Edition: Global  
One News Page
“Probably the fastest-access news portal in the world”
> >

7 in 10 firms planning to increase or maintain innovation spending in light of Brexit - CBI survey

One News Page Staff Monday, 21 November 2016
7 in 10 firms planning to increase or maintain innovation spending in light of Brexit - CBI surveyby

Businesses concerned that UK lags behind international competition

As the UK develops its economic role in the world outside of the EU, companies are planning to bolster spending on innovation to drive business growth, gain a competitive edge and ultimately, raise productivity.

A CBI survey of over 800 businesses - supported by Deloitte and Hays - shows that 70% of respondents plan to increase or maintain their innovation spending following the vote to leave the EU. Only 7% plan to reduce their investment.

Last year business invested almost £21bn on innovation, allowing British firms to develop cutting-edge products and services, attract global investment and expand internationally. The challenge for businesses is that while the UK innovation system has world-class attributes, it does not currently match their ambitions. Businesses rate the UK as 10th in the world for innovation.

While some firms view the UK as a world-beater in areas such as access to scientific research (35%) and tax incentives to support investment (30%) – the UK lags behind in other critical areas. Businesses rate the UK as a follower in areas such as partnering with external companies (21%) and grant funding (14%). In order to support businesses’ ambition to make the UK an innovation powerhouse, the CBI is calling on Government to commit to a long term-target of 3% public and private spend on R&D.

Looking ahead to the upcoming EU negotiations, firms have a number of top priorities that will enable them to innovate in the future – access to skills (66%), tariff-free access for goods (41%) and keeping common regulatory standards (38%).

Carolyn Fairbairn, CBI Director-General, said:

“The UK will need to work hard to become the front-runner in global innovation, creating a pioneering economic role for itself in the world that drives prosperity in every corner of the UK.

“Innovation is the nucleus of future economic and social development, so it’s encouraging that seven out of ten firms will keep up - or even raise – their spending on new technologies and work practices to grow their business.

“As we prepare to depart the EU, this shows that firms are rolling up their sleeves and looking to make the best of Brexit.

“Spending on innovation generates jobs and economic growth across the country, offering solutions to the challenges we face today and in the years ahead from improving healthcare and mobile technology to a new generation of autonomous vehicles.

“While the UK has many innovation strengths to build on, businesses are worried that the country is too much of a follower in the global economy, with the lack of access to technical skills a grave concern for ambitious firms.

“This Autumn Statement comes at a real crunch point to support our inventors, makers and designers, so the Chancellor must make the most of the tools at his disposal. The CBI wants to see a long-term commitment to target 3% of GDP in R&D spending by 2025 and a doubling of Innovate UK’s budget.

“This needs to be underpinned by a new Industrial Strategy which builds on the UK’s sectoral and regional strengths.”

Other key findings from the survey, supported by Deloitte and Hays, include:

* Customer service (24%) and product development (30%) are seen as two key areas that would benefit from greater innovation

* For more effective innovation, the top priorities are to increase collaboration and partnership (65%), greater access to technical skills (68%) and increased Government support (56%)

* 44% of firms believe that the main benefits of automation are increased productivity, an improved product or service (24%) and higher customer satisfaction (15%)

* With increased automation expected over the next ten years, companies believe that they will need more highly skilled staff (48%) and that automation may replace some roles (49%), while 20% believe there will be no effect.

David Sproul, chief executive of Deloitte UK, said:

“Britain has a real opportunity to be a world leader in innovation and we should be ambitious in our vision for what can be achieved. It is promising that businesses recognise the need to prioritise investing in new technologies.

“However, while our country excels in ideas generation, it has a less successful track record to date of businesses adopting innovative approaches to boost productivity. “We have an opportunity in the new post Brexit world to change that; Britain has world leading universities, but still has more to do to raise its record on secondary education, strengthening vocational routes to work and increasing the focus on skills for the future.”

Alistair Cox, Chief Executive, Hays PLC, said:

“Innovation brings us better ways of doing things, new solutions to old problems and whole new industries from which to grow. But in order for businesses to innovate they need the people with the skills to take their strategy forward and it is a great concern that many businesses today feel that they don't have access to the skills they need.
“Government and business must work together to realign our education system in order to produce the graduates with the skills that are needed by today's and tomorrow's industries. In the meantime we must not restrict access into the UK for highly-skilled workers from abroad. Only by ensuring that UK businesses can access world-class talent, whether home-grown or from overseas, can we ensure that British business remains competitive and gains a position at the leading edge of innovation globally."

Other findings include:

* There is strong support for innovation at board and management level - 88% agree their board back innovation

* But firms are struggling to find the capacity – 35% agree that their staff don’t have enough time to innovate

* 44% of respondents believe that their firms are Pioneers in innovation (early adopters and developers), while 42% regards their business as Experimenters (curious about innovation and looking to experiment) and 13% regard themselves as Followers (once innovative practices are already in the mainstream)

The CBI’s submission to the Autumn Statement sets out a number of key requests to the Government to lift UK innovation

Share on
Share on
Post on 
Share by

You Might Like

Other recent news in Business

ALIBABA is about to bring in more than Prime Day, Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined (BABA)How Alibaba turned an obscure, made-up Chinese holiday into a $14.3 billion shopping extravaganza that's bigger than BLACK FRIDAY
Bigger Than Black Friday, Alibaba's 'SINGLES DAY' Faces Fatigue in ChinaMattel stock soars on report of HASBRO takeover offer
Hasbro Said to Make Bid for Toy Rival MATTELMoney is pouring into BITCOIN cash after BITCOIN crashed more than $1,000 in 48 hours
AMAZON's new $5 billion headquarters could give these 5 cities the biggest boost (AMZN)Australia could join LONDON in Uber ban
JEFFERIES: NVIDIA has 'tectonic upside' (NVDA)HOUSTON funeral home company enters Colorado market


•More original news reports from One News Page
Environmentally friendly: One News Page is hosted on servers powered solely by renewable energy
© 2017 One News Page Ltd. All Rights Reserved.  |  About us  |  Disclaimer  |  Press Room  |  Terms & Conditions  |  Privacy Policy  |  Content Accreditation
 RSS  |  News for my Website  |  Free news search widget  |  Help  |  Contact us  |  DMCA / Content Removal
How are we doing? Send us your feedback  |   LIKE us on Facebook   FOLLOW us on Twitter   FIND us on Google+