Develop your career

Our research shows that freelance and small businesses make up the majority of the creative industries, so this section is dedicated to helping you develop your business skills. Get advice from the industry on starting or growing a business, as well as guidance for being a successful freelancer. Learn more about finance, funding and legal issues.


Make sure you get paid on time by checking your standard invoice template

5 financial promises freelancers must make to themselves

A topic often forgotten by freelancers during the quiet months is the financial tidying up of your business. This is necessary to ensure all will run smoothly and economically once business starts to pick up. Darryl Howes suggests five promises you should make to yourself.


Financing your creative business

What can you do to make your business ready for investment? Sarah Thirtle from Creative United, which helps creative organisations to maximise their commercial potential, shares 5 steps for getting your business primed for finance.


The DONATE mobile fundraising platform is free for arts, crafts and heritage organisations to use.

Fundraising: why mobile matters

Paul Cutts, chief executive of the National Funding Scheme, explains why mobile matters and how to make the most of its fundraising potential.


Pitching your match-funding idea to a third party in the right way is key to your success.

How to approach match-funding

How can you use match-funding to reach your funding targets? Chris Buckingham, from crowdfunding research agency Minivation, explains how to approach third parties who may have an interest in your project succeeding.


Personal injury claims can run to many thousands of pounds, and take hours of legal argument to settle. (Image: Peter Shanks)

Insuring your public space

Few people set out to cause an accident, but they do happen. And if one happens on your premises, you could be considered responsible. Nick Green from PolicyBee explains how insurance can help.


Legally protect your designs

How can you legally protect your designs? Maxine Horn, CEO of intellectual property organisation Creative Barcode, gave her view at the New Designers Start Up Day, an event run by The Design Trust.


Umbrella Companies can help first-time freelancers without financial experience get on their feet quickly.

Using an umbrella company

If you're a freelancer, or making a move to independent working, dealing with your own taxes can be a hassle. Katherine Stannard gives advice on how umbrella companies work.


A good campaign needs to be carefully crafted before it can be put before a crowd.

The dark side of crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is often seen as a fun, fast and safe method of raising cash for a project or start-up. But the risks are still plentiful, and failure can be very public.


A good crowdfunding campaign should enable you to interact with your audience in a new way.

8 steps for crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is an increasingly popular way for creatives to find money and support for their projects. Chris Buckingham, a researcher and lecturer on crowdfunding, has advice on how to get started.


Rachael Watson, Development Manager at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead

Raising funds for the arts

Fundraising for the visual arts can be rewarding: supporting artists and making projects happen. But it also involves tight deadlines and difficult targets. Two fundraisers talk about their work.


By becoming a limited company, your freelance creative business could save money in several key areas.

Turn yourself into a company

Could you save money if your creative business became a company? If you’re working freelance, it’s useful to know the benefits of registering as a limited company.


The Fundraising Dashboard has been designed to encourage you to build on every area of your fundraising. Image © Anna Steinberg

How to manage your fundraising

Fundraising has become increasingly sophisticated. It has grown in breadth and depth. Donors are more discerning. How can you use the six pillars of fundraising to develop your funding strategy?


What is your ‘route to market?’ Are you using online channels, face-to-face or selling at trade fairs? (photo credit: Kevin Clifford)

Business support for creatives

You've set up your creative business, but how can you make it turn a profit? Creative Industry Finance, run by Arts Council England, is a new programme designed to help creative businesses to grow.


There is a huge untapped market for utilising arts venue spaces.

Get income from arts venues

Lucy Povey is an experienced events manager and venue consultant. She works with venues to help them reach their potential by maximising income from the hire of their event spaces.


Pricing – deciding how much to charge by looking at pricing and value from the customers' point of view.

How much should you charge?

Devising a pricing policy is one of the most important decisions creative entrepreneurs make about their businesses.


Alex Hammond is an antique restorer.

Know how to price your work

Every maker has bitter experience of pricing their work too high or too low. Pricing formulas range from the scientific, to the gut, to sheer guesswork. Put the creative stuff to one side and gather your receipts for this essential exercise.


Financial management means getting the right financial result by managing your income and expenditure.

Raising and managing money

Many creative entrepreneurs say finance is not their forte. Driven by a creative passion, they find financial management boring or confusing. Yet financial management is essential to any enterprise.


Professional indemnity insurance will cover you and your creative business. (image credit: Nima Badiey)

Protect your creative business

Professional indemnity insurance is there to protect you and your business if a client alleges you’ve been negligent. Insurance broker PolicyBee provides a guide to this essential business support.


Organisations benefit from talented individuals willing to give their services for an internship.

Internships: know the law

The range of UK internships has greatly increased in recent years and interns are now a regular feature in many industries. With claims that interns can be exploited, it's important to know the law.