Emma Jones, founder of enterprise Nation and now one of the leading voices in the SME sector has kicked off 2017 with a call to continue the good work being done in government to support small businesses.
Jones’s latest blog outlines the work already done during her first six months as Crown Representative for Small Businesses. Having focused initially on simplifying the process of bidding for government contracts, ‘We’ve made the process simpler and I’m delighted to announce a trial is underway called ‘Complete Once’, where you will provide information once and it will be saved for future to save you time,” Jones writes.
“This year we will be focussing on simplifying the language in contracts and making terms and conditions easier to understand. Don’t forget if you do uncover problems when trying to work with government, you can tell the Mystery Shopper service anonymously who will investigate,” she adds.
Innovation to the fore
Elsewhere, as part of her remit to innovate and find ways of making SMEs lives easier, Jones says she has been working with small businesses to come up with new ideas to generate innovation in government. “The Prime Minister announced a review of the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI), which will look at how we can increase the initiative’s impact and give more innovators their first break,” she says, “And Cambridge entrepreneur David Connell will lead the review and report back next year. I have reported to David on what I learnt from small businesses in 2016.
Finally, the third plank of Jones’ work is promoting better links and trade between government and small buisneses. To that end, Jones says she has hosted roundtables in Birmingham, Leeds, Bristol and London and has spoken at events across the UK, meeting over 100 small businesses.
“Online, I’ve hosted webinars with buyers across government and working with the Crown Commercial Service and the Cabinet Office, we’ve reached over 1 million people with the new ‘Government is Open for Business’ campaign.”
More details can be found here