Opinion Poll: Small Businesses Hire Diverse Entry-Level Workforce

Small Business Majority
Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Small businesses make up 99 percent of businesses in the United States and employ about 56 million of the nation’s private sector workers. New scientific polling shows small business hiring of lower-level employees is diverse and varies geographically, but more can be done to increase diversity in the hiring of upper-management employees.

Main Findings

Small business employees in non-management positions represent diverse workforce: Seven in 10 small businesses have at least one female employee (69%), 24% have at least one Hispanic employee, 18% have at least one African American employee, 8% have at least one employee with a disability, 6% have at least one American Indian or Alaskan native employee, 5% have at least one Asian or Pacific Islander employee and 24% report having at least one other non-white employee.

Small businesses employ diverse entry-level workforce

Small business hiring varies geographically: Diversity among small business employees is dependent on the location of the business, as owners hire from the community around them. For example, employers in Mississippi or Louisiana are more likely to have an African American (47% and 45%, respectively) employed, while employers in New Mexico are more likely to hire at least one Hispanic worker (62%). 

Small business hiring reflects the demographics of their communities

Small business owners play key role in the diversity of their workforce: Women are more likely to have at least one female staffer (82%), and non-white owners are more likely to have at least one African American (47%) or Hispanic (41%) worker. 

Small business owners play key role in diversity of their own workforce

Press Release