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Small businesses fear implications of employment bill

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A survey carried out by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) has found that thousands of small firms already coping with heavy red tape burdens are concerned about the impact of the forthcoming Employment Bill, due to come into effect next year.

Provisions of the Bill include the removal of the exemption which currently excludes employers with fewer than 20 employees from having to provide formal disciplinary and dismissal procedures for employees.

The ACCA Small Business survey has revealed that 66% of the 1169 respondents who were questioned consider that the Bill will severely exacerbate red tape burdens on small firms.

Victoria Jonson, of ACCA’s Small Business Unit, said: “This survey illustrates the level of business opposition to further employment legislation.”

“Overburdening British companies with yet more red tape will harm competitiveness, which at best reduces the willingness of employers to take on new staff and at worst, leads to job losses. The Government’s Regulatory Reform Act 2001 was introduced this time last year to help reduce bureaucratic burdens on all businesses. However, despite the rhetoric, the Government still places more and more regulations on the smallest businesses which are least able to cope.” Victoria Jonson added.

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