Autumn Statement Summary

 

The Last Autumn Statement

In the wake of the UK's proposed withdrawal from the EU, the government have release their Autumn Statement - outlining the plans for our economy moving forward.

This is set to be the last Autumn Statement, as in 2017 it will become the Autumn Budget, with the statement moving to Spring. 

Currently, the budget is released just before the start of the tax year and includes the majority of changes, which causes a moment of panic for business owners.

The switch has been implemented so that tax changes are announced well before the start of the next tax year.

(2017 will be a transition year seeing both a Spring & Autumn Budget announcement, before the Spring Statement is introduced in March 2018.)


Which Area Would You Like Summarised?

Below we've summarised all of the highs and lows of the Autumn Statement and who will be affected most:

Budget 2016 Infographic

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5 Steps To Make Your Payroll Faster & Cheaper

Let's face it, Payroll can often make business owners feel a little under the weather.

Payroll is confusing, it takes up a lot of time and can damage your reputation with your employees if something does go wrong.

So, to help you this Christmas, we've created this handy blog to help business owners, young and old, take simple steps towards a faster, cheaper and better payroll model than what you're currently using!

It's in the form of an infographic: which gives you real data, whilst explaining things in a way that's easy on the eye. So enjoy our story, of a little old business owner who just wants to pay his team well.

Is The HMRC Refund Text Real Or A SCAM?

Have you received a message that looks similar to this? Lots of people have and they're asking whether this link to a HMRC tax refund is real or not?

In the past HMRC have promised that they will never contact you via text message or email, and their policy in this hasn't changed. It's important that as many people as possible are informed, so share this post around with others who you think may have been targeted.

We want to advise anyone who has received a text or an email like this - to not click on the link provided, or enter your personal details. This is a scam, often employed at this time of year, to get your financial and personal information by impersonating HMRC.

If you have already clicked on the link and entered your details, contact your bank as soon as possible for advice on what to do next.

As always, please be vigilant with messages that request your personal information and if in doubt, check with someone from the original source they're claiming to be.

DH Business Support
 

Do You Need An Accountant? Check Us Out!

This week we released our first ever video explaining what we do as a business. You can watch it above before you read on.

Get in touch at the bottom of the page!


We've always wanted to explain our services in the most clear & helpful way possible. We'd toyed with text, graphics and revisited the whiteboard numerous times, until we came up with this video!

We're really proud of it because we genuinely feel that it's the most honest, straightforward and clear representation about who we are and what we do. Not only does it remind us of all the businesses we work with, how they've changed and will continue doing so, but also really excites us to start helping other businesses make better use of their time and more sense of their finances.

Unlimited Business Support - for a fixed monthly fee. Accounts, Tax, Bookkeeping, Payroll. DH Business Support.

So, if you've come here looking for an accountant, bookkeeper, payroll team or even someone just to fill in your end of year tax - get in touch!

We hope you enjoyed the video too, and we look forward to talking with you about your business even - if it is just for a phonecall. (But we hope it'll be for more!)

Send us an email: hello@dhbusinesssupport.com or write to us on Facebook, or Twitter.

A-Z Guide: Liverpool Food & Drink Festival 2015

Liverpool Food & Drink Festival 2015

This weekend is The Liverpool Food & Drink Festival! It's finally here! But sometimes it's hard to make the most of these opportunities, because of how much goes on. 

We wanted to give people a quick breakdown of what to expect and let you prioritise anything you're most excited about - so we decided to compile our own A-Z Guide for the event. Hopefully it will also wet the appetite of those who are still on the fence about going!

What are you looking forward to most? Is there anyone you're trying to persuade to come along? Let us know in the comments & share this with your friends!

Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Atmosphere.

Atmosphere

Picture this: thousands of people will be gathered at the most iconic park in Liverpool. The smell of fresh food will be finding it's way to your nose, the sound of laughter and conversations infectiously making you smile - It's almost here, and it's an event you won't want to miss.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Bold Street Coffee.

