Create growth for your business

Chapter 1

Things to consider when hiring

At Qred, we love small businesses! Unfortunately, you are getting fewer. The truth is that the percentage of businesses that want to grow has dropped from 77% in 2015 to 69% in 2017*. There are many indications that the main reason for this drop is the costs and laws that prevent small businesses from growing. But how should you think about hiring?


It's a real jungle of do's and don'ts when it comes to hiring and it's important that you as an entrepreneur understand that you have a big responsibility. The new edition of "Hiring" provides you with all the information you need on laws and regulations, employment contracts, collective agreements, forms of employment, and so on.

Growth support for traders

Did you know that a new law** (entered into force on January 1, 2017) makes it easier for you as a sole trader to hire a new employee. The law is valid until 2021 and to meet the requirements of the Swedish Tax Agency for the support, the employment must last for at least three months and the time of work must be at least 20 hours per week. The reduction only applies to the part of the salary that does not exceed SEK 25,000 per month. It can be granted for a maximum of 12 months. Perfect for those who work in seasonal activities or perhaps want to employ someone close to you?
"An employer must always draw up an employment contract. It can be oral, but it is usually agreed in writing."


Are you afraid to take the plunge? Let someone do an internship with you! The University of Applied Sciences has something called LIA (Learning at Work) which is a longer internship. In fact, their own follow-ups show that about 50% get work where they have practiced. A mutually beneficial way for both of you to see if you are a good match. A bit like a trial period. The different schools offer training in most industries so you should be able to find someone who can be good for you and your company. Also try to think outside the box, does your salon need a new website and help with communication and marketing? Then find a course that fits your requirement profile and apply to their training manager. It doesn't have to be a place as a hairdresser just because that's what you sell. The company may have many other parts that may need help.

You can, of course, get trainees from other educational institutions than the University of Applied Sciences. Secondary schools and adult education programs also usually have internships. Just consider factors such as age and whether the work is dangerous, stressful or involves cash handling, for example. There are laws and rules about this. The easiest way is usually to ask the responsible trainer, they usually have all the answers.

I can't afford to grow - what do I do?

Growing a small business is a big decision that requires its fair share of consideration. Start by looking at the benefits and opportunities of hiring and then do the same with weaknesses and threats. Is liquidity and funding a threat? Then we can help you finance your growth temporarily, you can always apply for a business loan with us. The application takes 1 minute. You will be notified within 1 hour and the money is paid out the same day.

* Tillväxtverket
Chapter 2

Hiring to grow

Hiring to grow

Hiring is always a big challenge for small businesses. Can we afford it? What if it doesn't work? There are many questions and we want to give you answers. Maybe an entry-level job for a newcomer or a trainee is best for you? In 2017, 144 489 people immigrated to Sweden. Fewer than the previous year and the four previous years. However, you should remember that everyone who moves to Sweden is counted. Even those who are Swedish citizens but have lived abroad, according to Statistics Sweden. Since the Second World War, both immigration and emigration have increased, after several decades dominated by emigration from Sweden.

Over the past 10 years, immigration has increased from countries affected by war. For example, Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia and Syria. So of the 144 489 people who immigrated to Sweden, 22 327 were already Swedish citizens.

Labour shortage a reason for companies' lack of growth

In most lists, reports and research findings on the challenges of entrepreneurs and the reasons why they go bankrupt, labor shortages are at the top of the list. There are many industries in Sweden that have an urgent need to hire more people.

More people are moving abroad

Recently, more and more people are emigrating from Sweden again. Over 50 000 people have emigrated every year since 2011. In 2017, Denmark was the most popular country to emigrate to. A total of 4 113 people emigrated from Sweden to Denmark that year.

I want to employ migrants. What should I do?

Start by establishing it in the workplace. Then write ads in both Swedish and English. Preferably a second language to attract even more people. State that language and foreign background are meritorious when applying. Maybe even a requirement? There are many groups on e.g. Facebook where you can join and advertise that you are looking for people of a certain origin. If that doesn't work, you can always post the job ad on Arbetsförmedlingen, Metrojobb, Jobbsafari, Blocket Jobb, Monster, etc. As a third step, you can hire a recruitment agency to help you find the right candidates. But be aware that they can charge quite high fees for their work.

