According to research by Direct Line for Business (“DL4B”), more than half (51 per cent) of small trade business owners and managers rely on spouses and partners to help run their company.
The research by DL4B revealed that 46 per cent of small trade business owners and key decision makers rely on their partners to carry out general business administration while one in five (19 per cent) employ their partner as a receptionist.
- Spouses and partners work on average two days a week and 31 percent are unpaid
- On average, spouses and partners began working at small business four and a half years ago
More than one in seven (14 per cent) trust their partners to look after legal and accounting services. A further 8 per cent of small trade business owners and key decision makers look to their partners to carry out sales, marketing and new business generation responsibilities.
|Responsibility||Number of partners taking on responsibility|
|General business administration||48 per cent|
|Receptionist||19 per cent|
|Legal and accounting services||14 per cent|
|Sales, marketing and new business generation||8 per cent|
|PA||7 per cent|
|IT||2 per cent|
Source – ICM interviewed a representative sample of tradespeople on behalf of DL4B
However despite small trade business owners and key decision makers suggesting their partners work on average two days a week (with one in four working three or more days a week), nearly a third (31 per cent) do not pay their partner any money at all.
This contribution is particularly apparent as DL4B’s research showed that on average, partners have been helping each other for over four and a half years. In addition, two in three (65 per cent) people who help out in their partner’s small trade businesses have other employment elsewhere. Of these, one in four (26 per cent) work full time and two in five (39 per cent) work part time at another business.
Jazz Gakhal, Head of Direct Line for Business commented:
[quote]“Small businesses are crucial in re-energising the UK economy. It is therefore, heartening to see partners working together to help sustain these small companies despite not being fully financially compensated and in many cases not paid at all. It is clear that small trade businesses are seeking voluntary help from their partners to avoid high legal, secretarial or IT support fees but it is vital that these businesses ensure their partners are adequately covered in event of an accident.”[/quote]
The research by DL4B looked at small trade businesses employing less than five people with an average annual turnover of around £124,000.
Launched in 2007 Direct Line for Business provides a range of insurance products for the small business sector direct by phone or on-line. Direct Line for Business general insurance policies are underwritten by U K Insurance Limited, Registered office: The Wharf, Neville Street, Leeds LS1 4AZ. Registered in England and Wales no 1179980. U K Insurance Limited are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.
Direct Line for Business and UK Insurance limited are both part of Direct Line Insurance Group plc, which is wholly owned by the Royal Bank of Scotland Group. Customers can find out more about Direct Line for Business products or get a quote by calling 0845 301 4827 or visiting www.directline.com