SMEs warned to keep an eye on spending

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SMALL businesses are failing to review and cut their costs regularly enough, according to new research by Yorkshire Bank.

The survey shows that more than half of SMEs go at least six months without reviewing costs, while 14 per cent never review their outgoings at all.

Micro-businesses, with fewer than 10 employees, were found to be the most likely to review costs, with nearly one in four doing so at least once a month. Sole traders, by contrast, were the least likely to try to make savings, with 33 per cent never reviewing their expenditure.

Yorkshire Bank’s east region director Alan Young said: “It is quite surprising to discover that so many UK SMEs are not looking at their key costs regularly – meaning they could be spending money they don’t need to.

“By identifying the biggest costs within a business and planning to reduce these where possible, owners will be giving their business the best chance to remain competitive in a challenging economic climate.”

Mr Young recommended looking at spending on materials and trying to find discounts, as well as considering moving to new premises which better suit the business’s needs and offer a chance to negotiate on the rent.