Business News – Information to help your business | Issue #23 June 2017

Reproduced from email delivered by Wiltshire Council and Enterprise Wiltshire

Welcome to the latest edition of Wiltshire Council’s Business News, bringing you up to date information to help your business with economic, employment, development and green initiatives, as well as providing details of business news and forthcoming events

News for Business

The Swindon & Wiltshire Enterprise Adviser Network is continuing to increase business engagement in education, and support young people in our local communities – read about a fantastic example from South Wilts Grammar School. To find out more about joining the network

Gain a competitive business edge with the Building Bridges programme for employers:
– Is your workplace finding it hard to recruit and retain staff?
– As an employer, are you interested in Corporate Social Responsibility?
– Would you like to offer potentially life changing opportunities to willing individuals we are helping to overcome challenges and barriers to work?
– Our dedicated Employer Engagement and In-Work Support team are here to support you

The Building Bridges programme is here to support you:
The Building Bridges programme is jointly funded by the Big Lottery Fund and the European Social Fund. The programme aims to help people facing challenges and barriers to move into work by injecting £3.9m into supporting individuals in Swindon and Wiltshire. As part of this we are seeking to support employers in Swindon and Wiltshire by matching them with individuals who can add value to their workforce and providing support to both the employer and employee. Learn more

The Swindon and Wiltshire SME Growth Programme is a new project linking small and start-up businesses with Business Growth Advisors who work with you providing bespoke training, mentoring and support to help your business grow. See more information about the “free” impartial business support and advice available, and the associated grant programme

The General Data Protection Regulation will come into force in 2018, replacing the existing Data Protection Act – find out what it means for your business and how you should prepare for this change

The Swindon and Wiltshire Growth Hub, a business support service funded by the Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership (SWLEP), is giving local businesses an opportunity to enhance the Growth Hub service by providing their views. The survey takes approximately 3 minutes to complete. Find out more

Driving productivity: Productivity has been described as one of the most significant challenges of our time. Why are UK businesses trailing behind their counterparts in Europe and the US? And what are firms in the South West doing to improve? Read more

Is your business eligible for free business support? The Swindon and Wiltshire SME Growth Programme links small and start-up businesses with Business Growth Advisors providing bespoke training, mentoring and support to help businesses grow. To see more information about this free impartial business support and advice, and the associated grant programme

Understanding the Great Repeal Bill: The Great Repeal Bill White Paper sets out the government’s proposals for ensuring a functioning statute book once the UK has left the European Union. Read the guidance for businesses to help you prepare for the UK’s exit from the EU. As the UK leaves the European Union, find out about the government’s Plan for Britain. The Department for Exiting the European Union (DExEU) welcomes your comments and contributions in order to better prepare the ground for the UK’s exit from the European Union. Have your say by emailing the team at: [email protected] or to subscribe to the DExEU Business Bulletin to receive updates as the UK prepares to leave the EU


Rural Businesses grants:
– SWLEP’s Rural Growth Programme offers grants from £35-200k to smaller rural businesses for tourism accommodation and infrastructure, and business innovation. Food and drink processing grants up to £250k are available in urban and Rural areas. For full details
– LEADER Programme rural business grants from £5 to 100k are available to support a micro or small enterprise, increase farming or forestry productivity, help with farm diversification, rural tourism, rural service provision, and culture and heritage activities – for details of LEADER and other business support

For the latest news about future and current funding opportunities from Innovate UK, visit their website

Learning and Development

Developing workforce opportunities on our doorstep: With the current geo-political uncertainty in the world, the number of EU citizens working in the UK saw its largest drop in 5 years by 50,000 in the last quarter of 2016 (source ONS). Therefore, now more than ever, we need to build even more robust local talent pipelines and develop employees within the workplace to a higher level in a bid to fill skill gaps. The benefits of this type of up-skilling, particularly in the workplace, are many, including cost savings and increased productivity. Contact Higher Futures to find out how

