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Writing your business plan

Setting the strategy for your business

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Why you need a business plan?

A business plan is a written document that describes your business. It covers objectives, strategies, sales, marketing and financial forecasts. 

Your business plan is the key document to set out what aims and objectives you have and how to get there.  

A business plan helps you to:

  • clarify your business idea
  • spot potential problems
  • set out your goals
  • measure your progress

You'll need a business plan if you want to secure investment or a loan. It can also help to convince customers, suppliers and potential employees to support you. 

With a clear strategy objectives and goals that you are looking to achieve, and how you'll measure your progress, your business will continue to stay true to its path to growth. 

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How to Write a Business Plan

The following website resources provide a series of guides and templates and help on how to write a business plan, along with checklists on how to make a success of your business and how to support the beginning of your business. 

The links provided are from some of the most trusted and respected business information and support organisations in the country. 

Sample business plans and guides from Barclays

A good small business plan defines exactly what you want to achieve and how you plan to achieve it.

Sample business plans and guides from Lloyds

You'll find it helpful to put together a business plan to plot the future of your business from where you are now, to where you want to be in the future, and how you intend to get there.

Sample business plans and guides from HSBC

A good business plan focuses the mind as well as helping to secure finance and support

Online business planner from RBS

RBS has an interactive online business planner. A similar tool is available from NatWest.

Business plan advice and guide from ICAEW

A pdf download of ICAEW's guide on writing a business plan

CIMA's Essential checklist for making a success of your business

A pdf download from the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants

The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants guide to writing a business plan

Guides for start-ups and new businesses

Help with a business plan if you're out of work

New Enterprise Allowance offers support with developing your business plan, as well as financial and mentoring help.

British Library Business & IP Centre

The British Library IP Centre has a wide range of business planning resources

Click here for more information

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