What does StartUp Britain means for dentists and doctors?

StartUp Britain is a new scheme to provide support for UK businesses and, even at these early stages, dental and medical practices may find it useful to get involved.

Despite the name, the project aims to help new businesses and established companies alike, the moniker is perhaps more of a reflection of Britain’s economic recovery as a whole.

What is it?

The initiative, which was launched at Microsoft’s UK headquarters in London, is an online resource of business information and guidance, and includes links to widely known companies that are volunteering assistance, discounts and more.

The website www.startupbritain.co is divided into two main sections: the ‘starting’ link for new ventures, and the ‘growing’ link for existing practices. Each section contains information relevant to the viewer, as well as a list of company logos.

Every logo has its own pop-up message with details of the discounts or practical assistance the organisation is prepared to offer. O2, for example, has posted one month’s free line rental.

What’s in it for me?

If you take a look at the offers, most of them appear to be standard discounts that can be taken up from the company direct, and are not unique to the site. The exception is Microsoft, which has set up a webpage for StartUp Britain and, in addition to free software trials, is offering free training to the first 5,000 companies that apply.

Dates and times will be released in due course, so practices interested in finding out how to use technology to manage and improve their businesses are advised to keep checking in on the website. This offer is sure to be a popular one.

StartUp Britain is independent of the government and as such does not benefit from access to funding or direct grants, although Prime Minister David Cameron is a staunch supporter.

However, the site does make it very easy to locate a range of cost-saving opportunities across a variety of products and services. As the project gains momentum and more big businesses get involved, the advantages to practices will get even better.

[First published in Dentistry.co.uk June 2011.]

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