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Large number of SMEs decide to furlough staff

Posted: 19/05/20 by Hawsons Chartered Accountants

Large number of SMEs decide to furlough staff

Latest Statistics show that over 70% of SMEs have furloughed staff.

The Chamber of Commerce has announced that over 70% of small and medium-sized businesses have furloughed at least some of their staff. These businesses are currently awaiting government funding from the Job Retention Scheme which is up to 80% of wages costs with a £2,500 monthly cap per employee. Survey results have shown that 71% of businesses furloughing staff has increased from the position last week of 66%, with 30% saying they have furloughed over 75% of their workforce.

When applications for the Job Retention Scheme opened, Chancellor Rishi Sunak said that in the first 8 hours they had registered over 1 million staff onto the scheme. However, Government budget forecasters have suggested that 30% of all employees could be registered on the scheme during a 3-month lockdown. Which would cost the Government an expected £42bn.

Official figures have suggested that 25% of businesses have stopped trading completely on a temporary basis. The remaining 75% of businesses have furloughed on average 20% of their staff as workloads decrease. The purpose of this scheme is to prevent the unemployment rate rising during this period, which we have seen in a number of countries around the world which could have long-lasting effects on the economic recovery. Additionally, it will enable businesses and employees to return to normality as quickly as possible once the pandemic is over.

How to apply for this scheme?

The government will require the employer’s “ePAYE” reference. You can then use the “PAYE Online for Employers” portal to make your claim. These login details should have been sent to you when you first started using PAYE.

It does not take long to apply for this service, but you will need authorisation codes which often take around 10 days to arrive. You will not be able to access the scheme without these details.

This information may change as the scheme is developed and Hawsons will let you know as soon as they know any new information.

To register for the scheme please follow this link: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wages-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

How can Hawsons help?

At Hawsons, they have a dedicated team of payroll staff at their offices covering Sheffield, Doncaster, and Northampton. Their experts can help you decide which government support scheme is best for you and your business.

If you would like advice for their experts please check out their website here: www.hawsons.co.uk

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