Bold Street Coffee

Second letter in and we've already met the big boys of Liverpool's barista scene. Great coffee, priceless latte art and full flavoured beans means there ain't no party without Bold St Coffee.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Celebrity Chefs.
 

Celebrity Chefs

Find the celebrities in the demo tent, where they'll be showcasing their skills! There'll be two personalities on each day, with TV chef Valentine Warner headlining on Sunday! (Pstt - Go to letter H for your Saturday Headliner)

Also appearing over the weekend are Great British Bake-Off runner up Richard Burr and food writer Rachel Khoo.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Drinks
 

Drinks!

Have you ever had a creme egg shot? How about Ferrero Roche? ... pick wisely at Retro Shots. But for all of you who would prefer something a bit less experimental there will be alternatives, like pints of beer. 

Thistly Cross Cider & Wemyss Malts should get a mention too - the options are endless! But remember, drink responsibly!

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival East Avenue Bakehouse.

East Avenue Bakehouse

They bake their own bread and are experts at it too. Bread's not all they do though, they also serve great wine and believe in only the best fresh and tasty meat too - Top pick: can't go wrong!

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Fresh Produce.

Fresh Produce

One of the best things at a festival like this is, everywhere you look, there'll be food that's fresh and made to order. The businesses there wholeheartedly agree that fresh produce is best for business. You're guaranteed to get tasty grub whilst also supporting your local producers, it's a win-win situation. 

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Guitars

Guitars

Acoustic, Electric, Ukuleles - you name it, it'll be played. Music throughout the day by various acts, playing both originals & covers. You never know, you might hear a future X Factor Champion? 

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Hemsley
 

Hemsley & Hemsley

Saturday's headliners are sisters Jasmine & Melissa Hemsley. They're big on delicious, nutrient dense cooking and their book 'The Art of Eating Well' was nominated for National Food & Drink Book Of The Year. 

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Independent Businesses

Independent Businesses

There'll be lots of them, so come along, get to know your city and support your locals!

 

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Jump on the train. Merseyrail.
 

Jump on the train!

Seriously, parking is going to manic. Get the train to St Michael's station and walk for 5 minutes. It'll be a good carb burner after you've eaten all of that food too. For you bus lovers the 80 & 75 stop outside Croxteth Gate, whilst the healthy among us will probably use City & Go Bikes! 

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Kid's Activities.
 

Kid's Activities

Eleventh letter in and a reminder that the Liverpool Food & Drink Festival is for the whole family! There'll be some awesome children's activities throughout the weekend including a Bear Mascot! We're not sure if it's a real bear, but we hope not, as there will also be a bear hunt... and that's just unkind!

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Local Suppliers

Local Suppliers

Did we mention that loads of local suppliers will be there? Support your locals!

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Mowgli Curry Clinic
 

Mowgli's Curry Clinic

What's better than Liverpool's own Mowgli Curry? Being able to make them yourself at home anytime you like! We think Nisha Katona is great and she'll be sharing her secrets and letting you have a go at making your own curry, there and then, under her guidance. What an opportunity!

This is on a first come first serve basis and you have to register at a secret location, which we're not going to tell you because we want a place on it.... (oh fine, you have to sign up at the Kingfisher Beer Truck! Race you there?)

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival New Faces

New Faces

Say hello to some of Liverpool's new restaurants, like Mister Miyagi's & Mexican Village.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Outdoor Fun

Outdoor Fun!

We hope! ...please don't rain, please don't rain, please don't rain.

 

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Puppy Creche
 

Puppy Creche

No dog's allowed! However, dog-owners can leave their pups with Tails in The City at their creche. This includes organised walks, but bookings must be made in advance to tailsinthepark@gmail.com. 

