At this year’s Online Growth Summit hosted by Blooming Founders, Inga Driksne, operations advisor to early-stage founders, with a wealth of experience in supporting founders during the hiring process, shared her thoughts on recruitment best practice for startups and small businesses who are looking to embark on their first hires. Startups Magazine reports.
Apple announced big updates for iCloud and iOS 15 at the company’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference this June, with a particular focus on privacy and data tracking. Newly unveiled features from the tech giant include the ability for users to load remote content privately without disclosing their IP, as well as using 'burner' email accounts to sign up for email offers.
The billions promised by the government for catch-up tuition sounds like a lot of money, but when you work it out on an individual basis it’s barely enough to cover a few hours of one-to-one tuition per student. I believe that edtech rather than tuition provides the answer to meet the catch-up challenge, and his micro-tuition experiment proves that this approach can work.
Since the 1990s media artist Chris Hales has taken a solo DIY approach to create interactive film installations and performances that have been shown worldwide. His current interest is in customised film, in which user data (a video grab, a voice recording, selfie photo, or text responses) is incorporated into a short film in humorous ways, giving a personal experience for each user.
2021 has seen more new businesses being registered by women than ever before. I believe that when you truly set your intention to build your own business, and when you determine that nothing is going to stand in your way, you are already one solid step on the road to success. However, for women hoping to become mothers, or who already have families, the challenge of running your own business and bringing up a family at the same time is a complex one. Unless you have a stay-at-home and supportive partner, there will always be additional challenges.
The education sector is often called out due to its difficulty to implement change - whether that is because institutions have legacy systems in place, do not have the time it takes to adopt new technologies, or the affordability aspect. To understand how the education industry as a whole can take the necessary steps forward and achieve its long-anticipated digital transformation, we must first look at the key barriers holding it back.
You might have, in fact you most likely have, been hearing a lot of stuff about Clubhouse over the last few months. Although this audio-first social media platform actually came into existence well over a year ago, it has featured in the marketing and branding world’s Zeitgeist most heavily since the beginning of 2021.
Are you sitting on an idea for a brilliant new app or digital product? Perhaps you have already started the process into making that idea a reality but it is taking too long or just not coming out exactly as you had imagined? At Intrface, we specialise in helping start-ups develop and realise their vision with methods such as Rapid Validation and something we like to call: The Design Sprint 2.0.
Sanofi’s acquisition of Cambridge UK-based, Kymab in early 2021, in a deal worth up to $1.45bn, was the largest sale of a UK biotech company on record, but was soon dwarfed by the $6.9bn acquisition of GW Pharmaceuticals by Jazz. These announcements drew global attention to the UK life science and healthtech sectors, and form part of a growing trend in these industries for increased funding, commercial and M&A activity.
There is no doubt that consumer demand for sustainable options is on the increase. It is now becoming a huge factor in the choices buyers make when shopping for goods. A recent survey conducted by Deloitte found that 32% of consumers are highly engaged with adopting a more sustainable lifestyle, with 61% of respondents saying they have limited their use of single use plastic, and 34% have chosen brands with environmentally sustainable practices and values.
Whether you are running a fledgling startup from a home office or heading up an international company employing tens of thousands of employees across the world, the challenge over the past 16 months has been the same. Those business owners who successfully navigated their business through the COVID-19 pandemic should take pride in coming through such an uncertain period in one piece.
It’s fair to say that over the past 16 months or so, we’ve become more digitally-connected than ever before. We can’t underestimate the roles that data and digital technologies continue to play in helping small businesses survive during the pandemic. Almost every interaction we all undertake every day produces data. This creates endless opportunities, but with opportunity comes responsibility - particularly when it comes to how data is used.
The past year has seen many industries navigate a multitude of challenges and shifts to remain operational. However, as we emerge from a post-pandemic landscape, it’s time for organisations to gather their bearings and analyse how their business has fared over the past year and what long-term implications the global lockdown could have had on them.
Education doesn’t finish after school. With further qualifications required to move up in fields as diverse as healthcare, beauty therapy and construction, there’s a huge opportunity for edtech to help employers manage training. But how do you introduce your product to industries with plenty of trainees, but low tech adoption?
Companies providing services like home workouts, high-end meal kits and even crochet tutorials all have boomed during the pandemic. Not everyone has had a smooth path through the pandemic though; businesses have had to become more agile and invest in technology. Many entrepreneurs and individuals have adjusted their attitudes, spending more time on worthy causes or making sure they are planning for their own futures.
The commute as we knew it may be gone for good, new research conducted by e-bike subscription service DASH Rides reveals. DASH and Sapio Research surveyed over 2,000 city-dwelling, full-time workers, who used to work primarily in the office and now work primarily at home, and discovered that three quarters of those returning to the office will be actively avoiding public transport or seeking new ways to travel.
As we approach the end of compulsory remote working, many businesses are retaining some element within their operations. Remote working technology enabled virtual connectivity when physical proximity wasn’t possible, but how has this affected business operations in the long-term? Here we explore the impact of remote working technology on business and society.
