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3 Growth Challenges Facing Small Businesses Right Now

3 Growth Challenges Facing Small Businesses Right Now
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Hiring is simultaneously one of the biggest opportunities and one of the biggest challenges small businesses have. Expanding your staff is necessary for taking your company to the next level of growth, and the right hire can help your sales skyrocket. On the other hand, it can be incredibly difficult to find the perfect candidate, and if that person turns out to be the wrong choice, it can cost a lot of time and money to replace him or her.

Based on recently released studies and reports, here's what you need to know about the current state of small business hiring and growth, and what challenges business owners are dealing with. [See Related Story: Hiring in the Digital Age: What's Next for Recruiting?]

Small businesses were responsible for nearly half of all new U.S. jobs in 2015, and yet the vast majority said that the hiring process takes longer and is more difficult than they expect, found an ADP survey. ADP polled more than 1,000 owners and managers of companies that had fewer than 50 employees, finding that the biggest specific challenges were longer hiring cycles (34 percent), a loss of productivity (28 percent) and new employees not meeting expectations (25 percent).

Business growth means more sales and more hires, but what happens when that growth doesn't follow the expected trajectory? Research by Epicor Software Corporation revealed that nearly 90 percent of global midsize businesses (those with 100 to 999 employees) experienced growth that wasn't in line with their plans last year, resulting in a serious crisis in confidence. Specifically, 48 percent of business leaders said they worry that if growth is not properly planned and prepared for, their companies won't be able to maintain their quality and customer satisfaction.

Today's employers know that it's a job seeker's market out there, but businesses on a budget may find it difficult to keep up with the rising costs of benefits that will attract top candidates. In a report that surveyed more than 1,600 employers, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. found that high-performing organizations are able to strategically manage these costs by developing measurable goals for their benefits and compensation strategies. Additionally, a greater focus on employee wellness, as opposed to health care, can help employers keep medical expenses lower in the long run.

Need more help with your small business hiring? This Business News Daily guide has tips for finding the right person for the job.

Nicole Fallon

Nicole received her Bachelor's degree in Media, Culture and Communication from New York University. She began freelancing for Business News Daily in 2010 and joined the team as a staff writer three years later. Nicole served as the site's managing editor until January 2018, and briefly ran Business.com's copy and production team. Follow her on Twitter.