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Over Half of Australian Small Businesses Struggle to Hire

20% of SMBs Planning to hire in the next 6 months

Sydney, 20th May 2015 – 400,000 Australian SMBs will hire someone in the next six months, according to research released by Indeed.com, the world’s largest job site. The research of over 500 Australian SMBs found that over half (53%) struggle to find the right people for open roles.
The main challenges reported by SMBs include finding someone who fits the company culture, and attracting candidates with the best skills. Finding the right person is much more important to small businesses than finding someone quickly – only 4% are worried about not hiring someone quickly.
Mobile mismatch
Previous research by Indeed revealed that 65% of Australian jobseekers are using mobile devices for their job search but most SMBs have no mobile recruitment strategy, putting them at a disadvantage.
While job seekers overwhelmingly search online and on mobile, small businesses looking to hire are using personal contacts and newspapers. More than 50% of SMBs are still relying on personal contacts for recruitment and only 8% are sure they are able to accept job applications from mobile devices.
While some SMBs are choosing job websites and social networks to find staff, many are lagging behind in the digital age. One reason for this is cost – two thirds of small businesses feel that recruitment advertising is expensive.
Transient employees help SMBs manage busy periods
Around half of SMBs consider hiring casual employees, with a quarter saying they help manage busy periods. 15% also feel that hiring on a casual basis is the most cost-efficient for their business.
However more than a third of SMBs only hire on a full-time, permanent basis, meaning they may be missing out on great candidates by not taking the trend towards a more flexible workplace into consideration. Part-time and casual are consistently in the top ten searches on Indeed in Australia, revealing the high demand for these roles.
Suzanne Clark from Bunbury Turf Club Australia said: “The Bunbury Cup is a peak period for us where we need to scale up very rapidly going from 30 staff to 160 staff.
“Our biggest problem when hiring used to be sourcing enough qualified hospitality staff to meet our huge demand. Without getting enough staff, we wouldn't be able to deliver a good event.
“Since working with Indeed, we have been able to improve this. This year I received over 100 applications straight to my email. We’ve found the free job postings, the ability to accept mobile applications, and their dedicated small business team particularly valuable.”
Chris McDonald, Managing Director at Indeed, ANZ said: “Small businesses face particular challenges when filling a role. They have less time, experience and HR resources to devote to recruiting, and they compete with larger and more established companies for the best candidates.
“Having jobs listed on mobile and accepting mobile applications is crucial to reaching the best candidates. If that’s where job seekers are looking, that’s where small businesses have to promote their roles. Remember that the cost doesn’t have to be prohibitive - there are free resources out there for SMBs, including Indeed.”
Other findings that Australian SMBs reported:
  • Out of those hiring, 43% identified replacing existing staff as the primary reason for recruiting. Growth is the next biggest reason for hiring
  • 47% would consider hiring a casual employee
  • 41% worry about writing a good job description to attract the best candidates
  • 13% of SMBs are using recruitment agencies
  • Only 19% are worried about the time needed to make a hire
About the data
The research, undertaken in April 2015, interviewed 506 small business in Australia, weighted by state populations. Small businesses were defined as those with under 20 employees.
About Indeed
More people find jobs on Indeed than anywhere else. Indeed is the #1 job site in the world and allows job seekers to search millions of jobs on the web or mobile in over 50 countries and 28 languages. More than 180 million people each month search for jobs, post resumes, and research companies on Indeed, and Indeed is the #1 source of external hires for thousands of companies (sources: SilkRoad & iCIMS). For more information, visit Indeed.com.