Are work ethics losing their relevance to the pursuit of profits and ambitious objectives of growth? In contemporary times, there is a paradigm shift in the hiring strategies of most organisations. The great focus of business owners is to hire employees with versatile skills and creative perspectives. Without a doubt, this is the way forward to create an agile and competent workforce. As a business owner, you need an accomplished workforce exhibiting inspiring skills. However, what about their work ethics? Are you underplaying the significance of work ethics?
Fraud has always affected business and it can be particularly devastating for those companies that are in the start-up phase. A recent report has found that fraud (particularly cyber fraud) has increased by 28% in the last year, largely driven by the Covid-19 situation. This article looks at the warning signs, what might be done to stop it and what to do if you expect that it might be happening.
New customer demands and fierce competition: the pressure on companies to innovate is high across all sectors – and established companies and young startups alike are struggling to meet these demands. Increasingly, this is leading to cooperation between corporates and startups. In this way, the speed and agility of young companies meet the professional structures and long-standing know-how of established companies. Both startups and corporates can benefit from each other's strengths in such a collaboration and ignite a firework of innovation together.
While many industries suffered in 2020 with the ongoing health crisis, cyber crime and in particular ransomware grew significantly. With more time spent online by individuals, and the switch to remote working for many businesses, bad actors recognised the opportunities for increased cyber attacks and grabbed them with both hands. The bad news - this trend is going nowhere in 2021.
The economy has shifted. More and more people are becoming business owners or self-employed, so why are so few entrepreneurial skills taught in schools? From a young age we should all be learning how to innovate, collaborate and communicate effectively so that we are better prepared for the world of work. Edtech is perfectly equipped do this effectively, as well as encourage lifelong learning so that as adults we can all upskill and reskill easily.
It’s a challenge, being a challenger brand today. The relative ease and speed with which you can bring a company or product to market means the volume of brands in any given space is huge, so conveying genuine differentiation is hard. And staying the course, building a challenger that lasts, is even harder.
Running a small business can be hugely rewarding but also hugely frustrating. You have the perfect product, website and sales process in front of you, but getting in front of the perfect customer, and then scaling this, is a battle that we have all have to face. Often, SMEs will be time poor and resource limited, with individuals covering a range of different roles, making it hard to scale effectively.
The future of the office remains uncertain, and the recent speculation around changes to the right to work away from the office only muddies the waters further. Regardless, many large businesses such as Amazon are already planning their return to an office-centric culture to enable collaboration. Google also revealed that 60% of its workforce would be in the office a few days a week, with only 20% of the workforce working remotely.
When you start your own business, it is your own idea and pretty much becomes your baby; the decisions, choices and growth are all within your own making. Most entrepreneurs will spend the first few months of business fully focused on their vision and what needs doing, but once you start growing a team you need to lead and be there for them.
Picture this: an employee sits down at their desk at 10am from their home office setup. They are welcomed by their personal digital assistant, which provides a quick brief about the day ahead. Upcoming meetings and projects are flagged, reminding them to make the necessary preparations, and seek out the information needed to ensure they can confidently put their questions, ideas and suggestions forward.
In today’s world where technology continues to innovate, and automation is a large key to success, the benefits of using multiple SaaS (Software as a Service) are phenomenal. From subscription focused ones, such as Profitwell, which works to reduce churn and shows Monthly Revenue Per User to team communication-based products such as Slack, which allow internal and external communication and automation to happen in synchronicity.
Regardless of what business you are in, a data security breach is an increasingly likely scenario that all businesses must mitigate. With escalating cybercrime, the widespread growth in Cloud computing, and the explosion in mobile devices and varying tech and app use amongst employees and partners; key aspects of enterprise security are now, and will forever be, beyond our control.
Sustainability in business practice is becoming more of a necessity than ever before. Customers are making moves to living a more sustainable lifestyle and therefore expect business leaders and their companies to follow suit. It can be a minefield knowing where to begin when it comes to acting sustainably, it’s an incredibly broad term and can be confusing to know what steps to take first.
More people than ever before are using their smartphones to browse the internet - 90% of the world’s internet population in fact! As such, it is essential that start-ups are equipped to deal with the demand by optimising their websites for mobile and developing apps to help reach and engage with customers more effectively.
When I hear that female founders have been the hardest hit due to the effects of COVID-19 and the UK’s numerous lockdowns, it pains me greatly, not least because, studies such as The Rose Review estimate that if women in the UK were founding businesses at similar rates as they are in other countries, about £200bn would be added to the UK economy!
Whilst many people enjoy watching the sparring between business angels on TV this type of investing may feel like something for others i.e., the millionaire business owners. Because of this, rather than exploring this exciting asset class, we put our investments into safer options we are more familiar with such as mutual funds and stocks. Gavin Heys, Envestors Private Investment Club explains.
