June 2012 - Somerset Chamber of Commerce


June 2012 - Somerset Chamber of Commerce





June 2012

Chamber to launch Somerset’s

International Trading Post



International Trading


See page 3


Call to action for South

West Internet Traders

See page 7

Members News

TV Advert Debut

See page 10

SBA 2012

“While international trade is a

new area of work for the Somerset

Chamber, we recognise that we

have a responsibility to support

the growth of the Somerset

economy and see the merits in

supporting the county’s existing

and new exporters.” - Rupert Cox

See page 3 for full story

Scan this code with

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Business Awards


See page 13

Next Events

Bank of England


See page 15

Rupert’s Review

You can find the Somerset Chamber of Commerce

on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.

Business is Good for Somerset!

This review is being written

on the back of a very

successful Somerset in

Business Conference that

was held on 17 th May. More

will be written of the

content of the conference

elsewhere in this edition of

Chamber News, but I

wanted to recognise the direction of travel that this

annual event has made in the last 6 years.

Formally run by the County Council under the guidance

of the old Somerset Strategic Partnership, the annual

conference spent large sums of money on celebrity

speakers including the athlete Chris Akabussi and the

TV personality Phillipa Forrester to try to engender

interest in the event. It was a free event with little or no

business exhibition, no external sponsors, no practical

workshops and about 150 delegates – but you were

served a fried breakfast!.

Having just co-hosted the 6 th annual business

conference with our friends at Into Somerset it is

gratifying to report that the event attracts valuable

sponsors; the 250+ delegates are content to pay £16

+VAT to attend; we offer additional value through

afternoon workshops; we attract exhibitors who want to

network their activity to a wide audience and most

importantly we can maintain the quality of speakers,

most of whom have a Somerset or south west bias, or

are sponsored by our supporters.

issues of the day and challenges delegates to go back

to their businesses and consider ways of being even

more productive and profitable.

As a Chamber we now move our attention to the other

significant business event in the Somerset calendar

being the 2012 Somerset Business Awards. Having

been associated with these awards since their

inception in 2004, I am delighted to say that in the last

4 years under the Chamber’s stewardship it has grown

out of all proportion.

This year’s awards will be formally launched on 12 th

June at Lyngford House with the awards ceremony on

16 th November at the Somerset County Cricket Club.

Again the progress of this project takes some believing

from having to plead with businesses to enter in 2004,

to having over 200 entries in 2011 – what will 2012

have in store for us?

It is up to you – check out the website and enter now!


The British Chambers of

Commerce (BCC) have a

campaign entitled “Business is

Good for Britain” and I would

naturally argue therefore that

“Business is Good for

Somerset – let’s be proud of it

and promote our successes!

Chief Executive

I am proud that the Somerset Chamber of Commerce

caught hold of the Somerset in Business Conference at

a time when it could have faded away, and in so doing

the county can be equally proud that we have an

annual conference that addresses some of the key

Our Patrons

A big thank you to the Patrons of the Somerset Chamber of Commerce whose continued

support is vital to the growth of the Chamber.



International Trading Point to be launched

experience to share with firms

to make sure that the exporting

process is easier that it might

otherwise be”

The Somerset Chamber has announced a new initiative

for the county’s exporters as part of their enhanced

membership programme.

Responding to the Government’s plea to businesses to

increase their exporting activities – or export products

and services for the first time, the Chamber is

partnering with UK Trade & Investment and Into

Somerset to set up a network of those Somerset firms

with an interest in exporting.

The “International Trading Point” will be launched at

the Yeovil Innovation Centre on Thursday 5 th July at

4pm. The group will focus on subjects relating to

International Trading followed by business interaction

and networking and will meet quarterly and be hosted

at different venues across the county. The key objective

being to increase the profile of exporting by learning

from existing exporters and gaining knowledge on some

of the technical aspects of trading overseas such as

protecting intellectual property, understanding the

documentation process and most importantly getting


With professional advisers across 96 international

markets, UK Trade & Investment is the government

department that helps UK-based companies succeed in

the global economy and assists overseas companies in

bringing their high quality investment to the UK. Their

involvement is fundamental to the success of such an

initiative as they bring a wealth of knowledge and

expertise to exporting businesses and can assist in

opening up new markets for Somerset firms right

across the globe.

Graham White, International Trade Adviser for UKTI

covering Somerset said:

“I am delighted that UKTI are working in partnership

with the Somerset Chamber in raising the profile of

exporting in Somerset.