Entry-level jobs for new arrivals

You can receive financial support of up to 80% of the salary if you employ a person who is new to Sweden. The purpose of the support is for new arrivals to enter the labor market and be able to study Swedish in the meantime.

Criteria for financial support

- Obtained a residence permit within the last 36 months

- Has a residence card and is a family member of an EU/EEA citizen

- Has an ongoing establishment plan (according to the Act on Establishment Measures for Certain Newly Arrived Persons)

- Has reached the age of 20

- Is registered with the Public Employment Service

Things to consider about employment

- You can employ a newly arrived person on a full-time or part-time, permanent, probationary or temporary basis

- If hourly and on-demand employment is granted, you must be able to guarantee a specific degree of service and period

- You receive compensation for supervision

- The period of employment support is usually 1 year, but with the possibility of extension for a further year.

You must give the employee a salary and other employment benefits that are included in the collective agreement for the industry. This is regardless of whether your company has a collective agreement or not. You can read more about entry-level jobs on Arbetsförmedlingen's website.

Today there are about 1.9 million people who live in Sweden but were born abroad. This is about every sixth person in the Swedish population.

Why don't companies hire immigrants?

Lack of language skills is often cited as the main obstacle. At the same time, the majority of these companies report that they have not taken any major measures to prevent language skills from becoming a barrier to recruitment. At the same time, Sweden is one of the best countries in the world for English. Northern Europe together with the Netherlands often top the lists of non-native English speakers. A fairly old report from a survey in 2006 shows that Sweden was the most English-speaking country in the entire EU.

In other words, speaking English in the workplace should work quite well while those who do not speak Swedish attend SFI or language courses in another way. It may even add value that everyone gets to practice their language skills in the workplace. In fact, an English-speaking workplace is seen as a merit by many companies if you want to work internationally.

Active diversity management

Many companies have started what they call active diversity work, which involves trying to achieve as broad a workplace as possible. Take Securitas in Gothenburg as an example. Out of 78 employed parking attendants, 44 have a non-Swedish background. The aim is to be able to meet more people and tourists by having a multilingual working group. The same behavior is found in healthcare and the police who meet all people in society and need to be equipped for the tasks that come with their work.

At Qred we have operations in 3 countries. So having employees with different language skills is a given. But our relatively small team includes representatives from Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Greece, Serbia, Latvia and the USA. Guess there will be talk about the Olympics and other events!

But it develops us as a company when we exchange knowledge and experience from each other. Think of it as building a team. Not everyone can be a striker or a goalkeeper. All roles are important and have unique skills that suit different roles and contribute to the development of the company.

Employment contracts

An employer must always draw up an employment contract. It can be oral, but it is usually agreed in writing. They should be drawn up in duplicate with each party receiving a signed copy.

The following should be included in a written employment contract:

- Name and other contact details of the employer and the employee.

- Starting date.

- Place of work. If the employee does not have a permanent place of work, this should be stated in the contract.

- Duties.

- Job title or position title. If it is a complicated or otherwise special position, you can add a description.

- Form of employment. Is it an open-ended or permanent position?
- Scope. Part-time or full-time?

- Probationary period.

- Periods of notice.

- If you are employed for a limited period of time, the end date of your employment should be stated.

- How often your salary should be paid and which pay periods apply.

- Normal working hours. How many hours per day or per week and what times you are expected to work.

- Conditions for holidays.

- If the employer is part of a collective agreement.

- Conditions for working abroad.

- Insurance.
Keep in mind that the information obligation under the Employment Protection Act (LAS) applies even if something changes in the existing employment contract. You must provide such information within one month.

Obligations of the staff member

There are three main things that an employee must consider. It should also be clearly described in the employment contract.

