SMEs urged to have winter weather contingency plans

The Forum for Private Businesses (FPB) has advised small businesses to plan ahead for cold winter weather that has a high potential to impact their business.

The organisation stated that SMEs in particular are likely to be vulnerable the way that freak weather can impact them and that YouGov figures reveal that when there are heavy snowfalls about a third of SMEs experience problems as a result. Overall, 13% of SMEs classify their bad weather problems as serious.

Spokesman for the Forum, Robert Downes, stated that disruptive weather such as very cold temperatures and heavy snow can hamper deliveries, cause power failures, and disrupt heating facilities. All of these factors can also make it impossible for employees to get to work creating more problems for SMEs.

Downes went on to explain that winters in the past have shown that the UK is very susceptible to receive extreme weather during the winter months and business costs can overall quickly run well into the millions.

When the overall business infrastructure comes to a half and staff is unable to report into to work many small firms can be dealt a very harsh blow. He added that businesses that do not have many staff members such as small businesses are often hurt the most.

As preparation for the winter months Downes is urging all SME owners to mitigate the impact by being proactive so that they do not have to rush out a reactive plan when bad weather occurs. Making small adjustments that allow staff to work at home during bad weather is enough to help a small business get through harsh weather without suffering as much. He added that it is usually easy enough to set up at home work capabilities, but the task needs to be taken care of in advance of the bad weather.