Frequently Asked Questions

Would you thrive running your business within a supportive partnership?

Where the more you put in the more you get out? If this sounds like your sort of business venture, then we’d love to hear from you.

You will need to have had a minimum of two years’ experience in either pub or general retail management and you must have a Personal Licence (APLH)

Below are a number of questions and answers you may find useful to read before you consider if you would like to apply to join the Advocate Team.

Do I need to invest in an Operator Agreement?

You don’t have to buy any stock or fixtures and fittings. However, you will need to lodge a small bond of £500 -£1500 depending on the business with the Company. This will be held for the duration of the agreement and returned should you ever leave, subject to the terms of your operator agreement.

How can I run my own pub?

You need to do your research to make sure it is the right pub for you. You will discuss your ideas and plans for the pub with the operations manager.

If you take an Operator Agreement with Advocate Pubs you will need to set up a limited company or sole trader company. This is a quick and straightforward process. We can recommend a firm of accountants who successfully work for a number of existing operators.

Will I be an Advocate employee?

No – you won’t be an employee of Advocate Group. You will be employed by the Limited Company that you have set up.

Will I be responsible for staff?

You will be responsible for the employment and payment of all staff. You will ensure that there are sufficient staff at the correct times to meet the needs of the business. The staff are employees of you or your Limited Company and therefore you are responsible for staff training, paying them, keeping records and any legal requirements from the HMRC or other agencies.

Who will work out the staff payroll?

Your accountant can process payroll on your behalf or you can register direct with HMRC online payroll facility.

How much will I earn with the Operator Agreement?

Advocate Group will pay your limited Company a management fee which is a percentage of the sales, net of VAT. You will then be responsible for paying the staff.

Will I get support from Advocate?

Yes – you will have a designated Operations Manager to provide you with support, direction and guidance to help you operate the business, identify opportunities and maximise sales. You will normally expect to see your Operations Manager on a weekly basis.

You will be provided with all the appropriate marketing materials to promote the pubs offer in a professional manner.

Who sets selling prices in my pub?

You must complete regular pricing reviews of your competitors. You will discuss these with your Operations Manager and agree any price changes.

It is the aim to provide good value and service in the area. Pricing will always be competitive, and we will also aim to provide the best sports viewing, entertainment facilities and environment appropriate to your target market.

Who pays for Entertainment and Door Staff?

Subject to agreement with your Operations Manager that these costs are required, Advocate will pay for all entertainment and security. These costs are regularly reviewed and agreed with your Operations Manager.

Which costs am I responsible for?

You, via your limited company, are responsible for paying the staff costs. You are also responsible for Council Tax, insurance on your personal possessions and the TV licence for the private accommodation if applicable.

Who deals with repairs?

Advocate pubs is responsible for the maintenance of the property, including the accommodation.

Can I keep pets on the premises?

You may do so with specific consent from the company. The quality and standard of the private accommodation is important and regularly monitored by Advocate. Any damage or fouling by pets on the premises must be remedied immediately. Failure to do so will result in the withdrawal of consent.

Is the agreement for a fixed time period?

No, it is open ended. The agreement can be brought to an end by giving us a month’s notice, or two weeks’ notice from ourselves.

If you are happy with the answers to all these questions and you have the vision, drive and determination to shape your very own pub business we would be delighted to hear from you!