Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Professional Womens Networking Christmas Special

We attended the Professional Womens Networking Christmas Special yesterday hosted by PKF Francis Clark at Wyevale Garden Centre Salisbury.

Our plants expert, Nicky, demonstrated how to prepare a layered pot which will grow and bloom through spring into summer. Then, in the style of The Generation Game, we all had a go at creating our own pots.

With everyone engaged in their creations, chat came easily revealing ladies preparing to enter or re-engage with the world of entrepreneurship. Their ideas and plans are very reflective of Mum's creating work life balance solutions to support family priorities and satisfy natural entrepreneurial energies.

Like their pots of plants, we look forward to watching and supporting them as they blossom and grow.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Lights on at The Factory – supporting emerging start-ups

Domestic Angels were invited to take part in this ground-breaking event targeting emerging start-up businesses and budding entrepreneurs. Several local businesses determined to support and service the audience had exhibition stands warmly welcoming the delegates, openly sharing knowledge, business experience and plenty of encouragement.

The event was peppered with seminars to enrich the delegate day including ‘From clueless to entrepreneur’ delivered by the Domestic Angels leadership team. We wanted to convey to the next generation of business owners that they really can take an idea with a blank piece of paper and create a fully-fledged company of their own. It was a privilege to meet and interact with our seminar delegates who courageously shared their business visions.

Delegate Sue contacted us post-event to say "The way you all spoke was testament to the brilliant working relationship you have as people with different skills and all working together for the good of the clients and the business. A truly novel way to talk that could only be done by a genuine team" We hope to stay in touch with emerging business delegates and watch them blossom.

As a business, we recognise that we have been fortuitous in our development and success which is directly attributable to a lot of hard work but also to the talents and knowledge inside and outside of the business which have directly and indirectly impacted on the evolution of Domestic Angels over the years. We have built strong partnerships providing us with a firm and lasting framework of support and supporters, all part of our success criteria. In turn, we take our turn to support emerging businesses through seminars, connectivity and mentoring.

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Sam attends a Festive All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Women and Enterprise

Yesterday was the monthly meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Women and Enterprise in the festive Houses of Parliament. Representing Domestic Angels, Sam Acton, attended the meeting followed by Christmas drinks and speeches from the Women in Parliament APPG in the Thames Pavilion. We are particularly excited to have been appointed to a focus group within the APPG addressing business support, coaching and mentoring for women in business. Post meeting speeches were opened by Mims Davies MP and featured Maria Miller MP, Craig Tracey MP and Caroline Dinenage MP.

We feel privileged to be part of this APPG. It is an honour that our business opens doors for us to walk through allowing us to make a positive difference for others.

Friday, 2 December 2016

Parliament Week 2016 - #dodemocracy

Our commitment to the Parliament Week initiative since 2013 delivers an annual event to the senior schools of Bournemouth, bringing 60+ students into the Town Hall to practice and nurture their debating skills with the support of local, national and European politicians. The students prepare extensively and overcome nerves to participate in debates on current key topics. This year they discussed the validity and role of referendums in the UK and debated the speed at which article 50 should be activated in the matter of Brexit. The student’s performances and clarity of delivery were beyond their years and impressed all the politicians giving everyone renewed hope and energy for the electorate and leaders of tomorrow.

Domestic Angels were approached in 2013 to take the role of Partner to Parliament Week in the Bournemouth area as a direct result of the work we had been doing, and still carry out, to help women into work and empower them in the workplace. As Partners, we chose to focus on engaging pre-voting young people to show them that their voice does count and that they can make it heard. These 2 key messages will bring us the business and political leaders of tomorrow. Empowering the next generation in this way directly reflects the Domestic Angels ethos counteracting apathy and disenfranchisement.

Read the Daily Echo Article Here

Monday, 7 November 2016

Samantha Acton: Women in Business, There Should Be More of Us

The infographic shown here clearly displays the classic reasons why women are more reluctant than their male counterparts to start their own businesses. It is my concern that these statistics reflect belief rather than fact, that us ladies just need to believe in ourselves a little bit more.

