Online shopping has exploded in the UK, particularly in the last decade. The parcel industry it was already worth £6.9 billion a year in 2013, but by 2020 it had more than doubled to £14 billion.
And then there was the Covid-19 lockdown, during which the only way we could buy many items was to have them delivered.
Royal Mail is the UK’s largest courier company, having delivered items to Britons since the 16th century. However, where there is a thriving industry, there will be contenders for the crown. With Yodel, DHL, UPS and more joining the fray, consumers have more choices than ever.
Except, until recently, at the Post Office. The 11,500 Post Office branches across the country worked exclusively with Royal Mail until it was announced in early November that it would allow customers to use services from Range and P.P.D over the counter too.
This deal makes sense for the Post Office. By offering more services, it encourages more custom through its doors. And for courier companies, it puts their offering in front of new eyes.
Business collaboration is an incredibly powerful tool for entrepreneurs who want to grow and succeed. Here are several ways it can boost your business.
What does Business Partnership look like?
There are many ways that entrepreneurs can work together. Joint ventures and strategic partnerships involve businesses undertaking specific projects together, with all parties contributing resources to exploit an opportunity. This could be developing products or services together, combining marketing activity, or any other project where they work together for the benefit of all organizations.
Startup incubators and accelerators provide an environment in which entrepreneurs can share ideas and feedback, exchange advice and support. And some businesses join a consortium or alliance with their peers to address various industry-wide challenges.
Reasons for entrepreneurs to work together
Diversity of Experiences
Although the image of an entrepreneur is someone who builds their business from the ground up on their own, there are many advantages to finding someone to act as a sounding board.
It can be difficult to constantly think of new solutions to the challenges you face, which is why collaborating and networking with your peers can help. They can help you gain a new perspective that helps you solve your problem, and you can provide the same service to them.
A couple of fresh looks at a situation can be the spark you need to find the right path forward.
Whether you’re B2B or B2C, you’ll likely run into problems with customers tightening their budgets during uncertain times. If income is falling or decreasing, reducing expenses is necessary.
By collaborating with other businesses, sharing resources such as skills or technology, you can save efficiency. Other examples of the benefits of cooperation in this area include economies of scale, where two or more firms can access lower costs by, for example, purchasing in bulk together or sharing distribution channels.
Expand your Network
Collaborative work also connects you to your partner’s network and vice versa. Through collaboration, you’ll meet people and organizations you might not have connected with before.
This opens the door for future partnerships, access to potential clients and other such opportunities to grow your business. In addition, you can gain access to new markets through your partnership with another company.
One concern of business life is knowing that the company’s fortunes rest on your shoulders. Any business leader should have some level of risk appetite, but when there is no safety net, it can lead to caution that can slow growth.
When you share the weight of the risks you face, you can feel more confident in taking on the challenges, knowing that you have support and backing behind you and that you won’t have to start all over again.
When the market is turbulent, pivoting is essential, and that’s harder to do when you’re focused on a specific goal without any outside input. By having partners available for advice, you can work to be more responsive to industry changes and even improve your ability to anticipate them.
For many entrepreneurs, seeking collaboration may not be a natural impulse, but the advantages are obvious. Partnership brings a number of benefits that can help your business grow and succeed.