Facts & Resources

Metro New York Small Business Owners Say Finding and Retaining Talent Is Challenging, but Critical for Success

Fall Bank of America Small Business Owner Report Finds Local Optimism Heading Into 2014

Thursday, November 14, 2013 9:00 am EST



Public Company Information:

"We’re committed to helping these businesses continue to grow and realize their revenue potential for 2014."

Bank of America today released its fall 2013 Small Business Owner Report, a semi-annual study exploring the concerns, aspirations and perspectives of small business owners across the country. The survey, which includes an oversampling of small business owners in the metro New York market, found that 33 percent of respondents plan to hire over the next 12 months, yet close to half (48 percent) say finding qualified employees is difficult.

Of those metro New York small business owners who plan on hiring new talent in 2014, 33 percent are staffing up for an increase in business. With good talent difficult to find and small business owners looking to increase business, they are also focused on keeping valuable employees. The report found that the top actions small business owners in metro New York take to retain employees are offering a competitive salary (56 percent), bonuses for high performers (49 percent), flexible work arrangements (40 percent) and listening to and implementing employee feedback (40 percent).

Close to half of metro New York small business owners (48 percent) agree that managing their staff is a source of great pride for them. But 61 percent admit to having some level of frustration with their employees. The top frustrations are lack of accountability (19 percent), poor time management (17 percent), and lack of proactive thinking (17 percent).

For more information on small business owners’ talent needs, click here.

“Metro New York small business owners are extremely proud of their businesses and their employees,” said Christopher Kaminski, metro New York Small Business Banking manager, Bank of America. “We’re committed to helping these businesses continue to grow and realize their revenue potential for 2014.”

Metro New York small business owners are optimistic about the year ahead, but continue to have concerns
Small business owners feel optimistic about the future of their businesses. Sixty-two percent of those surveyed in metro New York expect their revenue to increase in the next twelve months, an eleven percent increase from 2012.

In addition, the report also found that 47 percent of metro New York small business owners believe their local economy will improve over the next 12 months. Over half (53 percent) believe that the national economy will improve.

For more information on small business owners’ 2014 outlook, click here.

Nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of metro New York small business owners are concerned about the effectiveness of U.S. government leaders, and 79 percent are concerned about health care costs. Other concerns that may affect the success of their business in the next 12 months include:

  • Commodities prices (e.g., oil, gas) – 64 percent.
  • Global stock market – 62 percent.
  • Consumer spending – 62 percent.
  • Corporate tax rates – 60 percent.
  • The strength of the U.S. dollar – 57 percent.

Despite concern about health care costs, more than half (58 percent) of metro New York small business owners say their hiring plans will not change in the next year due to health care legislation. Thirty-three percent of metro New York small business owners currently provide health/wellness benefit packages, compared to 27 percent nationally.

Holidays are still “business as usual” for many small businesses
While most small business owners still don’t see a material impact from Black Friday or Cyber Monday, the percentage that do see an impact has increased from last year. Sixty-eight percent of small business owners in metro New York think Black Friday has little or no impact on their bottom line, as compared to 90 percent last year. Eighty-two percent think Cyber Monday is similarly overhyped, as compared to 91 percent in the fall report.

Maintaining a work-life balance during the last month of the year is an issue for many metro New York small business owners as 43 percent report working longer hours during the holidays.

Metro New York small business owners are generous when thanking their employees during the holidays. The most popular perks planned for this holiday season are:

  • Awarding salary bonuses – 59 percent.
  • Hosting a holiday party – 50 percent.
  • Closing the office during holidays – 44 percent.
  • Offering flexible work hours during the holidays – 40 percent.

Only 12 percent do not intend to offer holiday-related perks this year.

For more information on small business owners’ holiday outlook, click here.

Bank of America has continued to lend actively to small businesses across the U.S. and New York. Through September of this year, Bank of America has extended more than $578 million in new credit across New York to small businesses – an increase of 48 percent over the same period last year. This has helped enable Bank of America to exceed its national small business lending pledge to the White House and the U.S. Small Business Administration.

For an in-depth look at the attributes of the nation’s small business owners, read the entire fall 2013 Bank of America Small Business Owner Report. An infographic with highlights of the report can be found here.

About the Bank of America Small Business Owner Report
Braun Research conducted the Bank of America Small Business Owner Report survey by phone between September 12 and October 3, 2013, on behalf of Bank of America. Braun contacted a nationally representative sample of 1,000 small business owners in the United States with annual revenue between $100,000 and $4,999,999 and employing between 2 and 99 employees. In addition, 300 small business owners were also surveyed in nine target markets: Los Angeles, metro New York, Washington, D.C., New York, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Atlanta and Miami. The margin of error for the national sample is +/- 3.1 percent and the margin of error for the oversampled markets is +/- 5.7 percent, with both reported at a 95 percent confidence level.

The Braun Research survey results conducted on behalf of Bank of America and interpretations in this release are not intended, nor implied, to be a substitute for the professional advice received from a qualified accountant, attorney or financial advisor. Always seek the advice of an accountant, attorney or financial advisor with any questions you may have regarding the decisions you undertake as a result of reviewing the information contained herein. Nothing in this report should be construed as either advice or legal opinion.

Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small- and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. We serve approximately 51 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 5,200 retail banking offices and approximately 16,200 ATMs and award-winning online banking with 30 million active users and more than 14 million mobile users. Bank of America is among the world's leading wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in more than 40 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

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Reporters May Contact:
T.J. Crawford, Bank of America, 1.646.855.3301