5.1 Introducing the Step-by-Step

We have introduced three pathways for applicants to provide the right type of support and funding depending on your stage of development.

These pathways have been based on our Step-by-Step tool which has been designed to reflect the development journey for community businesses working towards launching a community share offer.

The Step-by-Step is an online tool that enables you to work towards launching a community share offer. It is designed to help anyone considering raising community shares at any stage of development, from those investigating the idea for the very first time, to those who are on the verge of issuing an offer.

This tool is designed in three steps:

  • Step 1: Are community shares the right option? An initial exercise to determine whether community shares are the right option for your group based on your circumstances and plans regarding your business idea, your organisation and your community.
  • Step 2: Getting Ready: If the initial exercise identifies that community shares are right for you, then this phase guides you through the key tasks associated with the business plan, governance and community engagement, to get ready for launching a share offer. 

  • Step 3: Preparing the Offer: Once you have completed all these key tasks, this final phase is an opportunity for you to make sure you have considered everything ahead of launching your share offer. Particularly if you are applying for the Community Shares Standard Mark to demonstrate that your offer meets good practice.

The Step-by-Step tool asks you a series of questions about your plans, specifically focusing on your business idea, your governance arrangements and your work engaging your community.

Once you’ve completed all the questions for each phase, the Step-by-Step tool will produce a report for you, with key recommendations on how to proceed towards the next stage and soon enough launching your community share offer.

If you have any questions on the content included within the guidance, please contact the team.