Serious Plans Require Serious Preparations: How To Do Business In The UK

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If you are considering starting a brand new business in the UK, you will want to know how to go about this process and how to do business successfully with limited risks and issues. First, we will break down the process of creating a startup, with a specific focus on the legal and financial side, as well as choosing a company name and launching the business. Then, we will give three top tips for conducting business in the UK. With all of this planning and preparation in mind, you stand a great chance of succeeding in your business endeavor and running a successful business in the UK.

Creating A Startup Business

The planning and preparation that goes into creating and launching a startup business in the UK will determine how likely it is to succeed. For this reason, you should ensure that you do so thoroughly to avoid your company being one of the many startups that do not make it past year one of doing business.

There is a lot of useful information online about starting a new business in the UK successfully and planning effectively. Some of the key pieces of advice, as stated on how to set up a business in the UK, include choosing a legal structure for your company, opening a business bank account, and choosing an appropriate and unique name. We will briefly elaborate on these points.


First, you need to work out if you are setting up a limited company, a partnership or whether you are a sole trader. This will have implications on how you pay yourself and how your tax returns work, so ensure you understand the repercussions.

Bank Account

In order to receive and store money and pay its outgoings (including wages), a business needs to have a business bank account. However, as with all of these decisions and caveats, there are several business bank accounts to choose from. You have to select the right service to suit your company, bearing in mind its turnover, frequency of transactions, and other fees.

Company Name

One of the most important steps in creating the perfect startup business geared toward success is choosing a unique and meaningful name. A key tip to keep in mind is that you want to avoid names that are identical or even too similar to other existing companies’ names. There are online search functions where you can see if your proposed company name is available.

Keep in mind that there are some words that are restricted or prohibited to be included in company names for fear of being sensitive or denoting a certain connotation. Moreover, if you are setting up a limited company, its name has to (legally) end in “limited” or “ltd”.

3 Tips For Doing Business In The UK

Now, let’s look at 3 key points for conducting business successfully in the UK once you have created and launched your startup.

1. Be Aware of Business Culture And Work Ethics In The UK

This point is particularly relevant if you are a non-British business person setting up a new company in the UK, as you may not be aware of the cultural and social differences that may affect how people do business. There are several points to note about the business culture in the UK, such as the hierarchy within companies, the importance of teamwork, the fact that business is often conducted outside of the office, for instance at restaurants, and the use of first names is common in UK business settings.

When navigating the British and Northern Irish world of business, you will have to remain polite while using humor, remain professional while joining in with pub culture, and remain respectful while engaging in informal networking. This is a balance you can learn from your colleagues if you are not local. 

If you are from the UK and this all seems second nature to you, a word of advice is not to be over-confident that you understand the business culture. It may be that you have mastered this etiquette from a staff point of view, but that you need to re-calibrate as the boss and business owner.

2. Recruit and Retain Skilled Employees

The United Kingdom has regulations designed to protect employees which is a definite advantage to you as the employer, as well as to the staff. This is because it means you can follow pre-established rules and regulations and rest assured that you are working within the laws and creating a work environment that improves the lives of your team members.

So, when you hire and put together your dream team you can retain these workers by treating them well and making them feel at home. This is all part of creating a solid business culture and maintaining it as you grow.

For hiring, you can use applications such as LinkedIn and Indeed to scout out potential employees and use a headhunter for the more senior roles. Many employment sites will use technology to read through CVs and filter out the ones that do not apply to your roles, making it easier to find the staff you need to build a great, efficient and qualified workforce.

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3. Research The Rules And Regulations Before You Begin

Before you start a new business, you need to ensure you have all of the necessary licenses and qualifications that you need to run the business legally and effectively. Moreover, you will have to look into the insurance regulations and potentially safeguard against more than the bare minimum requirement. Finally, it is very important to look into employment laws in the UK as this is the vital information that will drive how you run your business (legally and without controversy).

This has been a brief and simple look at starting a new business in the UK and conducting your business effectively. We have discussed starting a new business, choosing the structure, opening a bank account, and choosing the name. On top of that, we have given advice on business culture and etiquette in the UK, recruiting and retaining good employees, and knowing about regulations before you get started. If you keep this all in mind, you have a great chance of succeeding in the UK business.

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