Small business owners everywhere face their fair share of challenges each year, and 2014 will be no exception. While the economy is in better condition than it was just a few years ago, many consider the political and financial landscapes for business owners to be unsteady. Here are three of the main issues facing small businesses today:
1. Employee salaries
Compensating employees with competitive salaries is one of the most important and clear ways to hold on to strong staff members. Unfortunately, it’s also expensive, and now that the economy is on the upswing, many individuals are exploring their employment options.
Steve King, a partner at California based consulting firm Emergent Research, told Forbes that now that unemployment rates are falling, “talent is going to be a little harder to come by.”
King told the source that he expects small businesses will need to assess their overall compensation packages in order to stay competitive, including paid time off and health benefits.
It’s no secret that cybersecurity has become a top priority for businesses large and small alike. As the consequences of the recent Heartbleed vulnerability data breach are yet to be fully disclosed, companies and organizations across the U.S. have found themselves scrambling to address their cybersecurity needs as quickly as possible. Unfortunately for every type of business, the frequency and severity of attacks are only increasing.
According to a 2014 Symantec report, there has been a 91 percent increase in targeted attack campaigns since 2013 and a 62 percent increase in the number of successful breaches launched during the same period. Furthermore, as consumers and businesses turn increasingly to mobile, the risk of facing cyberattacks has also heightened, the report found. Approximately 38 percent of mobile users have been subjected to cyberattacks in the past year, posing a problem for small businesses that use mobile apps. The risks then extend to consumers who patron businesses that may come under attack, making them vulnerable to breaches.
Investing in software and technology is one way to combat cybercriminals, This can quickly become expensive, however, making it difficult for small business owners to tackle these problems. These individuals can contact nontraditional lenders like National Funding to find out more information about equipment leasing options. Leasing high tech equipment can help businesses stay ahead of cybercriminals, allowing companies to maintain proper security measures in stores and online.
3. Access to capital
While lending standards have eased somewhat since the Great Recession, small business loans are still difficult to obtain for many entrepreneurs. Regulatory commissions and agencies continue to impose stricter lending standards than in the past, which can prohibit many from getting the capital they need.
Although small business owners may find some relief during 2014 as the economy is predicted to improve, this may not translate directly into easier access to working capital. Small business owners struggling to obtain loans can contact National Funding for assistance. National Funding offers financial options for business owners who are looking to expand or maintain their business practices.