Caithness Map :: Links to Site Map Great value Unlimited Broadband from an award winning provider  

 

Survey Finds Majority Of Highlands And Islands Businesses Use Fair Work Practices

12th September 2019

The latest Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) Business Panel Survey published today (10 September) shows that 89% of companies across the region are offering benefits such as competitive levels of pay, training and skills development, flexible working and paying the living wage.

Over a thousand businesses across the region took part in the latest survey conducted between 10 June and 8 July.

The research exercise also found that businesses are responding to the global climate emergency with two-thirds exploring ways of reducing their environmental impacts. More than half (57%) are planning to make energy efficiency improvements within their businesses.

Many businesses (64%) are also considering how they can use digital and mobile technologies to best effect, while 59% take staff training and development into account when planning.

Regional businesses are generally performing well with around four in five (81%) reporting good or steady performance and three-quarters (73%) expressing optimism about their own prospects over the next 12 months.

Despite two thirds (65%) of businesses being confident that they could access the staff they need in the next 12 months, a similar number (64%) also anticipated challenges in recruiting and retaining staff. Among the constraints identified were supply of suitably skilled candidates, availability of housing and other businesses offering more attractive work packages.

A similar proportion (88%) of businesses are looking at ways of enhancing their competitive position. Actions being taken include investing in premises or equipment, targeting new customers and markets, and analysing data to help inform decision-making.

As reported in past surveys, the prospect of Brexit remains a concern for the region's businesses.

More than half (55%) felt the UK’s decision to leave the EU presents a significant risk to their business and less than a fifth (18%) reported it would bring new opportunities.

The proportion expressing confidence that they can adapt to the consequences of leaving the EU has fallen from 77% at the start of the year to 67%.

More than half reported trade links with the rest of the UK (59%), membership of the European Single Market (56%), membership of the customs union (54%) and free movement of people across the UK (54%) as important to the future success of their business.

Carroll Buxton, HIE’s interim chief executive, said: "Businesses across the region have provided us with really valuable feedback and detailed insights into the challenges and opportunities they are facing, through this survey. This helps inform the public sector and the Scottish Government on how support should be tailored to best meet the region’s needs.

“While business performance and optimism remain strong, there are clearly uncertainties and concerns over what lies ahead. It is encouraging to see our businesses responding to climate change and adopting fair work practices in their operations. There is still a great deal of uncertainty about how Brexit will affect businesses in the region, and we encourage business to take what steps they can to prepare. There is help available on the Prepare For Brexit website and on our own website where businesses can also sign up to join the panel."

 

Related Businesses

 

Related Articles

Public Invited To Share Views On Satellite Launch Site Proposals
Plans to create a spaceport that will launch communications satellites into orbit from the Moine peninsula in Sutherland are set to be unveiled for discussion at public meetings over the next two months.   Development agency Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), which is backing the £17.3m project to design and build Space Hub Sutherland, has today (Wednesday 4 September) lodged a proposal of application notice with the Highland Council.  
Social business programme launches across the Highlands and Islands
People with a business idea that will benefit their local community or environment will soon have access to a new programme of support, being launched across the Highlands and Islands.   Known as the Social Start-Up School, the innovative programme will be delivering four locally focused initiatives.  
HIE Sells Centre For Health Science In InvernessThumbnail for article : HIE Sells Centre For Health Science In Inverness
Highlands and Islands Enterprise has sold the to the University of the Highlands and Islands in a deal worth £9.83m.   Funded by a loan from Scottish Funding Council, the sale will consolidate and help further develop the university's School of Health, Social Care and Life Sciences.  
Lease option agreed for Space Hub Sutherland
The owners of land earmarked for the Space Hub Sutherland development on the Moine Peninsula have agreed a lease option with developer, Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).   Representatives of Melness Crofters Estate (MCE) and HIE signed the agreement yesterday (Wednesday 31 July).  
£3m For Scrabster Harbour ProjectThumbnail for article : £3m For Scrabster Harbour Project
The second phase in a major upgrade of Scrabster Harbour in Caithness has secured up to £3m investment from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).   The funding will enable the redevelopment of the existing St.  
New grants to support young entrepreneurs
Start-up businesses in the Outer Hebrides could receive a welcome injection of capital from a new joint initiative by Business Gateway Outer Hebrides and Highlands and Islands enterprise.   The Outer Hebrides Young Entrepreneur Start-Up Scheme (OHYESS), will provide grants of up to £2,500 to support entrepreneurs age 18-40 to set up businesses in key sectors across the Outer Hebrides.  
Equiniti welcomed to Thurso Business ParkThumbnail for article : Equiniti welcomed to Thurso Business Park
Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has welcomed an international technology-led services and payments specialist as the newest tenant to Thurso Business Park.   The agency has developed the park to enable local firms to expand and to attract new companies into the area.  
Foula Signs Up To Clean Islands Energy Transition PledgeThumbnail for article : Foula Signs Up To Clean Islands Energy Transition Pledge
Residents of Britain's most remote inhabited island have stepped up efforts to move towards a cleaner energy system.   The people of Foula off Shetland have signed up to the Clean Energy Transition Pledge, which commits them to producing a decarbonisation plan over the next 12 months.  
Update To Cairngorm Strategic Plan Is PublishedThumbnail for article : Update To Cairngorm Strategic Plan Is Published
The authors of far-reaching 2018 report on potential investment priorities at Cairngorm Mountain have reviewed and updated their findings.   US-based consultants SE Group were commissioned last year by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), owner of Cairngorm estate.  
Enterprise Agencies Invest In Scotland's FutureThumbnail for article : Enterprise Agencies Invest In Scotland's Future
Scotland's enterprise agencies have launched ambitious plans to help build a more economically vibrant country.   Collectively, and as part of the broader skills and enterprise community, Scottish Enterprise (SE) and Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) have set out how they will invest to support sustainable and inclusive growth in every part of Scotland.  

[Printer Friendly Version]