This site uses cookies to improve your browsing experience and analyse use of our website. By clicking ‘I accept’ you agree and consent to our use of cookies. You can find out more about our cookies here. Find out more

Onwards and upwards - could digital transformation be the key to business recovery?

Onwards and upwards - could digital transformation be the key to business recovery?

Maureen Penfold


Every quarter, we ask business leaders across the country to share their aspirations for the next six months and track business confidence. Our latest Owner Managed Business (OMB) survey carried out in April 2022 looks at these consistent measures and new issues affecting UK businesses today.

Our latest Owner Managed Business (OMB) survey shows that although the proportion of businesses saying they are highly confident in the overall outlook has more than doubled over the past 12 months, business owners are not out of the woods yet. For many, it feels a bit like a case of ‘out of the frying pan into the fire’. Still recovering from COVID, the UK now faces rising costs, inflation, the fallout from Brexit and the war in Ukraine. With nine out of 10 businesses believing that rising costs will affect profitability this year, business owners are turning their attention to ways they can reduce operating costs and become more efficient.

With businesses focused on both survival and success this year, business owners are looking to digital solutions to offset rising business costs. More than 9 out of 10 OMB’s (91%) say they are planning some form of digital transformation in the next two years, with time and cost savings and increased flexibility seen as the primary benefits.

Recruitment remains a major challenge for businesses, but there are some early signs things may be beginning to improve in this area. After what has been an explosive 12 months for the recruitment market, we may be starting to see some stabilisation with fewer businesses saying they’ve increased their workforce over the past three months (29% compared to 38% in November 2021).

However, with four in 10 businesses planning to expand their workforce over the next three months, and more than half of businesses (53%) saying that recruitment has become noticeably more difficult, securing quality candidates in such a competitive market remains difficult.

Despite the difficulties they face on the road ahead, this survey shows a clear picture of the increasing confidence among UK business owners. While it is likely to continue being an unpredictable year as businesses face the backlash of global issues, time and investment into digital solutions will be paramount for success.