SMEs forecast 1.2 million jobs to be created in the UK in the coming year

Originally written by Anna Jordan about Small Business

A third of SMEs are expected to hire in 2021, creating 1.2 million jobs in the UK.

Renewed optimism is the driving force behind these hiring plans, with the additional desire that SMBs increase their workforce diversity and prioritize employee wellbeing. In the UK, there will be a greater focus on the way people work and their wellbeing. 37 percent aim to improve their physical wellbeing.

According to research by Sage, companies expect to return to pre-pandemic profitability by the fourth quarter of 2021. This is due to increased consumer confidence and efficiency.

Three quarters of the SMEs surveyed are optimistic about the future of their business and the growth path in the coming year. That optimism is mainly due to the vaccine rollout program (45 percent), which allows seeing customers again (35 percent) and predictions of higher consumer spending (32 percent). Over eight in ten don’t expect another lockdown as most feel they’ll be back to pre-pandemic levels this summer – both in terms of profitability and headcount. 79 percent of UK SMEs believe they will be viable again by the summer.

The ability to adapt was crucial during the pandemic. Many (60 percent) SMEs state that they have mastered all the obstacles raised by Covid-19 well and have made appropriate changes. Over a third (35 percent) of UK SMEs said they were reducing overheads because of other financial barriers. 25 percent said they rely on their own savings to accomplish this.

More and more companies are turning to technology to increase efficiency. In the UK, 52 percent used new technology to sell more, stay connected with customers, or improve the way their business worked.

Steve Hare, CEO of Sage Group, commented, “As the economic environment improves, our customers are more optimistic and more confident about seizing the opportunities that lie ahead. SMBs are accelerating their investments in people and digital technology and value flexibility, resilience and productivity. This is a clear sign that they will get the economy going again and why they need to be at the center of all recovery plans.

“We need to make sure that this optimism has a chance to become a tidal wave of growth. We have sought support and investment from governments to accelerate the recovery of SMEs during these troubled times, and have made our own investments in supporting an SME-led recovery. “

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SMEs forecast 1.2 million jobs to be created in the UK in the coming year

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