We are experiencing probably the toughest year most of us have known in our business lives.
Thankfully, there has been support available to help us through the crisis. On 24th September Rishi announced further measures of support including:
- a new job support scheme;
- an extension to the self-employment income support scheme;
- an extension to the repayment period for bounce back loans;
- the extension of the 5% VAT rate for the hospitality and tourism sectors; and
- an extension of repayment terms for those that deferred their VAT bills and for self-assessment income taxpayers who need more time to pay.
We welcome the latest measures. The Chancellor has shown he is prepared to “think outside the box”.
These measures will ease some of the impact on cashflow, but SMEs still need to take certain actions and focus on a number of areas to protect their cash, their people and their customers.
In August and the first half of September (pre- the new measures announced by Boris and Rishi) we asked SMEs across the UK to share their outlook for the next 12 months. The findings make for interesting reading – including:
- 61% of SMEs are expecting their revenue to drop over the next 12 months;
- One third (32%) expect to make redundancies; and
- Looking after existing clients, finding new clients and survival are the 3 biggest priorities for SMEs.
Below you can find a full copy of the tracker polls results together with our observations and some practical steps and actions you can take in our SME Outlook Tracker Report.