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Step 5: Facilities and Staff
Starting on the Right Path
Seven Steps for Help You Start Your Business
1. Take a Good Look at Yourself
2. Identify Your Customers
3. Build a Support Network
4. Make it Official
5. Facilities and Staff
6. Write a Business Plan
7. Obtain Financing
Keep It Going
Step 5: Facilities and Staff
Take your time when making decisions related to the location of the business, equipment purchases, and the hiring of staff. Early and careful consideration of all these things is important to the success of your business.
Operating your business from your home
A home-based business can be a good option. Check with your hamlet or city to find out if you are permitted to operate your business from home.
Home-based businesses not only help you avoid the high cost of renting or purchasing space for your business, but can help you save money on child care costs, and can have tax advantages. A business operated out of the home may also allow you more time with family.
Operating your business outside of the home
A business with a “store-front” has high visibility and profile in your community – essential for many sales and services. A good business location contributes to a more professional image. You may want to locate your business near other businesses where it can be easier to attract customers.
You will need insurance to operate a business in Nunavut. Insurance can be a complex and expensive issue. Contact an insurance broker and use your network for help.
Equipment requirements for the business
You will also have to make decisions about equipment you may need. Some businesses will require significant expenditures for machinery and equipment. Do you rent or purchase? Pay cash or borrow the money? Buy new or used? These decisions can make or break your business. Paying cash for a new truck when you’re getting started may leave you with no working capital when you really need it later on. This is a common cause of business failure.
Why hire staff?
Do you really need staff? Many small businesses are managed and run effectively by the owner alone. Of course some businesses must hire staff because the workload or long hours are too much for one person. Sometimes the business needs special skills only new staff can provide. Only hire staff if it will produce a direct improvement in the performance of your business. As an employer, your biggest cost will be the wages and benefits you pay your staff.
Who to hire?
Know exactly what you expect from your employees. Your employees may require specific skills, education, or experience. They must be hard working and easy to get along with; and friendly to your customers.
Where to find your employees?
Job ads in the newspaper and on job posting websites are good ways to attract potential employees. Let people in your network know you are looking for staff – the best people often are recommended to you by others who know your business and its needs.
When do I need to hire?
Give yourself ample time to hire new employees. Carefully calculate the benefits and the costs. This will be one of your most important business decisions.
The Canada Nunavut Business Service Centre provides a general guideline of responsibilities and legislation for employers. You can access this guideline at: http://www.canadabusiness.ca/eng/page/2835/