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Business Growth Hub Launch 2017 Business Survey

Business Growth Hub, part of Manchester Growth Company, is encouraging businesses across the region to participate in the 2017 Greater Manchester Business Survey.

Since 2012, the Business Growth Hub has co-ordinated a Greater Manchester-wide (GM) business survey, completed last year by 1,400 Greater Manchester businesses in partnership with Manchester City Council and Bolton Council. The shorter, more focused, survey − this year produced in partnership with Manchester City Council, Oldham Council and Stockport Council − covers a broad range of themes including drivers and barriers to growth, skills, training and recruitment, and innovation activity among others.

The survey is an annual snapshot of the Greater Manchester economy and helps provide data on current and future economic performance by local businesses. This research helps the Hub, and its partners, identify the opportunities and barriers to growth so it can adapt its business programmes more effectively to help the region’s growing businesses.

This year there’s an added emphasis on gathering survey data that will help inform the development of services, which enable local people and places to contribute to, and also benefit from, job opportunities, new skills and the growth of our businesses.  

Greater Manchester now sits alongside the West Midlands conurbation as the largest metropolises in the UK behind London, each with populations of over two-and-a-half million people, and has experienced a rate of growth over the last 20 years that make it one of the most prosperous areas outside of the capital. 

To explore this issue further the Hub, and its partners, would like to gain a better understanding of the drivers of growth and how residents of Greater Manchester, right across the conurbation, can benefit from the growth opportunities.

This focus comes off the back of the findings of last year’s survey, which found that the main barriers to growth are lack of employees or skills (30%), access to markets or sales opportunities (27%) and access to finance (22%). These were consistent with 2015’s result findings too.

Richard Jeffery, Director of Business Growth at the Hub: “Field work started on Monday 12 June in the form of question and answer research delivered by QA, an independent body. The responses to our previous Business Surveys have helped us to greatly improve the effectiveness and suitability of our fully-funded support offering to Greater Manchester’s business community.

“Therefore, we strongly encourage business owners to take part if they are contacted – the greater the sample size, the more relevant the improvements we can make to the services we provide to the business community.

“Together with our partners, we recognise that we have a shared responsibility – not just to help develop better ways for widespread prosperity – but to provide support which is pragmatic and tangible in the short-term.”

Businesses in Greater Manchester interested in taking part in the 2017 Greater Manchester Business Survey can e-mail


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