Small Business

Looking for a job? Hiring — and perks — are at local small businesses

If you are looking for a job in South Florida, your options may be growing. And they may even come with perks.

Four out of every 10 Miami metro area entrepreneurs plan to hire more employees in the next 12 months — 23 percentage points higher than the national average, according to Bank of America’s fall 2017 Small Business Owner Report released Tuesday.

That’s because in South Florida, where small businesses dominate, our companies are among the most optimistic in the country when it comes to revenue and growth expectations. A full 87 percent of those surveyed said they were confident their year-end revenues will exceed those of 2016, according to the report.

And if you land that job, you may find more reasons to stay, according to the survey.

Most of the Miami business owners surveyed — 81 percent — have taken steps within the past two years to retain employees. That’s 26 percentage points higher than the national average and the most of all 10 major cities surveyed.

Here are some of the ways they are doing that, according to the survey:

▪  Flexibility: 39 percent have begun offering flexible work hours or work-at-home options.

▪  Employee perks: Some employers are offering happy hours (28 percent) and creating employee reward programs (25 percent).

▪  Show me the money: The majority of Miami entrepreneurs said they provide wage increases and promotions, with most raises given on an unscheduled basis (52 percent) driven by either employee performance or positive business growth. Meanwhile, 22 percent give regular annual raises.

According to the survey, 22 percent of local small businesses are planning to apply for a loan in the year ahead — the highest among business owners surveyed in 10 major cities, and 14 percentage points higher than the national average.

The survey also found that concern over healthcare costs fell dramatically from last fall, although it is still a top concern of 63 percent of area entrepreneurs. And nearly 60 percent of small business owners believe social media has a positive impact on their bottom line. That’s 27 percentage points higher than the national average.

If you have a job, you could be feeling some extra holiday cheer this year. That’s because 91 percent of the local businesses surveyed said entrepreneurs plan to reward their employees with holiday-related perks, including bonuses, office closure and a holiday party.

The national report can be found here. The report was based on a nationwide survey of more than 1,000 small business owners.