Small Businesses Waste Four Days a Month Dealing With Red Tape

Two-thirds of small enterprise owners say administrative burdens are preventing them from focusing on their primary purpose

Small Businesses Waste Four Days a Month Dealing With Red Tape

Over half of all small business owners admit red tape is restricting their growth with enterprises wasting four days a month dealing with compulsory administrative work, according to a report from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

The survey revealed that two-thirds of smaller businesses say administrative burdens are preventing them from focusing on their primary purpose with three-quarters of business owners spending more time than they would like on business compliance.

Worryingly, the figures suggest that red tape is not just costing businesses time, but also money, as smaller firms spend an average £3,600 on tax compliance advice.

Other overly- bureaucratic barriers to growth include issues around employment laws, insurance, workplace pensions, accounting tasks and health and safety regulations.

More than three-fifths of respondents claimed they would spend more time on sales or sales development if they had less admin responsibilities with nearly half saying they would hire external advisors to help them if they could afford to – with the average small business paying £14,000 a year for the privilege.

Dave Stallon, commercial director at FSB, said:

“The government has pledged to remove £10bn worth of red tape over the course of this parliament. FSB welcomes this focus on deregulation, which should free up small business owners to spend more time doing business and creating economic growth.

“Initiatives like the Cutting Red Tape programme, the ‘one-in-three-out’ approach to new regulations, and steps to boost the Regulatory Policy Committee are all moves in the right direction.”

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