Thumbtack’s new survey sheds light on many areas where the state’s small business climate can improve
Find Out if Washington’s Business Environment Has Improved Since 2015
When it comes Washington’s small business record, the results are underwhelming.
For the second year in a row, the state received less than stellar remarks from Thumbtack’s annual “Small Business Friendliness Survey.” Particularly poor marks for Washington’s training and networking programs and zoning laws stuck the state with a C+ rating from the survey for back-to-back years.
The survey analyzed 35 states, using responses from more than 12,000 business owners to assign letter grades to each state’s business climate. Factors such as ease of starting a business, the tax code, and health and safety regulations all were considered to rate the welcoming nature of each state’s business environment.
Respondents rated Washington’s training and networking programs the harshest, doling out an F grade. The state’s zoning laws weren’t far behind, receiving a D+ grade from survey participants. In most categories, Washington business owners gave the state a C, which anchored the state down to its average rating. The category that received the highest marks was ease of starting a business, with a B+.
This report corroborates what others—such as new Tax Foundation research released earlier this year—have found before, showing that Washington’s business climate hasn’t changed much over the past year or two.
Looking ahead to the 2017 legislative session, it’s difficult to know if it will get better sooner rather than later.