Purpose of Project:
A strategic plan was required to provide a framework and set goals addressing key areas of concern related to an underperforming local economy with focus on:
• Population growth
• Expansion of labour market
• Securing new private sector investment
• Establishing the region as a great place to live and work
Specific, measurable and timely strategic goals were developed for each of the four areas of focus established ensuring that the effectiveness of the plan was easily measurable.
Accountability and transparency were addressed by establishing an annual work plan and a cadence of monthly status updates, quarterly reports and an annual report.
Challenges & Considerations:
The process of creating a new economic development plan for Greater Saint John involved meetings with a dozen community business leaders, 10 focus groups, and consultations with over 300 members of the community to gather input on challenges and opportunities.
A strategic 3-year development plan building on regional strength was created. In this plan four focus areas of work were established providing the framework for Economic Development Greater Saint John to restructure its everyday approach to operations and the work that the agency undertakes.
Areas of Focus
– Attract and retain talent to support the growth of existing companies and attract new companies to the region.
– Build the Saint John entrepreneurial ecosystem with a focus on scalable start-ups.
Business Investment & Innovation
– Promote the value proposition for investment and support companies in being globally competitive.
Marketing Greater Saint John
– Tell the Greater Saint John story to attract people, investment, and support the growth of business in the region.
– 2.5% increase per year (from 62,500 – 67,305)
Increase in Labour Force
– 2.5% increase per year (from 66,600 – 71,720)
Increase in GDP
– 0.5% greater than provincial GDP (avg. 1%)
Increase Consumer Confidence
– By 1 index point per year (average of 99.1)
The City of Saint John and the towns of Grand Bay-Westfield, Rothesay, Quispamsis, the Village of St. Martins and the business community within the region.
In conjunction with the development of the 3-year economic development plan a new brand identity was established and is reflected in the look and feel of the plan, reporting, website and collateral.