By Jason Bramwell
Thirty-four percent of US small business owners and fifty-five percent of midsized business owners say they expect their staffing levels to remain the same in 2013, according to a hiring forecast by Sage North America
While 34 percent of small businesses (one to nineteen employees) won't likely be hiring this year, 34 percent report they either hired or will hire this year, while 7 percent say they'll decrease their staff, the Sage SMB Hiring Outlook Survey
According to the survey, the biggest factor influencing whether a small business has hired or will plan to hire – perhaps not surprisingly – is increased demand for its products or services (81 percent). Conversely, the biggest factor influencing those companies that haven't hired or aren't planning on hiring in 2013 is lack of demand for its products or services (37 percent).
"If you ask small or midsized business owners, they will tell you that demand is one of the primary drivers behind many of their business decisions, including hiring," Connie Certusi, executive vice president and general manager at Sage Small Business Solutions, said in a press release. "In previous Sage surveys, small and midsized businesses have repeatedly reported that taxes and regulations are a roadblock for their business growth. However, what this survey indicates is that while taxes and regulations are factors that influence hiring, the number one driver is a demand for products and services – or lack thereof."
Other factors influencing small businesses to decrease or to keep their current workforce the same size include:
- Economic outlook uncertainty (39 percent)
- Non-health-care-related costs of doing business (26 percent)
- Uncertainty in Washington, DC (20 percent)
Of those small companies that have hired or are planning on hiring this year, 73 percent will staff with full-time employees, compared to 31 percent that will hire part-time employees. Eight percent plan to hire contract workers, and 15 percent plan to hire seasonal workers.
About the survey:
The survey was conducted by Sage North America in May. A total of 973 people completed the web-based survey. The margin of error is +/- 3 percent with a confidence level of 95 percent.