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 […]

header narnia corporate party

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 […]

board meeting

The story of one financial director’s money-saving strategy

I told them: “It’s bad news, folks. Income fell hard and fast in the third quarter.” Sombrely, I traced along a plummeting red line with the light of a laser pointer. “We might be in some bother.” Fortunately, I’ve concocted a solution to our heavy-spending problem. “We’re going to take a harder-line with difficult clients. They’re leeching the life out of us with their ‘mates-rates’ and devil-may-care approach to payment. “We’re chasing late, inaccurate or unpaid invoices, and most of our clients say ‘the cheque’s in the post!’ We know it isn’t, they know it isn’t, but we go along […]

paying at the till

Because I’m worth it

You work hard, you deserve a little expenses perk every now and then. Accounts won’t notice, will they?   1. When you’re buying…   2. When the company’s buying…   3. You’re stuffed from dinner but you still have £10 left in your meal allowance…   4. You weren’t going to drink tonight – but the boss is buying…   5. Room service suddenly becomes reasonable…   6. You collect a receipt for absolutely everything…   7. You could walk…or expense a taxi…   8. You get a blank receipt from the taxi driver…   9. You upgrade your small […]

currency coins

WANTED: Employees caught with their fingers in the jar

Why would anyone pocket cash from an employer? You know you’re a fair boss. You make sure sick leave is paid, you make developing staff skills a priority, and after a hard week,  everyone has a beer in their hand on Friday at 4pm. You trust and respect your employees – you wouldn’t have hired them otherwise! – and you believe people (largely) aren’t opportunistic. However, even the most exemplary cashier, executive or CEO shoulders their own burden away from the workplace. They face impossible and pressurised situations that you know nothing about. Expenses fraud and theft at work is […]

taking money from wallet

Hey, Big Spender!

Think it’s just you who has trouble with expenses? Whether it’s the pile of expense forms to sift through, lost receipts or claims that have been exaggerated, take heart, you’re not alone. Which industries are the UK’s big spenders when it comes to expenses?   1. Academic We know that tuition fees at UK universities are hefty, averaging around £9,000. But how much of those fees fund staff expenses? Last year, a senior official at Bangor University was lambasted by the media for spending £45,000 of expenses in her first year, including £10,000 to take staff to New York where […]

employee spending

Will an employee spend less if they’re happier?

It’s well known that shopping reduces sadness. In a study that reviews the benefits of retail therapy, Professors at the University of Michigan discovered that making purchasing decisions is a mood-boosting power play, and a sure-fire way to feel better fast. What does this have to do with your business? Psychologist, Graham Jones, says: “There appear to be two factors involved in happiness at work. One is the job itself – many jobs are poorly designed and thought through, leading to frustration, annoyance, boredom and so on. The second factor is the immediate boss you work for. If they respect […]