While the majority of Outset clients are able to attend weekly workshops and participate in group activities, for some this is simply not possible. Fortunately, the introduction of Outset Online means the Outset programme is flexible enough to meet everyone’s needs regardless of their circumstances.
After finishing her maternity leave and discovering she couldn’t return to her previous employment on a part-time basis, Pip Hayler knew she needed to look at more flexible options that would fit in around her young family.
Keen to utilise her photography degree, Pip saw an opportunity to start her own photography business and, after consulting her local JobCentre Plus, approached Outset Cornwall to find out what business support might be available.
“For me, attending any of Outset’s group sessions would have been impossible, as I was still nursing my youngest child at the time,” says Pip. “When I spoke to an advisor at Outset Cornwall, they told me about Outset Online, which was the perfect alternative as it allowed me to work at my own pace and at times that suited me and my family.”
Aimed at those who are unable to access traditional face-to-face support, Outset Online is an e-learning suite that combines Outset’s Introduction to Enterprise and Business Start-Up sessions’ content with interactive exercises, quizzes and videos, guiding individuals through the process of starting a business step-by-step.
Pip says: “Outset Online covered all the areas I needed, plus some I hadn’t thought about. When I found something difficult to work on, I kept going, determined to stick with it and knew that I could always phone or email the Outset team for support.”
Having completed the programme and written a strong business plan, Pip has gone on to launch Pip Hayler Photography, offering a professional product and interior photography service to local small businesses and start-ups.
Pip now plans to develop her business and continue fitting it in around her family life, deliberately keeping it small while they are young and expanding as they grow older and start school.
“Even though I wanted to, I never had enough confidence to start my own business, and felt afraid of doing the wrong thing,“ says Pip. “Now thanks to Outset Online and the Outset Cornwall team, I’ve definitely got the knowledge, skills and confidence I needed.”