Member News & Events



A virtual Job Fair – information for employers

Live Job Fair : 12th July until 11th September.

Many virtual job fairs are well considered in principle but are often only accessible or visible for a few hours or a day. Whilst any exposure is valuable, this may not be enough to support job seekers and employers particularly as furlough benefit schemes etc. change in the coming weeks. 

The Daily Echo virtual Job Fair will be the first of its kind in terms of its scale, presence and reach. They have committed significant resource and editorial backing for this project which will provide local employers an unprecedented and *free (*free for 4 weeks and a small charge after that if they wish another 4 weeks) access to the Daily Echo audience, which delivers reach across print and online of 9 out of 10 adults.

How the virtual fair will work:

·         Up to 30 employers will have an opportunity to feature their vacancies for a 4 week period in an dedicated and highly visible area of the Daily Echo website, accessed via a number of ways.

·         Each business will have their company brand, contact details and headline job title which then links through to a short video (which they can do on a smart phone) which outlines the job and the company ethos – very much bringing the piece to life.

·         The virtual fair will be accessible from a prominent display ad on the home and news page which will remain fixed for the duration and a link on the jobs page itself. By keeping the message visible they can attract more job seekers (active and passive) and make it easier to signpost.

·         They will also use Facebook each week during the course of the campaign to showcase specific companies and their respective vacancies

The Daily Echo is also making space for partners and providers who are in a position to provide free services to include CV writing and career advice. 

More Information can be found HERE.

Companies who have vacancies should email cheryl.barrett@dorsetecho.co.uk with the following information by Monday 6th July.

In the subject field please reference: Virtual Job Fair vacancy

Company logo supplied as JPEG

Business name, address and postcode

Contact detail including phone number

Job title being featured

Video no more than 3 minutes long

The Fair will kick off with an in paper and online press launch and then remain live until the 11th September.

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Income Tax Deferral – from Taylorcocks

If you are due to make a payment on account of Income Tax on 31st July 2020 then you have the option to defer the payment until 31st January 2021.


You can defer the payment due on 31st July if you complete a tax return and you are struggling to make the payment due to the impact of the COVID-19 crisis. This is an automatic deferral, so does not need to be applied for, but you can still make the payment by 31st July if you are able to do so.

The income tax will be payable by 31st January 2021 and there will be no interest or penalties for deferring the payment, provided it is paid by 31st January 2021.It is worth remembering that on 31st January 2021 you will be paying, in addition to any deferred Income Tax, the balancing payment in relation to 2019/20 and the first payment on account for 2020/21. So if you do defer the July payment, then you could be paying a whole years tax liability at the same time.

If you are struggling to pay taxes generally then it is possible to agree on an instalment plan with HMRC to spread the payments, but there will be an interest charge for late payments.If you require any support on this, please contact your TC adviser today on 0330 088 7111.

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COVID-19 Information for Hospitality & Tourism Businesses from BCP Council

We’re looking forward to helping you prepare to re-open your business and operate from 4th July

The new government guidance to help you plan to re-open hospitality and tourism businesses has now been released and comes in to effect from 4 July 2020.

Working safely during COVID-19 sector guidance:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19

List of businesses able and not able to open from 4th July:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/opening-certain-businesses-and-venues-in-england- from-4-july-2020

Guidance for people who work in or run restaurants, pubs, bars, cafes or takeaways: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/5eb96e8e86650c278b077616/Kee ping-workers-and-customers-safe-during-covid-19-restaurants-pubs-bars- takeaways-230620.pdf

Guidance for people who work in hotels and guest accommodation, indoor and outdoor attractions, and business events and consumer shows: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/the- visitor-economy

Guidance for people who work in or run hotels and other guest accommodation:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/hotels- and-other-guest-accommodation

Guidance for people who provide close contact services, including hairdressers, barbers, beauticians, tattooists, sports and massage therapists, dress fitters, tailors and fashion designers:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/close- contact-services

UK Hospitality is preparing guidance to help prepare COVID-19 Risk Assessments: https://www.ukhospitality.org.uk/page/coronavirus

Free webinar to help businesses keep a safe record of customers visiting their premises as part of the NHS ‘Track and Trace’ system, in accordance with the new guidelines:

 https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/gdpr-guidance-for-hospitality-venues-when- recording-customer-contact-data-tickets-110988401296

Over the coming week BCP Council will be issuing further support and guidance from our local agencies including Licencing, Police and Fire services to help your business to re-open and recover. Please continue to check back for updates.

