Self-employed to-do list

3 Things Self-Employed People Should Do Right from the Start!


For pretty much all my working life, I’ve been self-employed and it’s fair to say I’ve learnt a lot since I first started out around 15 years ago. I’ve learned that to survive as a self-employed person, you need to have a great amount of drive, discipline and you need to be willing to take a few risks here and there. When I look back now, though, there are a few things that I wish I’d known when I first started out, just to make things easier and more successful from the start.

With this in mind, I want to mention 3 important things today that all newly self-employed people should have on their radar right from the very beginning, so that they can start their self-employed journey off on the right footing.

Take Your Business Finances Seriously

One of the biggest things a lot of new business owners struggle with is keeping on top of their finances. While there are lots of good entrepreneurs out there with great ideas, not all of them are great with the money side of things. One excellent way to stay on top of your business finances right from the start is to use some online accounting software to invoice clients, record your expenses and more.

Using online accounts software from companies like Sage* can help you to keep a keen eye on how much you’re earning, what you’re spending and also how much you are likely to owe to the tax man at the end of the tax year. This way you can keep some money aside as you go along, to prevent you from being hit with an unexpected tax bill that you don’t really have the money for. You will also be able to see whether you are really making the kind of money you think you are, or whether – after your expenses have been considered – you need to make some adjustments to the price of your product or service to be able to make a sustainable profit.

Think about Your Pension

One of the big downsides of self-employment is the fact that you miss out on a lot of the benefits and perks that come along with being employed. I’m specifically thinking of things like holiday pay, sick pay and most importantly, a pension plan.

If you decide to go self-employed then I would recommend setting up some kind of personal pension right from the start, as the years can quickly pass by and you’ll want to avoid saving or investing too late down the line. In the UK, one good way to do this is to set up a SIPP or Self-Invested Personal Pension. A SIPP is a tax-efficient way for UK residents to save and invest for their retirement and can be extremely useful for self-employed people.

The earlier you start to save, the more time your money will have to grow and the bigger your pension pot is likely to be. Taking a little time out to do some research and find the best SIPP for your needs can also be beneficial here.

Spend a Little on Branding and Marketing

Setting up a business is a financially difficult time for most people and it can be difficult to know how best to allocate the little money you have available.

One area I would recommend spending some money on if you can would be branding and marketing. Having a professional designer take care of your business logo and then using that logo on some professional looking business stationary or a well-designed website really could make the difference between business success and failure.

First impressions count, so you will want to get things right from the very start. Getting your branding right from the beginning can also save you a lot of time and money down the line, as it could help you to avoid an expensive and complex rebrand.

Getting it Right from Day One

Here we’ve mentioned just 3 important things that self-employed people should consider right from the start of their venture into self-employment. There are many other things that you need to consider before starting a business and also personality traits you need to develop, but the 3 tips we’ve discussed here should be high on your agenda.

One Response to 3 Things Self-Employed People Should Do Right from the Start!

  1. Abby A says:

    I think self-employed people often forget about is the “paying themselves” bit. This could come in pension plan or just leaving wiggle room for an emergency that can come up. This article is a great reminder to do both of those things.

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