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At the same time, the National Minimum Wage will also see increases of up to 10% across its three tiers:
Though the extra pennies and pounds will undoubtedly make a big difference to employees around the country who have been struggling to keep pace with the cost of living, April may herald bumpy times ahead for businesses that need to find the money to boost wages whilst remaining profitable.
One survey conducted in November by Novuna Business Finance suggested that nine in ten British small business owners were already concerned about the rising cost of living; facing increases in third-party supplier costs, rent and potential loss in footfall as customers tighten their budgets. The rising National Living Wage adds yet another cost to businesses, and many are concerned about how to absorb these costs and remain operational.
Our Legal Assistance Helpline has already received calls from many small business owners seeking guidance on the legal aspects of managing increases in the cost of staffing. Many of these callers, particularly nursery owners and childminders, know they’ll have pass on these increased costs to their customers, but some want to better understand the law around reducing employees’ hours or in the worst cases, making staff redundant.
As we venture into 2023, I predict more challenges ahead for small businesses. Continued inflation and sustained economic turbulence will continue to squeeze businesses already struggling to manage costs. We’re likely to see an increase in calls from policyholders seeking support on managing redundancies, and changes to employee contracts.
Though we can’t provide economic advice on how to run a business, our Legal Assistance Helpline, manned by our legally trained experts, is available 365 days, 24/7, to assist our policyholders navigate the complexities of employment law, along with support on any personal or commercial legal problems, depending on the scheme access.
For further information on the above, or details of our products and services, please contact your Partnerships Manager or email [email protected].