Workforce Shortage is the Top Concern

from Jodi Kittle, Communications Manager for the Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce

If you are looking for work, look no further than Muskegon County! Finding and recruiting workers is the number one concern of area businesses according to Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce members. Each year, the chamber surveys local businesses to find out how to make Muskegon County the best place to live, work, and play. At the end of 2017, 68% percent of the businesses surveyed stated that the workforce shortage was the number one concern.

“It is great to have a strong economy, yet now we must work to develop local talent and recruit new talent to the community,” says Cindy Larsen, President of the Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce. “This means supporting effective workforce training programs like skilled training funds,” says Larsen. Last year, over $700,000 in state training funds was distributed to local businesses according to records from Muskegon Area First, Muskegon County’s economic development agency.

Also important to the business community is infrastructure improvement for roads, waterfront development and the port development. At the same time, more public transportation opportunities including walkable/bikeable pathways rated high on the chamber survey list.

Over 150 businesses responded to the annual survey which is used to determine the chamber advocacy agenda for the following year. The Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce will now promote these issues to local and state elected officials for their consideration when determining community needs. Activities that support business and education partnerships will be a high priority in 2018 as well.

The Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce is celebrating 125 years as the area’s premier business organization. Click here for further survey results.