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National information, advice and guidance


Financial and Business Planning Support

The Early Years Business Zone (opens a new window) has been created by the National Day Nurseries Association (NDNA) (opens a new window) supported by the Department of Education. This is a free business toolkit for childcare providers  tools include business appraisal, financial management and staff costs calculators.

The Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years (PACEY) (opens a new window) have developed Business Smart (opens a new window) - a free online resource developed by childminders for childminders and produced in association with Lloyds Bank. Funding for the toolkit has been provided by a grant from the Department for Education.The tool kit is designed for both new childminders to gain business skills and established childminders to review their business sustainability.  This includes guidance on the business viability of offering Early Education Funding.

The Early Years Alliance (opens a new window) provides some free business resources to support providers, their Business and Management Zone (opens a new window) gives information on areas including a cost of delivery calculator, employing staff and marketing.

The Foundation Years website (opens a new window) has Business Planning resources (opens a new window) including information on developing a business plan.

The Out of School Alliance website (opens a new window) has free business and financial resources, with additional guidance on setting up an Out of Schools childcare provision.

Business support to deliver Early Years Entitlements

All guidance and resources provided by Hempsall’s/Childcare Works during their DfE awarded national support contracts have been gathered together on one website, this gives providers a host of case studies, information, slides from briefings, reports and research to use when looking at reviewing funding business models.   

As well as childcare sector specific information (opens a new window) the website has a great deal of general business advice and guidance (opens a new window) which can be accessed by business owners, managers and the self-employed. 

Employment Matters 

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) (opens a new window) provides impartial advice on employment matters to employers, employees and their representatives. Providers can find templates for employment contracts, letters, forms and checklists and also employment law updates and free online tools designed to help organisations check that they have the right policies in place.

ACAS also offers  ‘Employer Advice (opens a new window)’  a free telephone service offering free Employment Law advice for Business Owners and Employers.  

Voluntary Sector

Business advice offered above will benefit all sectors. For providers within the Voluntary Sector The Charity Commission (opens a new window)‚Äč also provides specific guidance on setting up and running a charity (opens a new window), including staffing, financial and management information.