The UK Government often comes under attack for not effectively supporting start-ups and small businesses, but the reality is that for business owners in these groups that are prepared to do the research, there may be help available. This can be in the form of financial assistance, tax relief or good old-fashioned advice, guidance and workshops to help you grow your business and succeed. The following explains what some of these options are.

 

For starters, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy provides a lot of links to different geographically-based support that start ups and small businesses can gain access to. In a lot of cases, this business advice is available for free, and there may also be helpful workshops too. What is available varies in different areas, but it is likely that both one on one advice and guidance as well as different types of workshops could be very helpful in addressing gaps in knowledge, or in pinpointing ways to accelerate business growth.

 

Monetary support is available from the UK Government in some cases. For start-ups in particular, it is possible to apply for a start up loan. For this opportunity, a start-up is defined as a company that has literally just started, through to one that has been trading for up to two years. When awarded, these loans range from £500 to £25,000 in the form of a government-backed unsecured personal loan – which is where this differs from a business loan. During the loan application process, applicants get the benefit of free support and guidance with writing a business plan. Once successfully approved for a loan (which does require that you pass a credit check and that you can afford the loan) then you will also gain the advantage of a year of free mentoring services. This can be highly beneficial for new business owners to improve their skill sets and understanding of all of the functions their business will need to fulfil. Applicants must be UK residents and meet other eligibility criteria too.

 

For start-ups and small businesses operating in technology and manufacturing industries, the UK Government supports innovation where research and development is being undertaken. This support comes in the way of tax relief or credit from HMRC. It is often the case that start-ups and small businesses do not realise this support exists, or they dismiss it as not applying to them. In certain cases, it may be possible to get as much as 30% of R&D expenditures back when applying for this tax relief. If you think there is any possibility you might be undertaking work in these industries that involves trial and error to overcome scientific or technological issues, it is definitely worth investigating this option.

As can be seen, for start-ups and small business owners that are prepared to go looking, there is support available from the UK Government which includes free advice, guidance, workshops, financial support and tax reliefs. It may be well worth investigating the support that you can get today, to help your new or small business to succeed.