May 26, 2024

SME Research Reveals Cities & Industries that Struggle to Maintain a Work-Life Balance

Business people in office

A new report, which surveyed 1,000 small business owners and sole traders across the country has been carried out by financial experts, Takepayments Limited, unveiling a snapshot of the small business landscape in the UK. It uncovers key challenges for small businesses in 2020, including the work-life balance of those in different cities and industries.

Below you can find a list of the top cities & industries that struggle to maintain a healthy work-life balance. The data took in factors such as;

how they felt about their work-life balance
If they do more than 48 hours in a working week (over the legal limit)
If they take two days rest each week
If they looked after their staff/colleague’s wellbeing

Cities with a bad work-life balance:

1.Aberystwyth: 40%
2.Liverpool: 38%
3.Coventry: 30%
4.Bristol: 20%
5.Birmingham: 17%

Just under half of the people who have a business in Aberystwyth have declared that they struggle to maintain a healthy work-life balance. 40% of people here also did not take their two-day rest periods in a working week.

In Liverpool, It was found that 32% of people who own a business worked more than a 48-hour working week, which is OVER the legal limit for your health and wellbeing, according to the citizen’s advice.

In Coventry, a staggering 70% of business owners are putting their colleagues’ health first and making sure their checking in with their health and wellbeing. However, 30% struggle to maintain their own work-life balance.

It was also found that 1 in 6 do not take any rest days in the UK when running their own business and almost half (46%) are struggling to forward plan for their business because of the current political landscape.

Industries with a bad work-life balance

1.Recruitment & HR
2.Public Services & Administration
3.Social Care
4.Teaching and Education
5.Transport and logistics
6.Publishing & Journalism

Business Owners in Recruitment & HR are amongst the worst for their work-life balance with half of those surveyed saying they do not feel they had a good work-life balance from their work and personal life. Over a quarter (34%) said that they are not having at least two days off in the week for a rest period.

Second to recruitment & HR was public services & administration with 15% of business owners struggling to maintain their work-life balance. However, over half (54%) say that they are making sure to support and look after their colleagues and staff’s mental health.

Nearly half (48%) who run a business within transport and logistics are finding they claim back some of their work-life balance by sticking to a 48 hour week, managing health with time limits on their day.

For those in publishing and journalism, 40% have claimed they do not have at least two days of rest (non-working) per week, adding potential pressure to burning out after some time. Over a third (30%) do say they stick to a 48-hour working week or less, however, to maintain some balance.

For those owning a business in retail, 28% are struggling to take at least two rest days in the week, helping to support their staff and run the business.

Industry percentage of business owners struggling with to maintain a healthy work-life balance:

  • Recruitment & HR (50%)
  • Public Services & Administration (15%)
  • Social Care (14%)
  • Teaching and Education (13%)
  • Transport and logistics (11%)
  • Publishing & Journalism (10%)
  • Retail (6%)

The full report including information on other topics such as finance can be found here: