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A recent survey has revealed that many small businesses believe a lack of skilled staff will prevent them from further growth over the coming year.

This is according to the latest Small Business Index (SMI), conducted by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

The findings show that skills shortages are an issue for numerous sectors, including construction, manufacturing, information and communication and retail.

The FSB is suggesting that in order to make it easier for SMEs to upskill, the government should:

  • Ensure all schools can provide GCSE and A-Level computer science or ICT courses.
  • Ensure skills bootcamps (used by 76% of small firms) continue to play an important role in helping increase digital skills.
  • Continue to cover 95% of apprentice training costs for small businesses hiring apprentices, easing the upskilling process, and offering incentives for growth.
  • Make training in new skills tax deductible for the self-employed, allowing them to pivot into new areas of business.

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FSB Policy and Advocacy Chair Tina McKenzie, commented, “Small businesses are eager to grow but many find themselves at a standstill, with skills shortages putting a brake on their ambitions. At a time when the economy needs it the most, firms are left hamstrung.

“This impact is especially sharp in construction, where small housebuilders are instrumental. As we shift to the digital age, too, it’s essential to support the self-employed to branch out and upskill without being held back by the tax system.

“One of the main things we hear from our members is how difficult it is to recruit at all skills levels, which is why we need to invest in lifelong learning.  This cannot happen overnight but will unfold over time and needs supply-side reforms to make it work.

“The future of our economy relies on skills. Unless we create pathways for small businesses to tap into a readily available talent pool, the economy is at risk. This is more than just patching over a hole in the ceiling – it’s about empowering a workforce that can propel the economy forward.”

To find out more about contracting please contact Jaime on 01442 795 100 or email

Why Thousands of Contractors Choose Dolan Accountancy

With over 25 years experience in contractor accountancy helping thousands of contractors, freelancers and the self employed, Dolan Accountancy has the specialist skills, reputation and credibility you can trust.

Working closely with our sister company, Contractor Umbrella, it means we can offer one low cost, fixed fee package at £105 + VAT. This gives you the flexibility of using both our Limited Company Accountancy Services and our award winning Umbrella Service, for one inclusive cost.

If you’d like to find out more about how Dolan Accountancy can help you and your business, please give us a call on 01442 795 100 or email or

We don’t believe in tiered packages or hidden extra fees, instead we aim to give you everything you need, including:

  • Free Company Formation – This is where it all begins. Once you have decided on an available name, we will form your company free of charge (if using our accountancy services) and it will be ready for you to use in as little as three hours
  • Free use of Contractor Umbrella – With IR35 Legislation changes we understand that sometimes you are required to contract via an umbrella company. We will keep your limited company ticking over, while you work margin free via our sister company, Contractor Umbrella
  • A Dedicated Accountant – Your accountant will be there for any company or personal tax advice that you require. We will never outsource work, even to internal teams
  • Free Access to FreeAgent – We offer all of our clients access to FreeAgent, free of charge
  • Free Business Banking – We have decided to waive our commission so our clients can use Tide free of charge for the first year
  • Unlimited IR35 Status Reviews – We will review all of your contracts for IR35 purposes and provide you with our professional opinion as to its status
  • Free Registered and Director’s Service Office Address – Sometimes you just don’t want your home address on display at Companies House. When you sign up to our accountancy services, we will offer the use of our address as an alternative
  • Your Business and Personal Taxation Needs – This includes Company Accounts, Director’s Personal Tax Return, VAT Returns, Payroll, Corporation Tax and Dividend advice, to name just a few

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