Growing up in a small town in Arkansas, I often walked to school with my older sisters. Our journey took us down the main street, which was always a source of great interest to me with the shop owners out in front cleaning windows and preparing sidewalk bargain displays. One of those shop owners was a tall, gangly man named Sam, the proprietor of the Ben Franklin five-and-dime store. Sam always had an encouraging word for us and sometimes a bag of freshly popped corn or, on rare occasions, Spanish peanuts. From these humble beginnings, who would have guessed Sam Walton would go on to become one of the largest employers in the US with stores in virtually every community in our country?
Today, success has been made a little easier with support of organizations like the Small Business Administration (SBA), which helps Americans start, build and grow businesses. In late March, Zenefits proudly joined the SBA Technology Coalition as a Founding Member to help small businesses leverage technology to drive growth and differentiation.
Since 1963, every U.S. President has declared the first week in May as National Small Business Week and there is growing recognition of how important small businesses are to the national economy. For example, between 2009-Q2 2015, over 4 million net new jobs were created by small businesses, representing 67% of total U.S. job growth.
Many entrepreneurs start their business with a dream. However, running a small business is a big job and there are lots of tasks that can get in the way of realizing that dream. For example, new business owners are often overwhelmed by the time, paperwork and hassle involved with things like payroll, benefits, hiring, compliance, etc. In fact, the SBA estimates small business owners spend as much as 25% of their time on employment-related paperwork alone.
At Zenefits, our focus is helping entrepreneurs bypass these obstacles to success. By connecting the disparate HR systems required to run a small business, Zenefits can help save business owners thousands of hours of paperwork. That equates to less time on tedious tasks and more time and energy on building and growing their business.
In conjunction with National Small Business Week, we are recognizing some of our Small Business customers throughout the month of May. We are proud to play a role in helping a diverse range of businesses, from the makers at Brooklyn Tweed and Kemo Sabe, to the innovators at BioPoint and BEI Net.works, to the life-changers at Edify and HandsOn Bay Area. We hope you’ll read their stories and join us in congratulating them for following their dreams.
This month, we’re also taking the Zenefits message on the road with our “Back to Business Tour.” Our goal is to celebrate, inspire and educate small business owners and entrepreneurs about how Zenefits can streamline their HR processes and get back valuable time to focus on growing their business. The first stops are Austin (May 19), Atlanta (June 21) and Denver (June 29). Check out www.zenefits.com/events for more information and to register for these free events. We hope you’ll join us in your city.
If nothing else, please be sure to support your local small businesses this month … and every month. By encouraging and helping small businesses, we all succeed.