SMEs in the UK are currently wasting 900,000 hours per day chasing late payments

In December 2019, Tide (a business account provider) surveyed 1,000 executive level staff within SMEs based in the UK, to analyse their use of time during their work day.

The study found:

  • SMEs across the UK are chasing more than £50bn in late payments
  • On average, SMEs were chasing five outstanding invoices at any one time. With the cost of those outstanding invoices amounting to an average of £8,500
  • On average, 1.5 hours per day were being used to chase payment, equating to a total of 900,000 hours per day
  • London businesses were the most affected by late payments with an average of seven invoices outstanding and spending two hours per day chasing
  • Scotland was in second place with an average of six outstanding invoices and chasing late payments for an hour and a quarter per day
  • South West businesses had the best results with just three outstanding invoices
  • Businesses with 10-50 employees have an average of 7.5 outstanding invoices, totalling over £13,000

Director of My Debt Recovery, Sean Husband, commented:

“Unfortunately, the results from this new piece of research do not surprise us. It is a common fact within the industry that SMEs struggle with late payments. Cash flow is vital for SMEs and just a few late payments can see them face financial difficulties and ultimately face closure.

This is exactly why I started My Debt Recovery, to support businesses like this and give them their time back to focus on growing their businesses.”

If you are having trouble with late payments and want your time back to concentrate on your business growth, contact our specialist team on 0800 009 6106 or


Get In touch

0800 009 6106