The Federation of Small Businesses and X-Forces Enterprise jointly welcome the expected confirmation by the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak in the Spring Budget, that he will include new plans for a one-year Employer National Insurance Contributions holiday for small businesses to employ veterans…

This was one of a number of measures recommended by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), and supported by X-Forces Enterprise (XFE), to stimulate the employment of veterans in small business in Britain.

FSB’s research finds that more than one-in-ten (12%) of Britain’s small businesses have employed an Armed Forces veteran in the last three years, with manufacturing the most common sector (20%) followed by Wholesale, Retail and Repair (15%) and Professional, Scientific and Technical (11%).

Among those employing veterans, the benefits they have found include resolving skills shortages (35%), improving team performance (27%) and providing fresh perspectives and creative ideas (26%).

Mike Cherry OBE, FSB National Chairman, said: “We welcome the Chancellor’s confirmation to introduce a new a one-year National Insurance holiday for small businesses to employ Armed Forces veterans. FSB has asked for this as a way to stimulate the employment of veterans in small firms.

“For veterans seeking employment, small businesses can often be better than bigger ones at spotting and nurturing talent, rather than discard a service leaver’s job application because some of their skills and qualifications aren’t necessarily from a traditional academic route.

“Helping to ease the costs will let small businesses benefit from the unique attributes that veterans can bring to enterprise, whilst giving the opportunity to those who have served to contribute to and thrive within the civilian economy.”

Ren Kapur MBE, FSB’s volunteer Armed Forces champion and CEO of X-Forces Enterprise, said: “Over the last 18 months, FSB and XFE have been working together, through research, reporting and lobbying, to get this noticed at the highest ministerial level, and have kept the pressure on despite constant changes in government.

“The culmination of this work in partnership means that all businesses across the UK, irrelevant of size, can support the service leaver whilst boosting business. This could be the ‘sea change’ required to enhance the success of transitioning, for those either looking for jobs, or being hired, in the Armed Forces. This additional money available can support onboarding and training”

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