For one 90 minute slot, you pay £5 which goes to The Clatterbridge Cancer Charity.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Quid not Cards

Quid, not Cards

It's important to know that cards aren't accepted at the festival, so bring some cash instead.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Real People

Real Food, Real People

Did we mention you'll be supporting your local businesses and local suppliers. What can we say, we love local businesses! :)

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Street Food Area

Street Food Area

A popular place over the years - featuring lots of quirky vehicles, with mouthwatering food from around the world. Mmmmmm.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Cocktail Championship
 

The LFDF 2015 Cocktail Champion

There will be a cocktail competition, with staff from the city's bars going head to head. There'll be twists and turns, but once the dust has settled and all the smoke has cleared, there can only be one Champion.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Ultimate Fudge Factory

Ultimate Fudge Factory

Because, who doesn't like fudge?!... Get your dessert pouches ready, people!

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Vino Masterclass

Vino Masterclass

They'll be plenty to do over the weekend! For example Bretta&Co will be hosting them, so if you enjoy the odd tipple or want tojust have a laugh with some friends - go along to them!

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Wine Evening
 

Wine Evening

It's on Wednesday night & tickets are £15.00. You'll have the opportunity to sample more than 100 different wines and eat delicious cheeses too - all inside the beautiful Palmhouse on Sefton Park. Magical...

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Xocolat Coeur De

Xocolat, Coeur De

See what we did there? Let us off! Coeur De Xocolat will be providing chocolate tasting so you can discover the world of fine chocolates.

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Yummy

Yummy Food

All day, All night!

 
Liverpool Food & Drink Festival Zero Regrets

Zero Regrets

If you've read this far, it'll be worth your time!

Share this post with you're friends & we'll see you there!

 

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How Can Crowdfunding Bring Your Idea To Life? (feat. XU Magazine)

XU Magazine - Crowdfunding. Bringing Ideas to life.

Crowdfunding is all about getting your ideas off the ground. Sometimes life changing ideas come to everyday people, so this is new concept allows creators to pitch their ideas to potential customers instead of taking out crippling loans they can’t afford to take a risk on.

XU Magazine - Kickstarter or IndieGoGo

You’ll probably have heard of crowdfunding and be familiar with websites like Kickstarter or Indiegogo. They basically work under the principal that instead of giving equity away to start a project, you pre-sell it and get the money first.

On both Kickstarter and Indiegogo you set a funding goal for how much it will cost you to produce a product and hope that enough people pledge money to meet the goal, and make the dream a reality.

Backers usually receive different rewards depending on the amount they’ve given financially (perhaps a tweet, the product upon release, a Skype call to say thank you etc.)

Funding on Kickstarter is all-or-nothing: projects must reach their goals in order to get the money pledged. If a project is successfully funded, Kickstarter will apply a 5% fee to the funds collected.

Indiegogo works under the exact same basis, with one difference – creators have the option to receive whatever funding was pledged, even if they don’t reach the final goal (with again, a 5% charge).

XU Magazine - DH Business Support Case Study.

Let’s take the guys at XU Magazine as our case study.  Meet the two brothers who were going through their ordinary lives, when one day they saw a gap in the market for their product: a magazine that compiles information about the accounting software Xero and its add ons. It would save Xero Users (usually business owners and accountants) from trawling the internet by providing them with everything they needed to know in the form of a professional and glossy magazine.

XU Magazine - For Xero Users, by Xero Users. Independent Magazine

If it was going to become a reality, the magazine had to be delivered where most of the Xero Users are based. Xero was founded in New Zealand so it has a massive market both there and in Australia, whilst of course the UK and US also have big audiences.

XU Magazine Crowdfunding IndieGoGo

Once calculating the costs and working out profit margins – they set their funding goal on Indiegogo. They told me that marketing on social media was a massive part of the process, getting in touch with people in their target audience and asking whether websites would do articles about the magazine – anything they could do to get the word out.

Negotiating and communicating between all these different time zones meant a lot of work, it was basically a full-time project. They stressed that if you’re a potential project starter you'll have to be prepared to put a lot of time and effort into bringing it all together.

