The launch of a register that provides transparency around big business payment time has been welcomed by The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Bruce Billson.
The Payment Times Reports Register publishes information about the payment policies of businesses with a turnover of more than $100 million. It currently reveals the payment policies of more than 6,000 businesses.
Mr Billson says the new register is an important first step in addressing late payments, which continues to be a huge issue for small businesses.
“The register reveals that more than 30% of invoices are being paid late by big business for what has already been earned by small business. That’s incredibly disappointing,” he says.
“According to the register, average payment terms are sitting at 37 days – when 30 days is the maximum time any small business should be waiting for their invoice to be paid and some leading larger businesses are committing to pay small business suppliers within a week.”
He says the manufacturing industry has the most work to do in terms of lifting its average standard payment terms of 50 days, while media and telecoms industry is among the best performers, pledging to pay their suppliers within 25 days on average.
“My office will be keeping an eye on future reports to gauge trends and do what we can to ensure big businesses are living up to the information provided on the register,” Mr Billson says.
“In the meantime, I encourage small businesses to engage with the register and make informed choices about who they do business with.”