Scientific Opinion Poll: Wisconsin Small Business Owners Hiring, but Struggle to Find Right Candidates
Wisconsin small business owners are hiring, but those doing so are having hard time finding candidates with right background; support programs such as apprentice and internships to identify and increase number of qualified workers
A scientific opinion poll released today shows a majority of Wisconsin small business owners are hiring, but are having a hard time finding qualified candidates and support several solutions to help address the state and nation's job skills gap.
The poll, conducted Sept. 5-18, 2014, by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research on behalf of Small Business Majority, found a majority of Wisconsin small business owners have hired new employees in the past three years, but say finding job candidates with the right background has been the biggest barrier they face to hiring new employees. Fifty-five percent of small employers have difficulty in finding candidates with the right kind of job experience. What's more, 47 percent say they struggle to identify candidates with the right education, skills or training.
"At our small business, we aim to hire experienced and knowledgeable entry-level employees. We know that most college students need some training to get to that point," said Craig Treadway Vice President at JT Engineering, Inc. in Green Bay, Wis. "That's why we've developed a summer program and an internship program to prepare students for their careers. This investment pays off for us, because when we look for new hires, former interns are often our first pick. More internship programs like ours are needed to ensure that young people have the skills they need to enter the workforce."
Small businesses support a number of solutions to address this problem:
- 49 percent of entrepreneurs say they are interested in employing and developing apprentices through a formal, structured training program.
- 53 percent support implementing a structured, on-the-job training program for employees.
- 58 percent of small business owners say they would work with an organization that coordinates with local schools, community colleges, businesses and community organizations to provide job training and placement.
- 49 percent of small business owners are interested in working with other businesses in their industry to develop programs to increase the number of qualified job applicants in their area.
- 68 percent of small employers say they would consider seeking out and hiring promising and trainable workers who may not yet have the required experience or certifications, but with an employer's assistance, could obtain them within a specific timeframe.
"As the most recent jobs report shows, unemployment numbers continue to decline as small business owners across the country increase their hiring in the midst of our slowly-growing economy" said Jesse Greenberg, Small Business Majority's Director, Midwest & West. "By implementing programs to help identify, train and retain qualified candidates, we'll create more opportunities for our workforce and help our entrepreneurs continue to grow the economy."
For the full poll report, please visit: Opinion Poll: Small Business Owners are Hiring, but are Struggling to Find the Right Job Candidates
About Small Business Majority
Small Business Majority is a national small business advocacy organization, founded and run by small business owners to focus on solving the biggest problems facing America's 28 million small businesses today. Since 2005, we have actively engaged small business owners and policymakers in support of public policy solutions, and have delivered information and resources to entrepreneurs that promote small business growth and drive a strong, sustainable economy. We are a team of more than 30 working from our 11 offices in Washington, D.C. and 9 states, with a network of more than 45,000 small business owners and more than 2,000 business organizations, along with a formal strategic partnership program of more than 125 business organizations, enabling us to reach more than 500,000 entrepreneurs. Our extensive scientific polling, focus groups and economic research help us educate and inform policymakers, the media and other stakeholders about issues including taxes, healthcare, access to capital, entrepreneurship, workforce development, clean energy and immigration. Learn more about us on our website and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.