£2million fund to boost productivity and tackle late payments

The Government is giving £2million to projects to test innovative ways for SMEs to be more productive through accountancy and HR management technology.

Up to half of the funding pot (£1million) is specifically targeted to encourage businesses to use technology to simplify invoicing, payment and credit management to ensure they work as effectively as possible as part of the Government’s broad package of measures to end the culture of late payments.

Funding comes from the £9m Business Basics programme, which has been running since 2018, with 26 projects backed so far to run trials and develop ideas to encourage SMEs to use technology and more efficient management practices.

The 12 winners of the second round of the fund announced today include Cambridge Judge Business School; the Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council; Northumbria University; and Tenshi Consulting Ltd.

Funding has been awarded to explore online networking, gaming and innovative coaching techniques and they share £2million from the Government’s Business Basics Fund in a move to boost business productivity.

Small Business Minister Kelly Tolhurst said: “As a former small business owner, I know how important it is to harness technology to make your business more productive. This is why we’re awarding another £2million from our Business Basics Fund and backing 12 more exciting new projects to develop their innovative ideas. 

“I am particularly pleased that we are making up to £1million available to target the issue of late payments, which I know can have a real negative impact on SMEs and their cash flow. I look forward to seeing the innovative ideas that this Fund competition produces.

“Research shows that boosting productivity could unlock £100billion for the economy, and helping small businesses make better use of technology will enable them to seize the opportunities of scaling up in new markets when we leave the EU.”

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