Good luck with your re-opening plans.

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Small Business Accelerator initiative for SME’s

Enterprise Nation is delighted to announce a partnership with Amazon to deliver the Amazon Small Business Accelerator, a major support package for 200,000 small businesses across the UK. Being a valued community member of Enterprise Nation, you are first to hear that from today, you’re able to join this new programme! Sign-up for free to take a quick diagnostic plan and find the e-learning path that best fits your business!

Why Sign Up?

> Diagnostic

Take a quick and easy business diagnostic to find the support best tailored to your needs. 

> Online learning

Access e-learning from experts, with modules on social media marketing, selling on Amazon, accounting, hiring and more. 

> Week-long bootcamps

Apply to take part in a week-long intensive training bootcamp and access ongoing support to help your existing business start trading online quickly.

  These will be run across different business sectors including: 

  • Beauty & Wellbeing
  • Food & Drink
  • Service based businesses
  • Home, leisure, gadgets & gifts
  • Fashion

> Other exclusive benefits 

By joining the programme you can access a bundle of business offers worth over £2,000.

SIGN UP HERE

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BCTC Local Government Affairs Meeting (LGA) June 2020

The LGA was very well attended and we were delighted to welcome the Leader of the Council, Cllr Vikki Slade and CEO Graham Farrant attendance.  

Graham Farrant gave an update on the impact of COVID19 on the community, the economy and its resultant effect on BCP.  As we know the amalgamated Council was created 1st April 2019 and whilst it has been in place for just over a year in time,  they have still not completed a full year under ‘normal circumstance conditions’.  

With a budget of £283million/year made up of council tax, 50% business rates, and some grant money, the authority has seen a loss of £50-53 million. (Affected by big losses from car parking, trading and more money spent on moving patients out of hospitals and into care homes earlier than necessary.)  Graham highlighted that food distribution and shielding were left to Council and with children not attending school, many referrals and safety issues have arisen.  However, the Councils relationship with Police and Health have improved over the past few months which benefits the community. 

Graham went on to say that before he arrived in post, everything in the Council was paper based and that this has completely been reversed with everything ‘online’, significantly improving planning.   

Vikki Slade discussed the Community Response, Business Grants and new Discretionary Grants scheme.  The Council were able to very quickly pull together a community hub response called “Together We Can” with the intention that everyone who needed it, got support in terms of food, medicine, shelter etc. Council staff were redeployed to help with essential services and participated in creating a new environment together, as well as 2,000+ volunteers who were matched up with vulnerable people.   BCP is now a leading council in the way it has worked during COVID19 and found new ways of communicating with the public, including weekly ‘FaceBook lives’.   To date, 6000 businesses within BCP have received £75 million in grants. 

Graham and Vikki continue to lobby government to look to accommodate those businesses that aren’t covered by the grants. The Discretionary Grants Scheme has a small budget which will not go far, with the Council allocating £0.3million to business that didn’t meet criteria but were deemed important to the local economy e.g. hospitality & tourism, nurseries, finance, health & social care. Currently, the Fund has had 502 applications, with 650 businesses anticipated to apply. 

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Coronavirus: Saffery Partner Roger Wareham looks at five key issues for hospitality businesses

The UK economy has been met with the worst recession in history due to the outbreak of Coronavirus, with one of the hardest hit sectors being travel and hospitality. There has been a wealth of government resource which has had to be provided to businesses across the country, however none that are sector specific to date.    Government announcements have been issued at rapid rates and re-opening dates for the industry remain uncertain, making it difficult for businesses to plan and budget. 

Saffery Champness Partner Roger Wareham looks at five key issues that are particularly topical for the hospitality sector at present:


1. Social distancing – a new 1m rule?

The UK government has come under recent pressure from the hospitality sector to reduce the social distancing measures from two metres down to one. Whilst social distancing restrictions in any form negatively impact trade for most businesses within the sector, the reduction down to one metre could be the difference between around 75% of pubs and restaurants reopening and capacity increasing as much as 40%.

The official advice from the World Health Organisation is for people to stay at a minimum of one metre apart during the pandemic and this has seen countries such as France, China and Denmark implementing a one metre rule. 

More than half of the Conservative cabinet have shown support for the reduction in distancing measures including business secretary, Alok Sharma, who stated that more than 3.5 million jobs in the hospitality sector would be at risk if the UK didn’t have a “lucrative summer”, hence calls for a one-off autumn bank holiday.

