Wednesday, 02 September 2015

Patchy broadband damaging rural businesses

Patchy broadband could be damaging Cumbrian rural businesses according to new research from business leaders.


A poll of over 1,000 members of the Institute of Directors revealed that just 34 per cent of rural business leaders are satisfied with the speed of their fixed-line downloads.

This compares poorly to the rate amongst all IoD members, which stacks up at 57 per cent.

The research also showed that faster broadband means more jobs, investment and greater productivity.

Faster internet would improve productivity of 83 per cent of companies and encourage 13 per cent to hire new staff.

Darrell Matthews, Regional Director of the Institute of Directors North West, said: “Fast, reliable internet connections are essential to a modern business – but far too often our existing infrastructure falls short.

“Increasing internet speeds would encourage many employers to invest in expanding their businesses and taking on more staff, giving the economy a welcome boost.

“The digital age is about flexibility and efficiency and we must apply this to our businesses.

“Rural businesses in particular are missing out on those advantages because the landline and mobile networks simply aren’t up to scratch in large parts of the countryside, limiting their potential.

“They operate at a lower level of productivity, have a reduced chance of investment and offer fewer job opportunities. There is a lot of work to be done before the service provided in the real world matches up to the rhetoric coming from Westminster and Whitehall.”

Poor mobile download speeds were also a major issue for rural businesses, with a paltry 13 per cent reporting satisfactory service.

Have your say

Satellite broadband is a viable alternative for rural areas - needs no big infrastructure investment - and works well for me in all weathers.

Posted by Bill Roberts on 20 March 2013 at 13:42

we need a better intenet connection far too much downtime is wasted waiting for pages to load

Posted by Garry Phillips on 17 March 2013 at 18:25

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