FSB has welcomed Government plans to extend the Help to Grow: Digital scheme to businesses with fewer than five employees.
FSB has been calling for the move, which will see digital support extended to all employers. It is hoped this will encourage small businesses to acquire the digital skills needed to help take advantage of new technology, and enhance productivity.
FSB National Chair Martin McTague said: “Until now, the majority of small businesses were arbitrarily excluded from the scheme due to the requirement to employ at least five employees.
“Many of them want to make productivity gains through technology adoption. However, they often do not have the resources to do so, especially when they are faced with steep inflation, soaring energy bills, supply chain disruption and a widespread labour shortage under the cost of doing business crisis.
“Reducing the threshold to one employee really makes a difference in this space. Together with the addition of ecommerce software and one-to-one advice for SMEs on technology adoption, this will enable more small businesses to fulfil their growth ambitions and in turn spur our economy.
“Research shows adopting relevant software for three years or more translates into higher sales per employee – the use of CRM boosts this by 18.4 per cent while adopting cloud-based computing means a 13.5 per cent increase. Ecommerce software also pushes sales per employee up by 7.5 per cent.
“We encourage small businesses to consider how best they can use this scheme, which will have real benefits for the way they conduct business.”