1. Duty of loyalty

2. All employees have a so-called duty of loyalty to the employer

3. Duty of confidentiality

An employee may not disclose or use information that could in any way harm the employer. For example, this could be information about customers or special production methods. Confidentiality is common in the legal system, health care, government agencies, etc.

Non-competition clauses

Even if the employee has a duty of loyalty to the employer, it may be useful to write that an employee may not engage in any kind of competing activity during his or her employment. And that knowledge of the company cannot be used if the person changes employers or starts their own business. This is usually referred to as one year after the end of the employment relationship with the previous employer.

Collective agreements

If you are an employer bound by a collective or affiliated agreement, you must take into account the provisions and rules contained therein. The agreement is a written contract drawn up between the workers' organization and the employer.

Hiring someone on a trial basis

There are two types of employment: fixed-term and open-ended. Permanent employment is the same as open-ended employment. It applies, as it sounds, until further notice. Keep in mind that the Employment Protection Act (LAS) applies and many companies use a probationary period to start an employment relationship. The aim is for the probationary period to be converted into a permanent position at the end of the probationary period. By law, the probationary period may not exceed 6 months unless the employer is bound by a collective agreement that provides for a shorter or longer probationary period. Usually the probationary period is regulated to 6 months.

The trial period can be seen as a mutual test period for both employer and employee and there is no notice period for employees. However, there is a right to be notified of the end of the trial period 14 days in advance.

Wage subsidy when hiring someone with reduced working capacity due to disability

The Public Employment Service can also step in and subsidize employment if a person has a disability such as limited mobility or mental illness. Together with the Public Employment Service, you then draw up a plan to increase the employee's ability to work. The person employed must have a salary in accordance with the collective agreement and other benefits that are equivalent to the collective agreement in the industry.

3 forms of wage subsidies

1. Wage subsidy for development

A subsidy for the person to try out a profession or attend a training course in order to develop.

2. Wage subsidy for employment

The subsidy in this case is for adapting work and workplace for an employee.

3. Wage subsidy for security of employment

Long-term support for a person to be able to keep their job. The wage subsidy is affected by the wage cost and work ability of the person you want to employ. You make this assessment together with the employment service and the employee. You can get a grant for the part of the salary cost that is not higher than a gross salary of 18 300 SEK/month for a full-time position. There is also a chance to receive a development grant for development activities. You can read more about wage subsidies at Arbetsförmedlingen.

Sole proprietorship? Use growth support!

A new law that entered into force on January 1, 2017, makes it easier for you as a sole proprietor to be employed. The biggest and most difficult challenge for small businesses is to go from 0 to 1 employee (even if you are technically an employee with AB). The law is fixed in time and applies until 2021. The Swedish Tax Agency's requirement is that the employment must last for at least 3 months and cover at least 20 hours/week. However, it only applies to the part that does not exceed SEK 25,000/month and you can receive the support for a maximum of 12 months.


Such a traineeship is usually 3 months but at most 6 months. It is completely free of charge for employers and you can get an interpreter. You choose which skills the trainee should have and you do not commit to anything just because you register your interest with the Public Employment Service. Your responsibility is that the trainee gets something out of the period that is meritorious and can lead to employment with you or another employer. You can end the traineeship at any time if things don't work out between you.

Trainee from school

One thing that has become popular is taking on a trainee. It can be called different things depending on the school, but the most common is LIA (Learning at Work). These are often slightly longer internships that allow you to really benefit from the person. At the same time, the trainee feels that he or she really gets something out of the internship.

Sole proprietorship? Use growth support!

Think outside the box. Maybe there's something your company needs help with that you can't afford to hire someone for right away? For example, marketing or some other training. Let the person create their own service by proving themselves through an internship.

Staff records

Don't forget that in many sectors you have to keep a staff register. In some cases, an electronic one is required for reporting. In 2018, the focus is on undeclared work and social dumping. Both will be tackled through the obligation to keep staff registers.
Chapter 3

How to avoid bankruptcy

Bankruptcy. The big elephant in the room for many entrepreneurs. It shouldn't be hard to talk about bankruptcy. Who knows? Maybe one of your loved ones has tips and solutions to the problems you are facing? We give you 9 tips to avoid bankruptcy.

