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We're here with practical information for your business. Learn about business planning, running a business and more.


For a successful business, you need a viable business idea, the skills to make it work and the funding. Discover whether your idea has what it takes.

Forming your business correctly is essential to ensure you are protected and you comply with the rules. Learn how to set up your business.

It is likely you will need funding to start your business unless you have your own money. Discover some of the main sources of start up funding.

Businesses and individuals must account for and pay various taxes. Understand your tax obligations and how to file, account and pay any taxes you owe.

Businesses are required to comply with a wide range of business laws. We introduce the main rules and regulations you must comply with.

Learn why business planning is an essential exercise if your business is to start and grow successfully, attract funding or target new markets.

Marketing matters. It drives sales and helps promote your brand and products. Discover how to market your business and reach your target customers.

Some businesses need a high street location whilst others can be run from home. Understand the key factors from cost to location, size to security.

Your employees can your biggest asset. They can also be your biggest challenge. We explain how to recruitment and manage staff successfully.

It is likely your business could not function without some form of IT. Learn how to specify, buy, maintain and secure your business IT.

Few businesses manage the leap from start up to high-growth business. Learn what it takes to scale up and take your business to the next level.

Making an insurance claim - checklist

Claiming on your insurance can be stressful - but if you follow these steps you can maximise your chances of success

  • Ensure that employees inform you as soon as possible of any breakages, accidents, thefts, legal action against you or other potential claims.
  • Check whether the loss is covered by your insurance policy and that you were complying with any conditions (eg appropriate security measures).
  • Consider whether it is worth claiming, or if the excess you have to pay and the potential increase in renewal premiums outweigh the benefits of claiming.
  • Notify your insurer immediately; ensure that any losses resulting from crime are reported to the police as well (insurers usually ask for a crime reference number in cases of theft).
  • Ask what action you are required to take to minimise further loss; ensure that the insurer approves any action you plan (eg emergency repairs).
  • Keep records of the claim (eg photographs of the damage), initial notification and subsequent communications.
  • Collect all the information required for the claim form; take advice from the insurer or your broker if necessary.
  • Be ready to get estimates for any repairs, or to be visited by the insurer’s loss adjuster who will assess your claim.
  • Claim for the full scale of your loss - for example, emergency cleaning, repairs, replacements and loss of business (if covered).
  • Submit the claim and ask for an estimate of how long the claim process will take; agree a timetable.
  • Be prepared to negotiate your claim; consider appointing your own loss adjuster for large, complex claims whose value is disputed by the insurer.
  • Progress your claim as quickly as possible by providing information whenever required; consider negotiating interim payments if necessary.
  • Review your experience to identify any changes needed to your insurance cover and procedures (eg record-keeping).

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