people meeting

What does an EU divorce mean for small businesses?

It’s the beginning of a new era. Article 50 has been triggered. After much anticipation, Theresa May has started the divorce proceedings from the EU. The process of negotiating that separation will now begin in earnest. But despite some fears the pound would receive a further blow and fall against currencies around the world, it has maintained a steady footing. So, what happens to British SMEs now as they try to ‘keep calm and carry on’? Professor Vikas S. Shah, a member of the UK Industrial Development Advisory Board and an entrepreneur with 20 years’ experience in business, said there […]

Are companies on the line if employees phone & drive?

This month there has been a clampdown on drivers using mobile phones at the wheel – with the number of penalty points now doubling to six, as well as a potential £200 fine and even disqualification. The issue of drivers using phones is widespread and it is hoped the changes will deter people from taking the risk. But what happens if your employee is caught using a phone at the wheel? According to Danny Clarke, operations director for employment law expert ELAS, companies need to be mindful of what guidance they give employees. “Do they allow staff to use Bluetooth […]

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Culture shock – why a country’s body language and customs mean the world in business

We’ve all done it. Visited a new country, not got up to speed on the cultural norms and then made a faux pas. But while a cultural misdemeanour gives you something to talk about with your friends, a lack of cultural awareness when visiting other countries, could cost you big in business.   Simon Taylor is a senior leadership consultant for Kaplan, with years of experience in international diplomacy having worked for the Ministry of Defence and as a lecturer at Sandhurst Royal Military Academy. Simon has many stories about navigating through the sensitivities of different countries. One such story […]

employer drafting expenses policy

How to create (and enforce) a no-nonsense expenses policy

Expenses are the bugbear of both businesses and employees. They have the potential to cause conflict and financial damage if not communicated in the right way and can be tricky to manage especially when you add temporary staff, freelancers and consultants into the mix. So how do you avoid an expenses horror story? Here are some golden rules to follow. Get it down in black and white Clare Lassiter, HR consultant for Pure Human Resources, believes failing to set the boundaries results in the most time being wasted for businesses. “The most important thing is to give clarity about what […]

Animated map of export countries

The best countries to do business with right now

British businesses face the challenge of turning a profit and growing revenues despite the decline in the pound making it potentially more costly to buy from abroad. Importing from America for example is now more expensive with the pound rate 13% down against the dollar compared with one year ago. On the flip side, this of course means that for Americans, British goods have become 13% cheaper and a more attractive import option. FairFX Brexit Hub Read our latest articles, commentary and currency updates on the affect of Brexit.   The US isn’t the only country where British businesses could […]

wall street sign and flags

7 things to consider when managing currency for business

The past year has been an interesting one for British SMEs. The EU referendum and the US election have taken their toll on currency markets creating fluctuations in the cost of overseas travel and expenses and buying and selling overseas. As of 15th February 2017, the pound is down 14% against the US dollar and 9% against the Euro compared with this time last year. For businesses, this means spending money overseas has become a lot more expensive. Business profits, cash flow and competitiveness can all be affected by exchange rate movements, meaning a keen eye on currency risk is […]

boss calling phone

The right to disconnect: Is having ‘always-on’ employees good for business?

Picture this. You’re in a job interview and are questioned on your willingness to pick-up work emails outside of office hours. Eager to prove you’re a hard-worker, you say it isn’t a problem. One point in the bag, right? Wrong. In ‘burnout Britain’, you’d be forgiven for thinking that being ‘always-on’ is commendable, but could this attitude be frowned upon and even against the law in the UK in the future?   On 1st January, 2017, legislation came into effect in France dubbed ‘the Right to Disconnect’ which seeks to encourage a better work-life balance for workers. As a result, […]

statue of liberty

Trump power: What Brits need to know about doing business in the US

This time last year, you’d have been forgiven for thinking that the controversial Donald Trump would never have made it to the White House. But his campaign showed the power of getting your communication strategy right. So, what lessons can we learn from Trump to position UK firms on the front foot when doing business in the US?   Know your audience “Drain the swamp” and “build a wall”. While Trump was provocative and sensational, his slogans were built on issues the public were concerned about. “People looked for meaning in what both parties said and Trump’s pledges resonated with […]

woman in airport lounge

Keep your expenses form. I quit!

For two years, I was a frequent business traveller, flying around 800 miles a week. The company booked flights, hotels and parking on my behalf. I filled out an expenses form for smaller costs. It was all very easy. When the finance director went on maternity leave, an operations manager absorbed her role. It’s a family-run business and members of the senior staff often doubled up roles to fill the gaps, so a move like this wasn’t uncommon. Little did we know, an innocent, doubling-up exercise would make work really challenging.   One week, I was booked into different airport […]

airport plane

Can you claim compensation if your employee’s flight is delayed?

In August, research by the BBC revealed that air passengers using London Gatwick face the most flight delays in the UK. On average, passengers experienced delays of 18 minutes per flight. Consumer group Which? found that of one million flights, nearly half didn’t arrive on time, and more than 10,000 were delayed by more than three hours. If your employee is one of the unlucky passengers in limbo at the airport, can you claim for the inconvenience? FairFX spoke to Flight Delay Lawyer at Bott & Co Solicitors Kevin Clarke, and employment law specialist at Ramsdens Solicitors, Gareth Dando about […]

group of party guests

Quiz: Which naughty office party guest are you?

Office party season is upon us. That means you’ll soon be boogying with your boss and hoping that you don’t do anything too embarrassing (or else you’ll be the talk of the office throughout January). However, there’s always someone that gets a bit too boisterous after a few drinks or has a little cry after the toast. The office is full of characters that reveal themselves to be naughty office party guests by the end of the night. Do you know which naughty office party guest you are though? Take our fun quiz to find out whether you’re a Weepy […]

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How to throw an unforgettable corporate event

Tasked with the Christmas party? Solely responsible for boosting staff morale and building client relationships? It’s a familiar brief for HRs who are simultaneously encouraged to ooze generosity but ensure price per head is firmly under £150, (to avoid National Insurance charges obviously!) A good corporate event can kick start a new business relationship, lift team spirits and boost productivity in the weeks that follow your soiree.  As the Christmas party season jingles to life, FairFX spoke to star of Channel 4’s The Millionaire Party Planner, Liz Taylor – and  La Belle Assiette’s private dining expert, Millie Ashbee, about how […]