50+ SKILLS EXCHANGE CLUB CALLS OUT FOR VOTES TO BAG A SHARE OF BAG CHARGE FUND – HORSHAM AND CRAWLEY!

As you may be aware, a couple of months ago we reached the final stage of the Tesco Bags of Help Initiative in the Redhill area. We are now pleased to announce we have also been shortlisted in Horsham and we would really appreciate your support! The 50+ Skills Exchange Club is bidding to bag a massive cash boost from the Tesco Bags of Help initiative!

Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch its community funding scheme, which sees grants of £4,000, £2,000 and £1,000 – all raised from the 5p bag levy – being awarded to local community projects.

Three groups in every Tesco region have been shortlisted to receive the cash award and shoppers are being invited to head along to Tesco stores to vote for who they think should take away the top grant. We’re ecstatic to announce that you will have the chance to vote for us in the following stores:

Crawley                                                                    RH10 1GY

Crawley Betts Way Express                         RH10 9UY

Crawley Haslet Avenue Express                RH10 1AH

Crawley Poundhill Express                           RH10 3BA

Downland Drive Crawley Express            RH11 8SW

Ifield Crawley Express                                     RH11 0PL

 

Horsham                                                                  RH12 3YU

Horsham Express                                               RH13 5QH

Horsham Silver Wok Express                      RH13 6EY

 
Voting is open in stores throughout July and August. Customers can cast their vote using a token given to them at the check-out in store each time they shop.

Lindsey Crompton, Head of Community at Tesco, said:

“We are absolutely delighted to open the voting for May and June. There are some fantastic projects on the shortlists and we can’t wait to see them come to life in hundreds of communities.”

By voting for us you can help to support and celebrate older people within our community and the priceless contribution they make! Let’s come together to make a real difference in the lives of over 50’s!

Help Us to Help Others – Our Story

The 50+ Skills Exchange Club is the social vision of Beta Futures. Its aims are to reduce the isolation and exclusion of older people in local communities by providing support, guidance and a hand of friendship through weekly Club meetings and additional social interaction.

We have been running the Club in Redhill and Crawley for a number of years but now we need your help to continue! The Club is valued by members and has had, and continues to have a positive impact on their lives. Here are some of the stories:

Harry:
Joined the Club due to feeling a bit lonely and rather isolated
As a result of his membership he has now made firm friends
Goes on day trips to Worthing and Brighton
Has an active social life including other clubs
His confidence has been restored
His health and well-being has improved

Heather:
Joined the Club for social reasons
After a visit from a CAB speaker, showed interest in joining the CAB team
Fellow members encouraged and helped her to have the confidence to apply
Now working as a volunteer admin assistant

Barney:
Joined the Club having been made redundant
Now in full time employment
He says: “If only more people knew of the importance of what the Club achieves and the marvellous work it produces and the help it gave me and others. You don’t always see on the outside of a person by heck you do on the inside”.

Contrary to popular belief, hitting the age of 50 does not mean that you are passed it, over the hill or that you no longer have a valuable contribution to make to society. That is why we set up the 50+ Skills Exchange Club, as an alternative to existing provision, which everyone is welcome to attend, whatever their motivation. Whether it is to socialise, to learn new skills, to meet new people or get into work/volunteering.

Our primary aim is to reduce the risk of isolation, loneliness and ill health.
Everyone either knows somebody or has a family member that could directly benefit from attending the Club. As we get older our confidence and self-esteem diminishes when events such as: bereavement, redundancy, retirement, empty nest syndrome, declining health and other life changes take hold. This can have a negative impact on mental health and well-being, and you begin to question what it’s all about.

There are times in life when we all feel vulnerable. The older you get the harder it is to ask for help. Please help us to help others like Harry, Heather and Barney, by donating whatever you can on our just-giving page:

https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/50plusclub

We would like to thank you in advance for your support!

 

50+ Skills Exchange Club Calls Out for Votes to Bag a Share of Bag Charge Fund – REDHILL

The 50+ Skills Exchange Club is bidding to bag a massive cash boost from the Tesco Bags of Help initiative!

Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch its community funding scheme, which sees grants of £4,000, £2,000 and £1,000 – all raised from the 5p bag levy – being awarded to local community projects.

Three groups in every Tesco region have been shortlisted to receive the cash award and shoppers are being invited to head along to Tesco stores to vote for who they think should take away the top grant. We’re ecstatic to announce that you will have the chance to vote for us in the following stores:

 

CATHERHAM                      CR3 5QX

EDENBRIDGE EXP             TN8 5AD

REDHILL SURREY EXP    RH1 2NH

 

Voting is open in stores throughout May and June. Customers can cast their vote using a token given to them at the check-out in store each time they shop.

