Jobs warning as owner managed businesses struggle to come out of lockdown

Owner managed businesses are struggling to come out of lockdown with about one in ten likely to axe jobs in the next three to six months, a report today suggests.

Research conducted among more than 400 owner managed businesses across the UK found that 15 per cent remain in “survival mode”, despite the easing of many Covid restrictions.

APA, a network of 17 advisory firms which represent about 14,000 of these businesses, said 53 per cent of respondents identified uncertain trading conditions as their biggest single challenge.

About 24 per cent reported a negative or very negative impact on their business since the UK left the EU, while 15 per cent cited Brexit supply chain issues as their biggest challenge.

Many businesses have failed to survive the lockdown restrictions.

The report noted that with 11 per cent of businesses saying they were likely to have to make redundancies in the next three to six months, a potential 1.85 million jobs were at risk across the UK.

APA chairman Martin Muirhead said: “What is clear from our research is that a significant minority of owner managed businesses who have managed to pull through the last 12 months are still in survival mode with uncertain trading conditions being the biggest concern to a majority.

“Over the coming months it is vital that government maintains a flexible and targeted approach to business support focusing resource on those sectors where there is the greatest need.

“Owner managed businesses form the backbone of the UK economy and need continued, targeted support as we emerge from this third lockdown.”

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