Companies in Greater Birmingham and Solihull have received a boost this week with the launch of a new website that provides a single point of reference for business support and regulatory guidance.
‘Talk to Reg’ (www.talktoreg.co.uk), developed by the ‘Better Business for All (BBfA)’ initiative, will provide an online resource for firms to obtain expert advice and guidance on meeting legislation.
The portal features contact details and useful information for organisations responsible for food safety, health and safety, environmental protection, licensing, trading standards and fire safety.
It is part of a new approach that is being led by the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) and the Better Regulation Delivery Office (BRDO), which focuses on effective regulation being a catalyst for business growth.
“Some of the things we hear from companies are that ‘red tape is too complicated’, ‘there are too many people to talk to’, and ‘where do we go to cover everything’,” said Wade Lyn, Board Director of GBSLEP.
“The outcome of all this is wasted manpower, unnecessary costs and a feeling of confusion when it came to legislation.
“Talk to Reg, which has been developed by the team at Lichfield Council, is an important first step in putting this right. We’ve brought all of the main experts and organisations together in one single directory and all have been trained in making the relationship between regulators and firms more effective.”
Companies logging on to the website should be able to find the relevant contact they’re after within a few minutes or, in some instances, two clicks.
Users enter their postcode in the search engine to find the relevant experts serving that geographic area. Telephone, email addresses and website details are listed.
Furthermore, the categories have been designed so they match what a business might be looking to find; for example food safety inspections, building regulations, tax and employment. There’s even a section on business advice.
Wade said: “Talk to Reg has only been live for a few days, but we’ve already had over 100 visitors. As the message gets out there, I’d expect it to become the first place companies turn to for support with regulation, aided by the fact that it is also available on smart phones.
“The portal is available to any business in the GBSLEP area, which includes Birmingham, Bromsgrove, Cannock Chase, East Staffordshire, Lichfield, Redditch, Solihull, Tamworth and Wyre Forest.”
The Better Business for All project has been created to help the Government deliver on its priority of reducing the regulatory burden on business.
Primarily this will involve raising understanding and awareness and training the regulators so they can deliver support to firms that actually unlocks potential as opposed to putting barriers in the way of growth.
BBfA is currently being trailed with GBSLEP and the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership. If successful, it could be rolled-out across the other 37 LEPs in England.
For further information, visit www.talktoreg.co.uk or follow us on twitter @bbfa_gbslep.