“The average community will derive 76% of its new jobs and capital investment from existing business.” – Eric P. Canada
A traditional Business Retention & Expansion Program (BR&E) is an outreach business interview initiative designed to retain industry and jobs while fostering expansion, growth and development. The staff guide the business interviews to obtain specific information concerning the company’s growth plans, potential obstacles, need or desire for assistance, the company’s perception of their place in the community and the perception and awareness the company has of local government and its officials. The informationacquired through the interviews leads to an understanding of the value of the company to the community, satisfaction levels, growth potential and the potential risk of the firm leaving the community or downsizing. The interviews can identify companies at risk, companies that need help expanding their facilities and community-based challenges.
As an economic development activity, it is significantly more cost effective for a community to retain businesses and jobs. Assisting businesses in Pitt Meadows expand and prosper is essential in raising the overall economic vitality of the community.
Studies have shown that anywhere from 40 to 80 percent of new jobs come from existing businesses within a community.
BR&E Program has four general objectives:
- Demonstrate to local businesses that the community appreciates their contribution to the local economy
- Identify challenges that could cause businesses to leave Pitt Meadows
- Assist businesses with taking advantage of programs aimed at helping them become more competitive
- Build relationships with business executives in Pitt Meadows.
A recent report highlighting the key findings from the interviews revealed that Pitt Meadows’s top three community strengths as a place to do business include:
- Positive Business Climate – local business pride and small community feel
- Good Community Support – from City Hall and local residents
- Good Infrastructure – connectivity from the bridges, local roads and highways.