A new survey has revealed that over one third (38%) of UK small businesses are not driven by profit, instead they are motivated by contributing social value. Over three quarters (77%) reported actively supporting their community and 90% felt their business had a role to play in supporting community organisations.
The Small Business Community Impact Report, published by peak b, interviewed 1,070 small businesses. It reveals that despite their proactivity, less than 5% of small businesses have a formal CSR policy and less than 2% seek government support to do so.
The most significant way small businesses contributed to their communities was via charities (74%), schools (43%), special interest groups (13%), sports clubs (13%), the homeless (12%) and foodbanks (11%).
Additionally, 28% of SMEs offered training to people beyond their own staff, creating professional development opportunities for their communities.
The report identified key trends of UK small business in 2018, including that: small businesses are agents for change; small businesses create opportunities beyond profit generation; and, that there is no formal measurement of the contribution of small businesses to social change.
Michelle Ovens MBE, founder of peak b, commented on the findings, “The value of small businesses, both to local communities and nationally, is phenomenal. We need to recognise the value of small businesses, beyond pure economic and productivity factors. Small businesses create ideas, jobs, training, new products, new ways of working and much more.”