San Diego’s Good News of the Week – June 21, 2024

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week. GNOTW is sponsored by Manpower San Diego.

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For the week of June 21, 2024, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

From our partners:

Report: Lack of sufficient training a key challenge in hiring entry-level business talent

EDC’s Talent Initiatives team analyzed the region’s talent pipeline for entry-level business roles, leveraging insights from 126 companies in San Diego County with a total of 24,000 employees. With findings around hiring challenges, job growth, and more, the Talent Demand Report serves as an industry guide for education providers on the skills students need to access quality, in-demand jobs in the region.

Read the Full Report


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Liz Muthoni
Liz Muthoni

Coordinator, Economic Development

San Diego’s Good News of the Week – June 14, 2024

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week. GNOTW is sponsored by Manpower San Diego.

Get Good News of the Week in your inbox every Friday. → Sign up

For the week of June 14, 2024, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

From our partners:

Last call: EDC’s Annual Dinner

Together with more than 900 business and community leaders, EDC invites you to join us next week at our Annual Dinner at Petco Park on June 18.  We’ll enjoy a brief program honoring our Life. Changing. awardees followed by dinner and networking at the new Gallagher Square.

Buy Ticket Here


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Liz Muthoni
Liz Muthoni

Coordinator, Economic Development

San Diego’s Good News of the Week – June 7, 2024

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week. GNOTW is sponsored by Manpower San Diego.

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For the week of June 7, 2024, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

From our partners:

EDC’s Annual Dinner: June 18 at Petco Park

Together with more than 900 business and community leaders, EDC invites you to join us at our Annual Dinner at Petco Park on June 18.  We’ll enjoy a brief program honoring our Life. Changing. awardees followed by dinner and networking at the new Gallagher Square at Petco Park.

Buy Ticket Here


Business information and resources page

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Liz Muthoni
Liz Muthoni

Coordinator, Economic Development

Reflections on San Jose: EDC Leadership Trip

As I was sitting on my Southwest Airlines flight back from San Jose, I looked into the rows ahead of me to see a scene that has become synonymous with our EDC Leadership Trips: Our former chair and the National Head of Commercial and Industrial Banking at Western Alliance Bank Julian Parra leaning into the aisle to have a discussion with our current vice chair for inclusion and the CEO of Lifeline Community Services Lisette Islas. Also leaning into the conversation were Neighborhood House Association President and CEO Rudy Johnson, and the COO of Connect Christie Marcella. Meanwhile, a row behind them, ResMed’s Head of Global Inclusion and Diversity Sarah Hassaine was in a deep and enthusiastic conversation with Chief Innovation Officer for the City of Carlsbad David Graham. All smiling and laughing. All heading home after two and a half days of deep thinking, work, and reflection in another California city and region dealing with many of the same challenges and opportunities we have back home. All recommitted to an inclusive economic development agenda they helped to create.

Getting 35 local business, higher education, nonprofit, and civic leaders to set aside time to travel, learn, and grow together is difficult. Finding the kind of leaders who can carry all of their knowledge and expertise into every conversation while checking their egos at the door might even sound impossible. But here we are once again, returning home with even more energy, enthusiasm, and focus than we had when we left.

Our time in San Jose reminded us of just how far we have come since we took our first leadership trip to Nashville almost nine years ago. Hearing the stories of employer engagement and commitment to inclusion, learning about deep and meaningful public-private partnerships, sitting in on an hour-long conversation between San Jose Mayor Matt Mahan and San Diego City Councilmember Raul Campillo, and enjoying our time together at Mexican Heritage Plaza and the Google HQ Campus all made for meaningful and inspirational moments. Sharing it all with such a special and committed group of San Diego leaders and friends makes it almost magical.

But it isn’t magic that that will move the needle to ensure that we train enough skilled workers, support the development of enough quality jobs within our small businesses, and create the conditions that will ensure more resilient and thriving households throughout our region. It is hard, focused, intentional, and purposeful work. It requires an unwavering commitment to the belief that inclusion is a true economic imperative. And it only happens when we continuously find, leverage, and support this group of thoughtful, committed citizens who together can help our region meet our 2030 goals.

