Small business employees said workplace safety was more important to them than other things, such as the quality of potential coworkers and opportunities for growth. (Photo: Shutterstock)

The U.S. economy is improving and unemployment rates are nearly back to pre-recession levels. This economic upswing has intensified an already competitive labor market where job vacancies and the inability to hire quickly can have negative business impacts, such as lost productivity and lower-quality work. 

Although many factors motivate job seekers, small businesses may especially feel the labor pinch because they likely can’t compete with big-business perks and benefits.

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