How Coventry & Warwickshire Growth Hub Uses Beauhurst to Support Local Businesses
Coventry University Technology Park, Coventry, Warwickshire
The Coventry and Warwickshire Growth Hub is one of 38 Growth Hubs operating across the UK. It is a government-backed organisation, funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), Coventry City Council, Warwickshire County Council, and the five boroughs and districts of Warwickshire.
Launched in 2014, the Growth Hub works with local businesses in a number of ways, from providing business grants to bringing in specialists in their networks who can address specific skills or recruitment needs.
We recently spoke with Jon Bass, Finance Specialist at Coventry and Warwickshire Growth Hub, to find out how Beauhurst helps him and his team identify, research, and better support SMEs in their area.
How did you first come across Beauhurst?
We needed a tool to help us carry out due diligence on local businesses, including looking for warning signs that businesses are in distress or about to go under. We can’t go in blind and just hope that we’re looking after the right companies.
At the end of the day, we want to gather the best information we can about the organisations and people that we work with—and that’s only possible if you have a database where everything’s in the same place. Beauhurst is proving very useful to us in this regard. It gives us so much more than other data providers, and helps us stand out from the competition.
“I would say Beauhurst is a must-have. We may need to hire an extra team member if we didn’t have access to the platform.”
What are some of the main ways you’re using the platform?
We have five licence holders who all use Beauhurst in slightly different ways. Our data analyst, for instance, uses the platform to produce reports that are then distributed to the business support community across Coventry and Warwickshire, and to BEIS. Whereas, our account managers use it (usually on a daily basis) to find information on specific companies in our area, especially when preparing for conversations.
Personally, I use Beauhurst every hour of every day. I look at the filing information on company profiles to confirm that our CRM matches up with Companies House data, and to ensure that we have full financials for companies that we’re working with. I also use Beauhurst to proactively reach out to new companies that haven’t been in contact before, and to track businesses that are at risk of going under.
How does Beauhurst save you time?
I always have three tabs open on my browser: LinkedIn, Beauhurst, and our CRM. By using the Coventry and Warwickshire Growth Hub as a location criteria on Beauhurst, there’s no need to search through half a dozen different screens just to find out whether a business is relevant to us or not. I can even focus my search on businesses operating within a certain postcode.
The granularity of data on the Beauhurst platform is also quite astounding—whether it’s how many university spinouts are operating in our area, which companies have received Innovate UK grants, or a news article from six months ago about a company raising funds.
Without Beauhurst, I’d be looking for needles in haystacks…I’d be searching for weeks and creating spreadsheets like they’re going out of fashion. And that’s not a good use of my time. But with Beauhurst, it’s easy. All in all, Beauhurst must save me at least five hours a week.
How are you using our Company Collections tool?
I have Collections set up for each area in Coventry and Warwickshire, so that I can easily identify target companies for us to work with. And I can quickly narrow down these lists, for example by headcount, if I only want to look at companies with fewer than 250 employees.
I also have alerts set up for each of my Collections, including flagging any CVLs (creditors’ voluntary liquidations) from the previous week and businesses that have ceased trading or become inactive. It’s so useful having that information at my fingertips, particularly ahead of team meetings.
How would you describe Beauhurst to another Growth Hub considering a subscription?