Figures show importance of small firms

HMS Victory and the Mary Rose Museum from the air     Picture: Shaun Roster

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NEW findings from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) show just how vital small firms are to the recovery, as almost nine in 10 of unemployed people that find jobs in the private sector either start or work for them.

Data tracked since the onset of the recession in 2008 shows that 88 per cent found work in a small business: a quarter – 24 per cent – worked in a micro businesses, 27 per cent with a small firm and 17 per cent started their own business. Although there have been signs of a marked improvement in the labour market in recent months, levels of joblessness are still stubbornly high.

The FSB says its new research demonstrates that small firms are vital to reducing unemployment and need to be supported.

As a result, the FSB is calling for the government to urgently review its current National Insurance Contributions holiday to allow more small firms to take on staff. The organisation believes that by allowing more small businesses to take advantage of the scheme, more jobs could be created.

Crucially, these could be full-time jobs at a time when many people are taking on part-time work.

Neil Eames, of the FSB Wessex Region, said: ‘The numbers speak for themselves – small firms are responsible for creating the majority of local jobs and are more likely to take on people out of work, including those that have been out of work for some time.’