Here’s the #EurofficeSMEUpdate to keep you posted on developments on the small business front.
Automatic Pension Enrolment Deadlines
Starting this month, small businesses with 61 employees on PAYE will have to offer them a workplace pension.
There are different ‘staging’ dates for small businesses to comply with the rules; for example, SMEs with 50-53 employees need to enroll them in the scheme by April 2015. The Pensions Regulator has all the details and guidance for both employers and workers.
Banks Face New Rules on SME Finance
The Chancellor wants to force the big banks to redirect SMEs they have rejected for loans to alternative sources of finance. At the moment Britain’s four largest banks account for over 85% of current accounts and 90% of loans.
Now the Treasury plans to open up the market by asking banks to forward unsuccessful applicants to challenger banks, crowd-funders and P2P lenders. This strategy aims to boost financing for SMEs.
Skills Shortage Threatens Growth
Almost three-quarters of British businesses believe that the UK will be facing a skills crisis within the next three years, restricting economic growth, says a survey by The Prince’s Trust and HSBC. Even today, around a third (32%) of organisations say they have to deal with skills shortages at entry level.
The figures reveal the impact on both the business and the employees: increased employee stress (67%); low morale (64%) and inability to innovate (63%).
Credit Card Late Payment Costs SMEs Dear
Small businesses cope with late payment debt of £39.4 billion, while bigger companies are due only £6.7 billion at any one time, says BACs the company behind direct debit and credit card transactions.
On average, each SME waits for £38,186 in overdue payments. A quarter of SMEs believe that if this figure reached £50,000 it would tip them into #bankruptcy.