Half of SMEs put reducing red tape as top priority for new Government

05 June 2015

  • 51 per cent of small to medium sized businesses say new Government should cut red tape
  • Over two fifths are calling for better incentives to invest, while a third said that the skills gap needs urgent attention
  • Sectors which cited reducing red tape as their top priority included real estate and energy

British small businesses say reducing red tape and improving incentives for investment should be the top priorities for the new Government according to a new study from Lloyds Bank.

The findings show that over half of small to medium sized businesses (51 per cent) believe that reducing red tape should at the top of the to-do list for the new Government, while over two fifths (42 per cent) say that better incentives to invest are needed.

The third highest priority cited by businesses nationwide should be action to tackle the skills gap through more vocational education such as apprenticeships. 

The full results are below: 

Question: What should the new Government’s priorities be for SMEs?

  • Reducing red tape                                             51%
  • Better incentives to invest                                  42%
  • Improving access to the right skills                     31%
  • Tackling late payment and financial advice          24%
  • Opening up barriers to overseas trade                17%

Source: Data collected in April 2015 from over 1,500 respondents through BDRC Research Agency

Tim Hinton, Managing Director, Mid Markets and SME Banking, Lloyds Banking Group, said: “Small and medium sized businesses have clear views on what the new Government’s priorities should be, to help with their growth ambitions.

“Businesses have welcomed the Government’s recent commitment to cut red tape and they recognise it as a priority. However they will want reassurance that their concerns about skills, investment and exports will also be addressed.

“We are playing our part to help businesses to start up, expand and trade overseas – for example by increasing our net lending, trade finance support and by supporting the Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre – but it is clear that more can be done to give SMEs the confidence to invest for the long-term.”

Sector Picture

Sectors which cited reducing red tape as their top priority included real estate (60 per cent) and energy (57 per cent) compared with the national average of 51 per cent while improving access to skills was the top priority for the healthcare sector and public sector including education and charities.

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS

For more information contact Ed Smith, Media Relations Manager T: 0207 661 4936

Ed.Smith1@lloydsbanking.com   

The Business in Britain survey has been carried out twice a year since 1992. Responses from 1500 firms were collated in April 2015 by BDRC Continental.

-       65 per cent of the responses came from businesses with an annual turnover below £10 million
-       10 per cent of the responses came from businesses with an annual turnover between £10m and under £15million
-       26 per cent of the responses came from businesses with an annual turnover of over £15 million

The breakdown by sector is on the attachment.