SME election concerns revealed

Table of Contents

    Today is the UK General Election and, during the build up, we fielded research to find out more about what issues were the main concerns of UK businesses.

    Our findings revealed that as many as 41% of SMEs have concerns over the outcome of the election, with pensions, flexible working legislation and changes to the minimum wage the most common topics to be stimulating these concerns.

    What’s more, we found that these concerns are not uniform: a staggering 77% of business decision makers in the North East expressed concern, versus only 32% in London and 25% in Scotland.

    Other issues provoking apprehension included:
    • Pensions – 44%
    • Flexible working legislation – 38%
    • Minimum wage – 36%
    • Tax regulation – 32%
    • Maternity and paternity rights – 27%

    We also noted the size of the company in question also affects the issues they’re concerned with. The minimum wage might be a major concern for those who employ 50 or more people, but maternity and paternity rights were a much more important to SMEs with an annual turnover of more than £10m. Similarly, the smallest businesses in the UK may generally express concerns over pension provision, but tax regulations were clearly the primary concern for those with a turnover of less than £100,000.

    However, the result we found most concerning was that only 13% of respondents felt SMEs had benefited from the coalition government. With over five million SMEs in the UK employing 60% of the workforce, who generate close to 50% of the turnover of all private enterprise this affects millions.

    When asked to confirm who they believe has gained the most in the last five years, under the coalition government, big businesses came out on top by a large margin – 48%, with homeowners coming in second at only 25%.

    With only a quarter of business decision makers agreeing that policies and promises relating to their personal life will be the greatest influence on how they vote, it seems those political policies that impact upon businesses will likely play a significant role in determining today’s outcome.

    Happy Dashboarding!