Lindsey Crompton, Head of Community at Tesco, said:

“We are absolutely delighted to open the voting for May and June. There are some fantastic projects on the shortlists and we can’t wait to see them come to life in hundreds of communities.”

By voting for us you can help to support and celebrate older people within our community and the priceless contribution they make! Let’s come together to make a real difference in the lives of over 50’s!

 

Improve Your Chances of Business Success!


Running a business is undoubtedly tough work. Running a successful business, as you can imagine requires even more blood, sweat and tears. While how we measure success varies on a number of factors, below we give you some pointers to improve your chances of success, no matter what your business or circumstances.

  1. Be flexible

Running a business requires copious amounts of planning, and every entrepreneur envisions what their path to success will look like. However, no matter how much you plan, it is always best to expect the unexpected. Unfortunately, the universe isn’t so kind as to not bestow us with some unwarranted surprises from time to time. How well you adapt to and accept change will be an important part of your success story. Being flexible towards whatever obstacles come in your path, and simply taking them into your stride with a little positivity, rather than packing it all in because things didn’t quite turn out as expected will surely lead you to triumph.

  1. The customer is always right

An age-old cliché, we know. But it carries heavy truth with it. Going back to the first point, demands constantly change amongst consumers and it is crucial to be flexible towards them. Though you may have a vision of the kind of image and service your business is to provide, if it’s not capturing your audience, it’s time to listen to their wants and make changes.

Even if you think you know better – it is your business after all, without customers you will have no business at all. So, take the initiative to do whatever it is that satisfies your customers and you will most certainly maximise your success!

  1. Know your competitors

In order to stand out you have to know who you’re competing against. Without studying your competition you won’t know how you will compare in the market and that can be a major pitfall.

Network as much you can with like businesses. This is not only a great way to make yourself known, but also to gain insight and ideas, all the while getting a chance to mingle with your competition and see first-hand what you’re up against, and stay one step ahead of the emerging trends.

  1. Be visible

There’s no escaping the ever-present internet or social media. Use this to your advantage as much as you can. ‘There’s no such thing as bad publicity’ to throw in another cliché. Don’t be afraid to make yourself known, get your opinions out there in blogs, tweet other businesses, and be present on other platform such as Facebook and LinkedIn! The more you are known, the more chances of success you have!

Following these few simple steps will make a huge impact in how far your business goes! If you want to know more ways on how to grow your business give us a call on 01293 817227

 

 

Fuller Working Lives – Why We Need Older Workers!

Beta Futures were honoured to be in Birmingham earlier this month, alongside other organisations such as Aviva, HS2, Toyota and Eversheds to attend the Fuller Working Lives strategy launch announced by the Minister of State for Employment, Damian Hinds.

The strategy is tackling the challenges of an ageing population and in particular how we incorporate that population into the workforce
We have more people aged 50 and over in employment than ever before, but they’re still an underappreciated and underrepresented group. To add to that, they are exiting the labour market earlier than they would like. In fact, the average age of leaving the labour market is not keeping pace with the increases in life expectancy.

Employers are in the driving seat when removing the barriers for older workers, however, it’s not just employers we need to reach out to. Keeping older people in work is beneficial across all of society. We have a bias, bordering on an unhealthy obsession with youth, from the magazines to the workplace, and in a rapidly evolving world we are always looking to bring in the new and discard the old. As far as technology and innovations go – fair enough. But, if we apply that same rule to older workers we are doing everyone a disservice, and yes that includes the younger generation. Why? Because a multi-generational workforce has benefits for everyone. Most importantly it contributes to economic growth which in turn means more job opportunities – for younger workers too!

Anyone that’s sat with an older parent, grandparent, relative, friend or even had a chat at the bus stop with the quirky older gentleman will know that there’s nothing quite comparable to the wisdom of older people. The current older generation are a group of people that will eventually become extinct – who have grown up without technology and are the only generation to witness how rapidly the world has changed in the last couple of decades. That experience alone desperately needs to be savoured in the workplace to influence business and shape the economy for the better. The different ideas, perspectives and knowledge older workers have is something younger employees can also draw on to improve their own skills and is invaluable experience that can’t be bought or learned anywhere else.

We all age, it’s probably the only certain thing in life, and by the looks of it we’re going to be living longer. Therefore, embedding the worth of older workers into society’s values now will ensure generations to come will also reap the benefits. As the way we live changes, so will have to the way we work in order to ensure we stay happy and healthy – staying in work longer makes a significant difference to income as well as mental and physical wellbeing. That makes it not only beneficial for an individual to stay in work, but reduces the strain on our health and benefit services.

Only good can come from retraining and retaining older workers. Its high-time we as employers and young employees acknowledge that and in a world obsessed with innovation and adaption, we adapt to our changing demographics first and foremost to keep our economy thriving and avoid loss of labour, while squeezing as much wisdom from our older generation – the last of its kind, while we still can.

