Small businesses are uncertain where they stand with regards to employment laws and other regulations, it has been revealed.

The National Audit Office (NAO) has reported that many companies struggle to understand the developments on regulatory reform, implying that they may benefit from HR and corporate responsibility conferences.

It was recognised that while UK firms understand the purpose of such changes, they can prove "unnecessarily burdensome" for small businesses.

The NAO said there are as many as 60 regulations that companies have to constantly consider, which are set by a number of different bodies.

It also noted that departments are "not communicating effectively with businesses about regulation".

This comes after the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) revealed that the new employment legislation will come at a cost of £22.87 billion to UK companies.

Earlier this week, the BCC's Employment Timeline showed that over the next four years until April 2015, there will be a wide variety of employment law changes, with seven planned to be implemented during the remainder of 2011.

Posted by Colette Paxton