July 26, 2021

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Should you try a 4-day workweek?

We can all probably agree that flexible work is here to stay, to some degree and in some shape or form. With hiring and retention at the forefront of most business owners’ minds, some employers are exploring it a step further. For example, Service Direct, a marketing platform for local service businesses, recently completed a trial of an alternating four-day workweek — aka every other Friday off. Here’s what they found:

We have only been trialing this schedule for about 3 months now, but we’ve already seen improvements in our employees’ overall satisfaction, which is a huge success in our book. Not only has our team felt more productive, but they’ve had more time to balance both work and life. 

In our recent end of quarter feedback survey:

  • 100% of employees said they would like us to continue offering the perk
  • 93% of employees have said their productivity has improved, while the other 7% said their productivity has been the same.
  • 85% of employees said they feel more rested and happier at work.
  • 100% of employees said that having a flexible work schedule is important to their job satisfaction.

Outside of benefits, you might be concerned about how the schedule shift could affect business operations. During the trial, the Service Direct team found that preparation was necessary to help prevent such issues. Their CEO notes, “We’ll stagger Fridays off so that we’ll still have roughly half of the team working each Friday to make sure our clients and projects are taken care of and progressing.”

Interested in learning more or giving this a try for your team? Get more takeaways and tips from Service Direct here

SBA Loans Series, Part 6: EIDL Loans

We know how crucial access to capital will be this summer. That’s why we’re highlighting a helpful Small Business Administration (SBA) loan program each week.

For our final week, we’ll be highlighting a lifeline for SMBs during the pandemic and beyond — the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). The EIDL program helps businesses in declared disaster areas borrow funds for “business operating expenses that could have been met had the disaster not occured.” This includes payroll, accounts payable, and other bills. The requirements for the EIDL program are also relatively flexible:

  • You may not need excellent credit if you have a history of on-time payments.
  • You don’t need to put down a personal guarantee or collateral for EIDL Loans under $200,000.
  • You can apply even if you have other SBA loans, and you may be able to defer payments.

Maximum loan amount: $2,000,000

Loan terms: EIDLs come with low, fixed interest rates—3.75% for businesses or 2.75% for nonprofits—and repayment terms up to 30 years.

The SBA is also offering COVID-19 EIDLs through December 31, 2021. These loans allow businesses and nonprofits to borrow up to $500,000 for working capital and normal operating expenses, such as rent, utilities, and debt payments.

Learn about eligibility and how to apply in our full guide to EIDL Loans. You can check out our full list of SBA loans here.

Form 941, revised

IRS Form 941, or the Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return, is how you tell the IRS how much was withheld from your employees’ paychecks each quarter for income taxes, Social Security, and Medicare. The IRS has revised the form this quarter to help reflect new legislation and pandemic relief efforts, like COVID-19 tax credits.

Regardless of your entity type, if you pay wages to employees, it’s likely that you need to file Form 941 every quarter. For Q2 2021, Form 941 is due this week on July 31, 2021.

For a full, line-by-line walk through of the new form, visit our Form 941 guide.

Find the latest relief options in our Small Business Relief Finder.

Want more news and resources? Check out past editions in our archive.

Mohini Kundu Mohini Kundu is a freelance writer and editor. She studied journalism at Northwestern University and started her career at The Huffington Post before moving into tech where she worked as a content marketer for 7 years. She writes about several topics including psychology, business, finance, and environmental issues.
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