They set themselves 3 weeks to achieve all of the funding, and in two weeks the amount had been reached. They described it to me as a surreal experience seeing thousands of pounds being put towards an idea they’d come up with in their local pub – that this idea really was worthwhile to people and that this crowdfunding thing was actually working!

Creating A Project That Lasts

XU Magazine - Issue 04 Xero Magazine

The guys have just released issue 04 of their quarterly magazine and business is booming! A big question once you’ve created your product is - 'do you want to carry it on?' Was it a one-time thing, or is it something that can keep on growing and producing sales?

If the answer to any of these are yes – then it’s important not to pick a random target, but do the financial work before you get started. Choose a figure that will allow you to keep on growing!

To start a project takes an idea in a pub, to give it a future requires financial foresight, hard work is necessary to produce interest and gain momentum and confidence in the idea is what will pull it all together.

So what are the risks? Only the time it takes trying to make it work.


The Floor's Yours

If you have any questions for the XU Magazine guys regarding Crowdfunding, or anything else - then leave a comment & we'll get some answers from them in a future blog post!

Don't forget to add us on Social Media below for more content like this! As always, see you next week!

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10 Apps That Every Business Owner Needs

10 Apps Every Business Owner Needs

It’s becoming increasingly easy to do everything on your smartphone. Have you ever imagined running your whole business from the palm of your hand though? All you need is something to call, email and access the internet from: and your smartphone can do all of those things. You’re probably even reading this off of yours right now… Hi!

We at DH Business Support love technology and always want to save our clients time on their bookkeeping & invoices. So we point them towards helpful resources that are time efficient!

Get in touch with us about what sort of services we can offer you, but we thought we’d give you a list of our top 10 apps every business owner should have. How many do you have? Share it with your friends on facebook & twitter and see how many they have.

Top 10 Apps For Business Owners

 

1. Evernote

Evernote Logo - Mobile App. Quick web page saver. Bookmarking.

This app is a favourite for many. Evernote is basically a super organiser where you can take notes, store pictures, voice record: everything! It's great for meetings and is kind of like a bookmarker, which is also synced to your desktop. So next time you see something on your phone worth saving, just click the little elephant and it’ll be on your computer the next time you log in!

IOS / ANDROID


2. Dropbox

Dropbox Logo - File storage in the cloud.

Store and share your files in the cloud. Dropbox is popular for a reason! It helps de-clutter all of your files and still leaves you with plenty of memory on your phone. You can store up to 2GB of data on the free version, but can also expand it by inviting friends to sign up or spend a little money for a massive 1000GB of storage.

 IOS / ANDROID


3. Skype

Skype Logo - Instant Messaging & Video Calls.

Meetings on the go! Skype is an instant messaging service, but also is well known for its face-to-face video service too. Don’t be limited to your desktop, meet in a coffee shop or while you’re travelling. You can also share photos and can host group chats with up to 25 people for those of you who have big team meetings with your employees!

IOS / ANDROID


4. Izettle

Izettle Logo - Card transactions easily done through mobile phone.

This one’s great for business owners who will be selling products. The guys behind iZettle want to help small businesses handle card transactions on the go. Their little device allows you to receive cash and card payments by syncing up with your mobile phone. You can create a library of products and prices for easy access and will receive information about which items are performing best. The app is free, once you get the iZettle card reader.

IOS / ANDROID


5. Social Media Channels

Social Media Logos - Post quick and easy.

Don't twiddle your thumbs in your spare time, instead, start posting content to your followers on social media: marketing on the go! Top Tip - Evernote will work great with these!

IOS / ANDROID


6. Wunderlist

Wunderlist - Complete tasks with one click.

Wunderlist has a super simple interface, which makes it easy to choose and complete day to day tasks. Whether something just pops into your head, or is a reoccurring task - add it quickly, organise the big ones and delegate them to others. It's really effective!

