Small businesses opposed to extra holiday plans

29-08-2006

The majority of small businesses are opposed to government plans which would increase holiday entitlements for staff, according to a new poll.

The survey by the Forum of Private Businesses (FPB) found that six in ten smaller businesses disagree with the proposal to extend annual statutory holiday agreements from 20 to 28 days, including bank holidays or time off in lieu.

Among the concerns raised by the 1,500 small businesses surveyed were increased costs, the loss of key staff, difficulties in rostering and increased administration.

However, 41 per cent of respondents agreed with the government plans, with many of them likely to be among the 46 per cent that already give staff 28 days of annual holiday.

"We understand that the government wishes to help hard-working families enjoy higher wages, better pensions and increased leisure time," said FPB chief executive, Nick Goulding.

"However, if this is what they wish to do, they should look towards decreasing other costs for smaller businesses."

When asked if employers should be able to 'buy out' the extra holidays, 62 per cent said it should be possible for all or some additional days, with 78 per cent saying that it should only be done by 'mutual agreement' between employer and employee.



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