Christmas Downtime Costs UK SME an Average of £11,500 (Infographic)

Christmas – as a holiday season – is the time when cash counters across the globe are ringing. If you’re running a business, Christmas definitely is when you will be working hard to meet the demands of your customers. While it means boom time for sales it also means you will be spending on gifts and parties for employees as well as clients.

Careful budgeting and proper planning for such expenses will help your business to be prepared for the same. Most times businesses fail to estimate such expenses accurately and this results in them struggling to cope with the volume of expenses. Recently Stay Sourced spoke to 100 UK professionals across different business backgrounds. They were asked to give their opinions from present and past experiences as to how much a business spends on gifts and Christmas parties.

Stay Sourced, one of UK’s leading promotional products companies, published an interesting infographic, which can show you exactly how UK SME’s loss an average of £11,500 in workplace downtime and £250 million in total on office parties during the Christmas season:

How much will Christmas cost your business?

The findings were interesting and are summarized below:

What do you expect from your workplace at Christmas?

More than half the interviewees said they would appreciate a gift from their workplace. This number extended to 69% of the interviewees who were under 35 years of age. Not surprising considering younger people have a greater liking for gifts.

How many interviewees actually received gifts from their workplace?

This number stood at a disappointing 22% indicating a huge disparity between what employees expect and what employers actually give them for Christmas. Considering the fact that corporate gifts help businesses earn good brownie points it is surprising to note that businesses do not seem to be making an impression with gifts.

How many employees use a gift from their workplace?

The number is quite large, 89% of those surveyed said that they still used a pen they’d received as a gift from a business at some point. This indicates a huge scope for businesses to use gifts as morale building and motivational tools. If given to clients they will ensure high recall value particularly if they are items everyone uses like pens and coffee mugs.

Are UK businesses aware of the money saving prospects available to them at Christmas?

Does not seem like they are aware for instance the average amount spent by UK businesses was found to be £183.40, a good £33.40 too much to be able to reclaim money back offered by the HMRC. HMRC provides a money back scheme to businesses holding parties or employee events, as long as the company stays within a few simple boundaries like £150 per head for a no “CEO” or “managers only” parties. Clearly businesses are not trying to save as much as they can.

Do you think that enough is spent on a Christmas party?

34% interviewees did not think so.

Does your workplace have a plan for downtime?

62% of those surveyed said no such plans. 31% ranked downtime costs as the biggest cost likely to be incurred at Christmas.

Should companies expect to lose money over Christmas?

27% interviewees answered in the affirmative.

Christmas gifts will definitely please employees and customers. Some careful planning, strategies like giving gifts that are frequently used and induce high recall and keeping an eye on ways o save will help businesses be more prepared and avoid downtime.