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This is not advice. Items herein are general comments only and do not constitute or convey advice per se. The information contained in these articles is for guidance only and should not be relied upon without obtaining professional advice having regard to your direct circumstances.


Business Planning

A business plan is an essential tool in starting up your business. It allows you to set a clear direction for your business, to communicate planning objectives and strategies to partners, employees, bankers and other financial backers and forces realistic consideration of your goals and policies. Some of the benefits of a business plan are:
  • It requires you to conduct research and test your ideas on paper to see if your business could be profitable or not
  • Forces you to think more realistically, objectively and less emotionally about your ideas
  • Helps you to anticipate problems that are likely to occur and decide how they should be managed
  • Forces you to justify or prove the validity of your strategies
  • Helps you to recognise the nature of changing markets
  • It offers a framework for analysis and review in the future
Small business studies show that owners who make clear business plans are much more likely to survive and prosper. For a business plan to be effective it needs to be specific, intelligible, measurable, realistic and flexible. A business plan should contain:
  • Name and address of the proposed business
  • A description of the product or service
  • A description of your relevant industry and views on competitors
  • What the business intends to achieve, including long term goals
  • Details of the business owners or partners, such as skills, roles and responsibilities in the new business and proposed ownership structure
  • Funding or financial information, such as the starting and working capital needed, how you plan on repaying loans, estimated budgets and projected profit and loss accounts
  • A marketing plan that addresses your proposed image, potential target market and how you plan on advertising and promoting your product or service to meet your competitors
  • Organisational details, for example staffing needs
  • Legal considerations, for instance any relevant licences, taxes and insurance
It is important to attach documentation to your plan that supports you business idea, such as brochures, designs, market research figures, resumes or biographies of owners or partners.Business planning is an ongoing business activity and you should use your business plan in the future to assess your business’ performance and review and update your business objectives.

Business Plan Template
Business Plan Guide

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