Wednesday, March 6, 2019

small business plan

small business plan

Small Businesses Will Primarily Hire for Sales and Marketing, Customer Service Positions in 2019 - PRNewswire

Posted: 06 Mar 2019 05:48 AM PST

WASHINGTON, March 6, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Nearly 40% of small businesses hiring in 2019 want to fill sales and marketing roles (39%), followed by customer service roles (36%) and IT roles (32%).

Clutch, a B2B research, ratings, and reviews firm, surveyed 529 small businesses to learn more about their 2019 hiring plans.

Brian Weed is the CEO of Avenica, a recruiting firm for recent college graduates. He says that these positions may be popular because they most directly support customer growth.

"Over the last few years, it's been a pretty strong growth market, and those are the types of positions that support growth – either salespeople who are going to create the initial demand or customer service [people] who are going to work with the new demand that comes in," Weed said.

Tricia Lucas, owner of Lucas Select Inc., a boutique recruiting firm, says her firm sees the highest demand for digital strategists and marketing automation experts.

"People who understand how to execute marketing campaigns with the right strategy, ... those are the people who are doing really well in the job market right now," Lucas said.

More Than Half of Small Businesses Plan to Hire in 2019

Fifty-one percent (51%) of small businesses say they are likely to hire employees in 2019.

Experts said this statistic may underestimate the actual job growth small businesses will see this year.

"[51%] feels a little low to me," said Rona Borre, CEO at Instant Alliance, an IT and financial staffing firm. "I've seen a huge uptick in the fourth quarter of 2018 and going into 2019."

As of October 2018, there were approximately 1 million more job openings than unemployed people in the U.S. Small businesses must consider how they can entice talented candidates in an economy that offers job seekers options.

Small businesses may lack the HR expertise and higher compensation packages of larger companies, so they should think creatively about their recruitment processes and benefits packages.

One-Quarter of Small Businesses Plan to Fire or Lay Off Employees in 2019

Approximately 1 in 4 small businesses (23%) likely will fire or lay off employees in 2019.

Small businesses must carefully consider how they display professional courtesy when letting employees go.

"Preparing a consistent message is really important, as is being honest and giving employees as much heads-up as you possibly can," Borre said.

Small businesses should also be aware of how remaining employees learn about a firing or layoff to avoid misunderstandings.

Read the full report:

For questions about the survey, a comment on the findings, or an introduction to the industry experts included in the report, contact Riley Panko at

About Clutch

A B2B research, ratings, and reviews firm in the heart of Washington, DC, Clutch connects small and medium businesses with the best-fit agencies, software, or consultants they need to tackle business challenges together and with confidence. Clutch's methodology compares business service providers and software in a specific market based on verified client reviews, services offered, work quality, and market presence.

Riley Panko 
(202) 899-2779


Business Digest: Small Business Center helps write business plans - Santa Cruz Sentinel

Posted: 26 Feb 2019 06:01 AM PST


Small business center teaches how to write business plans

The Small Business Development Center will host at business plan seminar, "Build Your Business: Writing Your Best Business Plan" from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. March 5 at Cabrillo College, 6500 Soquel Drive, Room 314. The seminar, led my small business consultant Keith Holtaway, will teach about starting or expanding a business, marketing basics, strategic plans, financing and more. Cost: $35. Advanced registration is required. Register by calling 831-479-6136 or visit All counseling services the SBDC provides are confidential and free of charge.

To view previous business digest items, visit Send your business news items to or call 831-706-3253.

How Gov. Gretchen Whitmer plans to repeal the 'pension tax' -

Posted: 06 Mar 2019 02:08 AM PST

LANSING, MI – The so-called 'pension tax' has been a hot topic in Michigan since it passed in 2011, and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is proposing its repeal as part of the state budget.

Whitmer kicked off the legislative budget season in a presentation to the House and Senate on Tuesday, focusing on planned increases for roads and education as part of her $60.2 billion budget. But part of her presentation was also eliminating the pension tax and filling the budget hole mostly with increased taxes on some businesses.

Former Gov. Rick Snyder made taxing pensions an issue in a slate of tax changes in 2011. Those changes -- really a repeal of exemptions and not a specific tax on pensions -- let people born before 1946 keep their previous exemptions for pension income, gave a smaller pension income tax exemption to those born between 1946 and 1952 and required those born after 1952 to pay a tax on all pension income.

Over the years, both Republicans and Democrats have sought to repeal those changes but fallen short of getting the needed votes.

Whitmer wants to do it this year, and she wants to increased business taxes to pay for it.

"On the campaign trail I talked a lot about repealing the pension tax. I voted against it when the Snyder administration pushed it through to pay for the business tax that was attached to it," Whitmer said.

"So, I didn't attach these two issues together, that was done by the Snyder administration."

In her plan, it will be additional tax revenue from businesses that helps fill what State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks pegged as a $355 million budget hole that would be created by the repeal of the pension tax changes.

Whitmer's proposal fills that hole by putting a 6 percent tax on pass-through entities – essentially, smaller businesses like S-corporations and limited liability companies. That is the same amount C-corporations pay via the Corporate Income Tax, and an increase from the 4.25 percent those smaller businesses currently pay.

The increase in taxes would be fully or partially offset by a change allowing additional deductions from a pass-through entity's federal taxes.

"We're changing this to be a different tax on the pass-through entity which is fully deductible at the federal level," Eubanks said.

Taking into account federal and state taxes, some businesses will have higher tax burdens and some will have lower tax burdens. But in general, businesses will pay more in state and less in federal taxes, resulting in $280 million in new revenue for the state by the time it's fully implemented in 2021, Eubanks said, which fills most of the budget hole left by repealing the tax on pensions.

