Small Business Labs

U.S. Non-Profit Sector: Big, Growing and Mostly Comprised of Small Non-Profits

Small Business Labs

The Johns Hopkins Non-Profit Economic Data Project recently released new data on the the non-profit sector of the economy. The data is for 2016 (the most recent available) and was developed in conjunction with the U.S. BLS ( click here to go the BLS's non-profit data landing page ). 

2018 144

Video: 7 Tips to Start Small Scale Manufacturing

Small Business Labs

7 Tips to Start Small Scale Manufacturing - Business Ideas for Product Makers is a fun and interesting video designed to help makers and other small manufacturers build their business. The video, below, is from the YouTube maker video channel from the highly energetic Evan and Katelyn.

2018 151

Use of Contract Labor by Small Businesses Continues to Grow

Small Business Labs

The IRS released their 2016 tax data on sole proprietors.    The data covers business receipts, deductions, and net income reported by taxpayers on Schedule C of tax Form 1040.

2018 156

Study Finds Middle Aged Professionals Moving to the Countryside

Small Business Labs

A study out of the University of Minnesota found that in Minnesota while the younger adults were leaving small, rural towns, people in their thirties, forties and fifties were returning.    The chart below shows the key findings from the study.

2018 190

The Number of Nonemployer Businesses Continued to Grow in 2016

Small Business Labs

The U.S. Census recently released the 2016 nonemployer business statistics. Key quote from their press release : nonemployer establishments increased 2.0 percent from 24,331,403 in 2015 to 24,813,048 in 2016. Receipts increased 1.5 percent from $1.15 trillion in 2015 to $1.17 trillion in 2016.

2016 220

According to LinkedIn, Most SMBs Use Freelancers

Small Business Labs

A recent survey by LinkedIn found that 70% of U.S. small businesses have hired a freelancer in the past and about 50% currently are using freelancers. LinkedIn also found most SMBs plan to hire more freelancers in the future.

2018 161

Independent Workers Feeling More Secure

Small Business Labs

One of findings that most surprised us when we first started researching independent workers was how many think independent work is more secure than traditional jobs. 

2018 184

How Coworking is Changing Commercial Real Estate

Small Business Labs

Coworking has reached the size and scale where it's starting to have second order impacts on the broader real estate industry.    Farthest along is coworking's impact on office design.

2018 169

Duluth's Booming Artisan Economy

Small Business Labs

Duluth's Lincoln Park neighborhood was until recently a rundown section of this lake front city in Minnesota, with many empty storefronts and buildings. But now Lincoln Park is the center of a new artisan business boom.

2018 232

Most Millennials Think Starting a Business is Risky

Small Business Labs

According to a report from the global financial giant UBS , 72% of Millennials say starting a business appeals to them. But at the same time, most say it's too risky to do.

2018 227

The FIRE Movement (Financial Independence, Retire Early) and Independent Work

Small Business Labs

The New York Times article  How to Retire in Your 30s With $1 Million in the Bank nicely covers the " growing movement of young professionals who are intently focused on quitting their jobs forever."

Gallup Says 36% Of U.S. Workers are in the Gig Economy

Small Business Labs

Last week Gallup released the results of their  Gig Economy and Alternative Work Arrangements  study.    Gallup found that 36% of U.S. workers are gig workers. Key quote from their report: "Gallup estimates that 29% of all workers in the U.S.

2018 156

Silicon Republic on What is in Store for the Future of Work

Small Business Labs

The tech site Silicon Republic recently  had a full week of stories on the future of work in the careers section  - 15 stories in total. Our favorite is  These are 3 of the most pervasive future of work myths.    The article's 3 myths, which we agree with, are: AI will totally replace humans. We're entering a work-free future. Only stem skills will be important. See the article for more on why these are myths. And see the whole series.

2018 106

Study: Corporations Rely on Their Non-Employee Workforce

Small Business Labs

SAP Fieldglass's External Workforce Insights 2018 study, 44% of workforce spend at large corporation is on external, non-employee talent. 

2018 209

Coworking's Unstoppable Market Growth

Small Business Labs

Liquidspace's Q4, 2017 U.S. Flexible Office Report covers the continued growth of coworking and other forms of flexible offices.

2018 222

Digital Nomads Enter the Mainstream

Small Business Labs

MBO Partners last week released Digital Nomadism: A Rising Trend , a research brief on digital nomads. We worked with MBO Partners on this study. Digital Nomads are wanderers who have a location-independent lifestyle that allows them to travel and work anywhere they can plug into the Internet. 

2018 137

Expert Network Industry Big and Getting Bigger

Small Business Labs

The report The Rise of the Expert Economy is a interesting look at what it calls a "little-known, high-growth sector, made up of networks that connect experts with companies that need them." 

2018 182

Survey: Almost 4 in 10 Americans Have a Side Hustle

Small Business Labs

Bankrate recently released a survey showing that 37% of Americans have some sort of side job.    The survey was of adult Americans , of which there are about 250 million. This means the survey found about 92 million Americans have side hustles. 

2018 181

189 Coworking Spaces Opening in August

Small Business Labs

According to Coworking Resources , a site that provides information for coworking space owners, 189 coworking spaces are opening around the world this month. As their chart below shows, over half of these openings are new, independent coworking spaces.

2018 151

Uber Unveils Flying Taxi Prototype

Small Business Labs

Uber unveiled a flying taxi eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) prototype at its recent  Elevate conference. The prototype (below) is a cross between a really big drone and a small airplane.

