Home Business Booms in the UK – 5 Tips on Working From Home
The majority of businesses in the UK are run from home, according to new research. There are currently 2.5 million home business owners operating across the UK. This represents 52% of the total number of UK small businesses and 8% of the UK’s total workforce, finds a study by insurer Direct Line for Business (DL4B).
The analysis highlights an evolving UK workforce which has developed in a challenging and uncertain economic environment, according to the company. It adds that millions of people are choosing to take control of their future, achieving a better work-life balance and turning a potential hobby into a career by using an increasingly digital, mobile and flexible business landscape.
The research shows that when asked about how these home business owners prioritised key actions when they first became operational, sorting out tax, small business accounting and insurance topped the list of concerns.
With so many home businesses popping up around the UK we decided to provide you with some tips for working from home.
1. Structure is Key: Casual clothing and flexible working hours are probably a couple of reasons why you started your home business in the first place. But structure is very important, especially because of all the distractions that can come about from being in your home. Setting some goals for your day (and meeting them!) is a great way to feel like you are achieving something! Structure will not only help you to be disciplined but will allow people to know when you are and aren’t available.
2. Maintain a Separate Work Space: Even if you only have limited space, it is important to create a designated work area. It will help you focus and also overcome conflicts with family members who need to use the home phone or computer too.
3. Know When to Leave the ‘Office’: It can be tempting to want to work 24/7 and it’s easy to do when you love what you’re doing. And with modern technology there is the advantage of everyone having instant access to one another. That’s when you need to set boundaries. I know a small business owner who turns off the email function on her phone so that she only reads emails in her planned office hours. This works well for her as she doesn’t want the constant pull of checking and replying to emails when she is with her family.
4. Take Some Leisure Time: Remember to put some time aside to do something you enjoy – other than work! Taking some time out to play a round of golf or engage in your hobby of choice will revitalise you.
5. Keep on Top of Your Finances: Whether you are self employed or not, it is important to feel like your finances are under control. In order to do this, you need to get some accounting software in place and start using it!
Cash flow is one of the biggest challenges facing small businesses, and using accounting tools early will help you to get a grasp on your business finances from the beginning. It is important to get an accounting system that you understand, that is easy to use and saves you time. On top of all that, it will make life so much easier for your accountant!
Cashflow Manager’s unique columns make it very easy to use and everything stays on your screen so it is much easier to review than other programs. This means you can quickly and easily take care of your finances yourself, or if you use a bookkeeper, it makes it easy to check! Even if you don’t do your books yourself it is definitely important to understand what is going on in your business.