Hi, I’m Nicola Craggs, I am a married mum of 2 boys aged 4 and 1 and we live with our 2 large dogs in a small village just outside of Chester le Street, County Durham. Our family home is usually a bit manic as it is also the base for both my own and my husband’s businesses. Running 2 businesses means we don’t often get a lot of spare time, but when we do we really enjoy packing the car up and heading out to the countryside or the beach.
After gaining my accounting degree, qualifications in taxation and working for various big 4 accountancy firms, I found I was becoming bored with the routine of working for large corporations and the anonymity that comes with being an employee of such companies. My husband was in the process of setting up his own building firm and I decided that following the birth of our first son, that I would work with him in his business, taking care of the admin and finances, instead of returning to my job. I loved the flexibility of being able to do all the baby and toddler activities with my son during the day, whilst catching up with work and emails during nap times and evenings.
This worked well for the next 3 years however once the Brexit decision had been made, we thought carefully of the impact this could take on the building trade and as a result, in August 2016, I decided to set up my own company, Advance Payroll and Tax Limited, to help other businesses with their admin and finance tasks. Setting up my new business was a big challenge for me, especially with a 3 year old and 9 month old to also look after, but again I knew I had to plan my time accordingly, setting time aside for working and activities with my sons.
Advance Payroll and Tax Limited has now been in business for 13 months and is going from strength to strength. Whilst I still love being able to work from home, I also really enjoy meeting with new and existing clients and hearing about their career journeys and how their businesses have evolved. My current challenge is studying for my ICEAW accounting exams and hope to achieve chartered accountant and tax adviser status in the next couple of years.
I came across a BizMum’s post in a Facebook post and decided to try a meeting in January 2017. Like others, I have really struggled since setting up my business to attend networking meetings but as the BizMum’s meetings encourage mums in business to bring along their children, I really had no excuse! The meetings are really supportive and welcoming. Earlier this year I had the chance to be ‘guest speaker’, which is something totally out of my comfort zone and pushed my confidence.
Tel: 0191 4109780
Mobile: 07506 620 413