SMEs are struggling to win business in the public sector, says study

A new study suggests that some 65 per cent of UK small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are struggling to win business in the public sector.

The data, which suggests that many small businesses are ‘facing barriers’ when trying to gain access to public sector procurement, comes from the annual Tech UK SME Survey.

It found that a staggering 94 per cent of SMEs felt that civil servant buyers had a poor understanding of how SMEs could meet their needs.

A further 65 per cent added that they had experienced difficulties gaining access to the public sector, and that initiatives such as the Contracts Finder service or the Government’s move to abolish pre-qualifying questionnaires (PQQs) had done little to help them.

Naureen Khan, TechUK’s director of public services, said: “It is clear that changes must be made to develop simple and accessible procurement processes.

“Our survey findings show that we need swift action to ensure the public sector benefits from harnessing the very best of UK tech”.

Khan added that SMEs should also see themselves as having a ‘key role’ in driving innovation in Government.