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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.

Setting up a grievance procedure - checklist

If your employees want to file a grievance, there should be a fair and clear way to do this. Read our tips on setting up a grievance procedure.

  • Produce a simple, written procedure for employees - written complaint, face-to-face interview, appeal - this should comply with the Acas Code of Practice.
  • Give the name or job title of the person employees should contact in the case of a grievance in the written terms of employment.
  • Encourage employees to handle grievances informally - without triggering your formal grievance procedure if possible - but to take them further if necessary.
  • Tell employees they must present a written grievance to their immediate supervisor as the first step of a formal complaint.
  • Arrange a face-to-face meeting to discuss the complaint in every case. Allow the employee at least three working days' notice to prepare their case.
  • Ensure you respond to any grievance in writing where it is not possible to meet the employee face-to-face (for example, where the employee has already left).
  • Stress the importance of addressing grievances and trying to analyse the root cause of apparently trivial grievances.
  • Decide whether you want to involve an external adviser or body, such as Acas, for grievances which cannot be handled internally.
  • Set rules for handling special cases: for example, if the grievance relates to the supervisor, or is particularly sensitive (eg discrimination).
  • Establish a procedure for addressing collective grievances (eg through a recognised trade union).
  • Set a time limit for producing a written response to any grievance.
  • Provide for confidential interviews, if necessary, particularly where grievances relate to other employees. Clarify the right to be accompanied to the interview (eg by a union representative).
  • If grievances arise in connection with a disciplinary issue, hear them as part of the disciplinary appeal; otherwise keep disciplining separate.
  • Encourage employees to raise legitimate grievances; reassure them that it will be kept confidential and that they will not be victimised as a result.
  • Train managers to discuss grievances openly, calmly and fairly, and to make considered decisions.
  • Explain that the employee has the right to appeal; if possible, any appeal should be heard by someone senior who has not been involved in the initial hearing.
  • Keep simple, confidential records.

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