Top HR Concerns Among Entrepreneurs

Lisa-StuderOne of the services available at the Dublin Entrepreneurial Center is the opportunity to talk one-on-one with experts about issues facing start-ups and small businesses. Professional services, including legal, human resources and banking, are among the resources offered. We asked Lisa Studer, a business strategist with Sequent, which specializes in human resources outsourcing and consultation, to share some of the top HR concerns among businesses seeking advice.

Q: How do I find and keep good people?

A: We would suggest implementing a program that incents employees to refer other like-minded people – people they know and trust that would be a great asset to the team. Recruiting services can be effective in recruiting for specialized skills and can be affordable when contracted for an hourly search or retained basis. In addition, advertising the position on job boards such as can be effective in finding candidates.

Keeping employees can be a bit more difficult.  What is your secret sauce? Why do employees want to work for your company? Employers now have an employment brand. It is important to develop a great culture, create a pleasurable employment experience and offer employees a competitive total compensation package.

An outsourced HR partner can help you to attract and retain top talent by offering a Fortune 500 HR experience to your employees. This will level the playing field allowing you to attract and retain talent from larger corporations.

Q: How can I control the rising cost of employee benefits?

A: Employee benefits are a significant portion of total compensation that you provide to each employee. One approach to stabilizing the runaway cost of health insurance is to participate in some type of preferred advantaged shared-risk pool. This will provide stability and predictability in the cost of premiums as well as provide a layer of insulation from significant increases due to an event in your small group. Sequent runs a large group health plan thereby creating a preferred-risk pool and rate stability (four years with no increase in premiums).

Q: Is my business too small for outsourced HR service?

A: Once you hire that first employee you gain three new responsibilities: 1) an administrative burden, 2) a compliance burden, and 3) employment-related liability. In addition, if your leadership team is spending their time on administrative tasks that do not drive revenue, profit and growth, you are not operating at your highest level. In summary, once you hire the first employee you are ready for an outsourced HR solution which will allow you to transfer employment-related risk and administration to your outsourced HR partner. In the outsourced model, your HR partner is an aggregator and you can gain significant economies of scale as you are sharing in the cost for benefits, expertise and technology, which can’t be replicated for the same cost if built internally.

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