IOS / ANDROID


7. Xero

Xero Logo - Beautiful accounting software. In the cloud.

Online accounting software that’s simple, smart and occasionally magical: Xero offers you a real-time view of your cashflow. It also allows you to create fast and easy invoices for a job as soon as you’ve finished it. It’s in the cloud so your accountant can access everything too!

IOS / ANDROID


8. Receipt Bank

Receipt Bank Logo - Mobile App. Take a picture and add it to your online storage. 

Say goodbye to your receipts and say hello to Receipt Bank! It extracts the key information from your bills, receipts and invoices, meaning no more manual data entry. You can then publish the data to your accounting software, download it as a spreadsheet or create your own expense reports. It syncs up to Xero, so both your accounting and bookkeeping are sorted! Get them both!

IOS / ANDROID


9. SWIFTKEY

Swiftkey Logo - Type Quicker. Swipe Instead.

Typing just got quicker! Instead of tapping you can just swipe across the keyboard to your desired letter. It works extremely quickly and also learns to anticipate what you want to type, resulting in even quicker results. Simple but effective!

IOS / ANDROID


10. OfficeSuite

OfficeSuite Logo - Get documents on your phone & mobile.

Create all the documents you need with OfficeSuite. From PDF's to powerpoint - it has it all! The interface is very similar to your desktop so you should feel right at home.

IOS / ANDROID


The Floor's Yours

How many of these apps have you tried? Are there any others that you'd recommend? Let us know in the comment section.

Don't forget to add us on our Social Media Pages below for more content like this! See you next week!


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3 Reality Checks Every Business Owner Will Get

YDLA Award - Entrepeneur DH Business Support David Hassall. 3 Reality Checks Every Business Owner Will Get.

Congratulations!

The Digital Recruitment Company announced this week that our own David Hassall has been shortlisted for the YDLA 'Entrepreneur of the Year' award on September 25th! Congratulations David!

Head over to his twitter and show him some love, but before you do that – we thought we’d sit our Managing Director down and pick his brain about being an ‘Entrepreneur’ seeing as those folk over at The Digital Recruitment Company think so highly of him.


Interview

Q: What was the first big reality check you had as a business owner?

'I quickly realised that owning a business is not all glitz and glamour, but just plain grit. You’ll be so bored of sitting in the office doing menial jobs, or sales, or paperwork and you want to just keep putting those things off – or finish up early. They have to be done, so just push on through and get on with it! It’s an on-going thing, it’ll never go away and just a straight up reality of what owning a business looks like.' 

 

Q: Do any of those experiences change as a business grows?

' (Laughs) Not really, if anything there’s more of it! One thing that stands out for me after being shortlisted for the award, is how being a business owner is painted as this glamorous role - full of freedom, control, success and awards; but that’s just not an accurate representation of what it’s like.

I know many business owners who feel short-changed by the way things are going in their company, myself included at times, because people don't talk about the tough parts - but hopefully this interview will help people get a better perspective.'

 

Q: How do you feel business owners should respond to the demands of working lots of hours?

'It’s a fact: you’ve got to be prepared to sacrifice things. If you’ve agreed with someone that you’ll do something, you’ve got to do it – there’s no two ways about it. It’s your neck on the line! Sometimes it’s an evening; sometimes it’s that yearly holiday.'

'Although I've learnt it's important to keep a good balance – it took me a couple of years of being engrossed in the business until enough was enough and I needed a break. You can't just burn out, like so many do. I came back more motivated and generally worked better. I suppose if you’re managing stuff properly it becomes less of a concern, but that’s a learning curve in itself.'

 

Q: As a Managing Director, where does most of the pressure come from?

'Just the responsibility of it all, I guess. If you have employees you’ve got to remember you’re paying their mortgage as well as yours – so as their boss, you get paid last. If at the end of the month everyone’s been paid and it’s a fiver in your hand, then your job is to not crumble under the pressure but work out solutions instead.