How to write the perfect CV

We’ve all been sat down with the task of having to write our CV at one point or another. A task, that when it comes around to it, is a lot more difficult than it seems. Your CV after all isn’t just a list of your achievements or experiences, but it’s a two-page opportunity to sell yourself to potential employers.

“Sell myself?!” you ask. Well, yes. At the end of the day you are both an asset and investment to the organisation that hires you, and they ought to rest assured that you will be money well-spent.

“But how do I sell myself?” you say. Fret not, we’ve got some top tips on how to take your CV from one that might be skimmed and binned to one that will make the cut and land you the job. Now, while the ‘perfect’ CV certainly is relative, following these pointers will still boost it up a notch and increase your chances of being hired for that dream job!

 

  1. Make it compelling

Your CV should leave your interviewer wanting to know more. Think of the sort of questions you would want the interviewer to ask and make sure your CV highlights the points that would probe them to ask more.

  1. Be concise

The ideal CV should be no more than two pages long, with minimal sub sections. Make sure you focus on the primary points you want to get across. Anything overly wordy or lengthy won’t be read, even if it’s packed with impressive information! Get rid of your oldest work experiences or ones that don’t add much oomph to your CV if you’ve been employed at quite a few places

  1. Tailor it to each employer

Tedious, I know. A good way around it is to keep alternative paragraphs and bullet points that you can swap in and out depending on the need. All in all, it shouldn’t take too long as the bulk of information will remain the same, however it could make or break your chances of getting the job!

  1. Give other sources of information

If you’ve made a big impact outside of work – doing projects, volunteer work, clubs etc. make sure to include this. The quirkier the things the better! If you have a blog or website include links to this. The more interested the employer gets in you, the better! Anything extracurricular that makes you stand out is essential.

  1. Sell yourself!

Emphasise your results. Your choice of words is key. Instead of just mentioning, for example, that you ran a company’s social media platforms, say you increased the Twitter following by so and so percent, Facebook by so, and so on. Wherever you’ve done a job that showed results include this! Don’t be shy to boast – this is what will sell you!

Having a stellar CV will catapult you into the realm of ideal candidate. Of course, make your CV as personal as possible but following these general tips will guarantee to improve your chances of catching the employers eye!

If you need help writing a CV contact us on 01293 817227 and together with you, we can tailor the perfect one!

 

 

What’s in Store for 2017…?

Like everyone else we are super excited for the New Year. With each new year comes the opportunity for growth and prosperity, for both individuals and businesses!

Here at Beta Futures we are particularly looking forward to 2017 as we’ve got lots of exciting stuff lined up. Here’s just a few of the things to keep an eye out for:

  1. Apprenticeship Levy

The apprenticeship levy will be coming into effect as of April 2017, and this is exciting news for Beta Futures. We will be working with businesses to ensure they are making the most of the new standards.
We are, in fact, already working with employers to create new, exciting apprenticeship programmes. We tailor our services to exactly what employers want! First, we will ensure your business is taking the correct steps to be eligible for government funding. For employers in scope for payment of The Levy we can help maximise your return on the investment. For smaller organisations, we will consult with you on developing the skills your organisation needs and help you find the right apprentices and training providers!

 

  1. Bird FD

Bird FD is a new enterprise formed from the partnership of two acclaimed training providers; Phoneix4Training LLP & ourselves – Beta Futures. Bird Freelance Directory will be the UK’s leading network and portfolio site for skilled and vetted freelancers.

The enterprise will enable you to browse multiple, qualified freelancers based on accreditation, qualifications and skills, all of which will be checked and verified to reduce your recruitment process timings. With Bird, you can be safe in the knowledge that the freelancers you hire are qualified and reputable.
Freelancers will also have the opportunity to access good quality work as often as they like from trustworthy employers and become known in their own field. From the work they find through Bird FD they will be able to build a unique range of skills and experiences, establish an extensive list of contacts and build up a wide-ranging CV.

 

  1. New Website

A new website for Beta Futures is underway! The new site will be more user friendly, visually appealing and allow you to find the information you are looking for swiftly and with ease. The new homepage will be split into ‘Beta Futures Community’ and ‘Beta Futures Business’, allowing our visitors to go directly to the section they require rather than faffing around through links! If you are a user of our current website and would like to leave any suggestions or feedback for the new site, please email us at marketing@betafutures.com!

 

  1. Expansion of 50+ Club to Isle of Wight

One of our most important aims in regards to the 50+ Skills Exchange Club is to expand into every region across the UK. The overwhelmingly positive feedback we receive from our current members in the Crawley, Redhill and Horsham Club is evidence that there is a need for this service to be available nationwide. An exciting opportunity has arisen to do just that, with a request from the Isle of Wight to franchise the Club to the tiny island off the Hampshire coast! 2017 will bring about an exciting period of growth and improvement for the Club!

