Support and advice for businesses

Information on local organisations that can offer support or advice for your business.

News and updates from the council 

Business Forum newsletter

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Providing goods and services to the film industry

If you are a local business interested in providing goods and services to the film industry as it develops in the borough, sign up to receive news and updates on future opportunities as these emerge, and visit the filmlbbd website for more information about the film sector developing in the borough.

Local organisations

There is a wealth of local organisations that can help you establish and develop your business in the borough.

Barking Enterprise Centre

Barking Enterprise Centre provides a vibrant business hub for organisations in and around the borough. It supports businesses of all sizes, linking people, ideas and opportunities to stimulate business growth. It also provides office and meeting space from its convenient Town Centre location.

Barking & Dagenham Chamber of Commerce

Barking and Dagenham Chamber of Commerce aims to promote trading and to enhance the economic success of local business. It offers a broad range of practical benefits to its members, including opportunities to promote and market products to a high-quality business audience.

Barking and Dagenham Community Volunteer Service (CVS)

Barking and Dagenham CVS is the umbrella organisation for local voluntary and community organisations, social enterprises and individuals who wish to engage in community activity. They provide training and one-to-one development support. Office space may also be available to rent.

Barking and Dagenham College

Barking and Dagenham College has a business engagement team working with over 300 businesses, including many household names, to deliver workforce development training and apprenticeships.

The college also runs:

  • The Pod, a creative zone for student entrepreneurs and local small businesses to help get ideas off the ground
  • Entrepreneurs’ Academy, which delivers projects for business clients by using the talents of their students

London Small Business Centre

The London Small Business Centre is one of the leading enterprise agencies in the capital providing funding, training and mentoring to aspiring and thriving entrepreneurs.

East London Business Place

East London Business Place is a support and supply-chain brokerage organisation which develops the business-competitiveness of small, medium and micro enterprises across London and the Thames Gateway, enabling them to bid successfully for new contracts and works opportunities.

Gov.UK, the government’s website, contains a wealth of information, advice and contacts for businesses and self-employed people.

Jobcentre Plus

Jobcentre Plus has a range of recruitment services to help you as an employer, including:

Job Shops

Our Job Shops helps businesses find the right staff quickly and efficiently. They can support you with every step of your recruitment process.

E Business Support

The council in partnership with Newham College has launched a new programme that will support 550 SMEs in the borough to capitalise on emerging digital and e-commerce technologies to drive their long-term growth over the next 2 years.

Called the Local London E-business Support Programme, it provides a menu of support and training to develop skills and knowledge of digital technology and applications across all sectors including: e-commerce; digital business tools, online marketing and trading, social media, establishing a strong online presence, e-tendering and crowdfunding, and cyber security and data protection.

Who is it for

SMEs (with under 250 employees) trading for over 6 months located in the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham.

What you can get

A dedicated business advisor and digital specialists, together with workshops and training, to help with the digital transformation of your business to:

  • free digital upskilling for your staff
  • free business support activities, including access to specialist workshops, one-to-one support, mentoring
  • increased sales and productivity for these businesses.
  • increase productivity and efficiency and save time
  • enhance your digital and online presence
  • maximise your use of social media
  • increase sales to grow your business
  • manage increased digital risk through improved security and back-up systems
  • improve your customer service and systems
  • improve internal and external communication
  • upskill your workforce

How to apply

The London Business Hub Wayfinder

Wayfinder logo

Helping small businesses connect with trusted expert advice and free support, sign up today.

There is no lack of business support services across London, however finding the right one can be tricky. For small business owners focusing on their day-to-day in a challenging economy, it can simply be too time consuming. 

We know businesses need a helping hand from experts who understand what support is readily available to them. Experts who can do all the hard work and connect them to impartial and excellent quality advice.  

This is why we have partnered with the Mayor’s London Business Hub to bring the Wayfinder scheme to businesses in Barking & Dagenham

How does the Wayfinder scheme work? 

Operating in six boroughs, the Wayfinders comprise of an experienced team from the London Business Hub. They can help match businesses with unbiased expert support on a range of issues. The process for businesses is simple:

  1. a business can register on the London Business Hub’s website, a Wayfinder will then set up an introductory call to discuss their needs, challenges, and goals
  2. the Wayfinder will conduct a full business assessment and suggest a variety of impartial expert providers who can offer tailored support. The business will then select (with guidance from their Wayfinder) the best fit for them
  1. once all agreed, the Wayfinder will introduce the business to the selected expert provider and handover to them. The Wayfinders will continue to be a helpful presence, checking in regularly with the business’ progress

What kind of support is available through the scheme? 

The expert providers offer independent support on a variety of topics listed below. They have been approved by the London Business Hub to ensure a high-quality service. Find out who’s signed up to the scheme.

  • business planning  
  • financial planning, loans and grants 
  • sales and marketing support  
  • employee hiring, retention and development  
  • technology adoption 
  • exporting  
  • and much more 

Is Wayfinder free for businesses? 

The Wayfinder scheme is free for businesses and most of the expert provider support is free. In some instances, paid elements will be available for businesses should they choose to opt for it, however this is not mandatory. 

How can a business sign up? 

Sign up or find out more via the London Business Hub’s website.

London Business Hub

In partnership with:

mayor of london logo
london business hub logo

Meet Barking & Dagenham’s Wayfinder, John Ogden

Barking & Dagenham: John Ogden

John is a highly qualified business advisor with real-world experience in leading companies as a former Chief Executive and Director. He has a strong track record in senior leadership, strategic planning and change management. 

He has worked with businesses of all sizes to solve complex problems, implement robust plans and remain agile to changing priorities. He also has a natural ability to create personal and effective partnerships quickly. 

His key skills include recruitment, team development, training and education, action planning, project management and managing operational complexity. 

London Business Hub