That’s a massive responsibility hanging over you, and I just think - how can you not take that seriously?'

 

Q: DH Business Support began as a family business 5 years ago, how has that shaped things looking back?

'As a family business you have to clearly define the roles, as it’s very personal environment. You have to sit down at the start and talk about them with each other, but those lines can be flexible and change as it progresses. Which it has done, and we're still all happy - so that's good!'

'I think being a business owner can be a lonely world, so I’d always encourage people to start a business with someone else.  Multiple brains work better than one, so find a friend, family member; just someone who can share that enthusiasm you have and who can encourage you to keep going when you don’t feel like it.'

 

Q: Lastly, what would you say are 3 reality checks new business owners need to hear?

1.     It’s going to be hard and boring at times, but just keep on going.

2.     Accept that your responsibilities are massive, take them seriously and instead of crumbling: take time to work out solutions.

3.     Get a partner or start up your business with someone else – so all the above isn’t as hard!


The Floor's Yours

Any questions for David? Ask them in the comments below and let us know your feedback!

Don't forget to get updates on our Social Media Pages below!


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Payroll: Outsource vs In-House

Should I choose In House or Outsource Payroll?

As a small business owner, you may have considered getting someone to do your payroll. Do you bring someone in, or out-source to someone else? Well, we're inviting you to enter the arena, feel the atmosphere, the pressure - we're going to settle this once and for all in the ring.

This bout is for the DH Small Business Seal of Approval. The fight is scheduled for three, two minute rounds.

In the Blue Corner we have Outsource Payroll, well prepared and ready. In the Red Corner, we have In-House Payroll, confident and ready for battle. The bell rings and we're off!

Round 1: Trust

Managing your staff's payroll is important as it can affect their moral if things go wrong. They trust you to make sure their wages and tax deductions are correct and paid on time - and they'll let you know if they think they're not! It also means getting the forms you and HMRC need too. Trust is going to be needed for whoever's managing your payroll.

If you're outsourcing to someone, you'll most likely have to establish trust over time. Lots of variables begin to arise - like expectations and efficient communication. You'll have to research who to go with and have an agreement in place where both sides are happy. Now this isn't impossible, but, with In-house payroll the person you hire will have been interviewed, working within your company and agreed a contract - which gives you peace of mind quickly, in a way that Outsourcing won't.

1st Round Winner: In-House Payroll

Round 2: Price

Outsourcing has to come out swinging in this round and it doesn't disappoint. This is a demolition, a comeback of champions. Outsourcing your payroll can be a massive money saver! You're not paying one person a fixed yearly salary with holiday pay, but instead to a potential TEAM of workers! More knowledge, more time, more people - for the price of less than one person! 

As both sides walk back to the corner at the end of this round, the victor here is clear. As we enter the final round it's everything to play for.

2nd Round Winner: Outsource Payroll

Round 3: Efficiency

With only minutes left of the bout it makes sense we look at which is the most efficient of the two. Whose going to win when it comes to the nitty gritty? Fortunately the past two rounds offer us a great insight into who'll win this one.

As we watched Outsourcing dominate when it comes to price, we saw it lose only narrowly in the first round. Trust can be established, but it takes time. So when we consider efficiency, we also have to consider longevity.

Take us at DH Business Support for example, we're praised for our quick responses and organisation with payroll - we take phone calls from employees and answer any questions they have, whilst producing the forms business owners request. It's literally all done for you. It might take a bit of time to establish the trust, but once that's in place: Outsourcing will always go the distance, with minimal effort on your part, for a fraction of the price!

3rd Round Winner: Outsource Payroll

The Scorecard is in...

As I do my best Bruce Buffer impression and announce that the winner, by split decision is: Out Sourcing Payroll.

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The Floor's Yours:

What would your scorecard say?

What's been your experience with either?

Drop a comment below letting us know! Be sure to read the other posts in our series on The Basics of Business HERE!