Five tips for businesses in 2019
Make sure your business gets off to the best possible start this year by following these key tips.
Getting your business off to a great start this year requires extensive planning, dedication to put the time and effort in, and a positive outlook for the year ahead. Here, we provide you and your business with five key tips to help you along the way.
- Map out your business goals
Any successful business year starts with clear, well-defined goals. Focusing on what you want to achieve, documenting it and then setting up an annual, quarterly and monthly plan to achieve those goals is a great way to get your year started.
Throughout the year, the stresses of the day-to-day often get in the way of being able to see the bigger picture. If you have thorough goals, it can remind you and your staff exactly what you are all aiming for. This then starts to feed into your business values and mission statement.
Begin your plan with a SWOT exercise. This useful analysis helps you identify areas your company succeeds in, and areas it could do better in. The acronym stands for Strengths,Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. Going into detail in relation to these four areas is a great way to see where you company stands going into the long year ahead.
After this, ensure your goals are SMART. This means your goals are:
- S– specific
- M– measurable
- A– achievable
- R– relevant
- T– time-bound
Having SMART goals ensures that the goals are not too vague and your company is able to quickly identify any missed targets. In addition to this, progress is easier to monitor.
- Be adaptable
If 2018 taught business owners anything, it was the need to be adaptable. The ever-changing business and political landscape means that business owners are having to use ingenuity to continue to succeed.
2019 will be no different. A good business in the current climate is a business that can change and conform to the latest standards on a nearly real-time basis. This calls for an increased emphasis on developing an understanding of the idea of flexibility and adaptability, in all parts of your business – from HR, marketing and IT, to the board room.
We are seeing leaders in the business community succeeding through their ability to:
- Think creatively
- Quickly be able to shift focus
- Embrace change
- Exercise emotional intelligence
The ability to adapt in certain commercial situations determines your level of flexibility — and possibly the heights you are able to achieve in the forthcoming year. If you have the ability to adapt in your industry, you may already be one up on your competitors.
- Embrace Video Content
It’s safe to say that business leaders are touting 2019 as the year of the video. In a recent survey across multiple sectors, a question was put to clients:
Where both text and video are available on the same web page, how would you prefer to learn about a product or service?
80% video, 20% text
Video has, of course, been a vital weapon in any company’s marketing arsenal for a while now, but 2019 is shaping up to be a video takeover. According to Cisco’s Visual Networking Index, global consumer internet video traffic will account for 80 percent of all consumer internet traffic this year.
There are also now ways for businesses to embrace video without necessarily hiring costly videographers. Mobile phones are now at the cutting edge of high definition cameras, and platforms like Facebook, Instagram and YouTube mean that consumers are more used to seeing footage that is not necessarily studio quality.
Some videos trends to look out for this year are:
- An explosion of video on website
- Video in email
- Live video on social platforms
- Native video (direct to Facebook/YouTube)
- 360-degree videos
Ensure you are catering to the 80% that said they would prefer video over this coming year.
- Health and Wellbeing in the workplace
Another area that is set to grow further in 2019 is health and wellbeing. 2018 saw the wellness world expand. People started having more open and honest conversations about mental health, working conditions, inequality and workplace biases.
For your company to succeed in an environment where both workers and consumers are becoming more self-aware around wellbeing issues, business owners have to being thinking about their own business values, and possibly reassess how they carry out their day-to-day work.
Apple recently announced its “best of 2018” and listed self-care as the trend of the year. We believe this trend will continue into 2019, as more people realise that self-care is now essential, not an indulgence. And one dimension of self-care that has definitely been on the rise in the workplace is mindfulness practices. It’s being offered at some of the world’s biggest companies to cut workplace stress and boost productivity.
Ensure you keep a keen eye on both your staff’s, but also your own, mental wellbeing. A healthy business owner breeds a healthy business.
- Apply for R&D Tax Credits
Our fifth and final tip for your business in 2019 is one that we have been shouting from the rooftops for a while. In the uncertainty of the following year it is now more important than ever for companies to be prudent with their tax relief efforts. Particularly when it comes to tax relief as a government incentive.
R&D tax credits, or research and development tax credits, were created in 2000 by the UK government to help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) invest in innovation. This is due to the UK government wanting businesses to flourish and compete on a global scale.
The relief works by either reducing a company’s liability to corporation tax or by making a direct payment to the company.
The research and development has to be focussed on advancing industry level knowledge. If the research could be carried out by a reasonably competent professional in that particular field, you may have trouble convincing HMRC of the validity of the claim.
Since the tax relief was introduced in 2000, an incredible £21.4bn has been claimed by UK businesses. On average, an SME’s claim is equal to almost £54,000 – not a sum to be sniffed at.
How can rdtaxcredit.org.uk help?
At rdtaxcredit.org.uk, we understand that beginning to think about claiming R&D Tax Credits may be a little daunting. We want to help you through the process, to ensure you receive the financial reward that the government wants to give you. Especially in this current climate where every penny counts.
Our expert team of accountants are committed to working with you and your company to provide strategic R&D tax credit advice. We can review your claim and propose new techniques to ensure you claim the maximum amount you are entitled to.
We offer a friendly and professional approach to R&D Tax Credits which includes:
- A free no obligation initial review.
- 100% success rate
- 30 day quick turnaround
We also provide extensive information on our website should you wish to research R&D Tax Credits in further detail. We have information relating to individual industries such as:
- Audio and Visual
- Building Technologies
- Commercial Printing
- Creative Digital and Media
- Food and Beverage
- Manufacturing and Engineering
- Motor Racing
- Software Development
- Web Development
If you would like to contact one of our experts for free initial advice, complete the quick enquiry form to receive a no-obligation review of your R&D Tax Relief claim.