A county’s Department of Economic Development (DED) wanted a complete understanding of its organization and economy. Using its Visualization Engineering® methodology, IT Cadre developed a current state visualization based on operational and economic data. The visualization provided a geographic view of the county’s strengths and areas for improvement. The county used the visualization to analyze the current economy and the department’s approach to attract and retain businesses in the county.
What We Did
IT Cadre determined three major key findings when developing the current state for the county's DED.
- The county was an exporter of talent. More residents leave to work in other counties (over 110,000) than remain to work within the county (approximately 56,000). Additionally, most local high school graduates find work outside the county after returning from college graduation.
- There is a natural conflict between the county’s desire to preserve rural land and the availability of commercially zoned property in more urban areas.
- The three largest employers in the county are tax-consuming (schools and government agencies). In order to reduce the tax burden on residents, the DED must grow the business tax base.
This engagement provided a holistic understanding of the DED’s activities in support of the county’s vision of a diverse and globally competitive economy. The visualization highlights friction points for businesses, including approval processes to start or expand their operations in the county.
IT Cadre also showed the many economic engines that contribute to the county’s growth. The view detailed the companies and government agencies which drove multiple levels of business, and revealed both revenue-producing and tax-consuming employers.
Using the holistic, data-driven view, the county was able to shift its perception of the workforce shortage. Instead the facts showed the county has an abundance of talent in its own neighborhood.