Boris Johnson has stated that the measures are “constantly under review” and we expect to hear more by 4 July 2020 – the earliest date expected for the re-opening of the sector per government legislation at the time of writing.


2. The furlough scheme and the hospitality sector

Changes to the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) have been welcome news for the hospitality sector, which has been one of the hardest hit sectors during the Coronavirus pandemic. It is estimated that only 11% of the sector has been able to operate normally since the crisis began.Rishi Sunak announced on 12 May that the CJRS would be extended from 30 June to 31 October 2020, with employers being allowed to bring furloughed staff back for part-time work as of 1 July 2020.

The government will continue to pay the lower of 80% of the wage bill or a cap of £2,500 a month until the end of July, after which employers will be required to begin making staged contributions towards these wages until 31 October, at which point the scheme will end. 

Whilst this offers a short-term ease to cash flow for the country it is expected that, of the 8.4 million employees that have been furloughed since the start of the UK lockdown, one in three works in the hospitality sector. 

The sector is one of the last to be able to re-open and with the current social distancing measures in place, full capacity cannot be reached for the majority of businesses. Trade bodies have expressed their concerns in light of the staged cessation of the scheme and have called out for other sector specific support measures to be implemented.


3. Rent standstill

At the start of lockdown, many businesses faced possible eviction over a lack of funds to keep paying their rent bills. Though the government announced that commercial tenants would be protected from eviction for a three-month period, ending 23 June 2020, the rent still remains due, unless otherwise agreed with property landlords. Furthermore, with the June rent quarter approaching at the same time, this could come as a final blow for many. 

Trade body, UK Hospitality, has written to the Chancellor to warn that, unless financial support persists, then many businesses will face extinction, jobs will be lost and rent will not be paid. 

Proposed schemes so far have included the introduction of tax credits to incentivise rent waivers, property bounce back bonds to cover lost revenue and a furloughed space grant scheme (FSGS).

The proposed FSGS would result in the government making tapered fixed property payments depending on the level of trade that the business is able to undertake. This would require an audited 24-month cash flow to be provided. A similar scheme has been seen in practice in Denmark.

A scheme such as this would however qualify as State Aid under EU law and so must pass onerous tests to be enabled. In addition, the government appears to have avoided providing sector-specific support during the crisis so far, instead urging landlords to obtain loans under the Business Interruption Loan Scheme. As such, it may be that the FSGS is not being considered an option at this stage. 


4. Will the UK cut its VAT rates for the hospitality sector?

The UK is now one of the very few European countries not to have cut its VAT rates. Germany is due to reduce its VAT rate for the country as a whole (from 19% to 16% from 1 July to 31 December), and will also make reductions in its reduced rate, due to fall from 7% to 5%.

The UK has made similar changes in the past, notably during the 2008 recession, at which point it cut its standard VAT rate down from 17.5% to 15%. This was costly to the government and done in order to boost customer confidence. However, this reduction was not necessarily met with an overwhelming boost to the economy as hoped with many businesses struggling to pass the costs on to customers.

However, changes to VAT rates are quick and easy to administer and will provide an immediate ease to cash flow for the majority. It is a definite possibility that the government will cut the standard VAT rate to 15% (the lowest it can go while the UK is still governed by EU VAT law) in the near future. 


5. Hidden Coronavirus costs and cashflow forecasting

Re-opening hospitality businesses is costly in itself.  Not only will there be reduced capacity due to social distancing requirements, but there will also be financial investment required to make spaces safe for customers and staff (“social distancing ready”). These might include the cost of installing protective screens, providing additional staff, staff training and PPE, and sanitiser stations among many other potential costs. Footwear retailer, Kurt Geiger, has suggested that such measures could add an additional £75,000 per store to its costs for the year.

Whatever the level of preparation required, businesses will need to ensure their forecasts include any additional costs expected, as well as reductions to the furlough support scheme and the reintroduction of rent payments. Whilst there may be future hospitality-specific support measures introduced, we strongly recommend businesses forecast as prudently as possible to ensure that they are braced for recommencing trade

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Neuromarketing user- testing suite, hardware remote monitoring, corrugated cardboard and marine systems in bid to grab Dorset Business Angels attention

The 2nd Dorset Business Angels Virtual pitch event takings place on 6th July.  The event takes place on the heels of the successful inaugural virtual pitch event in April 2020 which attracted investor interest and immediate investment to businesses pitching.

