Over half of UK small businesses disillusioned with local and central government

Simply Business survey reports majority of small firms have found changes to export, childcare and employment laws have had no impact on their business

Over half of small firms feel misunderstood by the government with the majority believing that policy changes to exporting (81%), childcare (77%) and employment (69%) laws have made no difference, according to a new report.

Furthermore, 33% of micro businesses actually feel that policies have delayed their growth, with red tape policy named as the biggest hindrance (33%), followed by policy changes to energy prices and overheads (both 25%) and access to finance (21%).

The survey, titled Simply Britain Pulse Check, interviewed 2,000 sole traders and microbusiness owners and highlighted the top four obstacles faced by the small business community as well as key changes small and micro firms want to see. Petrol costs were ranked the highest barrier, before tax and business rates, red tape, and finally utility costs.

In regards to factors that businesses felt needed to change in order to increase their profitability; tax relief was the most popular, followed by energy process, employment law and environmental requirements.

The survey was released at the Simply Britain: Backing Business event in London City Hall today; where the organisation invited Lord Young of Graffham DL, enterprise adviser to the Prime Minister, along with other influencers and representatives of the small business community to debate on how to best help small and micro businesses.

CEO of Simply Business, Jason Stockwood, commented on the report – emphasising the importance of small and micro companies:

“Sole trader and microbusinesses are the very heart of the UK economy, and it is these firms that are driving the country back to growth. But these firms are not getting the support they need.

“The government is designing policies according to what it believes small businesses need, but because of the specific set of challenges and risks faced by sole traders and micro businesses, government support is passing them by.”

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