The Economic Development of Elkhart County is known as the "Concierge to Elkhart County Industry".  Our primary objectives are the retention and expansion of local businesses, attraction of new businesses to Elkhart County, and local entrepreneurial development.

Elkhart County tops in Indiana for job growth in 2016
The EDC Releases its Annual Report and Ben Quiggle of the Elkhart Truth had this to say...
No. 1: Report shows Elkhart County was tops in Indiana for job growth in 2016
By BEN QUIGGLE - bquiggle@elkharttruth.com
Mar 4, 2017

ELKHART - Jobs are vital to the health of Elkhart County.
Nowhere is that clearer than in the annual report from the Economic Development Corporation of Elkhart County. The county is ranked No. 1 in job growth out of 92 other counties in Indiana, No. 2 in the nation for advanced manufacturing and No. 51 out of 100 as a top leading location for development in the nation. The county's labor force is 104,616, according to a statistics compiled by the economic development corporation, and expands to more than 475,000 within a 35-mile radius. More than 29,000 people commute into Elkhart County to work, accounting for 17.5 percent of the county's workforce. At the same time, only 5.7 percent, or slightly more than 8,000, people commute out of the county to work.
Mark Dobson, president of the economic development corporation, said that new and creative workforce recruitment strategies are vital for our economy to continue to grow.  "Doing the same thing over and over expecting a new result will not address the challenges in Elkhart County.  As an example, I believe we have maximized commuting patterns to supplement our labor force," he said. "We've run (commuters) for all they're worth. There's not much left."

Here are some more numbers that affect the county: 
* The economic development corporation pursued 91 projects in 2016, with 14 committed developments and $68 million in total investments.
* Thor Industries Inc. remained the biggest employer with 13,000 employees.
* The annual average wage in 2016 was more than $43,000, an increase of 3 percent over 2015.
* 90 percent of employers offer health insurance.
* 57 percent of employers offer training or education benefits.
* 73 percent of companies screen for drugs as part of the application process.
* 24 percent of employers offer personal days, while 30 percent offer sick days.
* 75 percent of employers offer compensation for jury duty.
* The county's median age is 35.4 and the largest segment of the population is between 25 to 44 years old
To receive a copy of the EDC's Annual Report, please download a copy here:
Expand.Advance.Thrive. - Elkhart County Workforce Attraction
 
In order to build our workforce and grow our economy we must be proactive in determining the future of Elkhart County through a collaborative and cooperative effort involving local government, educational establishments, and investors.

Mark Dobson, President of the Economic Development Corporation, said that new and creative workforce recruitment strategies are vital for our economy to continue to grow.  "Doing the same thing over and over expecting a new result will not address the challenges in Elkhart County.  As an example, I believe we have maximized commuting patterns to supplement our labor force," he said.  "We've run (commuters) for all they're worth.  There's not much left."
 
While Elkhart County continues to experience unemployment rates well below state and national averages, and job growth at number 1 in the state of Indiana, these numbers may not be sustainable unless certain actions are taken to strengthen our county's workforce availability and skills mix. So how can we prepare ourselves for future growth opportunities in the future?
 
To answer this question we must evaluate the county's talent capacity. The EDC will continue to create dialog within the community and will introduce an in-depth workforce strategy. Local resources will play a major role in creating this strategy to improve the quality of place in Elkhart County. It is necessary to understand the community's education and training needs as well as the sustainability of the workforce. Tangible actions and initiatives will be created to ensure that county employers have access to a sustainable pipeline of trained talent now and into the future.
 
As this process unfolds, the EDC will be collaborating with our local resources to create a comprehensive, long-term plan to ensure a solid foundation for the sustainable future of Elkhart County. The EDC will also develop and implement a talent marketing campaign, design and enhance a comprehensive online talent portal, and identify priority programs that support targeted populations in Elkhart County.
 
The principal goals of this strategic focus will be concentrated in positioning the county for success in education, training, and performance, leading to a long-term and sustainable workforce. These are the first steps in a multi-faceted and complex subject. We will keep you informed along the way as we move toward a people-driven and prosperous future.
 
Visit our Website to learn more about the EDC of Elkhart County!
Economic Development Corporation of Elkhart County | 574.293.5627 | Email | Website
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