Golden Opportunities: Talent Development Strategy for the Golden Isles 2021-2025
Talent development plays many important roles in a community. It helps current employers hire and retain qualified employees to meet their ongoing business needs. It helps attract businesses looking to locate or expand their operations in a community. It helps individuals identify career opportunities, undertake necessary training and education, and ultimately secure employment. While the impacts are clear, talent development does not happen by chance but instead requires partnership, vision, and ongoing investment.
In 2020, the Golden Isles Development Authority and the Brunswick–Golden Isles Chamber of Commerce launched an effort to develop a community-wide talent development strategy for Brunswick and the Golden Isles. The goal of the project was to assess the current status of workforce initiatives across the community, identify gaps, and ultimately develop a roadmap for advancing talent development efforts over the next several years.
Investing in talent development is a critical action item for Brunswick and Glynn County. The strong business community, effective economic development elements, and committed community leaders have created a climate where businesses can thrive. Currently, Glynn County has 40,000 workers, a 10% increase over the past decade.
The county boasts a diverse industry base anchored by several key sectors, including manufacturing, health care, logistics, hospitality, and the federal government. Each of these industry sectors has unique workforce challenges and needs. This talent development strategy seeks to establish programs, strategies, and investments to support the community’s diverse industry base. The strategy also seeks to enhance prosperity for the citizens of Glynn County, create more job opportunities, and contribute to a strong community.
To support the development of this strategy, we engaged the Carl Vinson Institute of Government at the University of Georgia to assist with facilitating and documenting the project. Additionally, the Institute of Government team assisted with the analysis of labor market, education, and economic data and engagement with business, community, and education stakeholders through interviews and site visits.
The inclusive process used to create this talent development strategy involved key business, community, and education stakeholders. The planning process began in September 2019 and concluded in November 2020. The project’s aim was to develop data, resources, and insights that would inform a community-wide strategy for strengthening the community’s workforce and a plan for implementing that new strategy.
Working together, The Golden Isles Talent Development Steering Committee developed a vision for the future of workforce development in Glynn County based on their review of data, analysis of the current landscape, and their aspirations for the future of talent development in the community.
Vision: The Golden Isles will be recognized as a top location for talent development and attraction that supports a growing and diverse set of industries.
This vision will be achieved by implementing a community-wide workforce development strategy that is aligned to current and future workforce needs is inclusive of partners and have clear accountability. The Golden Isles Talent Development Steering Committee developed a vision for the future of workforce development in Glynn County based on their review of data, analysis of the current landscape, and their aspirations for the future of talent development in the community.
To accomplish this talent development vision for the Golden Isles and to make a positive change over the next several years, the steering committee developed a series of priority areas and specific action items. This section serves as a roadmap for investments in time, resources, and leadership. Each priority area has specific action items to complete in Year 1, Year 2, and over longer timeframes.
The release of this strategy is a significant milestone in achieving the vision for the Golden Isles recognition as a top location for talent development. Now begins the work of following the roadmap and implementing the strategy.
This aggressive, but achievable, plan calls for volunteers from the community. If you are interested in volunteering or staying updated about the progress of workforce development, sign up at https://keepglynnrunning.com/growglynnsworkforce/
Thank you to the Davis Love Foundation for sponsoring this project and their continuous investment in the Golden Isles community.
This would not have been possible without the steering committee members for generously donating their time and talents. Their hard work on the strategy, and commitment to the work ahead, will have a lasting impact on the Golden Isles.