Free Southern Entrepreneurs Event – Regulation for Small Business

06 Dec 2016 10:00 – 13:00

Enterprise Centre – PORTSMOUTH

This workshop will give an awareness of the areas of regulation that may apply to a business and how to go about developing compliance controls as a response to the ever increasing number of regulations and need for operational transparency.

Read more and book your place on the Southern Entrepreneurs website…

Tackling the Growing Loneliness Crisis: A Free Symposium for Southampton Businesses

4pm to 6pm Tuesday, 4th October 2016, Hawthorn Suite, Solent Conference Suite, The Spark, East Park Terrace, Southampton, SO14 0YN (Solent University)

Southampton City Council has organised this workshop to discuss with local business leaders, how they can benefit from getting involved in tackling loneliness in the City.

Loneliness is not just a problem for older people, 50% of calls to Childline nationally are made by young people saying they feel socially isolated. Southampton City Council believe there are opportunities for businesses in getting involved.

They would like to invite anyone who might be interested to the event and have asked us to share this invitation, please register your interest in attending by emailing Andrew Gittins


Can I apply a CE mark to toys that I am selling?

All new toys that are supplied in the course of a business must be marked with a CE mark (other details also need to be given).

The CE marking on a product is a declaration by the manufacturer of conformity with the law (i.e. amongst other things the CE mark declares that the toy is safe.)

If you are manufacturing the toys and selling them, then you must apply a CE mark. Clearly you must make sure that the product complies with the legal requirements that apply and be able to demonstrate this compliance.

If you are buying toys from a supplier within the EU then you should make sure that they are already CE marked.

If your supplier is outside the EU then you will need to ensure that they comply with the law and then apply the CE mark and your contact details as the importer (into the EU).


We are employing someone for the first time what do we need to do?

There are 7 things you need to do when employing staff for the first time.

  1. Decide how much to pay someone – you must pay your employee at least the National Minimum Wage.
  2. Check if someone has the legal right to work in the UK. You may have to do other employment checks as well.
  3. Check if you need to apply for a DBS check (formerly known as a CRB check) if you work in a field that requires one, eg with vulnerable people or security.
  4. Get employment insurance – you need employers’ liability insurance as soon as you become an employer.
  5. Send details of the job (including terms and conditions) in writing to your employee. You need to give your employee a written statement of employment if you’re employing someone for more than 1 month.
  6. Tell HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) by registering as an employer – you can do this up to 4 weeks before you pay your new staff.
  7. Check if you need to automatically enrol your staff into a workplace pension scheme.

(July 2016 Question 1)

Snipping Red Tape With Crimson Crab

Many thanks to Reputation Advocate, Lorna Jackson from Advance and Get Noticed for organising this feature in etc magazine.

We thoroughly enjoyed our morning discussing business issues with Laura Cartledge and you can read the whole February edition here.


What can we do to make sure that our affiliates, subcontractors, etc operate in a way that maintains and enhances our brand reputation?

It is crucial to carry out appropriate due diligence. Ask questions that will uncover things that may pose a risk to your reputation. For example, how do they handle client complaints?

You could oblige them to comply with a code of conduct. In this way you can ensure that your standards are upheld and you could include a clause on dispute resolution.

You could include specific clauses in a set of terms and conditions. However you must beware of ‘liquidated damages provisions’, where a penalty is payable for example for late completion. These should only be used as a genuine pre-estimate of losses which will be suffered by a breach of the contract and not used as a penalty clause, otherwise the provisions may be held to be unenforceable.

I supply services to other businesses and I have not been paid for the work I have done, what can I do?

This is very likely to be a breach of the law. The Data Protection Act relates to the handling (including the security) of personal data, which is essentially anything which can identify an individual. So it is very likely that an email address is personal data. It does not matter that the information is publicly available. All data controllers have a responsibility to ensure appropriate and proportionate security of the personal data they hold.

A breach of the Data Protection Act can result in enforcement action including a maximum ‘fine’ of £500,000. The Information Commissioner can also name and shame which may result in significant damage to reputation and brand.

In addition an individual has a right to claim compensation from an organisation if they have suffered damage because they have breached part of the Act.

Do I have to report a breach of the Data Protection Act?

Although there is no legal obligation on data controllers to report breaches of security which result in loss, release or corruption of personal data, the Information Commissioner believes serious breaches should be brought to the attention of his Office. Serious breaches are not defined, but the potential detriment to individuals, the volume of data affected and its sensitivity all need to be considered.