We appreciate this is a very worrying time for entrepreneurs and small business owners and want to continue supporting you in any way we can.
- Our Business and IP enquiry service can still be contacted via Business@glasgowlife.org.uk
- Our specialist business information resources can still be accessed from home
- Further information about our offer can be found at our Business & IP Centre Glasgow homepage
In addition, we have gathered some information here that we think you will find useful.
You will find the latest information on Scottish business support for Coronavirus on the Find Business Support website or by calling the helpline: 0300 303 0660. It is open Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5.30pm. Select option 1 to speak to the COVID-19 team.
Key sites for Covid-19 Business Support:
- UK Government
- Scottish Government
- Business Gateway (National)
- Business Gateway (Local Offices)
- Creative Entrepreneurs’ Club
- Federation of Small Businesses
- BIPC (National)
- Social Enterprise UK
- Scottish Business Resilience Centre
- Scottish Chambers of Commerce
- ACAS - The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan
If your business needs short term cash flow support, you may be eligible for a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan (CBILS). CBILS provides financial support to smaller businesses (SMEs) across the UK that are losing revenue, and seeing their cash flow disrupted, as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. For further information see British Business Bank.
See also the COBRA factsheet 'Applying for a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan' as well as the factsheet on Business Rates Relief Schemes in Scotland. COBRA is available from home using your Glasgow Library card.
Call 0800 015 9559 if you are concerned about being able to pay your tax due to COVID-19. This HMRC helpline is open from Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm and on Saturday, 8am to 4pm
Third Sector Resilience Fund
This Fund will support organisations across the third sector that are at risk of closure due to disruption caused by COVID-19. For more information see the SCVO site
Working from Home
This has been a difficult time for both businesses and employees. The advice is constantly changing and dealing with it can be difficult. One thing the government has advised that is that employees work from home where possible but what does this mean for you and your business and what advice is available online to help you with it?
- A Guardian guide for those who are new to working from home including guides on software and hardware
- The BBC’s five top tips for home working including advice on setting boundaries between home and work
- Business Gateway are providing virtual support in the form of helpful articles written by industry experts such as Working from home – Tips to help you settle in and Managing a Team Remotely
- The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants has an excellent article which can be applied to anyone suddenly working from home, no matter what their profession.
Video Conferencing Software
Zoom is software specifically for work meetings. It has a premium version but the free version still allows you to have multiple-way meetings with your team for up to 40 minutes. Alternatives include Google Chat, Microsoft Teams and Skype for one-to-one calls. Mobile apps such as WhatsApp can also be used for group chats or one-to-one videos calls.
Document Creation Software
While your work computer may have full access to Microsoft Office or other premium software, this might not be the case when you are working from home. Luckily there are several alternative options available. LibreOffice is free and fully compatible with Microsoft Office software created by a non-profit company and available for download. It includes spreadsheets, word documents, power-points and more. Microsoft also offers a free version of office online, as do Google although these can only be accessed in browser.
See also our Workshops & Events page for weekly highlights
If you are looking for training opportunities for you and your staff, look no further than the British Library BIPC Webinars. These hour long sessions can be viewed from the comfort of your own home and are delivered by the business experts from the BIPC in London.
Business Gateway have moved much of their offer online to help businesses through COVID-19. Most of the upcoming topics are directly relevant to the new challenges businesses are facing.
Google Digital Garage
Google Digital Garage To support small business owners and people working remotely, Google Digital Garage has launched as a webinar series. The training is free for everyone to attend and delivered by expert trainers to help and support learning from home, whatever the goal.
Scottish Enterprise host expert-delivered webinars all year round and will be hosting more during the COVID-19 period. All free.
Glasgow Chamber of Commerce
Webinars delivered by the GCC are generally for members only but, in light of the current situation, they are offering many of them free even to non-members. Topics include coronavirus business discussions and chats about working from home.
Entrepreneurial Scotland Momentum
A series of round-tables and panel events which are now entirely online to help you run your business in these challenging times.
Intellectual Property (IP) Support & Online Training Tools
The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) have issued advice to maintain services for customers applying for intellectual property (IP) rights during the Coronavirus outbreak. They also have a range of free online support tools you can access from home. These have been designed to help you:
- Understand how IP works and what can be protected using patents, copyright, trade marks and designs.
- Understand how to manage and use IP
- Consider IP within business planning
- Best leverage IP to protect investments and products.
IP Made Easy
A series of 12 short IP based animations. They break IP down into ‘bite-sized’ chunks that explain the different rights and how they can benefit business.
Good for: those new to IP, those wanting to brush up on existing skills, and give you ideas on how to distinguish your trade marks from copyright.
- IP Equip
Following on from ‘IP Made Easy’, these 4 modules help develop a greater understanding of the four most commonly discussed areas of IP –Copyright, Trademarks, Patents and Design. Registration is required, but free. Progress is saved so you don’t have to complete all the modules in one go.
Good for: Those wanting to develop their understanding of intellectual property.
- IP Healthcheck
Every business will own some form of intellectual property, but do you know how to protect these assets? The IP Health Check online tool is free to use and will help you answer those questions. By answering a series of simple questions a tailored confidential report is created for you.
Good for: Identifying potentially valuable IP assets and making sure you have them properly protected.
- IP Basics
A simple, straightforward guide that explains: the different types of IP where they fit in your business how to protect them the ways you can use IP through licensing and franchising
Good for: Keeping as a reference guide to dip in and out of for information on IP