“International trade is a huge opportunity for

companies looking to expand their markets, but to do

this successfully, businesses are advised to use the

services of UKTI as we have the knowledge and

The Somerset Chamber is

accredited to a network of

chambers of commerce

worldwide that is synonymous

with international trade. In the

UK, the British Chambers of

Graham White

Commerce (BCC) network of

accredited Chambers supports and advises businesses

in all areas of international trade and exporting. The

BCC connections also offers links to British bi-lateral

and International Chambers of Commerce, providing UK

exporters with connections in new markets.

Rupert Cox, the CEO of the Somerset Chamber


“While international trade is a new area of work for the

Somerset Chamber, we recognise that we have a

responsibility to support the growth of the Somerset

economy and see the merits in supporting the county’s

existing and strong exporters.”

“We also know that by utilising the links that as a BCC

accredited Chamber we have, we can add even more

value to our members that export.”

“We look forward to working with UKTI and Into

Somerset in delivering the International Trading Point

and I can’t wait to lead a delegation of Somerset

businesses on a trade mission overseas – something

that has not been done for several years”

Into Somerset, the county’s inward investment agency,

brings the linkages between inward investment from

foreign investors, and those Somerset firms wishing to

trade abroad. With existing links with France, the USA

and China, Into Somerset’s connections could prove

vital in supporting Somerset’s exporters to find new


Any businesses wishing to express an interest in

getting involved with the International Trade Point

should e-mail Gerard Tucker on



Falling inflation will benefit businesses and consumers

(Commenting on the inflation figures for April, published May 22nd by the ONS)

David Kern, Chief Economist at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC),


“The CPI figures for April showed a decline in inflation of 0.5 percentage

points, which is welcome news for businesses and consumers. RPI inflation

only eased marginally by 0.1 percentage points, though it’s difficult to know at

this stage whether this is due to a statistical quirk, or more substantive

reasons. The fall in inflation will ease the pressures on businesses, and if the

downward trend continues it would hopefully enable an increase in consumer

spending later in the year.

“But inflation remains well above the official target of 2%, and the government

must look at ways of supporting businesses, while sticking to its plan to

reduce the deficit. The decline in inflation should not strengthen calls for an

increase in Quantitative Easing (QE) at present. However, a further increase in

QE might be necessary if the eurozone crisis deepens further and creates

difficulties for the banking system.

“The government and the MPC must look to ensure that the additional liquidity

created by previous increases in QE improves the flow of lending to viable

businesses. We urge the government to consider the creation of a business

bank, and the MPC must reconsider its reluctance to purchase private sector


BCC QES Survey

Just 3 minutes of your time will enable the BCC and the Somerset Chamber of

Commerce to lobby and represent to the Government on behalf of you and

your sector.

Got to the following link: www.britishchambers.org.uk/qes

Log on using the following details:

Chamber Password: economy

Chamber number: 35

Closing date: 11th June 2012


British Chamber of Commerce

Beecroft proposals would help firms hire

with confidence, says BCC

BCC's Director of Policy, Dr Adam

Marshall comments on the

Beecroft Report 21sy May

Commenting on the proposals

outlined in the Beecroft Report,

Dr Adam Marshall, Director of

Policy at the British Chambers

of Commerce (BCC), said:

“Adrian Beecroft is right to point

out that at a time when millions

Dr Adam Marshall

of people are unemployed,

ministers should be looking for ways to make it easier

and less costly to employ people, not the other way

around. Of course employment rights are important,

but should be weighed against opportunities for the

unemployed who are looking for work.

“Ministers should consider and progress all proposals

that would give businesses greater confidence to

hire - an outcome that would benefit companies,

individuals and the UK economy as a whole."

Commenting on the proposal for a new compensated

no-fault dismissal route:

“Employers tell us that hiring staff is expensive, so

dismissing someone is always a last resort. We are not

saying that businesses should be able to ‘fire at will’,

but the fear of not being able to dismiss a troublesome

employee prevents many businesses from recruiting.

A compensated no-fault dismissal route would be more

favourable financially for an employee than if they were

managed out of the business on performance grounds.

Both parties would also avoid the emotional distress,

uncertainty and reputational damage of an

employment tribunal. Given that this dismissal route

would be costly and would not provide the full

protection offered by compromise agreements, it would

only be used in extreme cases. The impact on

employment rights would be minimal but would boost

employer confidence and their inclination to take

on more staff.”

