Rising inflation has already cost UK SMEs an average of £186,249 each, according to a landmark national survey published today by Fiverr.
The study – conducted among 1,000 SME owners and decision-makers across the UK – found that 85% of UK businesses say their businesses have lost money in recent months due to rising inflation and the rising cost of living.
As a result, more than 1 in 5 small business owners (22%) say they have received requests for a pay rise from their staff, 21% are experiencing longer working hours and 24% cite a drop in morale.
Despite the bleak economic outlook, 56% feel optimistic about the future of their business. And to weather the storm, 29% plan to implement more remote/hybrid options to accommodate less overhead and physical costs and 34% are putting better measures in place to prepare for future surges. inflation.
Among the hardest hit industries are arts and culture with an average loss per business of £280,790, human resources (£254,107) and architecture, engineering and construction (loss of £244,104).
50% of businesses blame the UK government for being unprepared for rising inflation and 23% plan to cut staff to mitigate rising costs.
With permanent headcount reductions, 1 in 4 SMB executives say they have turned to freelancers to fill talent gaps during peak periods.
Peggy de Lange, Vice President of International Expansion at Fiverr, said: “UK businesses have proven their resilience over the past two years, but the cost of living crisis has undeniably been another hurdle in the way. of the recovery.
“Changes in workforces and work arrangements are unfortunately a necessary evil during times of cost reduction, but business leaders must continue to support their staff to ensure that issues such as declining morale and the longer hours don’t turn into something more serious like burnout.
“So it’s encouraging to see savvy business owners turning to support like the freelancers to fill in the gaps during peak times.”