‘It’s too risky’ – yes, businesses fail but it is far easier to find yourself stuck in a job which you don’t particularly like and doesn’t suit your family needs. You can reduce risk by carrying out research and planning in advance of launch, get advice, the Start Up Britain Bus being one port of call to put into your diary http://startupbritain.org/bus/

‘Concerned the business will fail’ – we are all concerned that our plans will not be realised in quite the way we have imagined. Seek good and solid mentors to guide you through the rough and the smooth. Mentors have years of business experience and often offer their services free of charge or at a minimal cost especially to start-ups. Try contacting your local Outset http://www.outset.org/

‘The current economic climate is too difficult’ – this is a perception which could be applied to any month of any year however the strongest businesses are often born out of the ashes of recession or the necessity of the founder. If you really want to succeed, and you’ve done your homework well, the economic climate will rarely hinder the most determined.

‘Need more skills’ – developing and running your own business totally from scratch, from the proverbial blank piece of paper, does involve rolling up your sleeves and learning all of the disciplines of business from bookkeeping to employment law and far more. Purchasing a comprehensive franchise which takes these pains away so that you can concentrate on business growth is an option. Take a look at The Domestic Angels management franchise opportunity which also allows you to work from home and flex around family demands http://franchise.domestic-angels.com/

‘Don’t think I could get enough money to start up’ – many business ideas need very little financial investment to get off the ground, the big demands are often your own determination and time. Seek guidance from your mentor before approaching investors and ask the Financial Consultants at http://www.outset.org/ to check that your figures are robust and to recommend local funding groups

Friday, 14 October 2016

Domestic Angels partner with The Crumbs Project and encourages other small businesses to do the same

Samantha Acton, of Domestic Angels in Bournemouth, has partnered with local charity, The Crumbs Project, which helps those with mental health problems and learning disabilities become independent. Crumbs recently encouraged and supported Domestic Angels in taking on Kelly, a woman with severe learning disabilities.

Crumbs Training and Development Manager, Ursula Boardman, advised “Although the law is clear that people with disabilities shouldn’t be discriminated against when seeking employment, only 46.7% of those with disabilities were in employment at the end of 2015, compared to 80.3 % of non-disabled people. Given that there are seven million people of working age in the UK who have a disability, or health condition, there’s a huge amount of untapped talent for small business owners with vacancies to fill.”

Domestic Angels employs 20 people who carry out housework in people’s homes and holiday businesses. Speaking of the Crumbs partnership, Samantha advised, “The only cost to the company was time, we just needed to have a few more cups of tea and a few more chats than we would with other recruits. It was nothing more than that. We needed to gain Kelly’s confidence, so she felt she could open up, talk to us and ask questions. It’s new for her to come out to work.”

Kelly, with the support of her personal advisor at Crumbs, began shadowing another member of staff in cleaning properties two months ago. Now a paid member of staff, she is on her way to taking on a similar workload to other members of staff and becoming a fully-fledged Domestic Angel."

Crumbs training and Development Manager Ursula Boardman commented, “We first met Domestic Angels at a recruitment fair in Bournemouth. Kelly was there with a member of The Crumbs Project staff who was there supporting her in her search for work. Marie who is a Team Leader at Domestic Angels was really interested to hear about the work that Crumbs does and was extremely helpful chatting to Kelly about the opportunities within the business. Kelly subsequently decided to pursue the opportunity to work for Domestic Angels and a work trial was set up.”

Continuing Ursula added, “Kelly was ecstatic when we told her that she had been accepted to do a work trial. Marie has been wonderful with Kelly, showing compassion and patience, spending time with Kelly and building Kelly’s confidence. Kelly is now in paid employment with Domestic Angels which has not only boosted Kelly’s confidence but has made her feel accepted and capable. We would like to say a huge thank you to Domestic Angels for the support that they have given.”

Sam Acton concluded, “Small businesses should not feel daunted. I strongly recommend that they should try and embrace the opportunity if it presents itself. You will get back just as much as you put in. We can’t wait to meet the next candidate Crumbs put forward!”



Friday, 23 September 2016

Sam attends Franchise Conference

Sam Acton, Director at Domestic Angels, attended the Encouraging Women into Franchising (EWIF) 2016 Annual Conference on Thursday this week in Stratford upon Avon. The objective of EWIF is threefold: to encourage women to consider buying a franchise, to encourage business women to franchise their existing operations and to help franchisors attract more women to their networks. “As a business new to the franchise sector and with a personal passion to support women in business, this conference and our membership of EWIF is very significant. A recent NatWest Entrepreneurship Monitor clearly shows that women tend to see more barriers to starting a new business than men. Franchising provides the perfect reduced risk option instantly breaking down both perceived and real barriers.”

