Global survey reveals UK employers are worried about rising costs in 2024

  • Business Advice
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Peninsula Group, HR and Health & Safety Experts

(Last updated )

Every company in the UK will have its own set of business goals for 2024. Peninsula, a global employment law, HR, Health & Safety advisory, and consultancy firm, launched a survey to find out just what these might be.

The survey results will provide employers around the country more insight into how their business goals match with others. Below is a summary of the results, with an in-depth analysis of each question.

Let's explore what UK business owners had to say.

What are your top concerns as a business for 2024?

The results of this question show the overriding concern for employers in the UK in 2024 is rising costs, with 87.6% agreeing. This isn’t overly surprising as the economy remains volatile, as it has been over the last couple of years.

38.4% of companies cited their main concern was a labour shortage, whilst 35.8% stated energy costs. The latter suggests many companies are worried about how the economy will affect the day-to-day running of their business.

What support have you offered to employees to aid retention?

Almost half of the business owners (49.3%) answered that they’ve offered financial remuneration to aid employee retention. However, this may become more difficult if concerns about rising costs come to fruition.

The two other common answers were both around employee wellbeing. 48.7% of businesses offered mental health support, whilst 48.3% provided flexible working hours.

At Peninsula, we offer support for employee wellbeing with our employee assistance programme; a total package of wellbeing tools to be used at any time.

What is your biggest challenge right now when it comes to staffing?

There was no stand-out answer to this question, but all the top answers given had an element of finance involved.

Recruitment (29.5%), pay increase requests (22.6%), and cost of living (17.8%) – seem to be the most common challenges employers in the UK face when it comes to staffing. With the cost of living being higher than in recent decades, employees will be worried their monthly salary doesn’t cover their bills.

So, there may be an increase in pay rise requests, as well as new potential hires requesting a higher salary before accepting a role.

For advice on recruitment, as well as managing pay rise requests – contact Peninsula today.

What is your top business goal for 2024?

Unsurprisingly, almost half (46.1%) of employers cited growth as their top business goal for 2024. However more concerningly, more answered that simply surviving was more of an aim than expansion of services – with 18.8% of employers agreeing.

It’s quite staggering that some companies are aiming to just survive rather than to expand their services, which should be every business’s main goal. Hopefully, as we move through 2024, company objectives will change.

Worried about your business’s finances? Peninsula can offer expert advice on any financial worries you may have regarding the upcoming business year. Get in touch today.

How have you handled the ongoing labour/skills shortage?

There were two outstanding answers for this, with just over 50% of business owners agreeing to each. 52.8% of business owners in the UK are handling the ongoing skills shortage by offering their employees pay rises, and 51.8% training and upskilling.

Another way employers are handling labour shortages is by offering flexible working hours, with 36.8% of employers in agreement.

What statement best describes your working practices at your business?

The results of this question show that more and more employers are starting to move back to the traditional working model of all employees being in the workplace full-time. 51.2% of people surveyed gave this answer.

Meanwhile, just over a quarter (26.7%) of businesses cited that they have flexible working hours as standard, with 15.1% having a hybrid working as a permanent fixture. It’ll be interesting to see how this changes over the coming year.

What does the survey say about the business goals of UK employees in 2024?

The answers to the survey make it clear that the economy and financial situation will play a large part in how businesses will perform in 2024.

Employees will feel the squeeze of the cost of living and in turn may request a higher salary, as well as it costing you more to recruit talent. To offset this, businesses are offering more employee support in terms of mental health and wellbeing. This way, they can aim to retain their staff by offering benefits other than salary increases.

Get expert advice and help for your business in 2024 from Peninsula

Worried about your business in 2024? Maybe you’re struggling to retain staff, implement policies, or are short on time to spend growing your business. Whatever your company might be facing, Peninsula can help.

With our HR services, you’ll discover an easier and safer way to manage staff. You’ll have access to the best HR advice, time-saving software, legal protection, and more. Not to mention, you’ll enjoy it for a fraction of the cost of hiring internal HR staff.

So, you’ll save money and time – both of which can be spent on growing your business in 2024.

Want to find out more? Contact us on 0800 028 2420 and book a free consultation with an HR consultant today.

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