Around the country, small business owners are struggling to find qualified employees. In fact, some 40% of American employers cite lack of skills as the No. 1 reason for entry-level job vacancies, especially among young job candidates. Meanwhile, the youth unemployment rate in our country remains considerably high after the aftermath of the Great Recession. Though some small businesses may want to help address this problem while identifying potential talent, they often don’t have the resources to sponsor an internship or mentoring program.
The skills gap is a significant hurdle to growth for most businesses in the United States. And while this gap is well documented in sectors like manufacturing, which had 353,000 open jobs per month in 2016 (through August), it is not as well known that small employers face a similar shortage of well-qualified workers.
It’s no secret that big businesses struggle to find skilled and credentialed employees. But this issue also impacts our nation’s job creators: small businesses. New scientific polling shows small businesses around the country believe lack of education, experience and training is one of biggest challenges they face when it comes to hiring and employment, and they’re willing to act to ensure they have the skilled workers they need to run their businesses.
Fresh Kutz opened its doors in North Hollywood in 2008 with the goal of offering all customers premium services by top-level barbers in a modern barbershop. Since its inception, owner Brian Portillo knew he would face several challenges as the community has a crime rate above the national average. Not only did he want to open his business in the community in which he grew up, but he wanted to create positive social impact while running his business.
Scientific opinion poll finds small business owners are hiring, but those doing so are having a hard time finding candidates with the right background; they support programs such as apprentice and internships to identify and increase the number of qualified workers.
As we enjoy the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, here at Small Business Majority we’re celebrating a very successful 2014. And with a new Congress coming to Washington in January, we’re looking forward to continuing our efforts on the small business front in 2015. See below for some of our biggest accomplishments from the past year.