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Keep your Business Start Up Costs Low

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 18 Jan 2016 | comments*Discuss
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Rather like holidays and weddings, setting up a recruitment business can cost whatever money you are prepared to spend. So you can have a last minute weekend in Paris or a five-star all expenses paid fortnight in the Maldives; a low key, romantic country wedding or an ‘invite everyone you’ve ever met and give them matching doves’ type wedding. So too can you set up a recruitment business that does not put you in debt for the next five years (and then some) and yet still manages to compete with the big boys. Here are some tips on how to do it.

Business Funding

There is plenty of business funding available, although you need to make sure you look at the small print to understand what is required in exchange for the money. You may find that you would prefer to struggle through or use an overdraft or credit facility rather than hand over a percentage of future profits, for example. The government-funded operations Business Link is a good place to start, not only can they offer some funding, depending on your area, but they can also advise on potential marketing opportunities, such as foreign investment and international expansion.

Working from Home

A simple way to keep costs down, especially in the early days of your recruitment business, is to work from home. Try to have a separate area in your home for work – ideally a spare room, but even an area of the lounge where you will not be disturbed is fine. You will be able to off set a proportion of your home running costs, too, but check with an accountant for clarification specific to your circumstances.

With working from home you will need to allow some money for meeting clients as it is unlikely to be appropriate for them to come to your house, unless you have a separate office. It is perfectly acceptable to make client visits to their offices – you can legitimately say that you need to see their office environment – and you can arrange to interview candidates in the foyer of a good local hotel.

Virtual Office

If you are working from home, you may still choose to pay a small monthly fee to have a virtual office. This service is available all over the country and they offer a mail forwarding and telephone answering service, some also provide office spaces for conducting meetings and interviews. This is especially good if you live in a rural area or have an address like ‘Rosebud Cottage’ which really doesn’t sound very professional. Also, if you have young children that may answer the home phone, it is better to have a receptionist instead!

PR vs. Advertising

Advertising is expensive, but PR is free! Rather than spend your time placing adverts to promote your recruitment business, invest in building PR contacts and planting stories instead. Start with your local paper, build up to the recruitment trade press and even think about uploading your press releases onto the PR sites popular with journalists. It is also worth trying to get PR with national press and lifestyle magazines – they are always looking for people to tell their story, just make it interesting, positive and relevant to the publication.

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I am a plumber to trade ,work in pipefitting now and my partner works in he and business accounts ,want to try start a recruitment agency for a range of professions ,or construction, secatary etc ,can you help ,how do weget noticed and employes plus contracts with firms
jd - 18-Jan-16 @ 6:08 PM
Hi. I'm interested in setting up a recruitment business and im trying to find out how the wage/tax/payments work? Would I pay the worker then invoice the company? Do I need to pay the workers tax and national insurance? thanks for any help. andy
laney666 - 13-Jun-11 @ 6:45 PM
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