“Compensated no-fault dismissal should be introduced

alongside changes to make compromise agreements

easier for employers to use. This will help businesses

create jobs for the large number of talented,

hard-working people that are currently unemployed in

the UK.”

Commenting on flexible working and shared parental

leave proposals:

“Businesses are not against flexible working or shared

parental leave as concepts, but face real problems

when it comes to implementation. Most businesses

cannot accommodate unlimited flexible working and

are concerned by the potential damage to employee

relationships if they grant one request and have to turn

down a more worthy request later.”

“Shared parental leave introduces new and serious

complexity to the relationship between an employer

and member of staff. For the first time the

employer-employee relationship will be contingent on a

third party – the employee’s partner’s boss. Employers

should be able to focus on the day to day running of

their business and creating jobs and growth, rather

than managing the family matters of employees.”

Dr Adam Marshall will be guest speaker at our upcoming Business

Leaders Dinner later this month.

Join the Somerset Chamber of Commerce

Membership offers support and

advice to help you increase your

profits and also helps the Chamber

increase its influence.

Membership includes:

Effective business lobbying and

representation at local, regional and

national levels through accreditation to

the British Chambers of Commerce and

membership of the South West

Chambers of Commerce.

A range of FREE services provided

through the British Chambers of

Commerce. Access to nine exclusive

Chamber offers from national and

local Premier Providers.

Business Networking events with the

opportunity to network with up to 2,000

Chamber Members from across

Somerset and throughout the South


Informative seminars to share knowledge

and best practice including Meet-the-

Buyer events.

Initial FREE publicity for new Members in

Chamber News and on the website


For more details please call

01823 444924, email

manager@somerset-chamber.co.uk or

visit www.somerset-chamber.co.uk.


Business News

Into Somerset Ambassador Deborah

Meaden is backing a Government

campaign to tackle outdated perceptions

of manufacturing and seek out new,

innovative ideas it has been announced


Well known to the public for

her role on BBC’s Dragons’

Den, Deborah is joining

other influential business

leaders from across the UK

to lend her support to the

Make it in Great Britain

campaign, which aims to

challenge negative

perceptions of British


Drawing on her

long-established career in

industry, she will add value to the campaign by offering

up her time to take part in public campaign activities.

Deborah will also draw on her credentials as a business

leader and owner of British brand and manufacturer

Fox Brothers to help raise awareness of how dynamic

and interesting modern manufacturing is in the UK.

By joining Make it in Great Britain Deborah brings

expertise that will further strengthen efforts to attract

the talent and investment that the manufacturing

sector needs to thrive.

“I’m pleased to be signing up to support Make it in

Great Britain. What this campaign is doing is

demonstrating to the public how truly exciting and

innovative manufacturing is, and highlighting the range

of opportunities that exist, particularly for young


“As consumers we care more about the finished

product, but what we miss out on is the fascinating way

in which that product is created. More and more I find

myself coming away from visits to businesses and

laboratories across the country thinking how impressed

I am with manufacturing in this country.”

Andrew Smith of Numatic International (manufacturer

of the Henry vacuum Cleaner) commented; “The UK is

still the 6 th or 7 th largest manufacturing nation in the

world, the second behind the USA in aerospace, and

more than 50% of our foreign earnings still come from

manufacturing exports.”

