Fast Lane: SMEs want action on penalty rates

Fast Lane: SMEs want action on penalty rates

If Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is serious about reviewing penalty rates, he has the support of the small business community.

This is one of the key findings of EntreHub’s State of the Small Business Nation survey, conducted in October.

A whopping 83% of the small businesses, startups and entrepreneurs surveyed by EntreHub say it’s time for the federal government to review penalty rates.

The survey is based on responses from 304 small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Turnbull has argued everyday Australians will need to be convinced they will be better off if penalty rates are to be altered and has indicated his government is open to cutting Sunday rates.

The Productivity Commission has already backed a cut to Sunday penalty rates in the draft report for its inquiry into the workplace relations system, with a final report due to be handed down later this year.

For the small business owners that want to see reform, this change in rhetoric would be a welcome sign.

The Prime Minister should also be heartened to see 72% of the same group of small business owners and entrepreneurs believe his elevation to the nation’s top job has boosted confidence in the government.

A majority of the same group (62%) also say they are more confident about the Australian economy that at the same time last year. Another 17% said they are indifferent.

And the change in Liberal Party leadership has not dampened the level of support for the small business package the government  handed down in the May federal budget, with 81% of survey respondents saying they are in favour of the policies, which included the $20,000 asset write-off scheme.

In contrast, only 6% of the small business owners and entrepreneurs surveyed said they are in favour of the Opposition’s policies, while 63% said they want to know more from the Labor Party.

Thirty-one per cent of the survey respondents said they weren’t aware Labor had a suite of small business policies.

With growing popularity in the opinion polls and a greater level of awareness of the Coalition’s small business priorities in the SME community, an opportunity it sitting in front of the Turnbull’s eyes.

Prime Minister Turnbull, you have support among small business to seriously review penalty rates.

Now is the time to listen and put forward your plan.

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