We wish you all a happy, joyful, safe and sound festive period, however you may be celebrating! And we look forward to working with you in 2017!

Feel free to call us anytime on 01293 817227 with any queries.

New Opportunities Create a Beta Future

The government are introducing changes to the way in which Apprenticeships are funded from April 2017.  These changes most certainly can affect and benefit your business and we can show you how.

It is statistically proven that most employers are reluctant to participate regularly in training and workforce development.

From 1st May 2017, you can grasp the opportunities that the changes to Apprenticeships present.
So, what are the changes?

  1. The Apprenticeship Levy comes into force
  2. Apprenticeships have no upper age limit
  3. Apprenticeships are available at all levels from entry level to degree level
  4. If you are a non-levy paying employer (criteria apply) government will pay 90% of the costs (up to a cap).
  5. If you are a levy-paying employer 100% of the cost of delivery can be claimed back.

Securing your organisation’s stability and growth through the development of your people has always made perfect economic sense.  To be given the opportunity to achieve this at 10% of the cost is surely too good an opportunity to miss.

There are only 72 working days left until these changes are introduced.  Beta Futures can help explore all your options; simplify the messages and help put the strategies and processes in place that will maximise the ROI that comes with investing in your greatest asset – your people.

Click here to sign up for your FREE consultation on how this can affect/benefit YOU!

Business – The Tricky Side!

Tricky yet rewarding stuff, starting and running your own business can be. A quick google search will leave you with endless tips and how to’s on the matter, but we want to know the ugly side of running a business too – straight from the horse’s mouth! Marie Harris, managing director of Beta Futures, who help start-ups is going to answer the questions we’re all really itching to ask:

 

  1. What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in starting and running your own business?

The biggest challenge was being able to articulate the mission and to develop a brand; we knew what we wanted to achieve but the challenge was how to get it out there.

 

  1. How did you overcome it?

We definitely made a few mistakes when we first went out to the marketplace, but having the right contacts is key I would say – we were fortunate to have a critical friend who was able to get to the nub of what we were about and help us to stop dressing it up and justifying ourselves.
Secondly, firm belief in what you are doing is crucial to overcoming any challenges. We provide a service which is not a tangible product and it is difficult to take the concept out there – people need to buy into you and trust you, so unless you believe in your cause they won’t either.

 

  1. What are your coping strategies on the ‘bad days’?

I suppose to go back to basics, and I have to remind myself from time to time why we actually started this business and reflect on how far we’ve moved from my kitchen table to where we are now. You just need to give yourself a pat on the back every now and then, because it really is a roller coaster ride.

 

  1. Have there been times when you’ve wanted to pack it all in and call it a day?

Yeah, absolutely

 

  1. What is it that keeps you going in the end?

Belief in the principle of what it is that we’re actually trying to achieve, and positive feedback from customers. And since we are a social enterprise we get feedback from the members of the community also, and knowing that they are benefiting from what we are doing – something as simple as that, makes what we are doing worthwhile!

 

So, there you have it! An honest insight into the ups and downs of running your own business. Following your dreams isn’t easy work – but as they say, nothing worth having ever is! Want to discuss the possibility of having your passions and ideas formed into reality? Give us a call on 01293 817227 and let’s talk business!

Enabling Your Business – Theory into Practice

Beta Futures is proud to announce that it has teamed up with NatWest to bring you a free event at the end of September which will focus on things to consider when starting or growing your business.

Small businesses account for over 99% of all private sector businesses in the UK[1]. After all, who wouldn’t want to be their own boss and steer their career in the direction they choose, whilst managing their work-life balance as they please? However, we understand that running your own business isn’t as easy as it may seem. A good idea paired with a bit of talent, a pinch of shrewdness and a lot of passion will propel you in the right direction. However, whether you are starting or growing your business the nitty-gritty of it can be overlooked, which can make all the difference in making a good business into an excellent, lucrative and sustainable one.

Business planning, financing, budgeting, marketing, customer care – our experts Chris and Mike are here to give their tips and advice on it all whatever stage your business may be at. Enhance your knowledge and skills, network with like-minded people and give your business a much needed favour with ‘Enabling your Business – Theory into Practice’.

Your success is our aim and we are looking forward to seeing you all soon!

 

Date and Time: 27th September 2016 5.00pm to 7pm

Address: Basepoint, Metcalf Way, Crawley, RH11 7XX

RSVP by 23rd September 2016
Christine.lyle@natwest.com 07788347095
mike@betafutures.com 01293 817229

Book by Eventbrite:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/enabling-your-business-theory-into-practice-tickets-26699368530

 

[1] Figures are for 2015 from fsb.org.uk