Business services


Services enterprises attributed to "other business services" (NACE Rev. 1 74) cover a wide range of activities. On the 3-digit-level there are eight sub-groups, on the 4-digit-level the number of sub-groups rises to 15. Activities covered in this sector are:


Rev. 1
Business activity
74 Other business services
74.1 Legal, accounting, book-keeping and auditing activities; tax consultancy; market research and public opinion polling; business and management consultancy; holdings
74.2 Architectural and engineering activities and related technical consultancy
74.3 Technical testing and analysis
74.4 Advertising
74.5 Labour recruitment an provision of personnel
74.6 Investigation and security activities
74.7 Industrial cleaning
74.8 Miscellaneous business activities not else classified (for example: photographic activities, packaging activities, secretarial and translation activities)


Main reasons for selection

  • Economic importance of the sector: Business services is a huge sector both in terms of employment and value added. More than two million enterprises employ close to 13 million people and create a value added of about 485 billion Euro. This is the largest amount of value added among all sectors covered by the e-Business W@tch, and the third largest number of employees after health and retail.
  • Importance of SMEs: SMEs play a very important role in the business services sectors, compared to most of the manufacturing industries. They make up for 99% of all enterprises, they produce 60% of the sector's turnover and employ more than half of the persons working in the sector.
  • E-business intensive sector: Survey results of the e-Business W@tch show that the importance of e-business is above EU-average in the business services sector. In addition, the gap between SMEs and large enterprises with respect to e-business activities is less pronounced in this sector than in many other sectors. Business services could therefore serve as an e-business model for SMEs from other sectors.
  • Importance of ICT for the sector: For those parts of the business services sector that are based on information and knowledge, ICT and e-business have significant implications: The efficiencies of accessing, compiling and distributing information are considerably enhanced. The Internet puts any sort of information at the fingertips of connected knowledge workers. This applies to information necessary for producing the services (e.g. legal documents, research) as well as to new business opportunities (e.g. through tender databases).