9 tips to avoid bankruptcy

1. talk about it
2. reduce inventory
3. negotiate and be tough
4. credit terms
5. your own receivables
6. staff
7. cancel subscriptions and review your fixed costs
8. marketing
9. business loans from Qred

Talk about it

The first tip is just that - communication. Dare to open up to colleagues, employees, family and friends. It's important to let your guard down and be unpretentious so that you don't keep brooding and identifying problem after problem rather than finding solutions. Distinguish between things and people so as not to put too much weight on your shoulders. Remember:
"It's not your fault. It's what you do that's wrong."

Reducing the stock of goods

Can you remove certain products or services from your range? Good! Then you can free up capital to spend on buying more of what actually sells. Maybe you can even reduce the price if you buy larger volumes from your supplier? Win-win!

Negotiate and be tough

Are there several suppliers you can negotiate with? It doesn't have to be about price. It can be about delivery times, invoicing time or volume prices. Take the time to investigate the options and have the courage to make demands. Suppliers also need to sell.

Credit periods

Check with your supplier if you can change the credit period. For example, from 30 days to 90 days so that you have time to earn revenue from the sale.

Your own claims

Does someone owe you money? Make sure you collect the debts you owe. You may want to call the debtor yourself to see what has happened. They may have missed the invoice. If they are unable to pay it all at once, they may be able to pay a larger part now and the rest later. Set up a payment plan. This can often be more effective than simply sending it to debt collection. This is partly because you have the chance to actually improve your liquidity earlier than if the debt collection agency starts collecting it later.


You may have to lay off workers or get someone to reduce their working hours. Look at your options for getting support and grants or taking on trainees as temporary help. Employees have unemployment insurance, but if you as an entrepreneur choose not to take a salary, you are in trouble on a personal level.

Cancel expensive subscriptions and
review fixed costs

Are you stuck with expensive subscriptions such as telephone, broadband, TV, etc. that you can get rid of completely or switch to cheaper alternatives? Also review your rent and negotiate with your landlord.


There are many quick fixes, but without long-term thinking and visibility, your business will eventually fail. Start with the low-hanging fruit and the methods that are free or very cheap. We have several articles on marketing in our blog.

Business loans from Qred

If you need to solve a temporary need for liquidity, you can do it quickly, safely and easily with a Qred Business Loan. Often our customers use a loan as a complement to the other measures listed above.Our loans have a fixed monthly fee and no set-up fees or other hidden charges. The application is digital and takes 1 minute. You will be notified within 1 hour and the money will be disbursed the same day.

Business contributions

These are grants or subsidies paid by certain legal entities, i.e. natural or legal persons, to a company. In some cases, there may be specific repayment conditions attached to the grant or aid.


There are a number of EU grants that you can apply for. You can read more about these on or on the European Commission's website.

Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth

Tillväxtverket has a number of different grants and projects to help businesses grow.

Regional investment support is one of these grants. For those who are starting a new business or need to part-finance investments or payroll costs. This support is given for investments in e.g. machinery, real estate and premises, salary costs, training and consultancy services. However, it is restricted to certain geographical areas, particularly the northern part of Sweden.
Regional grant for business developmentis another grant that can be applied for by small and medium-sized privately owned companies in sparsely populated and rural areas that operate on market terms. The definition is determined by the county administrative boards in each area and applications are made on an ongoing basis.

‍Transportation grants are intended to provide some compensation for the disadvantages faced by businesses in the four northernmost counties. Applications for transport in the first half of the year must be submitted by September 30 and applications for transport in the second half of the year must be submitted by March 30.

Horizon 2020 - Fast track to innovationis a pilot project within the EU that aims to speed up the market introduction of advanced ideas. Such as new products, services, processes or business models.

Business development checks are the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth's support for small businesses that want to bring in external expertise for development.

Employment services

Start-up support gives you a contribution to your livelihood during the start of your business. Your employment officer will assess your ability to run your business.

Business loans in an easier way

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