Legal & Governance Hub, are a business law consultancy supporting startups, scaleups and SMEs. I am Gulnaz the Founder who trained at a startup boutique law firm, which was my first real exposure to learning about business. I worked in marketing, finance and even sales with my own client following! Starting my career in a startup was a great move, I had lots of responsibility and autonomy.
According to MoneySuperMarket, around 22% of the UK’s two million freelancers are busy delivering essential business support. As more companies embrace hybrid working models, recruiting external consultants can complement the skills of in-house staff. Here Ashmita Das, CEO of Kolabtree, the freelance platform for scientists, explains how small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can integrate freelancers successfully.
When launching their business, entrepreneurs get very excited at the prospects of finding clients, but also anxious about how to do it. While there are many priorities for them in terms of business operations, building up the right teams, or maintaining their cash flow, organic marketing isn’t one that should be neglected or postponed.
Over the tumultuous year we've just faced, productivity has been challenged in ways most had never considered. The strain of financial, career and health uncertainty has been a formidable foe for employees and employers alike. As we celebrate World Productivity Day this year, we do so with the learnings of the past 12 months under our belt.
Starting over with a new business idea or career path is never easy, but sometimes it is absolutely necessary (this applies to other things in life as well). I have started over multiple times. I quit a stable job in HR to start my own business. People called me crazy, but I followed my dreams and persevered. It was anything but easy, but it brought me to where I am today and I wouldn’t change that for the world.
If office space providers are to survive the shift to greater flexible working, they need to keep up with the increasing demand from businesses for shorter, flexible contracts. Long term, restrictive office commitments no longer appeal to SMEs, who are increasingly looking for complete flexibility in their requirements, to scale up and down as required, and remain agile.
Do you believe the next generation of tech giants will be European? At Scale-Up Europe, we do. That’s why, a few days ago, our group of stakeholders from across the world of European technology innovation presented a shared ambition for the continent to house 10 technology companies valued more than €100bn by 2030.
Writing a compelling job ad to entice graduates can be challenging, especially if writing isn’t your strong suit. How can you create the best possible job ad to attract the best talent to your business? Based on many years of experience, I have put together the perfect formula to attract stellar talent.
Closing the skills gap in organisations and industries around the world has a key role to play in our pandemic recovery. Factors such as geography, poor infrastructure, financial hardship and a lack of public resources are preventing many from accessing training that could transform their futures. Yet recent research shows that if digitally lagging sectors—such as manufacturing, mining, healthcare and education—double their use of digital tools, Europe alone could add €2.5 trillion to its GDP by 2025.
Marketing spend has risen to record levels since the pandemic. PR and marketing have become business lifelines, boosting resilience and reputation throughout a challenging time. A large part of the focus has been on retaining customers and marketing efforts have become highly targeted with brand loyalty as a key driver. Approaches are increasingly personalised with customers treated as individuals and humanised to drive authenticity and credibility.
Having a strong reliable team is at the heart of building any successful sustainable business that is why investors say they invest in people not ideas. Many entrepreneurs overthink the ideas, the plans, the strategies, and underestimate the importance of building the team of people who will actually execute and turn these ideas into reality.
Following the ongoing discussion that youth unemployment is so high, Richard Evans, a professional careers mentor and Forbes 30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneur 2019 shares his thoughts on why the issues run much deeper than the recent pandemic. Richard has conducted over 600 interviews throughout his career and mentored over 100 students into the UK’s most competitive universities and companies as a careers mentor at The Profs.
Businesses are often preoccupied with 'innovation'. Far from being merely a buzzword, the concept in fact reflects the necessary and consistent iteration that drives markets forwards and allows those who invest smartly a robust edge over their competitors. The trouble is, truly game-changing innovations are vanishingly rare.
The way in which businesses across the country work has transformed exponentially since March 2020, with entire workforces suddenly told to operate remotely. Some organisations thrived, with their cloud solutions and unified communication tools empowering them to adopt a remote working ethos with ease. On the other hand, those with more rigid and antiquated processes have found this sudden shift jarring.
Tech Nation’s ‘The future UK tech built’ 2021 report, published earlier this year, revealed that the UK currently sits third in the world for venture capital (VC) investment in tech companies, behind only China and the US, with $15bn pledged last year. Great news for the UK’s emerging businesses, right? Well, Simon Philips, CEO of ScaleUp Capital, tells a different story.
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced businesses of all shape and size to adapt, adjust and pivot in response to the ‘new normal’. Whilst larger businesses - who suffer from being less nimble than their startup counterparts - have faced unique difficulties, startups – who lack the cash reserves and structure of larger businesses – have also faced their own challenges. Many startups have had to fundamentally reconsider their business models and how they operate as a result.
As businesses develop, so do their ideas and offerings. This often leads to an expansion in a business’ IP portfolio. Due to the public disclosure associated with Intellectual Property (IP) rights, monitoring your competitors’ application filings may provide insight into their future offerings and business direction.