Setting up your own small business is no simple feat. It requires a lot of time, effort, financial investment and determination. From the planning process where you decide on brand basics, such as a company name, logo and colour scheme through to product development, production, market research, marketing campaigns, advertising and sorting out shipping options. Once you’ve finally launched your products or services, you may well feel like it’s time to kick up your feet and relax. You deserve it, after all. Unfortunately, however, you need to protect your assets and reputation now. This is where you should focus the bulk of your energy. You don’t want your business to fall flat at the first sign of trouble now, do you? So, remember that it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Here are some brilliant ways to protect your business from all sorts of potential threats.
Commercial Business Insurance
You insure all sorts of things in your personal life: your property, your belongings and even your life. So why wouldn’t you do the same for your business? Get the correct commercial insurance right off the bat to avoid complications with changing policies for the better deals or coverage later down the line. Opt for a company with an all-inclusive risk management strategy, as this will check through all policies available to ensure that you are adequately covered against all potential risks. You need to always be in compliance with the ever-changing rules and regulations in the business world, and a reliable insurance company will ensure that you never fall out of line. Not only can you ensure your business itself, but you should consider protecting your employees and assets too. Signing up to the best policy can save you hundreds of thousands in the long run. So don’t delay.
Have Health and Safety Covered
Health and safety violations cost numerous businesses huge sums of money every single year. There are so many places that accidents can happen that you may find the sheer magnitude of effectively implementing health and safety regulations to be overwhelming. But don’t worry. With effective planning, organisation and a few pieces of sage advice, you’ll sort it out in a relatively short amount of time. This can save you a fortune in court costs and claims for irresponsible conduct and breach health and safety laws. Here are some areas to focus on.
Employee Health and Safety
Let’s start at home. You need to make sure that any individual working for you or within your commercial space is fully aware of health and safety regulations and are kept up to date with any changes or updates. The easiest way to do this is to endorse a health and safety training day before the commencement of any contract. This can take place in a classroom setting or on the job on the shop floor. If you have more than one employee, the first option is probably best, as you won’t be able to keep an eye on multiple people at all times. Make use of slideshows, videos and examples while teaching. Include information on fire regulations and procedure (including types of extinguishers and how to use them, the location of fire alarms and meeting points following evacuation). You should also ensure that all staff members know the location of health and safety signage, such as wet floor signs, and how to use them properly. Also, include instructions on how to lift heavy goods properly. It’s also a good idea to give all of your staff members basic first aid training. This will give them a broader knowledge on how to deal with injured, sick or hurt customers as well as other colleagues and themselves. You should also guarantee that your staff aren’t overworked, so fill your rota in in advance, ensuring that everyone gets sufficient rest between shifts and nobody has excessively long shifts.
Customer Health and Safety
You need to take certain precautions to ensure that your customers are as safe as possible while shopping or browsing in your store. Remember that everyone entering your store may not be an adult too, so scour the place from ceiling to floor when looking for potential dangers. A good place to start is making a designated place for all of your cleaning products. These are necessary to clean any spills, toilets and other areas of the store. However, they are hazardous products and if left out they could come into contact with people’s eyes, skin, or even be consumed. So make sure they are always safely locked away. If cleaning is taking place during store opening hours, you need to make sure that everyone is made aware of trip hazards such as wires from cleaning appliances.
Protect Your Intellectual Property
You’ve put a whole lot of thought, effort and financial investment into bringing your brand to life. It’s likely that you’ve done market research to work out your colour scheme, employed the help of a graphic designer to create your logo and spent hours mulling over the best name and tagline for your company. So you don’t want someone else to easily profit from all of your hard work. But not to worry. You can put protective measures in place that make all of these aspects of your work exclusive to you. Trademarking and copyrighting may seem like they’d entail a lot of complicated legal work, but the process is actually surprisingly simple! All you need to do is browse the list of copyrighted names and intellectual property and check that nobody else has already laid claim to your idea. If it’s free, then snap it up quick! Send off an application and the rights to it should be yours in next to no time. This will mean that nobody else can use any aspect of your copyrighting brand without your explicit permission. You will be able to take legal action against anyone who uses any of your work without your permission.
Following this advice will protect you, your company and your assets from potential threats at all angles. So make sure that you start laying down protocol and precautionary measures as soon as possible.