The actual tax increase for businesses is expected to be $105 million when the federal deductions are taken into account.

Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Sen. Jim Stamas, R-Midland, said that roughly 400,000 people are affected by the tax on pensions, but millions of others have some type of retirement that is being taxed. He wants to take a look at how to treat people fairly across the board.

As for the business tax, Stamas said, "I think that a lot of taxes have been proposed in this budget, and so each of those taxes needs to be reviewed."

The move met with approval from AFSCME, a union representing state and other employees.

"She is living up to her campaign promises by repealing the pension tax without gutting funding for our communities, Fixing the Damn Roads, funding our children's education and training at all levels, and making sure corporations pay their fair share," said AFSCME Council 25 President Lawrence A. Roehrig in a statement.

The proposal is opposed by the some business groups, including the Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association, and the Small Business Association of Michigan.

"Today's proposal singles out smaller companies that have been essential to our economic resurgence," said Brian Calley, president of SBAM. "This new small business tax will hurt small businesses and undo our economic growth. We should be sending small businesses a thank you note, not a substantially higher tax bill."

Rep. Jospeh Bellino Jr., R-Monroe, is the sponsor of a bill to restore the pre-2011 exemptions for retirement income.

He owns a C-corporation, which wouldn't be affected, but he's already getting calls about the small mom and pop businesses that would be. He isn't in favor of the new tax for pass-through entities.

But he does support the actual pension repeal part of Whitmer's plan.

"I'm happy she said that," he said. "I'm bummed out at most of the other parts of the budget, but I'm happy she said that."

The budget proposal is now in the hands of the legislature, which will make decisions on what to include in coming months. The legislature's final product goes back to Whitmer, who must sign it for it to become law.

The pain of fast money - Oregon Business

Posted: 05 Mar 2019 04:32 PM PST

Fintech companies come under fire for predatory lending.

"You can see the desperation in their eyes," says Linda Tran, a loan manager at the Micro Enterprise Services of Oregon (MESO), a nonprofit that lends to low-income and underserved communities. The people Tran describes became buried in debt as a result of borrowing from fintech companies.

In the past six months, several business owners have sought financial help from the nonprofit to escape the heavy debt burden they have become mired in after borrowing money from non-bank online lenders. These fintech companies lend money at higher interest rates than traditional brick-and-mortar banks, and often in exchange for big fees.

Professionals in the small-business lending sector say it appears there are more non-bank online lenders than ever before. And in an increasingly digitized economy, where anything can be bought online, cash-strapped small-business owners, especially minority-owned businesses, are falling into the trap of borrowing at unsustainable payback schedules or at exorbitant rates.

The loans are tempting to borrowers who need cash quickly because fintech companies often require minimal background checks. Traditional banks lend money at lower interest rates, but the process is longer and often requires the borrower to submit a business plan, tax returns and other paperwork. Fintech companies, which do business entirely online, can turn around loans in as little as 24 hours.

"We live in a time where people are used to picking up the phone, ordering something and getting it the next day. Fintech and online lenders attempt to match that pacing. You just don't get a reasonably-priced cost of capital in that scenario," says Noah Brockman, strategic advisor at the Oregon Small Business Development Center.

Some online lenders charge interest rates that are as high as between 25% and 30%. Tran says she discovered that one client, who approached MESO to restructure debt, was paying interest only for the first six years of a 10-year loan. Another client, who took out a 6-month loan for $20,000, would end up paying between $28,000 and $30,000 at the end of the loan term.

Many small business owners are also getting into financial trouble because of a form of lending called merchant cash advances. These short-term financial arrangements require the borrower to pay back the money owed as a percentage of the borrower's daily credit card sales (typically between 10% and 20%).

Merchant cash advances can quickly drain a small business's capital because money is often taken from the account every business day. And because they are not considered a loan, the borrower cannot receive a discount for repaying early.

Ana Inclán, senior business lender at Craft3, a nonprofit lender, says she is seeing more business owners use cash merchant advances to fund everyday business needs, such as meeting payroll. "It is new to be using it for random cash needs," she says.

Sabrina Parsons, CEO of Palo Alto Software, has seen how detrimental fintech loans have been to entreprenuers that are starting new businesses. The Eugene software company provides strategic planning to the sector. She says many companies come to the firm's website seeking to access capital because as startups they can't get traditional bank loans.

"It's kind of a red flag. Fintech has been a great thing but it's very unregulated. There are some great opportunities, but also a growing number of companies are taking advantage of small businesses, because we don't regulate business lending the way we regulate personal lending," says Parsons. "They'll give them immediate access to cash but it's at a super high interest rate with really unfavorable terms. It becomes a really big hurdle for small businesses."

Some fintech companies are clear about rates and fees, while others are less so, says Brockman. "The biggest need is borrower education so people know what they are getting into. Hopefully the agreements they are signing for online loans are transparent about the fees and interest rates."

Minority- and immigrant-owned businesses are particularly in need of education about predatory lending practices. This is especially the case as fintech companies have been known to try to recruit native speakers to sell products to other people who speak their language.

"If somebody is lending you money, they should be asking you tough questions," says Inclán.

While mission-driven nonprofits like MESO and Craft3 can sometimes help business owners restructure their heavy debt loads, many are too indebted to receive assistance.

"I am sometimes able to help, but for the rest it is too late. They have no ability to pay back," says Inclán.

To subscribe to Oregon Business, click here.

No comments:

Post a Comment