For those of you who have been a part of this journey with us over the last several years, thank you for your investment, leadership, and support. And for those of you who would like to be a part of the most meaningful, intentional, and inclusive economic development work in the nation, reach out, lean in, and join us in endorsing and advancing these goals. You will absolutely gain more than you give. I guarantee it.

Returning home with clearer eyes and a fuller heart—Mark

Mark Cafferty
Mark Cafferty

President & CEO

Endorse the 2030 goals

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San Diego’s Good News of the Week – May 31, 2024

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week. GNOTW is sponsored by Manpower San Diego.

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For the week of May 31, 2024, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

From our partners:

EDC, Apprenti partner to grow local talent pipeline

Amid a nationwide talent shortage, EDC has partnered with Apprenti to invite San Diego companies with advanced manufacturing operations to hire registered apprentices.

Learn More and Join


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Kyle Winnick
Kyle Winnick

Coordinator, Marketing

San Diego’s Good News of the Week – May 24, 2024

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week. GNOTW is sponsored by Manpower San Diego.

Get Good News of the Week in your inbox every Friday. → Sign up

For the week of May 24, 2024, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

Webinar: New Cargo Opportunities at Port of San Diego

Together with the Port of San Diego, World Trade Center San Diego invites you to join our June 27 webinar to learn about the heavy-duty all-electric cranes recently installed and what they mean for your business. You’ll also hear updates on other inland projects that emphasize energy transition.

Register Here


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Liz Muthoni
Liz Muthoni

Coordinator, Economic Development

San Diego’s Good News of the Week – May 17, 2024

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week. GNOTW is sponsored by Manpower San Diego.

Get Good News of the Week in your inbox every Friday. → Sign up

For the week of May 17, 2024, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

Get help doing business in San Diego

IIs your business looking to expand in San Diego? EDC’s expert team is available to companies seeking guidance on doing business in the region. EDC helps companies find sites, business incentives, talent, and more—at no cost.

Learn How We Can Help


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Liz Muthoni
Liz Muthoni

Coordinator, Economic Development

San Diego’s Good News of the Week – May 10, 2024

Every week, ‘Good News of the Week’ features a curation of positive headlines from San Diego, delivered straight to your inbox. A blend of aggregated stories from San Diego’s most trusted news sources and original EDC-created content, GNOTW provides a comprehensive recap of the region’s best stories from the past week. GNOTW is sponsored by Manpower San Diego.

Get Good News of the Week in your inbox every Friday. → Sign up

For the week of May 10, 2024, here’s what we’re reading:

…and here are some events and opportunities:

EDC, SBDC: Talent acquisition is greatest small business challenge

In a recent survey across San Diego and Imperial Counties, EDC and SBDC found that 1 in 3 San Diego small businesses plan to increase hiring – yet 55 percent struggle to recruit talent. Explore the full study, including regional small business trends, outlook, and more.

Learn More


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Kyle Winnick
Kyle Winnick

Coordinator, Marketing

San Diego’s role in the Navy’s fleet sustainment mission

This is a developing story; last update was made May 2024.

In April 2023, San Diego Regional EDC and its partners hosted the Shipbuilding Regional Industrialization Pilot (SHIP) Regional Visioning event at UC San Diego Park & Market.

The day-long workshop was the first part of a multi-state effort to understand unique regional challenges facing the nation’s defense industrial base. Critical partners in the effort included a Navy Program Executive Office (PEO SSBN), California Manufacturing Technology Consultants (CMTC), Port of San Diego Ship Repair Association (SDSRA), the Office of Congressman Scott Peters (CA-50) and more. The day’s speakers included Congressman Scott Peters, Scott Frost at Industrial Base Analysis and Sustainment (IBAS); Jess Key, Manager of Supplier and Workforce Development at Electric Boat; Gordon Rutherford, President of SDSRA; Kyle Turner, Program Manager at PEO SSBN; and a panel discussion with members of industry.