“What is more, there is now a strong case, and lots of

current action, for ‘reshoring’ a lot of

the work that has gone to the far east in

recent years, so manufacturing is very

much going through a period of

renaissance. The many recent success

stories from the British motor industry

will perhaps begin to get across to the

nation just how good we are in many


Affiliate Town Chambers

Axbridge Chamber of Commerce

01934 733939


Baz Hamblin, baz@bristol.gs

Burnham-on-Sea Chamber of Commerce

01278 783276


Rhonda Mills, seabreezegal@btinternet.com

Bridgwater Chamber of Commerce

01278 228004


Steve Leahy, talk@bridgwaterchamber.org.uk

Frome Chamber of Commerce

07887 641469


Neil Howlett, kate@wessexchambers.org.uk

Ilminster Chamber of Commerce

01460 54364


Sarah Calhaem, sarah@theteetree.co.uk

Shepton Mallet & District Chamber

01749 344995


Ian Jarmaine, ian@swanatshepton.co.uk

Street Chamber of Commerce

01458 446114


Steve Martin, info@streetchamber.co.uk

Taunton Chamber of Commerce

01823 366832


Chris Mitchell, office@taunton-chamber.co.uk

Watchet Chamber of Commerce

01984 634 565


John Richards, chairman@wacet.co.uk

Wellington Chamber of Commerce

01823 661982


Terry Sanford, Terry.Sanford@wellingtonchamber.co.uk

Williton Chamber of Commerce

01984 632306


Ken Westall, contact@williton-chamber.org.uk

Wincanton Businesses Together

07729 117699


John Smith, john@link-2.co.uk

Yeovil Chamber of Commerce

01935 804999


James Richards secretary@yeovilchamber.org



Find out more about the benefits of

Affiliating to The Somerset Chamber.

Call 01823 444924 or email


Alternatively visit www.somerset-chamber.co.uk


HMRC—South West Internet traders

South West’s online sellers have one month to register for tax opportunity

People trading on the internet in the South West, who haven’t paid all the tax

they owe, have just one month left to take part in an opportunity offered by HM

Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to get their tax affairs in order on the best terms


Under the time-limited opportunity, known as the ‘e-Markets Disclosure Facility’, online marketplace traders who

come forward at any time between now and 14 June and pay the tax, duties and interest they owe can benefit from

lower penalties than those who wait for HMRC to catch up with them.

Once the e-Markets Disclosure Facility expires, HMRC will clamp down on those who have failed to declare earnings

and paid the tax that they owe.

The campaign is aimed at people using online marketplaces to buy and sell goods as a trade or a business and

who are not up to date with their taxes. Those who sell only a few items and who are not traders are unlikely to be

liable to pay tax on what they sell and are not being targeted by this campaign.

Marian Wilson, Head of HMRC Campaigns, said:

“Our aim is to make it easy for online marketplace traders to contact us and make a full disclosure of income,

thereby putting their tax affairs in order.

”I urge online sellers in the South West who think they owe tax on their income to get in touch and get their tax

affairs in order, simply and on the best possible terms.

“The information and intelligence we gather is from a wide range of sources and it allows us to target those who

should come forward as part of the e-Markets Disclosure Facility.

”If you owe tax and don't get in contact, do not assume that HMRC will not catch up with you.”

People who are unsure whether their e-marketplace activity could be seen as trading can visit the HMRC website

for further information: www.hmrc.gov.uk/campaigns/emarket.htm They can also watch a YouTube video for

advice: www.youtube.com/watch?v=uptdjVD2LgI

Once the 14 June deadline has passed, HMRC will investigate any online traders who have failed to respond to the

opportunity, using information pulled together from a wide range of data sources. Penalties of up to 100 per cent

of the tax owed, or even a criminal investigation could follow.

The benefit of the campaign is that those who make a full disclosure:

Will be offered a simple and straightforward way to put their tax affairs right

May not be charged a penalty at all, with most receiving a penalty of no more than 10 per cent of the tax they


Follow HMRC on Twitter @HMRCgovuk


New Members

May’s new members

Amicus Law

Richard Haste

01823 462500



Roz Hartley

01963 31541


Core Business Design

Richard Holt

01823 421739


Impey Showers Ltd

Shower Equipment Supplier

Nigel Lusby

0845 468 1627


JAE Telemarketing Services

Julie Evans

01935 315042


Mail Boxes Etc

Rod Salmine

01823 322263


Somerset’s Impey Showers launches revolutionary lifting

shower doors

Impey Showers, the UK’s leading wet room brand and pioneers of the level

access wet room based in Ilton, has revealed the latest technology in

showering for those with mobility issues.

The company’s innovative Impey Freedom air assisted doors incorporate a

unique air assisted spring mechanism that lifts the doors clear off the ground

at the press of a lever. This helps to prevent the floor seal dragging,

prolonging the life of the seal and making operation as easy as possible.

The door can be secured in position by gently pressing down on the handgrip

and the specially designed floor seal creates a completely watertight seal.

Other benefits of Impey Freedom doors are that they are durable and covered

by a lifetime guarantee; plus the spring mechanism is maintenance free.

Impey Showers’ technical manager, Shaun Hunt, said: “Opening and closing

conventional shower doors can be difficult as the rubber floor seal can drag

and wear badly. Unless the door is manually lifted clear of the floor some

users may experience difficulty, especially those in a wheelchair, the frail and

the elderly. We wanted to create a product that overcomes this obstacle to

provide easier showering for those with restricted mobility and we’re delighted

with the result.”

