Businesses that have recently suffered the ultimate indignity from keeping their heads well and truly planted in the sand include: PC World, Blockbuster, Woolworth, Millets.
But even if your name is not on the casualty list then the world looks pretty tough. Here is the transcript of an identical conversation I had this morning, one with a global brand name giant, and then with a London-based small business.
Everything and nothing has changed in the New World:
• The High Street is dying
• New, low-cost business models are everywhere
• Freemium and premium pricing models exist side by side.
There are clearly new rules for what is rapidly becoming a New World for most of us. Here are 11 Rules for the New World.
With the auto-enrolment staging deadlines still some way off for small UK businesses, many SME owners appear to be ignoring warnings about establishing employee pension schemes. According to Anthony Carty, of pension specialists Clifton Wealth, a combination of complacency, regulator vigilance and sheer volume of implementation could result in the death of some businesses.
The UK is not the first country to introduce an automatic enrolment based workplace pension programme. In fact, we are quite late to the party. Many other nations, primarily Australia, Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Poland, Uruguay and New Zealand have had similar systems for many years, and there is much that we can learn from their experiences, successes and difficulties.
We have now entered into the small to medium sized business market, with auto enrolment compulsory for companies having between 50 and 249 members of staff as at 1st April 2014. They must introduce auto enrolment by 30 March 2015.
An immediate issue to account for is the employer’s cost and time. A properly prepared budget is essential to enable planning for future and present costs. On the positive side, some companies may look at the pension scheme as a good way to reward their staff and retain quality employees over the long term.
Stephen Midgley, Vice President, Global Marketing at Absolute Software shares his top tips on how to avoid business security mishaps.
Despite countless calls for change and the introduction of various codes and charters to address the problem, late payment continues to be one of the biggest issue facing small businesses today. Indeed it seems to be getting worse with a survey from the Federation of Private Businesses showing that 23% of its members reported an increase in late payment over the past year compared with just 3% who reported a decrease.
It’s a minefield out there for today’s IT managers. Few other professions have undergone such radical change in a relatively short period of time. New operating systems, methods of working, technologies and compliance requirements seem to emerge on a daily basis in the IT profession. What’s more, a recent Timico survey found that 52% of IT managers are also responsible for business telecoms.
Written by experienced assessors at LRQA, a global certifier of management systems, this guide has been designed to help you decide whether certification of your management systems is the right route for your business.
Setting out on the path to implementing management systems can seem daunting at first. However, the good news is that it needn’t be. With a properly timed and costed project plan with defined timescales and appropriate resources in place it is easily achievable.
Organisations are now starting to realise the importance of travel and expense management (T&E) as strategically significant. However, business intelligence specialists, Aberdeen Group suggest many companies cannot establish which expense management system will be most effective for them.
For many entrepreneurs, launching a business can be the most exciting time. Putting so much effort into your ideas and seeing them take form is a great achievement. However, I have spoken to a lot of start-ups in the past that feel as though they have reached the finish line by simply getting their business off the ground. In reality, this is when the hard work really begins.