The banking industry had initially planned to abolish cheques by 2018, however consumer groups decided that they did not like this change very much, and pressured the banks into not getting rid of cheques. However, the British Chamber of Commerce has recently stated that getting rid of cheques would solve a problem in the small and medium-sized enterprise sector, because they are seeing many payments come in late, which is a serious problem for many of these companies.
The BCC want to see the idea about the abolition of cheques go forward, and say that it is time for this antiquated method of paying for things to be put out to pasture. They said that it is something that is damaging small businesses in the country, as payment comes in so late. It is estimated that only 20 percent of small businesses say that they want to be paid through this method, yet nearly 70 percent of small businesses are receiving payment via cheque.
The question that has to be asked is what is more important, small and medium-sized enterprises to succeed, or people to be comfortable in the method that they are using to pay. Some people are not keen to move to other payment methods, and still want to pay by cheque. Unfortunately, there is no particularly easy answer to the question, and it seems as if the problem with late payments is going to continue for some time to come.
The BCC recently conducted research which showed that around 95 percent of small companies have to put up with their consumers making payments late. 25 percent of small businesses say that around 40 percent of their payments arrive late.