Small businesses ‘content with size’

Three in five small businesses are failing to implement digital technology such as cloud computing, a UCC study has found.

Small businesses ‘content with size’

Three in five small businesses are failing to implement digital technology such as cloud computing, a UCC study has found.

The report on businesses that have up to nine employees found a quarter had ambitions to grow into a national or international business, but that almost three-quarters were content to stay at their current scale.

While adding digital technology was on par with UK small firms and considerably higher than those in the US, just 40% were using the likes of cloud computing and accountancy-based software to enhance their business, the report said.

Just over a third of small firms did business online, it found, while a quarter had not adopted any digital technology.

More than three-quarters of small businesses are family-owned, and the ratio of male to female owners is 2:1, the report said.

Co-author and economist at Cork University Business School in UCC, Jane Bourke said: “These business play an important role in the fabric of Ireland’s national and local economy.

“This study lifts the lid on their ambitions, innovation and growth aspirations and presents an in-depth economic picture of where Irish microbusiness are, versus their international competitors.

Government policy is to grow small business but this may not be what small business want.

Dean of Cork University Business School, Thia Hennessy said the report “emphasises the importance that micro-businesses, due to their scale and access to technology, should not be left behind larger businesses in the global digital revolution”.

More in this section

The Business Hub
Newsletter

News and analysis on business, money and jobs from Munster and beyond by our expert team of business writers.

Sign up
Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day.

Lunchtime
News Wrap

A lunchtime summary of content highlights on the Irish Examiner website. Delivered at 1pm each day.

Sign up
Revoiced
Newsletter

Our Covid-free newsletter brings together some of the best bits from irishexaminer.com, as chosen by our editor, direct to your inbox every Monday.

Sign up