SOURCE: SAGE

Sage

October 21, 2013 10:49 ET

Sage Reinvention of Small Business Survey: Canadian Small Business Owners Report Great Satisfaction Despite a Belief That the Canadian Economy Has Not Improved

Canadian Small Business Owners Overestimate the Contribution of Small Businesses to Canada's GDP and to Job Creation, but Underestimate the Number of Existing Small Businesses

RICHMOND, BC--(Marketwired - Oct 21, 2013) - Sage North America announced today the availability of Sage 50 Accounting 2014-Canadian Edition for small businesses. The 2014 release coincides with Small Business Week, and Sage also released the findings of the Sage Reinvention of Small Business Study.

The survey, conducted by Angus Reid Public Opinion on behalf of Sage, focused on how Canadian small business owners have changed their working habits over the last five years and assessed their knowledge of the impact small businesses have on the Canadian economy.

Sage, a leading provider of business management software and services to more than 6 million small and midsized businesses worldwide, found that an overwhelming majority of small business owners are satisfied with owning their business, but many are continuing to put in more hours, oftentimes into the weekend, and taking less vacation than they were five years ago. The survey also found that small business owners are not entirely aware of their impact to the Canadian economy with the majority overestimating their economic contributions and the number of new jobs created by small businesses.

"With more than 2.4 million small businesses in Canada, it's a great time to be celebrating them and their contributions to the economy. Canadian small businesses are the backbone of our economy, so it's reassuring to know that nine of ten small business owners are satisfied with owning their own business," said Nancy Harris, senior vice president and general manager of Sage 50 Accounting-Canadian Edition.

"However, the survey also confirms what many have believed: that small business owners are working more than ever before -- longer hours and on weekends. The information gathered from the Sage Reinvention of Small Business Study provides us this insight so we can not only continue to be a trusted advisor and partner to Canadian small businesses, but also to develop tools and services that will help streamline their businesses processes and help them be more efficient."

Satisfaction with being a business owner
While one-third of those surveyed believe the Canadian economy has worsened in the past 12 months, 90 per cent of small business owners reported satisfaction with being a business owner. The need for a flexible personal schedule and the opportunity for financial prosperity were reported as the main reasons they own their own businesses (39 per cent and 38 per cent, respectively). Seventy-two per cent of those surveyed are satisfied with their ability to do business in Canada.

Only 13 per cent of small business owners reported having seriously considering leaving their business to work for someone else. Reasons for the consideration included underestimating the amount of effort and time required and dissatisfaction with the progress of the business. Surprisingly, only 16 per cent of small business owners find it likely that they will pass along the business to their children.

Extended work week and less vacation
The survey found that 27 per cent of small business owners are working more hours per week compared to five years ago; 62 per cent of whom are working both longer days and on weekends. Woman who own businesses reported working more hours than men who own businesses. Those who are dissatisfied with being a business owner are also more likely working less than they were five years ago. Small business owners are vacationing less with one in four taking less vacation. Not surprisingly, those who report dissatisfaction with being a business owner are more likely to report taking less vacation (61 per cent).

Perceptions of the impact small businesses have on the Canadian economy
While two-thirds of small business owners are likely to overestimate small business' contributions to Canada's GDP, the same proportion is likely to underestimate the number of actual small business in Canada. Further, half of small business owners underestimate the number of Canadians that small businesses employ, but two-thirds overestimate the percentage of all new jobs created by small business.

Social media and small business
With only 53 per cent of small businesses utilizing social media for business purposes, 37 per cent use Facebook and 32 per cent use LinkedIn (followed by Twitter at 15 per cent, Pinterest at 5 per cent, and Instagram at 2 per cent). Four-in-five small business owners between the ages of 18-34 years use Facebook for business purposes.

Sage 50 Accounting 2014-Canadian Edition
To help Canadian small businesses gain better control of their operations and gain better insight into the overall financial health of their business, Sage 50 Accounting 2014 product line is now available direct from Sage and at Canadian retailers nationwide. The suggest retail price for Sage 50 starts at $99.99. Sage 50 Quantum Accounting is available for 5-40 users and starts from $3,120. Call 1-800-665-8805 for more details.

For additional detailed information check out: http://www.Sage50Accounting.ca.

Methodology
Sage conducted the survey in September 2013 among 513 small business owners. The margin of error is +/- 4.3 per cent with a confidence level of 95 per cent. For the purpose of this survey, a "small business" is defined as a business that employs up to 99 workers, including those with no employees.

The full findings of the Sage Reinvention of Small Business Survey can be found here.

About The Sage Group plc
Sage Group plc is a leading global provider of business management software to small and medium sized companies, creating greater freedom for them to succeed. Sage understands how and why each business is unique. We provide products and services that suit varying needs, are a pleasure to use and are secure and efficient. Formed in 1981, Sage was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1989 and entered the FTSE 100 in 1999. Sage has over 6 million customers and more than 13,380 employees in 24 countries covering the UK & Ireland, mainland Europe, North America, South Africa, Australia, Asia and Brazil. For further information please visit: www.sage.com

For more information about Sage in North America, please visit the company website at NA.Sage.com. Follow Sage North America on Facebook, Facebook.com/Sage, and Twitter, Twitter.com/SageNAmerica.

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