By Jason Sullock, New Customer Marketing Manager, Sage

With some extra professional help, you can achieve successful business growth.

There are 4.8 million small businesses in the UK and they represent the backbone of Britain’s economy. Because of their importance to the country, businesses like yours can access professional advice and support when they’re looking to grow.

There are four key times when expert support can be particularly helpful. Firstly, when you’re in the planning stages of growth, an expert business advisor can help you to look objectively at issues like how to manage, finance and sustain successful developments. If your plans require you to recruit new employees, an expert could advise you on this and other HR issues like equal opportunities, pay legislation and Health & Safety.

A bigger business needs more customers and this is the third area where input from outside of your business may be essential. An external advisor can help you create a strategy for finding and attracting those additional customers, sourcing new leads and improving marketing and communications. The fourth area where a professional viewpoint is valuable is software. Will your software be adequate for a bigger business? What new software might you need to purchase, and how can your existing software be adapted to cope with different demands?

However, before you decide to grow your business, it’s essential to make sure now is the right time to do it. By using benchmarking techniques you can compare your business’s performance with that of similar businesses and make sure that now is the right time for growth. And it’s not just similar businesses you should be observing. Continually monitoring your industry as a whole, following best practice and spotting lucrative ways of changing your business to respond to new developments is all part of planning for growth.

By understanding your business better with the help of a qualified advisor, you can work out its strengths and weaknesses, and take an audit of current and future threats and opportunities. The Sage white paper Growing Your Business offers guidance on all these topics and more, prompting to you to consider how to handle issues like new premises, new employees, new equipment and new suppliers.

Once you’ve decided that growth is the right move for your business now, this document will help you create a strategy that eliminates risk as far as possible, maximising your chances of successful growth.

Read Sage's white paper: Growing Your Business

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