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Is 2016 the Best Year Yet for Small Business Hiring?

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By Ephrat Livni, Esq. on January 20, 2016 2:57 PM

For many years it has been an employer's market. The economic downturn of the last decade put people out of work at worst and on a tortuously slow career track at best.

These have been the years of making do for employees as corporate America has slashed jobs and replaced them with contract gigs, all of which is good news for you, the small business owner, according to The Daily Herald. Why? Because big business is no longer attractive to many American workers and, generally speaking, they are not expecting much anymore.

The Small Biz Advantage

"Big business no longer has its allure," Cathleen Faerber of The Wellesley Group, a search firm, says of today's job market."So many people have been burned by the callousness of corporate America that smaller businesses should be better able to attract the best and the brightest."

Sound delightful? That's not all. The rest of the "good news" is that American workers expect very little. Salaries are not going up and you can pick up a talented professional once beyond your price range for a song now.

"We have not seen rises in salaries," says Jean Kripton Durham, owner of the Chicago employment agency Kripton Durham. She explains that candidates who have been ousted from jobs in recent years are more realistic about salary levels than before the economic downturn.

But Kripton Durham points out that you, as the small business owner, need to have something to offer, even if it is not money. You have an advantage as a small business if you are "clear on what makes the company stand out" in the marketplace.

How Can You Stand Out?

Employers who offer respect, reliability, stability, a congenial environment that is truly collaborative might be able to snag great employees that would have been attracted to big companies before.

"In the '70s," Faerber says, "you knew the company would take care of you. But people today look at job opportunities with their eyes wide open. Candidates want to be treated right. They want that sense of (job) security that privately owned businesses can offer. Smaller businesses have great opportunities and more stability." If that is how you see your business and you are ready to hire, now is the time, she says, and that is your pitch.

Consult With Counsel

If you have questions about hiring or any other aspect of business operations, speak to a commercial attorney.

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