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Statistics Canada third quarter update on small business

Statistics Canada released their third quarter report in September.

From July 2 to Aug. 6, representatives from businesses across Canada were invited to take part in an online questionnaire about how COVID-19 is affecting their business and business expectations moving forward.

The cost of going green

When it comes to environmental practices, Statistics Canada found that 59.9 per cent of businesses had implemented at least one environmental practice but the date showed smaller businesses were less likely to do so than larger businesses.

Fifty seven per cent of businesses with 1 to 19 employees reported that they either had at least one environmental practice in place or had plans to implement one, 75.4 per cent of businesses with 20 to 99 employees and 76 per cent of businesses with 100 or more employees said the same.

The most commonly implemented environmental practice was reducing waste, and larger businesses were more likely to have this environmental practice in place.

While 49.7 per cent of businesses with 20 to 99 employees and 53 per cent of businesses with 100 or more employees planned to reduce waste or had already implemented the practice of reducing waste, businesses with 1 to 19 employees were less likely to do so.

The report says that although 58.7 per cent of businesses reported that there were no major barriers to adopting more green practices, the most commonly reported reason businesses could not adopt green practices was the lack of financial resources. Fifteen per cent of businesses with one to 19 employees and 9.5 per cent of businesses with 20 to 99 employees reported that they did not have the financial resources to adopt more green practices. In contrast, 7.6 per cent of businesses with 100 or more employees reported the same reason.

Keeping it local

Small businesses less likely to outsource tasks, projects or short contracts.

Some businesses have begun outsourcing certain tasks, projects, or short contracts by paying freelancers, “gig” workers or other businesses. Examples of these activities might include delivery driving, cleaning, translation, and web or graphic design. Increasingly, third-party online platforms, websites or applications can be used to outsource these activities.

Numbers showed that small businesses were less likely to outsource tasks, projects or short contracts compared with large businesses.

Twenty percent of businesses with 1 to 19 employees reported that they outsourced activities to freelancers, ‘gig’ workers or other businesses in the last 12 months, while 28.9 per cent of businesses with 20 to 99 employees and 34.1 per cent in businesses with 100 or more employees, said the same.

If businesses were outsourcing tasks, projects or short contracts, the proportion of businesses that used third-party digital platforms, applications or websites were similar in all employment sizes.

Small Business