Impey Freedom represents the latest advance in

shower doors for the care market and is unique to

Impey Showers.

ORConsulting Ltd

Management Development Consultancy

Caroline Phillimore

01934 714120


Paragon Laundry Yeovil

Linda Wilson

0845 8732477


Straight Forward Success

Business Coach

Bill Burden

01271 378108


Sustainable Drainage Systems

Water Systems Manufacturer

Teresa Siossios

01934 751303


The Rifles Taunton Office

Michael Motum

01823 333434


Wateology Ltd

Waste Management Company

Suzanne Michael

01823 672900


Wraxall Vineyard

Jacky Brayton

01749 860331



Chamber Projects - Somerset in Business 2012

Innovation and collaboration were the

hot topics at this year’s Somerset in

Business Conference, which took place

on 17th May at the Westland’s

Conference & Leisure Centre in Yeovil.

Organised jointly by inward investment body Into

Somerset and the Somerset Chamber of

Commerce, the sixth annual Conference was

entitled, ‘Innovate to Succeed’ and attracted over

250 delegates who were eager to learn more

about the exceptional opportunities available for

innovation when businesses collaborate, both

within and outside the county.

Chair of Into Somerset, Cllr Anne Fraser MBE,

introduced the Conference by urging Somerset

businesses to remain alert to the changing and

challenging economic landscape and to continue

to think innovatively.

Conference delegates heard a range of viewpoints

from keynote speaker, Professor John Bessant

from Exeter University, who said, “It is not enough

to think innovation is just bright ideas. On its own,

a good idea won’t guarantee successful innovation.

Innovation is like a jigsaw puzzle, other parts of the

puzzle include sharing knowledge, which creates

the opportunity, and the customer. It is important

to listen to the customer, but often the market

doesn’t know what it wants – that’s where

innovation comes in! When you start pulling these

elements together, you begin to have the basis of

effective management of innovation.”

Rupert Cox CEO of the Somerset Chamber thanked

conference sponsors for their support. Smith &

Williamson Accountants, Foot Anstey Solicitors,

EDF Energy and the Open Innovation Initiative all

contributed as sponsors to Somerset’s premier

business event.

Roger Hall from the Open Innovation Initiative

commented “It was encouraging to see so many

businesses keen to explore how innovation could

help them to be more successful. We are proud to

have been associated with this conference and we

look forward to working with Somerset Chamber on

future innovation initiatives.”

Delegates were able to visit over 30 exhibition

stands, attend one of 5 free afternoon workshops

and were entertained by Robots from Plymouth

University and Jugglers.


Member News

Somerset Companies Debut TV Advert

Somerset Chamber member

Higos Insurance Services

became one of the first

insurance brokers in the UK

to have a non-animated TV advertising campaign

when their advertisement was broadcast on ITV1. The

premier of the advertisement appeared during

Coronation Street on 8th May.

Neil Wyatt, Marketing Manager of Higos Insurance

Services, said: “We are very excited to have delivered

our first television

advertising campaign in

ITV1’s West region. The

campaign has already

delivered positive results,

with a number of new enquires received and a

significant increase in traffic to our website and visitors

to our high street branch network, as well as a huge

impact on awareness of our brand.”

“As our branch network expands throughout the South

West, advertising on regional television becomes an

increasingly cost-effective channel for reaching

consumers. In a world where meerkats and rotund

opera singers are used to promote cheap insurance, we

saw our television campaign as an opportunity to

reinforce our brand values and communicate the

message that at Higos we ensure our clients are

properly insured.”

Local IT Company Still Continuing to Expand

this Year!

Blueloop are

pleased to


continued expansion with four new starters raising

employee numbers to 17 at their head office in North

Perrott, Somerset:-

Mark Boon – during the last six years Mark has worked

in various IT departments including AgustaWestland

providing first and second line support.

Tom Jenkins –After attending Cardiff University

completing a degree in Mobile, Web and Games

Design, Tom had been looking for a position in an IT

company to extend his skills and knowledge of

Operating Systems and programming Visual Basic


Jonathan Hanley – after attending Plymouth University

gaining a BA Hons in Business Administration.

Ben Parker – After completing his BA Hons Degree in

Modern History and Politics at Cardiff University, Ben

worked for a Media and Events Company and

Residential Lettings Business as an Administrator. He

has also worked for a large London Newspaper

shadowing the Whitehall Editor. Ben joins Blueloop

working for both the Operations and Sales & Marketing


Robin Barker, Financial Director, commented that “It is

encouraging to know, despite double dip recession,

that Blueloop continue to succeed and expand our

business. We are bucking the trend! We continue to

win substantial contracts and new customers. Only now

we are in the throws of a large deployment for a Global

Oil company.

