Reverse Hybernation ...
Reverse Hybernation ...
I'm a civil PE who specializes in hydrology, and managed the stormwater department for a civil firm in the southeast who's primary business was in land development. Not a good place to be right now. We dropped from about 40 employees this time last year to down around 10 right now, and things look grim. I speculate that we won't last another two months, with our CEO's unwillingness to take drastic measures now (ditching the office / etc) necessary to keep us in the black.
So I'm looking for a Plan B, and I think I could probably make a pretty good living setting up my own business doing hydrology work outside of land development. I figure I could outsource to engineering firms who are in the "hold on by the skin of their teeth" phase and who would prefer to outsource hydrology than to maintain a hydrologist on staff. I figure I could pull similar work from municipalities who are making the same sort of cuts. I think I could pull in some LEED stuff, some FEMA work, and could also do drainage inspections on single family residential homes as they get flipped through foreclosure, since the buyer isn't going to want to buy a drainage nightmare. The nice thing about hydrology is it still rains during recession.
So my Plan B involves starting my own business. I've got the concept down, mission/vision/values, have investigated web development software, reserved my domain name, and am just today cutting my teeth on figuring out how LLCs work.
So .. reverse hybernation .. I'd like to set this thing up to have in my back pocket so if/when my current company folds I can turn it loose immediately, but I need some advice on which hoops I'll need to jump through to get it operational, and I can't ask my colleagues for obvious reasons.
Business plan - check
Marketing Website - check
Personal and professional contacts - check
LLC or S Corp? What's the easiest and most straightforward way to set one of those up? State is Georgia.
Professional Liability Insurance? How much do I really need? Where do I get it?
Contract labor? I hear vicious rumors that folks can easily outsource drafting to India ... where does one sign up for that kind of service?
Accounting software? I'm not an accountant, would it be better to outsource my accounting and taxes and whatnot to someone else, or try to wing it myself, and if the latter, what kind of software do I need to grab for it?
Any guidance would be greatly appreciated.