The conference was hosted by Sarah Carlisle founder of Coconut Creatives, a business that helps franchisors find their perfect franchisees. Delegates enjoyed ‘state of the franchise nation’ opening speech from EWIF CEO Clive Sawyer, a compact networking masterclass delivered by Clare Davis from Nova Associates and a keynote speech and song from Celia Delaney.

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Parliamentary Reception for Female Entrepreneurs

Not your average Monday in the office for Domestic Angels on 12th September! Sam from Domestic Angels attended the All Party Parliamentary Group for Women & Enterprise Reception celebrating female entrepreneurship.

Hosted by Craig Tracey MP, the Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Women and Enterprise, the discussion circled around the findings from of the NatWest Entrepreneurship Monitor.

The event finished with also featured a keynote speech from Helen Pattinson, founder of Montezuma London (their chocolate is a guilty pleasure at Angels HQ!) She spoke passionately about the need for female role models.

There was also a speech from Caroline Dinenage MP, Secretary of State for Women, Equalities and Early Years Caroline who discussed the economic importance for the UK of increasing support for female entrepreneurs.

As well as Julie Baker, Head of Enterprise at NatWest, presented who ran through the results of the Entrepreneurship Monitor, which clearly showed the type of what support entrepreneurial women need but also what and more importantly the scale of the massive latent potential they have.

The Parliament event and seminar attracted a handpicked crowd of 100 female entrepreneurs and MPs from around the country to Portcullis House, Westminster.

Reflecting on the event, Sam commented “The findings of the monitor and the words from the Secretary of State and Craig Tracey MP gave me confidence that this government is on track to connect with the needs, and therefore potential, of the female entrepreneur sector and in particular growing sophistication and power of home based businesses.”

Friday, 9 September 2016

Sam interviewed on The Successful Women Podcast Show

Sam from Domestic Angels was recently interviewed by Venus National Award Winner Gill Donnel on her Successful Women Podcast Show.

Visit The Successful Women Podcast Show Website

Meet Samantha Acton, award-winning Director Domestic Angels.

"I have the best job in the world! Helping people in their homes, really making a positive difference to the lives of individuals, families and home owners is a real joy.

Customer service and focus is everything. By thinking about the priorities and needs of others I can deliver services and solutions with minimal fuss and maximum impact.

A busy family is completely different to a housebound client, a holiday home is nothing like an annual spring clean, I know this and so do all of the Angels. My goal is to focus on your needs and the needs of your home, this is how I have developed the business since 2002. Consequently the Angels and I still look after clients who have been with us from our very first year in business and staff who joined Domestic Angels in 2002 still work for me.

The Angels visit family homes most often whilst customers are at work and school. By the time customers return home, the kitchens and bathrooms are clean and tidy, the living room is ready for a relaxing evening, the bedrooms are dust free and calm.

Our elderly and housebound clients build solid, long term relationships with their Angels. This service is far more than housework, this is companionship and more often friendship. We support people through all that life has to offer and still ensure that their home is clean and safe and that their fridge is full."

The Successful Women Podcast Show
Listen to Sam Acton, award-winning director of Domestic Angels talk about her business and the amazing franchise opportunities available now!

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Domestic Angels interviewed by the Franchise Specialist

Domestic Angels was founded in 2002, what made you initially start the business and what do you attribute the growth of the company to?

I had returned to work post maternity leave which found me out of the house, and away from my baby, 12 hours per day and sometimes for days on end. The knock on effect to home life, social life or even just seeing my own Mum was overwhelming and unacceptable. I left my ‘career’ and founded Domestic Angels to solve a mate’s need for help at home, the rest, as they say is history. The company has grown, and more specifically evolved, because Domestic Angels is a great product offering domestic clients the service and relationship they seek as well as providing our staff with the dignity they deserve by being employed and looked after, they are our customers too. These points together with the fact that I thoroughly enjoy business, providing solutions and in particular breaking new ground has resulted in a dynamic business energy which demands growth and evolution.

