SMEs are owed nearly £34 billion in overdue payments and this figure explains why the Government recently launched its “Get Paid!” campaign.  It hopes the campaign will help SMEs to reduce the amount of time they have to wait for bills to be paid.  The Government also supports the ICM’s “Prompt Payment Code” which encourages signatories to the Code to pay its suppliers on time.  However, currently only a  handful of main contractors have signed up to the Code.  Also, industry gossip suggests that a few ‘less honourable’ contractors are not complying with the revised Construction Act rules on retention and that sub-contractors continue to encounter other examples of ‘sharp practice’.  Therefore it would seem that a small part of the construction sector has not fully embraced the spirit of either the “Get Paid!” campaign or the Code.  Perhaps this may change if public sector employers ask their supply chain members to sign up to and comply with the Code.