What is the one-stop shop, which should “simplify” the life of businesses?

The government presented on Wednesday the one-stop shop for business formalities, a website bringing together all the administrative procedures for businesses and which will be compulsory from 2023, although self-employed entrepreneurs are warning about the “nebulous” nature of the site. “The one-stop shop allows all companies to declare all their formalities online with the organizations with which they will be in contact throughout their life, namely at the time of their creation, on the occasion of any development or during the cessation of activity”, indicates the Ministry of the Economy in a press release.

Compulsory for all business procedures from 2023

The use of this one-stop shop, already accessible online (formalites.entreprises.gouv.fr), will become mandatory for all business procedures from January 1, 2023. On this date, the ministry specifies, it “will replace the six networks of business formalities centers that have existed since the 1980s”, and which were managed by various bodies including Chambers of Commerce and Industry, clerks and Urssaf.

Provided for by the Pacte law of 2019, “the creation of this single site aims to facilitate the procedures for companies which have been complex until now”, continues the press release, recalling that 56 forms previously existed for the procedures of companies. “From now on, a single dynamic online form is used to make all the declarations”, assures Bercy.

Dematerialization of procedures

The device also fulfills an objective of dematerialization of procedures, while “70% of formalities were still carried out by paper”, assures the ministry. However, it raises the concern of several organizations. The president of the National Council of commercial court clerks, Thomas Denfer, thus recalled in October that the “digital divide does not spare companies” and that dematerialization risks causing “misunderstanding, remoteness and exclusion”.

Auto-entrepreneurs, for whom the procedures were previously relatively “basic”, will now have to go through 39 screens, like other companies, instead of six screens previously, according to François Hurel, the president of the Union des auto-entrepreneurs ( UAE), which denounces a “nebulous and counter-intuitive registration process, requiring at least nearly two hours of time to be finalized”.

“The risk is that people will declare anything or even not declare themselves at all,” warns François Hurel to AFP. “The content of the formalities does not change, we do not add complexity”, defended the ministry during a press conference, while ensuring that it would be possible to obtain aid in certain public establishments or by telephone. “The advantage of having a single device is that it can be easily upgraded according to user feedback”, he added, specifying that the system could be “improved”.