Supervisor Gary C. Ovitt
Posted: 01/18/2010 07:32:19 PM PST

Small businesses are the engine of our economy. According to a recent study conducted by California State University, Sacramento, small businesses make up 99.2 percent of the business community in California. In San Bernardino County there are more than 60,000 small businesses, and each entrepreneur understands the challenges behind launching and maintaining their business.

In fact, approximately 80 percent of all small businesses fail within the first five years.

Many small businesses are established by people who venture out on their own after mastering their profession while employed at another company.

These business owners are often more adept in their profession than in the technique of running a successful business. As a result, many lack the tools, knowledge and resources required to run a successful business.

In addition to providing a product or service, business owners must deal with operational issues such as payroll, human resources and employment laws, among others.

Mishandling these areas can undermine an otherwise fantastic business venture.

To avoid the pitfalls, entrepreneurs find that they must become experts in each of these fields through study or consultation with an expert – or delegate someone to handle these functions. Often, both of these options are too expensive for a small business to handle.

In San Bernardino County, it is a priority of the Board of Supervisors to support businesses and invest in programs that will create an environment where they can thrive and bring good-paying jobs to the region.

Our county’s Workforce Investment Board recently partnered with the California Employers Association to provide human resource services at no cost to county businesses. This program, the San Bernardino County Business Network, will give more than 60,000 businesses in our county unlimited access to a human resource hotline for questions and advice during business hours.

Our goal is to reduce unemployment, help businesses maintain stability and build knowledge of employer and employee rights. By helping employers understand their options, we can help them avoid costly mistakes that could cause further job losses.

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