2021 is already halfway through but, for business owners, clearing away the detritus left by 2020 - and ensuring that the business is none the weaker for having gone through it - still represents a monumental task.

To that end, here are 5 ways any business owner can work to safeguard their business from ongoing and future issues.

1.         Check your commercial contracts protect you properly

For those without a robust understanding of commercial law, contracts can seem like something of a formality. A necessity, yes, but also something which, once signed and delivered, can be tucked away in the filing cabinet until further notice.

Still, as with many aspects of business ownership - particularly those that stray into legal territory - the passive approach rarely proves to be beneficial, and one of the best ways to ensure your business's current (and ongoing) security is to regularly review commercial contracts with the help of an experience commercial law firm.

This is why working with a local firm comes so highly recommended, as it enables you to keep that close, working relationship evergreen. Businesses based in Gloucestershire, for instance, will be able to keep a much closer eye on their commercial contracts if they work with solicitors in Cheltenham rather than, say, London or Leeds. 

2.         Update our Cyber Security practices

The risks of running a business online - in whatever capacity, whether you run a remote office or merely take sales or inquiries through a single-page website - can never be overstated.

The internet represents an incredibly changeable platform, with the only true constant being the fact that there will always be vulnerabilities - and, of course, that they will always be exploited by those with the means and motivation to do so.

And, given the cybersecurity risks associated with remote working, any business should be investing more time and resources than ever before into ensuring that their practices are up to code.

3.         Check in with your insurance policies

 During lockdown, and those periods of uncertainty in between, many of us made and experienced some significant changes to our businesses. Whether out of preservation or adaptation to new challenges, these changes could have had a more significant impact on your business's existing insurance policies.

As such, making you are still covered, and needn't make any amendments to your policies, is a vital piece of due diligence for any business owner in 2021.

4.         Be sure to maintain customer relationships

The past year has turned managing a business into even more of a juggling act than it ever was before, and even tending to the administrative side of things represents more than a full-time job.

Still, in spite of the fact that simply keeping the business going feels like an uphill battle at the moment, we mustn't lose sight of those aspects of the business that keep it growing-namely, our customers. By working to augment our marketing efforts, and to cultivate those relationships with our customers, we can feel confident that we are safeguarding our businesses against obscurity - or the risk of needing to begin from the ground up, in terms of marketing, once again. 

5.         Protect your business's future through good succession planning

Taking the time in 2021 to ensure the resilience and fortitude of your business entails more than reviewing those practices and procedures which serve to keep it going strong today, tomorrow, and next week. A buoyant business will be one that is prepared for the distant future, as well as those things which are, or may soon be, bearing down on you.