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  • Blog Post: Manufacturing & production moving back to UK?

    I caught an interesting item on BBC breakfast news this morning, on a Nottinghamshire-based manufacturer of children’s safety harnesses which has moved production back to the UK from China. With inflation and labour costs increasing – and forecast to rise significantly over the coming year – production...
  • Blog Post: Can avatars substitute for colleagues in video-conferencing?

    'Location liberation' Not Microsoft-speak but all part of the video-conferencing, telepresence, webinar technological revolution. The latest development - out of Japan - is a somewhat creepy tele-operated android, which apparently helps you to actually 'feel' the presence of another person. This must...
  • Blog Post: Reminder! Tax Return online deadline Sunday 31 January

    If you haven’t sent your Tax Return to HM Revenue & Customs yet (editor's note: yes, that includes me!), you’ll need to be quick, or you may get a £100 penalty. Make sure you visit www.hmrc.gov.uk/sa and file your 2008/09 Self Assessment Tax Return online by 31 January. Why not do it today...
  • Blog Post: FSB Annual Conference online resources

    If you missed the FSB’s annual conference you might want to browse the website for news and resources stemming from the two-day event last week. You’ll find videos of keynote speakers’ speeches, including Lord Mandelson, Rt Hon Alex Salmond and George Osbourne. Plus policy issues, publications and the...
  • Blog Post: Free financial advice for small businesses

    A useful survival tip for 2009 is to take advantage of any free resources offered to small businesses. One of these is the news feed on the Small Business Centre homepage, which is updated daily and has topical, relevant news that can help your business. If you take a look at the right-hand column...
  • Blog Post: Quick ‘Fix it'

    I'm trying to get in a joke here about Jim'll Fix It but struggling, so I've given up and will play this one straight. To help Windows and PC users, Microsoft is trying out the idea of a ‘ Fix it ' button on web-based support pages, detailing the most common problems and steps needed to fix the problem...
  • Blog Post: SMEs and the General Election

    Microsoft hosted the latest quarterly SME (small and medium-sized enterprises) Advisory Panel a couple of weeks ago, and the topic was – not unnaturally – the possible implications of the election on small businesses. Panellists included: Robert Epstein, Head of Small Business, Microsoft SMB...
  • Blog Post: Women in science and technology

    It's no secret that there is a shortage of female employees in the fields of science, maths and engineering - despite the fact that apparently more girls than boys achieve the top grades in subjects in school. Last year five times more men than women achieveved a degree in engineering and women make...
  • Blog Post: SME News Feed

    We've had a daily news feed on the Small Business website for a while now, and it's proving a quick and easy way of keeping up-to-date with SME news. We've developed this resource so you can now view the whole news archive , not just the previous few days, and find those articles you read last week....
  • Blog Post: Jump out of the recession and into a franchise

    The Small Business Centre news feed picked up a story on franchising last week - ‘ Franchising can help grow a business '. Writing for Business Week, contributing editor Sarah Max suggested that franchising can be good way to expand because other entrepreneurs finance the majority of the costs. Franchisees...