Small business owners across Europe and in the UK have long been calling for a simplification of business rules. Smaller firms in particular have openly voiced feeling unduly burdened by complicated bureaucratic regulations, so recent Government discussions around cutting down business red tape are likely to be welcomed by business owners, start-ups and entrepreneurs. For many small businesses, fitting in with the rules and regulations that govern virtually every part of company life can be a real headache.
The British Chambers of Commerce, which campaigns against excessive red tape, has estimated that the cost of compliance to UK firms of regulation introduced since 1998 has reached a staggering £77 billion. Relaxing rules such as allowing small companies to file simpler accounts at Companies House (previously compulsory annual audits cost up to £10,000) have made a huge difference to business owners and more of this type of legislation can only help to remove barriers that are currently regarded as hindering a small company’s ability to grow.
At Sage Group, we know from the findings of the Sage Business Index in September 2011 that the most burdensome legislation within government business bureaucracy at the time of the report were the tax laws, followed by procurement/licensing procedures. Today employment law has also made the news agenda with many proposed changes looking to give more flexibility to small firms employing less than ten firms.
The more the government can do to remove excessive rules and regulations affecting small firms the less it will cost them to be in business; this is money that can be used to create more jobs. Navigating the choppy waters of today’s economy relies on job creation and with nations looking to the SMB community to drive this, it’s of paramount importance that their lives be made easier by the state however small the concession.