The commercial was filmed in Higos’ Worle branch and

employee Anna Hodges had a starring role. The

advertisement aired over fifty times between 8 – 25

May and supports Higos’ thirteen offices within the ITV

West broadcast region.

A link to the advertisement can be found at


Fundamentally if you have gained a reputation for

delivering excellent service and your business model

ensures that costs are under control then you have

every chance of success.”

Blueloop provide IT service and consultancy to

businesses in the South West and throughout UK.



Member News

Calculate Your Tax in

Seconds with a New Albert

Goodman App

Chartered accountants

Albert Goodman, have

announced the launch

of a new app which is

available to anyone

with iPhones, iPads or

Android phones.

The app will help users

to instantly and

accurately calculate their tax

position when completing their tax

return or having received a

statement from HMRC.

The app includes functionality such

as numerous Tax Calculators for

business and personal use,

comprehensive UK tax tables,

helpful tax saving suggestions and

insightful tips and news updates.

Other useful features include an

RSS news update, a list of Albert

Goodman services, office locations

and contact details.

Albert Goodman’s Tax Partners;

Tracey Watts, Dominic Crilly and

Sheldon Cole

Tax Partner, Tracey Watts

commented, “Once a user has

downloaded this free app, they will

have lots of information available at

their fingertips and be able to

produce a ‘ready-reckoner’ of

their tax position.”

“Whilst Albert Goodman’s logo and

details appear on the app, it is not

an “aggressive” marketing tool – we

will not know who has downloaded

the app or for which tax calculations

it has been used.”

For an accurate tax calculation, or if

your tax position is complex, you

should seek specialist tax advice so

that your tax position can be

calculated and correctly and

effectively minimised.

The mobile app can be downloaded

directly from the app Store, on

iTunes, the Android Market, or by

visiting Albert Goodman’s website


Francis Clark shortlisted

twice in national tax awards

Leading South West chartered

accountants and business advisers

Francis Clark has been shortlisted in

two categories in the nationally

recognised LexisNexis Taxation

Awards 2012.

The firm is a previous winner of the

award in the category of Best

General Tax Practice and has now

been shortlisted in the Tax Practice

in a Regional Firm category with

partner John Endacott nominated

for the Tax Writer of the Year Award.

Andy Squires, tax partner in the

Taunton office said: “We are

delighted with this news. Being

shortlisted for a national Tax

Practice award of this significance is

a testimony to the all-round abilities

of our partners and staff, the

teamwork that supports every task

we tackle and the commitment we

have to delivering the very best

service to our clients.”

“Congratulations in particular go to

John Endacott for his nomination as

Tax Writer of the Year, which follows

the publication of his definitive book

on Furnished Holiday Lettings and a

year-long effort of providing thought

-provoking editorial to a range of

specialist media.”



Porter Dodson

Social Media in the Workplace

By Alan Sarhan, Employment Law Solicitor at Porter


The distinction between an individual’s

personal and working life, in terms of their

online activities, has become blurred.

Communication is no longer restricted to

face to face meetings and telephone


Increasingly, employees blog, tweet, email, access the

internet, and update their LinkedIn profile, and all from

their smart phones. Employers need to adapt to the

changes in the way we communicate and understand

some of the potential issues.

Areas to be aware of include: discrimination,

confidential information, recruitment, data protection,

damage to reputation and loss of productivity.

Imposing an outright ban or block on accessing social

media sites during work is one solution. It might mean

that employees are only entitled to use social media

outside of core working hours. This might be unpopular

but, of course, it is not very different from current rules

regarding personal telephone calls.

However, if personal calls are allowed and there is a

more relaxed approach to personal communication

then it is unlikely to be a popular solution, or indeed

practical given the current and increasing use of smart

phones. In addition, employers may also lose the

opportunity to exploit business advantages by allowing

employees to post positive aspects of their work online

or blog about successful business transactions.

