Majority of SMEs don’t have a succession plan in place

SMEs in Australia are struggling with succession planning, according to recently released figures from Bibby Financial Services. 

The study found that roughly 72 per cent of small- and medium-sized businesses in Australia do not have a succession plan in place. 

Medium-sized enterprises fared slightly better than smaller companies in the survey, with 35 per cent having a succession plan in place. This compares to only 10 per cent of firms in the micro-business category. 

While companies are struggling with succession planning, there are still some good signs to come out of the survey. Many small business owners are talking over the development of their business with an advisor of some kind. In fact, almost half (49 per cent) of SMEs suggested that they would consult with an expert in the next 12 months.

The most common reasons for pursuing these line of communication were for advice around the end of financial year, although another 44 per cent are also seeking advice on compliance issues.

Bibby’s survey also contained some insights into the issues that small business owners are facing, beyond the lack of succession planning. Many firms are struggling with time management, with 31 per cent of small-business owners citing this as a concern during their operations.

Fuel costs and an increasingly competitive market are also taking their toll on Australian companies, with these factors taking a toll on the overall quality of life for small business owners.

For Queensland SMEs that want to institute a succession plan – or just receive legal advice, it is important to consult with a commercial lawyer. They will be able to provide advice on this process, as well as any other processes that might affect your company’s commercial contracts.