With just one day to go before the General Election, what do the various manifestos propose for our valuable SMEs? What are the promises and where will it all lead?
From the creation of the Small Business Association to the crackdown on poor payments by big companies being proposed at least one thing is for sure there appears to be a realisation that SME’s play a vital role to the economy.
However, research recently compiled by click data indicates that 41% of SME leaders are concerned about what the election will bring.
Labour is proposing to increase the minimum wage to £8.00 per hour, which will undoubtedly have an effect on SME’s, particularly those employing 50 staff or more.
What about better access to finance for SMEs to maintain stability?
All too often we see SME’s becoming particularly nervous pre-election with many adopting a ‘stick in the mud’ attitude, acting with caution and waiting to see how it all pans out. Certainly many will refrain from entering into new finance commitments until well beyond the election outcome.
Cutting red tape and a revised business rates regime are still top of the list according to many of my SME clients.
Both of the above feature in the Conservative manifesto indeed it has been reported that nearly 500 SME owners in the Midlands will back the Tories, believing the party will then be given an opportunity to continue with their plans since coming into power.
Business rates are a common theme in the Liberal Democrats manifesto too.
Labour feature tax cuts, HMRC review, and energy cutting costs amongst others as part of their manifesto.
Whatever the outcome the new Government must seize the opportunity to improve current conditions for SMEs in whatever way they can to assist and enable them to flourish and grow.