Small firms in the dark over payments

30 October 2007
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30 October 2007 | Paul Snell

More than a third of small businesses do not know how much money they are owed, according to a study.

A survey of 1,479 companies by software firm KashFlow found 35 per cent of small firms did not know what they ought to be paid at any given time.

And just under half of SMEs, 46 per cent, said they have no way of tracking overdue invoices, or any system to alert them that an invoice is overdue.

Small firms also said it would take them an average of 2 hours 45 minutes to calculate how much they were owed, with 83 per cent adding they had no formal book-keeping training.

Duane Jackson, managing director of KashFlow, said the trend was worrying: "I was really shocked that in the 21st century more than a third of small business owners are saying they don't have a clue how much money they are owed."

A survey earlier this year found companies are now taking longer to settle bills than at any time since legislation was introduced in 1998 to stop late payment (Web news, 20 July).

SMoct2007

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