Main Street Monday – Small Business Owners Want Policymakers to Address Workforce, Capital, Childcare, and Government Contracting

March 14, 2022

Delaney Sexton
Contributing Editor

Main Street Monday – Small Business Owners Want Policymakers to Address Workforce, Capital, Childcare, and Government Contracting

“The way we do business and buy products and services has fundamentally changed. The pandemic further accelerated this shift. It’s time to modernize the SBA to better serve small businesses in today’s economy. Reauthorization will help the SBA adapt to today’s small business landscape and equip it with additional resources and new capabilities,” reads a Goldman Sachs report in partnership with the Bipartisan Policy Center. The goal of this report is to call on policymakers to “address four key areas and reauthorize the SBA in order to meet the needs of today’s small businesses.”

Source: Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Voices national survey.

The first key problem is issues within the workforce and small businesses’ ability to hire and retain enough workers. Here are the statistics:

•Nearly all small businesses (97%) in the survey reported that difficulty with hiring was affecting their bottom line.
•Almost three-quarters of small businesses said that competition from larger employers was causing hiring challenges due to pay and benefits.
•Three-quarters of small businesses are struggling to retain employees because of competitive pay and benefits.
•88% of small business owners support policymakers taking action to address small business workforce and competitiveness challenges.

Access to Capital is the second key issue:

•48% of Black small business owners are expecting to take out a loan or line of credit in 2022. Only 19% are “very confident” in their businesses’ ability to access capital.
•94% of owners report that it is important for policymakers to ensure that small businesses have access to flexible, affordable capital.

The third key problem, and one of the most significant problems to address, is childcare.

•Over half of small business owners (55%) reported that they or their employees had childcare challenges during the pandemic.
•80% of small business owners support Congress increasing access to affordable childcare.

The final problem addressed is issues with procurement and government contracting for small businesses. Here are the facts:

•From 2010 to 2019, the number of small businesses providing common products and services to the federal government was down 38%.
•The number of small business entrants into the federal procurement marketplace decreased 79% during that same period.
•Since its establishment in 1994, the women-owned small business federal contracting goal was only met twice, and the HUBZone federal contracting goal has never been met.
•89% of small business owners support policymakers increasing opportunities and reducing barriers for small businesses interested in government contracting.

Read the full report here.
Goldman Sachs, Bipartisan Policy Center Article