Prompt Payment Code targets late payment culture

One third of payments to small businesses are late, causing cash flow problems for many. Find support if you are affected by late payments, or sign up to the Code if you are a supplier that pays on time.

The late payment culture among UK businesses

The Small Business Commissioner (SBC) is an independent public body set up to tackle late payment and unfavourable payment practices in the private sector.

The SBC says that:

  • a third of payments to small businesses are late
  • the average value of each payment is £6,142
  • 20% of small businesses have run in to cash flow problems due to late payments
  • if small businesses were paid on time, this could boost the economy by an estimated £2.5 billion annually

Are you affected by late payments?

If your business has been affected by late payments, there is help and advice available to help you:

  • resolve disputes
  • take action if a payment is overdue

Visit the Small Business Commissioner website for advice and information on:

  • dealing with an unpaid invoice
  • how to invoice correctly
  • understanding the terms of your contract
  • calculating how much interest you may be owed
  • how to solve problems through mediation
  • case studies of successfully resolved disputes

Recorded webinars to watch on demand

The Small Business Commissioner has posted recordings some of its recent webinars which provide advice and guidance for small businesses experiencing late payment issues.

You can also watch a couple of short videos explaining the advice and support on offer from the SBC.

Do you pay invoices on time? Sign up to the Prompt Payment Code!

The Prompt Payment Code is a voluntary code of practice for businesses to sign up to in order to show they undertake to:

  • pay suppliers on time, within agreed terms
  • give clear guidance to suppliers on terms, dispute resolution and prompt notification of late payment
  • support good practice throughout their supply chain by encouraging adoption of the Code

The Code requires signatories to undertake to pay 95% of invoices within a maximum of 60 days, work towards adopting 30 days as the norm and avoid any practices that adversely affect the supply chain.

Buckinghamshire Business First is a signatory of the Prompt Payment Code, showing a commitment to paying our suppliers promptly - and we would encourage other organisations to do likewise.

Contact the Small Business Commissioner

If you need support with late payments, or would like to sign up to the Prompt Payment Code, contact the Small Business Commissioner via the details on its website.

You can also follow the SBC on social media:

You can also use the hashtag: #MakePaymentPrompt

Business community ambassadors