Do you know that there’s an absolute wealth of information out there that could play a key part in the survival of businesses across the UK? Perhaps even your business. What is this information we hear you ask? Well it’s information on other businesses (in most cases limited companies - the most popular business structure in the UK) and it’s provided through services such as a company credit check.
In this post we’re going to look at all of the services that are on offer through company credit check providers such as Company Search MadeSimple, and ultimately how these services can help you make smart, informed and fully researched business decisions - business decisions that could make all the difference when it comes to ensuring that you or your business remain financially sound. We hope you find it useful. First, let’s answer a vital question
What is a company credit check?
A company credit check is the act of purchasing (or completing a free company check) on a company. The result of this check is a company credit report that then gives you a plethora of information on the company that you completed the check on - including company accounts information.
What information can I expect to receive in a company credit check?
The exact information you find will differ depending on the company search provider that you’re using and whether you’re opting for a paid check or a free company credit check. Especially when it comes to the company accounts information. However, you can expect to receive some of the following information:
● Company name
● Previous name/s
● Company number
● Company type
● Standard industry classification code
● Incorporation date
● Website address
● Confirmation statement made up to date
● Annual accounts made up to date
● Registered address
● Trading address
● Credit risk overview
● Company accounts information
● Director information
● Shareholder/share information
● All documents that the company has filed
● Group structure (other businesses the business has an owner/ownership relationship with)
● Timeline overview
Where does this information come from?
The information is sourced from a number of places, including Companies House (sometimes known as a Company House search) and credit rating agencies.
How can a company credit check protect your business?
If analyzed efficiently the information found after completing a company check - including the company accounts information - can help you decide who you do, and do not do business with. This is particularly significant if:
1. You’re considering making a large order with a company and so about to part with a large amount of money. You need to know that the company can fulfill the order.
2. You’re a business owner and about to accept a large order. You need to know whether to take payment upfront or give credit.
3. You’re a business owner and considering partnering with another business. Will this partnership enhance your reputation, or damage it?
So that’s how a company credit check and the accompanying company accounts information can help you ‘save your business’s skin’ - but is there another tool out there that can help you? Let’s take a look.
Complete a company director search
It’s not all about looking into companies. Sometimes looking into the people behind the companies, via a company director check - can be as valuable to you and your business. Finding company director details is just as simple, if not even easier, as finding company information. After all, limited company director information is on the Companies House register and so publically available.
A company director search will typically provide you with the following director information …
● Director’s full name (including title)
● Date of birth
● Director ID number
● Address (normally the service address, this being the official address for company directors)
● Number of director appointments currently being held
● Number of secretary appointments currently being held
● Number of previous director appointments held
● Number of previous secretary appointments held
● The names of all companies that the director is or was a director of
● The names of all companies that the director is or was a secretary of
● Period of time since their first appointment
● Date appointed and resigned (if applicable)
● The company status for each company (active, dormant or dissolved)
On top of all this information, the majority of company search providers - such as Company Search MadeSimple - allow you move swiftly from a director search UK over to a company credit report. This gives you a seamless opportunity to trace a limited company director and the performance of the companies that they’re involved with (or were previously involved with) - either as a director or a secretary.
How can a company director search protect your business?
In much the same way that a company credit report allows you to assess a company and the likelihood of them being a sound business associate, a company director search allows you to assess the people behind the companies.
1. You’re considering making a large order with a company and so about to part with a large amount of money - you need to know that the people you’re dealing with are legitimate.
2. You’re a business owner and about to accept a large order. You need to know whether the person you’re about to take payment from isn’t involved in a company that’s in financial trouble.
3. You’re a business owner and looking into partnering with another business. Are the directors of this company involved in any companies that could potentially damage your company?
4. You’re considering employing someone. But are they involved in any other businesses - businesses that you don’t want to be involved with?
But don’t forget … if you’re a business owner, company credit checks and company director searches can be turned against you
If you have you own limited company or are simply acting as a director in a company, other people can purchase company credit reports and director reports on you.
Therefore you need to be aware of how you look to other people and businesses. Before heading into any business meeting prepare thoroughly by knowing how all your company and director information looks. If there are areas that could raise concerns, decide how you’re going to respond if they are brought up.
Company credit checks and director searches are a valuable tool in doing smart business, but as we touched on above - you just need to remember that they work both ways. If you can do a search on someone and their company, they can do a search on you and your company (if you are indeed a business owner). We hope you have found this post helpful.