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Good workers getting harder to find for small businesses

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A new CFIB backgrounder shows that although a majority of small business owners said their workers are the most important factor in the success of their business, they are struggling to find new candidates of the same quality: two-thirds of business owners surveyed said that the quality of job applicants has declined.

A full 88% of small business employers said the main barrier to hiring was a lack of qualified applicants.

Employers reported observing certain behaviours in their employees that are drags on productivity:

  • 61% said employees spend too much time on personal phone calls, emails, and texting during work hours.
  • 55% said gossiping or chatting with colleagues negatively affects productivity.
  • 40% said excessive or repeated lateness has a negative impact on productivity.

The survey asked employers to provide advice for job seekers. Highlights include:

  • Prepare a short, simple resume. Above all, ensure there are zero spelling or grammatical errors.
  • Leave the PJs & flip flops at home. Come dressed appropriately to the nature of the work you are considering. Be clean and well-groomed.
  • Don’t have mom talk for you in interviews.


Anatomy of a worker