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How small firms can afford to recruit and retain top talent

Losing talented staff is never an easy thing for small businesses, not least as replacing them means recruitment and training costs. And right now the pressure on capital is almost unprecedented. So, how can these firms afford to recruit and retain top talent?

National Apprenticeship Week has put the spotlight on developing talent and the rewards that apprentice schemes can have for firms, but this only part of the employment puzzle for small businesses. In such straightened times, with staff shortages just one of the headwinds buffeting firms, it is vital that businesses have proper staff recruitment and retention plans in place.

With regard to retention, the landscape has changed dramatically in recent years, with the pandemic playing a key role. For example, there is the immediate legacy of the shift to more flexible working conditions, with employee expectations shifting and more employees willing to change jobs more frequently to find a better work-life balance.

This is development that employers have to reflect not only in their retention plans but also in their recruitment policies. Along with the realignment of working conditions and the offer of incentives, and the financial balance that has to be struck to ensure a business functions efficiently and effectively, the hiring process also has a new look, with greater personalisation a notable trend.

Hiring and keeping top staff and how alternative finance can help

Notably, all this is happening against the backdrop of extremely tough market conditions, with the combination of increasing interest rates and high inflation negatively affecting spending power, sales and investment. The recent rash of job cuts across the industry spectrum is a testament to the impact that conditions are having on businesses. And small firms are significantly less protected against these headwinds.

So, how can small firms put the right plans in place and afford the staff recruitment and retention that need to maintain forward momentum in 2023? This is where alternative finance can help.

In the wake of prolonged caution from traditional lenders, which is an issue that has returned during the pandemic and amid challenging post-COVID-19 market conditions, services such as invoice finance, asset finance and peer-to-peer lending are proving a vital source of capital for small businesses.

These facilities, which offer a more easily accessible and personalised approach to lending, are helping small businesses survive and target recovery, stability and growth. Notably, alternative lending played a prominent role in the government’s headline emergency support schemes in 2022, including the Recovery Loan Scheme.

This profile has helped cement the reputation of alternative finance in the business sector, with a recent study showing that more than 50% of small businesses are looking to use finance to achieve growth in 2023.

Staff recruitment and retention and small firm finance options

The changes in the staff recruitment and retention landscape is a significant challenge for small businesses at the moment but it is evolution that they must take in their stride. Affording to recruit and retain good staff in this climate is far from easy, which is why it is vital that company leaders and owners are aware of all the finance options available to them, including the services of alternative lenders.

To find out more about A&T Business Associates services, contact Steve Bowles on 01903 602211 or steve.bowles@atbusinessassociates.co.uk

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