54% of Small Businesses Blast Additional Unemployment Benefits For Worker Shortages

54% of Small Businesses Blast Additional Unemployment Benefits For Worker Shortages

[BE File]

A hefty 54% of U.S. small businesses condemn extra unemployment benefits among big factors why they cannot find workers.


The discovery came from Alignable’s May State of Small Business Report. The percentage equates to small business owners who contend government handouts are keeping prospective employees at home. Further, some 30% state the $300 weekly supplemental unemployment benefit is the greatest obstacle and 24% report the stimulus checks are hindering people from applying.


An online referral network for small businesses, Alignable’s report revealed that 50% of small business employers are struggling with filling vacancies. Restaurants and retailers were cited among those battling with finding workers.


Alignable disclosed in its Road To Recovery Report that 51% of business owners say the employees they can find are demanding higher salaries or hourly rates than they did before COVID-19. They attribute that development to hiring becoming so competitive across many industries.


On the upside, the report showed small businesses have achieved a new, pandemic-era high. Alignable proclaims 88% of those employed before the crisis are now back on the payroll. It states that marks the first time since late last year that the employee percentage went above 82%, reflecting some hope and progress.


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Still, a lack of workers has been an ongoing problem for small businesses in recent years. That particularly has been the case as many struggle to rebound and keep operating amid the COVID-19 pandemic. A record 42% of those owners said they had job openings that could not be filled, a March survey by the National Federation of Independent Business showed. Some 91% of those hiring or attempting to pay people to work reported hardly any or no qualified applicants for jobs they were trying to occupy.


The Alignable report comes as the Biden administration is bringing back job work search requirements for those collecting unemployment insurance as a growing number of states cancel federal benefits over labor shortage concerns, Yahoo Money reported.

At least 21 states—many led by Republican governors—acted over the past week to prematurely cut off the sweetened aid, which granted an extra $300 a week on top of regular state unemployment benefits. The supplemental benefit is not set to expire until Sept. 6, 2021, Fox Business reported.
The news outlet noted the new measures come in light of the Labor Department’s April payroll report, revealing the economy added just 266,000 jobs last month, missing the 1 million forecast by economists from the Refinitiv research firm. Though GOP legislators blast the extra jobless aid for the weak job growth, experts point to a lack of childcare and fears of contracting COVID-19 for the hiring shortage.
The White House administration has denounced claims from the Republicans and some businesses that enhanced unemployment benefits are restraining people from seeking work and causing labor shortages.