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Getting quality business support that’s right for your business.

05/12/2019 Think Piece

It’s been a tricky year in business. Our new Growth Hub Manager, Andrew Raby, is keen to ensure that our support services are meeting the needs of businesses in a fast moving economy.

Across our patch, particularly in agriculture, we’ve had the same national uncertainties as everybody else, but we’ve also had a good number of deeply rural businesses having to deal with the impact of flooding over the summer. 

On the flipside, we also have a large number of businesses in our area who are looking to deliver ambitious plans for growth over the coming years. It’s always hugely enjoyable to witness the growth of hub spaces and innovation centres for entrepreneurs across the patch. Bringing ideas to life as actionable business innovations is crucial for the future of our economy. Whichever way you look at it, businesses are in the market for good quality business support. Step forward the regional Growth Hub. Knowing where to turn to for help and advice can be difficult for businesses, especially in today’s crowded market where everyone is trying to sell you something you don’t need, or don’t have the budget to buy. Over many years of working directly with businesses across numerous roles in banking, universities and the public sector, I know that it’s hard to know where to turn for reliable, impartial help and advice, especially advice that is free. The Growth Hub network, operated by Local Enterprise Partnerships, aims to answer these needs. Growth Hubs are locally based organisations who specialise in helping businesses establish, grow and make improvements. Best of all, the Growth Hub services are free to people in the region, and they provide expert advice often coming from people who have run successful businesses themselves. Growth Hubs act as comprehensive one-stop-shops for established businesses trying to navigate tricky areas like breaking into export markets, building new manufacturing units, expanding and increasing productivity. They also assist people wanting to set up businesses through guides, toolkits and advice. Routes to funding is another area that the Growth Hub can assist with, helping assess eligibility and get access to money to unlock business potential. How’s Business, the Growth Hub for York, North Yorkshire and East Riding, has an online, telephone and face to face offering for businesses in the region. Visiting the website, businesses can find toolkits, e-books and articles across a range of subjects. Our telephone helpline is a great first point of access to enquire about funding opportunities. Our three experienced Business Relationship Managers are able to offer up to 12 hours of intensive support from growing businesses. Our Growth Hub team is available to talk to businesses about preparing for Brexit, and how they can continue to grow when the UK is no longer a part of the EU.  Whether that’s finding new supply chain opportunities, or selling into new markets, we are ready and able to help businesses get a clear picture of what they need to put in place now, to be ready for the future. The Business Relationship Managers currently have availability to see businesses looking for help and advice. This can range across the whole spectrum, from help getting started writing a strategic marketing plan, to advice on how to effectively navigate the funding landscape, and how to prepare your business for exporting. You don’t have to be an enormous company with a multi-million pound turnover to seek their advice either, the Business Relationship Managers will help businesses of all sizes. Best of all, if the Growth Hub can’t help, they will connect businesses up with partner agencies and organisations who may be able to. It’s a win-win solution for businesses wanting to reach that little bit further. Why not make it a new year’s resolution to get in touch? Having taken up the position of Growth Hub Manager, I’m keen to ensure that our support services are meeting the needs of businesses in a fast moving economy. Businesses are operating in increasingly competitive markets and anything they can do to gain an edge, they should do in order to maximise their chances of survival. My team are available to come in and help businesses who are at a crossroads, facing challenges, or simply wanting to know how they can increase productivity. We can act as critical friends and mentors whilst they try and make difficult decisions, link them up with other people who may be able to help, or point them in the right direction to get funding. It’s a no brainer really, especially since the services we offer are all free to access. You can get impartial, expert advice that’s free with our Growth Hub team. Visit Andrew Raby Growth Hub Manager for the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Enterprise Partnership.
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