In the coming weeks and months, many grant opportunities will be made available to provide COVID-19 relief to communities. These will take different forms and be administered by various entities: federal or state agencies, municipalities, local community foundations, private funds, and others. While all communities and businesses will be in need and deserving of support, many grant opportunities will be competitive. As a resource to help tell your story and make a compelling case with data, we have assembled a Grant Writer’s Toolkit of Emsi Developer reports.
In a perfect world, economic impact studies would only be conducted to determine the likely effects of positive events in a community: expansion of a local manufacturer, increase in education attainment, or a reduction in the poverty rate. Unfortunately, sometimes negative impacts must also be measured, such as the economic impact of COVID-19. To ensure that the results of impact studies are accurate, and thus most useful in developing recovery efforts and allocating relief funds, it’s important to be thorough.
Economic and workforce developers are always expected to have a pulse on the local economy and know its levers and pulleys. As communities grapple with the impacts and economic fallout of COVID-19, this is more true than ever. By providing sound data to help frame conversations and make better decisions, economic development organizations can greatly assist in efforts to lessen the immediate shock and quicken the recovery.
Both employers and job seekers want to be efficient in the hiring process, and skills data helps them do it. With a clearer definition of a job, the needs of employers and the abilities of workers can be better matched in the job market. Furthermore, the likely transitions of workers and the education needed to make those transitions become clearer when using skills.
Skill clusters provide real time information on the push and pull occuring within a labor market. Coupling this information with trends and benchmarks derived from traditional LMI gives communities a truly comprehensive picture, allowing them to determine what differentiates them from other markets. And as a region’s supply and demand of labor shifts, skill clusters give economic and workforce developers, educators, and businesses the ability to be more prescriptive than reactive in the adjustment of programs and strategies.
Anne Arundel County had a problem, but it was also a great opportunity. Low unemployment meant businesses had open positions they couldn’t fill. Their ALICE population had the skills and work ethic to fill those positions. Data helped identify the barriers that were in the way.