max temp: 8°C

min temp: 7°C


Suffolk Coastal: Recruitment difficulties ‘a major barrier to growth’ for SMEs

06:00 07 February 2014

Jenny Stockman.

Jenny Stockman.


Difficulty recruiting good staff locally is one of the main barriers to growth for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), according to a study of businesses in Suffolk Coastal.


A survey found widespread desire for rural economic growth among VAT registered firms in the district, which at last count numbered 4,760, compared to 3,035 Ipswich borough.

But business leaders stressed the need for greater acknowledgement and attention on SMEs to overcome barriers like access to finance, ability to recruit good staff locally, and availability of high speed broadband.

Jenny Stockman, chairman of Heritage Coast Market Towns Initiative (HCMTI), which conducted the survey, said that with the introduction of New Anglia LEP’s Growth Fund, and the Growth Hubs being facilitated by the ‘City Deal’, there was hope of addressing the issues.

Funding worth £3.9m, secured through the City Deal, will be used to help create a Growth Hub service in 2014, with the aim of providing better access to national and local support for rural and urban businesses and entrepreneurs across Suffolk and Norfolk. It is hoped that more than 1,000 businesses will receive support, and that more than 200 new start-ups will be created in the two counties.

Mrs Stockman said: “Growing the economy in Suffolk depends upon the prosperity and growth of our businesses. To help them grow sustainably, be more resilient and capitalise upon opportunities to expand, existing businesses and potential entrepreneurs need access to the right kind of advice and support.”

Business support has been identified as one of the main enablers of growth in Suffolk, along with development of a local skills system that is responsive to employers’ needs.

HCMTI, Suffolk Business Hub, business associations and sites like Framlingham Technology Centre are working with partners to deliver training, influence broadband delivery, promote apprenticeships, source finance and facilitate networking.

The Suffolk Business Hub’s free Ready for Business event, at Framlingham Technology Centre on March 21, is set to bring together support providers who will have a leading role in establishing and operating the Growth Hub. More details at suffolkbusinesshub.co.uk.



South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court

A teenager must pay nearly £300 in fines and court costs after admitting being drunk and disorderly in Kesgrave.

Ipswich Park and Ride. Martlesham.

The two remaining park and ride sites in Ipswich could close in three years’ time if there is not a substantial increase in the number of motorists using them.

Doors reopen on the new look East of England Co-op Daily store in Woodbridge Thoroughfare. Staff members, left to right, Chloe Williams, James Buckles, Shirley Pierce.

Shoppers were greeted by the sight of a new-look Co-op on their high street yesterday, when a Suffolk branch of the store reopened following three weeks of refurbishment.

HGV drink-driver in court

A lorry driver carrying a trailer full of wine has admitted dangerous driving when weaving between lanes on the A14 while three times over the drink-drive limit.

Dan Poulter with Lord Robert Winston

ES 18.3.11

Suffolk County Council’s cabinet training day at Elstree film studios in Hertfordshire has come under fire from Conservative MP and former minister Dr Dan Poulter.

Childhood obesity figures revealed

One in 10 Suffolk children will become obese or overweight before leaving primary school, new figures have revealed.

Grimwade street fire. Ipswich

Firefighters saved the life of a man when they rescued him from a Ipswich house blaze without wearing breathing apparatus.

Official opening of Chantry Academy. Head boy and girl, left to right, Ligita Lazdauskaite and Joshua Clarke.

Chantry Academy in Ipswich celebrated the grand opening of its new school building on Friday, as the school marks a “fresh start” from a difficult year.

St Peter and St Mary's Church, Stowmarket, celebrates the opening of its Christmas tree festival. Pictured: Harry and Elena Brown.

The festive season officially arrived in Stowmarket tonight as the town celebrated the launch of its annual Christmas tree festival and lights switch-on.

Exercise is important in the battle against SAD

Seasonal Affective Disorder – or SAD – is a very real yet little understood condition that haunts millions every winter.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Suffolk's trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the Ipswich Star e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24