When did you begin franchising the business and why did you decide to take this route?
The Domestic Angels franchise is brand new to the market although we have spent the last 2 years preparing our offering ourselves in-house so that we can be sure that our franchisees enjoy the very best of our processes and that it totally reflects our corporate moral framework rather than paying a consultant to make us fit an associations preferred formula. Deciding to take the franchise route was no small decision, we considered the franchise arena to be full of sharks and didn’t want to join the herd. In true Angels style we realised we could create our offering in our own style reflecting our standards, ethics and spirit to guarantee that our offering is successful just as Domestic Angels already is. It’s still compliant where it needs to be but more importantly our long established formula is not compromised by external preferences.

What do you think are the real perks/benefits in running a Domestic Angels Franchise?

Franchisees will be operating their own business in accordance with our tried and tested processes supported by our specialist management team. Between us we have seen and heard it all before and we expect to work very closely with our franchisees, their success is our success, this is important to us just after happiness.

A large part of the Domestic Angels success is that it is a home based business run on a part time basis and we expect our franchisees to do the same. Being at the school gates is important to us as is helping with homework, we don’t mind an early start to enable focus to family breakfast or odd evening hours to be able to honour daytime commitments to elderly relatives, our franchisees will feel the same about life and enjoy the same flexibility to prioritise to achieve work life balance in the best possible way.

What type of person is most likely to flourish as a Domestic Angels franchisee?

Somebody who excels at customer service, communicating sales and marketing. We’re going to be providing substantial support in all other business disciplines which means franchisees need to either follow procedures specifically or we’ll be doing the work for them ie book keeping. We know we can’t all be brilliant at everything so we want our franchisees to use their energies to focus on their strengths and enjoy growing their own management franchise.

Can you tell us more about the start-up costs, ongoing management fees and training that is provided?

The first few franchisees will enjoy a start-up cost just short of £10K, we know we are new to the game so offering this discount is reasonable to us plus these lucky people will be totally spoilt as we over indulge in making sure they are happy and successful. Once we are underway this cost will be £12,997. Management fees are 10% of profit, so we have a stake in ensuring franchisees are profitable, plus some minimal costs to cover on-going social media, PR, software and bookkeeping. As our figures are based on a real business which has been running for years we are confident that these costs are vital for success and a hindrance.

Once signed up we will get our franchisees underway with preparations at home before attending a 3 day residential course at no additional cost which they will leave armed with a full marketing/PR strategy, full understanding of how to operate our processes within the company intranet, total engagement with our culture and good relationships with all of our experts who are keen to ensure their business adventure is supercharged to success.

Find out more about the Domestic Angels franchise opportunity by visiting: http://www.domestic-angels.com/franchise.html

Friday, 8 July 2016

Domestic Angels Franchise Talk at Dorset Women in Business

On Wednesday 6th July Domestic Angels Franchising sponsored the first Dorset Women in Business Lunch Networking event at the Chocolate Hotel in Bournemouth centre.

Sam Acton & our Angels Management Team spoke about their business story to date and the exciting future for the franchising of Domestic Angels!

We were also treated to an entertaining talk and truffle sampling by Gerry Wilton, owner of the Chocolate hotel - there was even a chocolate fountain!

So if you, or anyone you know, might be interested in starting your own business? Take a look at the Domestic Angels Franchise Opportunity here; http://domestic-angels.com/franchise.html

 You can view all the photos from the event, on our Facebook page here;
Domestic Angels Networking Lunch Photographs

Monday, 20 June 2016

Domestic Angels to Sponsor Dorset Women in Business Event

Domestic Angels & Domestic Angels Franchising will be sponsoring the July lunch for the Dorset Women in Business on the 6th at the Chocolate Boutique Hotel in Bournemouth.

Dorset Women in Business (DWIB) is a fun & friendly female-only networking group covering most of Dorset through meetings in venues such as Wimborne, Bournemouth & Christchurch.

The Domestic Angels Team have been regular attendees at the Christchurch & Boscombe meetings for the past several years.

We are very excited about this one as Sam Acton and team from Domestic Angels will be speaking about our Franchise offering. The Angels are offering their business as a franchise to select local people who have great customer service skills and great corporate values. They will be telling you their story to date and about the franchise future. We have an enviable reputation in the industry and wider business community.

