And how you can fix them
You’ve overshot your forecasts, revenues are up and so too are the demands on your time. Congratulations, you’re running a fast-growing business.
Now, you have to prepare yourself to handle the growth. Increased demands on your time and resources can quickly spiral out of control. Without a growth plan in place, your fast and impressive progress can become a top-heavy burden to your businesses success.
The good news is, the better you prepare in advance for such challenges, the easier it is to adapt. Recognizing and planning for these common obstacles in your business’s life cycle can help you avoid them.
Mistake 1: Finding the right workers – quickly.
Growing fast usually means you have to hire fast. With a large hiring push, it’s easy to underestimate the incredible amount of time and money it takes to pull it off. That includes creating job descriptions, posting ads, checking references and conducting interviews.
Time spent handling this immense process is time you’re not spending on the needs of your fast-growing business.
“Business owners invest so much of their time, money and energy into building their organization’s success,” says Jeff Sorrells, senior HR specialist at Insperity. “They want to make sure they hire strong employees who they can trust to handle and grow their business.”
How to correct it: If the need to add employees is too demanding on your business, you might want to consider outsourcing the work. Outsourced HR companies, such as professional employer organizations (PEOs), can help you find and hire qualified candidates.
Most outsourced HR companies are staffed by HR professionals who have the skills, knowledge and resources to help with your recruiting efforts. They can also help you select the best person for the job using pre-employment screening. Employment screening has become increasingly affordable for even small businesses hoping to identify a candidate’s inherent strengths and weaknesses.
Mistake 2: Not offering quality benefits (or controlling its costs).
These days, most new employees expect to be offered a benefits package. But most small businesses can’t afford it.
“Health care and retirement plans are now a common incentive and any growing business not offering these benefits are at a major disadvantage,” says Sorrells. “Employee opinion surveys are telling us that pay is not the top priority for many employees when choosing a company to work for.”
With this in mind, Sorrell says to make sure you have a solid benefits package in place that meets the needs of your workforce. Also look for one that is reasonably priced that not only has employee coverage, but dependent coverage as well.
To make matters worse, as a small business, you have an immediate disadvantage. Typically, companies with more employees receive lower rates on their group plan. This allows larger companies to offer their employees more robust benefits plans at lower out-of-pocket costs than most small businesses could ever hope to match.
How to correct it: PEOs can help your employees gain access to a strong employee benefits package that works for your company and at rates that are competitive.
Mistake 3: Wasting your time on day-to-day employee issues.
For many fast-growing business owners, there just aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done. And if you’re like those business owners, then up to 25 percent of your time is wasted handling employee-related paperwork, according to the Small Business Administration.
Decreasing administrative responsibilities – often viewed as busy work – is a quick way to increase productivity. If you find yourself consistently reacting to the crisis of the moment, you lose the ability to stay focused on the needs of your business.
“You must automate and delegate,” says Sorrells. “There are many resources available to help business owners deal with the administrative burdens of their employees. The HR services industry is growing because business owners continue to see an increase in employment-related paperwork. Outsource this function and set the right expectations for the PEO to allow you to focus on your passion – your business and your customers.”
How to correct it: Outsourcing even a portion of your company’s HR administrative duties can add hours of potentially productive time to your week. As you work hard to keep up with ever-changing labor laws, tax laws and healthcare reform, PEOs give you instant relief by limiting your liability.
As an owner of a fast-growing business, seeing your way through the growing pains can be overwhelming. Staying focused on your needs and using key resources, such as PEOs, can help you achieve lasting success.
Learn how InsperityTM Workforce OptimizationTMcan give you better benefits, with a dedicated team of professionals who oversee your employment issues and make sure your business is always in compliance with ever-changing government rules and regulations.