RICHMOND, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Mar 18, 2014) -  Sage North America today announced the findings of a survey that focuses on the impact that recent severe weather had on Canadian small businesses during the winter of 2013. The Sage Canadian Small Business Weather Survey was conducted in February 2014 among 459 Canadian businesses and has a confidence level of 95 per cent with an error rate of +/- 4 per cent.

The survey's key findings include:

  • Twenty five per cent of Canadian small businesses said the winter weather has negatively affected their business.
  • The most common responses from Canadian small businesses to the adverse weather has been to reduce headcount and reduce employee hours.
  • Twenty per cent responded that this winter's weather has been worse than recent years.
    • The Atlantic and central regions were most likely to say this winter's weather has been worse.
  • The biggest problems resulting from this year's winter weather are lower revenue, lower productivity, and lower profit.
  • In Canada, the negative affect has lasted longer than it has in the U.S.
  • Only 25 per cent of Canadian businesses had a bad-weather plan in place this winter.
    • The most common type of bad-weather plan is an employee communication plan (75 per cent among those who have a plan).

Careful planning is key to successfully navigating severe winter conditions and business emergencies in general. Here are a few helpful ideas from Sage for weatherproofing your business: Ten Tips to Prepare Your Business for a Weather Emergency.

About The Sage Group plc
We provide small and medium-sized organizations with a range of easy-to-use, secure, and efficient business management software and services -- from accounting and payroll to enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, and payments. Our customers receive continuous advice and support through our global network of local experts to help them solve their business problems, giving them the confidence to achieve their business ambitions. Formed in 1981, Sage was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1989 and entered the FTSE 100 in 1999. Sage has over 6 million customers and more than 12,700 employees in 24 countries covering the UK & Ireland, mainland Europe, North America, South Africa, Australia, Asia, and Brazil.

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Yvonne Yuen