National Living Wage

A Quarter Of Businesses Put A Hold On Any Promotions In Order To Afford National Living Wage

A Quarter Of Businesses Put A Hold On Any Promotions In Order To Afford National Living Wage

A quarter of UK small businesses have put a hold on any employee promotions or pay rises because they can’t afford the national living wage – according to a report by XpertHR. The survey of 212 businesses and 541,340 employees has revealed that 30% of firms had to increase pay for at last some workers in April 2016 – when the minimum wage officially rose from £6.70 to £7.20. At the time of its introduction, workers eligible for the national living wage (who were previously on the national minimum wage for workers aged 21 and over) would have seen their pay increase from £6.70 to £7.20 an hour, an increase of approximately 7.5%. It’s suggested that many businesses failed to plan adequately, or even expect, the rise – and it now appears business owners are taking their financial frustrations... »

Government Names And Shames Underpaying Businesses

Government Names And Shames Underpaying Businesses

The government has named and shamed underpaying businesses by publishing a list of all firms who fail to pay workers the National Minimum Wage (NMW) and National Living Wage (NLW). The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has released a list of 359 businesses who underpaid 15,513 workers a total of £994,685. Offenders include kebab shops, nurseries, retail stores, football clubs and tradesmen with small businesses making up the bulk of the list. As well as recovering arrears for some of the UK’s lowest paid workers, HMRC issued penalties worth around £800,000. By law, adult workers aged 22 and over, except “accredited” trainees and some excluded groups, must be paid a NMW of at least £6.95 an hour – though this will increase from 1 April 2017. For the first time, ... »

Business Owners Increasingly Fear Losing Their Reputation

Business Owners Increasingly Fear Losing Their Reputation

The fear of their business losing its reputation, and being unable to regain it, tops the list of concerns for the country’s small enterprise owners – according to a report by Broker Network. The survey, which polled 538 UK small and medium business owners, revealed that 30% see threats to their company’s status as the biggest issue facing their business today particularly as it can be affected by things out of their control such as a courier failing to deliver on time. Many of the businesses surveyed said that online reputation was less of a worry than traditional word of mouth, despite the fact that online reputation is an important asset worth protecting. Arguably, negative comments posted online and on social media will reach more potential customers than a word-of mouth comment.... »

UK Businesses to be Hit with “£29bn in Extra Costs”

UK Businesses to be Hit with “£29bn in Extra Costs”

UK small businesses will be hit with over £29bn in extra costs following the introduction of new government policies, research by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) has claimed. The national living wage and apprenticeship levy are among new legislation which business owners believe will have a negative effect on small enterprises. The flagship schemes, being introduced in April 2016 and 2017 respectively, are said to cost British businesses around £9bn every year by 2020-21 when added to existing costs. The findings are a stark contrast to an earlier promise that the government would cut at least £10bn in red tape for small businesses over the next five years. Earlier this year, it was reported that small enterprises in Scotland and other lower paying areas would be the most affec... »

Small Businesses Now Rely on Flexible Workers to Fill Skills Gap

Small Businesses Now Rely on Flexible Workers to Fill Skills Gap

The majority of the UK’s small businesses now depend on flexible workers, including freelancers, project and part-time staff, to counter the UK’s skills shortage. According to research by Indeed, which featured 250 small and medium businesses, small business owners are also hiring flexible staff to help scale their business and expand – 44% of those surveyed see freelancers as a route to scale-up. Business owners are using freelance staff in order to compete with larger firms for talent as 39% said that giving the staff the option to work flexibly had helped them to attract skilled talent. However, the number of firms using flexible staff did vary according to region, with only 25% of companies in London using freelance staff – a stark contrast to 93% of small firms in the North West – sug... »