Growing a business Growing a business

Starting company growth can be anything from taking on your first employee to moving into bigger premises and developing your customer base.

When considering growing your business look into the different opportunities that may be available in your area, is there a grant to support with growth or innovation vouchers to access professional services through a local university? Rather than renting an office that might stretch your budget have you considered utilising Business Incubation Spaces to help keep the costs down.

If you have any further questions about growing your business or would like to discuss any information in more detail contact a Business Navigator.

  • Taking on your first employee

    So you are taking on your first employee to help you build up your business, this will also entail additional responsibilities and it is important to have an understanding of your legal obligations as the employer. To help, define the role you would like the new member of staff to complete and recruit for this role specifically, whilst recruiting for the role think about the following options:

    • Will they be full or part time roles?
    • What will the salary be? Will there be benefits working for you? Consider the National Minimum Wage when setting these out
    • Do you want to receive the CV and covering letter or would you rather have an application form?
    • Where will you advertise the role? There are a number of different methods including: the Job Centre, Careers Fairs, Recruitment Agencies, Newspapers and Recruitment Websites.
    • Once you have had applicants apply for the role you must then shortlist the candidates you wish to interview. When shortlisting your candidates ensure that you are not discriminating against any grounds that are protected characteristics which are inclusive of:
      • Gender
      • Race
      • Age
      • Marital status
      • Disability
      • Religion
      • Transsexuality
      • Sexual Orientation
    • You should consider taking up references.

    When interviewing remember to ask each candidate the same set of questions and take notes on their responses, this will help you to consider each candidate carefully and make the best choice for your business.

  • Acas

    If you’re new to Human Resources, whether working as an HR assistant in a large organisation or managing staff in a small business, Acas can help you in your role.

    Our guidance, tools and resources can help you keep up-to-date with employment law and good workplace practice. We can show you how to get the best from staff and help you avoid costly mistakes.

    We can help you recruit, deal with workplace contracts, manage absence or deal with flexible working or parental leave requests. Our full range of advice is available through our handy advice A-Z.

  • Next Steps

    Once the successful candidate has been chosen a contract must be drawn up and a start date chosen by both yourself and the candidate, as a new employer you will need to register as an employer with HMRC, You must also set them up on a payroll system, other useful information can be found on the start checklist (Link on starter checklist )

  • Bits to not forget!

    Being an employer means the business must now have employers’ liability insurance with a minimum cover of £5 million; having Employers Liability Insurance cover the business against claims of compensation in the event of injury or illness of employees.

    Under the Employers’ Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969 it is a requirement that the insurance is provided by an authorised insurer, this list can be found on

  • When do I need to be VAT registered?

    Once your business reaches a VAT taxable turnover, the total of everything you sell that isn’t exempt from VAT, of more than £82,000.00 in a rolling 12 month period. If you’re unsure if you have reached the threshold in a 12 month period total the following items to check:

    • Goods hired or loaned to customers
    • Business goods used for personal reasons
    • Goods that you have bartered, part-exchanged or given as gifts
    • And services received from other countries that you had to reverse charge
    • If you completed building works for the business yourself that exceeded £100,000.00

    If you’re sitting over the threshold then you need to register for VAT (link in VAT – )

    Following from the date of registration you will need to ensure the company company charges the correct amount for VAT (link in VAT – )as well as submitting the VAT returns within the correct times and making payments accordingly.

    Although you are not able to charge businesses VAT on your invoices until your VAT number is allocated you will need to advise the HMRC of VAT spend during this period.