Procurement · 12 May 2017

Network providers failing business owners on mobile coverage

Mobile coverage
Ofcom has set a target to deliver 4G to each UK premises by the end of 2017
Unreliable mobile coverage affects seven in ten UK business owners, according to new survey findings, with rural firms mostlikely to receive the slowest connections.

A nationwide survey, by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), asked over 1, 400 business owners how their level of mobile coverage affected trading and sales. The findings revealed a worrying high numberof so-called connectivity not-spots.

For firms in rural regions, the figures were the most stark. Over nine in ten business owners in such areasreported unreliable network coverage from their provider, compared to just over half based in cities.

However, even inner-city firms suffered from disappointing levels of mobile coverage. Just 54 per cent of business owners in metropolitan areas could depend on a consistent 4G network.

Some six in ten business leaders even relied on out-dated 2G coverage.

According to Adam Marshall, director general of the BCC, unreliable mobile coverage had started to seriously impact the daily operations of business owners.

I hear from frustrated businesspeople who can’t use their mobiles or access the internet when they need to basic requirements for companies to work on the move, trade online, and connect with customers and suppliers, he said in a statement.

The findings also revealed the smallest companies weremore likely to suffer from a lack of 4G mobile coverage than larger firms. Just 41 per cent of employers with fewer than four staff, had 4G connectivity, compared to almost six in ten big businesses across the UK.

One solution put forward by Marshall was to relax planning laws for taller masts a quick win? for the next government to improve mobile coverage for the business community.


 
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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Praseeda Nair is the editorial director of Business Advice, and its sister publication for growing businesses, Real Business. She's an impassioned advocate for women in leadership, and likes to profile business owners, advisors and experts in the field of entrepreneurship and management.

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