small businesses

Are SMEs prepared for changes in seasonal demand?

Fewer than four in 10 small business owners (37%) plan ahead during quieter business periods, according to a new report.

Research from Lloyds Bank has also found that almost one in four small business owners (23%) have not planned for quieter financial periods.

Almost a third of SMEs (31%) planned for the peak seasons up to three months in advance, while 16% don’t plan at all.

A further 13% admitted to not planning their finances well.

Some 15% of seasonal business owners admitted to lacking confidence that they would get their staffing levels right for peak seasons, while one in 10 were unsure of their staffing arrangements during off-peak seasons.

During off-peak seasons, 53% of SME owners said they used this time to catch up on business admin tasks, 51% carried out more business maintenance, while 47% opted to take more holidays during this time.

Only 20% of respondents said they used this time for professional development and more than one in 10 (12%) admitted to doing nothing in particular during business downtime.

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