We kick off the week by looking at Arizona’s move to attract workers with a new professional license program and the lack of big bank financing for SMBs.
Welcome to the Small Business Run Down. Every day, we bring you stories and trends that impact small business owners and their workforce.
We kick off the week by looking at Arizona’s move to attract workers with a new professional license match program, the lack of big bank financing for SMBs and the benefits of creating a website for your business. Have a great Monday, everyone.
Arizona removes red tape, plans to recognize out-of-state occupational licenses
Pack your bags, Honey, we’re moving to Tucson. Arizona recently became the first state in the country to recognize out-of-state professional licenses. The new law confers an automatic professional license on anyone who has held their credential, in good standing, for at least a year and establishes residency in the Grand Canyon state. Proponents of the law say that it will remove considerable barriers for doctors, nurses, teachers, estheticians, home inspectors or anyone else who requires credentialing.
The Number: 7.5 million. The Department of Labor offered $7.5 million in grants in 2018 to help states streamline licensing requirements to promote portability in the workforce.
The Quote: “You don’t lose your skills simply because you pack up a U-Haul truck and make the decision to move to Arizona.”
Big banks still pass over small businesses, survey finds
Despite efforts in recent months on the part of big banks to cater to small businesses, SMBs still receive a relatively small amount of financing from these institutions, according to a survey by Funding Circle. Stringent requirements and longer processing times give fintech companies and other nontraditional lenders an advantage when it comes to wooing small business clients. The survey found that 27% of businesses with one to nine employees used an online lender in 2017.
The Number: 0.7% Small business lending accounts for only 0.7% of the balance sheets of all US banks.
The Quote: “Small business lending is simply less profitable for a bank than some of their other business lines. This is not an area where you can succeed unless you really focus on it.”
Nearly half of all small businesses don’t have a website
Even though internet usage is up among American adults, 46% of small businesses still don’t have a dedicated website for their company. Though some of these small businesses have social media accounts, a business website can go a long way towards cultivating credibility, maximizing sales and market efforts and increasing a company’s ability to track key metrics in real time.
The Number: 23.6. According to a review by MIT, Americans now spend an average of 23.6 hours–nearly a whole day–per week on the internet.
The Quote: “[C]ompanies that blog at least 16 times per month has 4.5 times more leads compare to those who blog 0-4 times per month.”
Shedding some light on the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC)
Veterans of the US Armed forces are often highly skilled and thoroughly trained individuals that can be a great asset to your business. The Work Opportunity Tax Credit provides a tax incentive for putting certain qualified veterans on your company’s payroll. Check it the provisions and help put a Vet back to work.
The Number: 28. Employers have 28 days from the veteran’s start date to file an application for certification with the Department of Labor.
The Quote: “Not every veteran is eligible to qualify for the WOTC. The credit is designed to help those veterans who have had difficulty re-entering the civilian workforce or those veterans who have been injured in the line of duty.”