The SHIP Regional Visioning event gathered diverse industry, education, policy makers, and civic leaders’ perspectives on critical priorities for the shipbuilding industrial base, including:

  1. Industrial base workforce
  2. Technology and innovation
  3. Strategic outsourcing
  4. Data analytics and proactive risk management
  5. Material readiness and sustainment
  6. Supply chain infrastructure and engagement

ABOUT THE SHIP PROGRAM

In collaboration with the Navy, the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DOD) IBAS program office launched the SHIP program to help regions address supply chain and workforce gaps across the defense shipbuilding industry. IBAS selected the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station’s SecureAmerica Institute to deliver data-driven and relationship-based roadmaps to scale and deploy regional workforce and technology adoption solutions that simultaneously support the near-term and future needs of the shipbuilding industrial base.

In addition to San Diego, these efforts are also taking place in the New England and Great Lakes regions. In each region, the Regional Visioning workshop is followed by series of deep dives into topics that arose during the workshop, as well as a Threatcasting activity.

The SecureAmerica Institute then delivers key event takeaways, as well as investment and solution recommendations, to the IBAS team.

TALENT FLOW ANALYSIS FINDINGS

IBAS, SecureAmerica Institute, and other implementation partners rely on regional champions and local experts to help guide their understanding of each region. At the SHIP Regional Visioning event, San Diego Regional EDC presented preliminary findings from its ongoing Talent Flow Analysis project in collaboration with San Diego’s major defense industrial base employers over six months.

What we learned: Poor communication between regional industry leaders and education partners drives a mismatch of talent supply and demand, exacerbated by a lack of shared strategy around industry recruitment efforts.

Additionally:

  • Long-term, there is shrinking interest in the skilled trades. Improved demand signaling, as well as employer engagement in career exploration at the K-12 level could open doors for more young people to be trained in the skilled trades.
  • DOD contracting methods and San Diego’s high cost of living continue to put pressure on the existing talent pipeline. This incentivizes talent to transition to different skilled trades-reliant industries or move outside the region altogether.

read the full report

SHIP REGIONAL VISIONING TAKEAWAYS

During the event, breakout groups with equal representation from each group of participants (industry, education, policymakers, and civic leaders) covered the critical topics listed above in three separate phases:

  1. Obstacles: What are the consistent themes that are driving the challenges in the area? Groups saw consistent obstacles with awareness and perception, cost of living and compensation, skilled manufacturing workers, contracting and supplier support, and inconsistent demand signaling.
  1. Enablers: What entities exist that play a critical role in addressing the identified obstacles? Groups identified education and training programs, marketing and communication initiatives, technology incubators, and government and policy support as enablers.
  1. Resourcing: What resources could be adapted, scaled, or started to tackle the identified challenges? Conversations centered around workforce education, training, and recruiting program areas. Some also highlighted supply chain, policy and economic, and infrastructure program areas.

Taking Action

By the summer of 2023, the SHIP team assembled a roadmap and presented investment recommendations based on the data collected. EDC convened key partners including San Diego Workforce Partnership (SDWP), San Diego/Imperial Counties Community College Consortium, San Diego/Imperial Center of Excellence for Labor Market Research (COE), East County Economic Development Council, and California Manufacturing Technology Consulting (CMTC) to submit five white papers indicating how funds could be deployed in the region to achieve the investment recommendations made by the SHIP team. The collaborative anticipates we will receive information about regional investments into new and existing programming by the end of Summer 2024.

In the meantime, EDC, through support from BlueForge Alliance, is conducting an employer working group that builds on the original Talent Flow Analysis project. This group will produce workforce demand data looking into 2025 and help local partners understand what interventions will be most useful in strengthening the talent pipeline of skilled tradespeople into defense industrial base companies. The results of the working group will be available in June 2024, in conjunction with the release of funding.

Interested in getting involved? Please reach out to Director of Talent Initiatives Taylor Dunne for more information.


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Taylor Dunne
Taylor Dunne

Director, Talent Initiatives

 

EDC, SBDC research show talent acquisition is greatest challenge to small businesses

Small businesses are one of the cornerstones of San Diego’s regional economy. More than 61 percent of all jobs in the region are within a business that employs less than 100 employees, which is nearly double the national average.

