A MYOB study has revealed that small to medium businesses are dissatisfied with the government’s support when it comes to helping business succeed.

As this year’s federal election draws closer, dissatisfaction levels have dropped from the record-high found in the previous study completed in May, which revealed 57 per cent of SMEs were dissatisfied. The latest study found 54 per cent were dissatisfied while 32 per cent were neither satisfied nor dissatisfied, the latter measure having risen from 25 per cent in the previous study.

MYOB CEO Tim Reed said there’s a likely relationship between the slight fall in SMEs’ dissatisfaction with the Federal Government and their increasing confidence in the domestic economy.

“Independent business owners and managers continue to call for tax reform, deregulation and the reduction of red tape. The significant level of paperwork and compliance required by the government is a common pain point, hence Victoria recently appointing its own red tape commissioner. Perhaps this should be expanded to a national posting. More work must be done to help SMEs simplify their regulatory commitments,” he said.

“GST and BAS simplification tops the list of initiatives that could turn an election on its head, closely followed by the abolishment of the carbon tax. With fuel prices noted by SMEs as their top pressure point, it’s no wonder 63% said they would vote for the party that proposed more investment in city transport infrastructure. The Federal Government has plenty of fodder for policy consideration in the run up to the election this year.”

When comparing results by length of time in business, more than half of the start-ups were dissatisfied with government support (51 per cent), a significant rise from 39 per cent in July. In that prior report, start-ups were the most satisfied, at 33 per cent. This is now 13 per cent. However, operators in established businesses were the most dissatisfied (61 per cent) and those in establishing businesses were the most satisfied (18 per cent).