Small firms hampered by slow broadband speeds

Small firms complained of slow connections and online distractions
Small firms complained of slow connections and online distractions
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The typical small company in Scotland could be losing a day’s work each week because of slow internet connections, according to a new study.

A survey of more than 100 SMEs north of the Border found the average employee wastes 15 minutes every day because of poor broadband speeds.

That means a company with eight staff could lose a full working day every week while they wait for their internet connection to catch up.

The research, from Virgin Media Business, also found that 56 per cent of Scottish SMEs say they could not function without the internet, while 42 per cent believe a faster connection would help to accelerate their overall growth.

READ MORE: What areas of Scotland have the worst broadband speeds?

However, while slow internet speeds were cited by 35 per cent of small firms as the biggest time waster, browsing Facebook and other online distractions was the worst drain on productivity, with 41 per cent of respondents pointing the finger at procrastination.

The survey was conducted as Virgin Media Business launched four new broadband packages offering speeds of up to 300 megabits per second – which it said was almost four times faster than competitors.

Managing director Peter Kelly said: “Small businesses are the lifeblood of the UK’s economy but need the right tools and technology to thrive. Our ultrafast broadband speeds are setting a new benchmark for business broadband and enabling businesses to reach their full potential by doing more, faster.”