Businesses are failing to respond to new customer enquiries, potentially losing £70bn of business a year across the UK, a report has found.
According to research by Vodafone, unanswered business enquiries cost an average company £30,000 this year, which equates to £70bn of potential business lost across the UK in 2010. This is up from costing a company £21,993 in 2009, said Vodafone.
Peter Kelly, enterprise director for Vodafone UK, said, "Businesses need to respond quickly and efficiently to their customers if they want to survive and thrive."
Four out of 10 businesses surveyed said they had cancelled a contract with a supplier in the last 12 months due to poor communication. More than a quarter of businesses surveyed said they expected a response from a prospective supplier within an hour.
"Unified communications solutions are becoming critical to enable companies to stay ahead of the competition, reduce communications costs and respond to customers more quickly," said Kelly.
More than a third of businesses polled expected social networks to become a more important way of finding suppliers in the future.
The Vodafone Critical Response Time Index research surveyed 1731 UK workers, including 728 senior managers in public and private sector organisations.