Hispanic Business Owners Optimistic, Despite Tight Labor Market

March 5, 2019 at 9:00 AM Eastern

Hispanic small business owners are confident about their 2019 business outlook, with strong majorities planning for increased revenue, growth and expansion – eclipsing their non-Hispanic counterparts by double-digits on all indicators. According to the third annual Bank of America Hispanic Small Business Owner Spotlight, 79 percent of Hispanic business owners plan to grow their business over the next five years, 24 percentage points higher than non-Hispanic entrepreneurs (55 percent).

Additionally, when asked about their outlook for next 12 months:

  • 87 percent plan to expand (vs. 67 percent of non-Hispanic entrepreneurs).
  • 74 percent anticipate their revenue will increase (vs. 57 percent of non-Hispanic entrepreneurs).
  • 51 percent plan to hire (vs. 26 percent of non-Hispanic entrepreneurs).

“Consistent with years prior, Hispanic small business owners are embracing a significantly more confident outlook toward growth compared to their non-Hispanic counterparts,” said Elizabeth Romero, Small Business Central Division executive, Bank of America. “This optimism, however, does not come without challenges. As Hispanic entrepreneurs look to augment growth plans by hiring, today’s competitive job market has created an especially difficult environment to attract and retain talent.”

With business growing beyond expectations, Hispanics credit employees, family and community

More Hispanic entrepreneurs say their business has grown beyond what they originally envisioned when compared to non-Hispanics (34 percent vs. 25 percent). They credit employees, family and community as their primary sources of support and motivation in that success. More Hispanic entrepreneurs also see their businesses as multi-generational assets, with more than one-third intending to pass their business onto their children, compared to less than one-quarter of non-Hispanics.

  • Employees, community drive confidence: 91 percent say their employees give them confidence they can achieve their goals, while 86 percent are inspired to succeed by their community (compared to 86 percent and 69 percent, respectively, for non-Hispanics).
  • Power of personal networks: 86 percent say their supportive personal network helped drive their business success (compared to 76 percent of non-Hispanics).
  • A multi-generational investment: 38 percent hope to pass their business on to their children (compared to 23 percent of non-Hispanics).
  • Community impact opportunity: 22 percent said they became a business owner in order to make a difference in their community (compared to 17 percent of non-Hispanics).

Challenging labor market increases competition for talent

More than half of Hispanic entrepreneurs look to hire in 2019 – double the rate of non-Hispanic business owners. One potential obstacle, however, is finding qualified talent to fill these roles, with 58 percent of Hispanic entrepreneurs who sought to hire in 2018 reporting the ultra-competitive job market has impacted their ability to hire. As more than half of Hispanic business owners look to hire, they are also more likely than their non-Hispanic peers to report that retaining and hiring employees has become a significant challenge.

  • In the last year, 45 percent of Hispanic entrepreneurs experienced turnover (vs. 24 percent of non-Hispanic entrepreneurs).
  • Of Hispanic business owners who sought to hire in the last year, 45 percent say it takes three months or more to fill a position (vs. 40 percent of non-Hispanic entrepreneurs).
  • 58 percent say the tight labor market had a direct impact (vs. 49 percent of non-Hispanic business owners).

Shifting hiring strategies with social media and deal sweeteners

Seventy percent of Hispanic entrepreneurs say they have refined their hiring and recruiting approach to better compete in this ultra-competitive job market (vs. 55 percent of non-Hispanic business owners), including:

  • More actively using social media to find and recruit talent (32 percent vs. 23 percent of non-Hispanic business owners).
  • Shifting to a more flexible culture (27 percent vs. 25 percent of non-Hispanic business owners).
  • Offering higher salaries (26 percent vs. 17 percent of non-Hispanic business owners).

For a complete, in-depth look at the insights of the nation’s Hispanic small business owners, read the full 2019 Bank of America Hispanic Small Business Owner Spotlight.

Bank of America Hispanic Business Owner Spotlight

GfK Social and Strategic Research conducted the Bank of America Hispanic Business Owner Spotlight survey between August 30 and October 16, 2018 using a pre-recruited online sample of Hispanic and Non-Hispanic small business owners. GfK contacted a national sample of 1,067 small business owners in the United States with annual revenue between $100,000 and $4,999,999 and employing between two and 99 employees, as well as 303 interviews among Hispanic small business owners. The final results were weighted to national benchmark standards for size, revenue, and region, and, for the Hispanic augment, whether the respondents were primarily English-speaking or Spanish-speaking.

Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world’s leading 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. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 66 million consumer and small business clients with approximately 4,300 retail financial centers, including approximately 1,800 lending centers, 2,200 Merrill Edge investment centers and 1,500 business centers; approximately 16,300 ATMs; and award-winning digital banking with more than 36 million active users, including over 26 million mobile users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, 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 across the United States, its territories and more than 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

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Reporters May Contact:

Don Vecchiarello, Bank of America
Phone: 1.980.387.4899