As the public sector increasingly hones in on place-based strategies for economic development, it is important to explore all of the levers at our disposal. One potentially powerful but underutilised tool is employer engagement. In this blog post, we’ll explore what activating employers could mean for local economic development and some ways to get started.
Defining employer engagement in economic development
Employer engagement in economic development is about skills, jobs, employability, and sustainability. It focuses on enabling businesses to access the skills they need to grow, thereby contributing to local economies. This increased productivity leads to more job opportunities for local communities, helping to create a cycle of prosperity that spreads across generations. Employer engagement isn’t just about increasing skills; it also helps create and retain jobs within an economy, furthering economic growth and resilience. Economic development initiatives can help drive meaningful change that lasts long into the future by equipping current and potential employees with the skills that employers require.
The benefits of employer engagement
Employer engagement is essential to skills development and employment in any organisation. It is the key factor in successful businesses, as employee engagement helps increase productivity, job satisfaction and growth opportunities. Employer engagement allows employees to shape their skills by working on assignments that are beneficial to them and beneficial to the company. Not only does it benefit skills development but employer engagement also improves the organisation’s overall health as it enables an open communication platform between employers and employees which leads to better decision-making and problem-solving skills. Ultimately, employer engagement creates a healthy work environment that encourages continuous growth and opportunity for everyone involved.
How to get employers more engaged in economic development
Economic development is a powerful tool for growing jobs and boosting the local economy. Employers play an essential role in economic development, as they provide the jobs, skills, and employment opportunities that are necessary to ensure successful outcomes. To get more employers engaged in economic development, advocacy initiatives should be created to share the success stories of past projects with them and help them gain a greater understanding of how their involvement can benefit their community. Through increased education and access to resources, employers will feel empowered to lend their support and potentially enjoy great financial returns from investments made in its advancement. There are many benefits to getting employers more engaged in economic development, which is why it’s so important for communities to make this engagement a priority.
Case studies of successful employer engagement in economic development
Employer engagement is becoming increasingly important for economic development, as jobs and skills become integral to maintaining a healthy business economy. A great example of successful employer engagement is the JobsFirstNYC program in New York City, which provides jobs-focused intakes, assessments and placements to ensure individuals have job-specific skills required by local employers. Additionally, this Community College Initiative Program focuses on helping members of low-income communities obtain jobs through education assistance. This case study demonstrates how effective employer engagement can increase economic growth while providing valuable jobs and skills training to individuals who otherwise may not have access to them. Ultimately, these efforts demonstrate the important role employer engagement can play in the economic development process.
The future of employer engagement in economic development
Employer engagement in economic development is an important piece of the future puzzle. As new jobs are created and skills become more in demand, employers need to be sure that they are taking full advantage of these resources and helping to create meaningful employment opportunities for people in their community. This could look like up-skilling existing workers, providing apprenticeships and internships, or simply building relationships with businesses that can help link employees with jobs they may otherwise miss out on. Employer engagement will be integral to boosting economies and giving individuals the jobs they need and deserve now, and into the future.
Employer engagement in economic development is rapidly becoming essential to contemporary urban planning. Engaging employers in economic development initiatives can lead to greater access to resources, job creation opportunities, and a stronger local economy. As evidenced by the case studies, success stories from employer engagement are numerous and show that creative approaches to collaboration can produce tangible results.
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