The start of the great recession a decade ago ushered in a prolonged hiring freeze that many say has stifled the growth of the U.S. economy. Companies of all sizes – but small businesses more so than others – opted to freeze hiring, not knowing what the economy would look like a few years down the road. Even among larger companies with significant revenues, hoarding cash was the preferred strategy for protecting assets during times of economic uncertainty. Now it appears as though a shift is underway.
Although what has been termed the 'Great Recession' officially ended in 2009 as defined by government assessments, the real impacts of the recession were still being felt as recently as 2016. With the new administration in Washington and a Congress promising to help the White House scale back taxes and regulations, companies seem more willing than ever to start hiring.
A March 8 report from the Associated Press shows that small businesses have added hundreds of thousands of jobs since the beginning of the year. Furthermore, a survey conducted by the National Small Business Association indicates that 43% of small-business owners expect to hire within the next year. Just 33% indicated the same last summer.
Hiring in Payroll Responsibilities
While some companies have indicated that they are more likely to ask current employees to accept heavier workloads than bring on new staff, it is clear that companies are starting to hire again. With more hiring comes greater payroll responsibilities that have to be met either in-house or through a third-party service provider. We think this is a good problem to have.
It is true that payroll processing and tax reporting is a time-consuming and sometimes complex endeavor. But common sense dictates that it's better to have more work to do in the payroll department because of new hires than to not be able to hire because business is stagnating. In light of that, BenefitMall welcomes the news that companies are looking to expand in the months and years ahead.
The recent increase in hiring is motivation for small and medium-sized businesses still doing payroll in-house to consider shifting those responsibilities to a third-party provider like BenefitMall. Better to make the transition now while payroll is still manageable than to attempt to do it after things start getting out of control.
Outsourcing payroll helps small businesses by:
• freeing up resources that can be used elsewhere
• ensuring tax reporting and payment compliance
• ensuring proper calculation of employee withholdings
• ensuring ACA compliance
• offering additional services including benefits administration, workers’ compensation, and retirement plans
Here at BenefitMall, we offer a range of payroll services to meet virtually any need. We offer minimum online plans that involve our staff working with clients to process payroll on a regular schedule, comprehensive plans that cover everything a payroll department would normally do, and customized plans for the construction and restaurant industries.
What Are Your Hiring Plans?
We are still too early in the new administration to know exactly how government policies will affect business and employment. But assuming the improved outlook we are currently observing continues, what are your plans for hiring? Do you plan to be among those companies looking to hire over the next 12 months?
We expect that many BenefitMall clients will do just that. Some will put on just one or two employees in the coming months; others will hire a dozen or more. It could very well be that we will have to hire if demand among our clients requires us to expand our operations. We would welcome that problem.