owners and managers make things more complicated and complex than they need to. Frankly business is not that complicated. A business exists to make a profit. If it doesn’t then give it up. In order to make a profit a business must offer a product or service that has appeal within a market, it […]

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Accounting is viewed by most non accountants as a complicated and highly technical matter, and this is a view that is encouranged by the accountancy profession. But the truth is that it is based on a very simple principal which once understood allows business owners and managers to understand the financial state of their business without […]

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This Blog is dedicated to offering help and advice to people who run or want to run a business of any kind. In addition to the information contained in the posts we also offer a number of free business guides, usually around 12 pages long, on a wide range of subjects. You can access these via […]

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In the UK it is remarkably easy and cheap to form a limited company. For less than £100, perhaps even less than £50, you can have a company formed in a matter of hours. This compares to the situation in many other EC countries where the costs can run into thousands and it can take […]

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Wherever you look on the Internet you will find free and trial software that you can download and use. I often try software I’ve come across on forums and blogs either for my own use or to recommend to clients. I was discussing this with a friend a few days ago and he was horrified! […]

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The Health and Safety (Offences) Act 2008 (the “Act”) came into force on 16 January 2009, increasing penalties for health and safety offences. Principally the Act: raises the maximum fine that can be imposed when a case is brought in a lower court from £5,000 to £20,000; broadens the range of cases that can be […]

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A New Publication – Standing together: universities helping business through the downturn, has been put together by Universities UK, as the major representative body for the higher education sector, with the assistance of the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE). It sets out the kind of support universities and colleges can offer employers, both […]

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David Cameron has called for Gordon Brown to cut the red tape surrounding government contracts to allow smaller, newer firms to win business.   The Conservative leader says less than one in five contracts from the government goes to small firms and this should be changed as it is responsible for buying goods and services […]

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In the present financial crisis there will be very few businesses who will not be finding things difficult. The most important area that business owners and managers should be concentrating on is cash flow and the following are a few elements to look at where managing cash flow is concerned: Credit Control – no sales […]

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Must all companies have a secretary? Yes and No. From 6th April 2008 private companies will not need to have a company secretary but public limited companies still will. Furthermore companies registered before 6th April 2008 will have to change their Articles of Association at an Extraordinary General Meeting of the shareholders to remove the […]

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Accountants come in all shapes and sizes, both good and bad. To many people they are a necessary evil but a good accountant can add value to your business and help you sleep at night. But how do you find the right one for you? The first step is to accept that you need an […]

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