• The Open University

This course is part of the Start Your Own Business ExpertTrack

Start Your Own Business: Financial Viability for a New Venture

Learn to identify the financial implications of a new business idea and how its financial viability can be improved.

Female business owner wearing apron in zero waste stock store
  • Duration

    2 weeks
  • Weekly study

    5 hours
  • 100% online

    How it works
  • Included in an ExpertTrack

    Course 4 of 4
  • Get full ExpertTrack access

    $39/monthFind out more

Unlock your business ambition through effective financial planning

Many people starting a new business believe that the financial aspects rest solely with their accountant. However, it’s crucial that as a credible business owner, you can communicate with potential investors and stakeholders to show them you understand the financial implications of your decisions.

On this two-week course from The Open University, you’ll learn to evaluate the financial viability of your venture using tools to forecast cash flow, assess profitability, and understand a statement of financial position. You’ll discover how to judge the impact of changing aspects of your business idea and understand whether this may lead to success or not.

You’ll also learn the strategies for financial survival with the low levels of resources that most new ventures will have available.

Assess the financial viability of your business idea

How much profit you expect to make from your business will give you an indication as to whether it can provide you with a personal income. If your business will be loss making, as can often be the case, you’ll learn how to plan resources to see you through the lean period.

You’ll also understand why even profitable businesses can fail and how you can effectively plan so this doesn’t happen to you.

You’ll uncover the different legal formats you can choose for your venture, from sole traders and partnerships to limited companies and social enterprises. You’ll understand the implications of value added tax (VAT) and how to identify sources of funding, support and advice for new ventures.

By the end of the course, you’ll have the confidence and awareness to be sure you have put all the correct plans in place to operate your business legally and with the best chance of financial success.

What topics will you cover?

  • Assessing the financial viability of your venture
  • Pricing your product or service
  • Sales and revenue forecasting
  • Legal entities, their implications and intellectual property
  • Sources of funding and support

Prove you're job ready

Highlight the new, job-relevant skills you’ve gained and supplement existing qualifications with a hard-earned, industry-specific digital certificate – plus one for every course within your ExpertTrack.

  • Learn the latest in your chosen industry or subject.
  • Complete each course and pass assessments.
  • Receive certificates validated by the educating organisation.
  • Impress employers with learning outcomes you can add to your CV.
  • Make your career dreams a reality.

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Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Interpret and use financial planning tools so that you can communicate your ideas effectively to financiers
  • Identify what financiers look for and create a plan that corresponds
  • Improve different parts of your business plan to ensure they are consistent

Who is the course for?

Whether you plan to create a full-time venture or part time ‘side-hustle’ alongside a day job; you’re starting a brick-and-mortar business or an online venture; or you plan to utilise established platforms such as Etsy, Amazon and the like, this course will teach you how to get started.

It is suitable for learners at all levels, whether you haven’t ventured into self-employment and entrepreneurship before or have previously run a business and wish to refresh your skills for the current landscape.

Who will you learn with?

Haider is a Senior Lecturer in Marketing at the Open University and a visiting Professor at other Universities. He has consulted & taught globally and published in the Journal of Marketing Management.

Who developed the course?

The Open University

As the UK’s largest university, The Open University (OU) supports thousands of students to achieve their goals and ambitions via supported distance learning, helping to fit learning around professional and personal life commitments.

  • Established

  • Location

    Milton Keynes, UK
  • World ranking

    Top 510Source: Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2020

About this ExpertTrack

Gain the knowledge and practical skills to turn your small business ambitions into reality, with The Open University.

Start learning today - free 2-day trial

After your free trial you can:

  • Pay $39 per month to keep learning online
  • Have complete control over your subscription; you can cancel any time
  • Work at your own pace and set your own deadlines at every stage
  • Only pay while you’re learning; the subscription will cancel automatically when you finish
  • Complete online assessments to test your knowledge and prove your skills
  • Earn digital course certificates and a final award that you can share online, with potential employers, and your professional network
  • Keep access to the content of courses you complete even after your subscription ends

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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