Site Established:
Year 2000

Start In Business
Bookmark and Share
 home
 Start-up flow chart: Business Equipment.
The essentials.

Related Pages
In detail:




What equipment do you need to get started?

The bare necessities.

You will probably need; a telephone, desk, computer, printer and perhaps a fax to get a business 'in motion' and for general, day-to-day, administration.

Telecoms.

When getting quotes from telecommunication companies with regards to installing business telephone lines, remember to ask if a deposit is required for start-ups. If so, ask how much per line. BT has been known to quote an installation fee of about £80 per line - which sounds reasonable. They may, then, call you back a day after your 'initial set-up call' to tell you that they require an additional deposit of, perhaps, £300 per line before any work is done. So, if you are budgeting for 3 lines, be aware that you could find that your set-up costs increase by nearly a thousand pounds above your original estimates. This can be frustrating if you, now, require extra time to raise more funds and, in between times, have signed a lease for an office or ordered an expensive phone system based on a certain number of lines. If a deposit is potentially required, you will be more inclined to limit the number of lines required to start-up and add additional ones once you have a longer track record as a BT customer. Your organisation's credit rating is used to determine whether or not BT require a deposit.

Don't forget that you can use virtual office services that may reduce line-rental charges and staffing costs.

Independent advice on telecoms and the internet for businesses is available at www.telecomsadvice.org.uk

Bluebox Communications offer new and 2nd user telephone systems,
and much more.

It is worth mentioning that there are a number 'online telecoms companies' that offer call-forwarding, auto-answering and online-fax services free of charge.

A YAC Number ( www.yac.com ) , for example, is a free service which gives you 'One Number' for all your incoming phone calls, faxes and voicemail.

This is handy :
• if you are running a small business from home and wish to seperate your work from leisure.
• if you can't justify buying a fax machine.
• if you are waiting to move into offices - and need some temporary office telecoms.
• if BT have run out of telephone lines in your neck-of-the-woods.

Buying a fax.

If you do decide to buy a fax, remember to find one that allows you to turn-off those annoying 'automatic report' print outs. You'll save a substantial amount on ink and paper!

Many faxes double-up as a printer / scanner / copier or telephone / ansa machine - so it's possible to achieve some savings on other equipment when making your purchase.

How much do they cost?
Browse some 'faxes for sale' on Amazon.co.uk to get a rough guide on prices.

StartInBusiness has partnered up with efax the worlds most popular and reliable fax to email provider with over 11 million subscibers globally any.

eFax allows you to send and recieve faxes by email any where in the world, straight from or to your inbox. Choose from hundreds of local towns and cities or national numbers, set up is easy and can be done in minutes. eFax offers a 30 day trial to get you started, - click here to find out more or call quoting this reference number 53214


 

Computers and software for business.

Though not essential, most businesses would benefit from at least one computer. They can be a useful tool to help write letters, promotional material, design stationery, run customer databases and manage your accounts etc.. They can also cause pain and frustration when they don't work. So, always make sure you have your important information in hard-copy format! (Information on how to computerise your accounts.)

Buying a Computer

These days, a low-spec PC will be more than capable of running all the general business-admin tasks that you may need to do.

The big retailers
The big retailers, like PC World, offer some great 'PC Packages' which are extremely hard to argue with. Buying from a local store also gives you some assurance that when problems occur - you don't have to travel too far to moan on a face-to-face basis.

You will probably save money on the cost of the operating system - (it's cheaper if you buy it with the PC) - and may get other useful equipment (like a printer or scanner) bundled into the deal.

Building your own
If you already have some experience, own some working PC parts or can't find a package to suit, you may be able to build a better PC Package at less cost:

1. Read-up about the latest offerings on the PC market.
2. Buy all the bits online - at dabs.com or ebuyer.com
3. Build it yourself - adding software to taste.

Remember - on top of the hardware, you will need to pay for an operating system (e.g software like Microsoft Windows) and some other software, like Microsoft Office, which will make your PC useful. So, if you are comparing prices of a 'self-built PC' to a retailers 'PC Package Deal' - make sure you compare like-with-like.

See our business software store.

Office furniture

Getting the right office furniture is very important. Having good furniture benefits your health, working practices and can even reduce the cost of employing and retaining staff. Who likes to work in a horrible environment?

Have you 'gone Swedish' yet?
See www.Ikea.com

See our list of furniture suppliers or browse the office equipment free-ads.

Other equipment

This is a general guide and so we can't discuss every bit of equipment that you will need to run your business. You might find something in our free-ads section.

Asset finance - hire purchase and leasing

See our information on business finance or our list of finance brokers for more information about asset finance.


Detailed information on using finance to aquire capital equipment for your business is available in the DTI booklet: Asset Finance: Hire Purchase and Leasing
(Order it at : www.dti.gov.uk : URN 02/745 )

Don't go mad!

There are a million and one things that you could spend your money on while you are starting a business. Although there are certain essential pieces of equipment that you may need, there will be luxuries that you can get by without. Careful planning is important. As time goes by your needs may change radically and you could discover that an expensive purchase can soon become redundant.

As your business grows, remember to loosen up a little on the spending in correlation with the performance of the business. Thus, ensuring that your staff are rewarded with a better working environment and up-to-date equipment. There's nothing more demoralising than having a stingy boss who would prefer to keep the cash rather than buy a bit of kit that would make a job a million times easier to do.

Business equipment Free Ads.

To help you get the equipment that you need, without breaking the bank, we have recently set up a 'business equipment free ads' page.

You can browse through the adverts or place a 'business equipment wanted' advert all for FREE!!




'Start in Business' Best Sellers :

The Beermat Entrepreneur : Advice on Turning a Good Idea into a Great Business.
How to Make Millions With Your Ideas : An Entrepreneur's Guide.
Richard Branson : The Authorised Biography
Motley Fool : Make your Child a Millionaire.
Hackers and Painters : What impact will programmers have on the rest of us?

Legal Document Templates :
Trading : Debtors & Creditors, Contracts & Letters etc.
Corporate : Corporate Docs & Forms, Company Admin, Companies House Forms
Employment : Recruitment, Staff Management, Discipline & Dismissal
Health & Safety : Health & Safety Statements, H & S Forms

Retailer's and Trader's Resources :

UK Wholesale Directory + Product Database :
SimplyWholesale : Find suppliers & view live wholesale offers.

Wholesale Directory - List of Suppliers :
UK-Trader's Wholesale Guide : Used by thousands of traders. Instant download.

Business Software :
Business Plan Software : Generate a solid business plan.

Gadgets / Future :
Electronic Product Code ( EPC ) Network : Research into the future of products
Buying Gadgets : The first Bluetooth products on the market.
Making Gadgets : Programming wireless devices with Java 2 ME.

Fun Stuff / Entertainment :
Ghana Soundz, Music : Probably the best music you will ever hear
The Office, TV Series : Useful when training your staff!
Need a Better Office Ambiance? : Sound like a call centre on the telephone!