Small Business Opinion, Response to Affordable Care Act

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New health care legislation is on the mindĀ of many a small business owner, especially those who are near or above the 50 full-time employee threshold. Such businesses will be required to offer coverage to employees by 2015. The additional cost of benefits is drawing concern from many owners and managers, with some making changes to avoid higher bills, according to a survey by Public Opinion Strategies.

Among franchisee-owned businesses that employ between 40 and 500 workers, 64 percent of decision-makers believe the ACA will negatively impact their business. Fifty-three percent of their nonfranchisee counterparts agree.

Because of the higher cost of providing coverage, many business operators are reducing the size of their full-time staff. Thirty-one percent of franchise and 12 percent nonfranchise businesses have reduced employee hours while 27 percent of franchise and 12 percent of nonfranchisee business have reduced full-time positions to part time. Such changes are being made well in advance, as the mandate to provide coverage does not go into effect for another year.

To stay below the 50 full-time employee threshold, more than half of businesses with 40 to 70 employees will be making personnel changes. Their plans include cutting hours and hiring more temporary workers. Unfortunately such strategies could undermine a businesses’ ability to grow. A cap on the number of employees could make expansion difficult.

If small business owners need to control costs or initiate strategies to meet the employer mandate, they may need to increase cash flow. Owners who would like to invest in their business to increase profits can obtain financing from a small business lender. Instead of dealing with the hassle and unreliability of banks, small business owners can turn to National Funding for a simple and speedy application process.