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Earlier in 2014, Bibby Financial Services produced the report ‘Livelihood businesses in the UKwhich is a study of micro-enterprises and looks in depth at the small business environment. In this blogpost we’ll look back at the report and our findings around the subject of the working week and annual leave.

Most people will agree that being the boss of a ‘micro-business’ will require longer hours and less personal time when compared to someone working the normal nine-five.

According to the Office for National Statistics, in the third quarter of 2013 the average number of hours worked per week in the UK was 32.1. Eighty seven per cent of micro-business owners’ work in excess of 31 hours, with more than 60 per cent working over 41 hours and one in ten working over 61 hours per week. Only 13 per cent of business owners work 30 or fewer hours per week.

Level of commitment

These figures are all representative of the true level of commitment of entrepreneurs and business owners. The added pressure of not earning a fixed regular wage means owners put in extra time and effort to make their start-up a viable and successful business. But what about holidays and annual leave?

Unsurprisingly our study found that micro-business owners take less holiday days per year than the average found in full-time employment:

  • 33% of owners take just ten days or less
  • 64 per cent in total take 20 or less holiday days each year

With micro-business owners often working on their own, and looking to reinvest any profits into growing the business, time pressures often mean longer hours, and weekend working. While building a business owners often see holidays as a luxury they cannot afford.

Download the report

Please download the report for more information. On the Bibby Financial Services Blog we’ll be looking back at more findings from the report over the coming weeks so remember to keep checking back to see if our findings proved relevant for the rest of 2014 and beyond.

Contact Bibby Financial Services

As the UK’s leading independent invoice finance specialist and a trusted provider of cashflow funding to over 7,000 businesses, Bibby Financial Services provides a range of finance solutions for businesses in over 300 industry sectors. For more information about Bibby Financial Services’ cashflow solutions, visit: or call 0800 91 95 92.