However, small businesses are also the most prone to economic downturns relative to their larger peers. The pandemic caused approximately half of all small businesses to face extended closures locally, with many shutting down permanently. On top of that, a job at a small business will pay 34 percent lower wages, on average, than a job at a larger business.

To better understand where small businesses currently stand and their evolving needs in this ever-changing business climate, EDC, San Diego & Imperial Valley Small Business Development Center (SBDC), and BW Research conducted a survey of small businesses across San Diego and Imperial Counties. This survey was done in partnership with SBDC to inform its network of advisors to best provide support and programming. Here’s what we learned:

expansion of workforce

Job growth for small businesses has been flat for the past two years. Nearly half of small businesses surveyed indicated no change in employment and an additional 19 percent reported a decrease in employment. This trend is applicable to small businesses in most industries. Businesses in food service, tourism, and hospitality industries experienced less of a decline in employment since the end of 2021. This could be due to pandemic-induced tourism slowdowns when travel was limited. On the other hand, firms in the construction and design industries reported an expansion in employment 12 percentage points above the average, reflecting the region’s investment in infrastructure and development.

However, when asking small businesses about their near-term outlook, nearly one out of three expect to increase hiring over the next 12 months. Firms in the high-paying innovation economy (life sciences, emerging technologies, information, and communication technologies industries) stood ahead of the pack, with 43 percent expecting to add to their workforce. Additionally, 48 percent of small businesses that have a customer base that expanded outside the region had a positive outlook, compared to only 23 percent of firms that serve customers primarily in the region.

Hiring is the greatest challenge

The most significant challenge that small businesses face is recruiting and hiring qualified staff. More than half (55 percent) of small businesses reported some level of difficulty in talent acquisition. Mid-sized (10 to 24 employees) and larger small businesses (25 to 100 employees), as well as firms with more years of experience under their belt, struggle more with finding talent relative to micro businesses (two to nine employees) and younger firms. As a firm grows over time, expansion in its workforce is necessary, but finding the right people to fill roles is hindering most small businesses. This becomes more of a problem when considering that larger businesses are competing for the same talent. Read more about San Diego’s talent outlook on our talent dashboard.

Other significant challenges for small businesses include navigating rules and regulations (44 percent), retaining qualified staff (43 percent), finding affordable commercial or working space (43 percent), and securing necessary funding (43 percent). Younger small businesses are more likely to have difficulties with issues in the early stages of a business like finding an affordable working space or securing necessary funding. More experienced firms are more likely to have difficulties attracting and retaining talent as they look to expand.

Relocation risk

Of small businesses surveyed, seven percent revealed they are planning or exploring a move out of the region. Additionally, 20 percent indicated that although they plan to stay in the region for now, they have considered a move out of the region at some point in the future. When looking at retention by industry, the distribution and logistics industry has the highest proportion of firms planning to leave the region. Furthermore, 35 percent of responding firms in the high-paying, fast-growing innovation economy industries have considered leaving the region—the highest among all industry groups.

Those small businesses that have considered or are planning to leave the region have more difficulty with facets of doing business. Three in five small businesses that are planning to move out of the county report difficulty in navigating these rules and regulations. More specifically, labor regulations, permitting, and taxes are the most common issues that firms run into. Finding an affordable working space and securing funding are also challenges more commonly found in firms that are likely to leave.

Small businesses that rated local programs and resources as a weakness are more likely to leave the region than those that rated it as a strength. Connecting these small businesses to the right resources can help alleviate the challenges they are facing. Greater and more targeted awareness of what is currently available to help small businesses, like EDC business services and SBDC services, could help.

Tap into local resources

If you are a small business in need of assistance, connect with SBDC and its network of advisors, and access on-demand training and live workshops. For additional resources to help your business grow see EDC’s Doing Business Here page. Additionally, learn more about EDC’s Anchor Institution Collaborative, which aims to increase small business resilience by connecting them to large buyers in the region.

SEE THE ADDITIONAL FINDINGS FROM THE SURVEY HERE