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  • 7 Smart Side Business Ideas in the UK Jan 16, 2019 at 1:09 AM

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    In 2018 there were over five and a half million small businesses in the UK.

    Of those, over four million were 'non-employing businesses'. This essentially means most people set up a business just for themselves but still continue to enjoy healthy revenue.

    If you're looking for business ideas in the UK to implement then here are some suggestions to get you started.

    Diversify Your Income with Multiple Business Ideas in the UK
    Why do celebrities have so much money? Sure they have fame to help, but it's also because they earn revenue from multiple sources. For example, Jeff Foxworthy's net worth is huge and comes from tours, books, appearances and more.

    The more income streams you have, the less risk you have and the greater your chances of success. Start with one and build from there.

    1. Start Blogging
    There are already countless blogs out there so why should you start one? Simple, no-one has your personality or life experience. All blogs are unique and all you need to do is find a niche to call your own.

    Brands will pay or even send you free items that are relevant to your blog.

    2. Take Your Skills Online
    In the gig economy, there are countless ways to offer your services and be paid for it.

    It doesn't even have to be your main job. From teaching guitar to financial advice, anything is possible.

    3. Walk Dogs
    This one seems too good to be true but people frequently make the pet commitment and realize they can't keep up.

    If you work from home or don't mind looking after a pup in the evenings or weekends then this is an easy way to make money.

    4. Offer Data Analytics Services
    From Google analytics to tracking social media campaigns, everything on the internet runs on data. And many people hate dealing with it.

    If you love data you could take the burden off many small businesses while also helping them improve their services.

    5. Bicycle Repairs
    More cycle lanes are built in the UK every year as people choose to be healthier and more environmentally friendly.

    Ironically, the majority of them will not have the tools or know-how to fix their bike if something goes wrong. If you enjoy tinkering away this could be a fun side gig that earns decent money.

    6. Make Your Own Jewellery
    The explosion of online retailing has given rise to many people creating their own brands and styles.

    If you've always loved crafting and working with new materials then consider this. You get to work from home and create items you find beautiful. Often, people love the handmade qualities and the fact that the piece they are buying is unique and one-of-a-kind.

    7. Mobile Coffee Bar
    Commercial cafes have come under fire for their burnt-tasting coffees and low quality.

    If you love coffee and have a taste for the different types then try this side-business. It takes a small investment in a good machine and your own discerning taste. Then you park up in areas people don't normally have access to coffee and enjoy some good conversation.

    Follow Your Passions
    There are endless business ideas in the UK being tried out every day. Whatever you love doing can make you money.

    So do some soul searching and make it happen. You'll be amazed at what can happen.

    From growing your business to more advice, check out our other blog posts.
  • Employee Hiring: 9 Great Ideas for a New Employee Welcome Kit Jan 3, 2019

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    The average UK worker changes employers every five years.

    In the US it's even less, where US workers tend to move on after just over four years with the same company. And in fact, 30 percent of US workers now change jobs every 12 months.

    These kinds of statistics can be troubling for employers. High employee turnover rates can harm productivity. And the process of hiring new workers can be time-consuming and expensive.

    One way to make new employees feel welcome from the start is with a great onboarding kit. Giving them a positive first impression of the company might make them think twice about switching employers down the line. And, a welcome kit also makes sure they're well-informed and prepared, meaning they'll get to work faster.

    Read on to find out what you should include in your new employee welcome kit.

    1. Team Welcome Letter
    Don't underestimate the value of a friendly welcome letter signed on behalf of the whole team. It's these kinds of personal touches which can have a huge impact on a new employee and make them feel part of the team before they even start work.

    If your new recruit has a mentor, get them to write the letter as a way to introduce themselves. If not, a friendly team member is another great option. And, while a typed letter is fine, a handwritten card or note shows more care and effort.

    2. Reusable Water Bottle
    Following calls to find alternatives to disposable items, 'single-use' was 2018's word of the year. If your office has taken this message on board and has phased out plastic cups by the water cooler, we salute you.

    One way to reinforce your company's eco-friendly values is to provide new workers with reusable water bottles. You might also want to take this opportunity to remind new employees about workplace energy-saving measures.

    Branded water bottles work particularly well as a welcome gift. A branded bottle will make your new recruit feel like an instant team member. And, if they happen to use their bottle outside of work, it won't hurt to get some free advertising too!

    3. Office Map and Directory
    An office map is essential in any new employee welcome pack. And, the more detailed the better.

    Make sure it includes the basics such as fire exits, bathrooms, and other essential locations your new staff member will need to know. But, it's also a great idea to include information about which departments sit where and everyone's name. This will make life easier for your new employee and help them avoid potential misunderstandings.

    As well as the layout of the office, it's good to include a directory as part of the map. This should include contact information for all staff members, as well as a brief overview of the company's staff structure. This way your new team member will know how their team is organized and who they report to.

    4. Day Planner
    A new job means new routines and lots of new things to remember. One way to help your new employee keep track of dates, deadlines and meetings is to give them a day planner in their onboarding kit.

    They'll find it invaluable to have a planner to note down important company dates and information in while they go through orientation. And, since the physical act of writing things down helps us remember details, it means they'll be more likely to take in what you tell them, making for a much more productive team member.

    5. Stationery Supplies
    Even workers in the most high-tech offices need a notepad, pen and Post-It notes from time to time.

    Providing stationery essentials like these in your onboarding package will help your new recruit feel prepared. And, it means they won't have to waste time trying to find office supplies when they need them or bring in their own stationery from home.

    6. IT Hardware
    Likewise, your new employee welcome kit should include all the technological equipment they'll need to do their job.

    This will either include a monitor, keyboard and mouse, or a laptop. Extras such as a USB stick and a mouse pad are always useful too.

    And, make sure to include a MacBook air keyboard cover. Your new recruit is sure to appreciate the colorful keyboard cover designs for brightening up their desk. Plus, it ensures that they treat your equipment with care from day one.

    7. Compensation and Benefits Information
    Information about pay and holidays is sure to come in very useful for your new recruit. Plus, by providing it in their welcome pack, they can avoid having to feel awkward about requesting it.

    Include information about their salary or hourly rate and when they can expect their first paycheck. If the job includes benefits such as discounts or an expense account, let them know these details too. And, make sure to give them information about how much vacation allowance they have, as well as when they can start using it and the procedure for requesting time off.

    8. Fun Welcome Gift
    As well as useful tools and important information, your onboarding kit should include at least one fun gift.

    It doesn't have to be expensive but ideally it shouldn't be work-related. That said, you can consider a gift which ties in with your company's field or mission.

    For example, if you're a fitness company, an activity tracker is a great way to show you care about your new recruit's health and want to encourage them to keep active while they work. Or, if you're a travel company, this extra gift could be a passport holder or a desk globe.

    9. First Week Schedule
    Last but not least, your new hire is sure to appreciate a schedule of their first week on the job as part of their welcome kit.

    The first few days in a new job can be confusing to say the least. Take some of the pressure off your new employee by providing them with a detailed plan of where they need to be and when for their first week. This way they'll have a better idea of when they need to sign various documents, where their 3 pm meeting is, and when they can take lunch.

    Great Ideas for Your New Employee Welcome Kit
    For a great new employee welcome kit, it's important to combine useful items, valuable information and a hint of personality.

    This way your new recruit will feel prepared, welcomed and a lot less overwhelmed in their first week or so. And, by showing that you've considered their needs from the offset, you'll also create an instant positive connection between your company and your new team member.

    And, if you're thinking of taking on a lot more than just one new recruit, check out these tips for building your dream team as you expand your business.

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