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National and state surveys show more businesses about to hire

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Now Hiring Sign
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Scott Manley, Wisconsin Manu... (Download MP3)
Jennifer Warawa from Sage No... (Download MP3)

UNDATED (WSAU) --  Businesses of all sizes appear to be ready to do more hiring. That’s according to a national survey of businesses recently done by Sage North America. The firm polled 973 various sized businesses nationwide. The results are encouraging for those looking for work.

Here in Wisconsin, a separate survey by Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce echoed the trend, with only minor differences.

Jennifer Warawa is with Sage North America. She says they were pleased to learn that a number of businesses are looking for more than part time help. “Twenty-five percent reported that they have hired or plan to hire in 2013, and 82% of those said that it was going to be full-time employees.”

WMC’s Scott Manley agrees that most employers are looking to hire. “We did a comprehensive survey of our members, and we got a lot of good data back from small, medium, and large employers in virtually every sector of the economy. Forty-seven percent of the survey respondents said that they are looking to increase the number of employees on their payroll in the next six months.” Manley says the WMC survey, unlike the SAGE study, did not ask if the hiring was for full-time or part-time staff.

There has been a lot of discussion about how businesses may be affected by governmental regulations and the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare. Warawa says the survey results showing more expected hiring surprised them a bit. “Obviously, when you think about regulatory changes, or increases in expenses such as the Affordable Care Act, you hear that that’s going to have a negative impact on businesses, so when we saw that, we were pleasantly surprised.”

Manley says Wisconsin businesses are paying close attention to government policies and how those policies affect them. “They’re very, very optimistic about the direction the State of Wisconsin is going in, and the policies coming down at the state level, they’re very, very terribly concerned about federal policies.”

Warawa says most businesses surveyed consistently made hiring decisions with one thing in mind. “We looked at what is the main reason for the hiring. It’s demand of their services or their products, so it’s a good sign for these small and mid-sized businesses as well.” Although most businesses were making hiring decisions based on the need to meet customer demand for products and services, Manley says there is a group of employers around that 50 employee trigger that are focussed on the effects of Obamacare. “I can tell you that for those employers that are in that maybe 40-60 range, in terms of the number of employees, they are absolutely focused on whether or not they’re going to hit that magic number of 50 or more, and will make hiring and staffing decisions based upon that federal health care mandate.”

When it comes time to hire people, Warawa says businesses need to continue making smart hiring decisions. “The key is, you want to hire good people that can have a favorable impact on your business, and so it’s not just about hiring anyone, it’s about selecting the right candidates in the right roles and making sure they help position you for growth.”

The complete interviews with Jennifer Warawa from Sage North America and Scott Manley from Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce can be heard by clicking on the applications above.

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