Sage SMB Hiring Outlook Survey: Majority of SMBs Not Seeing Enough Demand to Justify Hiring in 2013

One-Fifth of SMBs Reported That the Affordable Care Act Will Negatively Influence Their Hiring Decisions

IRVINE, CA--(Marketwired - May 29, 2013) - Sage North America today announced the results of the Sage SMB Hiring Outlook Survey, which examined the hiring outlook of U.S. small and midsized businesses in 2013. The survey found that of the 973 businesses surveyed, 25 percent reported that they either have hired or will hire in 2013. The majority of businesses stated that they expect their staffing levels to remain the same in 2013 (47 percent). This compares with 7 percent of respondents who said they will decrease their staff in 2013.

The Sage SMB Hiring Outlook Survey found that the biggest factor influencing whether an SMB has hired or will plan to hire -- perhaps not surprisingly -- is increased demand for its products or services (81 percent). Conversely, the biggest factor influencing those companies that have not hired or are not planning on hiring in 2013 is lack of demand for its products or services (40 percent). Other factors influencing businesses to decrease or to keep the same size of workforce include: economic outlook uncertainty (39 percent), non-healthcare-related costs of doing business (26 percent) and uncertainty in Washington (20 percent).

"If you ask small or midsized business owners, they will tell you that demand is one of the primary drivers behind many of their business decisions, including hiring, and the Sage SMB Hiring Outlook Survey highlights this sentiment," said Connie Certusi, executive vice president and general manager at Sage Small Business Solutions. "In previous Sage surveys, small and midsized businesses have repeatedly reported that taxes and regulations are a roadblock for their business growth. However, what this survey indicates is that while taxes and regulations are factors that influence hiring, the number-one driver is a demand for products and services or lack thereof. Uncertainty in Washington, the Affordable Care Act, the minimum wage increase and other issues are secondary."

Of those companies that have hired or are planning on hiring this year, 82 percent will staff with full-time employees, compared to 29 percent of which will hire part-time employees. Ten percent plan to hire contract workers, and 19 percent plan to hire seasonal workers.

The survey was conducted by Sage in May 2013, and the margin of error is +/- 3 percent with a confidence level of 95 percent.

The full findings of the Sage SMB Hiring Outlook Survey can be found here.

About The Sage Group plc
Sage Group plc is a leading global provider of business management software to small and medium sized companies, creating greater freedom for them to succeed. Sage understands how and why each business is unique. We provide products and services that suit varying needs, are a pleasure to use and are secure and efficient. Formed in 1981, Sage was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1989 and entered the FTSE 100 in 1999. Sage has over 6 million customers and more than 13,380 employees in 24 countries covering the UK & Ireland, mainland Europe, North America, South Africa, Australia, Asia and Brazil. For further information please visit

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Yvonne Yuen
Sage North America