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More than three million UK workers want to start their own business in 2022

Discover why over 3 million UK workers want to start their own business, according to a study by Intuit QuickBooks.

5 min read

Being your own boss is perhaps one of the most attractive parts of owning a business, and is something many UK workers are choosing. Seemingly spurred on by the rising entrepreneurial spirit that’s sweeping the nation, one in 10 employees are interested in starting their own business, according to research by Intuit QuickBooks.

According to a study by Intuit QuickBooks, more than three million UK workers want to start their own business. Find out more in our latest post.

This marks over three million potential new entrepreneurs in the UK alone. Here, we’ll go through why that is, and some of the unique hurdles new business owners are likely to face in this new post-COVID world.

Pandemic accelerating plans to start a business

When COVID-19 brought the world to a standstill, what followed was a boom in the number of startups around the UK. In fact, our study found that 75% of UK entrepreneurs admit that the pandemic accelerated their plans to start their own business.

This entrepreneurship spirit doesn’t look set to slow down for 2022. Intuit’s research also found that 42% of employees dream of owning their own business, rather than work for another company.

With the pandemic proving that most industries can survive with remote working, it makes sense that more businesses can start without the need for traditional costs, like an office space. The lower startup costs make the goal of starting a new business much more achievable, which may have been the catalyst needed for the startup boom.

Being the boss also brings a sense of security that isn’t always felt amongst employees. The pandemic left much of the workforce facing pay cuts, furlough and even redundancy, and this level of uncertainty and lack of security allowed many workers to rethink their priority list, giving them the drive to launch a new venture.

Research by Intuit QuickBooks found that 42% of employees dream of owning their own business.

Rate of inflation affecting businesses

Inflation rates have hit a 10-year high as we continue to navigate a post-COVID world. But while the cost of living has gone up, the same can’t be said for average incomes, leaving most households forced to cut back and change their spending habits. In fact, 91% of Intuit’s respondents found that the rate of inflation will force them to change their spending habits over the next six months. Meanwhile, 97% are concerned as to how inflation will disrupt their regular day-to-day living.

With concerns this high, it makes sense that owning a business is such an attractive goal to so many. In fact, respondents who expressed the most concern about the rate of inflation were found to be most likely to want to start a business. Along with the added security of being the boss, the income of a “side hustle” can help minimise any compromises in spending habits, allowing workers to continue living the life they’re used to.

How technology is key to SMB success

Along with remote working, the pandemic brought much more screen time to the average day. With so much free time and nowhere to go, the nation went online instead, highlighted by the fact 32% of small business revenue is generated from social media sales. No longer confined to local purchases, shoppers were able to buy on a global scale. However, perhaps most surprisingly, more and more shoppers were choosing to part with their hard-earned cash in favour of buying from independent businesses.

Intuit’s study found that this support of small businesses isn’t likely to slow down, with almost half (47%) of those surveyed revealing that they’ll continue shopping with small businesses over the next six months.

These trends aren’t missed by small business owners. In fact, 91% of SMBs admit that online sales will be important in 2022, with almost half (47%) revealing they’re focusing more on digital technology this year. Of the business owners surveyed, 14% shared that they’re already completely reliant on the revenue generated by online sales.

With this growing digitalisation, it makes sense that all processes can be done online. Traditional business paperwork, like accounting and invoicing, is now almost solely online through the use of accounting software. QuickBooks also offers a digital way of sending and paying invoices, making the process faster, which improves cash flow. As well as this, businesses must now follow Making Tax Digital processes, as outlined by the government.

Software like QuickBooks offers huge benefits to small businesses and those who are self employed. With the range of features available, first-time business owners needn’t worry about having to understand complex accounting formulas, while the digital software allows it to easily grow as a business scales up.

1 QuickBooks commissioned survey of 3,500 UK employees age 18+, November 2021

2 QuickBooks commissioned Qualtrics to survey 875 small business owners and decision makers throughout the UK in November 2021

Inspired to focus on your own business this year? We offer helpful tips that every business owner should know.

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