Starting your own business is exciting, risky, hard work and scary (especially if you’re giving up a full-time job in order to launch your own company), but at the same time it can be tremendously fulfilling as well as profitable.

According to the latest figures, the number of UK start-ups is booming – in 2016 there were a record-breaking 657,790 new businesses. In East Hertfordshire alone there were nearly 4,500 new businesses, which is terrific news for the local economy.

If you have a really good business idea and are determined to help break start-up records in 2018, there are a number of organisations you can turn to for support, mentoring and training to enhance your chances of becoming a success. We’ve taken a look at some of their advice:

Business plan

Entrepreneur.com has published a number of useful articles on how to write a business plan, letting you know what kind of information you need to include, including financial information, competitor analysis and a development plan.

Start-up loan

If you’ve been trading for less than two years, you could qualify for a government-backed start-up loan between £500 and £25,000 as an unsecured personal loan with a fixed interest rate of 6%. Applicants are offered free support and guidance with writing a business plan and, if your loan is successful, you’ll qualify for up to 12 months’ free mentoring.

Training

Although you will be starting a business to do something you not only enjoy but also do well, there are inevitably many processes and procedures you’ll have to follow, whether it’s registering your company, coping with the day-to-day finances, marketing and social media etc. In Hertfordshire, entrepreneurs can take advantage of free or low-cost training courses run by Wenta, an organisation that provides support to start-up entrepreneurs across the county.

Staffing

It may well be that you need to employ staff members, either from the outset or as you start to expand. If you’ve never recruited before, you’ll need to find out about your obligations as an employer, as well as advice on managing your new staff. The government website for small businesses has a section on recruiting and hiring providing comprehensive advice and a support helpline.

Accounts

Whilst it’s possible to set up your own business on your own, there are compelling reasons to use professional help wherever possible, especially when it comes to doing the small business accounts. We can help you with tax returns, VAT registration, shareholders’ agreements and even payroll to ensure that you don’t make mistakes that could prove costly in the long run.