A more effective way of ensuring that your business is

protected, is to make sure that employees understand

that what they do online is public, and that they are

expected to behave to the same high standards online

as they do in normal day to day life outside of the


To protect your business, you should ensure you have

some form of social media policy. It should provide

clear rules about what the parameters are in relation to

being online and deal with:


Equal opportunities, discrimination, bullying and


Processing of personal information and data


How contacts are made and what can be posted on

LinkedIn, twitter, YouTube and blogs etc;

Inclusion of a disclaimer stating that comments are

personal to the employee and not made on behalf of

the company; and

Recruitment decisions.

In addition, contracts of employment should include

clauses which place post termination restraints on

employees stopping them from dealing with or soliciting

customers and using confidential company information

after they leave.

Team Achievements

Lynne Colling and Sarah Stone

Porter Dodson is

delighted to

announce the

achievements of

Sarah Stone, who

recently qualified

as a Solicitor, and

Lynne Colling, who

qualified as a

Paralegal earlier

this month.

Sarah joined Porter Dodson’s Yeovil office in 2009 and

works in the Wills, Probate, Tax and Trusts department,

also specialising in probate-related conveyancing.

Lynne joined Porter Dodson’s Taunton office as a legal

secretary in 2006 and last year enrolled in the CLT’s

Specialist Paralegal in Civil Litigation course.

Lynne advises that “the course is very achievable if you

are motivated to study and are able to balance studies

with working full time. It took someone else to

encourage me to do the course, but I’m very proud of

my achievement and am grateful to the firm for their


For more information or advice on dealing with social

media at work, or any other employment issue, please

contact Porter Dodson’s Employment Team:

Adrian Poole – 01935 846802 –


Laura Roper – 01935 846741 –


Alan Sarhan – 01823 625840 –


Event Sponsors

Somerset Business Awards

The Somerset Business Awards are now

open for entry!

Now firmly established as a highlight of the Somerset

business calendar the Awards will once again celebrate

successful Somerset companies, and offer an excellent

opportunity for all business sectors to meet, be inspired

and showcase their achievements to their peers.

At a time when recognition for you and your company’s

achievements are more important than ever, the

Somerset Business Awards are on hand to recognise

and promote the county’s talented entrepreneurs. Every

year the number of high quality entrants grows as

companies recognise the value of winning a Somerset

Business Award. It is a mark of quality that brings

prestige, motivates colleagues, and potentially boosts


This year sees 14 Awards on offer, each celebrating

and recognising business success across Somerset,

giving businesses from every sector the opportunity to

promote themselves at the highest level.

Enter now: www.somersetbusinessawards.org.uk


Collaborative Innovation for Somerset

The Somerset Chamber of Commerce is

pleased to announce it is now a partner in

the Interreg IVB Open Innovation Initiative

with Plymouth University, recent sponsors

of the Somerset in Business Conference -

Innovate to Succeed. (see page 9).

The Open Innovation Initiative project aims to raise

innovation levels in organisations in Somerset. It will

do this through a series of activities including

workshops, cross sector initiatives, awareness events

and a mentoring programme. The Chamber will play a

key role in helping to manage the ‘champions

workshops’. Rupert Cox explains “To kick-start the

workshops the Project is currently looking to create

one or two groups of no more than a dozen people in

each, to work together over an extended period to

discuss ways in which Open Innovation can be

developed for Somerset.

Above: Roger Hall from the Open Innovation

Initiative at University of Plymouth addressing a

packed audience at the Somerset in Business

Conference 2012 — Innovate to Succeed.

“If you are interested in taking part please email Kim

McDonald on kimmcdonald@somerset-chamber.co.uk

to register your interest.“

This European project works across 5 countries and

9 partners. The UK group is led from Edinburgh, with

the South West group managed by the University of

Plymouth with Southwest One, Somerset County

Council and now the Somerset Chamber

of Commerce. The project has secured funds of

£500K for Somerset activities.

Roger Hall, from the Open Innovation team at

University of Plymouth says “We are proud to have

been associated with the Somerset in Business

Conference which enabled us to promote the project

to a wide range of Somerset businesses. We look

forward to working with Somerset Chamber on future

innovation initiatives. We are already working closely

with the Chamber on the Business Awards and supply

chain events”

For further information please contact Roger Hall

roger.hall@plymouth.ac.uk or John Carter



Contact the Chamber Call 01823 444924, email manager@somerset-chamber.co.uk or visit www.somerset-chamber.co.uk

Next Events

Bank of England Breakfast

Business to Business Dinner

Date: Wednesday 20th June

Time: 07.45

Venue: Somerset County Cricket Club

Cost: Members £15.00 Non-Members £20.00 (inc VAT)

Food Provided: Full English Breakfast, Tea and Coffee

Breakfast with the Bank of England

If you were asked ‘What one key issue is adversely

affecting the growth or success of your business?’ what

would you say?

