Find useful resources to help you on your enterprise journey.
The Beginner's Guide to Starting a UK Business can help you decide if you have what it takes to be your own boss.
If you're still searching for a business idea, try these TED talks included in the playlist Where do Ideas Come From?.
Starting your own business
- A series of 'bite-sized' videos on self employment are available on the HMRC's YouTube channel
- Gov.uk's Working For Yourself talks you through the different options for setting yourself up as a sole trader or limited company, and what you need to know.
- The Ready Reckoner calculator tool is available on Gov.uk's website to work out how much money you need to set aside for National Insurance /Tax.
- The British Library run a series of workshop packages on everything you need to know to help you start, launch and grow your business.
- Business Pitch competition via the portal and compete to win up to £1,500, and advice and support for your new business.
- Startups is an invaluable resource for up to date articles on entrepreneurship hot topics and news. It also contains 62 detailed guides on how to start a business in popular industries.
- If you are considering a Pop Up shop, read this handy guide to Setting up a Retail Pop-Up in London.
- Enterprise Nation is a great resource for all things linked to setting up a business.
- IP & Research help can be found at Cracking Ideas
Coding or development (app and web) support
- The Launchpad is a creative development agency focused on the rapid iteration of prototypes, apps and technology products. Founded by University of Surrey Student Enterprise alumnus, this is an affordable option for testing your idea and/or developing your tech product. Get in touch with Arun for a free exploratory conversation about what you might need and how he can help. firstname.lastname@example.org, 07447447652.
Business plan templates
- Business Plan Template part 1 is a simple business plan to get you started.
- Business Plan template part 2 expands part 1 and allows you to add more detailed information such as a marketing plan, financials and operational detail.
- GrantTree offers a guide to StartUp Funding covering various options including investors, crowdfunding, grants and even tax breaks.
Managing your money (business and personal)
- Student Enterprise runs finance workshops including Introduction to Business Banking; Good use of company assets, taking dividends and protecting shareholders; Financial forecasts; Revenue models; Sources of finance
- For your personal finances you can find plenty of help from Save the Student: Best money resources for students - Save the Student
Marketing and branding
- 99 Design Small Business Resource Centre provides information and tips about branding and entrepreneurship.
Legal and accountancy
TWM solicitors offers free group sessions on the legal basics of starting a business but also one to one sessions to discuss your own business issues. Contact email@example.com for dates and booking in.
Companies House incorporates and dissolves limited companies, registers the information companies are legally required to supply, and makes that information available to the public.
The Law Society's Lawyers For Your Business (LFYB) scheme is aimed a people setting up or running a small or medium sized business, and provides an initial free session to help you to understand the basics or help with a particular task. These could include:
- Setting up your new company or partnership, or advising you on taking up a franchise;
- Buying, selling or renting premises;
- Collecting debts;
- Drawing up a standard employment contract for your employees;
- Drawing up standard terms of trade, or a specific contract for a major piece of work;
- Advising you on protecting your rights to new ideas and designs;
- Acting for you in a legal dispute, and if you have to go to court;
The initial free session will also give you an idea of whether you need any extra legal help and how much it would cost. Make sure you prepare in advance for subsequent meetings; draw up a written agenda and give your solicitors clear instructions about what you want done.
Getting an accountant to help with the accounting, tax and finance issues should be able to save a start-up business more time and money than the cost of the accountancy fees.
- Current students at the University of Surrey can book a free introductory session to speak to Elaine White our IP Manager here if they have a question about their IP
- The Gov.uk Intellectual Property Office offers a guide and e-learning tool on intellectual property and how to create a viable business opportunity from your idea.
- The IP Tools for Universities on the Gov.uk website is an accredited e-learning tool to help students and lecturers understand intellectual property rights.
- Read through the Gov.uk guides to registering, protecting and applying for patents, trademarks and copyrights.
- Venner Shipley LLP has a detailed resources page with information and advice on IP.
- Enactus Surrey is our campus social enterprise society that students can join to gain entrepreneurial skills
- Gov.uk has a guide on setting up a social enterprise.
- Social Enterprisee UK offers support and resources to those working as or wanting to support social enterprises Home | Social Enterprise UK
- The Can network offers advice and office space.
- i-Genius is a worldwide network for social entrepreneurs providing training, services and news.
- School of Social Entrepreneurs offers courses to help individuals start, sustain and scale social enterprises, charities and community projects.
- UnLtd is a charity that supports social entrepreneurs on their journey.
- The Social Good Guides are a collection of subject specific guides created for 'startup changemakers' and authored by experts.
- A resource by Charity Excellence on the difference between setting up as a charity or a community interest company (CIC)
Becoming a freelancer/contractor during or after university
- Contractor UK is an IT contractor community with advice and information about starting out as a contractor.
- CareerLancer offers advice on how to become a freelancer in a range of areas such as Music Production, Journalism, IT Programming, Web Development, Engineering & Manufacturing, Graphic Design & Multimedia, and many more.
For other opportunities to develop your employability and explore careers and placements with established companies, see the Employability and Careers website.
Please note: Student Enterprise at University of Surrey does not recommend or endorse any particular loan or service. Please think carefully before deciding to take on a loan or service which would incur a financial commitment or penalty.