(INDIANAPOLIS) – According to NFIB’s October Jobs Report, small businesses are looking to hire employees as they reported a historically high level of job openings this month. Overall, 55% of owners reported hiring or trying to hire in October, down 1 point from September. Thirty-three percent (seasonally adjusted) of all owners reported job openings they could not fill in the current period, down 3 points from September’s report.
“Indiana small busines owners continue to struggle to recover from the COVID 19 pandemic,” said Barbara Quandt, NFIB State Director in Indiana. “Not only is revenue down, but small business owners continue to hit roadblocks when it comes to finding qualified workers. It is critical that small business owners finding the right employees so they can get back to doing what they do best: supporting Indiana’s economy.
Election night was a good night for Indiana small business. All 7 of NFIB endorsed candidates running for Congress won their races, including Jackie Walorski, Jim Banks, Jim Baird, Victoria Spartz, Greg Pence, Larry Buschon, and Trey Hollingsworth. NFIB endorsed Gov. Eric Holcomb also won his race. In the state house races, NFIB endorsed Speaker Todd Huston won his re-election. Speaker Huston is committed to passing liability protection and recently won NFIB’s most prestigious award, the Guardian of Small Business.
“Small business owners should be happy about the way things shaped up on election night. We are sending seven pro-small business candidates back to D.C. to speak up for small business owners. They all have proven track records and have promised to fight for our hard-working entrepreneurs. Now, we need them to get back to the Capitol and pass another round of PPP. Another recent NFIB study found nearly a quarter of small businesses worry they may have to shut for good within the next six months if economic conditions don’t improve. Supporting small business should be a top concern in Congress’ next coronavirus relief package,” said Barbara Quandt.
Small businesses increased employment by 0.1 workers per firm on average over the past few months, an increase of 0.09 workers per firm from September. Up one point, 11% of owners reported increasing employment an average of 0.3 workers per firm, and 14% (down 2 points) reported reducing employment an average of 3.8 workers per firm (seasonally adjusted). A seasonally adjusted net 18% of owners are planning to create new jobs in the next 3 months, down 5 points from September but historically a very strong reading.
Finding qualified employees remains a problem for small businesses with 87% of those trying to hire reporting few or no “qualified” applicants for the positions they were trying to fill. Twenty-eight percent of owners reported few qualified applicants for their open positions and 20% reported none.
A net 23% of owners reported raising compensation (unchanged) and a net 18% plan to do so in the coming months, up 2 points. Eight percent of owners cited labor costs as their top business problem (down 1 point) but 21% said that labor quality was their top business concern, exceeding taxes, regulations, and weak sales.
Twenty-nine percent of owners reported opening for skilled workers (down 3 points) and 14% have job openings for unskilled labor (down 2 points). Forty-four percent of the job openings in the construction industry are for skilled workers. Fifty-eight percent of construction firms reported few or no qualified applicants for their job openings and 35% cited the shortage of qualified labor as their top business problem.