Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 7°C

min temp: 5°C

Search

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

06:00 07 February 2014

Jenny Stockman.

Jenny Stockman.

Archant

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.

0 comments

Members of Suffolk County Council are expected to call for Network Rail to invest heavily in the region’s railways following the start of the new Greater Anglia franchise.

The train lines from London to Ipswich have now reopened after a man was hit and killed by a train between Colchester and Manningtree earlier today.

An Ipswich Burger King franchisee must pay out nearly £180,000 for health and safety breaches before and after a worker was scalded with hot oil.

Two fire engines have been called to Upper Brook Street this afternoon after reports people could smell petrol in the area.

A motorcyclist is reported to have suffered a leg injury after a collision in Ipswich at 2.35pm today.

Through our iwitness24 site, readers are able to share their photos of Suffolk’s top beauty spots, of landmarks and of some of our amazing wildlife in action.

Our judging panel put Christmas food from the supermarkets to the test.

The death of a “kind, caring” mother signals the end of an era in Suffolk, her eldest son has said.

From children’s books and Lego, to slippers and jigsaws, let’s help give every patient at Ipswich Hospital a present this Christmas.

Photographers have turned their focus on texture this week for our iwitness challenge.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

MyDate24 MyPhotos24