If you had one wish as a small business owner, what would it be? Reduced tax rates? A way of combating late payments? A study conducted by Bibby Financial Services has revealed that most SMEs in the UK want a simplified payroll system. There were other significant findings from the study. Approximately 20 per cent of those interviewed stated that they wanted legislation put in place to end late payments by big companies while 30 per cent of small business owners said that their priorities would be a reduction in business tax rates. 30 per cent of SMEs also stated that over the next year one of their main hopes is to remain in the EU.
This study, which polled 1,000 SMEs in the United Kingdom, led to a manifesto. In this manifesto, SME owners have outlined all of their main priorities. It’s not hard to see why tax would be the main concern for so many of them, with many SMEs investing in quality chartered accountants or services like Square One to help them with this side of their business, as it can put a large financial strain on smaller companies. Not only are companies calling for a reduction in tax rates, but 23 per cent of SME owners have requested that there be a clearer outline of what taxes companies need to pay, as well as details regarding what is on the government’s agenda.
England’s future regarding EU status is undoubtedly a massive concern for small to medium size businesses. The uncertainty is assured to have an impact on confidence, which will, in turn, have a negative impact on economic growth. Businesses will be unsure of how to proceed going forward until they know about the future of the UK’s relationship with the EU.
Aside from the points that have already been mentioned, there were other major concerns for businesses. A lot of owners expressed their concerns regarding interest rates, stating that there was a need for some stability. Also, 27 per cent of those interviewed said they are looking for ways to help their business grow, which falls in line for the need to reduce the amount of tax they are subject too, as they feel this is really holding them back. Business owners have also expressed their desire for politicians to stop tinkering with the SME policy, with almost 50 per cent agreeing that they should let business owners get on with. 36 per cent of SME owners feel that politicians understand their needs, with the rest disagreeing.
All things considered, it remains to be seen how the government tackles the requests of SMEs in the country. This is imperative for the growth of the country, where small businesses require a stable environment if they are to flourish, but without certainty regarding the future of the UK in the EU, it’s difficult to provide this. If the government are to cater to the demands of SMEs, we can expect to see clarity on the tax regime and a reduction in business tax rates over the next five years.