Despite the Government’s promise to make a “bonfire of red tape”, a new study has found that over half of smaller business owners say their firm’s growth is being held back by the amount of time they have to spend on admin.

According to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), which undertook the research, a small business owner spends over 33 hours every month on internal business administration, which represents almost a quarter of an individual’s working hours. In addition, the average small business sees around 70 hours of employee time tied up in business admin alone.

Meanwhile, two-thirds of smaller businesses say the administrative burden is preventing them from focusing on their business’ primary purpose. The study revealed that three-quarters of business owners spend more time than they would like on business compliance, tackling issues ranging from tax, employment law issues and insurance to dealing with workplace pensions, accounting tasks or health and safety issues.

However, admin is not just a burden on time; it can also have a major cost implication.

A spokesman for the FSB said that the Government has pledged to remove £10bn worth of red tape over the course of this Parliament, which should free up small business owners to spend more time doing business and creating economic growth. He added that initiatives like The Red Tape challenge, the ‘one in, two out’ approach to new regulations and steps to boost the regulatory Policy Committee are all moves in the right direction.

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Glazers is a well-established and progressive firm of accountants based in North West London.

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