10 August 2012 No Comments by The Northern Standard

The small business sector in Co Monaghan and other parts of the country is offering hope for job creation through plans for future growth, a survey published this week has indicated.
The Autumn Employment Survey of the Small Business Association gives a somewhat more positive outlook for recovery than has been the norm for economic forecasting in recent times.
It indicates that the economy has stabilised, with many firms returning to growth and intending to create new jobs.
However, SFA Director Patricia Callan sounded a warning note.
While she described the survey results as “very promising”, Ms Callan cautioned that, “If the Government increases the cost of employment in the forthcoming Budget, then these plans cannot be delivered on.”
The survey was undertaken at the end of July, and 628 of a sample of 2,000 SFA members responded.
47% of respondents stated that their business was growing at present, with 43% stating that they were maintaining their position in the marketplace. 10% responded that their business was declining.
In relation to jobs, 42% of firms planned to increase their employment levels, of which 7% were increasing them significantly, with 43% maintaining employment levels and 14% decreasing them.
“The live register data hides the fact that there is a lot of ‘churn’ in the labour market,” the SFA Director stated, “with many new jobs being created by entrepreneurial small business.
“However, many more continue to be lost, particularly in the traditional sectors.”
Not enough business was cited by the highest proportion of respondents (46%) as the biggest barrier to job creation.
Other adverse factors to new employment identified by the survey participants were costs (33% of respondents), employment law (10%), lack of skills (9%) and unrealistic salary expectations (3%).
Patricia Callan said the survey showed that the Government needed to introduce firm policies to restore consumer confidence and reduce the cost of employment to employers.
She commented: “Whilst it is commonly stated that increasing employment levels is the Government’s No. 1 priority, and developments such as an annual “Action Plan for Jobs” and the “Pathways to Work” initiative are welcome and should be delivered, the fact remains that businesspeople are …

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