While it is often overshadowed by the importance of commercial growth and performance, compliance with British laws and regulations remains extremely crucial. This is a challenge that has come into focus recently, with Google Glass business users being urged to ensure that they comply fully with existing data protection laws.
This is just one of the many compliance issues facing small business owners, however, as concepts such as health and safety, taxation and building regulations must be given careful attention at all times. If you fail to do this, you could impede your businesses long-term growth and ultimately cost you significant sums of money.
3 Key Compliance Issues Facing Small Businesses
With this in mind, it is worth identifying the most prominent compliance issues facing small business owners, and look at the solutions that they can employ to effectively protect their venture. Consider the following: –
1. Your Chosen Business Model and Taxation
As a small business, there are a number of potential business models and tax structures that you can implement. These options will each impact the amount that you are forced to pay in corporation tax and national insurance contributions, and while some are suited to independent contractors others are more beneficial for independent ventures that employ a number of people. It is important that you carefully consider your infrastructure before registering with HMRC, as this will ensure that you can comply with national tax legislation without compromising on the amount that you are forced to repay annually. You should start by making a clear distinction in terms of your commercial model, and decide whether you are going to operate as a limited company or a sole trader.
2. Health and Safety in the Workplace
As a business leader, it is also crucial that you pay attention to prevailing health and safety regulations in the workplace. This is a key consideration for small business owners; as though it often requires a significant investment the potential cost of non-compliance can dramatically outweigh this and undermine the future of your venture. This is especially true if an employee suffers an accident or long-term injury in the workplace, as the cost of paying compensation or settling the potential dispute out of court can exceed thousands of pounds and drastically diminish your resources. There is also the issue of your professional reputation, which can be irreparably damaged by non-compliance or serious accidents in the workplace.
3. Create an Empowering and Comfortable Working Environment
On a final note, there is also a pressing need for small business owners to create an empowering and comfortable workplace for their staff. Although you may not consider this to be an issue of compliance, there are in fact laws which regulate the temperatures that you should set in your offices during the months of summer and winter. If you take the former as an example, it is crucial that you invest in an effective cooling or air condition system from a reputable supplier such as Pure Air Conditioning, as this will help you to create an empowering environment while also remaining compliant with national laws. You should keep this in mind at all times, as it only takes a single complaint to cause significant issues within your firm.