Small businesses can be the driving force behind long-term economic prosperity, so we wanted to discover exactly what small businesses want from the upcoming UK Budget announcement on 18th March 2015.
In collaboration with YouGov, we surveyed 818 senior decision makers from small businesses, asking them what they wanted to see from Budget 2015. The results – ranked in order of demand – are both insightful and point firmly towards a number of key issues for the Government to address.
1. Further Corporation Tax relief for small businesses and start-ups
20% of senior decision makers surveyed would like to see Corporation Tax breaks for small businesses. The majority of these respondents were from businesses with turnover of under £1m. This matches anecdotal commentary from survey respondents who suggested they’d like to see a complete abolishment of business rates for companies with annual turnover under £800k.
2. More straightforward tax
19% of respondents – with the highest number of these working at the coalface of the issue in finance and accounting – would like to see HMRC tackle the issue of tax returns.
3. Late payments support
11% of respondents want more support for small businesses by enforcing stronger penalties for late payments, especially payment tardiness from large organisations. The highest numbers of these respondents were from North-West England.
4. Business specific tax rates (e.g. Government tax initiatives that relate to turnover, profit, number of employees etc.)
9% of respondents are keen for the Government to implement business specific tax rates. Small businesses across the UK are all taxed at the same rate; however a large number of senior decision makers in these companies would like tax to be based on turnover, profit and other key metrics such as employee numbers.
5. Reallocating unemployment benefits to reward those who are self-employed/ are growing a small sized business
6% of senior decision makers would like to see the Government reward entrepreneurs and the self-employed with benefits that currently go to the unemployed – rewarding the people who create jobs and opportunities for others.
6. A three way tie
In joint sixth place with 4% each of the votes, respondents said they would like to see the Government:
- Make staff hire more cost efficient (e.g. making recruitment of graduates/ apprentices more affordable)
- Provide more support for business education of young people/ apprentices
- Facilitate easier access to finance (e.g. grants, loans etc.)
9. More government support for UK exporters
The final topic that small business decision makers would like more Government initiatives to cater for, is additional support for UK exporters, citing demand for more streamlined regulation and tax credits, guidance and mentoring.
So there we have it, a comprehensive insight into the current wants of small business decision makers across the UK, regarding their hopes for Budget 2015. We now await the big announcement on 18th March, as we look forward to some positive initiatives and support to boost small businesses across the nation.
Would you add any to the list? We’d love to hear your views, so please tweet us with your ideas to @Flexioffices and we’ll retweet them with our followers.
N.B. 15% of respondents answered ‘don’t know’ and 6% of respondents answered ‘other’, of which numbers were nominal and therefore not statistically representative and valid for call-out.