Tickets for this event can be purchased HERE

The Facebook event can be found HERE


Monday, 18 April 2016

Domestic Angels become EWIF members

Domestic Angels are very proud to announce we are now members of EWIF - Encouraging Women into Franchising

EWIF’s primary focus is to support women who are looking for a route into the franchise industry. Their franchise operations are keen to welcome more female franchisees to their networks


" Established in 2002, Domestic Angels helps people in their homes with housework, home help and holiday home changeovers. I founded the business as a lifestyle solution to generate income whilst allowing me to have the time I very much wanted for my family and myself. I am very happy to be able to offer the same solution and work-life balance to you via the Domestic Angels franchise.

As a management franchisee you will be able to share in the success of a very well established and award winning brand and business formula with the figures to back it up. Our tried and tested processes for client management, recruitment and employment will be available to you via our company intranet with our management experts on the end of the phone to support you at all times. Distance and residential training during induction will ensure you are familiar with these processes and systems. We will also be guiding you to develop your very own social media and PR strategy for a supercharged start in your very own business. Our social media and PR experts are keen to work with you to make you successful as is our customer service champion to help you be totally at ease with the Domestic Angels culture.

Being able to offer you the Domestic Angels franchise is a great honour and one that myself and my team are committed to delivering successfully in line with the cultural values we hold so very dearly.

I look forward to the opportunity of discussing your business and life plans and how Domestic Angels can make them a reality.

All the best, Samantha Acton
Founding Director at Domestic Angels (UK) Ltd and Domestic Angels Franchising Ltd"

Friday, 18 March 2016

The Benefits of a Franchise Business

New entrepreneurs have many important decisions to make, but one of the biggest is whether to start a business of their own creation as a sole proprietor or to purchase a franchise.

A franchise offers many advantages over a typical sole proprietorship that you may not have thought about.

A franchise business has higher likelihood of success because a proven business formula is in place, the products, services, and business operations have already been established. It also offers the independence of business ownership, but is supported by the benefits of a business network.
High Street Banks typically see franchise owners as having a lower risk of repayment default and are more likely to loan money.

The extensive training, education and support that a franchise offers are designed to bring franchisees up to speed on the most successful business methods for their business.

As you can see, doing business as a franchise gives the entrepreneur many advantages over the sole proprietorship approach to starting a business; thereby avoiding costly mistakes such as spending too much for equipment or developing an ineffective marketing campaign.

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

How I'm turning my award-winning business into a franchise

A HOME business started by an award-winning Bournemouth woman is to become a franchise.

Samantha Acton set up domestic cleaning service Domestic Angels in 2002, when she was at home with a baby after being made redundant.

It now has around 20 staff and 138 clients, and provides around 1,000 hours of services a month.

Samantha became prominent in Dorset’s business world, winning the prize for Home Based Business at the Dorset Venus Awards in 2013 and chairing Southbourne On Sea Business Association.

She said: “As the founder of the company, I did exactly what new franchisees might be doing – setting up a business around my family, working from home and putting in the hours to suit me and my changing needs as my family grew.

“The franchise will allow others to grow their own business without the pain of establishing a brand or comprehensive processes required to run an effective business in the 21st century.”

The company offers services from regular housework to intensive spring cleans, as well as an element of home help for elderly clients needing more support.

Samantha has worked with advisers including Richard Holden, head of franchising at the Lloyds Banking Group; Dormen business mentor Martin Spooner; and Kim Rawson, a high performance mentor and company chairman.

Samantha said: “Our vision is to make Domestic Angels the number one regional franchise for domestic cleaning. We have worked really hard to create an incredibly attractive and affordable franchise package which we are confident will have significant appeal to potential business owners.”

She anticipates that potential franchisees at the launch stage could be in areas surrounding the Bournemouth-Poole conurbation, including Purbeck, Wimborne or the New Forest.

“We are looking for potential franchisees whose work ethic, vision and values match those of Domestic Angels – values that are based on family, community, trust and professionalism,” she said.


Get in touch
Anyone interested in learning more about becoming a franchisee and exploring the business and earnings potential, opportunities and support available is asked to contact Samantha Acton at Domestic Angels
e: franchise@domestic-angels.com