Mid-Sized Companies Ready to Hire Can’t Find Qualified Talent

October 9, 2014 – Small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) plan to hire more employees over the next year, yet those same companies are encountering a growing challenge that may hinder their expansion plans, according to the quarterly SMB Job Generation Outlook by executive search firm Lucas Group. The firm surveyed 400 SMB executives from various industries and geographic regions on their economic outlook, top challenges and hiring plans. Fifty-seven percent of SMB leaders said they plan to hire additional employees in the next 12 months, up from 41 percent a year ago. A full 69 percent of those surveyed said they feel very or somewhat optimistic about economic prospects for their company in the next quarter. However, 64 percent of SMB leaders said it is difficult or extremely difficult to find qualified candidates for open professional and management positions. SMBs also report increasing concern regarding forthcoming Baby Boomer retirements, with a survey high of 71 percent expecting to experience business impacts related to workforce retirements. “SMBs play a significant role in the U.S. economy, and their actions – particularly related to hiring or downsizing – impact the overall health and vitality of our country,” said Scott Smith, chief marketing officer at Lucas Group. “By focusing on executive-level leaders across the country, our SMB Job Generation Outlook serves as an insightful tool to measure how small to mid-sized businesses are faring in the current economy and to gauge what they see ahead, for themselves and the nation.”

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