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Business (HE): Keeping up-to-date

Current Awareness

Current awareness means keeping up-to-date with developments in your area of interest.  It is important for business students to be aware of changes in markets, particular industries, the economy, and in the wider business environment.  You can select sources for current awareness that can provide you with the latest financial news, update you on employment law and HR practices, get alerts when a certain company is mentioned in a journal article or the press, or just get a general business news email from an organisation like the BBC or a national newspaper.  Below are some selected Current Awareness sources for you to try.

Academic Current Awareness

If there is a particular topic that you are interested in, rather than repeat your search each week to view new content, you can set up daily, weekly or monthly alerts with a database to automatically run the search and email you if anything has been published since the last alert.  If your lecturer has advised you to look at a particular journal, set up a table of contents alert (TOC) to see what has been published in the most recent edition. 

Commercial Awareness

Employers want to see applicants who can demonstrate an awareness of the business environment. This means being aware of the company's aims and mission, the market, competitors, and wider political and economic issues.  Keep informed by using the key tools below. 

Social Media Sites

Use Social Media sites such as Twitter to get the latest information from organisations and companies, leading figures in your area, and the latest news, reports and research.  See who other people are following to build up your own network.  Here are some suggested Twitter accounts to follow:

BBC Business @BBCBusiness

CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) @CIPD

CBI (Confederation of British Industry) @CBItweets

Department for BEIS (Business, Energy, Information and Skills) @BEISgovuk

Financial Times @FT

TUC Press office @TUCNews

Business Media pages and blogs

Most business newspapers and magazines have websites where you can sign up for daily or weekly emails with the latest news and content.

The Economist - selection of articles emailed weekly - sign up to read articles online

First FT - daily email

IC Daily - daily investment news

Marketing Week newsletter - sign up for information from the marketing industry

PM Daily - free weekly newsletter with the latest HR news and jobs


There are many apps available to keep you easily up-to-date on the latest business news and current affairs.  Here is a selection of apps you could use: search on your App store to download.

BBC News –breaking news & videos

Bloomberg – latest Financial & Market News 

Economist – access to the best articles of the week.

Feedly – news aggregator compiling feeds from your selected online sources.

Financial Times – global news, video, comment and analysis.

Linkedin Pulse – personalised business news digest: log in with your LinkedIn account.

RSS Feeds

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary but can also be described as a newsfeed that you subscribe to. 

An RSS feed is an easy way for you to keep up-to-date with your favourite websites, journals, blogs, and social media services. 

To do this you will need a RSS Reader, such as Feedly or Bloglines, or RSS Feed Readers in IE and Chrome, that automatically update you when new content is available.

Current Awareness in the Library

The library takes a selection of daily newspapers which include the latest business and politics news.  Flick through the Telegraph and Argus for local information at the library counter, or read the national newspapers such as The Guardian, FInancial Times, or The Times online via our newspaper database. 

Browse our magazines: Winning Edge includes the latest in Marketing news and stories, or read Accounting for the latest information from the Institute of Chartered Accountants.

To keep up to date with the library, keep an eye on our blog, Twitter account and Facebook page for the latest library information and news stories that have caught our attention!


You will be familiar with using databases to find the latest journal articles on your topic.  Did you know that you can also set up alerts that will run these searches automatically, emailing you the results on a daily, weekly or monthly basis? Even better, where the database provides the full text, you will be able to access the article from a link in the email. 

Use Discover to search all the main Business and Service Management databases - here's how to set up an alert in 4 easy steps:  

  1. Once you had created a search you are happy with, click on the Create Alert button next to the search fields and fill in the form. 
  2. Enter your email address, check the Frequency (how often you want to receive emails - eg. daily, weekly or monthly), and decide if you want brief results in the email, or more detail.
  3. Click on the Save Alert bottom at the bottom of the form. 
  4. Log in again to delete your search alert once you have finished your assignment, or edit it if you want to change the email or frequency.

‚ÄčThis Search Alert will search across all the library databases which are included in Discover,including Emerald and Business Source Premier.  You can also set alerts within individual databases if you prefer.

Search Alert on Emerald

For Emerald, click on 'Register' to create your profile.  'Your Profile' provides space that will enable you to save search alerts, subscribe to alerts such as table of contents for your favourite journals or to weekly digests for all journal issues.

Table of Contents (TOC) Alerts

Many academic journals allow you to register your details so that you are automatically sent the table of contents (TOC) by email when new issues are published.  If we subscribe to the journal, you can usually link directly to the full text of the article.  Search using a web browser for the page of your favourite journal and look for links to TOC alerts.

You can also set up journal alerts from library databases such as SportDiscus, Hospitality and Tourism Complete, Emerald and Business Source Premier.  These will automatically notify you each time a new issue is available.  

Click on the publications link at the top of the page, find your publication and click on the title.  You will see a button called Share – click on that and choose Email Alert.  You will need to register or sign in.   For Emerald, click on Journals & Books and find the journal title, click on the link and then select ToC Alert.  Again you will need to register to access this feature.


Browse databases

Rather than search for a particular topic, you may just want to browse the newest articles or reports.   For Emerald, click on your subject area on the home page and you can view either the Most Recent or the Most Read articles in your area.