Starting a new business can be a nerve-wracking experience. But with careful planning, a well-thought-out business plan, and the correct business forms, the transition from student to self-employed can be a simple process.
Business forms may be the last thing on your agenda. Especially if you need to find premises, apply for licenses, and build websites to get your new venture off the ground. But without them, you could find yourself at a loss when dealing with clients and tax authorities later down the line. Worse still, you may end up on the wrong side of the law if you do not meet your legal paperwork obligations.
Here, we’ll look at the Top 4 Business Forms you need to start a new business in the UK. Furthermore explaining what they are for, why you need them, and how to stay on top of your documentation when your business grows.
1. Terms & Conditions Business Forms
After registering your new business with the HMRC or Companies House then your Terms & Conditions Form should be next on your list of priorities. Your business T&Cs are so much more than small print. They establish the contractual framework between you and your customers. They protect your intellectual property rights, outline the responsibilities of both parties. And perhaps most importantly of all, they can limit your liability if something goes wrong.
Using a Terms & Conditions template is considerably cheaper than having your T&Cs drafted by a solicitor. However, you need to edit it to make it relevant to your business niche. Remember, Terms & Conditions must be fair to both parties. So try to put yourself in your customers shoes when preparing them. Be objective, and if in doubt, seek legal advice.
2. Income & Expenditure Business Forms
Staying on top of your finances is essential when starting a new business. The easiest way to do so is with an Income & Expenditure Form. Also, commonly referred to as a budget planner or financial statement. This form details how much money you have coming in, how much is going out, and what you have left over at the end of each month.
Your Income and Expenditure Form will give you a clear overview of your earnings, spending, and living costs. Thus help you prioritise your bills so that you never fall into arrears. In short, it puts you in charge of your financial situation. So you can see what cash you have available, what you need to save. In addition, where, if necessary, you need to cut your spending to make your new business thrive.
3. Registration Business Forms
Whether you’re offering a personal service, dog walking services, virtual assistant services then one of the easiest ways to find out what you need to know about your customers is with a Registration Form.
You can customise your Registration Form Templates with questions relevant to your business. Next issue them to potential customers as PDF or digital documents. They are a quick and efficient way to collect, store essential information and facilitate your onboarding process. Like all business form templates, registration forms should be personalised to your services or products. The idea is to gather as much information as possible in as few questions as needed.
4. Invoice Form
Another essential business form you need to launch your new business is an Invoice Template. It’s all about earning money, after all. If you are VAT registered, you’ll need a VAT Invoice Template. If not, you can use a non-VAT Invoice Form to collect payment from your customers.
When customising an invoice template for your new business, remember to include essential information such as your company name, address, and contact number. Plus, you will need the name and address of your customer, a clear description of the goods or services supplied, the VAT amount, if applicable, and the total amount due. All invoices must have an invoice date and unique identification number. And of course, they should include payment details such as your business bank account or a credit card link.
And As Your Business Grows…
As your business grows, additional small business forms may be necessary to manage your day-to-day processes. These could include minute listings and agendas for your team, investor and new partner meetings, incident reports to help you comply with Health & Safety Regulations. Plus leave request forms to manage staff holidays.
If your accountant doesn’t provide you with software, you may need to keep accounting forms to help with your end-of-year submissions. And if you deal with outside suppliers, you must issue service provider agreements to outline the obligations of both parties.
Many new business owners consider it good practice to issue customer feedback forms or client satisfaction surveys. They are a great way to discover what people genuinely think of your products and services. And if you intend to grow your team, job application form templates will make an invaluable addition to your paperwork portfolio.
The Benefits of Using Business Forms
The benefits of using business forms to grow a new company are well-documented. But they are often overlooked by online business owners who want to move away from paper-based systems. However, modern business form templates are available for on or offline use, and the pros of using them far outweigh any cons.
Organisation is key to the success of any business. By documenting your daily processes, you can stay on top of your finances, avoid costly mistakes, and prove to the authorities that your business is compliant with the latest rules and regulations. But that’s not all.
Quality business form templates branded with company logos exude professionalism, and they are a great way to get your business noticed in a crowded marketplace. Branded business forms can attract new customers, encourage existing clients to return for additional services, and help you build a better business by showing your clientele that you mean business from the start.