Business uncertainty for the future?

Nobody is investing or making long term plans?

Lack of business confidence?

Do you feel you don’t have a voice when it comes to

discussing uncertainties that effect the financial

success of your business?

Delegates attending this event will hear the Bank of

England’s views about the UK’s economic performance

and prospects from the Bank’s Agent for the South


A full English breakfast will be served prior to breakfast

and there will be ample opportunities to network before,

during and after breakfast.

This event has kindly been sponsored by A C Mole &

Sons Chartered Accountants and delegates will also

hear from two of their partners on topical finance issues

directly having an impact on Somerset businesses at

this present time.

Date: Wednesday 4th July

Time: 19.00

Venue: Swan Hotel, Wells

Cost: Members £28.00 Non-Members £38.00 (inc VAT)

Food Provided: 3 Course meal and coffee

Join us for our 4th Business to Business

Dinner of 2012

Our fourth Business Dinner of 2012 sees us return to

The Swan Hotel in Wells, where we have joined together

with Wells Chamber of Commerce to bring you this


Previous dinners in the Mendips have seen us attract

around 60 people, and this one looks to be no


Kindly sponsored by Strode College, we expect to greet

people from a whole range of different companies from

across the county who are all eager to add names to

their contact lists.

Chamber members find huge benefits from attending

our Business Dinners, and our popular table plan

ensures that each guest will meet as many people as

possible over dinner.

It’s simple to book, go to www.somerset-chamber.co.uk

and book your place online.

Kindly Sponsored by

Kindly Sponsored by

For more information on any of our events, including sponsorship opportunities,

please email the Sue on events@somerset-chamber.co.uk or call 01823 444924


Somerset Chamber Events Calendar

For more information on our events, including sponsorship opportunities, please email Sue

on events@somerset-chamber.co.uk or call 01823 444924

Bank of England Breakfast Wednesday 20th June

What is the key issue adversely affecting the growth or success of your business?

Time: 07.45 Venue: Somerset County Cricket Ground Cost: Members £15.00 Non Members £20.00


Business Leaders’ Dinner Tuesday 26th June - By invitation

A dinner specifically for Somerset's larger employers

Time: 19.00 Venue: Castle Hotel, Taunton Cost: Members £45.00

Business to Business Dinner Wednesday 4th July

Come and join us for an evening of great networking. Inclusive of a 3 course meal

Time: 19.00 Venue: The Swan Hotel, Wells Cost: Members £28.00 Non-Members £38.00

Ladies Afternoon Tea Thursday 12th July


Smith & Williamson

Ylem Ltd

C2 Safety



This event, specifically for ladies will see speakers present on legalities that maybe effecting

your business.

Time: 14.00 Venue: The Monks Yard, Ilminster Cost: Members £15.00 Non Members £20.00

Business Breakfast with Numatic International Wednesday 15th August

Come and enjoy a bacon roll and a cup of coffee whilst hearing from Numatic about the

production of their world famous Henrys. (Followed by a 1 hour tour)

Time: 08.00 Venue: Numatic International, Chard Cost: Members £12.50 Non-Members £17.50


Business Leaders’ Dinner

The Somerset Chamber Business Leaders’ Dinner takes place on Tuesday 26 th June at The Castle Hotel in

Taunton. In the company of the Board of the Somerset Chamber, we will be joined by representatives from over

50 of the county’s largest employers.

The evening will provide opportunities for the Somerset Chamber to provide an update on current activities

around the county and also for guests to network with peers and make new contacts.

This year we are pleased to be joined by Guest Speaker, Dr Adam Marshall from the British Chambers of

Commerce. Adam was appointed Director of Policy and External Affairs at the BCC in July 2009.


We are delighted to be supported by Chamber members, C2 Safety Ltd, Smith & Williamson Ltd and Ylem Ltd.

This event will be an invitation only which have already been sent. If you haven’t received your invite and currently

employ over 50 members of staff, please do let us know.

Networking at the 2011

Business Leaders dinner

Rupert Cox, John Cullum &

Ian Gosden

Cllr. David Hall & Sheila


Tim Walker, Clarke Willmott

& Guest speaker John Cullum.

Call 01823 444924

Email events@somerset-chamber.co.uk

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