April 2022 Accelerate Magazine

WAUKESHA COUNTY BUSINESS ALLIANCE, INC. | WAUKESHA.ORG TheWaukesha County Center for Growth (WCCG) has refreshed and enhanced an economic development strategic plan, called the Business Growth Strategy, which will position the County for future growth and success. The purpose of the plan is to provide a roadmap and structure for initiatives necessary to foster sustainable economic vitality. This planning process, undertaken during a global health crisis and pandemic, reaffirmed the strength of the original plan and the continued need to stay on course. Our commitment to execute a solid, well-defined economic development strategy is more critical now than ever. As any good strategic plan is developed, statistics and data are a key part of the equation. Assessing reports like the Waukesha County by the Numbers conducted by the University of Wisconsin-Madison Extension and the 2021 Waukesha County Business Survey, we were able to identify areas of promising opportunities as well as some significant challenges: • Many Waukesha County businesses have emerged from the pandemic in a strong fiscal condition and are planning for continued growth, hiring and capital investment. Targeted outreach by WCCG staff to area employers will inform our efforts to retain and expand their operations here. • Sectors such as advanced manufacturing, construction, health care and professional services are driver industries for our county and region. Although several large national and multi-national companies are based here, the numerous middle market and second stage companies represent a particular growth opportunity for Waukesha County. WCCG and its Small Business Development Center consultants are well-positioned to assist these enterprises. • Our county’s greatest challenge remains the labor shortage and the continued trend of an aging population with low population growth. This means we must continue to develop and retain the current workforce as well as employ new strategies to attract PATTI KNEISER Board Chair, Waukesha County Center for Growth, Vice President Employer Services, Froedtert Health 14