Starting a business is easier than you think. Use these easy steps to jump-start the process of launching your company. Planning for every aspect of your business and having expert resources available is key to success. This guide will show you the steps to follow and the resources at your disposal.
- This page, Starting a New Business, is offered by
- Executive Office of Economic Development
- Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development
- Massachusetts Office of Business Development
Starting a New Business
Table of Contents
1. Plan Ahead Before Going Into Business
Is the timing right for starting your business? Complete our simple, five-minute questionnaire to find out if you're on the right track. -From the Small Business Development Center (MSBDC)
2. Write a Business Plan
Every great business begins with a plan. And while that plan will evolve over time, this initial document will serve as your guide over the next 3-5 years. Click to view a collection of short articles on creating your own business plan. -From the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA)
3. Get Training and Counseling
Starting a business can be tough, especially if it's your first time. You and your business can succeed by using training, counseling, and other assistance geared towards business owners.
Tips from the Federal Small Business Administration
4. Get Advice on Business Financing
A number of agencies offer financing options for small businesses.
Online Business Financing Courses
For Businesses That Need Non-Traditional Funding
5. Use State Services and Grants
The Commonwealth supports businesses through grants and online tools.
Regional Economic Development Organization
STEP Grants for Exports Marketing
6. Choose a Business Structure
7. File for a 'Doing Business As' (DBA) Certificate
A "Doing-Business-As" Certificate (DBA) is a quick and simple way to set up your business through your town or city clerk's office. See if it's right for you and get simple instructions on how to file.
8. Register Your Business with the State
Corporations, LLCs and other business entities need to register with the Secretary of the Commonwealth before beginning business in Massachusetts. Annual updates are usually required as well. Begin and/or update your filings at the Secretary of State's Office.
9. Get a Tax ID and Learn About Tax Rules
Prior to registering your business with the state, you'll need an "Employer Identification Number" (EIN), issued by the IRS. Obtaining one is free and can be done easily online.
Understanding and managing taxes is an important part of running a successful business. Here you'll find many helpful resources on this vital topic.
Tax Responsibilities by Business Type
10. Obtain Licenses and Permits
Successful businesses stay current through federal, state and local rules and regulations. Use this section to make sure you're up to date.
State and Federal Business Regulations
Expedited Local Permitting Info
11. Tips for Hiring and Managing Employees
Here you'll find information and resources related to the hiring, training, and managing employees in your business.
Guide to Workers' Compensation
12. Small Business Assistance Groups
Massachusetts has many organizations ready to help small businesses.