Welcome to the Small Business Rundown. Each day, we bring you stories that impact small business owners and their workforce.
Another week draws to close. Before you head out to enjoy the weekend, pause to consider Yelp’s new data on the slowing growth of local economies — and what it means for small businesses. If you’re looking for something a little less depressing to kick off your Friday night, take a crash course in how to compliantly hire a foreign worker! And if that doesn’t do it for you, consider why you should up your investments in technology. TGIF!
Local economy growth slowing, raising concerns
In nearly every part of the country, indicators show that local economic growth is flagging, according to new data from Yelp. The report signals trouble for traditional brick-and-mortar companies across a wide range of sectors. Interestingly enough, the data also showed that “food and nightlife businesses had declining business in every state except Wyoming, Nevada, the Dakotas, and Vermont.”
The Number: 5. According to Yelp’s data, local economy growth has weakened for 5 straight quarters.
The Quote: “If Yelp’s data is correct, it shows economic prospects are deteriorating for brick-and-mortar businesses of all kinds.”
Thinking about hiring a foreign worker? Read this!
For many organizations, the prospect of hiring any worker is daunting, let alone hiring a foreign national. While the process can be long and require careful attention to details, it doesn’t have to be fraught. Choosing the correct visa, filling out the correct employment verification and IRS forms and avoiding common and costly mistakes are all important but achievable steps in the process.
The Number: 3. When sponsoring the work visa application of a foreign worker, it’s imperative to choose the correct type of visa from the 3 different options.
The Quote: “However, if you plan properly, the work authorization and on-boarding processes, even when hiring a foreign employee, can be as smooth as they will be for a U.S. worker.”
SBOs believe investing in technology critical to success
When it comes to staying competitive in today’s business environment, many small business owners agree that investing in updated technology is a key component of a solid business plan. New data from a recent survey indicates that savvy SBOs know that new technology alone is not necessarily enough to drive growth, however. In fact 69% of respondents indicate that they focus on hiring tech-adept employees to maximize their investments.
The Number: 40%. Investing in technology pay off, according to the 40% of small business owners who believe that tech spending is responsible for their growth over the last year.
The Quote: “Technology is only as effective as the employees that implement it and the customers that benefit from it.”