Support for Wiltshire’s SMEs continues into 2017 with access to free training for business owners and their staff to directly assist scaling up for growth, including leadership development supporting businesses in getting to the next level. To find out how to access these and many other business benefits please contact: [email protected] and 01225 355553.  For details on Elevate and Elite Peer to Peer Growth networks


South West 42 under 42 Business Awards 2017 will take place on Thursday 6 July 2017 at The Bristol Hotel. For further information

Advanced Engineering UK – The UK’s largest annual advanced engineering trade show and conference takes place at Birmingham’s National on the 01/02 November 2017

The Enterprise Network’s Enterprise Centres in Salisbury, Ludgershall, Royal Wootton Bassett and Trowbridge will host a series of business knowledge events in the coming months including Starting a Business, Marketing Made Easy and Advanced Business Strategy workshops. Visit the website to see the full calendar and book

Innovate UK supports events that bring together innovators, successful entrepreneurs and investors, offering advice and highlighting the type of support and funding currently available. Find out more and register for upcoming events

The Digital, Innovation and Technology Conference on 20 September 2017 will focus on the transformational impact that digital, innovation and technology is having on the consumer, on businesses, on high streets, towns and city centres. To register for this event or go to the website

Inspire Events – Join us for our popular Breakfasts, Drop-Ins, Lunches and Seminars – Networking and bringing businesses together. Sound good? Visit the website to see all events

SWLEP organised its first Growth Hub event of the year in March 2017 which was well attended by close to 100 delegates from Swindon and Wiltshire’s micro, small and medium businesses. Read More


If your registered business address is also your home address you might like to consider taking a Virtual Office post box at one of five Enterprise Centres located in Salisbury, Trowbridge, Tisbury, Royal Wootton Bassett or Ludgershall. Secure a more business-like address (and use our facilities for client meetings and ad hoc working too if you like)

Are you looking for flexible, affordable work or meeting space in Wiltshire? The Enterprise Network (TEN) offers a range of ad hoc working and meeting space in Enterprise Centres across the county. If you need a hot desk, a post box address, an affordable office (desks from £50 p/w) or a location for your team meeting, training programme or workshop – TEN can help

Tisbury’s new Nadder Centre: Comprising start-up work space at the in-house Enterprise Centre the centre offers flexible office and meeting space with the added benefit of fantastic facilities including a gym and childcare all on one site. For information contact: Rachel Finlay 01722 567345 or email r[email protected]

Other Business News

Rural firms urged to get their entries in for this year’s Rural Business Awards by the deadline of 30 June 2017
GripIt founder reveals exciting plans as company continues to grow rapidly
Good Energy to raise £10m with second bond
Businesses open up in Trowbridge’s new Cradle Bridge development
Rubber specialists are bouncing after significant profit growth

The Enterprise Wiltshire website hosts other news stories

Items You May Have Missed In Previous Issues

Primary Authority consultation to help all UK businesses grow – From 1 October 2017 all UK businesses, pre start-ups included, will have access to assured regulatory advice through Primary Authority

Employment hits highest rate of 74.6% since records began – Official figures released by the Office for National Statistics show that there are over 300,000 more people in work compared to the same time last year, and the number of women in work has risen to a record rate of 70.0%

There have been significant changes to Universal Credit, which brings together a range of current benefits and tax credits, to increase the financial benefits of work and provide businesses with a more flexible workforce, in particular ending the 16 hours per week rule. A range of detailed guides are available that explain how Universal Credit now works for employers, including:
– a graphic summary of How Universal Credit can help your business
Universal Credit: how it helps your employees and workers – this information can help you answer any questions your employees and workers may have about Universal Credit
– A guide to Universal Credit for HR and payroll staff – explains the changes and benefits Universal Credit brings for recruiters, HR managers and payroll staff
Frequently asked questions from employers – compiled from questions asked by national employers and SMEs

The Enterprise Network (TEN) range of events, seminars, workshops and master classes on all aspects of starting, growing and developing your business, has never been greater – and the good news is that many of these events are subsidised or free to attend. Invest some time working ‘on’ your business for a few hours rather than ‘in’ your business. Discover more about what’s available in the TEN event calendar and on the Swindon & Wiltshire Growth Hub website

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