In August 2023, key issues raised by Buckinghamshire businesses included:
Business planning: Some businesses are finding that they need to be increasingly flexible to be able to cope with increasingly last-minute requirements. Last minute orders create challenges with cashflow and workforce availability.
ULEZ: Some businesses are seeking assistance to cope with rising ULEZ costs, which are affecting their ability to effectively delivery and service London clients. This is an additional cost, which is affecting the profitability for delivery services. Help with purchasing low emission delivery vehicles is being requested.
Recruitment: Recruiting staff who are willing to be trained and work in the bus and coach transport industry remains the single largest growth barrier for local coach companies; citing peoples need for increase work-life balance as the problem since Covid. This was given as one of the reasons when a coach company ceased to trade at the beginning of August.
The above issues were highlighted to BBF by local businesses. BBF use this 'on-the-ground' intelligence to inform local business support activity, and share it with central government on a monthly basis to inform national strategy.