Jane Bennett, head of campaigns at the Forum of Private Business. Image courtesy of: fpb.org
A number of small business groups have banded together to lobby for a day to recognise the contributions of micro-businesses to UK economic recovery.
The Forum of Private Business
(FPB), The Business Woman’s Network
and business knowledge market Wanobe.com would like to see a day created to recognise the role of firms with fewer than 10 employees.
Jane Bennett, head of campaigns at the FPB, said: “The jobs that will drive economic growth are expected to be created in micro businesses, so it is important that we place the political spotlight squarely on them and make sure it stays there – that is why we are calling for a micro business day to highlight the crucial role played by the UK’s smaller businesses.
“It is time for the Government to stop talking micro and thinking macro and instead focus on the real issues of the smallest businesses.”
In August the British Chambers of Commerce
(BCC) highlighted a number of staffing issues affecting the growth prospects of micro-businesses
, including a lack of skilled school-leavers, burdensome rules surrounding dismissal, and changes to employment legislation.
A survey released recently points to late payment as a barrier to growth for smaller firms
. Payment provider Bacs revealed that late payments to SMEs had hit a record high, with the average amount owed at £39,000. Many firms are being forced to wait two months before payment is made.
“Late payment is a huge issue, particularly for small businesses. While it is pleasing that the smallest micro businesses seem to be leading the way in minimising the problem, others are less able to do so – perhaps because employment law bureaucracy means they simply have less time to chase outstanding payments,” added Bennett.
David Noble, managing director of Wanobe.com
, said: “A major problem facing the UK’s micro businesses is how to chase money owed to them without upsetting a customer relationship – and possibly losing business as a result.
“It is a dilemma micro businesses must solve every day, and their creativity and perseverance in dealing with such issues, which enables them to survive and retain employees, is what makes them the real heroes in our marketplace.”