2018 198

Staying Unbiased in These Partisan Times

Small Business Labs

Since the founding of Emergent Research nearly two decades ago, our mantra has been follow the data to where it leads us. This requires us to minimize the impact of potential biases in our work.

2018 169

Study: Despite Uncertainty, Self-Employed Happier at Work Than Traditional Employees

Small Business Labs

A new academic study reports that the self-employed are happier and more engaged at work than traditional employees are. The reason, according to the study, is they have greater levels of autonomy than traditional employees. 

2018 221

Global Coworking Forecast: 30,000 Spaces and 5.1 Million Members by 2022

Small Business Labs

We recently released our new coworking forecast for 2018-2022.    We are projecting continued rapid growth over the next 5 years, although slower than the industry's recent dizzying pace. The forecast was done this year with help from our friends at GCUC.

2022 247

Amazon's High Tech, Checkout Free Grocery Store Opens Today

Small Business Labs

Amazon opened their brick and mortar, cashier-less store of the future today in Seattle. Called Amazon Go , it looks like a very high-tech version of a 7-11 convenience store. It has a selection of salads, sandwiches and beverages (including beer and wine), ready-to-eat meals, produce and meats. 

2018 235

Google's Shadow Workforce

Small Business Labs

Bloomberg's Inside Google's Shadow Workforce covers the use by Google of what they call TVCs, or “temps, vendors and contractors" According to the article about half of Google's workforce is comprised of TVCs. 

Google 165

Independent Workers Have Higher Satisfaction Levels than Traditional Job Holders

Small Business Labs

The Conference Board recently released survey results that found "51 percent of U.S. employees feel overall satisfied with their job." " This is quite a bit lower than the level reported by independent workers in the 2018 MBO Partners State of Independence study.

2018 137

Uber and Lyft Help Drivers Weather Financial Shocks

Small Business Labs

A recent academic study found that many ridesharing drivers do so to help them work through financial shocks and smooth income volatility. The study only looked at rideshare drivers. But it points out that these benefits should extend to any highly flexible part-time employment.

2018 213

Food Delivery Forecast to Grow Rapidly

Small Business Labs

A new research report by financial giant UBS suggests that millennials are ditching the kitchen and instead opting for food delivery in a report titled “Is the Kitchen Dead.”. The report is not available to the public and we haven't seen it.

2018 179

Is Coworking's Surge Leading to Market Saturation?

Small Business Labs

According to the Reuters article 'Coworking' surge in Manhattan raises asset-liability quandary : "The amount of office leasing by “coworking” firms in Manhattan is nearing 10 percent of all new leases, a sign of growing demand for short-term contracts by companies seeking workspace."

2018 165

Cigna's Loneliness Index and Coworking

Small Business Labs

The large, global health services company Cigna recently released their U.S. Loneliness Index , which found loneliness in the U.S. is at "epidemic levels" The key findings include: Nearly half  of Americans report sometimes or always feeling alone (46 percent) or left out (47 percent).

2018 198

Study Finds U.S. Has 27 Million Square Feet of Coworking Space

Small Business Labs

Yardi Matrix , a provider of real estate industry data and research, has released an interesting coworking study.    They've also written an article - Shared Space: Coworking's Rising Star - summarizing their results. 

2018 226

The Data Behind the 5 Signs You Were Meant to Work for Yourself

Small Business Labs

The CNN Money article  5 signs you were meant to work for yourself caught our eye for several reasons. First, the five reasons listed in the article are consistent with our research findings on the self-employed. The second reason is the article had no data backing up the five signs.

2018 151

The Rise of Small "Speed Factories"

Small Business Labs

2018 156

The Top 15 Cities for Specialized Freelancers

Small Business Labs

Fiverr's Understanding the Impact of the Freelance Economy study focuses on what they call "specialized freelancers" These are independent workers who provide professional, technical, or creative services.    As the report chart below shows, there are about 2.5

2018 198

MBO Partners’ 8th Annual State of Independence Report

Small Business Labs

MBO Partners released their 2018 State of Independence report this week. This is the 8th annual report in this series, making it the longest running look at independent work. Emergent Research (that's us) contributes to this study.

2018 169

Reviewing the BLS 2017 Contingent and Alternative Employment Arrangements Survey

Small Business Labs

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) caused quite a stir yesterday with the release of their 2017 Contingent and Alternative Employment Arrangement (CWS) survey results.    Specifically, the report shows that the share of U.S. gig/contract workers in the U.S.

2017 185

The Rise of Occupational Licensing

Small Business Labs

In the 1950's about 5% of full time U.S. workers had a professional, occupation license. Today about 23% do.    This data comes the interesting HBR article  More and More Jobs Today Require a License. That’s Good for Some Workers, but Not Always for Consumers.

2018 198

The Return of Independent Bookstores

Small Business Labs

In 1936 George Orwell pointed out that one of the main difficulties of owning an independent bookstore is turning a profit. This, of course, was long before Amazon.

2018 207

Social Isolation - Not Just Loneliness - a Health Risk Reduced by Coworking

Small Business Labs

Social isolation and loneliness are related, but not the same thing.    Social isolation refers to having relatively few relationships and/or infrequent contact with others.  Loneliness

2018 219

The Continuing Merging of Coworking, Social Clubs and Gyms

Small Business Labs

Several interesting recent stories illustrate how coworking, social clubs and gyms are merging. CNBC's Companies are making gyms their headquarters - here's why covers gyms that also have coworking spaces.

2018 177