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By: Renee Hansen
Via: Community Impact Newspaper
Weakness identified as mismatch between city’s jobs, workforce
The release of a new Frisco labor market study shows the city as having a strong talent base of employees that is attracting businesses and impressing employers. The comprehensive analysis was conducted by Austin-based TIP Strategies, an economic development consulting firm.
The report, released May 22, shows there is a highly educated workforce of nearly 500,000 people within a 10-mile radius of Frisco. The workers’ strengths focus around information technology and line up with the industries found in the city’s borders such as telecommunications, software development, and financial and medical services.
Area residents soar above the national average of educational attainment levels with 58.3 percent holding a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared with the national average of 28.5 percent, according to American Community Survey data.
Employers also give the area’s workforce high marks, with 80 percent surveyed saying the workforce is either “good” or “excellent” in computer skills, trainability and employee attitudes.
Given its size, quality of the workforce and ability to draw in workers from throughout the Metroplex, Frisco is the place to be for economic growth, according to TIP.
The Frisco Economic Development Corp. requested the study to gain insight on the labor market of the city, FEDC President James Gandy said.
“It was great for us to have an opportunity to work with [the FEDC],” said TIP Strategies President Tom Stellman. “They are one of the most respected economic development groups in the Metroplex.”
The FEDC has helped facilitate projects to create or retain nearly 12,500 jobs since 2009. With a population of more than 133,000, the report said Frisco is projected to gain 65,000 new working-age adults over the next 15 to 25 years.
Although Frisco houses a large and talented workforce, the study identified that the majority of Frisco workers commute out of the city for their jobs. The market overview reported Frisco residents fill only one in five positions within the city, which means there is a mismatch between employment options and the skills of the area workforce.
“The study has identified a number of things that we intend to work on,” Gandy said. “There’s a tremendous opportunity for new companies to move here and utilize the readily available workforce within our city that may currently be commuting outside our city.”
FEDC Director of Marketing Darcy Schroer explained the benefits to keeping Frisco residents within the city borders for employment.
“We have a great quality of life, and we want the people who live here to enjoy that quality of life,” she said. “It opens up a whole different lifestyle when you can work in the city you live in.”