The Government is taking action to tackle late payment issues for small businesses in the UK. The proposed appointment of a Commissioner is now underway with applications being welcomed.
The new role of Small Business Commissioner is expected to focus largely on tackling the huge problem of late payment matters.
It is expected that the role will be based in Birmingham and the Commissioner will hopefully champion the causes for small businesses across the country.
Recent reported findings from BACS reported that nearly 50% of UK Small Businesses are experiencing problems with late payment with over £26.3 billion pounds owed to them.
Applications for the position are now open and will the closing date is Monday 13th March 2017. The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial strategy is hoping the new position will attract candidates with huge credibility in the small business world. The ideal cadidate will also have experience of resolving business disputes and can act as a National spokesperson for late payment issues.
A panel will make the decision of who is to be appointed. The panel will include government business ministers and Mike Cherry, chairman of the Federation of Small businesses.
Margot James, Small Business minister said “We all rely on the UK’s 5.5 million small and medium sized businesses for jobs, goods and services, and an unfair payment culture that hurts these firms has no place in an economy that works for all”
Mike Cherry, head of the FSB was very pleased with the progress being made commenting “Small Firms need a commissioner who will make a meaningful difference to the £26 Billion currently stuck in bank accounts as payments outstanding to SME’s. He or she must be given the powers and resoruces to tackle this, to step in to save small firms whose livelihoods are under threat, and to promote a prompt payment culture right across the economy”
The news was also welcome by leading Small Business Debt Collection Agency Federal Management who advised they would support any new measures introduced to help tackle the growing problem.
This latest announcement is just one of a few new measures expected to be introducted to tackle the UK’s culture of late payment. New regulations to be introduced in April require large businesses to publically report their payment practices.