Broadband the key for British SMEs

Britain’s small and medium sized enterprises are hugely reliant on the internet, placing its importance above water, electricity and gas, according to a recent survey.


Some companies said they would soldier on even if the heating went off and the lights went out, according to XLN Telecom.


Nine of every ten small business owners, partners and directors interviewed said broadband was vital to the everyday running of their business.


When questioned regarding the importance of utilities, 85% said broadband was important, compared to only 50% who answered water.


Electricity was the second highest utility with 83% of the vote, while eight in ten said a telephone connection was a necessity.


Only 29% thought gas was important to their business.


Speeding up the process even more


Despite such a high proportion of companies highlighting broadband as being important to the running of the business, it seems SMEs are still on the hunt for superfast fibre broadband.


This comes despite recent government figures suggesting the UK’s average internet speeds are on the increase.


Only 56% of those questioned were happy with their current speed while two-thirds said they were likely to upgrade as soon as it was available in their area.


Meanwhile, only a quarter of those SMEs questioned said they had access to a fibre connection for faster internet.


With Chancellor George Osborne’s announcement that the economy in Britain is ‘turning a corner’ it is likely that the implementation of broadband services could occur on a massive scale.


Banking, customer service and supplier contact were listed as the top uses of broadband by the SMEs questioned.


Using it for research purposes and for marketing was also a major factor in the provision of many companies.


However, concerns were raised by founder and CEO of XLN Telecom, Christian Nelleman, due to the fact that infrastructure projects are struggling to meet deadlines.


“The nation’s superfast infrastructure project is already two years behind schedule and my concern is that, as it becomes increasingly complex, the interests of the small business – the backbone of the economy – could become lost,” he said.


A lack of broadband options could mean difficulty for some SMEs, meaning they require additional help and support in order to stay afloat and keep trading. A specialist business recovery service can help in these situations.


Business Recovery Specialists


Moorfields are specialists in providing leadership and high quality advice for distressed companies. We can seek practical solutions to genuine problems in this difficult financial period.


By Phil Smith

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