The 6th July event includes 5 businesses pitching but is boosted by a pitch from a Bournemouth based business that will be pitching their innovative Neuromarketing user-testing suite that maps facial expressions and monitors the emotional responses of a typical viewer to a particular advertising stimulus.  The results are compared to a database of responses in order to determine how successful the ‘creative’ is likely to be.

Other pitches include:

  • A business in Marine Systems/equipment. The Company’s products are designed to give boat owners real-time load data that will allow them to sail their boats faster. Their system provides wireless load-sensing technology for rigging and soft line/ropes.  The rig loading on the vessel has a strong influence on the shape of the sails and hence the speed of the boat. This type of information capture lags behind other technologies in the sailing market and this platform is designed to fill a significant gap that currently exists. 
  • A Corrugated cardboard manufacture which aims to disrupt the corrugated cardboard market that has seen little innovation over the past 50 years or so. Current manufacturing methods use large scale ‘corrugators’ that are expensive to purchase and run, and require large amounts of gas, electricity and water to operate.  The business has developed a ‘steam-free’ corrugator that requires no process water, uses 78% less energy than the traditional manufacturing process and occupies 88% less space than current equipment of a similar capacity. This will allow individual packaging companies to increase their margins by bringing board manufacture in-house, thus allowing them to produce just enough product to meet their short-term requirements.
  • A spin-out company from Cambridge University has developed a successful ’fit and forget’ solution for the ever-increasing need for the ‘remote condition monitoring’ of hardware devices. The befits include early warning of equipment failure, increased operational efficiency, energy reduction and regulatory compliance.
  • A business in the home cooking space started selling a range of Indian and Italian dishes in late 2019 and had included Japanese and Spanish menus by the start of this year. They now offer a total of 77 recipes across 30 menus to UK customers, with more recipes in the pipeline. 

Dorset Business Angels Chairman, Don McQueen advised, “We encourage would-be investors to get in touch with us and would urge them to get involved. There is no obligation to invest in any of the pitches.  Why not register and come along to see how our pitch events run.”

DBA was formed in 2013 with the aim to bring investors and entrepreneurs together to accelerate the growth of early stage businesses. DBA provides quality, private equity investment opportunities to local high net worth (HNW) and sophisticated investors (SI). 

Four times a year companies are invited to attend an event at which they pitch their business to the savvy Angels in a Dragon’s Den type scenario. Angel investment might come from a single investor or it could be 2 or 3 Angels pooling funds together to support a company. Any investments are in the form of an equity investment and not a debtor’s loan. Investments are made across all sectors. 

DBA is sponsored by Saffery Champness Accountants, Ellis Jones Solicitors and Investec Wealth and Investment. To find out more about Dorset Business Angels or to book on to the pitch event visit www.dorsetbusinessangels.co.uk 

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UK Government supports the wages of 123,300 jobs across Dorset. www.gov.uk.

Since the launch of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS), the UK Government has supported the wages of 123,300 jobs in Dorset.The CJRS and SEISS were announced by the Chancellor, and are run by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), as part of a package of support measures for businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak. 

Businesses have furloughed 93,100 jobs in Dorset, up to 31 May 2020, since the CJRS was launched on 20 April 2020. This isto help UK employers who have been severely affected by coronavirus to retain their employees and protect the UK economy. An announcement was made on 12 May 2020 that the scheme will run until the end of October to continue the support for jobs and businesses as people return to work.

The SEISS was rolled out ahead of schedule in May and has financially supported 30,200 self-employed individuals in Dorset who have been adversely affected by the coronavirus outbreak and paid grants worth a total of £90,500,000 (£90 million) up to 31 May 2020. On 29 May 2020, the Chancellor announced an extension to this scheme. Those eligible to claim the SEISS grant will be able to claim a second and final grant in August of up to £6,750.

Rishi Sunak, Chancellor of the Exchequer, said:“The UK Government is doing everything we can to protect jobs and businesses in Dorset and across the UK during the crisis.  Our unprecedented job retention and self-employment support schemes have supported the livelihoods of millions and will help ensure our recovery is as swift as possible.”  

  1. A breakdown* of claims is below and here’s a link to the statistics on GOV.UK  https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/hmrc-coronavirus-covid-19-statistics

Click here to see Reports by South West – Claims by Local Authority area

Note:

 *For the CJRS, regional data is only available for the number of employments furloughed. This is because UK PAYE data is based on the location of the employers’ PAYE scheme address, usually their payroll department or headquarters, which may not be in the same region as the furloughed employee lives. For the CJRS the number of employers furloughing staff and the amount claimed is based upon the employers’ PAYE scheme address, so it would be misleading to publish this information regionally.    

