The introduction of statutory reporting practices and performance in late 2017 added teeth to the Prompt Payment Code, but I note, with despondence, that of 17 companies that fell foul of the Code recently, one was temporarily suspended, and another removed. Does that simply mean that the one removed no longer needs to comply, or am I missing something?
I first wrote about prompt payment in June 2016, some 8 years after the original Prompt Payment Code had been introduced for government procurement. It seemed like a great way to remove blockages and oil the investment and innovation that industry needs to be world-leading.
Today’s Code asks that 95% of a member company’s supplier invoices are paid within a 60 – day period. In 2016 I envisaged the impact that prompt payment might have on the British economy: ‘there would be a greater sense of security and predictability for companies, freeing them to invest with confidence in new product development, new processes and new people. In turn that would lead to money moving round the economy faster, instead of languishing on balance sheets; which means even more companies being paid on time, more confidence and greater potential for economic growth.’
Never has this country been in a position where such an initiative could be of more value.
According to a recent article in The Grocer, top payment performers include Tesco, Marks & Spencer, Asda, Waitrose General Mills UK and Sainsbury’s.
My vision is to create a virtuous circle that starts with more companies making the decision to pay in a fair and timely way… and to make a crucial difference for all of us.
At Fourayes we’re not a member of the Prompt Payment Code but we do aim to pay our suppliers within 30 days end of month. We’ll beat that where we can. It’s how we can play a part. Now multiply that by the 5.7 million businesses in the UK.
Makes you think doesn’t it.
Managing Director of Fourayes, vice-chairman of British Apples & Pears, Fruitician and Mad Scientist.