If you want to set up your own business as an IT Trainer, it doesn't require a lot of money...this article is written from experience. The cost is low because training will be provided on the premises of clients (for example, Computer Training Centers or Company Training rooms).
To open your new business, take the following steps:
- Name - Choose a unique name for your business.
- Registration - Register your business. (In the UK, it is free to register a one man business.)
- Email - Open up an email account for it. It is advisable not to use Yahoo, hotmail etc. Your business will have more credibility if you have a private email which only costs about $30 a year. This will give you a domain, so you will have an email address and a website in your business name.
- Communication - Have a telephone line for your business and a fax machine. It is possible to use the same line for your fax machine and telephone.
- Address - If you can afford to rent an office, do so. Alternatively you can use a room at home which can be converted into an office. Otherwise, rent a post office box so all your mail can be directed there and that way no clients visit your house.
- Stationary - Once you have sorted out the address, email and contact numbers, you can proceed to have your business stationary prepared. This includes letter heads and business cards. The companies that do this normally have logos you can choose from. Otherwise, create your own logo.
- Business Account - For this the bank requires, proof of ID, your business letter head and sometimes a little amount deposited into the account which would be yours anyway. This takes about 7 – 14 days to set up and you will be given a check book in your business name, a paying in book and a bank card.
- Keep Records - Keep financial records. You could use an Excel spreadsheet to record details of your expenditure and details of incoming monies. This is important and will make it easy for when you prepare the Annual Accounts for your business. Keep receipts of everything you buy for your business. On this scale, you do not need an accountant. If you keep records very well, you can do the yearly accounts yourself.
- Invoice - Prepare a standard invoice for your business, to give clients once you have carried out training for them. Print out your invoices on letter head. (Check if you have to be registered for VAT; not all businesses have to.)
- Evaluation – Prepare an evaluation form and give this to clients to fill in after training. Feedback is important and helps improve the business. If you provide good service, people will refer you.
- Equipment – The basic things you need to buy are a computer, printer, telephone and a fax machine. A photocopier is optional as you can make photocopies outside. Obviously you will need learning materials to carry out training.
- Business Contracts - Utilize the Internet for this. There are many ways you can get customers. Advertise on websites. (A lot of websites allow free advertising.) Do mail shots to companies that could require your service. Try preparing posters as well.
- Maintaining and Growing your Business - There are a lot of Government funded organizations that are dedicated to supporting and giving advice to small businesses such as Business Link. Find a few, register with them. Also, this is particularly helpful for when you want to start expanding your business. You might need a business loan from your bank later on and these organizations will help you with your business plan for the loan application.
Finally, it is important that you find out about businesses who provide similar services. This will give you an idea of what people are providing in the market, price ranges, etc. You can also enhance your company's chances of success by taking some online classes in business technologies and in marketing. This will also help you know how to get an edge over them, by taking yours a step further in the service you provide.