The number of jobs furloughed under the CJRS is calculated as the sum of the maximum number of employees furloughed by any PAYE scheme across all claims by that scheme.

The number of employers who have furloughed staff is calculated by the number of CJRS claims received for PAYE schemes registered with HMRC (with an employer reference).

More information about the CJRS can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wages-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

More information about the SEISS can be found at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus/business-support

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Get Ready for Re-Opening! A message from BCP Council for businesses

At BCP Council we are working hard to ensure our high streets are ready and welcoming for customers to return safely and securely as shops re-open from 15th June and hospitality businesses from 4th July.  Whilst we have been out visiting our town and district centres we can see that many of you are taking this opportunity to refresh and refurbish your shop fronts and interiors.  Thank you.  

We want to work alongside you to reassure visitors that our high streets are more safe, attractive and welcoming than ever. 

We are rolling out social distancing signage across our centres and in some areas traffic management measures have already been put in place where pavement space proves difficult to maintain social distancing.  We will continue to monitor and respond to social distancing issues as lockdown lifts and businesses reopen. We have been in regular communication with businesses and listed below is a reminder of some of the key messages to help ensure a safe and successful re-opening. By working together we can deliver a positive message to visitors to our high streets and ensure that they feel comfortable and safe to return. 

  1. KEEP LEFT!  You will see that our key message for using all of our public spaces, pavements and high streets safely is to ‘Keep Safe, Keep Left’.
  1. SPEAK TO YOUR NEIGHBOURS!  Please ensure that you are talking to your next door businesses where external queues may clash and overhang their frontages.  Coordinating your queuing space and marking it clearly will reassure your customers and ensure there are not issues with social distancing.  We appreciate that it may take some time before all businesses are open and able to have these conversations, but a co-operative and understanding mindset will really help to iron out potential issues.
  1. LIMIT YOUR QUEUES!  Having a clearly marked ‘End of Queue’ floor marking will highlight the need to customers to come back later if the queue is too long.  Signage templates for downloading along with all of our business support and guidance can be found on our website https://www.bcpcouncil.gov.uk/News/News-Features/COVID19/Employers-Employees-and-Businesses/Reopening-businesses-support-and-guidance.aspx
  1. SIGNPOST!  Ensure your customers feel secure and well informed about your social distancing and hygiene and sanitation measures.  Businesses should display a downloadable notice to inform customers and staff they have followed COVID secure guidance: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/5eb959f5e90e0708370f97f9/staying-covid-19-secure-accessible.pdf
  1. UNDERSTAND YOUR LIMITS!  Help to avoid potential issues by being aware of government guidance and legislation.  Please note: the provision of seating, including external, for customers to consume food and drink on is NOT currently permitted: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/further-businesses-and-premises-to-close/further-businesses-and-premises-to-close-guidance
  1. HOTSPOTS!  We understand that some social distancing issues are out of your control.  BCP Council has set up an email for reporting incidents of areas where public health is at risk due to lack of good social distancing practice.  Please use hotspot@bcpcouncil.gov.uk to report your concerns.  We will be monitoring this 7 days a week, triaging to prioritise and responding accordingly to address these issues on the ground.  Please note that our resources are stretched – cooperation within and between businesses to follow these key messages may prevent unnecessary interventions.

Please follow the links below for more information on topics that may be of interest to you and your business: 

COVID-19 Safe guidance for businesses: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19

HSE COVID-19 Guidance and Advice: HSE has posted advice and is also offering an enquiry service for businesses via an on-line form or phone.  Details here: https://www.hse.gov.uk/contact/index.htm?utm_source=hse.gov.uk&utm_medium=refferal&utm_campaign=contact&utm_content=home-page-info

ASB & Street begging: Please see the attached flyer for information. 

Legionella Legionella advice is posted on the COVID pages of our website https://www.bcpcouncil.gov.uk/News/News-Features/COVID19/Employers-Employees-and-Businesses/Reopening-businesses-support-and-guidance.aspx

Food Business Re-opening Checklist (Food Standards Agency) https://www.bcpcouncil.gov.uk/News/News-Features/COVID19/Employers-Employees-and-Businesses/Food-Delivery-And-Takeaway-Guidance.aspx

Checklist https://www.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/media/document/reopening-checklist-for-food-businesses-during-covid-19-form.pdf

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