Increasing numbers of people around the world are deciding to start their own business. Especially with the rise of e-Commerce – you don’t have to invest so much to get up and running.
If things don’t work out, you can easily start again or head back to employment. When you set up a small business, however, it’s important that you understand the rules and regulations that you have to abide by.
Here are a few steps that you can follow to ensure that you’re laying down the proper foundations necessary for your small business to flourish and prosper!
Registering Your Business
The first step is to ensure that you’ve properly registered your company. There are a number of different types of company entities you can choose. It is important to do your research and select the one that is best suited for your business and future goals.
One option you have is to form a limited company. This will make sure your business is a separate legal entity to you as an individual. You may hear the process referred to as company formation, company registration or even company incorporation.
When it comes down to it, these are all one and the same thing. They simply ensure that any money, property, assets responsibilities and agreements purchased by, owned by, or agreed by your company are legally separate from your own finances and your own belongings. If your company goes under, you won’t have to sell your own home, vehicle or other assets to clear its debts.
Making Sure You Have the Right Licenses
Certain businesses and companies will require very specific licenses to operate. If you’re operating in a niche area, make sure to research the licenses you need to sell whatever it may be that you’re providing the consumer market with.
One example is cannabis vendors. If you start a cannabis business, or any other business that requires licenses to operate, make sure to do plenty of research into the area. It’s also worth asking for professional help and advice to ensure you’re always playing by the rules.
Paying Your Taxes
A major area of focus once you’re up and running is taxes. When you run your own business, you will find that you take on responsibility for paying your personal taxes and your company taxes.
This can be difficult if you don’t have a background in accounting, so most small business owners will hire the services of a professional accountant to take a weight off their shoulders. They will be able to help you with your end of year assessment and tax returns.
They’ll ensure you’re paying the right amount. This will mean you’re not overpaying (which is bad for your profits) or underpaying (which could land you in some serious legal trouble). The service is well worth the investment!
Familiarizing Yourself With Employment Law
When your business begins to grow and expand, you may find that you need to take on staff to help keep things progressing. It’s essential that you are aware of all areas of employment law before you do this.
Taking on staff is a huge responsibility and you can’t risk treating employees improperly – they could bring a case against you that would tarnish your professional reputation and potentially cost you a lot in compensation and payouts.
Here are a few areas to cover!
Minimum wage is in place to ensure that employers don’t exploit employees. It ensures people are being paid enough to live. Make sure to look up the minimum wage that you need to pay in your area to guarantee that your employees are being paid at least what they are entitled to legally.
Ideally, you should at least be paying people a living wage. Remember, your employees make your profits and are the key to your success, so you should at least help them live a decent quality of life.
You cannot discriminate against any of your staff. Protected characteristics include age, sex, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, marital or civil partnership status, pregnancy, or being or being a transgender person.
All employers have a duty of care over their employees. You need to adhere to your duty of care to ensure that your employees are always safe and that they don’t have any case to file negligence claims against you. Make sure you always provide your employees with a safe and secure working environment.
You need to protect them from experiencing any harm – mental or physical – as a direct result of working for you or being in the workplace you provide them with.
Starting a small business up can take a lot of time, effort and investment. But at the end of the day, when you start raking in the profits, you’ll soon come to see that it’s all worth it. Hopefully, the above advice will help you to get your business started out in the right direction.
Remember, the closer you play by the rules, the less likely you are to experience trouble down the line. The rules are generally in place for a reason – to protect people. So, respect them at all times!