Interim Small Business Commissioner Philip King writes to Prompt Payment Code steering group members

Successful Prompt Payment Code relaunch – support and next steps

On 20 January the reformed Prompt Payment Code was launched by colleagues at BEIS. My team strongly supported a highly successful press release and social media campaign. The buy-in to the reforms from small business stakeholders, trade press and national media platforms has been gratifying to see. It endorses the decision to reform the Code and move to a framework where payment within 30 days to small business suppliers is the default way of working.

My team has seen a significant increase in correspondence, enquiries and applications for Code membership since 20 January. In the last week they have received 273 enquiries about the Code reforms, as well as 27 new sign-ups, from a wide spectrum of business sectors, including environment and agriculture, consultancy and construction. Since my office took over administration of the Code in March 2020, 629 new companies have become Code signatories, without any widespread publicity or promotion. Now the Code reforms are in place, we’re hopeful that the total will increase further.

I’m confident that BEIS’ continued readiness to support and amplify messages about the Code and its benefits, to companies of all sizes, will keep it in the forefront of the minds of UK business leaders. As a result, I would like to do all I can, alongside my staff, to continue promoting the Code as much as possible.

I regularly update Small Business Minister Paul Scully on both the success of the Code and the wider payment remit of my Office, alongside BEIS officials at the highest level. But this is not something that my team and I can do in isolation. As a PPC steering group member, I’d like to look to you and your organisation’s marketing impact, to help us grow the Code further and attract more new signatories. I intend to make the same request of trade association leaders, in sectors where representation on the Code is still low.

Prompt payment practice, to businesses of all sizes, should be the default, ethical choice for companies doing business in the UK. As we continue to negotiate uncertainty due to public health and EU transition concerns, prompt payment has a major part to play in helping the country to build back better.

I’m willing to support your organisation with webinars, quotes, articles and write-ups associated with the reformed Code, and I’d welcome your ideas for how its requirements can be best promoted. The contact details for my communications manager leading on this work are supplied at the end of this note. Do get in touch and let me know if I can help.

With best wishes,

Philip King

Interim Small Business Commissioner


For communication and marketing enquiries please contact Ian Dexter, Communications Manager with responsibility for the Prompt Payment Code, on or 0121 221 2510.