A tough decision for many small business owners today is deciding on the right time to hire an HR professional. Most business owners have navigated through funding, have established their customer base, have a strong idea of what they want their company culture to be, and have a plan in place to grow their business. However, they may be uncertain as to when is the right time to add an HR professional to the mix.
As a recent transplant to Oklahoma, I have discovered a state that I am quickly coming to love. With its generous people and friendly businesses, I wasn’t surprised to find that Oklahoma recently was recognized as the #1 state in the country to start a business by WalletHub and multiple other publications. Because of its reasonable cost of living and strong business lending environment, it is a great place to start a business. Affordability is one of Oklahoma’s draws with low living costs and business expenses being 4.9% lower than the U.S. average, making Oklahoma a very business-friendly state.
Oklahoma ranks 6th in the nation for energy production. With its easy access to natural resources, it is a huge economic boost for the state. Combined with its low cost of living the state economy has grown in a variety of industries. Industries such as mining, construction and manufacturing are on track to grow by double digits in the next decade. Unemployment is below the national average, and it is projected that Oklahoma will be adding 175,000 jobs by 2022.
Add the ease of using a Professional Employer Organization (PEO), and a small business can grow and thrive in Oklahoma. According to a recent study by NAPEO, businesses that use a PEO grow 7 to 9 percent faster, have 10 to 14 percent lower employee turnover, and are 50 percent less likely to go out of business. A PEO provides human resources services, paying wages and taxes. PEOs can also provide compliance assistance with state and federal regulations. In addition, a PEO typically can offer its clients Health, Dental, Vision, Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs), 401(k) retirement plans and other benefits that many startups and small businesses aren’t otherwise able to provide.
Combining the lower business expenses in Oklahoma with a PEO relationship can make a strong partnership in the growing Oklahoma economy. As I continue to explore Oklahoma, make new friends, and build new partnerships, I am excited to see how the state will thrive and continue to grow. I am proud to call Oklahoma home!
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